THE BIG LEAGUE TOURS BLOG

Baseball Tour Videos On Line

Posted by Doug Lawson on Thu, Nov 15, 2012 @ 11:13 AM

Glenn and I spent Monday making informational videos for the website. We thought it would be a good idea to discuss all the aspects of our baseball tours in a video format. That way, prospective customers can get a better sense of our baseball vacation packages and who we are. I think they turned out pretty good. It's amazing what you can do with an Ipad and IMovie. We tried to go through the basic itinerary of each tour, and discuss some of the Big League Tours differences. We also took some time to talk about some of our favorite ballparks, like Yankee Stadium, Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, AT&T Ballpark, and PNC Park. We're no Redford and Newman, but I think the informal videos will help fans make a decision as to which baseball tour they want to join.

The last tour video we shot was for the Big Apple Tour 2. It was late in the day, and we got a little loose with it. So, no offense to our Mets and Yankees fans, but we posted it anyway. I put it here too, so go ahead and take a look. It's all in fun. Go to the website too, to check out the other videos. We would appreciate any feedback you might have. 


 


Tags: Citi Field, baseball road trips, baseball stadiums, baseball vacation package, baseball vacation, baseball road trip, baseball tour, ballpark tours, big league tours, Yankee Stadium, New York City

Big League Tours travel season in 31 photos- Midwest and HoF Tours

Posted by Kayla Wininger on Thu, Sep 27, 2012 @ 04:08 PM

Since joining the Big League Tours crew in early summer, I've had the amazing opportunity to lead two tours. The first time I was the co-pilot with Martha Ellen in Chicago/Milwaukee and the second I was flying solo with the group in New York, Boston and Cooperstown. 

As the 2012 MLB season wraps up, I thought this would be a great time to share some of my favorite pictures from the trips this summer (I also threw in a few from the corporate outing we hosted). My iPhone is my best friend and I love snapping shots of absolutely anything and everything! FYI- My iPhone is far from professional so ignore some of the blurry stuff and just imagine the great times everyone was having!

Join me while I recount the amazing people I've met and wonderful places I've been thanks to Big League Tours.

There will be plenty of photos to come next year so stay tuned, hopefully your face will even be featured in a few! Sign up for our 2013 Tours and be the first to recieve the schedule once it's released!

Follow us on Facebook (Big League Tours), Instagram (BigLeagueTours) and Twitter (@BigLeagueTours) to view our other photos!

Music: Sweet Caroline- Glee Cast

Tags: Red Sox, Boston, Citi Field, Milwaukee, Yawkey Way, east coast baseball tour, baseball stadiums, ballpark tours, Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, Yankees, Brewers, Chicago, Yankee Stadium, Reds, Great American Ball Park, company outing, hall of fame, Cooperstown, Baseball, Cubs, ballparks

Navigating New York City 101—Baseball Vacation Style

Posted by Kayla Wininger on Tue, Sep 25, 2012 @ 12:39 PM

We know one thing about people who purchase a Big League Tours package, they love to travel! Something else we know; travelling the world can’t even prepare you for what New York City will throw your way. With two ballparks and countless other baseball attractions, it’s crucial to make sure you know the best way to explore the city before you head out on your own.  

Here’s the run down of “Navigating NYC 101”:

Using public transportation is a MUST:

Ride the subway at least once!

manhattan

When you first enter a station you’ll want to purchase a MetroCard from a self-service machine. Fares are (as of 9/25/12) $2.25 each way and usually allow you to switch lines without paying another fee, just make sure you don’t exit the station. I would recommend a minimum of $5 every time you add money to your card in case of an emergency. MTA is the subway system in NYC and the fastest way to get from point A to B. 

Once you get your card, enter the turnstiles by sliding your card through the machine, look at the image on the machine so you know which way to place your card. After you swipe the card, you’re remaining balance will show on a small screen and you can now enter through the turnstiles.

Now that you’re inside you’ll look for the colored circles with the number or letter of the line you want to take. Subway lines are color-coded depending on where they go and you’ll want to pay close attention to if the signs say “Uptown” or “Downtown”.  Uptown heads north and Downtown south. If you aren’t travelling to Queens or Brooklyn, these are the main things you’ll need to know about directions. If you accidently get on the wrong train, exit at the next stop and consult a map on how to get back to where you were. 

