Friday, August 1, 2014

Minneapolis and Boston on Columbus Day Weekend

There are two stadiums that I must visit this NFL season: Levi's Stadium in Santa Clara, the new home of the 49ers, and TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, where the Vikings will play for two seasons while a new facility is built on the site of the Metrodome. These are the two venues that will be used for NFL games that I have yet to visit and of course, along with keeping up my Club 122 membership,  I need to update my best-selling NFL Road Trip book (called the Ultimate Football Road Trip to avoid lawsuits) for 2015.

So I'll be going to the Bay Area in December when the 49ers host the Chargers on Saturday, December 20 and the Bills visit the Raiders on the following day. But it took me a while to figure out which Vikings game was the best option. Initially, I had settled on a late November contest against the Panthers with the Wild taking on the Blues on the Saturday night. But then my buddy Eddie suggested the weekend of October 11th, which happened to be a long weekend here in the US for Columbus Day.  The Golden Gophers host Northwestern on the Saturday while the Vikings take on the Lions on the Sunday. Of course, being a long weekend, flights are relatively expensive, so I decided to cut the cost a bit by booking a one-way ticket from Newark to Minneapolis on miles. As an aside, if you are an Aeroplan member, book tickets in other countries to avoid Air Canada's ridiculous fuel surcharges on award tickets.

The return flight was a bit trickier though, with limited choices on miles. There were some non-stop flights early in the morning but the more I looked into it, I realized that my options to get back to New York were limited and expensive. Then I had a "eureka" moment. Columbus Day means afternoon sporting events. A quick check of the NHL schedule showed the Bruins hosting the Avalanche in a 1 pm start. It didn't take me long to find a flight from MSP to BOS in the morning and then another flight from BOS to EWR in the evening, all for a lot less than a direct flight. It is only 45 minutes from the airport to TD Garden by transit, so not a problem getting to the game and then back to the airport. The only problem is I will have to travel very light to get into the rink. It will be a crazy weekend, but one I am looking forward to very much. As always, updates and recaps will be posted here.



1 comment:

  1. Hmm. I have to check my schedule as I may be able to go to Boston on Columbus Day. Saw the Avs there a few years ago on the same day as they did not come in to NYC or Philly that season.