Monday, July 14, 2008

A Polo Match

"Do we want to attend a Polo Match on Saturday?" read my husband's email. "Hmmm... I don't know", was my response. It turned out that my husband's employer was a sponsor of the Denver Polo Classic, a charity event to help disadvantaged youth. Because the company was a sponsor they got a bunch of free tickets. They were having a hard time getting rid of them and Chris took the last 2 to make the boss happy (kids got in free). Once we agreed, it turned out the details were a bit fuzzy. Would we have to pay for parking? The website said to pack a picnic lunch and a blanket, but it also talked about food sampling. Did that mean we would have to pay for food and drink or was that included in the ticket? Would we have to sit on a blanket in the grass? (Thats fun for about 20 most!) To top it off, the match was several miles across Denver from our house. Needless to say, by the time Saturday rolled around I was starting to dread the whole thing. But, we had already told the kids that we were going and it wouldn't have been easy to back out at that point.

Saturday AM we started on our way. We arrived at the match a bit early, it was really easy to find! The match was located in a fancy gated community and the field was an actual polo field...they didn't just turn it into one... Dang lots of people live on a golf course how many live near a polo playing field?

We parked our dented mini van in between a Lexus and a Mercedes and unpacked our stuff. We followed the other folks that were headed up the hill to the tents they had set up. Since we were early we had to stand in line for a bit. As I looked around at the people we were in line with, I realized that not even going to the opera was as bourgeoisie as this event.

At 12 noon exactly they opened the gates. They had a kids area set up, so we stopped there first. The kids got their faces painted and picked up all kinds of useless swag. They were loving the event so far.

After the kids had their fun, we entered the big tent. As our eyes adjusted from the bright glare of the summer's day to the dim coolness of the tent we were greeted by a very friendly person named Julie. She wanted to let us know where everything was located and how things worked. She pointed out the silent auction area where we could bid on suff... fat chance we'd win anything for a dollar! LOL. Next she pointed out the souvenir table...everything was reasonably priced (no really, it was!) Then she said something that brought tears of joy to my husband's eyes, "All the food and drinks are complimentary and the tables are set up so you can enjoy the game while you eat!" Honestly, I was so happy, if my hubby had kissed her full on the lips I wouldn't have been that upset!

There were several restaurants with booths and 3- 4 different areas set up to get drinks... Effin Vodka, Coors, Barefoot Wines... Yum! The 'samples' the food booths were handing out were pretty close to full portions of a meal. I figured that the drinks would be more mixer than alcohol...but no, the drink that I got was damn near all vodka and then the bar tender waved the lemonade over it to give it some color. We got a table near the announcers booth and pretty close to the field and started enjoying our feast. The kids were, of course, less impressed... they thought we were going some place with 'good' food. Since the food had flavor and didn't come with a big yellow M on the wrapper, it was viewed with a lot of suspicion. I, however loved the food and really enjoyed the sampling.

The Polo Match was very interesting and the announcer made sure to explain the game as he went. Turns out, polo isn't a big sport for everyone in Colorado! The horses were beautiful and the kids really enjoyed watching the players ride the horses up and down the field. They rooted for both teams and got into the half time event of racing stick horses across a portion of the field.

In the end, after all my dreading, it was one of the best events we have ever attended. It was kid friendly, the event coordinators and volunteers were beyond helpful and welcoming, the food and drinks were excellent and the polo match was great. I'm hoping that the boss man decides to support that charity event again next year, we'll be the first to get tickets rather than the last!

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