Step 58 - NKOTB Block Party #30: New Kids on the Block Fan Stories from Christina, Michele, Jessica, Sandy & Kim...and a Joey McIntyre Bonus
Join us as we hear some pretty amazing NKOTB fan stories from our friends Christina, Michele, Jessica, Sandy, and Kim! We also give you a bonus this week as we've included a Skype call between our friends (and MSCW Moderators) Michelle, Kristine, Charlene, Maria, Jackie, Kim, and Kelley and the discussion surrounding Joey McIntyre's latest podcast episode of The Move and the announcement of sale dates for the NKOTB Cruise #10! Come join the party!
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Christina's Meets Donnie Wahlberg
After hearing a lot of the awesome fan stories that you share on your podcast and blog, I thought I'd share one of mine. I never got to see an NKOTB concert until the reunion in 2008 and after that first show I was hooked. The tours tend to blend together a bit over the years but hopefully I get most of the details correct. This story occurred in 2010 during the Casi-No tour. I'm a family medicine doctor and I deliver babies as part of my practice. I'm only mentioning that because it is pertinent to the story. NKOTB were doing 3 Casi-No tour shows at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, IN in June 4, 5 and 6th. Some of my friends that I had met through the NKOTB reunion were going and I really wanted to go. We're from Milwaukee but Hammond is only a couple hours away. I was going to have to miss these shows because one of my pregnant patients was due that weekend and I didn't want to miss being their to deliver her baby. The weekend arrives and bless the NKOTB and Blockhead gods because my patient delivered her baby on June 4th. I called my girls and the enablers that they are, they said I should drive to Hammond for the show on Saturday. I was able to buy a ticket and off I went. I met up with my girls at the show and had a blast. During this tour, Donnie was doing spontaneous after parties with DJ Cheapshot after the concert. We didn't know this so we left after the show to head back to WI. We had driven separately because my friends had gone to the June 4th show. As I'm driving back, I get a text from my friend saying that she just saw online that Donnie was doing an after party at the Casino. We were about 20-30 mins into the ride home. We decide to turnaround and head back to the casino. We get there and catch the tail end of the after party.
We leave after that and were parked on different levels of the parking structure. My friend spots the white van that Donnie got into and we decide to follow it. It stops at a nearby hotel for awhile and then drops off some people. We were just hanging in the parking lot waiting. Then the van leaves and we follow it but end up losing it along the way. We thought it was a bust until one of our friends texts us that Donnie just walked into the hotel that she is staying at to go gamble at the casino. We hightail it over there and see the white van in the parking lot. We go inside and meet up with our friend and as we are walking, we spot Earl and then Donnie sitting at the food court. They were at Sbarro sitting at a table eating with some other fans. We hang out on a bench nearby and wait. Donnie gets up at one point and my friend goes to walk over to him and then Earl comes walking over. It was at that point that we realize that Donnie was going to the bathroom. My friend was so embarrassed as she almost followed him in there. Donnie comes out and spots us. At this point, I had met Donnie a few times at meet & greets and bus stalking so he recognized my face. He motions that he'll be over in a minute. He goes back to the table to finish his pizza as we wait patiently. Once he's done eating, he comes over to say hi to us. He saw me and got a big smile on his face and gave me the biggest hug ever. He thanked us for waiting patiently until he was finished eating. He just kept hugging me for the longest time and wouldn't let go. It was one of the best moments ever!!! We took pictures with him and then he had to go. I love him so much and moments like this are why we are all Donnie girls. My 13 y/o self could never have imagined that this would ever happen. As you can see in the pictures, I started out the day with my hair down and looking cute and ended up with it in a bun by the time we saw Donnie. SMH.
Jessica's NKOTB Life Story
Follow Jessica: @jessicankotbsd
I finally decided to write down a little bit of my Nkotb life and I hope you enjoy it!
