Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Jackson US Summer Tour 2013 - New York City

     From Philadelphia we took a train into New York City for a day with the main purpose of seeing the Atlanta Braves take on the N.Y. Mets at Citi Field.  We went in a bit earlier to spend some time walking around and to meet up with our friends, Andy and Amy who live in Brooklyn.  The weather was hot and the tourists were out in droves, but it ended up being a great day.  As a bonus, we also got to visit Marisa's sister Kendra, since she was in town for work.

     Highlights from our time in NYC:

1.  Braves vs. Mets at Citi Field
     While it's not really my official goal to see a baseball game at all of the ballparks in America, it is fun seeing a game in different cities - especially when you can see your home team.  I guess Citi Field is one of the newest baseball stadiums in the country and just hosted the All-Star game this year.  The only two bummers were that the Bravos lost 4-1 and we missed seeing Zach Wheeler (East Paulding HS alum) pitch for the Mets by couple of days.  Otherwise it was an awesome time.

Citi Field

Mr. Met

Shout out to Jackie Robinson since he played for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Local beer

Couldn't have asked for better weather.

2.  Times Square
     We had been to New York before, but it had been several years and it was nice to just walk around again along Broadway Street and take in the sights.

Empire State Building

Marisa loves mascots and there was a hoard of them outside the Toys R' Us.

We poked our heads into the Toys R' Us in Times Square and were blown away by the scale of the place.  They had this giant ferris wheel, an ice cream place, life-size Lego sculptures and several floors of awesomeness.

3.  Dinner in the park with Andy and Amy
     It was also nice to visit with our good friends we met in Frankfurt who now live in Brooklyn.  We wish that we would've had more time to explore their neighborhood, but time was short so we settled for dinner in a park and a couple of hours of catching up.  It was really good seeing them and we hope to have a return visit.

The crew in front of one of these temporary art exhibits in the park - piles of nautical rope, tied in knots, and died in bright colors.

4.  911 Memorial
     When we visited before in 2006, the plans were still in the works for the 911 Memorial and since it recently opened a year ago we definitely wanted to check it out.  The museum is still under construction, but they have opened two memorial pools where the previous foundations were for the World Trade Center.  Engraved along the guard rails are the names of all of the victims from the attacks and the rescue attempt.  I thought that it was very well done (and designed by a Georgia Tech architect) and serves as a very serene and contemplative monument.  The visit definitely brought us back, thinking about where we were and what we were doing at the time of the attack and it had an especially personal meaning for my step-dad who had a friend who died in one of the towers.

There are two pools that look identical, with waterfalls running down the side walls and falling down into the inner square, of which you cannot see the bottom.

Each pool is dedicated to different groups of victims with one pool containing names of those of the flights and rescue workers and the other with names of those in the WTC.

There is a master plan to build several new buildings around the park and I think that this one will be the largest of those - planned to be the tallest building in the USA upon completion.


5.  Bonus hangout with Kendra
     Although we would be visiting her in Massachusetts in a week, Kendra was in NYC for work so we got to meet up with her for drinks after the Mets game and again for lunch the next day.  It was random, but fun having a chat before our visit.  More details to come in the next post...

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