Royalty Tours USA

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

2014-2015 AHL Schedule

To all my readers and followers,

The 2014-2015 AHL schedule has been released:

Please see the link below for all the details:

http://theahl.com/2014-15-ahl-schedule-unveiled-p193401

If you need any assistance don't hesitate to ask or consult me that's why this blog is here.

If I can make a difference in your life I will, all I ask for is a fair opportunity to do so.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman

Monday, August 25, 2014

Royalty schedule w/o 8/25

Here's the game plan:

Tuesday August 26th Braves at Mets 7:10PM

Wednesday August 27th Braves at Mets 7:10PM

Thursday, August 28th Braves at Mets 7:10PM

Friday August 29th Phillies at Mets 7:10PM

Saturday August 30th Phillies at Mets 7:10PM   
                              
Sunday August 31st Phillies at Mets 1:10PM 
                                 SI Yanks at Cyclones 6PM
         
Check back to see how it played out.

Hope all my readers and followers have a great week.

As always, if you need assistance don't hesitate to ask.

Stay tuned as I plan to continue to write about the highlights of my baseball season in July. Please bear with me as I try to find time to catch up. I keep falling further behind. Please be patient. It will be worth the wait.

If you like to tweet you can follow me on Twitter too. @royaltytoursusa

Furthermore, we can hook up on Facebook and/or Four Square as well.

With all the ways to communicate these days, we should always be in touch.

Remember team work makes the dream work.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman
 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Royalty returns to Wrigley Field & Miller Park over last weekend of June!‏

On Saturday June 28th, after we saw Gio Gonzalez dominate the Cubs in game one of the day/night doubleheader, the King & I went to a place called Deuces & the Diamond Club in Wrigleyville with Tike & Dawn Narry. Tike went there the day before & he said they had great food. Once I heard that, I didn't question the choice. We weren't disappointed either. The King & I had burgers which were excellent. They came with sea salt fries too. We also enjoyed a few beers before headed back to Wrigley Field for game two of the doubleheader.

Tike arranged to get us a block of tickets together in aisle 524 which was just to the right of the press box. We had a nice view of the action despite a slight distraction from a pole that was blocking part of the view. That's the beauty of the old time ballparks from back in the day. We looked around the pole & we saw the game just fine.   

View from Aisle 524
As for the game we saw, the Nationals went on to beat the Cubs, 7-2. With the victory, Blake Treinen got his first major league win. In addition, we did get a visit from a fellow ballpark chaser who came to the game with some friends of his who drove from Toronto. I'm referring to Paul Nieuwland who I arranged to get Yankee & Met tickets for in NYC during the first week of July. It worked out well when he told me he was going to be at that game. As a result, we were able to make the exchange there. Shortly after he left us, the sky opened up & we had a 55 minute rain delay. Even though, we were undercover, we were forced to walk down to the walkway between the seats in the upper level since the rain was blowing so hard thanks to the gutsy winds. Luckily we were able to stay relatively dry. Once the rain cleared out, the game resumed. 
Tarp on the field during rain delay
After the game, we went back to the Flat in Wrigleyville where we spent the night. 

Sunday morning we got up, packed our bags & we all headed to Milwaukee‎ where we went to see the Brewers play the Rockies at Miller Park that afternoon. It should be noted that game was a personal milestone  for Tike. It was his 1,000th live baseball game. I'm glad that we were able to take part in his special occasion.

On the way there, we stopped off at The Point Pancake House for a royal breakfast. Tike & Dawn Narry drove their friends Josh & Stephanie Thurman along with  their son Brendan in a SUV that Tike rented for the day. They followed the King & I there. Scott Bultman who also stayed with us left earlier that morning. He went on his own to Milwaukee because he went to visit his family there before he went to the game. 

