The Tale Of Two Food Truck Treats – A Win-Win

Who doesn’t like a food truck feast?  There’s something magical about coveting culinary carriers of cool and contrasting cuisines.  In other words, I like food trucks, too.  Here is a Tale of Two Food Truck Treats, events that won’t leave you feeling hungry.

Food Truck Fridays at MGM SPRINGFIELD

MGM Springfield presents three food trucks outside on the Armory Square every Friday starting at 11am. In addition, some local favorites will be available to try while enjoying live music, games, and more.

“Derby de Mayo Weekend” successfully kicked off Food Truck Fridays on Friday, May 3rd. A performance by local cover band Feel Good Drift added to the excitement of the maiden voyage of this event.

According to the MGM Springfield website, this Friday’s trucks consists of:

  1. Guac This Way – Enjoy classic Mexican favorites including tacos, quesadillas, churros and more.
  2. Man! Buns – Mixing together Asian street food, bao buns, and a little bit of weird.
  3. Gelato – a classic Gelato Cart serving a variety of gelato favors to satisfy your sweet tooth.

    MGM Springfield Food Truck Fridays.

    MGM Springfield Food Truck Fridays.

What are you waiting for? Start planning that extended lunch break at MGM Springfield.  Tell your boss NETimeGambling.com suggested it.

New England Food Truck Festival at Mohegan Sun

New England Food Truck Festival at Mohegan Sun is a two-day event being hosted in the Winter Parking Lot at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT. This is The New England Food Truck Festival’s fourth year at Mohegan Sun. This festival will feature dozens of food trucks, live music, entertainment for kids, face painting, field games, a fireworks show on Saturday starting at 9:15pm.

The event features 30 food trucks, live music, fireworks and family fun. With a range from Cupcakes to fried chicken, there is sure to be something for everyone.

The First Food Truck Festival at Mohegan Sun

The First Food Truck Festival at Mohegan Sun, and NETimeGambling was there!

First, the dates and times begin on August 31st: VIP Hour 11:00am – 12:00pm and General Admission 12:00pm – 10:00pm.  On the second day, September 1st: VIP Hour 11:00am -12:00pm General Admission 12:00pm – 8:00pm.

For information concerning ticket prices and FAQ’s, click HERE.

So, there it is, The Tale Of Two Food Truck Treats.  Plan for Fridays at MGM Springfield, and August 31/Sept 1st at Mohegan Sun. It’s a Win-Win!

Binbin

 

 

MGM Springfield Three Years Ago

MGM Springfield Casino Entrance

MGM Springfield Casino Entrance

Three years ago, before MGM Springfield was built, I had some random thoughts and concerns for the future.  The following post was written three years ago.  Any additions will be in green italics.  Otherwise, it’s posted here as it was three years ago. MGM Springfield Three Years Ago. 


MGM Springfield Three Years Ago

I really do want MGM Springfield to succeed.It’s being counted on to bring revenue for an economically needy city. MGM Springfield needs to offer jobs and enhance the rundown parts of Springfield.

thI want it to be another casino jewel in New England to solidify southern New England as a destination.  MGM, EncoreBH, Foxwoods & Mohegan Sun are all resorts people from all over the country would enjoy visiting.  How much is MGM Springfield a resort?  That’s a topic for a different post. But for now let’s see how it stacks up compared to MGM Springfield Three Years Ago.

Unfortunately, I still have doubts to accompany the excitement of a top-class resort venue and their journey to 2018.  So here are random thoughts about the MGM Springfield project and related issues:

Changes in Plans

The original plans were impressive, but now take away the tower, lower the parking garage by two floors, and move the apartments in the opening of the video further away from the casino. Inside, MGM Springfield looks similar to Red Rock Casino in Las Vegas (Sumerlain), with restaurants outlying the casino, and the essential “Center Bar” made so Important by the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas long ago.  It has modern looks like MGM’s latest “Aria,” but much brighter. (Today, we now know it’s not even close to looking like Red Rock in Nevada, except for restaurants on the perimeter. It’s much smaller, with fewer hotel rooms. Center Bar is just a walk-up bar, a smaller version of Long Bar at the D in Downtown, Las Vegas.)

