Life in Oregon’s Capital
Thought we would take a quick look at the stuff off the diamond during the trip to Salem-Keizer, the first road swing of the year for the Boise Hawks.
HOTEL – the team stays at the Comfort Suites, a very nice hotel with clean comfortable rooms (pictured left) – great continental breakfast, and cookies at night. Definitely in the top tier of hotels in the league. Unfortunately, the location is a boon for players looking for places to eat after the game.
FOOD – as mentioned above, not many options – as a 1/2 mile down the road is a Denny’s (which following last nights win, was slammed at 12:15 AM when the team arrived – taking nearly 90 minutes to get food). Players can walk a mile to a Walmart, Subway, or Panda Express for lunch. Our team driver has made it a ritual to take the guys to Applebee’s (when they are open) for a postgame meal. Two other great options if one has a car – the Ram Restaurant and Brewery (same as in Boise), which has a great Sunday happy hour, and the Golden Dragon, which has ridiculously good food.
BALLPARK – most of you know how critical I have been over the years on the Salem-Keizer franchise, but believe it or not, I do have friends within the organization. PA Announcer Michael Trevino does a really good job (there are some fabulous PA guys in the league) and is hillarious – plus you know where to get gum if you need it at the park. Giants video coordinator Norm Ordaz his a riot and always has a wealth of knowledge, and Operations Manager Rick Nelson is always prompt (and has me the attendance count in the 7th inning every night, which is outstanding). I have never been a fan of the radio booth and never will – and despite all of Jerry Howard’s pestering of fans, they always find a way to get into the crowd mike (AKA the Drunk Guy on Friday). A thumbs down in the clubhouse this year, where the coaching staff did not receive a postgame meal during the entire series – the first time in eight years I’ve ever seen that.
CONDIMENT BAR: My Best of the Northwest League in 2012 will feature the Condiment Bar at each of the eight stadiums – starting at Volcanoes Stadium. S-K has improved their selection over the years, with thick cut pickles, diced onions, sauerkraut, and jalapenos for the fans, along with the typical ketchup and mustard. However, kudos to the Volcanoes for their relish – a really dilly relish that is OUTSTANDING. Maybe the best relish in the league (I’ll have to wait till we get to Vancouver to see – the relish at the Nat is pretty good too)