I was invited, along with the rest of the people on Panini’s blog mailing list, to check out the Panini Adrenalyn Tour if it was coming to a location near me. While the bus was coming to Boston, it wasn’t making any publicized stops for the public. So, we had to make a 2 hour drive to the Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield to see the bus and the Adrenalyn promotion. On the way there we beat most of the bad weather that was to drench Massachusetts over the weekend.
There was a small court set up inside the lobby of the Hall where kids could take shots for packs of Adrenalyn cards. My daughter made a shot with the assistance of one of the Panini employees running the shoot-around and got her first pack of cards.
There were CYO teams playing on the court in the Hall which must have been a thrill for them. There was a good sized crowd watching the games and when the kids weren’t playing they made their way upstairs to a room where Panini had the rest of their promotion set up.
I thought this was the coolest thing in the room. There’s got to be something you can rent that combines this with the traditional bounce castle. Imagine bouncing on one of those things to dunk. That would be awesome.
This was also my daughter’s favorite thing in the room, but she couldn’t even come close to making a basket so she got frustrated quickly. To be fair, she’s a little younger that the target audience for the game so they weren’t really marketing to 4 year-old kids other than making them smile by receiving free packs of cards.
This display explained the basics of how to play the game. It was standing next to kiosks set up to play the game online. I attempted to play a couple of games with the demo accounts that were set up, but the cards that the demo accounts had were as bad as the cards that I have in my own account and I kept getting creamed by other players with lineups full of special cards.
Speaking of special cards, the promotions for this event touted special cards of Hall of Famers that could only be uploaded to accounts from the Hall of Fame, but I didn’t see any sign of that going on while I was there. It’s possible that those cards were special prizes or had all been given out already, but in the over two hours that I was at the event I didn’t see any sign of those cards. The only thing that I was looking to pick up for myself at the event was the Larry Bird card so not seeing one was a little disappointing.
Here are the aforementioned game kiosks. There were slots in the front of the kiosks made to dispense something, but nothing popped out while I was playing.
On the other side of the floor were kiosks set up for registering to play the game. Packs of cards were given to you if you registered. I already had an account, but I still got some packs. I logged into my account to see if the special cards would pop into it, but no such luck.
One very cool thing about the tour is that Panini has been bringing out NBA Legends to play the game with kids coming out to the events. Sam Jones, one of the NBA’s 50 greatest players and 10-time champion with the Celtics looked to be having a blast playing the game. He was joking around with everyone and was really enjoying giving away Panini’s cards.
A few lucky kids won autographed Adrenalyn cards. I was hoping that my daughter would want to play and win, but she remembered our last trip to the Hall and only wanted to see “the other upstairs” and the Michael Jordan movie.
While at the Hall of Fame, Panini presented the Hall with the Guinness World Record largest trading card. Unfortunately, the subject of the card was Kobe Bryant since he’s the spokesman for Panini basketball. I’m not sure how well received anything Lakers will be by Celtics fans, but the card is extremely cool even if it does have a Laker on it. The card has a giant 15-inch by 15-inch swatch in it and is also hard signed by Kobe himself.
After the presentation, the card was moved upstairs where the rest of the Adrenalyn stuff was located.
Once the card was presented, we decided that it was time to hit the road. The weather was going to get worse as it got later and we had another 2 hour drive back home.
Panini is hoping to make this a yearly event at the Hall of Fame, but if they are going to do that they’re going to have to make it part of the Enshrinement Weekend or some other big event. The Hall doesn’t draw a lot of people and is out of the way for most collectors to head to. The kids that were at the Hall were having a good time, but I would guess that there were fewer kids seen by Panini at the Hall than most of the other stops on the tour. The kids that did go were getting huge stacks of cards though so they were pretty happy. Next time, Panini just needs to park the bus at the beginning of the Rose Kennedy Greenway on a Celtics game night and their cards will be seen by a lot more people.
For now, I leave you with some pictures of the bus. Upcoming are posts with my thoughts on the cards and on the game play.