Well, just like a lot of us I have been a fan since 1989. In 4th grade I was at a friends house from school with all of our friends and one of the girls had the hangin tough vhs. It wasn’t the concert one, it was the one with the videos and little interviews. I could probably still recite the entire thing for you right now. I remember instantly knowing that Jordan was the man for me. I played the piano, he played the piano so we were basically soul mates. My mom got me the sheet music for hangin tough so I could learn it all on the piano. Of course I only ever learned I’ll be loving you forever and played it to death. I even wrote my name with knight as my last name in every page of that book. Anyway, back to that vhs tape. I still have it and I will never get rid of it. That part where Jordan finds all the roses that were delivered for them and the pillow for joe and he says nobody loves me, I wanted to give him a hug and say I love you jordan! I love you! I still love you. You know what you did. So I watched that tape constantly and I covered my walls with every magazine tear out and poster I could get my hands on. Still have all of those too. I was never able to see them in concert then and wouldn’t until just a few years ago. It wasn’t until the main event tour with nelly and tlc. When they first reunited I just didn’t know anybody who was interested in going. It wasn’t until the main event tour that I decide screw it! Even though I still don’t have any friends who would want to go, I’m going to go by myself! So I did. I live in San Diego and I found a good ticket for the show in Anaheim so I drove up there and saw Nkotb for the first time and I just died. All of the feels came back in a second and I couldn’t believe after so many years that I was in the same room as these guys. I was instantly obsessed again and I drove home and immediately bought a ticket for the show in San Diego for the next night and went alone again. Since then I have seen them again this last tour in San Diego and I’ve been on 2 cruises, you guessed it, by myself. I met some really great people both years on the cruise and the hugs and pictures and everything I’ve been able to experience with the guys has been everything I could ever have wished for. My 10 year old self wouldn’t have believed me if I could have told her about all of this! None of them follow me on twitter or Instagram and I know that they wouldn’t remember me if I saw them today, but I feel so lucky to have these experiences and memories and I never want them to stop. On this last cruise during the photo op, joey looked at me and said, where did I see you today? Did we take a picture? We hadn’t, I said no not this year, not yet. I didn’t even care that he must have been thinking of someone else. As far as I was concerned, Joey McIntyre and I just had a conversation that he started. After my selfie with Donnie after waiting outside in the wind and the rain he said “love you” as I walked away. He really does love us all and the more I know him the more I want to be a better person. Just a couple weeks ago I drove up to LA and found their star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Someday I hope to be able to do an ultimate for one of their concerts and I will definitely keep on cruising. One thing I will say about going on the cruise alone is that it can feel awkward sometimes when you’re waiting for the lido deck party to start and you’re just standing there by yourself. I can be a little shy too when it’s up to me to start up a conversation or introduce myself which doesn’t help either, but everyone I have met on those cruises and at the concerts have been so nice and welcoming. I have seen some girls get pretty nasty a couple of times on the cruises. This last cruise I saw 1 girl get in another girls face and I have no idea about what. Two years ago a girl in front of me yelled at me for letting someone through to get to their friends. Everyone is packed in for the lido deck parties and I get it, people get irritated, tired and annoyed with getting bumped into and pushed around but we still need to be nice to each other!! Anyway that really is a tiny part of the whole experience and the good parts almost make that stupid stuff disappear. I have the best time on the cruise and at the concerts and I’m so thankful that I am able to go. It’s a blockhead thing you know what I’m sayin!!!
Thank you so much for your podcast and sharing all of these super cool stories. I never get tired of hearing about other people experiences and I hope we all continue to make more memories with each other! If you see a girl wandering around the ship by herself that might be me so come and say hi!!
Sandy's New Kids on the Block Story
Visit Sandy's Blog - it's amazing!!!! http://runningintheautumnrain.blogspot.com/2017/11/nkotb-cruise-2017-recap-part-1-wedthur.html
Hi Brooke and Nikki! I know you’ve already read my NKOTB Cruise recap on my blog but I also know how much you love to hear fans’ entire New Kids story. So here it is: my 29 year love affair with the 5 adorable (and sexy) men of NKOTB!
