Football Games at Soldier Field and the Rogers Centre



Football fever has returned to North America.  This is the second season that Melissa and I are on the travel trail and will miss all of the action.  Last year we were in South America explaining the basics of football to anyone we came across.  Helping others understand football was one way to stay connected to our favorite sport.  We did get a chance to see some on-field action at a sports bar in Lima, Peru, and we caught the final week of 2011 and some playoffs in Cusco.  But it isn’t the same as being in North America when pigskin frenzy reaches its peak.

We met new friends on the bus to Soldier Field and prowled parking lots for tailgating action.

This year we are in Europe and I’ve decided not to join my annual football pool or survivor competition.  Instead we’ll have to keep in the loop by checking weekly results online and reminiscing about football roadtrips to places like the Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio.  Today’s football themed Photo Friday came as a result of such memories.

At the end of the 2007 season, Melissa surprised me with a flight, hotel reservation, and tickets to see my beloved Chicago Bears at Soldier Field.  It was my first time seeing the Bears on their hometurf and they blew out the New Orleans Saints in the final week of the season.  Return man and converted wide receiver Devin Hester scored two long touchdowns during the romp.  We had the chance to tailgate with the Bears faithful prior to the game and since we came with no food, we learned what midwest hospitality was all about.

We attended the International Bowl in Toronto, Canada with a gang of family and friends.




A few weeks later we traveled with our friend Tim to Toronto, Canada to see Rutgers University take on Ball State in the International Bowl.  The game took place at the Rogers Centre and we were also accompanied by Melissa’s father, brother, and some of my relatives from Canada.  Ray Rice and company ran up and down the domed field in a decisive victory.  It capped off a great football roadtrip and sent us back to New York with huge grins.



Melissa surprised me with Bears’ tickets and a flight to Chicago for my 30th birthday.

A few weeks later we packed for a road trip and saw Rutgers University take on Ball State with a crew of fanatics and first-time attendees.













The Chicago Bears trounced the New Orleans Saints on Week 17 in 2007.

When Melissa attended Rutgers the Jerseyites she met were ashamed of the team. They jumped on the bandwagon eventually.













I bared my claws for the Bears in front of Soldier Field on a football pilgrimage.

This monster of the midway goes all out for home games in Chicago.













My Canadian family and Tim are always down for a good time and jumped at the chance to attend the Bowl Game.

Soldier Field has a museum inside. I was enthralled by the exhibits and missed a Devin Hester touchdown but got goosebumps as the stadium erupted.


About Neil Friedman

A Wheel of Fortune winner and former motivational speaker, Neil Friedman is a freelance writer, videographer and certified teacher of English to speakers of other languages (TESOL). He has journeyed to over 35 countries and 30 U.S. States and lived in various parts of New York, Japan, and South America. He is currently on a two-year trip to parts of South America, Asia, and Europe. Connect with Neil on  Google+ . Twitter: @WorldWinder and