Thursday, May 17, 2007

Finally, here is the rest of the Cooperstown report, as I watch game two of the Sox-Tigers twi-night doubleheader.

After we left the World Series room, we walked through the Education Gallery and made our way downstairs to the Hall of Fame Gallery after a brief stop in the Art of Baseball room. (Check out the great painting of Willie Mays.)

The Hall of Fame Gallery, where all the plaques are kept, is almost a church-like atmosphere. People speak in hushed voices as they look for their favorite Hall of Famers. We checked out Yaz, Mickey Mantle, Ted Williams and Jackie Robinson, among others. J. took this picture of the "First Five", the initial class of Hall of Famers inducted back in 1939 - Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Christy Matthewson, Walter Johnson and Honus Wagner).

Our next to last stop in the building was the Library area, where they have exhibits for writers and broadcasters, baseball movies and the bookstore. We had completed the Discovery Tour quiz, so J. got his pack of baseball cards.

Our last stop was the gift shop (of course) where we picked up a few souvenirs. By this time it was almost 1:00 (we had spent nearly 4 hours in the Hall), so it was time for lunch.

Every time I have been to Cooperstown, since my first visit with my family as a teenager, I have eaten at the Short Stop Restaurant. It's a nice little diner that serves standard diner fare. It's plastered in baseball memorabilia, of course, including some autographed stuff from some Hall of Famers that have eaten there. I even brushed my teeth there one morning when, in my younger days, I stopped in Cooperstown without a hotel reservation and ended up spending the night in my car in the Doubleday Field parking lot. Hey, I was younger and stupider in those days!

The Short Stop lived up to it's reputation. J. wolfed down a burger and I had my favorite, the club sandwich.

We then wandered around the village for a bit. Our first stop was Doubleday Field. It was a beautiful early Spring day, so we watched a couple of innings of a high school baseball game being played there. It really seemed to complete the experience, spending the morning looking at the history of the game and seeing an actual game in the afternoon. Next we stopped at the Doubleday Batting Cage, where J. took a few cuts and we discovered that he could throw 42 MPH at the radar gun (I'm sure it would have been a little faster if he had been able to warm up).

We headed back to the Hall of Fame (stopping in pretty much every souvenir store along the way) and checked out the sculptures in Cooper Park. There are sculptures of Johnny Podres pitching to Roy Campanella in the 1955 World Series, one of a player from the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League, and one of Satchel Paige, pictured above.

We spent a bit more time investigating Main St., had some ice cream, and decided to head for home. The ride home was thoroughly uneventful, with just a stop at a Subway to grab some dinner. We got home just before 9. It was an outstanding trip, and J. is a great traveling companion.


At 3:18 PM, Blogger John said...

Great pictures !


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