Posted: March 25, 2013
Written by: Guest Blogger
My husband surprised me with tickets to the inaugural race at Kansas Speedway, and I had no idea what to expect since I had never really been a racing fan. Let me just say it was a BLAST! We have now been season ticket holders ever since that day. Race weekends at Kansas Speedway are a time to laugh with friends, eat good tailgating food, challenge each other to foolish games, have a drink or two, and talk or argue about the excitement of the upcoming race.
We are early arrivers; getting to the parking lot at 7 am to set up our tailgating area around our bus. YES, we have a tailgating bus. It is not pretty and oh the stories the bus could tell, but it is a great way to get everyone out to the track and it has a clean bathroom! Upon arrival we get the turkey fryer rumbling with boiling water so we can start our breakfast omelets and let the games begin – ladder golf, corn hole, or anything new we come across during the year. The guys hoist the flags on the flag pole and stand on top of the bus to watch the traffic start rolling in. We love watching the sea of flags start going up and by race time the parking lot has an atmosphere you cannot explain until you experience it for yourself.
We always meet someone new each year as we are tailgating. We share stories of our bus, find out where everyone is from, and just have a good time. We have never met anyone unfriendly or unwilling to strike up a conversation at the track!
There is so much to do at the Kansas Speedway from tailgating, walking around to see the Army vehicles, or watching a live taping of Speed. We have done the Fan Walk experience and walked through the garages before the checkered flag drops as well as attended pre-concert festivities on the track. There is always something to do for everyone at the track. The fly over’s are always great! And, the rumble in your chest when the cars start their engines is like no other experience; not even a rock concert.
If you are going to be in town longer than the race weekend there is much more to do around the track; shop the Legends stores, eat at any of the delicious restaurants across the street, try your luck at the Hollywood Casino and eat at the Turn2Sports Bar and Restaurant (it has an excellent view of the track and outside tables) or try one of the other great dining experiences they offer.
Whatever you choose to do at the track and however long you are in town, the Kansas Speedway is the track that will blow you away! Hold on tight.
Lisa Hughes is a children’s services specialist for Johnson County and an avid race fan.
Plan your race weekend at the Kansas Speedway now – buy tickets and book a hotel room.
Posted: February 26, 2013
Written by: Justin S.
We are less than a month away from March, which is a month that gets a lot of outdoor sports in our area started. The soccer season will be in kicking into full gear, the baseball and fastpitch season will be in full swing and hopefully there is a day or two where I can get the golf clubs out and get on a course!
It is also the month commonly known as “March Madness” because of basketball championships at all levels are played throughout the month to determine who are the best teams in their respective states, conferences and divisions.
Each year at Municipal Auditorium in downtown Kansas City is home to the NAIA Men’s Division I National Basketball Championship. This year’s championship will be March 13-19 with 31 games in just six days.
The Overland Park Sports Alliance had the opportunity to be a part of the championship last year by partnering with the Ritz Charles and participating in the Honorary Coaches Program. It gave us the opportunity to be an honorary coach with one of the teams, and it was a firsthand, all-access pass with a team for as long as they were in the tournament. It was a sponsorship opportunity that had a great impact in many ways, both personally and within our office that you couldn’t put a price tag on. We had an opportunity to be with a team from New Orleans and the coaching staff and players were truly a class act and carried themselves in a very professional manner during their time in our area. We got a chance to share the experience with them in being one of the top 32 teams in the country to make it as far as they did to the tournament.
This year, our office will again take part in the Honorary Coaches program and there are other Overland Park businesses that are becoming a part of this championship as well. The Fieldhouse of Kansas City is partnering up with the NAIA on a number of things with for the event including having some of the teams reserve practice time at their state-of-the-art facility. Agape Hoops Productions is hosting a youth basketball tournament called the NAIA Champions Weekend that will take place at The Fieldhouse of Kansas City and on the Missouri side as well. Cinzetti’s is currently working with the NAIA in looking at what opportunities maybe there for them to partner.
This is a great basketball tournament that has a lot of opportunities for local businesses in Overland Park and the metro area to showcase themselves by becoming more involved with the event and supporting the for the NAIA (based in KC).
If anything else, I would encourage you to attend some or all of the games at this year’s event!
Posted: October 9, 2012
Written by: Kelly P.
I recently had the pleasure of trying a new BBQ restaurant in Overland Park. I know there are many choices for BBQ in this area, but I am always on the look-out for a new BBQ place that is to my liking.
Last week one of my associates mentioned a new BBQ Restaurant that she was placing in our upcoming 2013 Visitors Guide. The name was Jon Russell’s Barbeque.
First we checked out the web site, www.jonrussellbbq.com, to do some research and check out the menu. Impressive to say the least. These guys have won the American Royal Grand Champion 1992 Invitation, Reserve Grand Champion 1991 Invitational, and a bunch of regional state awards. Check out my pictures for the wall of fame they have in the restaurant it is loaded with ribbons and trophies. Now that we know these guys can cook time to head off to the restaurant, which is located in front of the new Fieldhouse of KC (formerlyPepsi Ice Midwest) on 135th street in Overland Park. The address is 12094 W 135th Street, Overland Park, KS or give them a call at 913-213-6944.
We arrive to a warm greeting from the gal at the counter and a great aroma coming from the kitchen. The restaurant is a little small, but they do have a great outdoor area that we sat at. Knowing that these guys won the Grand Champion Award at the American Royal made my decision easy. The Grand Champion Combo Platter with ribs, sausage, and burnt ends. It also came with a choice of many sides, but I got the pit beans and fries. All of it what I expected out of a Grand Champion…..delicious!
If you are a visual person, then please check out my photos and then head to Jon Russell BBQ you won’t be disappointed!