A Royal Tour
By Stadium Journey - June 22, 2010
How often do you make it to a game? Is it once a year? Once a month? Once a week? If you’re Gary Herman, you make it to a live sporting event almost every single day. In fact, he has averaged 350 games a year over the last 14 years. On top of that, he’s able to maintain a blog, Royalty Tours USA where he chronicles his travels.
It’s an exhausting pace. One that even the most ardent sports traveler becomes awestruck by. We recently had a chance to interview Gary, to find out how he does it.
Stadium Journey (SJ): It’s absolutely amazing that you’ve been able to attend so many games over such a long period of time. How do you maintain this pace?
Gary Herman (GH): First and foremost, I live in New York City which gives me a built in advantage. There are so many teams in the area it's not hard to see many live sporting events. I just take it to the utmost extreme. In addition, within a 250 mile radius here in the Northeast we have a number of teams within driving distance.
Having a solid foundation in place through years of practice and experience, I've been able to attend more and more events as time as gone on. Needless to say, you need to have a favorable schedule of events to work with. Since I work M-F 8:30-5:30 in an office in Midtown Manhattan and I have weekends off that makes a big difference as well.
SJ: Don’t you ever get tired?
GH: Yes, I'm a human being so of course I get tired. For the most part, I enjoy what I'm doing so I'm able to overcome the sluggishness most of the time. Trust me, there are days I'm “unexhaustedly tired” as I like to say. Depending on the cards I'm dealt, I try my very best to incorporate a night off which I use to rest up and recharge the batteries so to speak.
I do my very best to plan accordingly so I can be up to the task of doing the driving. I love to drive especially when I get out of NYC and the open road. Lately I've been shutting my eyes during my lunch break to help stay as fresh as possible for work and play. It's been a big help.
SJ: What’s your favorite place to see a game?
GH: I love Wrigley Field. Wrigley is truly baseball heaven. Fenway is nice but there's no place like the friendly confines. I've been to 72 Cub games. I've gone there every year at least once since 1988.
For a building that was built almost 100 years ago the leg room in that place is amazing. Like most buildings old or new, there are many bad seats. I love to sit right behind home plate when I go to a baseball game. In Wrigley, right under the press box in the upper deck is as good as it gets. The Bricks and the Ivy. You just can't beat that unique experience. In addition, it's located right in the middle of a nice neighborhood too.
SJ: What about the worst place to see a game?
GH: I would have to say the Oakland Alameda County Coliseum as it was known when I went there for the first time on July 19, 1984. That was when it was a great ballpark to watch a game despite not having an overhang to shield the sun. Once they renovated it and added Mt. Davis so the Raiders could come back they ruined the ballpark. It's too bad that in this day and age everything is all about corporate business. It's always a money first mentality.
Another ballpark I'm not big on is Comerica Park in Detroit. I was fortunate to see a number of games at Tiger Stadium which was like Wrigley, a jewel of a ballpark. Being that I've been to all the stadiums and arenas, most multiple times, I can find faults with all of them.
SJ: Why are you doing this?
GH: I'm doing what I love most to do, attending live sporting events and traveling all over the country. As a result, I'm staying out of trouble and educating myself at the same time. I have a marketing degree but the best education you can get is by hitting the streets and seeing the country and the world firsthand. Books can only teach so much. You need to apply what you learn in the classroom.
In addition, with all the technology we have these days it's amazing how much you can do. I'm a work in progress when it comes to automation but I'm hitting the ground while I'm on the go.
I recently started my blog back in February. Technology and getting to meet people like yourself are the biggest reasons for me to keep on rolling along.
Most importantly, I'm single and free to roam. Life is short so you have to enjoy it to the fullest. Like everybody else in the world, I have my ups and downs but when I think back on all I've done it's truly an amazing accomplishment. These days my ultimate goal is to make my hobby a business so I can continue doing what I love to do. I need to get a website. For the time being, my blog is a step in the right direction.
I look forward to crossing paths in the future somewhere along the way. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to tell you about myself.
SJ: Thank you Gary. Looking forward to hearing more about your travels as you progress.