Subway doors close quickly so make sure you’re ready when the train arrives. 

NOTE: If you have an iPhone, maps will provide you with which line you should travel to get to your destination. 

yankee stadium

Directions to Yankee Stadium from the Grand Hyatt Hotel

-Walk to Grand Central Terminal on 42nd Street

-Take the 4 Subway towards Woodlawn (Uptown)

-Exit at 161st Street/Yankee Stadium

-Walk 500ft. to Yankee Stadium

Note: Returning you'll take the 4 (downtown) to Grand Central Terminal/42nd Street 

Hail your first cab in NYC.

You’ll see cabs everywhere you look; it really is just like the movies! Be aggressive because they’ll take advantage of tourists without thinking twice!

So here’s how it works… Cabs with their lights on are available, just step off the sidewalk, stick out your arm, and they will come. Hailing a cab from a sidewalk may make them think you’re unsure. Be aggressive and you shouldn’t have a problem. 

When giving your location to the driver, it’s important that you seem very sure of where you’re going so they don’t try and take you the long way. 

For example, say you’re trying to spend your afternoon at the Bergino Baseball Clubhouse to grab a few souvenirs. Try this:

I’m headed to 11th Street between University Place and Broadway.

This way the driver knows that you know exactly where you want to go.

Throw on your walking shoes.

Walking in New York City is the best way to take in the sights as you travel to your destination. It also gives you some time to people watch. The concierge desk always has great directions but don’t forget to grab a map just in case you end up somewhere you hadn’t planned on!

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So there you have it. My main suggestions for exploring NYC like you've been there a dozen times. They may seem simple but it’s easy to get lost in a city of more than 8 million people. New York City has an endless amount of baseball destinations outside the stadium; take advantage of them without getting lost!

Check back in the next few weeks to see a list of our 2013 Tours and get signed up for the trip of a lifetime in one of America’s most exciting cities!

Tags: baseball vacations, Citi Field, travel, New York, east coast baseball tour, ballpark tours, Yankees, Yankee Stadium, New York City, Baseball

Baseball and Koala Bears

Posted by Kayla Wininger on Mon, Aug 13, 2012 @ 10:37 AM

I headed to the East Coast for my first Big League Tours adventure, flying solo! Although I could have spent days enjoying the city, it was down to business when the wheels hit the ground at Boston Logan.  enway will always hold a special place in my heart since it was the first Major League Baseball game I ever attended. I was glad to be back and start sharing what I knew about the stadium with our guests!

IMG 3476After meeting BLT Host and permanent Boston resident, Mike G. for some secrets of Fenway and a little confidence boost, it was time to hit the hotel and meet my guinea pigs!  I’m thrilled to say that my first ever tour group couldn’t have been more fantastic. Within the first five minutes, the Australian’s had the whole group rolling with laughter while comparing their accents to the Texans on the trip.

We quickly learned that we’d be helping each other a lot over the next week as most of the group learned how to ride a metro system! Once we made it to Fenway the group was off exploring the stadium and checking out one of the best gift stores in MLB.  Secret #1 that I discovered, the Bleacher Bar is a must! Enjoy a cheap (for a sporting event) beer while watching batting practice from the outfield!

Secret #2 of the trip, be selective when you try to escape the heat in the Yankee Stadium gift shop, they aren’t all air-conditioned! I’m not sure what he was doing, but the weather god wasn’t looking down on us in New York. With temperatures in the 100’s on Wednesdays and 60’s on Friday at Citi Field, I thought I was back in Indiana’s crazy weather.

The heat and rain couldn’t keep our die-hard fans away, especially the Lantz’s who had seen every stadium in the country prior to the addition of six more. With a tour of Yankee Stadium and private meet and greet with 1969 World Series Champion, Art Shamsky, they were thrilled to see more than just a game.

IMG 3537 resized 600

Outside of the scheduled events, our group became very close and spent most of our free day exploring New York City together. With a trip to Lombardi’s Pizza, the first coal oven pizza place in the United States, and then the World Trade Center Memorial, the off time was definitely used for more than testing the pillows in the hotel room. 

