While You're in Town

In addition to baseball, many of these cities have a ton of fantastic things to do and since you're already visiting, why not make the most of it? Check out what the town has to offer! Below are some of our suggestions based on our travels (cities listed in order of our visit):
 
New York
 
If you're staying in New York City (now keep in mind that New York City is a bustling, happening place with a shit-ton of stuff to do. This list is just a few of our favorite things):
  • Serendipity 3 - Desserts only!!! Trust us, their proper food isn't worth delaying your quality time with their amazing desserts.
  • Junior's - Greatest grilled cheese with bacon sandwich EVER!
  • Jekyll & Hyde's is a themed restaurant that's a ton of fun. The food isn't particularly amazing, but it's good enough and the restaurant itself more than makes up for the lack of pizzazz in its dishes.
  • Central Park - Lots of fun activities here for you to check out. During the winter, you can ice skate on Wolman Rink like John Cusack and Kate Beckinsale in Serendipity. Check out the Central Park Zoo, the variety of playgrounds, countless bronze statues including the famous Alice in Wonderland one that's been featured in movies such as Remember Me, the popular carousel, the Conservatory Garden, the Strawberry Fields Monument (in honor of John Lennon), or hire a rowboat or gondola at the Loeb Boathouse.
  • Across the street from the west side of Central Park is the beautiful Dakota building where John Lennon was shot and killed.
  • The Sex & the City guided tour of New York City - fun stuff for ladies (and a few men) that enjoyed the show.
  • Madame Tussaud's Wax Museum where you can rub up against Eli Manning's, David Wright's, and Derek Jeter's wax figures, which is not at all creepy. Just ask Lisa.
  • The Empire State Building - Of course, how could you visit New York City without checking out the observation deck of the Empire State Building and reenacting the final scene in Sleepless in Seattle or at the very least, spouting random dialogue from the film?
  • Ninja New York - Literally the most epic place to eat in the history of mankind. Three words for you to contemplate: Medieval. Ninja. Castle. Let that sink in and marinate a bit in your mind. Let us know what you think.
  • McSorley's Olde Ale House is New York City's oldest Irish tavern. It was one of last "men's only" pubs left standing, only allowing women to enter starting in 1970 when they were legally forced to do so. There are wishbones hanging from the ceiling above the bar, supposedly hung by men leaving for World War I to be removed on their safe return. The wishbones still hanging are those that had been hung by men who never returned from the war.
  • McGee's Pub & Restaurant is the inspiration for McLaren's on How I Met Your Mother. Don't expect it to look like McLaren's, but there is a ton of How I Met Your Mother photographs hanging everywhere and we're told that on Monday nights, the bar broadcasts the new episode on one of the televisions.
  • 8 Hook & Ladder Firehouse at 14 North Moore Street off West Broadway in the Tribeca area is an active firehouse, but it's also the f*cking HQ from Ghostbusters! YESSSSSSS!
If you're staying on Long Island (why you would choose to do this is beyond our reasoning, but perhaps you have family here or some nonsense like that):
  • Visit the Long Island vineyards. It's not Nappa, but it's a fun, reasonably priced day trip to take with your friends, especially if you've got a designated driver. There are several companies that offer tour packages that include tastings and transportation.
  • The Planting Fields Arboretum in Oyster Bay is a lovely, charming, and relaxing way to spend the day.
  • Oheka Castle, real-life castle and site of the rumored Derek Jeter/Minka Kelly wedding. Also featured in season 10 of Project Runway!
  • Sagamore Hill is the home of former President Teddy Roosevelt (the actual President, not the one who runs in a race every night at Nationals Park), which is pretty bad ass.
  • Honu Kitchen & Cocktails - Fun, chill location for Happy Hour. Dinner is pretty tasty as well, but a bit pricey. The bartender, George, is the shit and always does buy backs. On Saturday nights, at around 11:00, they clear the dinner tables out of the way to make way for a DJ and dance floor. The DJ will play everything from Michael Jackson to Bon Jovi to 50 Cent.
