I wanted to post these earlier but two crushing losses were hard to deal with. I will say that leading up to the Titans game I had an amazing weekend. Michelle and I were invited down to the 9th annual Miami Dolphins Web Weekend. It’s an event the Dolphins hold every year where they bring staff of Miami Dolphins fan websites down for a game, a locker room tour and some really cool other things. This is actually my 9th year and Michelle and I met at the weekend when we both ran other Phins related sites.
I took a ton of photos so let me break down the weekend so you know what you are looking at when you check out the gallery. The first night of the weekend we had dinner at the training facility. Normally the Friday dinner is a little more informal with just free food and people hanging out talking. Last year we had a surprise visit from Nat Moore. This year they upped the ante with Joe Philbin surprising us. He talked to us for a while and signed some hats for our fundraiser. After that Sam Madison and showed up and talked with everyone for the rest of dinner. No one could get him to stop talking. It was great. He was showing people how he would defend Randy Moss and stuff.
The next day we got up really early and went to the stadium and helped the Miami Dolphins Special Teams pack up care packages for the military for Veterans Day. After that we had some time off and then met up back at the Dolphins training facility. There was a tour of the facilities and we saw that Richie Incognito had the Dolfans NYC shirt I sent him sitting on his locker. I thought that was pretty cool. The Dolphins equipment manager talked to us for a while which was surprisingly interesting. After that we had dinner and then we went into the team meeting room where we had a series of guest speakers. Some of them were Dolphins staffers you probably don’t care too much about, but the big ones were Mike Dee, Jeff Ireland and Jim Kiick.
Jeff Ireland was hilarious. He came out right away and made fun of all his mistakes and the trip to get Harbaugh and what he called “Dezgate” He answered our questions surprisingly honestly and was very straight forward. It made me like the guy a lot. Of course that was before we lost two horrible games in a row where our team failed to show up completely. Mike Dee answered a bunch of questions and talked about how the new logo was going to be a combination of retro and modern. He told us he had showed it to Bob Greise, Nat Moore and Dan Marino and they all loved it. It got me exited. When he said he only had time for one more question I raised my hand. I thanked him for coming to our tailgate and then I told him that Michelle and I had a present for him. We walked up to the front of the room and Michelle handed him an envelope with $1000 that we raised for the Miami Dolphins Foundation. It was a really cool moment and he thanked us and the Dolphins staff photographer took photos. Next time we have to get him a novelty sized check. Lastly Jim Kiick came up and was hilarious as well. Talked about how he hated Shula and it only took them 40 years to become friends. He introduced a documentary about the ’72 season and then did a Q&A after the movie. He also signed a ton of autographs and posed for photos. Very cool guy.
At some point during the night (after the speakers but before the movie) the Miami Dolphins announce the “Webby Awards”. The Webbys are awards given to different fan sites. Dolfans NYC had never won one because we don’t have a forum and we aren’t very similar to the other sites so there hadn’t been a category for us to win. This year they added the Eddie Jones Community Award after the late Dolphins president Eddie Jones. We thought this was an award we could win since we do so much fundraising and we have a real community. So we were shocked when we actually heard our name called for another award. We won an award for best columns and features so that was pretty cool. We actually tied with Phin Phanatic and then tied with them AGAIN for the community award. Brian Miller who runs that site is a really great guy so it was an honor to share the award with him. He won best over all site as well.
As fun as Saturday was it was now game time. We woke up early Sunday morning and headed to the stadium just a few minutes after the gates opened. We did a few laps around the stadium and ended up at the Phin Addicts tailgate where they were hosting a bunch of military members for Veterans Day. It was very cool. Those guys are serious fans. I would be in the Deep End with them every week if I lived in Miami. Before the game we hit the Nat Moore BBQ tailgate for some serious food and then got to go on the field and watch the team warm up. Finally we went to our seats in the “Locker Room Club”. The seats are actually on the field in the endzone and you are right there. You can then walk in the stadium right where the lockers are and you can see the players go in and out of the locker room. I have sat in these seats one before and it’s a much better experience when the team isn’t getting destroyed by the Titans. Another highlight was that Stephen Ross came over to the Locker Room Club before the game and shook my hand and told me how much fun the tailgate was. I had a copy of the Miami Herald that had a photo I took of him on the cover of the sports section so I pulled it out to show him. He signed it for me and a picture of us ended up on the Miami Dolphins Instagram account and on Mike Dee’s Twitter. Oh, and I saw Don Shula driving around the field before the game on a golf cart! Very cool.
After that moment it was all down hill and we don’t need to talk about it except to say I got an amazing picture of the pick six Tannehill threw. Sign. Anyway, the pictures from the whole weekend are great and you should check them out by clicking here or using the Flickr slideshow below. Go Dolphins!