We LOVE taking people to their first NFL games.
The energy of the building, the roar of the crowd, it's all new sensory for sports fans getting to finally check that coveted experience off their list.
But for Chiefs fanatic Chantalle from Kāneʻohe, there was much more in store for her first time when she came with us on the Hawaii Sports Fans AFC Championship VIP Tour:
The setting was Kansas City, Missouri, a town I've now visited eight times in the last two years. KC has quickly become one of my favorite places to visit as I discover more and more gems every time I come back.
I wanted to give Chantalle the best experience she could have in that town, even if we only had one full day.
And boy, did we have a DAY!
From shopping to photo ops to the BEST BBQ on the planet, there was so much to do even before seeing the Chiefs advance to only their 4th Super Bowl in team history.
You've probably heard of Kansas City BBQ. Competitive is the best way I like to put it as the best chefs in town all vie to be Number One, making way for some of the best ribs, brisket, burnt ends...OK, anymore and I'll just get hungry again.
Jack Stack has become a staple, so I had to make sure she had some of that deliciousness, of course. But Chef J's is one of the hottest on the scene right now. Naturally, we had to do both.
Chef J is opened for mere hours a week because of how fast they run out. We made sure we got right in there at opening. They ended up cutting he line off only 30 minutes after opening! The food was BOMB, no wonder.
Chantalle got her shopping in at Made in KC - featuring all kinds of products from Local artisans - to Rally House, a fixture in the Midwest selling wall-to-all apparel and anything else with teams' logos on them. These are must-stops for me every time I visit.
We took lots of photos all over this town, which is full of murals (so artsy in fact, it's like another Portland), and headed over to Union Station, the epicenter of activity and so much history in KC.
After seeing her Chiefs move on to the Super Bowl in a game they've only played in six times in its over 50 year history, Chantalle got a taste of Town Topic, the quintessential late night joint serving many a postgame hamburger, a place that has become my go-to tradition.
I also gotta shout out Jenny, who joined us for her second HSF tour, after traveling to North Carolina to watch UH Men's Volleyball play matches all over the state. We love her dedication to sports travel and the light that she brings whenever she's on tour with us. She landed right before we headed to the tailgate, enjoying BBQ, the Chiefs and a Super Bowl bound celebration, the first time in her life.
As a Chiefs die-hard for over 30 years myself, I took special pride in making this VIP tour a reality. Even if it's just one person, to be able to change their life forever gives me immense pleasure.
I love traveling, I love sports, and I love sharing it with all of you. Or even just one or two of you. That's the Hawaii Sports Fans difference.
See you on the next one!