  • The Main Event offers GREAT bar food and has an all-around great vibe. The bar area tends to consist more of an older crowd that's there to enjoy whatever games that are playing and the restaurant part caters to families, so it's not the kind of sports bar to go to if you're looking to bang a hot chick or dude (or both at the same time).
  • Croxley's Ale House - We tend to hang out at the Farmingdale location most frequently since it's the closest one, but when Serena worked in New Hyde Park, she spent most Fridays at the Franklin Square location. You can also check out the ones in Rockville Centre and Smithtown. All are going to offer you 10 cent wings for Monday Night Football and 20 cents on Sundays. You seriously can't beat that. We brought AJ to the one in Farmingdale for one Football Sunday and it's still all he can talk about. Nevermind the fact that he spent the entire day in the city. All he talks about are the honey BBQ wings from Croxley's. In one 2-week vacation, we were asked to bring him to the Farmingdale Croxley's three times and the one in Franklin Square once. It might be a sickness.
  • Kodiak's Restaurant Bar is a sports bar with a billion televisions all broadcasting sporting events! It's what we imagine Heaven looks like. There are so many awesome deals happening at this place during the week that it's impossible for us to report on them. It gets us too excited. Just check out the website and see for yourself.
Philadelphia
  • The Liberty Bell is a lot smaller than we imagined, but it's a landmark and a must-see while you're in town.
  • Jim's Steaks - While in town, we were told by several locals that Jim's is the best place to get a Philly cheesesteak sandwich. We went to the one on South Street and the sandwich definitely lived up to the hype.
We only spent a few hours in Philly during our visit, so we didn't get to see all that the city had to offer. Because of that, we reached out to our local friends for some recommendations and here is what they had to say:
  • Kelly recommended McGillin's Olde Ale House, the city's oldest tavern. She also suggested that you check out the LOVE fountain located in the JFK Plaza.
  • Melissa suggested a variety of things, but first and foremost, she said "everyone seems to want to run up the Rocky Steps and then jump up and down like a fool." The 72 steps that "Rocky" ran up are the steps that lead up to Art Museum. There is also a bronze statue at the base of the steps, which is both tacky and amazing. She also suggested checking out Boathouse Row. She claims that must eats are a Philly cheesesteak sandwich at Tony Luke's and crab fries at Chickie's and Pete's.
Baltimore
  • Pickles is a popular pre and post-game hang out near the ballpark.
  • The gravesite of Edgar Allan Poe is located at Westminster Hall and is a pretty cool site to check out, especially if you're a fan. And if you're not sure who Edgar Allan Poe is, you're an embarrassment to our country's education system.
  • Baltimore's Inner Harbor has so many shops, restaurants, and attractions that it's literally impossible to get bored.
Things we didn't get a chance to do, but wished we had:
  • The National Aquarium
  • The dragon paddle boats in the Inner Harbor looked epic. Unfortunately, on the morning when we went to rent one, it downpoured and the ride was shut down for safety reasons. Fail. We still talk about these boats. One day, Baltimore, we shall return and those dragon boats will be ours for the taking!
  • Babe Ruth Museum
Seattle
  • Space Needle - If you eat dinner at Sky City, the restaurant at the top of the Space Needle, access to the observation deck is included. It's totally worth it. It's a bit posh, but the food was yummy and the restaurant rotated, so you got an amazing view of the city while you ate.
  • The Seattle Aquarium is one of the best aquariums we've ever visited. And we go to a lot of aquariums. We could probably start a brand new blog about aquariums. The Traveling Aquatic A-holes.
  • Pike's Place Market was a lot of fun. It boasts vendors tossing fish around, a farmer's market, huge, gorgeous floral bouquets, and other assorted randomness that we found entertaining.
AJ recommended that you check out the original Starbucks, but the line to get in was ridiculously long and you can pretty much find another Starbucks at every corner. Totally not worth it.

San Francisco
  • Benjarong Thai Cuisine - To date, this small, precious gem on Lombard Street has given us the best Thai food ever to grace our mouths.
