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Tips for a Cooperstown newbie?

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by Herky_Jerky, Jul 30, 2007.

  1. Herky_Jerky

    Herky_Jerky Member

    I've got a three-day stretch of off days coming up in a couple weeks, and I think I'm going to go to Cooperstown.

    I've never been, but, obviously, have always wanted to.

    I'll be going by myself. I'll head up there on a Sunday, hit the Hall of Fame on a Monday and return home on a Tuesday.

    I'm sure plenty of you have been there before, so any tips or suggestions you guys might have would be much appreciated.

    Thanks ahead of time.
  2. ArnoldBabar

    ArnoldBabar Active Member

    You'll want to spend most of your time in the chronological area, which is sort of the core exhibition.

    And it looks like you have kind of a tight schedule, but if you can, take some time and walk around the town. It's a really cool place, and I'd love to raise my children there.
  3. Tommy_Dreamer

    Tommy_Dreamer Well-Known Member

    I'll speak for that. Cooperstown feels like an old town built around a great stadium. It just has that feel to it, fricking incredible. And the drive there is something to behold also, well, depending on where you're coming from. We were coming down from Rome and then West to Cooperstown if I recollect.
  4. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

    stay on the lake. if you go to the hall and hang a left (just past the hall, on the right, and post office, on the left) there's an affordable place three blocks down the street with an awesome but pretty spendy eatery. rooms aren't all that, but it's on the lake and won't cost you all too much.

    the cooperstown bat company is a must-do as are most of the rest of the shops on the main street. midway through town there's a little shack of a place on the north side that serves a great lunch. the brooklyn dodger hall of fame was closed both times i went or i would have done that as well. (it's located on the way into town about a mile or so out.)

    and remember, all the shit they sell on main street comes at a "suggested price." don't be afraid to dicker with shop owners.

    i only hope you have as much fun as i did ... and remember, the boxing hall of fame only is a short drive from cooperstown. the soccer HOF also is close, but who the fuck wants to stop there?
  5. Herky_Jerky

    Herky_Jerky Member

    Thanks for the tips.

    I'm trying to finagle (sp?) a fourth day off, which would allow me to spend two-plus days in town.
  6. doubledown68

    doubledown68 Active Member

    Like others have said, make sure you leave yourself time to explore the town beyond the Hall and Main Street. Personally, it feels to me like time stopped there in 1950, and I mean that in a good way. Picket fences, stately, tree-lined streets, it's absolutely gorgeous.

    Also, be sure to walk by Doubleday Field. You can even go in and look around. There's also a sweet batting cage next to it, complete with 40 mph curveballs, 50 mph knuckleballs and 65 mph fastballs. Unfortunately, it rained the night before we were there, so only the curveball cage was open. But I owned it. I imagine it's like hitting off Burt Blyleven... if he was a doddering 80-year old.

    No matter what you do, just be sure to savor your stay at baseball heaven.
  7. Claws for Concern

    Claws for Concern Active Member

    I've not been myself, but was semi-planning one so my father and I could make it out there. It hasn't happened yet, but hopefully it will in the near future. When I was doing this planning, a friend who is a huge baseball fan and a multi-time visitor to Cooperstown said to take a few days to see it all and, yes, the town itself is worth exploring.

    Have fun!
  8. Jim Tom Pinch

    Jim Tom Pinch Active Member

    Coincidentally I was just writing a short Cooperstown travel piece. Here's a couple unedited paragraphs on souvenir shopping.

    Outside of the museum itself, its worth taking the short walk up and down Main Street before spending any money. Both sides are dotted with souvenir shops. Don’t buy anything right away. The same T-shirt in one shop could be as much as $5 cheaper two doors down. Some offer little more than overpriced versions of merchandise available in any shopping mall memorabilia shop. But the good ones are worth walking into even with an empty wallet.
    Everything at National Pastime, just up the road at 81 Main Street, is for sale. But most people can’t afford two stadium seats from Philadelphia’s long-since-torn-down Shibe Park ($800), but they’re worth looking at, as are the paintings, toys, old scorecards and newspapers.
    The same fans that complain that the Yankees and Red Sox get too much time devoted to them on ESPN will have similar complaints about the merchandise options in Cooperstown. The proximity and popularity of the Boston and New York teams give them a prominent presence on Cooperstown shelves.
    Skip the overpriced underwhelming wax museum and any other place that offers virtual reality batting cages. The real ones behind Doubleday Field offer not only varying speeds, but curveballs and knuckleballs to swing at as well. Connecting is far more satisfying.
  9. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    Like they said, enjoy the town. Just take everything in. It's truly one of the most historic places in this country, in my opinion. Take a look into the card and memorabilia shops. Things there are pretty overpriced, but you might not find artifacts like they have there in any other place.

    And I suggest stopping somewhere to eat and picking up an Old Slugger -- Cooperstown's brew. It's an ale, and it's not too bad. I don't think you can get that anywhere else.
  10. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    Cooperstown Diner?

    Bless you, Tomas. Bless you.
  11. Tom Petty

    Tom Petty Guest

    A. Man, it's been a few years. Is it about 15-feet wide? ... I only remember the quality food and the cramped quarters.

    B. And no problem. I'm here to make you happy.
  12. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    Yeah, the Cooperstown Diner is about as large as my laptop screen. Never ate there, it's either closed or packed when I'm there. But the Shortstop Inn is always good.

    True story about the soccer HOF: It has a satellite office on Main Street, on the left hand side down near the Baseball HOF. A few years ago, I'm there with my wife and two friends and my buddy walks into the soccer HOF office. "I'm interested in going to the soccer hall of fame," he says to the woman working there. Her face lights up and she starts gushing about the hall.

    "Nah I'm just kidding. Soccer sucks," he says and walks out.
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