There were definitely lessons learned on my first tour and one of those was how quickly a group of strangers can turn into a temporary family.  We even added a few family members, thanks to the Aussie’s who gave us stuffed koalas as a souvenier! I couldn’t have asked for a better group to share my first trip with, hopefully it won’t be the last time we’ll be seeing each other!

Tags: Red Sox, Citi Field, New York, ballpark tours, Fenway Park, MLB tours, sports vacation, Yankees, Yankee Stadium, hall of fame, Mets

Hall of Fame Tour Travelers Pick Up a New Glove?

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Tue, Jun 05, 2012 @ 12:01 PM

Later this month and again in July, we'll host a couple of groups of baseball tour travelers to one of our favorite destinations, Cooperstown, New York. Our tours will spend the day at the National Baseball Hall of Fame - looking into the past of the nation's favorite sport. 

Here's a fun video about a man who's looking to change an important element of the game - the baseball glove. Looks to me like our guests will have to swing into his shop to check out what he's been developing...

Our 2012 Hall of Fame Tours include games at Citi Field, Yankee Stadium and Fenway Park as well as a full day in Cooperstown. For more information or to join us for the baseball vacation pacakge, visit the Hall of Fame 4 webpage.

Tags: Boston, Citi Field, New York, east coast baseball tour, baseball tours, Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium, MLB road trips, hall of fame, Cooperstown

Join the East Coast Baseball Tour

Posted by Doug Lawson on Thu, Feb 09, 2012 @ 03:33 PM

View from our seats at Oriole ParkThe Baseball Aficianado's Dream!!

Do you want to get a big jump-start on your baseball bucket list? Then join Big League Tours on the Touch ‘em All Out East luxury baseball vacation. This extensive tour will visit Nationals Park, Camden Yards, Citizens Bank Park, Yankee Stadium, Citi Field, Fenway Park, and the Baseball Hall of Fame. Guests will be close to the action at every ballpark with Big League Tours’ Lower Level Seat Guarantee.

As always, the tour group will stay in the heart of the cities with luxury hotel accommodations East Coast Baseball Trip Brochurenear the great attractions and sites in each location. And, with Big League Tours' Sensible Itineraries, there will actually be time to enjoy them all. Add in an exclusive meet and greet with the Big League Tours' MLB player experience; Stadium Tours; On Site BLT Host; In-Room Welcome Gift; and you have a baseball vacation that will give you a lifetime of memories. Learn more about the Big Difference with Big League Tours.

Here’s the link to the Full East Coast Tour- Touch ‘em All Out East

Here’s the link to get a printable/shareable brochure- East Coast Brochure

Tags: Citi Field, Citizens Bank Park, east coast baseball tour, Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium, Nationals Park, hall of fame, Oriole Park, Camden Yards

Big Apple, Big Red Machine and Big League Tours

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Sat, Dec 31, 2011 @ 06:00 AM

Anyway You Look At It, This Baseball Tour Is Gonna Be Big!!

Baseball and travel are obviously two things that I love. But when you combine my favorite city Brandon Phillips at bat at Shea Stadiumand my favorite team, it's an unbeatable combination. This May, the Reds are headed to New York City to play the Mets and the Yankees in back-to-back series at Citi Field and Yankee Stadium. This road trip will be a great way to hang out in Manhattan for several days while taking in several games and exploring the sites.

It's been awhile since our tours have included the Reds on a series in New York. In fact, here's a photo of Brandon Phillips at bat at Shea Stadium taken from our seats on a tour in 2007, which I'm pretty sure is the last time we crossed paths in the Big Apple.

If this sounds like a great way to see the city and some great baseball games, check out our Big Apple Tour. You'll have plenty of time to explore NYC and our tour director will guide you through a great itinerary where you'll have a meet and greet with a former big league player, sit in great seats at the game, and stay in a great hotel in Midtown.

Tags: Citi Field, baseball road trips, Yankees, Yankee Stadium, Reds, Mets

2012 Hall of Fame Tours

Posted by Glenn Dunlap on Sun, Dec 04, 2011 @ 06:02 AM

Talking with baseball fans from all across the country, it becomes apparent very quickly that Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium, and the National Baseball Hall of Fame are the top three Fenway Park from our seatsdestinations on almost every baseball enthusiast's bucket list. So to help fulfill those dreams, we've created four tours, at different points in the season, to give folks a chance to see these great baseball monuments.