  • Fisherman's Wharf - This was just an all-around good time. You can grab a trolley tour here (and while you're in San Francisco, you NEED to do a trolley tour), eat good seafood, catch a glimpse of Alcatraz, hit up the aquarium, and check out Pier 39. Pier 39 is home to barking seals (that you can hear way before you ever see them) and the infamous mini-doughnuts that Lisa keeps talking about. You can buy them at Trish's Mini Donuts.
  • Ghirardelli Square
  • Baker Beach offered us an awesome view of the Golden Gate Bridge while we sunned ourselves.
Things we didn't get a chance to do, but wished we had:
  • There is absolutely nothing we'd recommend in Oakland. In fact, if it wasn't a necessity, we would have bypassed that city entirely and pretended the Oakland A's never existed. When visitng the Bay Area, just stick to San Francisco. It's safer and cleaner there.
Chicago
  • The Navy Pier
  • John Hancock Observatory & The Signature Room - Awesome view of Chicago. We recommend checking out The Signature Room at night for a nightlit view of the city. It's swanky and a little high-priced, but it includes the view, so you don't have to pay an additional admission for the observatory. We hear that the view from the ladies' room is the best.
  • Giordano's Deep Dish Pizza
  • Buckingham Fountain is from the opening credits of the tv show, Love and Marriage.
  • Dick's Last Resort - Hilarious and fun dining experience, but expect the waitstaff to treat you like total shit.
  • Green Mill Cocktail Lounge - cool, hip jazz lounge
  • House of Blues - check out their website for their concert schedule and if there's nothing in town that interests you, have a bite to eat. The pulled pork sandwich was yummy!
  • Second City - Famous improv comedy club that originated in Chicago and produced the likes of Mike Myers, Steve Carrell, and Tina Fey.
  • The original Playboy Mansion is not open for tours or anything like that, but it's still a pretty cool landmark to see live and in person. It's now a 3-family home. *sigh*
Things we didn't get a chance to do, but wished we had:
Boston
  • The Freedom Trail is the easiest way to see all of historic Boston. You can choose to do this with a guided tour or on your own. The painted red path makes it easy to navigate the trail yourself. Back in the day when Serena and Erin were young ducklings attending Emerson College, they did the trail every Sunday for exercise. They lost no weight because they ate the entire way.
  • The Public Gardens is a lovely piece of heaven during the spring and summer months. It's here that you can grab a swan boat ride (again, during the warmer months). Under no circumstances should you feed the squirrels. They are a brazen, overweight bunch in Boston. They will DEMAND that you share their food. Since this will be a losing fight should you choose to enter into it, we simply recommend that you run for your life.
  • Quincy Market is along the Freedom Trail (because of Faneuil Hall) and home to a ton of shops and eateries. More importantly, it is here that Erin and Serena bought their delicious homemade, warm, and gooey cookies to eat on their weekly "exercise" trail. There's a lot of important, historical attractions nearby as well as a second, fake Cheers, but the only really vital piece of Quincy Market is the cookie stand. Find it and you will save your soul.
  • Harvard Square is located in Cambridge and home to you guessed it. Harvard University. But in addition to the snooty, uppity college, Harvard Square also has a ton of shops (including the Harvard Coop, which was founded by Harvard students in 1882 and features four floors of books covering almost any topic you could possibly imagine), restaurants, and bars.
  • We're not going to recommend that you grab at meal at Cheer's because it's an over-priced tourist trap and looks nothing like the show's bar, but the exterior looks like it did on the show and that might be reason enough for you to stop by for a photo opportunity.
Los Angeles
  • The Standard Downtown Rooftop Bar is the coolest place in LA that Erin and Matt introduced us to. They had cool pod chair/beds that were fun to play in, a great view of the city, and Lisa had a dance off with an Australian man who told her, "I like you. You dance like an a-hole like me." Good times.
