Growing up in Boston, 1500 miles away from Fort Myers, it would be tough for some to relate to such a different place in the country. Since I was a year old, I was coming down to Fort Myers every year (sometimes many times a year) to visit family that lived down here.
When college came around, I would Spring Break at Fort Myers every year. Still to this day, I am down there every March. The Beach to me always had lots of meaning to me. So many memories over the years walking at night, eating, and drinking and learning the place better than some places I frequent more often.
We wanted to share some pictures of Fort Myers Beach so they forever will be remembered what most of the people who have been there remember. The beach will forever be changed, but hopefully in time FMB will bounce back and rebuild stronger.
Hopes and Prayers to anyone who lost their livelihoods.
It’s that time a year again we’re we pick a NFL stadium we haven’t been to and go see the Patriots play on the road. When we saw Green Bay on the Schedule for the Patriots, we knew we had to go see the Fenway Park of NFL Stadiums. This will be stadium number 18 for us (19 if you want to say we say both the Giants and the Jets play home). I know its technically the same stadium but for teaming counting we’ll call it 19.
Notable Award: Easy to walk to from downtown and great views of the 3 rivers and downtown Pittsburgh.
PNC Park is a new park, but you can tell it was built for a small market team. Likes its sister city to the east, Philadelphia, the Pirates were a victim of a concrete donut which they shared with the cities football team, the Stealers. The former stadium was Three Rivers Stadium and was built in the early 70’s a result to build two new stadiums for the cities sports team for the price of one. As talked about earlier, the concrete donut was a staple to many cities in America during this time.
In the late 90’s Pittsburgh and their teams decided they needed to break up and get their own stadiums. PNC Park was designed and built for the Pirates, who at this time were already in a 10 year playoff drought, so the fund were not exactly their for them, and the stadium design reflects that directly.
Now don’t get me wrong, the stadium is very nice, but basic. It reminds me of a slightly bigger minor league park. It is a cookie cutter of a basic ball park with nothing special about it to make it unique. The facade along the stands is an odd choice of slate that has a pink tone to it. It seems like it was placed their in a last ditch cheap effort to cover the concrete.
There is a Outback in left field, where if you get in before the game and order food and drinks during the game, you can watch the pirates for free, which is a really cool feature. The crew and I spent a few innings in there prior to getting to the game. The game we went to was against the Nationals, who at this time had just become a team a year prior and as a result, there wasn’t a huge turn out but we had a good time.
While sitting in the stands there is a beautiful view of downtown Pittsburgh, the rivers and the beautiful yellow painted bridges that cross them. One such noted bridge is the Roberto Clemente Bridge. We stayed downtown and we walked about 20 minutes from our hotel, over the bridge and to the game. It was a beautiful summer Sunday. Pittsburgh has a very limited subway system, so walking really was the only way.
As for being Sunday, that led to absolutely nothing to do downtown after the game. We walked back to our hotel, went down to the restaurant and that was empty. we searched for a bar or a strip club and there was nothing. The city looked like a set of a movie with hardly any cars anywhere. It was just as well though, we had left Phillie that morning at 5:00AM to make the 1PM game. It was about a 4 hour a drive from Phillie to Pittsburgh. We took a nap after the game an went exploring.
My cousin and I went down to the bar in the hotel to check it out. There we met a bartender who was very helpful at he Double Tree we were staying. He sent us to this park of town which for the life of me I can’t remember. It was a 10 minute cab ride and about a 30 minute walk back. It was a street in Pittsburgh full of bars, pizza joints and little dive restaurants. For a Sunday night the club we went into was hoping. It is in fact the only city I have ever been to that the girls weren’t impressed with the Boston Accent.
If you are planning on visiting PNC, I would suggest stay downtown, walk to the game and maybe plan for a friday or Saturday night. There will probably be more going on in the old blue collar town. I heard there are a lot of bars to check out before the game around the stadium. Would definitely visit again and the experience was nice, I was just a little disappointed with the over all stadium design specially after seeing Camden and CBP prior.
Notable Award: Like Camden Yards, its a newer model stadium with the feel of an old time baseball stadium. A batters park, with great views from any seat and the cheapest beers in the majors, 6 dollar 22oz Sam Adams, can’t beat that!
With the red brick facade, large open concourses and nice view of downtown Phillie, Citizens Bank Park makes its way into the top 5 parks in the majors. Opening in 2004 and replacing the old Vet stadium, which was a multi-purpose stadium for baseball and football, the Phillies improved their appearance over night. The Vet was built in the days of the concrete donut style which in the 60’s, cities seen as a great way to build a modern stadium for two of their pro teams and save money, but the concrete donut never made a good baseball park.
In the late 90’s, there was a movement within baseball teams to make their stadiums more of a baseball park, and less of just a building that they play in. They wanted to make the stadium park of the team, and the Phillies jumped on that band wagon.
The city of Philadelphia took over the souther part of their city and dedicated it to all their sports teams. They built several complexes to hold their football, basketball/hockey teams and of course Citizens Bank Park for the Phillies. All the stadiums have huge parking areas for tail gating and ease of travel. Also the SEPTA has trains that run right down to the fields, so if your staying downtown, you can get their in about 30 minutes with no problem.
Once inside the stadium, you’ll see easily navigable concourse that are wide, easily marked and have great views of the field while you walk around the main level. Once you get to where your seat is, you’ll find several choice of food and drinks, included those cheap 22 oz beers. Now this was in 2007, so things may have changed since then, but at the time it was the best value in baseball.
In the outfield where the bullpens are, you can stand over and watch the pitchers warm up. This feature also is found in the Phillies spring training park in Clearwater Florida. Its a nice standing room only area where you can enjoy the game and see the process a pitcher takes to get warmed up for the game. In addition to this, the park is completely accessible 360 degrees, meaning you can get to all parks of the park by walking in both directions on the main level.
In addition to a great park, Phillie is a great city. A small major town that feels a lot like Boston. Boston and Phillie are both the little brothers to NYC, but are a stones throw away if you want to go for a quick visit. Philies transit system is easy to use and gets to all parts of the downtown area. if you were going to stay the night, I would suggest staying downtown, near broadway. When your there, visit the museum of art and run up the stairs like in rocky, go check out the Liberty bell and of course have a Phillie cheese stake.