FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

National Pro Fastpitch Championship

by John Wroblewski

Aug 21, 2018

© DINA KWIT

I spent much of the last two weeks soaking in the last few games of the National Pro Fastpitch season in Rosemont. In addition to enjoying the action from the stands, I also had some fun on the field.

© MARK PANDOCCHI

Prior to one of the games, I joined the Chicago Bandits for a round of batting practice. For a long-time softball player and Bandits fan, this was about as cool as it gets. The players gave me a little cheer as I stepped into the batter’s box with regular catcher Kristyn Sandberg as the pitcher.

Even at half speed (35 mph) from 30 feet, the pitches came in quickly, and I had trouble keeping up. I managed to hit a few nice shots, but my dream of launching one over the fence was not realized. Still, it was a fantastic experience, thanks to Director of Game Day Operations Jourdan Skirha.

JADA RHODES

JENNIE FINCH

A couple games later, multimedal-winning Olympian Jennie Finch held a clinic, and I talked to her about softball returning for the 2020 Olympics and travel. Her legendary career took her all over the world, but she still lists Chicago as a favorite city to visit.

The Bandits finished the season in second place and faced the first-place USSSA Pride in the championship series, played at the Parkway Bank Sports Complex, the Bandits’ home field.

The championship series weekend started with a big tailgate party. I met Rawlings NPF Gold Glove winner Jada Rhodes. She is the third NPF player to win the award, a big step for the league and women’s sports in general.

Unfortunately, the Pride beat the Bandits to become the 2018 NPF champs. The Bandits played well but came up a bit short. It was a tight, exciting series, and both teams should be proud.

BRENNA MOSS
© CHRIS BEJCEK

JESSIE SCROGGINS
© JACK KEENAN

Although the Bandits did not win the NPF championship, they had a very successful season. Several Bandits received individual awards, including NPF Player of the Year Brenna Moss and NPF Rookie of the Year Jessie Scroggins.

I really enjoyed following the Bandits and the NPF over the last few seasons. Despite some growing pains, the NPF continues to put out a fantastic and underappreciated product. The addition of international teams helped bolster the league and attract worldwide fans.

In an era of big salaries and large egos, it is refreshing to see these young, dedicated, passionate athletes who want nothing more than to play the game and grow the sport. Every game, I see young girls waiting to meet the players, hoping that they will one day wear a pro uniform.

© DINA KWIT

© DINA KWIT

I already miss the softball action, and I look forward to next season. I thank GM Toni Calmeyn, Director of Media Relations Jason Lowenthal and the Bandits organization for their hospitality.

— John Wroblewski, online writer

Introducing

FX Excursions

FX Excursions offers the chance for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in destinations around the world.

#globility

Insta Feed
Daily
Oct 27, 2020

6 Reasons to Say #WelcomeBacktoTravel in Charleston, South Carolina

As more destinations around the globe reopen to travelers, we are ready to get back to one of our favorite activities. Join us over the next several weeks as we take you to places around the world saying #WelcomeBacktoTravel. Take a visual journey through Charleston, South Carolina, with us.

Five Things You Need to Know About Punta Cana’s New Finest Resort

Finding a beachfront Punta Cana all-inclusive resort for all ages can be daunting when you want to take home great memories with loved ones but also experience a sophisticated escape. Now, you can have both thanks to a new resort: Finest Punta Cana.

Daily
Oct 27, 2020

Velas Resorts Offers Corporate Buyouts

Velas Resorts’ new Group Takeover Program offers a spin on the classic working vacation. With so many industries going fully remote and leaving the office for good, companies can now take advantage of the flexibility with offers like Velas Resorts Group Takeover Program, guaranteeing exclusive, private use of the hotel for corporate functions, meetings and group events.

Daily
Oct 26, 2020

New Technology Enhances American Airlines Customer Experience

American Airlines is improving its website and app to make it easier for customers to access an electronic wallet, use mobile ID and talk to a virtual assistant in real time.

Adventure Redefined: Volvo Overseas Delivery Program

Are you looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own refined adventure of a lifetime. You can custom order your new Volvo, tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.

Daily
Oct 23, 2020

Atlantis, The Palm Gives Back Cost of PCR Departure Tests to International Guests

Atlantis, The Palm offers global guests staying five or more nights the opportunity to claim back the cost of their respective countries’ departure PCR test now through April 30, 2021. Many travelers are required to present a negative PCR test before arriving in the UAE, and the luxury resort will give back the full cost of the tests for two guests per room to spend as in-resort credit. For a PCR test that costs up to $190, two guests will receive the full amount back to spend at the resort, including food and beverage, spa or waterpark experiences.

eFlyer Deals
Oct 21, 2020

L’Auberge Del Mar Offer Mid-Week Sneakaway

Get away mid-week at L’Auberge Del Mar with its new Mid-Week Sneakaway offer, available when guests book a stay Sunday through Thursday. Extra perks include ocean-view dining, plenty of outdoor activities and more.

The Perfect Fit

According to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy, small businesses create two-thirds of net new jobs and account for nearly 48 percent of the U.S. private sector workforce. And small- and medium-sized businesses outpace all other sectors as one of the fastest-growing in the United States. InterContinental® Hotels Group (IHG) goes above and beyond to create opportunities for this segment with its IHG® Business Edge program, voted Best Small- to Mid-Sized Business Program in Global Traveler’s 2019 GT Tested Reader Survey awards.

Class Act 2020
Oct 21, 2020

Alliance-Branded Lounges Bring Benefits to Airports, Airlines and Customers

Premium travelers know the benefits of holding a first- or business- class ticket extend beyond those front-of-the-craft cabins boasting lie-flat seats, fine dining and top-shelf wines and liquors. Yes, extra baggage allowances and access to priority check-in, security, boarding and luggage retrieval also make the travel experience more pleasant. Perhaps the perk experienced flyers most appreciate, however, is access to airport lounges.