Good evening and welcome to the Citizens of Natstown page. I am both happy and excited to write my first post on the new website pioneered by TJ and staffed by so many excellent writers and knowledgeable individuals. Citizens of Natstown is an exciting and fun program to be a part of and I am hopeful that we can keep on improving and having fun.
That being said, I will get right into it!
For my Memorial Day weekend, I had decided to take a trip I had always wanted to take in visiting the Nationals Triple-A affiliate, the Syracuse Chiefs. The drive seemed like it would be long and arduous, but I have to admit it was long, but not horribly painful. I left early Saturday morning and arrived at the City of Syracuse in the late afternoon. I was able to check in at the hotel, then was determined to find a place to refuel and sample a fine brew.
One thing you cannot have too many of are knowledgeable friends. A quick text message returned a great suggestion for both food and brews. A friend suggested I try Syracuse Suds, a local Tavern that had microbrews and some good bar food. I ordered the Microbrew IPA from Syracuse Suds and I was not disappointed. It was excellent! I later received my Buffalo Chicken Sandwich and it was, well a delicious Buffalo Chicken Sandwich. I would have possibly tried to find a unique food place and tried some fine local eats, but I was honestly more interested in trying a local brew and I was quite antsy to get to Alliance Bank Stadium. I have to say, the bar keepers at Syracuse Suds are fine baseball fans, as I requested the Nationals game to be put on while I was there and they were more than happy to oblige. Upon doing so, the bar manager spoke with me briefly about baseball and talked about all his favorite players and teams.
After finishing dinner, I continued on to Alliance Bank Stadium. Perhaps it was because I was focused on finding my exit in Syracuse, but I somehow missed the rather impressively large ballpark (Alliance Bank Stadium is visible from the highway). While pulling into the parking lot I was quite surprised how large the park was, it was like it was a small big league park. Very, Triple-A if you will. Perhaps the part that was the most impressive to me was that the Natmobile was at Alliance Bank Stadium, and I would later find out the Racing Presidents were too. It was like I was still at home in the D.C. Metropolitan area. On the inside, Alliance Bank Stadium is quite beautiful. The grass is perfect; the light blue seats seem to contrast well with the light brown brick. The scoreboard is like a smaller version of the scoreboard at Nationals Park, it is very impressive and the Chiefs put a baseball cartoon on it before the game started, which is in my opinion a brilliant and enjoyable move. Train tracks run behind Alliance Bank Stadium, which I honestly thought would be an annoying distraction when I first heard about it some time ago. I could not have been more wrong; the trains running behind the park and blowing their horns only seem to add to the charm of the ball park.
I now have the honor of saying I have been to every Minor League affiliate of the Washington Nationals, a feat I have been able to accomplish in the last 2 years. One thing I will have to sort out is whether it is the Harrisburg Senators park or the Chiefs park I like better. Both parks are very nice; I can logically conclude the only option will be to take more trips to these parks to decide which I like better.
I definitely recommend a trip to see the Syracuse Chiefs play in their ballpark, Alliance Bank Stadium. It is somewhat of a drive, but in my opinion is well worth the trip!