Saturday, October 29, 2005

Chicago White Sox - October 2005

I was at the Holiday Inn Chicago - Mart Plaza giving a talk to an industry trade group on Friday, October 28, 2005. It was, without any doubt, exciting to experience the energy in Chicago after the White Sox won the 2005 World Series on Wednesday evening. To celebrate their first World Series since 1917, the city sponsored a parade on Friday; this public event attracted tens of thousands of fans who turned out to see what was referred to in the media as a "giant block party". The team rode in double-decker buses from US Cellular Field through several neighborhoods where fans lined the streets leading to the downtown loop cheering, waving and saluting the new world champions of baseball.

The White Sox won the 2005 World Series over the Houston Astros by a sweep.

Game 1 - October 22, @ Chicago, CWS 5 - HOU 3
Game 2 - October 23, @ Chicago, CWS 7 - HOU 6
Game 3 - October 25, @ Houston, CWS 7 - HOU 5
Game 4 - October 26, @ Houston, CWS 1 - HOU 0

I have enjoyed the experience of watching two White Sox games in person; once in 2003 and again in 2004, both at US Cellular Field, previously Comiskey Park, on Chicago's southside. In 2003 the Sox played the Yankees and I had seats directly behind home plate and saw Derek Jeter, the popular short stop for the Yankees batting several times. I was not more than 20 yards from him. On a wacky side note, as I was leaving the stadium, I ran into Jerry Springer, the popular, but controversial Chicago based talk show host and former mayor of Cincinnati. I politely shook hands and he signed my ticket. The ticket is dated September 23, 2003, game 80, box 130, row 5, seat 5. It was a 7:05 pm game. I recently read where Derek Jeter made $19,600,000 in base salary for 2005. Not a bad year!

In 2004, my second experience seeing the White Sox, they played the Minnesota Twins. This was a unique in that I took the subway to US Cellular Field which was very cool. If you have never done this, it is an absolute "must" Chicago sports experience. You can catch the subway at various places. The subway which runs "under ground" is not to be confused with the Chicago "L" that runs "above ground", i.e. "elevated" which is where the nickname "L" comes from.

I normally stay in the Gold Coast which is the area around the Hancock Building. In this area you can catch the subway at State & Chicago, this stop is marked as "Chicago" (Red Line) on the train maps. You take the train to the "Sox/35th St." stop. You'll come up the stairs and the ball park will be a brief 5 minute walk. On the way, you'll be entertained by street artists, vendors hawking their wares and people enjoying the spirit of the event. As you return to the Gold Coast, the (CTA) Chicago Transit Authority, which is our nation's second largest public transportation system, has several trains cars attached, all heading north and waiting for White Sox fans to board. Your return back will include every kind of entertainment you might imagine on a train packed like sardines of wild Chicago White Sox fans. It's one of the best experiences you can have.

For articles about the White Sox celebration visit the Chicago Tribune website.