No free alcohol on the Casino Floor -Plainridge Park Slot Parlor

No free alcohol on the Casino Floor -Plainridge Park Slot Parlor

Will MGM & Wynn (Encore) be powerful enough to influence a repeal to the “NO Happy Hour” Law in Massachusetts?  Imagine no alcohol freebies on a casino floor owned by MGM & Wynn – blasphemy! (Originally, free drinks were to be limited to non-alcoholic.  Good for all that it was changed. Encore & MGM did have enough power to get Massachusetts to extend alcohol service. Both casinos are able to serve alcohol to players until 4:00AM)

MGM Atlanta

MGM Atlanta

MGM is a giant in the gambling industry and shouldn’t have any trouble separating their concerns in Macau & Las Vegas.  But their project in Atlanta, the first casino in Georgia, might be more of an interest than Springfield.  Massachusetts hasn’t been the most welcome state in the country concerning Wynn & MGM’s interests.

National MLife Connections

MLife Rewards Club of MGM

MLife Rewards Club of MGM

I’m encouraged about then East-West connection the rewards club will provide.  Earning MLife points in Springfield that can be used in Las Vegas & Biloxi (MGM owns Beau Rivage Resort Casino there) is exciting!  Let’s face it, MGM owns some incredible properties.  Imagine earning offers from MGM Springfield to stay at Bellagio, Aria, and Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas! (In fact, MLife connections providing offers all over the country is a huge reason to play at MGM Springfield. In addition, Borgata is now owned my MGM, another great east coast property)

The Connecticut Threat

MGM dismisses everyone else in New England (except Wynn) as no competition. Eliminating the hotel tower is disappointing.  Yet, their “hotel on its side” plan idea is supposed to be the thing that distinguishes them from the Foxwoods & Mohegan Suns of the world.

Changes in designs do occur all the time. Rising costs are usually sighted as the reasons for these changes – whether it’s a Mall, housing project, or a casino. Sorry MGM, we know you are big stuff in the gaming industry, but rationalizing a downgraded hotel as game changing in the casino industry is just insulting.  New Englanders just aren’t that naive and stupid.

MGM Springfield

New rendering of MGM Springfield’s, minus the Hotel Tower

Correspondingly, if  MGM thinks the Nutmeg State’s casinos are not a threat to MGM Springfield’s success, why the law suit? (MGM International threw lots of opposition to disrupt a third casino in CT) Likewise, why does MGM compare itself to CT’s tribal casinos instead of looking out west to New York State. By the same token, MGM says it wants a casino in CT (Bridgeport) but pulled out of Foxwoods in previous years?  Hypocrisy I say. Sheer hypocrisy.

Related Post – MGM sues Connecticut officials over casino legislation

(Since then, MGM bought the Empire City Casino and Yonkers Raceway in New York. That’s only 55 miles away from Bridgeport, CT.  Also, their recent interest in buying Encore Boston Harbor showed a lack of wanting to keep MGM Springfield. MGM International continues to look like PacMan – trying to gobble up everything in sight.)

Gamblers Concerns

I’m just as concerned with what MGM is going to bring to gamblers.  So, MGM, I ask you – what advantage do I have spreading my money in Springfield compared to other New England options?

Poor VP Pay outs in many MGM properties. Jacks or better at 7/5.

Poor VP Pay outs in many MGM properties. Jacks or better at 7/5.

Will MGM have the same poor to mediocre Video Poker paytables that are in all their other properties?  (Yes!) The exception is Borgata in Atlantic City which they share with Boyd Gaming. You’re going to have to make your gambling options better if you seriously want to compete with CT & RI. (Guess we nailed that one!)images (3)I wonder what plans MGM Springfield has concerning smoking.  The options provided for smokers at Plainridge Park seem almost punitive.  Massachusetts Casino Law has the entire casino as non-smoking. (All Massachusetts casinos are smokeless. This is a plus to most.)

I have so many other thoughts, questions and requests concerning MGM Springfield, but they will just have to wait……….my brain hurts, time for a break.

Binbin

(Thanks for going back in time with us.  MGM Springfield is still evolving.  I wonder how different it will be three years from today?)

 

 

MGM Springfield Trip Report – Tier Credit Multiplier, Dr. Suess & The Fort

A recent visit to MGM Springfield inspired this post – MGM Springfield Trip Report – Tier Credit Multiplier, Dr. Suess & The Fort. The staff at NETimeGambling.com is always looking forward to those status multiplier days. This past Tuesday we visited MGM Springfield to take advantage of their Tier Credit Multiplier on Tuesdays. Here are the multipliers available:

  • Platinum & NOIR – Earn 5X Tier Credit Multiplier
  • Gold – Earn 4X Tier Credit Multiplier
  • Pearl – Earn 3X Tier Credit Multiplier
  • Sapphire – Earn 2X Tier Credit Multiplier

It’s all day long.  If you take part in this promotion, swipe your card and activate the promo first.  Swiping your players card at any MLife kiosk must be done before you start playing.

