My Travels – MLB Stadiums: Yankees Stadium, New York Yankees (September 20, 2013)

After our stop at Fenway, we spent the night in Boston and did some sightseeing the next morning. We did a mobile walking tour of Harvard with an app I downloaded from iTunes Store. I don’t know what I should have expected when I thought of visiting Harvard, but it turned out to be really smart college kids who dress… like college kids. Hoodies, jeans, ear buds, Chucks. We did step into the church on Harvard’s campus. It has a beautiful cathedral ceiling with a massive pipe organ.

That night we took the Amtrak out of the Back Bay Station to the Big Apple, the City that Never Sleeps, the one and only New York City. We took a taxi ride to our hotel and I firmly believe everyone needs the experience of riding in the back of a taxi through NYC. The heart rate alone is worth the taxi ride.

JK - Top of the RockWe did the usual sightseeing while we were in NYC. We walked through Central Park, which is an amazing way to spend a day. If you have $12, take a row boat out on the water for up to an hour. We also saw the Top of the Rock (30 Rock). If it was a year earlier, I would have asked Kenneth to give us a tour. Sadly, those days are over. I can say that Top of the Rock is much cheaper than the Empire State Building and it has a better view, especially of Central Park.

On our way to Yankee Stadium, we stopped by the American Museum of Natural History for a tour. It was packed but a very good tour. If you’re kicking around Central Park and want to step back into time, stop by the museum. And no, I didn’t see Ben Stiller or any displays coming to life.

We took the subway to Yankee Stadium and I had flashbacks to when we were rained out almost exactly two years earlier. We were sitting seven rows off left-center field with a $5 umbrella and a bucket of fried chicken when the game was postponed against the Red Sox before a single pitch was even thrown. I almost cried. Almost. This visit was all about crossing Yankee Stadium off our list.

The Yankees honored Ichiro Suzuki for his 4,000 major league hits with a pre-game service and the game was underway. It was a great game as the Yanks beat the Giants 5-1 off an A-Rod grand slam. After two years of waiting, we finally checked Yankee Stadium off our list: twenty-six down, only four more to go!

If you’re wanting to visit Yankee Stadium, here are some things we learned from both our visits.

  • Yankee StadiumIt’s New York: bring an umbrella. Everywhere. A big umbrella. Big enough to cover you and anyone else with you. Ironically, it didn’t rain at all during this trip, but I won’t make that same mistake twice. Also, bring a jacket for early or late in the season when the temperature dips towards the end of the game.
  • When we were rained out two years ago, Ticketmaster refused to give refunds to any ticket holders for the rainout. Thankfully, we bought our tickets through StubHub. I called StubHub once we got back to Denver and they credited our account for the full ticket price. Since then, we have bought our sports tickets almost exclusively from StubHub. A great exchange policy by StubHub cost Ticketmaster almost 60 sports game tickets (and counting).
  • If you’re heading to Yankee Stadium, don’t drive. It’s New York: take a taxi, or brave the subway. If you’re going to spend any amount of time (over 3 days) in NYC, get a 7 day pass. If you’re taking the subway everywhere, it will pay for itself very quickly.
  • Ride the B, D, or 4 trains to get to Yankee Stadium. All of them stop at 161st St. at Yankee Stadium. The stop is on the southeast corner of the stadium.
  • The food at Yankee Stadium is very good. It has New York style pizza, Italian sausage, loaded nachos, and lots more. Come hungry and enjoy a great dinner.
  • Get to the stadium at least two hours before game time if you want to see the Yankees Museum and Monument Park (two separate areas of the ballpark). It’s worth getting in line early to make sure you experience both of them.

JK - Yankees Monument ParkFor the rest of our time in NYC, we bought discount tickets from TKTS to see the Phantom of the Opera. It was my first time seeing a Broadway on Broadway! It was one of the best, if not the best, theater experiences I’ve ever had. We also toured the New York Public Library (no ghosts – I checked), ate a great dinner at McGee’s Irish Pub & Restaurant (inspiration for McLaren’s in HIMYM), and grabbed lunch one day at Katz’s Deli (When Harry Met Sally).

We also got a chance to worship with Hillsong NYC at their Irving Plaza location. I have never seen people lined up for two city blocks just for church. God is doing incredible work through Hillsong’s ministry and I’m glad we got a chance to be a part of it for at least one weekend.

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