Connect with Everyone and See What Happens! (ToastyTote was Featured on NBC’s “The List”)

In Finding Nemo Dory says “Just Keep Swimming” and that is a great life lesson. Just keep going no matter what happens and you will go far. It is very hard sometimes, but just keep swimming.

Along the way “Just Keep Connecting” with everyone along the way and see what happens. You will never know how that connection last month, like a seed planted, will grow this month.

Case in point is from a connection a few months back, ToastyTote was referred to Mitch Webber a reporter from NBC’s new show “The List”. We were interviewed and it aired last night. How fun!

Check out the video and then next week start introducing yourself to most everyone you meet and start living your dreams.

Top AAA Baseball Fields You Should Visit This Summer

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“Baseball, it is said, is only a game. True. And the Grand Canyon is only a hole in Arizona.” — George F. Will, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist. 

Between the chatter of an excited crowd, the competing cheers of opposing fans, and the crunch of popcorn underfoot, few things say “summer” quite like a baseball game. Triple-A baseball stadiums, home to the often overlooked but no less entertaining Minor Leagues games, feature the coolest summer experiences in the nation.  We’ve scoured the nation to find the best Triple-A ballparks. We’d love your feedback on which is your favorite.

CommunityAmerica Ballpark (Kansas City, KS)

We’ll start with ToastyTote’s hometown favorite CommunityAmerica Ballpark. Home of the Kansas City T-Bones, it is an award winning ballpark that features a very family friendly environment. The kids in the ToastyTote family love to bring their gloves in hopes of catching a foul ball and always want just one more hot dog from the kid-only concession stand.

Located in the popular Village West shopping area, there is plenty of play space for kids, which includes a playground in full view of the field. It has won two Field of the Year awards over its eleven-year history for it’s fun atmosphere and the competitive spirit of the KC T-Bones Organization.

A landmark of CommunityAmerica ballpark is the “mini-monster” left field line. Like the legendary Fenway Park in Boston, CommunityAmerica Ballpark has a very high left field wall. Fans have the ability to walk around the entire concourse, thus getting a view of the action from atop the “mini-monster”.

Coca-Cola Park (Buffalo, NY)

Few images of classic Americana match better with baseball than Coca-Cola, and that relationship persists with Coca-Cola Park in Buffalo, New York. Reviewed as the best Minor Leagues baseball park in the United States by Stadium Journey, this park blends atmosphere, tasty concessions, and a fun fan-base to make for a great summer visit.

Stadium Journey highlights the Buffalo IronPigs’ mascots: FeRROUS and FeFe. The two, alongside their crew, engage fans with:

  • People on stilts throwing T-shirts
  • A man on a four-wheeler shooting hot dogs
  • A dance number by the grounds crew
  • Other mayhem!

At Coca-Cola Park, baseball games get cranked up a notch.

McCoy Stadium (Pawtucket, RI)

Home to the Pawtucket Red Sox in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, this stadium is one of the nation’s oldest and “fan-friendliest” parks, according to Complex.com.

Its family-friendly reputation is earned by how well it seeks to accommodate its smaller, younger “PawSox” fans. It features a number of children’s play areas, lacks the loud and “in-your-face” atmosphere of other ballparks, and encourages interaction between kids and the players.

The most famous activity at McCoy Stadium is “fishing” for autographs. Since the first row bleachers are above the dugout, younger fans often dangle items in pails or milk cartons (sometimes with a candy bribe) hoping for players to “bite” and give their autographs. This silly pastime captures the magic of McCoy Stadium.

Isotopes Park (Albuquerque, NM)

Stadium Journey applauds Isotopes Park for its quirky character, gorgeous mountain view, and fierce yet friendly fans. Few places and even fewer sports teams boast names from long-running cartoon sitcoms, and “The Simpsons”-inspired Isotopes and Isotopes Park in Albuquerque, New Mexico are proud of that accomplishment.

Fans can lay down their ToastyTote blankets on a Simpsons character bench, sit down, and snap a photo with one of the classic cartoon characters. Or they can visit Donut Mart, a stand with cake-sized donuts bound to appease the gluttonous Homer Simpson.

These are only a few of the exciting and unique Triple-A stadiums America has to offer. Look for a Minor Leagues stadium in your area for a fun night at the ballpark, and don’t forget to bring your ToastyTote to keep your buns happy on those hard bleachers and seats! 

See you at the stadium!

Best Outdoor Amphitheaters

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Whether you want to hear classical music under the stars, escape into a Broadway musical, or dance to the rhythm of a rock concert, America’s legendary amphitheaters make an ideal summer adventure! And whether you go solo or with family and friends, there’s nothing like live entertainment in a beautiful, outdoor setting to make great memories. Let’s explore some of America’s most awesome amphitheaters.

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Red Rocks Amphitheatre

Chiseled into the side of Mt. Morrison in Morrison, Colorado, the Red Rocks Music Amphitheatre, well, rocks. Ranked the best amphitheater in America by Rolling Stone Magazine, this venue features breathtaking mountain views and a varied performance schedule.

In addition to concerts featuring many types of artists, the Red Rocks Music Amphitheatre also holds film screenings and stargazing sessions. Whether you want to curl up on your ToastyTote blanket and listen to Lionel Richie or look for shapes in the clouds with your family, this mountainside amphitheater has something for everyone.

