I was super jealous of the Padres fans that were invited to the VIP opening of Petco Park's Holiday Wonderland. I entered the Padres twitter contest in attempt to win some tickets, but lost out to fans who had much better reasons than me to attend. As I drove home from work earlier in the evening I was thinking about the event longingly, wishing that I could experience the joy of Christmas while rubbing elbows with San Diego's VIPs.
Once I got home tweets from the Wonderland started to come across my timeline and I grew grinchy green with jealously. Bobby the Padres' organist also looked on from afar knowing that tonight was the only night he could possibly attend. Fortunately the Padres Chief Marketing Officer invited Bobby through Twitter to come on down and Bobby in turn invited me to be his plus one. Without hesitation I picked him up and we traveled downtown to Petco Park in search of the true meaning of the holiday.
The moment we stepped foot into the ballpark we were transported to a far away place where decorated trees grow in the wild, reindeer lay lazily about, generosity is a given and candy is on the menu. It's amazing how with the right ambiance a once familiar place can become both mystical and magical. Don't believe me, check out what happened to Bobby after he caught foam snowflakes on his tongue.
Up the stairs we went...
...into a land where eating Candy is mandatory.
Me and @Bobbycressey were last minute invites to #SDHolidayWonderland. AMAZE! pic.twitter.com/pVAXn0Mwq9— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) December 5, 2014
There's so much to see in each Christmas scene. It's all in the details and if you look close enough you can see hidden characters and maybe even some long forgotten personal memories from Christmases past.
They really just need to leave this cozy living room at @PetcoPark all year long. #SDHolidayWonderland pic.twitter.com/Aht1Kf6xeZ— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) December 5, 2014
Bobby and I grabbed a libation and a single Swedish meatball each and headed to the field to ride the train around the bases. In line we spotted several Padres like Mark Prior, Dave Roberts, Mark Kotsay and Tony Gwynn Jr.
Me: "Hey it's Mark Kotsay" @gaslampball: "And more importantly, his wife."— Roberto Cressioso (@Bobbycressey) December 5, 2014
Waiting in line for the train with @gaslampball at #SDHolidayWonderland pic.twitter.com/dQNVLpvsMf— Roberto Cressioso (@Bobbycressey) December 5, 2014
When it was our turn to ride the train a swarm of kids filled the seats and we decided not to fight them as we usually would and instead to come back later. Which we did. It was great fun.
Riding a train around the bases. #InTheCaboose #SDHolidayWonderland pic.twitter.com/EfBs8GOjLG— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) December 5, 2014
Next we went to see the reindeer in right field. I wasn't sure if we were supposed to pet them or feed them or just stare. While considering my options I was tapped on my shoulder only to find that Fox Sports employee Jacquelyn had slipped to my other side, a classic Christmas prank. We caught up and shared glad tidings.
Would totally pet these reindeer if I could reach them. #SDHolidayWonderland pic.twitter.com/mA4pC7o0ef— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) December 5, 2014
Next Bobby, myself and and our new friend Brian went inner tubing down a snowy incline in center field. I have some video of bobby that I'll upload later.
As time ran out and the guests started towards home. Bobby and I took a quick stop into the Cocktail Lounge. Bobby posed for me.
"Draw me like one of your French girls. " - @Bobbycressey #SDHolidayWonderland pic.twitter.com/DbD6DCgEpW— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) December 5, 2014
One last stop for us was the gift shop. I saw a bitchin' Padres sweater that I ALMOST bought for $80 before two hot and slightly inebriated chicks told me not to.
This @Padres Xmas sweater is my jam. $80. #SDHolidayWonderland pic.twitter.com/Smo8yzv0A8— Gaslamp Ball (@gaslampball) December 5, 2014
They told a crazy story that Mike Dee had told them that the sweaters were being sold for only $9 earlier in the night. I listened intently and ended up taking their advice and passing on the sweater.
All in all it was great fun and would highly recommend it, especially to those of you with kids. Huzzah!