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Everything you need to know about the Bahamas Trip

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On Friday, the team leaves for the Bahamas, which means that on Sunday, Kentucky basketball will once again be back in our lives for real. This trip is the ultimate fix for the fan base that needs it the most, a treat so sweet just thinking about it gives me a toothache. Whether you’re watching at home or lucky enough to witness the games in person, here’s all you need to know about the Bahamas trip.

Let’s start off easy. Here is the schedule:

ksrbahamasschedule

What about broadcast coverage?

It’s a little bit confusing, so I’m glad you asked. If you’re following the games on the radio, here’s the schedule you need to know for the weekdays:

10:00 – 11:30 a.m.: Matt and Drew live from the Atlantis
11:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.: Ryan Lemond and Jared Lorenzen take over
12:30 – 1:00 p.m.: Matt and Drew live from the arena
1:00 – 3:00 p.m.: Tom Leach and Mike Pratt call the game (ESPNU or SEC Network television coverage)
Approximately 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.: Matt’s postgame show live from the arena

For the weekend games, there will be a 30-minute pregame show and an hour postgame show. The postgame shows have potential for hilarity because Matt will be doing them by himself from the arena while the media (all six of us), players, and fans shuttle back to the Atlantis. Apparently the arena isn’t in the nicest area of Nassau, so hopefully Tom Jurich doesn’t know any Bahamian gangs…

This is where the games will be played

@OhioStateHoops

@OhioStateHoops

In fact, that’s the Ohio State team practicing today. Speaking of…

North Carolina, Ohio State, Pitt, Ole Miss, and Cincinnati will also be playing exhibition games in the Bahamas

However, they will be playing against local teams like the Commonwealth Giants, Bahama All-Stars, Street Legends All-Stars, Providence Storm, Atlantis All-Stars, and the PJ Stringers. North Carolina and Cincinnati are the only teams that will still be in the Bahamas while Kentucky is there. If you’re really interested, here are their game times:

Aug. 15: North Carolina vs. Providence Storm, 5 p.m.; Cincinnati vs. P.J. Stringers, 7 p.m;
Aug. 16: North Carolina vs. Bahamas All-Stars, 5 p.m.

Luckily for Ole Roy, there’s a Johnny Rockets in the Atlantis resort so he can get his milkshake fix.

For those going to the Bahamas…

Get ready to spend even more money

This trip is not cheap. It wasn’t cheap when you booked it, and it sure as hell won’t get any cheaper once you’re there. Everyone I’ve talked to who’s been to the Atlantis says they’ll charge you for EVERYTHING, so heads up. For instance, there’s an additional 15% gratuity charge on everything you purchase, from coffee to candy bars to souvenirs. Also, there’s a one-time $20 bellman fee that you can’t avoid. Also, don’t move stuff in the mini-fridges. The items are on sensors, so if you move that $4.50 bottle of water, it’s yours.

My advice? Bring packaged food for snacks/breakfast. My husband and I can only afford to go four days (Thursday-Sunday), and we’re planning on taking plenty of granola bars, protein bars, beef jerky, packaged snacks, etc. as we can fit in our suitcases. As long as it’s commercially packaged, it’s fine to get through customs. Word is there’s a small grocery store and liquor store across the street from the resort so you can stock up on stuff at a much cheaper price. We’re packing a soft-sided cooler in our bag so we can take drinks down to the pool or beach. Or rather, my husband can do that while I work.

However, I say all of this and I’m sure it will only go so far. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime trip, and at some point, you just have to stop worrying about penny pinching and enjoy yourself. If you’re going on this trip, you know it’s expensive, but you also know it’s worth it for the memories. (At least this is what we’ll tell ourselves when the credit card bill comes.)

Oh yeah, pack sunscreen too. Your skin and wallet will thank you for it.

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Prepare for the hair braiders

If you are a female, prepare to have women come up to you on the beach and offer to braid your hair. No, this is not a fun sleepover-style bonding experience–they want you to pay them a good chunk of change to braid your hair Bahamian style. I will not be doing this.

Do the slide

Regardless of how you feel about water parks, the Atlantis has one of the best ones in the world. The main attraction is the “Leap of Faith” water slide, which is built like a Mayan Temple and drops riders 60 feet into a shark-filled lagoon. You’re inside a tube, of course, so the sharks can’t get you, but still, sharks. Back in 2008, a female reef shark apparently jumped out of its tank and landed on the slide, riding it down and dying in the chlorinated water. So, I guess it’s a little haunted, too.