Tier Credit Multiplier

The play was a slow burn. Bonuses hit here and there, but we were never really up.  Bert & I played slots mostly to get the biggest bang for the buck for status points. Some of our better results were found on the following machines:

  • Lord of the Rings – Rule Them All by IGT – (suggestion, play at least $1.50 to get all lines and all possible bonuses)
  • Lucky Honeycomb Twin Fever by Konami
  • Buffalo Grand by Aristocrat
  • Jumping Jalepenos (also Konami)

Inside MGM casino

This visit was not a success financially, but for four hours we raised our status points substantially, which was our goal for the day.

But, MGM still needs to improve dining. As a matter of fact, we like TAP, and Cal Mare, but I need more than the same thing over and over.  In addition, South Market service is a hit or miss, no matter how many people are in line. Furthermore, the possibilities are overpriced, especially at the Hearth Grill. South Market is advertised as 24 hours, but look at the website and the none of the restaurant hours are listed as 24 hrs. on the website.

Casino News and amenities 

The casino seems slightly more spacious. It feeling like a few slots were taken out to accommodate the electronic roulette and craps.

Unfortunately, no report on table games this time due to only slot play. In addition, no pics or coverage on either the new “Island Bar” or the VIP Lounge where Starbucks used to be.  Both are closed off.

Drink service is much improved.  We had very little wait between roving drink staff.  I noticed a new and interesting thing happening at Center Bar.  Bartenders are interested trying their mixology talents on you.  For this reason, try asking for something different and you may be surprised at the interesting drink you received.  I saw some “experiments” that looked quite good and were received well by other patrons.  Socializing is still a good reason to hang out at the bar.  However, the video poker (still same terrible pay tables) certainly isn’t. Speaking of which……

Double Bonus Video Poker

BTW, 9/6 Double Bonus is the only playable video poker, quarter denomination, at center bar. Playing this game requires you understand that:

  1. 10/6 is Full Pay, so with perfect strategy, you’re still playing at 98% to start with.
  2. Double Bonus perfect play is the most difficult strategy to learn for perfect play of all the Jacks Or Better Bonus games. Most players concentrate on JOB, Bonus Poker, Double Double Bonus,  and Deuces variations, which have horrible pay tables at the quarter denomination at MGMS.
  3. Playing less than perfect play, or trying other game strategy (such as JOB or DDB) will further decrease you EV (expected value).  At this point, playing a $1 or higher slot machine may be better for points accrued, status level, and your ADT (Average Daily Theoretical).

Time to Visit Dr. Suess

We thought we would make a day of it.  Spontaneity sometimes reaps disappointing results. We arrived at the Dr. Seuss Museum at 4:45PM. It closed at 5:00, weekdays. Rule #1, “google” when your destination is open.  However, we were able to enjoy the garden outside and return another time. Here are pics of the garden:

From right to left – The Cat in the Hat, Dr. Seuss, and Binbin

The Dr. Seuss Museum Entrance

Time to Eat

Inside, behind the hostess station at “The Fort”

Since we have eaten at TAP, Cal Mare and Red Rose Pizza many times, I thought I would bring my wife to a locals dining staple. Thanks to Chris DiMauro, from Art In The Game, for bringing me one time. The Student Prince and Fort Restaurant is its name.  In Springfield, it’s just referred to as “The Fort.”  This establishment’s history in referred to in the post below.

Related Post – Springfield’s Dining Destination Since 1935

The inside is “historic eye candy” meets “German Pub.”  Steins adorn shelves everywhere you look. The benches, beer, and food just screams “Your gonna like this place!”  We shared the best fried pork belly we ever tasted, more meat than usual with a pork belly.  Then we took turns with the “Wurstplate.” It consisted of delicious bratwurst, knockwurst and boar/cranberry sausages. The sides of sweet & sour red cabbage, and the sauerkraut brought me back my visit to Germany, only the Fort’s might have been better!  Topped off with a Spaten Franziskaner Hefe-Weissbier and it was the perfect German dining we’ve experienced in a very long time.

Make this a dining destination in Springfield. They have complimentary parking if you’re driving. (but tip these guys anyway).

Do not walk from MGMS at night. It’s not that close and not that safe at night. I suggest you take a from MGM.

Conclusion

It’s all good.  A Great day of gambling & status harvesting at MGM Springfield, fun at the Dr. Seuss Museum (to be continued) and a fabulous ding experience. I’d say it was a Win-Win day!

NETG Related Post – MGM Springfield – Looking Back Three Years Ago

Binbin & Bert