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U.S. TAPpular Field

August 20, 2011

The Trouvais family helped set this whole thing up, so they get to be the first pic in this post.

TAP has been all over the world.  We’ve climbed a mountain in the Bavarian Alps, we’ve cruised around the Mediterranean Sea, we’ve walked through a WWII concentration camp, watched prayer time in a Turkish mosque, wandered the marketplace in Africa, sat in a bull fighting ring, held a meeting on a beach in Portugal, stood next to Big Ben, listened to a band in a real Irish Pub, and even gazed up at the ceiling in the Sistine Chapel.

This week, however, TAP took it’s shortest trip yet.  About 40 of us took that long trek up I-55 to watch the Chicago White Sox take on the Cleveland Indians at Comiskey Park – sorry, I can’t get into that phone company name (and just so you know, in my mind it’s still the Sears Tower, and it always will be).

The Sharp family enjoyed the night.

For Sox fans it wasn’t a great game.  The South Side boys fell to the Tribe 4-1, and it didn’t even look pretty.  For baseball fans though, it was a great game.  We got to see two fantastic pitchers, Cleveland’s all-star pitcher Fausto Carmona and Chicago’s ace Mark Buehrle (which is a ridiculous way to spell Burly).  And even if you weren’t a huge baseball fan, folks from Minooka and Channahon are already used to rooting for Indians, so maybe all of them we happy when Cleveland won the game.

Not only was it a great time for all the folks that came to the game (Mr. Curtis with his wife and boys, Hannah Schram and her family, the Sharp family, the Schumal family, the Trouvais family, the Koskinski family, and the Cortesi’s brought along 96 kids including the Burjek boys), but it was also a fantastic fund  raiser for the group.

Ben, Drew, Bobby, and Mark doing a PSA for the negative effects of too much cotton candy.

Our seats were up in the upper deck, along the third baseline, and they offered a pretty good view of the action, and even though I’m a Cubs fan, I will readily admit that the food at The Cell is awesome.  I can’t go to a ballgame without gorging myself on ballpark fare, so it was a good thing each of us got a food ticket for a free hot dog, bag of chips, and drink as part of the package.  I managed to also stuff myself with a bratwurst loaded with sauerkraut.  In our section alone, I saw TAP folks enjoying nachos, popcorn, fries, pretzels, and Drew Burjek must have eaten 41 of these strange little cups of… well, I actually have no idea what was in that cup, but it made his teeth kinda blue.

Hannah and her family didn't have any cotton candy.

Not only that, but some of our kids grabbed up some cool souvenirs.  No, no one in our group got a foul ball, but I did see some of the kids got some cool hats and t-shirts to remember the day, and of course we took a ton of pictures – because those are the best souvenirs.

One of the best part, to me, was seeing a few of the kids from our Spain trip again.  Usually after they travel with us, they move on to high school and forget about Mr. Curtis and don’t ever visit the little folks at Minooka TAP, so it was great to talk to Tara and Andra again.  What I liked even better though, was seeing some of the Japan travelers and how they act when they’re out in public

That's a whole heck of a lot of Cortesis.

places – Ben, Mark, Drew, Bobby, and Hannah (and a whole slew of brothers and sisters) were all fantastic – they had fun, laughed, played around, and all appeared to be the perfect kind of kid to take on a TAP trip.

I think the absolute highlight of the night, though, was when someone’s little brother asked me, “Mr. Curtis, where is TAP going when I’m in 8th grade?”  He looked to be about 7 years old, so I couldn’t tell him where we’ll travel in 2018 just yet, but I LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVE that TAP seems to have become a family tradition for some of us.

Mr. Curtis only brought three boys. He called the evening "Keeping Up With the Cortesis."

Speaking of traditions… since the Sox event was so much fun, and made a good chunk of money for the group, we plan to do it again in the spring.  This whole thing wouldn’t have been possible without Mrs. Trouvais and her contacts at The Cell, so if anyone else has friends or connections with the Cubs, the Bulls, or the Hawks… maybe TAP could travel back to Chicago sometime.

One last time, not to bother the Sox fans, but to show my love for Minooka sports – Go Indians!!!

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