Tigers announce dates, sites for Winter Caravan

Lynn Henning
The Detroit News
Tigers third baseman Nick Castellanos talks with Krista Gudith, left, of Fenton and her son, Bennett, 7, while Castellanos is a guest server at an appearance last year on the Winter Caravan at Buffalo Wild Wings.

Tigers players, front-office brass, coaches and on-air celebrities, will board a pair of buses Jan. 21-22 as the annual Winter Caravan rolls across Metro Detroit and outlying areas, signaling a cold-weather start to Detroit’s 2016 baseball season.

The two buses will make nearly 30 stops as part of an itinerary heavily directed at saluting first-responders and heightening awareness of police and emergency personnel and their duties.

The Tigers will be led by general manager Al Avila, manager Brad Ausmus, and by most of the players on the Tigers’ 40-man roster. Also joining the group: assistant GM David Chadd, special assistant Alan Trammell, business overseer Duane McLean, as well as broadcasters Dan Dickerson, Mario Impemba, and Rod Allen.

Stops at the Detroit Police Department, Livonia Fire Department, and Wayne County Sheriff’s Headquarters will be among the first-response sites visited.

The Tigers will maintain their recent custom of traveling as two parties, with half the team boarding a Metro Bus that concentrates on Detroit and suburban stops, while the other half will occupy a West Bus that will concentrate on areas in the center and western parts of the Lower Peninsula.

Among the West Bus destinations: Mitten Brewing Co., as well as Meijer’s in Grand Rapids, and the Pepsi Bottling Plant in Howell.

Other stops along the Metro Bus trail will include: North American International Auto Show, Children’s Hospital, the Henry Ford Museum, Carhartt, and Hockeytown Authentics in Troy, as well as the Tuskegee Airmen National Historical Museum.

The Tigers will also attend dinner functions at Toledo, Ohio, for the Triple A Toledo Mud Hens, and in Grand Rapids for the West Michigan Whitecaps.

The week culminates with TigerFest, set for Jan. 23 at Comerica Park.


Metro Bus

Thursday, Jan. 21

* Children’s Hospital (DMC), 1:05-2:10 p.m.

* Detroit Police Department, 1:10-2:00 p.m.

* Ann Arbor VA Healthcare System, 1:55-2:30 p.m.

* Detroit Public Library, 2:30-3:05 p.m.

* FOX Sports Detroit, 2:45-3:25 p.m.

* Livonia Fire Department, 3:40-4:25 p.m.

* Tuskegee Airmen National Historical Museum, 4:50-5:30 p.m.

* The Henry Ford Museum, 5-6:15 p.m.

* Hockeytown Authentics, 5:15-6:00 p.m.

* Helping Hens Winter Benefit at Fifth Third Field, Toledo, 6-7:30 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 22

* Wayne County Sheriff’s Headquarters, 10:30-11:10 a.m.

* GM Heritage Center, 11 a.m.-12:00 p.m.

* Carhartt, 11:25-11:55 a.m.

* Comerica Bank, Auburn Hills, 12:30-2 p.m.

* North American International Auto Show 2:45-3:45 p.m.


Thursday, Jan. 21

* Michigan AP Sports Meeting, Lansing, 2:30-3:15 p.m.

* West Michigan Whitecaps Winter Baseball Banquet, 5:50-9:25 p.m.

Friday, Jan. 22

* Meijer, Grand Rapids, 10-11:30 a.m.

* Mitten Brewing Company, Grand Rapids, 12:30-12:45 p.m.

* Pepsi Bottling Plant, Howell, 2:30-3:15 p.m.