If you ever get the chance to go to Spring Training, whether it be the St. Louis Cardinals, the Chicago Cubs, or any other Major League Baseball team, you should make the trip. I just returned from my second Spring Training venture in 3 years through Destination Travel and thoroughly enjoyed every moment of it.

My venture took me to West Palm Beach to see the Cardinals play the New York Yankees and the Miami Marlins. I also saw the Yankees, my favorite team, play the Marlins as well. I went to three games in three days, a trip to the beach for some great seafood, and spent some time at my favorite Irish Pub hangout called Paddy Macs. The lamb chops there were fabulous. The Irish band playing got me into the Irish "mode" just in time for this weekend's 27th Annual St. Patrick's Parade in Quincy.

If you are a baseball fan this is a trip you must take. It is nothing at all like being at Busch Stadium. The players are accessible for autographs and conversation too! I actually spoke with Yankee manager Joe Girardi for a few minutes before the Yankees game with the Marlins (trying to convince him to sign me). Instead of me signing a contract, I got his autograph instead on a baseball. Thanks Joe!

Cardinal Manager Mike Matheny was kind enough to actually sign autographs after the game concluded, and during the game quite a few players were signing them in the bullpen area.

It is so much more of a relaxed atmosphere. It is also perfect for kids as well. The beach is just a few miles away from your hotel and if you like to golf there are plenty of courses available too. There are two shopping areas (one is a mall) that are a walking distance from  your hotel as well for the shoppers on the trip.

The trip had everything you would ever want. We left Wednesday at 7 am from St.Louis and were in West Palm Beach by 12:30 that afternoon with a full afternoon and evening to enjoy in sunny 74 degree weather.

If this trip is not on your bucket list it should be.