I was fortunate enough to attend Twinsfest this past Saturday with my mother. The last time I had been at the event it was held in the Metrodome (RIP), and I was skeptical at how well the event could be held indoors at Target Field. However, aside from the inevitable lines for elevators, the venue actually acquitted itself quite well.
Instead of a long and rambling narrative, I’ve broken the experience down into a nice “top ten” list. Below, you’ll find my favorite ten moments/activities from my day at Twinsfest. I hope that anyone else who attended will discuss their favorite parts in the comment section!
10. Snapping a free picture with prospect Brent Rooker
One of the free opportunities at Twinsfest, player picture sessions are quite pleasant. However, you do feel for a guy for having to smile at the camera over and over again.
9. Picking up a “Grab Bag”
For $30, you had the opportunity to buy a former giveaway backpack full of leftover giveaway items from the season. You were guaranteed one of the Joe Mauer bobblehead series. Mom and I pulled the “Final Game” and “MVP” Mauer bobbleheads out of one bag, as well as a Minnesota United-edition Twins cap and a 2019 homer hankie.
8. Seeing a number of players walking from point to point while standing in line
While standing in line for autographs (which we did a lot of), it was very fun to see a number of familiar faces walking by. I was being followed by Jorge Polanco for a solid 30 seconds without realizing it until he blew past me when some space opened up.
7. The Radio Stage
The Radio Stage is a good way to pass some time at Twinsfest. Hearing the players talk is always interesting, and they also mix in some game shows (like “player feud”) which are quite entertaining.
The new Bombaland exhibit was pretty cool. They had lots of significant memorabilia in it from the historic season, as well as some interactive screens. On the screens, you could click a player’s name and a fireworks-burst of home run trails would go from home plate into the bleachers, according to how many the player hit and where he hit them to.
5. Touring the “Clubhouse of Champions”
Touring the Twins Clubhouse was very interesting. It was awesome being in the same room where the team had spent so many hours over the year. The event also had exhibits set up in the middle, which represented each decade of Twins baseball. A mock living room was set up for each decade, with period memorabilia, furniture, and television sets playing Twins baseball. They also had both World Series trophies on display in the clubhouse.
4. Getting food-shamed by Dick Bremer
Twinsfest highlight:— Jonathan Gamble (@JGambleBaseball) January 27, 2020
Bringing food for myself and my mom to where she was waiting in line for autographs, I see @dbremer_pxp walking towards me.
Bremer looks down at what I'm carrying. Wide-eyed, looks back up at me:
"Well that's a lot of food you got there!"
3. Snapping a selfie with Sergio Romo
Another “waiting-in-line” experience, Sergio Romo was walking by and was willing to snap some selfies with fans. He is truly every bit as happy and nice as he appears to be on the television.
2. Meeting three members of the Bomba Squad
As you’ll see if you inspect the header photo, Mom and I got to meet three players from the 30-homer club of 2019. Mom got her “Bomba Squad” shirt signed by Max Kepler, Eddie Rosario, and Mitch Garver.
1. Getting Johan Santana’s autograph (along with Joe Nathan and Michael Cuddyer)
My personal highlight was getting Johan Santana’s autograph. Santana was the first favorite player I’d ever had, and there was something very fulfilling about finally getting his signature after all these years.
Fulfilled 8-year-old Jonathan's dream by getting Johan Santana's autograph pic.twitter.com/W07wSwdHNZ— Jonathan Gamble (@JGambleBaseball) January 25, 2020
All in all, Twinsfest was a great experience (although not particularly cheap). Did anyone else have similar experiences? Drop your top ten (or 1, or 2, or 5) below!