I have a feeling we’ll see a video of the team going down this slide at some point, possibly with Willie wearing his beloved GoPro camera on the ride down. (Make it happen, KyWildcatsTV!)

Prepare for a line

Cruise ship passengers can buy a day pass to the water park, as can people staying at other hotels, so it will be busy. I read that if you go after the cruise shippers head back to their boats in the late afternoon, it’s not as bad, which is perfect, because we’ll be busy with basketball until then anyways.

For those watching at home…

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Don’t forget to take your earphones to work

Every game starts at 1 p.m. ET, smack dab in the middle of the workday. For the three games during the week, plan on taking your earphones to listen to the radio coverage online, or if you are an expert at angling your monitors/arranging windows, watch it on WatchESPN.com. Don’t forget to keep a window open for the KSR Live Blog.

Plan lunches accordingly

It’s like March Madness all over again. Don’t worry, your boss will understand if your lunch runs late. Even if he/she doesn’t, whatever. It’s Kentucky basketball.

Clear off the DVR

If there’s no way you can see the games during the day, make sure you have space to record them on your DVR. This can understandably cause some angst. For instance, it’s safe to delete those old “Game of Thrones” episodes because they’re on HBOGO, but what about the tournament games from this past season and 2012? (Don’t roll your eyes, you know you have some of them saved too.) Delete responsibly, and for the love of God, cancel that season pass for “House Hunters.” It’s time.

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

27 Comments for Everything you need to know about the Bahamas Trip



  1. Greer
    8:07 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Tiger Woods is at PT’s right now..loser



  2. Sharon
    8:08 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Do you know what channel the SEC network will be on Time Warner? I can’t find the information.



    • SEC Channels in Lexington
      8:39 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

      In Lexington SEC Network will be 516 for Non HD Subscribers and HD will be on 517 so I have been told by Time Warner CSR



  3. dude
    8:11 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Was at Atlantis in 2008. I don’t remember a grocery store across the street, we had to drive to one. It is MUCH cheaper there. We ate at Johnny Rockets multiple times. While it wasn’t what I would call cheap it wasn’t breaking the bank either. There was an Outback across the bridge. We decided to walk. There were a lot of people just walking around and one guy tried to give my wife a branch off of a tree, which made her very uncomfortable. If you ride the jet skis have a watch with you. I negotiated an hour, but I’m pretty sure I didn’t get much more than 30 minutes. Also, apparently they don’t use gas for jet skis there. My gas light came on, I took it back in. They guy pushed the reset button and said, “just hit reset, mon”.



  4. gibbysmalls45
    8:16 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    +1 on the bringing sunscreen. I stopped at Atlantis on a cruise last month and forgot my sunscreen on the boat. $11.50 for a 2-oz bottle. Yikes.



  5. ukjonny9
    8:25 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Just to give people an idea of the prices, my friend was taken there by her parents about 7 or 8 years ago. Her and her father went to lunch one day at the resort and just got two sandwiches with chips on the side and soft drinks. She wanted to pick up the bill as a thank you gesture. She slid it towards herself and saw that it $50. She just slid it right back.



  6. Rossalaska
    8:26 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Regarding the hair braiding, my wife had her hair braided many, many years ago when we went to the Bahamas and she burned her scalp. If you braid, wear a hat or put sun screen on the scalp.



  7. Billy B.
    8:34 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Stay at the Sandals, Cable Beach! Eat a huge breakfast, maybe twice, have the guys at the beach grill cook up a few burgers, fries and whatever else looks good. Take shuttle to Nassau and there are boats that take you to the Atlantis island. Watch all the games and party for a few hours, grab shuttle back to the Sandals Resort and party like there is no tomorrow. Six square meals and all the drinks are on the house!



  8. trublususu
    8:37 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    #2 I called TWC last night. SEC Network will be on channels 516 (standard def), 517 (high def) and 518 for extras.



  9. Rise
    9:11 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Be prepared to be hackled by the locals. They are persistent people. Every 10 feet someone will ask if you want your hair braided. Do not rent a moped. I have seen many wrecks with tourists not understanding local traffic laws/signals. They drive in the opposite lane. Be safe, have fun, and bring a fat wallet.



  10. Houston Wildcat
    9:14 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Expensive? You’re going to work. Charge it to Matt.



  11. sharknado
    9:33 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    everything that dies haunts the location of its death. even sharks.