The Early Years:
I first discovered the New Kids on the Block like so many girls did, in 1989. I heard ‘Please Don’t Go Girl’ on my little black Sony radio and fell in L-O-V-E with Joey McIntyre. Now, those who know me at all will probably spit out their @BlondiesbyJenny at that comment because everyone knows I am a die-hard Jordan girl (with strong Donnie tendencies… we are all Donnie girls after all!). But yes, in the early years I was all about sweet, little, curly-haired Joey. If I’m being honest though, it was more by default than anything else. He was the only one I thought I had a shot with since he was the youngest… and I was only 9!
I can remember doing all of my weekly chores just to earn New Kids posters, buttons, slap bracelets, and my totally awesome pink plastic watch with the guys’ faces plastered across the band. My very first poster ever was a black and white one of the band that I cleaned out my entire room for! I was positively giddy as we headed to Sam Goody in the mall to pick out my poster and while my dad helped me to hang it up ever so precisely between my windows where Joey and his Boston bandmates had the perfect lighting. I can also remember memorizing exactly how many seconds I needed to forward-wind or rewind on each side of my cassettes to get to ‘Step-by-Step’, ‘Hangin’ Tough’, ‘The Right Stuff’, and ‘My Favorite Girl’. I wore those tapes out!
It was in 1991, during their No More Games Tour that I had my first chance to see them in concert. Unfortunately, it was determined that I was too young to go to a concert yet and I had the unfortunate experience of being the only one in my entire troop to show up for the Girl Scouts meeting that night, because every single girl was at the concert!! My troop leader, bless her heart, did her best to make the night fun for me, but ultimately I was heart-broken. Making God’s eyes from twigs and yarn just didn’t compare to seeing the loves of my life perform on stage. Here’s the thing though, looking back I don’t think I would have been able to handle it anyway. I have always struggled with anxiety and often get overwhelmed by large crowds and lots of noise. I had no way of knowing this then, but it would be a full 26 years before I finally saw the New Kids live!
Inevitably the New Kids broke up. I don’t actually recall it happening but I remember missing them. And I clearly remember years later, watching in awe of their bravery while Jon and Jordan talked about their anxiety on Oprah. I couldn’t help but feel a connection to them as they sat tense and uncomfortable in those iconic chairs. The episode aired right around the time that I was becoming more aware of my own anxiety and it was oddly comforting to hear the Knight brothers talk about their own struggles.
When the group got back together in 2008, I wasn’t entirely sure how I felt about it. Part of me was eager to hear new music and maybe get to finally see them live. But another part of me wanted to always remember them as the iconic late 80s-early 90s boy band with the catchy pop hits and questionable style choices (rattails, and mullets, and overalls… oh my!). I never imagined they would be so popular the second time around, or that my future experiences with them would be so life-altering!
As much as I wanted to see them in concert at that time (and to see Jordan on his Unfinished tour), the stars didn’t align for me until this past summer during The Total Package Tour. I found out I was going to be in Chicago visiting my parents at the same time as NKOTB was touring there. So I called up my friend Kenlyn who lives in the area and asked her if she wanted to go. Since we’re both public school teachers we went with the cheapest tickets available, meaning we sat in the top row of the highest balcony. As the New Kids rose way up from underneath the stage and began singing “Give me one more night to love ya…” I cried. I literally cried. For 29 years, I had waited for that moment and it was even more amazing than I imagined it would be! Despite the guys looking like sexy little ants so far below, Kenlyn and I danced and sang like there was no tomorrow and my preteen obsession with NKOTB was reignited.
I hadn’t even gotten home from that trip yet when I contacted my friend Jaimie about going to see the guys again in Raleigh a few weeks later. This time around, I decided it was worth shelling out the money to get floor seats and we ended up on the aisle right by the B-stage. We stood a few short feet from Jordan as he swayed his hips to Block Party and rushed over with the crowd as the guys took the B Stage for Summertime, Games, and more. Jordan smiled right at me at one point and I miraculously caught the blurry proof on camera! As they made their way back down the aisle to the main stage, I got a quick hand squeeze from Joey, then Donnie, and finally my dear, sweet Jordan. I’m not gonna lie, I seriously considered running after Jordan to hug him and profess my undying love. But the sight of the hulking bodyguard following him (Victor!) brought me back to my senses. And I never washed that hand again. Just kidding, I’m a special ed. teacher and I wash my hands about 20 times a day. But I think about those hand squeezes fondly and often.
