Tuesday, September 7, 2010

In Closing...

I know it has been a while since I've graced these pages, but just wanted to provide an update and closing to the Summer Road Trip 2010! Michael finished up the U.S. Nationals in Milwaukee and then flew to Texas to drive with me back up to DC. Here are a few pics of our stop in Memphis, where we toured Graceland.

After a fun summer, I am now back in DC to start law school at American University. So far everything has been going well, despite all the time I spend reading cases. Who knew that people would sue for some of this stuff?! I am hoping to update the blog periodically should any interesting ideas cross my mind or when I find time to take a short jaunt somewhere.

I had a great time this summer and really appreciate everyone reading the blog! It always made my day to hear readers say things they enjoyed or found interesting during our travels. And a big thanks to the Midwest for making it a very memorable summer!

Friday, August 13, 2010

Miller Time!

While in Milwaukee, Michael decided to take a day off sailing and we checked out the town. Of course the first stop was the Miller Brewing Headquarters (you guys know I can't resist a good factory tour).

We took the tour and it is amazing the production they are able to do. The Milwaukee plant produces half a million cases PER DAY. That all goes into a warehouse that is the size of five football fields and the product only stays there for 24 hours before it is shipped out. So they are not only producing, but distributing half a million cases every single day. CRAZY! And 60% of what they produce in Milwaukee goes straight to Chicago. Clearly Chicagoans really like their Miller! Since they were acquired by a South African company, the Milwaukee plant also produces Fosters and Peroni for distribution here in the states.

After the tour, it was time for the tasting. I had the MGD 64, which is brewed so that it is never heated during the brewing process. They also had a harvest beer, which was very tasty.

We decided no trip to Milwaukee would be complete without a trip to see the Brewers play at Miller Park. We were able to scalp tickets to the game against the Arizona Diamondbacks. For those interested, we chatted with the scalper and he said the best way to get tickets for an event is to scalp them at the park, not buy them online. About two hours before the game, all the online guys take their tickets down and then give them to the scalpers to go sell at the park. You don't have a handling fee and they are looking to unload them (even below face value) because obviously any tickets left in their hands is lost revenue. I wouldn't recommend this for an event that's highly sought after, but pretty good for your average sports outing! We were able to sit 11 rows behind first base for about the same price we would have paid to sit in the second level outfield. Tremendous!

Miller Park was a great stadium. It feels like one of the newer parks, but still has a lot of charm. Obvioulsy plenty of Miller being served and some great Brats! The Brewers lost, but it was an entertaining game nonetheless. A great finish to my time in Milwaukee!

The Fighting Irish

I know I'm late posting this but on our drive to Milwaukee, we drove through South Bend, IN - the Home of the Fighting Irish! Of course we had to make a stop. While there isn't much to the town, the campus was absolutely gorgeous. All of the architecture has a gothic feel, with spires, curved archways, and gargoyles. The gold dome was shining as the sun was setting and the lawns were pristine.

And of course we had to check out the stadium. We weren't able to see much, but the stadium is right on campus, complete with a statue of Lou Holtz. Big thanks to Wyatt for giving us plenty of recs for our stop. And as you may have heard, UT and ND are going to do a home and away series beginning in 2015. It can't get here fast enough!

Here are some pics:

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Bye Bye Ohio!

Over the weekend, Michael raced in the Great Lake Championships. A big thanks to Mike Austin for letting me tag along on his boat to watch the racing. It was a beautiful old wooden boat from 1947 and was very cool. Michael placed 6th in the regatta and we were finally able to leave Ohio!

We made the drive to Milwaukee and Michael has been practicing for the US Nationals. This is the biggest regatta of the summer and all of his training has been leading up to this race!

Milwaukee is a really fun city and I was really surprised at how beautiful and how much culture it had to offer. On Monday, we had a great dinner at Coquette Cafe (thanks to Leah for the recommendation!), which was a wonderful French restaurant. I also went to the Milwaukee Art Museum, which was wonderful. They had a great sampling of art from many different periods - everything from baroque to pop art. There was also a big focus on German art, given that Milwaukee has a big German heritage. The top floor of the museum showcased the collection of Mrs. Bradley (no relation) and housed over 400 pieces of her personal collection which was donated to the museum. She had everything from Picasso to Rothko, and I really loved the exhibit.

