Missouri fan Steve Ware was expecting a relatively easy travel day to Tampa, Florida, when he left his home in Kansas City Thursday morning. But Mother Nature had other plans.
Ware and his family were scheduled to depart Kansas City International Airport at 7:10 a.m. on American Airlines Flight 2487 for Dallas-Fort Worth. It will cause you to miss the connection that was planned. Their next flight was from 1:30pm until he stopped at the Dallas runway at 3:30pm awaiting deicing and takeoff. Instead of arriving early in the afternoon, Ware and his family finally landed at Tampa International Airport just before 7pm.
Ware was one of dozens of fans who flew to Florida to support the Tigers at the Gasparilla Bowl on Friday night just days before Christmas, battling bad weather brought on by recent winter storms. was.
The storm has now wreaked havoc from coast to coast, reaching Missouri on Thursday morning. Snow piled up and wind speeds of 20 to 40 miles per hour made traveling conditions even worse.
Predicted as early as last weekend, these rapidly deteriorating conditions have prompted some fans to move south earlier than expected. Randa Rawlins and her husband were originally scheduled to arrive in Tampa early Friday morning, but instead took an 8:00 am flight out of St. Louis on Thursday morning, beating bad weather.
Fans who left before Wednesday afternoon didn’t face many weather-related issues. Springfield resident Kevin Mathury drove to Kansas City and flew to Orlando on Wednesday.
“It was fine. There were no major issues,” Mathury said.
The situation deteriorated rapidly from Wednesday night through Thursday morning, with 52 flights from Kansas City and 64 flights from St. Louis reportedly canceled by the end of Thursday. Fans in Missouri, traveling from cities up north such as Chicago, have dealt with even worse weather conditions, with a combined 475 flights between the city’s O’Hare and Midway airports.
Mathury’s friends, who were due to arrive in Tampa on Thursday morning, saw their flights canceled. Braggin’ Rights Watch Missouri Men’s Basketball That Night Instead of going to his Hattricks Tavern for his party, they dealt with the stress of the trip and, as of Thursday afternoon, the best-case scenario was to arrive after midnight. had.
Not many Missouri fans had a hectic few days of travel like Ware’s friend and neighbor Derek Buehler. A Delta Air Lines pilot, his Wednesday was due to start in Boston and end in Kansas City after flying airliners to Denver and Atlanta. Instead, the storm canceled flights to Missouri and forced them to fly straight to Florida after spending the night in Georgia, which in itself was a headache.
“I came down[to Tampa]after everything was cancelled,” Buehler said. “I called[Ware]because he’s my next-door neighbor and said, ‘Hey, all my Mizzou stuff is in my closet. Go get it, put it in your suitcase.’ Can you drop me off?” He checked it, and my bag is the only one that didn’t make it; it’s somewhere in Dallas.”
Ware, Buehler, Maturey and Rawlins are just a few of the lucky fans who ended up in the heart of Florida. As of Friday morning, dozens may still be trying to attend before the bowl game, while others may not be able to attend at all.
Spending a few days in mostly warm weather was a no-brainer for Minneapolis fan Kevin Toshet, who arrived Tuesday. Like a few Tigers fans, he has to turn around and get home before the holidays.
“Getting off was easy,” Touchet said.
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