  12. Boblantis
    9:49 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    On elf the most fun, yet expensive places you’ll ever go, inside the resort. Outside, once in Nassau everything is dirt cheap. Actually met Patrick Ewing in the casino as he was going to his own private craps table. Enjoy. Water park is fantastic



  13. Badgercat
    9:58 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Ohio State is there now? I’ll watch for their games on ESPN.



  14. Tickets?
    10:02 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Hey KSR folks, how does one grab some tickets for one game down there? Not sure what the Bahamian scalping network looks like



  15. Bahamamama
    10:03 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    What about the days off?? What’s the team doin!?



  16. CardsFanAtlantisFan
    10:05 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Cards fan here…for those going to Atlantis it’s awesome. Make sure you check out Bahamian Grill and Mesa Grill….great restaurants on the property. The water park is fantastic too!



  17. Mocha
    10:10 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Will be in shanghai for this entire tourney! Crap.
    Guess I’ll be watching the games at 1am local time the next day from the laptop.
    Go cats!



    • who cares
      12:57 am August 7, 2014 Permalink

      thanks for update weirdo!!



  18. Been there!
    10:35 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Leaving for cheaper food and groceries sounds good but everything there is filthy except for Atlantis!



  19. BlueDub
    11:17 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Was there 2 years ago, marketplace just outside the entrance to the resort. Go there to buy beer and take it to the pool/beach. Locals on the beach will try to sell you a drink where they chop the top off of a coconut and pour punch into it out of gallon jug;refills are cheaper. Those will knock you on your a$$. Wife and I each got a slice of pizza and a beer when we first got there…$50 bucks. Casino is right-sized and loved it. They do have a sports book!



  20. BlueDub
    11:18 pm August 6, 2014 Permalink

    Also, waterslide through the sharks is so fast, and water spraying you in the face, you can’t even see a shark. My advice is to wear goggles, and it’s so steep going down you may go airborn for a split second. STEEEEP.



  21. UKBlue
    12:54 am August 7, 2014 Permalink

    Anyone going who plans on using their cell phone any real period of time for calls, internet & especially text messages should seriously get an international plan rider at least for the time you’re out of the country. If you don’t, you’ll have a big expensive surprise waiting for you in your next bill.



  22. catcrazy4sure
    8:49 am August 7, 2014 Permalink

    My wife and I went to Atlantis for a few days in April. It is a wonderful place to see but the prices are way out of reason. If you want some booze buy it at the Nassau airport, upon arrival (mostly rum is available there), or in downtown Nassau, put it in your luggage, and then check into Atlantis. Also take some snacks in your luggage. When taking cabs to & from the airport ask the driver for a price quote BEFORE you get in the cab. Atlantis has appropriate cab fares posted outside the front entrances, but the taxi drivers will add to this fare, if they can get away with it. Also, never forget a 15% tip is built into nearly everything you buy in the Bahamas. A steak dinner on the Atlantis property cost us a little over $300 and 2 slices of pizza and 2 colas cost us $35 at another eatery. Overall, the average cost of a day at Atlantis was in the $800-$900 range for the 2 of us. This included room, food, beverages, a couple of t-shirts, etc. We are not gamblers so we didn’t spend much in the casino. Nevertheless, we loved it. Don’t miss the aquarium (aka The Digs) it comes with the hotel room…..enjoy!



    • stevem
      9:19 am August 7, 2014 Permalink

      Stayed at Atlantis last summer. Buffet breakfast $35 plus tax and tip. Place was over-run with kids. Took a couple of nice sail trips but all in all couldn’t wait to get out of there.



  23. Tom Tom Cats fan
    12:11 pm August 7, 2014 Permalink

    Took my family to a place called One and Only Beach Club in Nassau. It right up the beach from Atlantis and is owned by same people that own Atlantis so we got in at Atlantis for free. Atlantis is awesome but it does get crowded with the big cruise ships dropping off people by the boatload. Atlantis has great beach. Best water park I have ever seen. I didn’t like the “Leap of Faith”. Going through the tubes at the bottom is hot and steamy and claustrophobic. The lazy river ride is absolutely incredible. Has an incredible indoor aquarium. Great restaurants. Nobu’s is there. Casino. Nightlife. Its a beautiful property. However, the cost of doing anything there is very expensive. The posts about the food, drinks, etc… are absolutely correct. Food, drinks, especially alcohol… are crazy expensive. It costs hundreds of $$$$ daily to eat and drink there and I am talking ham sandwiches, etc…. But it is a lot of fun if you go and I’m jealous of everyone that gets to go and get that close to the action during these games.



  24. michael higginbotham
    5:06 pm August 7, 2014 Permalink

    what channel on twc in berea