We'll see what else Milwaukee has to offer!

Friday, August 6, 2010


Yesterday I decided to check out what else Sandusky had to offer and stumbled upon the Marblehead Lighthouse, which was built in 1821. The tower is 65 ft tall and there were 77 stairs up to the top. The lighthouse keeper used to climb a wooden ladder with whale oil and fill up the lamps at the top for the passing ships. Now it is operated by the Coast Guard and a green light flashes every 6 seconds. The view was really pretty and you could see several islands from the top.

As I was driving back to town, I stumbled upon the Prehistoric Forest. I only know about these from Tommy Boy and have actually never seen one in person. I decided the opportunity was too good to pass up. I discovered that basically you pay to walk through a forest that has dinosaurs made out of fiberglass. The funny part was that some of the creatures weren't even true dinosaurs. For instance, there was a huge preying mantis that I'm pretty sure wasn't around in the Jurassic Period. The dinosaurs were also painted in crazy colors, like a neon orange teradactyl.

Overall I'd say the Prehistoric Forest fits right in with Sandusky - amusing yet it doesn't make any sense!

Thursday, August 5, 2010

A Wild Ride

After a long day of sailing, Michael and I decided to check out what all the fuss was about at Cedar Point. Cedar Point is the amusement park in Sandusky that is the focal point of town. Opened in 1870, the park boasts 17 roller coasters (the world record for most coasters at one park) and is the only park that has 4 coasters over 200 ft. It is located on Lake Erie and you can see the water when you're clicking up the coasters.

We decided to start off slow, but there were no "little" coasters at the park. Michael's favorite was the Raptor, where you hung down off the track. We also went on the Mantis, which was the stand up coaster. My favorite was the Magnum XL-200, which was a Hyper Coaster (over 200 ft). It was the last ride we went on and it was pitch black. The trip up to the top was long and the drop was STRAIGHT down! There were also some tunnels, which was pretty cool.

We were in line for the Millenium Force, which stands over 300 ft, but the power failed so we weren't able to go on it. We had a great time and I can see why people come to Sandusky!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Where Am I???

We have arrived in Sandusky, OH and I was definitely not prepared for this.

Sandusky is home to Cedar Point, which claims to be "The Roller Coaster Capital of the World!" While this may sound like we've hit the jackpot, I'd say we've lost big time.

Apparently this amusement park is a big attraction for people in the area to vacation. The best way I can describe it is "it ain't Disneyland." If you have access to a mobile home, are sporting lots of tattoos, and prefer to wear t-shirts with huge holes cut on the arms, this is your Heaven. I was looking around at the diner where we have breakfast each morning and just picturing the family next to us packing up the kids, with a Marlboro Red dangling out of mom's lips, trying to decide which pair of denim shorts you should pack for Junior.

I have been to other parts of Ohio and am glad to say that this atmosphere is local to Sandusky. And to top it all off, it is PACKED! Hotels are super expensive - imagine paying $100 for a Saturday night at the Motel 6!

I think the other key factor here is the amount of waterparks. While some may disagree, I have always loathed these places. The thought of me and every other Joe in town going around in our bathing suits, swimming in the same pee-filled water and then going down slides with algae growing on the sides is not my idea of a good time. But in Sandusky, the waterpark is king! They even have indoor water parks, not to mention hotels with water parks inside of them. You're driving by the Wolf Lodge, and all of a sudden there is a huge yellow tube twisting off the side of the building. Let's stay there!

There is also a plethora of haunted houses (which is just odd in August), mini golf courses, and arcades. I will say I'm excited to check out the amusement park (apparently there are 17 roller coasters...you can see the park from across the lake and they are TALL), and I am sure it will make for good blog commentary.

But right now, I am counting down the days until we can get out of town!