Friday, January 23, 2009

First Night of TwinsFest

My wife and older son (pictured) arrived at the Metrodome at 3:30 this afternoon and survived sub-zero wind chills for two hours until the doors opened. There were about 50 people in line in front of them, and there were two gates at the Dome that had lines. Once the doors opened at 5:30, they ran to the line where Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau were going to be signing at 7:00.

When they got there, they found that there were already at least 200 people in line. How could that be? They waited, and waited and waited, as people let their friends get in line too. The staff didn't appear to do too much to prevent this, deferring to the people in line to try to police the "budgers". Well, they never did get the autographs as they ran out of time.

Rumor has it, that the vendors that sell cards and memorabilia on TwinsFest, get there early to set up, and their "helpers" go up and get in these lines before the doors to the Dome even open. I overheard one person who said he was first in line outside the Dome, and when he got to the line inside, there were already 100 people there! This sure doesn't seem fair, and definitely doesn't make us want to spend any money with the vendors there, so we won't! Sure, the vendors are all selling Mauer and Morneau autographs because they got to get in line early.

So, a very disappointed, cold little boy missed the first two sessions of autographs without getting a single one. And an angry, cold mother of a cold little boy is not happy at all!

My younger son and I had pretty good luck however. There were three autograph sessions tonight. He and I made it to five different stations in the first two sessions. We got autographs from Nick Blackburn, Jesse Crain, Brendan Harris, Ron Coomer, Denard Span, Bobby Korecky, Brian Buscher, Philip Humber, Matt Macri, Jose Morales, Tony Oliva and Kent Hrbek.

During the last session, my older son and I went through a line with Jim "Mudcat" Grant, Joe Vavra, and Jason Pirdie. This line went very slowly as Mr. Grant signed very neatly and included his nickname on every item. We barely made it through the line before the event closed for the evening. I was starting to get worried that my son might get skunked the whole evening!

Off to bed quickly to get up early for a another full day of TwinsFest. We're not planning on waiting outside tomorrow since the temperature will be below zero when we get there. Hopefully that doesn't prevent my older son from getting Harmon Killebrew who is signing in the first session.

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