As for the breakfast we had, I got a skirt steak skillet which was delicious. It came with scrambled eggs, hash browns, bacon & cheese all mixed together along with a few pancakes. Speaking of pancakes, Dawn ordered them. She was raving how good they were. I was so happy to hear that. Everybody else was satisfied with their generous portions of food as well. Like Tike, I aim to please. 
Skirt Steak Skillet
After we finished eating, we got back into our cars ‎& we drove to Milwaukee. We wound up meeting them at the ballpark because Tike wanted to stop at the airport to see if he could check in their bags first. 

When we got to Miller Park, the lines to go in were out of control. It was Scooter Gennett Bobblehead day for all fans. With that being said, they had a sell out crowd. What a nightmare it was to get inside. Finally after waiting a little bit, we got in.

Tike ‎& Dawn & their friends had seats downstairs while Scott, the King & I decided to sit in the upper level. During the game, Tike came up to visit us. 
View from section 422
As for the game we saw, the Rockies built an early 5-0 lead as they cruised to a 10-4 win over the Brew Crew.

After the game, we were hoping to meet up with Tike again for dinner but we couldn't figure out exactly where the restaurant they were going for dinner was. We wound up near the airport so the King & I decided to eat near there. We saw a place called Beer Belly so we went there instead. It worked out well as I got a pound of crab legs for dinner. The King had a prime rib. After we finished eating, I returned the Chevy Spark I rented for the weekend to Alamo. I only drove 186 miles but it served its purpose as it got us where we wanted to go.

We then headed to the terminal to catch our flight home on Southwest Airlines. Since our flight was leaving around the same time as Tike & Dawn's, we did see them ‎& we said our goodbyes.

Stay tuned as I plan to do a special post that will highlight our adventures in July.

‎Thank you for reading & following along.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Royalty goes to Harry Caray's Restaurant in Chicago!‏

After the King & I went to the Cub game on June 27th at Wrigley Field, we went back to the Flat where we stayed in Wrigleyville. We met up with Scott Bultman as well as Tike & Dawn Narry there. We got refreshed then we all walked over to the subway & we took the train to the loop which is considered downtown if you will in Chicago. We got off ‎& we walked a few blocks to Harry Caray's Restaurant to have dinner. Tike had made a reservation for us. We wound up meeting his friends Josh ‎& Stephanie Thurman along with their son, Brendan who joined us after they spent the day sightseeing. When we walked in, we had a drink by the bar. While doing so, Tike came across a guy he met last year when he was in Chicago. This guy he initially met on Twitter. His name is Joe McCune. He happens to be a San Francisco Giant fan who lives in Chicago. Tike asked the people there if we could have a table for nine instead of eight. That way he could join us for dinner. After a short wait, they were able to accommodate all nine of us. 

As for dinner, we ordered our food which included some different appetizers that consisted of toasted ravioli, calamari & antipasto. As for the main course, I had a chicken parmigiana which came with spaghetti. ‎The King had a ribeye steak on the bone. Tike & Dawn had been there last year too so they knew the food was excellent. Joe is a lawyer he said. He's been there many times. He told us the food choices were outrageous. Whatever you ordered, you couldn't go wrong. When the food arrived, we found that out. It was really a tremendous meal that we had.

In addition, we had some great conversations around the table. We estimated that between all of us that we have seen over 14,000 live sporting events. 

The King & I with a caricature of Harry Caray
After enjoying the food ‎& the company there, we weren't done for the night. After we left the restaurant, Joe who lives in one of the Marina City buildings a few blocks away, took us up to the 60th floor so we could get an aerial view of the City of Chicago. What an unexpected surprise that was. He was more than happy to show us the view. We got to see the Sears Tower, the new Trump Tower as well as an amazing panoramic view of the surrounding areas. We had a beautiful breeze blowing which added to this breath taking experience. If Tike never found this gentleman on Twitter, none of this would have happened. It just proves that if you make an effort to do something in life you never know what can come of it. In this case, a common interest in the Giants lead to guided tour for all of us. I want to personally thank Tike & Joe for making this happen. 

Aerial View of Sears Tower from Marina City in Chicago
After we got back downstairs we said good bye to Joe & the Thurman family for the night. The rest of us walked back to the subway & we took the train back to the Flat to go to sleep.

