It isn't Buffalo; it's about 1,000 miles across the country. But Kansas City Bills Backers President Joe Cirincione says the Fox & Hound Bar and Grill feels like a little piece of his hometown on Bills gamedays.
"It's amazing when people start talking about who worked at Bethlehem Steel, where they lived outside of Buffalo, and what they did during this and that snowstorm," Cirincione said. "There's an automatic link."
Not only does the club bring together those one-time Buffalonians who have moved to the Kansas City area – Cirincione says the club is frequented by travelers just passing through who want to watch the game with fellow Bills fans.
During last week's season opener against the Jets, he was chatting with a couple traveling cross-country when he realized they knew his sister-in-law. "It's things like that – those connections – that you find when you're watching the Bills games out there with everyone," Cirincione said of the two-degrees of separation he often finds amongst his Kansas City Backers and their visitors. "It's an immediate welcoming thing."
In fact, Cirincione and his co-president Joe Leary graduated from Canisius College only a year apart and met in Kansas City through the Backers club.
The Kansas City club was founded in the early 1990s by Ed Blinco, and was made an official Backers club by Cirincione and Leary in '97. Through a grassroots effort, it began to grow from its original group of four to about 25 regulars each Sunday, ranging in age from 30 up to 70.
Cirincione says newcomers check for the local Backers club when they move into Kansas City or when they're just driving through, and keep coming back to enjoy the games with a group that makes them feel at home.
While the Bills await the Kansas City Chiefs this week for their home opener in Buffalo, Cirincione and his club will be watching down in Kansas City – but make no mistake, they'll be rooting for their hometown Bills, of course.
If you're in Kansas City and want to join in on the fun, contact Joe Cirincione at firstname.lastname@example.org or head to the Fox & Hound Bar and Grill at 10428 Metcalf Ave in
Overland Park, Kansas this Sunday to watch your Bills take on the Kansas City Chiefs in Buffalo.
Not in Kansas City? Click here to locate your local Bills Backers club.