GameDay: Road Trippin’

I’ve been on a ton of road trips the last couple of weeks.  Wichita, Des Moines, Minneapolis, and Manhattan all were recorded in the log book.  I’ve noticed some things on the road and want to share it with you.  From what to eat to how to beat the casino, these tips will help you get more out of your college football road trip.  I’ve heard of people road tripping every week for football and dismissed them as being crazy.   The last month’s events just made me a little crazy for the road.

Food is the most important thing while road tripping.  If you hit the road to watch your team, hit up the local fare only.  Sure it’s great that they built a Chipotle in your small ass college town, but there is some nook joint that fries up food 10 times better.  Use the power of Google and find them.  Wichita opened my eyes to cake donuts with the Donut Hole.  Manhattan had the very tastiest of Cajun cooking in the Hibachi Hut.  Once you go past Des Moines going north on I-35 the Kum & Go‘s sport deep-fried cheese curds.  That’s right, even gas stations have choice local selections.

This may not be true for every state, but my time in and through Iowa opened me up to some casino action.  If you find yourself on the road and you see a giant flashing sign for gambling, go ahead and step on in.  But don’t bet your tailgate money.  Take out about 20 to 40 bucks and expect to lose it.  Now depending on the type of day, you may be stuck with slots or you can take advantage of table games.  Diamond Joe’s has tables but they open later in the day.  I broke even there.  Terrible’s Lakeside Casino is the same way and I won about 40 there.

So you know by now I like to make frequent stops.  It’s not for touristy caves but for food, gas,and gambling.  You may have some friends to see along the way but keep the main three stopping points in mind.  While you are gassing up, get plenty of drinks.  Road drinks keep up awake and hydrated.  Because of that, pee breaks are a must, which also help stretch the legs out on a good periodic rate.  I like to bring a cooler with foam bricks to keep the drinks cold. It doesn’t matter what type of drink you have, just make sure you make the round trip safely.

Yes, that’s right road beer can be done, or in my case road Joose.  When you are purchasing drinks, keep the local food fare point in mind.  Some brewerys and bottlers distribute on a weird plan.  Wichita has the Tallgrass family of beer as well as some Colorado favorites.  Michelob comes from St. Louis but their Michelob Golden Light delivers up north and not in Kansas City.  I came back from Minneapolis with that and a Schell’s sampler pack.  Again much like the food, you can get Bud Light there but you want to get what the locals drink, locally.

The Manhattan trip was to most interesting to me in terms of college football.  I knocked a half day by working late the nights before and hit the road with my lady around 2 pm.  I-70 is the almost straight shot and I saw fans with purple and red magnets along the way.  Please cheer and boo accordingly.  The smack talk started on the radio way before the game and it’s acceptable to continue it on the road, safely.  The migration from Kansas City to Manhattan ended up being faster than the rest of the road trips and the drive back was just as communal.  I get why people can do that every week.  It’s like one big happy family road trip.

So will you see me on the road again this year?  Maybe just one more trip.  The last month has been brutal, but fun too.  I’ve cleared out all the great bars in the area and the road trip experience may just put my wheels down more and more for the years to come.  Now that I’m an expert of the road, the prospect seems much more real.  I hope you enjoy these tips and if I see you on the road, give me a honk.