Stay tuned for a special post that will recap the rest of that memorable weekend in the Midwest.

Thank you for reading & following along.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman

Monday, August 18, 2014

Royalty schedule w/o 8/18

Here's the game plan:

Tuesday August 19th Astros at Yankees 7:05PM

Wednesday August 20th Astros at Yankees 7:05PM

Friday August 22nd White Sox at Yankees 7:05PM

Saturday August 23rd White Sox at Yankees 1:05PM

                                       Cardinals at Phillies 7:05PM

Sunday August 24th White Sox at Yankees 1:05PM 
         
Check back to see how it turned out.

Hope all my readers and followers have a great week.

As always, if you need assistance don't hesitate to ask.

Stay tuned as I plan to continue to write about the highlights of my baseball season in July. Please bear with me as I try to find time to catch up. I keep falling further behind. Please be patient. It will be worth the wait.

If you like to tweet you can follow me on Twitter too. @royaltytoursusa

Furthermore, we can hook up on Facebook and/or Four Square as well.

With all the ways to communicate these days, we should always be in touch.

Remember team work makes the dream work.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman
 

Thursday, August 14, 2014

2014-2015 NBA Schedule

To all my readers and followers,

The 2014-2015 NBA schedule has been released:

Please see the link below for all the details:

http://www.nba.com/gameline/20141028/

If you need any assistance don't hesitate to ask or consult me that's why this blog is here.

If I can make a difference in your life I will, all I ask for is a fair opportunity to do so.

Stay tuned for my upcoming basketball road trips as well as other creative ones that others may be interested in taking.

Thank you for your time and consideration.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Royalty schedule w/o 8/11

Here's the game plan:

Monday August 11th Mets at Phillies 1:05PM

                                   Yankees at Orioles 7:05PM

Tuesday August 12th Nationals at Mets 7:10PM

Wednesday August 13th Nationals at Mets 7:10PM

Thursday August 14th Nationals at Mets 7:10PM

Friday August 15th Cubs at Mets 7:10PM

Saturday August 16th Cubs at Mets 7:10PM

Sunday August 17th Cubs at Mets 1:10PM 
         
Check back to see how it played out.

Hope all my readers and followers have a great week.

As always, if you need assistance don't hesitate to ask.

Stay tuned as I plan to continue to write about the highlights of my baseball season in June. Please bear with me as I try to find time to catch up. I keep falling further behind. Please be patient. It will be worth the wait.

If you like to tweet you can follow me on Twitter too. @royaltytoursusa

Furthermore, we can hook up on Facebook and/or Four Square as well.

With all the ways to communicate these days, we should always be in touch.

Remember team work makes the dream work.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman
 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Royalty catches up with Gio Gonzalez at Wrigley Field at the end of June!‏

When I got to Wrigley Field on Friday, June 27th I was wearing my personalized Gio Gonzalez jersey that he gave me last September at Citi Field proudly. On April 2nd, I saw him warm up in the bullpen before his first start of the season as the Nationals came to Queens again to play the Mets. When he got done, he surprised me by throwing me up the ball he warmed up with. When I walked into the Friendly Confines, I went near the Nationals' bullpen to watch batting practice. I noticed Gio standing in the outfield. I yelled out to him. I thought he heard me. Apparently he didn't. After batting practice ended, I was surprised that he ran into the clubhouse with the rest of his teammates.

After the game, I decided to go out to the right field gate since that's where the Nationals' bus was going to load up from. My pal Scott Bultman who was there the night before told me that Gio didn't take the team bus. Someone told him that. Since Gio was scheduled to pitch game one of the doubleheader Saturday, I figured in order to see him I needed to wait for the team to come out. My persistence usually pays off. After waiting a short time, I noticed some players including Stephen Strasburg who boarded the bus. On the concourse area, I saw Gio standing around talking to a few people. I got his attention. He waved his hand hinting that he'll be out soon. It turned out that he was waiting for a car service to pick him up. 