On each of the tours, our guests will take in games at Fenway Park and Yankee Stadium. And since we'll already be in New York City, we've even included Citi Field in the mix. (Once you see this ballpark, you'll be really glad we did!!)

Here's a quick run down of the Hall of Fame Tours:

Hall of Fame Tour 1 - May 14-19, 2012
Includes: Fenway Park, The National Baseball Hall of Fame, Yankee Stadium & Citi Field

Hall of Fame Tour 2 - June 4-8, 2012
Includes: Yankee Stadium, Citi Field, The National Baseball Hall of Fame & Fenway Park

Hall of Fame Tour 3 - June 24-28, 2012
Includes: Yankee Stadium, Citi Field, The National Baseball Hall of Fame & Fenway Park

Hall of Fame Tour 4 - July 16-21, 2012
Includes: Fenway Park, The National Baseball Hall of Fame, Yankee Stadium & Citi Field

As you can imagine, I've hosted this tour a few times. Even then, I look forward to it every time as there are things that I love to do at each of our stops. There are the obvious things, like taking in the baseball games, taking the stadium tours before the games, and soaking up the history of the game in Cooperstown.

But some of the not so obvious things are taking in other sites that our destinations have to offer. Walk the Freedom Trail, visit a museum, or take the duck tour of the city in Boston. See the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, go to the Top of the Rock at Rockefeller Plaza, or shop Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. Pick up collector's items, visit the out of the way bistros, or just enjoy the nostalgic feeling and the slower pace of the village of Cooperstown.

Whatever your passion, we'll guide you through a tour that will be the experience of a lifetime!

Tags: stadium tours, Citi Field, Fenway Park, Yankee Stadium, hall of fame, Cooperstown

The Bucket List Winners Are...

Posted by Big League Tours on Wed, Nov 23, 2011 @ 04:45 PM

November 11, 2011 - Thanks to everyone for taking our survey and letting us know what is on your baseball bucket list. We will be using the info to put together our baseball vacation packages for 2012 and look forward to releasing our schedule very soon.Green Monster at Fenway Park

Here are 10 of the top baseball destinations as selected by you.
1.  Fenway Park                                                
2.  Yankee Stadium
3.  Baseball Hall of Fame
4.  Miller Park
5.  Wrigley Field
6.  Oriole Park at Camden Yards
7.  Target Field
8.  Citi Field
9.  AT&T Ballpark
10.  Busch Stadium

Have another favorite or stadium that's still on your bucket list to visit? Drop us a comment and let us know. We'd love to hear from you!

Tags: Citi Field, Miller Park, bucket list, baseball vacation package, Fenway Park, Wrigley Field, AT&T Park, Busch Stadium, Yankee Stadium, Target Field, hall of fame, Baseball, Oriole Park, Camden Yards

Next Stop: Citi Field

Posted by Big League Tours on Wed, Nov 23, 2011 @ 02:30 PM

July 1, 2011 - After meeting Art Shamsky in Midtown Manhattan, our group headed out to Citi Field to see the Mets host the Angels. It's always interesting to see the reaction of our travelers as we reach the Mets' new ballpark. View from our seats at Citi Field

So much raquet is made about Yankee Stadium, the history and of the team, the House That Ruth Built, etc., etc. But the fact is, almost everyone who has been to the new Yankee Stadium and then walks into Citi, says, "Now this is a ballpark."

Comparing the two baseball stadiums, one notices things like the rich colors at Citi Field versus the lack of color at Yankee Stadium. The Mets' outfield wall and centerfield walkway provide interesting sitelines (at least to our guests in the lower-level and between the bases...). And the throwback appearance with the nod to Ebbets Field make Citi Field look and feel like a ballpark whereas Yankee Stadium looks like a mammoth municipal building.

Don't get me wrong. I love seeing games at Yankee Stadium. The team's rich history and great players, makes every baseball fan respect their success. What I am pointing out, however, is that when in New York, whether for work, vacation, or specifically on a baseball road trip, fans should make their way to Citi Field. They won't be disappointed.

Tags: Citi Field, baseball road trips, New York, baseball stadiums, Yankee Stadium, Angels, Baseball, Mets