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Kansas City Starlight Theatre

Ancient amphitheaters dating way back to Ancient Greece and Rome were not typically venues for rock concerts. Instead, they were the settings for theatre. Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, Missouri carries on this tradition (plus a bevy of rock concerts). In addition to touring shows, Starlight remains one of only two major self-producing outdoor theaters in the United States.

Also praised by Rolling Stone Magazine, this amphitheater features the spectacle of fully produced Broadway touring shows, made possible by a recent renovation and investments in state-of-the-art technology. To foster local talent, they offer camps and classes for thespians both big and small. Starlight is a summer entertainment destination for hundreds of thousands of Kansas Citians and visitors each year. Plus, it’s in ToastyTote’s backyard!  We love the summer Broadway series.

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Ravinia

Located on Chicago’s North Shore, this outdoor venue is home to the Ravinia Festival, North America’s oldest outdoor music festival, as well as the summer residence of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. Each summer, approximately 600,000 visitors spread their blankets on the lawn and enjoy almost 150 events spanning all genres of music.

Legendary past performers have included Louis Armstrong, Ella Fitzgerald, Janis Joplin, and Yo-Yo Ma. Aside from the diverse array of music options, Ravinia offers the KidsLawn Interactive Musical Playground, a family-friendly space where kids can create their own music with interactive exhibits including the “instrument petting zoo.”

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The Hollywood Bowl

The epicenter of glitz and glamor, the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, California is where history and theatricality intersect. Few other amphitheaters can boast a near century-long resume of success.

From one perspective, the Buzzfeed –praised Hollywood Bowl evokes modernity. It features high-end technology and the magnetism of nearby Hollywood and Los Angeles, but it is also a monument in music history. Built in 1922, this California fixture has housed Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, the Beatles, and nearly every other music legend.

Outdoor amphitheaters have existed for centuries as entertainment destinations and as meeting places, bringing people together under the open sky. We encourage you to take part in this ages-old human experience this summer – it doesn’t matter what the venue is, or the occasion – spending time in nature with your friends or family is what’s important!

10 Essentials for Your Summer Road Trip

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It’s summertime and you know what that means: ROAD TRIP! Whether you’re driving to the mountains, the beach, or to Grandma’s house, road trips are a great way to enjoy the summer.

Lately, we’ve been seeing all kinds of lists of things to bring on a road trip, so we thought we’d give it a try ourselves. Besides the essentials like a full tank of gas and toiletries, here are ten things we suggest you bring with you next time you hit the road:

1. Loved Ones

Share this adventure with people you love, whether it’s your best friends or your family. Everything is more fun when you share the experience. Also, it’s important to be able to hand over the wheel if you get tired.

2. A Cooler Full of Drinks

Fill a cooler to the brim with your favorite beverages when hitting the road. Anything with caffeine can keep you awake and refreshed for the drive.

3. Power Inverter

Having a power inverter to charge your phone or laptop for the drive is essential. Having this useful tool will keep you on the road and independent from relying on road stops and restaurants to charge your electronics.

4. Comfy Things

Make yourself feel at home! Wearing comfy sweatpants and shoes you can easily slip off will make for a comfortable trip. Also bring some pillows for napping or cuddling with a fellow road-tripper. A ToastyTote can provide comfort and warmth when used as a blanket.

5. A Music Playlist

Before leaving for your trip, make a playlist of road trip music. It doesn’t matter whether you put it on your iPod or burn it onto a CD, blast some tunes while you trek down the open road. “Carry On My Wayward Son” by Kansas, “American Girl” by Tom Petty, and of course, “Life is a Highway” by Rascal Flatts are all great songs to pump you up along the way.

6. Kids As Your GPS

Get your kids involved. Let them be your GPS by putting away your smartphones and pulling out the good old-fashioned maps. They will love being involved in getting you to your vacation destination. You can also make the kids a member of the pit crew. Give each of them a role to play at your stops by letting them check the air in the tires, clean the windows or check the road checklist.

7. Road Games

While you’re in the retro mood while using your map, why don’t you break out some classic road games? Bring board games to play with fellow travelers along the journey. I-Spy and the ABC game are always entertaining. If you’re trying to stay off electronics on your trip, here are some more games that are “off the screen”.

8. A Good Book

Bring your favorite book, or pack one you’ve never read. On the Road by Jack Kerouac and Travels With Charley by John Steinbeck are two highly regarded road trip novels, but the list goes on and on when it comes to great literature to bring along the open road.

9. Your Favorite Snacks

Keep yourself from getting hungry with your favorite snacks. It doesn’t matter if your favorite snack is healthy or sugary: have fun and stock up.

10. A First Aid Kit

Better to be safe than sorry. Bring a first aid kit packed with anything you could possibly need. Whether its basic Band-Aids for any small cut to gauze pads for anything major, always be on the safe side!

These are just a few of the many things you can bring on your next road trip. Of course we would have an 11th item to bring: a ToastyTote. Tweet @ToastyTote to let us know how you could use your ToastyTote when you hit the road. We can’t wait to hear what you think!

ToastyTote First Retail Location

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Our first retail location is in Overland Park, Kansas at the corner of Metcalf & 119th St. The store name is HappiNames and a real fun store where you can purchase items and have the owner, Natalie, and her staff customize it with your child or anyone’s name on it. Stop by and tell Natalie ToastyTote sent you.