Me & Gio Gonzalez outside Wrigley Field
After patiently waiting, Gio came out. He came right over to me & he showed me love. He shook my hand & he asked how I was doing. Since he was in a rush I had to make it quick. I got him to personalize the ball he threw me back in April. I told him I'll see him again in August. He told me to look for him Saturday even though he was pitching. True to my word, I did get to see him warm up. I gave him words of encouragement as he got prepared for the task at hand. Apparently, my words of wisdom work wonders. For the fourth straight time that I saw him warm up, he went out & pitched a great game. I wish I could see him pitch in person more often.

Gio Gonzalez warming up at Wrigley Field
Gio shined bright in game one of the day/night doubleheader that Saturday. He threw seven shutout innings as he gave up just two hits while walking two & striking out seven Cubs as he picked up the victory. The Nationals' bullpen combo of Tyler Clippard & Rafael Soriano each threw a scoreless inning to preserve the Curly W.

Being able to see Gio again made my visit complete. He's a down to earth person, I only want to see him do well. Despite his struggles from inflammation in his shoulder, it was nice to see Gio back on the mound where he belongs.

Stay tuned as I will write a special post about the Friday night post game meal we enjoyed.

Thank you for reading & following along.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Royalty enjoys its annual visit to Wrigley Field at the end of June during its 100th Anniversary celebration!‏

On April 23rd, the Cubs played the Arizona Diamondbacks at Wrigley Field. That day was the official anniversary of the first game played there in 1914. With that being said, the Cubs are celebrating all season long by having what refer to as the Party of the Century. Unfortunately for the Cubs & their loyal fan base, there hasn't been much to celebrate over the past century. Sad to say, the last time the Cubs got to the World Series was in 1945. As for the King & I, we've gone there together at least once every year since 1988. Despite their losing history, there's nothing like seeing a baseball game at the Friendly Confines as it's known. However, things are suppose to change next season. Major renovations are in place to face lift the ballpark. We're not looking forward to it but on the positive side, the address will remain the same. As for the on field results, l hope they change too. Time will tell on how things turn out.

Back in September when the schedule was released, I looked it over to see when would be the best time for us to return to Wrigley Field. After thorough analysis, the series against the Nationals at the end of June seemed to be the most logical choice. When they decided sometime in February to make Saturday June 28th a day/night doubleheader that sealed the deal. Their decision was based on potential traffic issues due to a Pride Parade that was scheduled to take place that Sunday. 

With that being said, our friend ‎& fellow roadtripper, Tike Narry who lives in the Bay Area decided to consult his wife Dawn about a possible road trip for that weekend. Last year Tike arranged to rent out a flat in Wrigleyville for him & a bunch of his buddies when they went to Chicago for a similar type weekend. Tike get permission from Dawn so he decided to contact the person who he dealt with last year. When she told him the flat was available for that weekend at the end of June, he asked the King & I if we were interested in joining him. After giving it some thought, we said we would. In addition, our pal Scott Bultman decided to go as well. Tike also had a friend of his, Josh Thurman who came with his wife Stephanie & their son Brendan for the weekend. They wound up staying in the loop which is what they call downtown if you will. They wanted to do more than just spend time at the ballpark. They wanted to walk around & see some of the sites that the Second City had to offer.  

Wrigley Field Marquee
As for the King ‎& I, we flew into Milwaukee Friday morning. We took a flight out of LaGuardia airport on Southwest Airlines. I rented a Chevy Spark, which looked like a matchbox car from Alamo for the weekend. Most importantly, it suited our needs. On the way to Wrigleyville, we stopped off at The Point Pancake House in Gurnee, Illinois for breakfast. When we finished we drove over to the flat that Tike rented for the weekend at 1036 Roscoe Street. Since the King & I usually don't stray towards that part of the neighborhood, we didn't know exactly where that street was. For the most part, we know that area very well. Instead of mapping it out exactly, I decided to contact Tike & Scott. They wound up meeting us a few blocks away then they guided us there. We wound up parking the car in the garage for the weekend. We went inside & we dropped off our bags. Once we got situated, we all walked over to Wrigley Field to see the Cubs host the Washington Nationals that afternoon. It was part of the homestand that they remembered the 1950's.