Nothing is Random:
What happened two days later ended up being one the most fun and life altering experiences of my life, and I owe it all to NKOTB! I was still riding the high from my concert experience in Raleigh when I decided on a whim to look on Ticketmaster and see where NKOTB were performing next. The answer was Charlotte, just 2 ½ hours from me. With 3 hours left before show-time, I took a chance and found a single front row ticket available for a ridiculously low price. Fate. I purchased the ticket, pinned on my ‘I Love Jordan’ buttons, jumped in the car, and headed to Charlotte without a second thought.
Now as I mentioned before, I have always struggled with anxiety, especially in situations that involve large crowds and a lot of noise. And I am not a particularly spontaneous person either (Type A all the way!). So it was a HUGE deal for me to go to a concert at the last minute and sit in the front row by myself! Only for you Jordan, Donnie, Jon, Joey, and Danny. To sum it up, I made 3 new Blockhead friends, danced my butt off, sang at the top of my lungs, got 2 winks and a huge smile from Jordan (swoon!), and felt absolutely zero anxiety what-so-ever. Life-changing.
It was only a week after that last concert that I made up my mind to really throw caution to the wind and sign up for the NKOTB Cruise. It would be my first time on a boat, first time out of the country, first time traveling by myself, and first time actually meeting the New Kids in person (including getting selfies with 4/5 of them!). I even tied a fundraiser for Remember Betty into the cruise and ran a mile on the boat in honor of breast cancer patients and survivors. Had I not gone by myself to that concert in Charlotte, I would never have convinced myself that I could do all of this. But I had, and I did. And the rest is history… http://runningintheautumnrain.blogspot.com/2017/11/nkotb-cruise-2017-recap-part-1-wedthur.html
I could talk forever about the New Kids, but I’ll stop here for now. I adore you guys and your Podcast and I appreciate you reading my story!
Hugs and #TWUGS,
Photos: 1- A blurry Jordan smiling at me from the B Stage in Raleigh, 2- my front row view of Donnie in Charlotte, 3- My selfies from the NKOTB Cruise 2017 (including Andrea Barber!), 4- With Jordan at the Meet-and-Greet on the
Kim's NKOTB Fandom Journey
Hi Brooke & Nicki,
My name is Kim and I'm from Wisconsin.
I can't tell you how happy I am to have found your podcast! You ladies have been not only my NKOTB outlet but have brought back so many memories of my childhood! So thank you, thank you, thank you.
I feel like I have so many NKOTB stories I could tell. I've been blessed to experience such amazing things. I don't remember exactly how I got into NKOTB but the earliest document picture is Christmas 1989 age 7 getting the Hanging Touch cassette. I do distinctively remember going to my room and jamming out on my new cassette player. It was on from there! My first love was Donnie, until the Step By Step album came out and Joey had grown up a bit and caught my eye. I've been a Joey girl ever since. Don't get me wrong Donnie still holds a special place in my heart too cause "We are all Donnie girls"!!
I did not ever see them live when I was younger but when they announced they were reuniting in 2008 I couldn't have been more ecstatic! I took my mom with me to my first NKOTB concert, we were 2nd from last row, total nose bleed but the moment they took the stage was indescribably magical! Tears of joy were shed. I never understood when I was a kid and would watch there concerts on tv why the girls would cry, but in that moment I completely understood! In 2009 my mom surprised me with 5 star vip, meet and greet! Best mom ever! The way meet and greets were done then you were given a letter and a group of 10 went behind the curtain. I knew if I wanted to be with Joey he had to be my main focus. I briefly hugged Jon, Jordan, and Danny then be-lined it to Joey. I was so star struck that the only words I could muster out was nice to meet you to each of them. As we were lining up for the picture I felt someone to my right put there arm around me and I looked over and it was Donnie!! I am beyond blessed to be standing between my first and second loves. Making memories to last a lifetime! As I thought the night couldn't be better we ended up with second row center seats! I couldn't have asked for a better experience! I did also go to 2010 concert. Then life happened I was finishing up college and getting married and doing the adult thing. My mom wasn't as into them as much as I was so she was less inclined to keep going to concerts.
