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Sports tours

Courtesy Sports TravelerSports Traveler
Although Sports Traveler is based in Chicago, owner Annbritt Stengele has a soft spot for the Dallas Cowboys.

“I’m a huge fan,” she said. “Taking people from around the globe to a game is how we started 13 years ago, and today we are the official sports package provider for Experience Arlington, the convention and visitors bureau in the city where the Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium is located.”

In addition to taking in a Cowboys game, Sports Traveler groups also enjoy a tailgate party before kickoff, where a former player is guaranteed to make an appearance.

“We serve brisket and all the sides — it’s tradition,” Stengele said.

Members of the group also enjoy a guided stadium tour in which most choose to pose on the famous star in the center of the field.

“Our locker rooms tour includes the one for the Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders — people love that,” she added.

But Stengele is also loyal to the five major sports teams in Chicago, and she caters to those who want to be part of game day excitement.

“For a Cubs game, we offer a tour of historic Wrigley Field that includes the locker rooms,” she said. “When joining us for a Bears game, you are given rock star treatment in a decked-out bus with catering and televisions.”

Sports Traveler also offers tours and tickets to figure skating, boxing and most sporting events. At the Kentucky Derby, guests not only enjoy royal treatment on Derby Day but also a horse farm tour in nearby Lexington.

Sports Travel and Tours

It’s good to have a strategic partnership with two sports halls of fame, according to Jay Smith, president of Sports Travel and Tours in Hartfield, Massachusetts.

“When you travel with us to the annual induction ceremonies at the Football Hall of Fame in Canton or the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, you get the VIP treatment that sports fans can only dream about,” he said.

The weekend festival in Canton offers three days of events, including a Gold Jacket Ceremony that is closed to the general public; the induction ceremony and enshrinement parties surrounding that ceremony; and a game day roundtable, where the inductees sit on stage and talk about their lives and their playing days.

In Cooperstown, a town Smith described as “a baseball fan’s heaven,” the group is invited to the welcome reception and induction ceremony. “They also get on Doubleday Field, the place where baseball began,” he said.

Bank groups typically hit a home run with their baseball fans when hopping on Sports Travel and Tours’ Baseball Road Trip Program, a three- to 10-day trek to this country’s greatest ballparks to see a game.

“We offer this program on a regional basis, and you can choose to be part of the program for as much as you want,” Smith explained. “After being a part of one of these programs for a few days, I had one man tell me that he thought he died and went to heaven.

“These games are in fantastic cities, and since games only take up three hours of the day, it offers time to explore these destinations.”

Hockey, tennis, golf, horse racing and nearly every major sporting event are also part of the company’s offerings.