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Road Games Travel Tips: Journey to the comeback city

Week 8: Seattle at Detroit, Oct. 28, 2018, 10 a.m. Pacific

SPONSORED – There are some ghosts here for Seattle fans.

Let’s admit this up front. Seattle played in a certain title game in this city 12 years ago against an opponent that shall not be named and officiated by a man whose name we’d all like to forget.

That’s really too bad.

Detroit has an awful lot to offer as it is in the midst of its biggest construction boom in decades. What was becoming an industrial ghost town 20 years ago is thriving. The pro-football team has been back in town for more than a decade now after having played in Pontiac for decades. The pro-basketball team followed suit last year when the Little Caesars Arena opened.

Not everything is new, though. The Henry Ford Museum spans 12 acres – the largest indoor museum in the country – and I once saw Boyz II Men perform there. At least it was some members of Boyz II Men. At least enough of them they were able to use the name while they performed at the commissioner’s party before that certain football game we’re not going to talk about.

There’s the Motown Museum, too. It’s located at the original studio and residence of Berry Gordy, whose Motown Record Corporation become the name of a specific sound and era of music. It’s absolutely incredible to see the array of talent that called Motown home.

There’s plenty to do in Detroit to keep you from thinking back to that certain game.

Besides, Seattle has been to Detroit a couple times since then. In fact, Seattle’s first regular-season game the next season was in Detroit, and Seattle won 9-6.

Seattle last played in Detroit back in 2012, a game that was played the same weekend Detroit was hosting the World Series, and I remember two things very clearly:

1) As I checked out of my hotel on Monday at an abominably early hour like 5 a.m., former Philadelphia pitcher Mitch Williams – who was by then a broadcaster – was holding court in a lobby bar that had long stopped serving alcohol. My early morning was his late night.

2) I returned a rental car that had been used by Seattle’s general manager over the previous week on a scouting trip that had begun in Chicago and covered more than 900 miles. Among the pile of parking passes from directional Michigan colleges and empty energy-drink cans, I got the distinct idea that scouts live (and eat) like they’re in college.

Maybe it was fitting that he had spent so much time on the road around Detroit. It is the Motor City after all.

Arrival: Alaska Airlines has two flights daily from Sea-Tac to Detroit’s Wayne County Airport (DTW). It’s located 28 miles southwest of downtown Detroit, and bus is the only public-transportation option.

Stadium: Ford Field is a fixed-roof, enclosed stadium which opened in 2002. It’s right across the street from the baseball stadium, and Hudson’s warehouse – which dates back to the 1920s – is incorporated to one of the outer walls.

Last time here: Oct. 28, 2012. Detroit 28, Seattle 24.

Dining: The one spot you have to hit is Buddy’s Pizza (17125 Conant St., Detroit, (313) 892-9001). It’s square pizza, crust cooked crisp on the outside and deliciously chewy on the inside. The cheese gets carmelized, the sweet sauce put on top. It’s a local staple. The Public House (241 W Nine Mile Rd., Ferndale, 248.850.7420) has a great menu and perhaps an even better beer list. There’s an open kitchen, a relaxed vibe and their specialty dessert is soft-serve ice cream with a rotating flavor that is certain to be both creative and delicious; Baker’s Keyboard Lounge, (20510 Livernois Ave, Detroit, 313.345.6300) a Detroit icon with great soul food. quare, Buscemi’s pizza, crispy on the bottom, chewy on the inside. Sweet sauce.