In 2014 my best friend from high school Lisa and I had reconnected. I obviously had wanted to go on the cruise since #1 but timing just never worked out until then. On a whim in November 2014 we booked ourselves on Cruise #7! 2015 her and I attended the Main Event tour and it was just a small sampling of what lied ahead.
We both had said it was a once in a lifetime trip. To say the least her and I had the time of our lives! So much so that while lounging in the ocean in Grand Turk we decided we were going to be on #8!
2016 was the year of NKOTB for us! We went to Going Home with Donnie, Flew out to New York to see them perform at Coney Island, Cruise #8, and going to see Donnie and Jenny in the holiday parade in St. Charles where they were grand marshalls. My birthday fell over the cruise and as luck or fate would have it our meet and greet fell on my birthday. I had been telling Lisa ever since we watched season 2 of "Rock This Boat" that if Melissa's friends could get Jordan to jump out of a cake for her she, had to get Joey to give me a birthday kiss or at least say happy birthday. She had brought along a birthday tiara and a pin that read "kiss me it's my birthday" I decided I would wear them both to meet and greet, why not right! It's not everyday you can make a fool out of yourself in front of your favorite boys! I was standing with Jon that year so as the line up went I was first in our group line. Did I mention the pin light up and was flashing?!?! LOL! Danny was first and told me happy birthday. I melted a little there. Donnie gave me a hug, pulled me back looked in my eyes, pulled me back in and said I love you. Of course I said I love you too! Could this get any better? Jordan was Jordan, no words exchanged besides a hello. Next is Joey ahhhhh. He with that surprised, intrigued look squints and sees my pin. I point to my cheek. He tells me Happy Birthday and even asked how old I was lol. As I went in for the hug not knowing what to expect, he kisses me on the check!!! OMG JOEY MCINTYRE HAS KISSED ME!!!!!!! UM BEST.MOMENT.EVER!! I may have blacked out for a moment but I do remember thanking him for making my birthday wish come true. Jon as always embarrassed me with his famous hug and wished me a happy birthday as well. Good job Lisa, mission accomplished!
2017 has been an epic year as well! We got to go to the screening of "Fifty Shades Darker" for Jenny's Inner Circle series part of her show in St Charles. I got to watch "Fifty Shades Darker" with Donnie and Jenny! How awesome! (Insert fan girl voice here) We sat second row in the theatre after the movie is over is when Jenny was going to do her show and talk about the movie. Lisa and I were standing stretching our legs. It's hard to watch a movie in the second row lol. Anyways Donnie was standing in front of us, we were trying to not be fan girls but he must have known because he motioned for us to come down to where he was. Is this happening? He took selfies with us and gave me the biggest best hug I've ever gotten from him! Blockheads must stand out. It wad a great moment!
I was so excited when Joey announced he was doing his promo tour for "Return of the Mac" he came to Chicago and Lisa and I stood out in the freezing cold for over 3 hours. Well worth it! This was the first time seeing Joey that I had a plan on what I wanted to say to him. My turn came in line, we got to have one item signed as well. I chose "Meet Joe Mac" cd. I hadn't followed his solo career and had recently purchased all his solo albums. This particular album spoke to me, especially the song "Rain". As he was signing the cd insert I told him how much I loved the album and that "Rain" recently helped me get through a rough patch and gave me a new perspective on my situation. He was genuinely sweet and rubbed my shoulder as I was telling him how amazing he was. He thanked me for my kind words and said he was glad he could help. Out of all my pics/selfies with Joe this one has become my favorite.
For the Total Package tour I was lucky enough to see them 3 times. I took my husband to his first concert in Vegas and then attended both Chicago shows, along with Going Home with Donnie again.
