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What you need to know about 2018 Royals FanFest

Not as much star power as previous fests.

MLB: JUL 16 Rangers at Royals Photo by Nick Tre. Smith/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Royals FanFest takes place this weekend, January 26-27 at Bartle Hall in downtown Kansas City. The annual event gives fans a chance to gather, meet players, and get energized about the upcoming season. It all starts this Friday at 2 p.m. and lasts until 9 p.m. the first day, with doors open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturday. Season ticket holders are given exclusive early access. You can read about Gross(est)’s experience at last year’s FanFest here.

The event may be missing star power, as players like Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, and Lorenzo Cain are still free agents without a team.

Still, the event will include players like Danny Duffy and Salvador Pérez and manager Ned Yost is expected to make an appearance as he recovers from breaking his hip over the off-season. Other players schedule to attend include Scott Barlow, Jorge Bonifacio, Ryan Buchter, Billy Burns, Drew Butera, Hunter Dozier, Brian Flynn, Cam Gallagher, Alex Gordon, Jason Hammel, Jakob Junis, Nate Karns, Ian Kennedy, Kevin McCarthy, Whit Merrifield, Brandon Moss, Trevor Oaks, Paulo Orlando, Eric Skoglund, Bubba Starling, and Kyle Zimmer.

The event will also include former players such as Willie Akiens, Jamie Bluma, Tom Burgmeier, Jim Eisenreich, Al Fitzmorris, Mike MacFarlane, John Mayberry, Brian McRae, Fred Patek, Jamie Quirk, Cookie Rojas, Jerry Terrell, Dave Wickersham, and Frank White. Autographs are first-come, first-serve for the first 150 fans in line, only one item may be signed, and no photographs are allowed.

The Royals will bring back the Teva Royals Diamond for kids to play on and for players to offer free clinics. There will also be interactive games for the kids, including:

  • Academy Sports & Outdoors Batting Cages
  • H&R Block Little Sluggerrr’s Playground
  • Price Chopper Steal Home Challenge
  • Sprint Speed Pitch

The main stage will feature Q&A sessions with all sorts of Royals personalities including Dayton Moore, Ned Yost, Ryan Lefebvre and the Royals broadcast team, Rusty Kuntz, as well as Royals alumni and current players. You can see the schedule of events here.

Tickets are $9 for adult on Friday, and $15 on Saturday. Prices are $7 for kids on Friday, and $10 on Saturday. Kids under age six are free. You can purchase tickets online at the team site here or at the event site. There are numerous places to park downtown, and the convention center is right along the route of the free downtown streetcar.

Are you going to FanFest? Share your experiences here.