College World Series Event Guide
Though much attention is given to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament, the College World Series often offers up just as much drama and madness. The event tests the mental and physical strength of some of the most talented ballplayers across the country, and sports fans will be hard pressed to find a more pure display of raw talent in the country. For 60 years, the weeks-long event had been held at the iconic Rosenblatt Stadium in Omaha, Nebraska, but starting in 2011 it moved to its new home at TD Ameritrade Park, a beautiful state-of-the art venue that rivals any major league park.
Though part of the appeal of the CWS was its legendary venue, longtime vistiors will certainly warm up to TD Ameritrade Park as soon as they set foot in it. With a seating capacity of more than 22,000 and has served as the home park of both the Nebraska and Creighton basebal teams.
The College World Series has provided some of the most exciting events in college sports in recent memory. It’s hard to find even a casual baseball fan who doesn’t remember the exciting run that Fresno State went on in 2008. The Bulldogs, a fourth-seeded regional team (which is similar to a 13 seed in March Madness), went on an extraordinary run to win the title, eventually beating the heavily favored University of Georgia in the finals.
The event has also seen some of the best MLB players come through. When Oregon State won back-to-back titles starting in 2006, they were led by future Boston Red Sox favorite Jacoby Ellsbury, who was an All-American in 2005, for one of them. And in 2002, when Texas captured the crown, pitcher Houston Street, who eventually would be a star relief pitcher, was named Most Outstanding Player.
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Any baseball fans making the trek to the middle of the country for the College World Series will certainly be in for a treat. Omaha is a hidden gem inside the U.S. and offers a lot in the way of attractions and events beyond the CWS.
Though college sports certainly dominates the city, it is also a hotbed of music and culture. Specifically, the area is among the most famous R&B locales in the country, and anybody stopping by for the CWS is entering a city rich with tradition. For example, the Dreamland Ballroom was located on the second floor of the famous Jewell Building. Some of the most famous singers of all time have performed at this small venue, including Nat King Cole, Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong.
However, those looking for a more current take on the music scene are in luck as well. There are a slew of indie venues that have risen in popularity over the years. In particular, the Soko Auditorium and the Soko Underground (located beneath it) are home to numerous rock and hip hop shows throughout the course of the year.
Of course, there’s much more to Omaha than just baseball and music, the city offers up some delicious cuisine as well. For instance, a stop in Omaha just would not be complete without a trip to Gorat’s Steak House. The favorite eatery of the many famous people, from Warren Buffett to Martha Stewart, this nearly 70-year-old institution is an Omaha icon.
Though Gorat’s is certainly a historic restaurant, nothing is more stereotypically Omaha than the Reuben sandwich. This classic pastrami dish is believed to have originated in Omaha, and it would just not be a trip to the city without indulging in one of these tasty concoctions.
As a final stop during the College World Series experience, visitors may want to explore some of the many museums and historical sites that that Omaha has to offer. One of the best picks is the Durham Museum, which was created to preserve the history of the western Untied States.
In addition to the Durham Museum, visitors may also want to see the Old Market district. This quaint area has something for everyone, including upscale shopping and art galleries as well local small businesses. Although located in the heart of a modern American city, a walk through the district will transport visitors back centuries to a more simple time.
Before departing from Omaha, individuals must at least take a stroll through the Henry Doorly Zoo, widely regarded as one of the best in the world. Opened in 1894, it has become a Nebraska institution over the last century and has attracted more than 25 million visitors over the last 40 years. The large complex has something for everyone, from big cats, to birds to primates, and remains one of the most affordable attractions in the country.