The last night they were in Chicago we had meet and greet. We had snagged a group where we both got to be with our guys. Lisa Donnie, me Joey. Since #9 was falling on my birthday again I knew I needed to thing of another birthday wish from Joey. My wish was to dance with him. I had been pondering over if I was going to bring it up at this meet and greet or not. Again I was first in our group line. I can't remember what I said to Danny, or Jon. Donnie told me again he loved me! Of course I again said love you too. As crazy as it sounds him saying it seems so genuine! I told Jordan I loved his Facebook Lives. He said did you see last night? I said yes we had only left less then 5 minutes after you came out to the fence. He said oh I'm sorry. Wow Jordan Knight is telling me sorry! I swear Joey can pick out "Joey Girls" from a mile away, we locked eyes, a girl could get lost in those eyes for days.....ahhhhhh we said hello to each other hugged and I took my place to his left side. It seemed time was almost frozen and I decided what better time then now to talk to him about my up coming birthday wish as everyone else was filing in. I said I was going on the cruise and that my birthday was during the cruise again. I said last year you granted my birthday wish and I was hoping you could do that again this year. He said oh yeah what did I grant last year. I said a birthday kiss. He's like I did???? WOW! I never do that! (Holy shit I got a kiss from Joey and he doesn't do that?! Happy dance, happy dance) I said yep you did. He asked what I wanted this year and I said a dance. He said fuck yeah we can do that! He then asks what night, and answers his own question with fuck it we can dance every night. I said you're on! I have no idea how all of that was said during that short amount of time! On my way out I hugged him again and said thank you. Somehow his hand was in mine and I brought it to my lips and kissed his hand! Oh lord I still don't know how it happened but it did! LOL
For work reasons Lisa decided not to go on #9. I wasn't going to miss it, I can't not be on that boat! My mom the trooper she is decided to come along and we had a blast! She's officially a Donnie girl lol.
Our meet and greet we didn't have a photo group. Side note on the 3 cruises I've been on I've never had a photo group. My advice don't form one because 90% of the time they fall apart. Go down an hour or so before and find a your group, one who is close in line. This year first group we found needed a Joey girl. I'm right here!!!! This time around I decided to take a sassy approach. But seriously those eyes.....we said hi hugged and again I take my place on his left side. I said we need to talk. He looks at Jordan next to him like who is this girl. I said back in June we had a conversation about my birthday wish, and I asked that we could dance and you agreed. He said for sure we can make that happen. On my way out I said so I'll see ya later for that dance and he said yes. I wasn't too hopeful it would happen even if it didn't I was still going to have the time of my life! Fast forward to last night on the cruise. Joey and I hadn't been in the same area. I didn't want to force myself on him or be that girl. It was a little after midnight officially my birthday. I looked to my left and see that Joey is taking selfies not far from where we were. I looked at my mom and said well it's now or never. There of course there was a line and I had just hoped he wouldn't leave before I got my turn. We didn't have to wait to long and it's my turn I go up and immediately notice he had a plate of carrots and ranch sitting in his lap. How sweet to take selfies even when you're hungry! I said its officially my birthday, this isn't my birthday wish of a dance but a selfie with you is the next best thing! He said Happy Birthday.He then snapped the pic and handed me my phone back. I said thank you and turned to walk away. He reached out for me and stopped me and motioned for me to come back. He moved his plate of carrots and ranch, but his left arm around me, I put my arm around him and we danced, actually swayed to the chorus of the song playing. We even sang the verses. Ahhhhh! I have him the biggest hug and a kiss on the cheek thanked him and said you don't know how much this means to me!! As I walked away on cloud 9 happy tears steaming down my face, an excited blockhead grabbed me, hugged me and said I seen all that happen, awesome, so happy for you! I told her it was beyond amazing, no words. For the life of me I can't remember what the song was and I knew I even sang it. I know when I hear it again I'll know it!
Joey Mcintyre makes dreams a reality! I'm so grateful, thankful, and blessed for everything he has done for me!! I can't wait to see what 2018, NKOTB, and Kim get to experience!
Don't give up on #MissionInterviewJoey2018 I'm rooting for you!
Keep doing your thing ladies! You bring a smile to my face every time I listen! Hope to meet you on Cruise #10