View from Aisle 420
The King is in the building
As for the game we saw, the Cubs ‎broke a 2-2 tie in the bottom of the fourth inning to take the lead, 4-2. They added three more runs in the bottom of the seventh inning taking advice from their late legendary announcer Harry Caray who was notorious for saying let's get some runs after he sung Take Me Out To The Ballgame. The Cubs went on to beat the Nationals, 7-2. 

After the game, I wound up waiting for the Nationals to come out by the team bus to see if I could see Gio Gonzalez since I didn't get to see him after batting practice.

Stay tuned for a special post that will go into detail about what transpired.

Thank you for reading ‎& following along.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman


Monday, August 4, 2014

Royalty sees the Soundtrack of Summer Tour at Prudential Center!‏

Near the end of March, I got an e-mail from the New Jersey Devils. Since I'm a season ticket holder, they occasionally offer me discounts & presales to upcoming events at the Prudential Center. I usually don't take them up on their offers. It just so happened that they sent me a presale to get tickets to see the Soundtrack of Summer Tour which consisted of Don Felder, former songwriter & guitarist of the Eagles, Styx & one of my favorite rock groups, Foreigner. When I saw they were playing on Thursday, June 26th, I looked at my schedule. I saw that was going to be an off night. I said to myself I want to go. Since I really didn't want to go by myself, I decided to ask my Cousin Andy who's a big music fan if he wanted to join me. He said he would. With that being said, I went ahead & I bought us a pair of tickets in the upper level. Since we both lack the financial resources, we were just happy to get in the building. It was going to be our first concert there.

After waiting a few months, that night finally arrived. After work, I took the Path train out to Newark, NJ. I wound up meeting my Cousin Andy in the Gateway Center which is the walkway attached to Newark Penn Station at 6:40PM. We then walked over to the Prudential Center for the 7PM show. We went inside & we headed upstairs to our seats. When we got up there, we were told that the upper level was going to be closed. With that being said, they gave us an upgrade to cushioned seats in section 17 which was just to right side of the stage. What a great view we had. 

Don Felder
As for the show we saw, the first act was Don Felder who performed some songs with his own band. In addition, he ‎& his band played a good number of Eagles' songs which included Already Gone, One of These Nights, Those Shoes, Witchy Woman, Heartache Tonight, Take It Easy, Life in the Fast Lane as well as the legendary Hotel California. All in all, it was a nice way to start the evening. 

Styx
Secondly, after a short break, we got to hear the band Styx who were popular back in the 70's ‎& into the early 80's. They were lead by guitarist & songwriter Tommy Shaw who wrote some of their classic hits which included Crystal Ball, Blue Collar Man, Too Much Time on my Hands, Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man) as well as Renegade. They also played some of  their other hits, The Grand Illusion, Lady & Come Sail Away. Andy & I recognized many of their songs which made for an awesome time. 

Foreigner
Last but certainly not least, we got to see Foreigner close out the show. I saw them back in the day at Madison Square Garden in 1987. In addition, I got to see them again last year at Citi Field after a Met game. As they say, three times is a charm. That saying held true on this night when I got to see them again. Having seen them last year, I had a good idea of what to expect. 

They started the set with Double Vision, they continued rocking with many of their signature songs which included Juke Box Hero, Feels Like The First Time, Head Games, Cold As Ice, Urgent, Say You Will, I Want To Know What Love Is‎ & Hot Blooded. In addition, we were also treated to a guitar solo by founding member, Mick Jones who has been experiencing health issues lately. 

Overall we got our money's worth ‎& then some. We both had a blast reliving the good old days. These performers are getting old but they still put on a neat show. I'm glad we got to see it. My Cousin couldn't thank me enough for getting him the ticket. As I say, teamwork makes the dream work.

Stay tuned for some special posts that will recap the way I spent the last weekend in June.

Thank you for reading ‎& following along.

Yours truly,

Gary Herman