  • Casita del Campo is an adorable little Mexican place that Erin and Matt took Serena on her first visit out to Los Angeles. Then during her second trip. And finally, again, on her third trip with Lisa for our stadium tour. Yummy, yummy food. Plus, the best (enormous, liquor-laden) margaritas in the history of mankind. To put things into perspective, Lisa's favorite mixed drink is a margarita and she was in love. Serena HATES margaritas (after an intense investigation, we've determined that it's the combined taste of tequila and sugar that she dislikes. She quite adores tequila) and she sucked two of these bad boys down like they were water bottles. They leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside.
  • Disneyland - As if you need an explanation for this.
  • Buttercake Bakery had these amazing cupcakes that made us want to make out with a stranger. That's how delicious they were. Thank god only Matt and Erin were on the premises with us. That could've been disasterous.
  • Lulu's Cafe - Breakfast pasta. Repeat. Breakfast pasta. Go. Feast. Rejoice.
  • Nickel Diner - Home to the bacon doughnut, which sounds disgusting, but surprisingly isn't.
San Diego
Something we didn't get a chance to do, but wished we had:
Minneapolis
  • Prohibition Skybar at the W Minneapolis - Foshay Hotel is a swanky, super cool place to get dressed up, pretend to be classy, and catch a few drinks. AWESOME bathroom. The only downside? Lisa got roofied by a creepy business man here and then proceeded to roofie Serena by mistake.
  • Como Park Zoo & Conservatory is totally worth the bus ride and strange walking directions. It's adorable. It also houses Cafesjian's Carousel, a beautiful historical carousel that was built in 1914. Serena's obsessed with carousels and ferris wheels so Lisa was dragged on it. Pretty sure we were the oldest ones willingly riding it.
Milwaukee
  • Graffito Scratch Italian Cooking - Ryan Braun's restaurant. We're told that he makes frequent appearances, but he made no such appearance while we were there. In the meantime, the waitstaff is too helpful and nice.
  • Miller Brewery - You have to. You just HAVE to. Don't give us crap about how you're not into Miller. It's a moral imperative that you visit this brewery. Not going would be like not visting the Budweiser Brewery in St. Louis. Plus, if we remember correctly, we're pretty sure the tour was free. Keep in mind that we DID get plastered on the tour, so we might NOT be remembering that correctly.
  • Water Street Brewery (Downtown Milwaukee) - GREAT food and yummy beers.
  • Walk on Water Tour - Probably one of the best guided tours of a city that we've ever been on. Your admission price includes an adorable, knowledgeable tour guide, food, and booze. How can you beat that? You simple can't.
Denver
  • Denver Aquarium - This aquarium is small, but has a really fantastic setup...and a bar. Get tispy at the bar and then go peruse the aquarium. So much fun.
  • Dinosaur Resource Center - A learning museum dedicated entirely to dinosaurs. Holy shit, epic, right? YESSSS!
  • Hickory House (Parker) claim to have the best ribs in Colorado. We can't say that we have sampled ribs from every local rib joint in the area, but those ribs were pretty damn amazing.
  • Coors Brewery - See above explanation under Miller Brewery. Again, FREE (confirmed by official website this time).
  • The Wild Animal Sanctuary rescues exotic carnivores such as tigers, lions, pumas, and bears that were once held captive. Many of these animals have terrible histories of abuse before being rescued by the sanctuary. Their stories are heartbreaking. It's a beautiful, calm place to see these rehabilitated animals roaming around. The tigers, in particular, are entertaining to watch.
Things we didn't get a chance to do, but wished we had:
Atlanta
  • Georgia Aquarium is the world's largest aquarium. The aquarium is home to FOUR whale sharks. It's really one of the most amazing sights we've ever seen. They're enormous, stunning, and graceful. The fact that the aquarium can house four of them is a true testament to the size of the place. The sharks alone are worth the trip, but the aquarium offers so much more than that.
Being that we stayed in Tennessee for this trip, we didn't get to take in much of what Atlanta had to offer, but once upon a time, Fred #1 lived in Georgia and Serena spent a lot of time in the area. Plus, she actually went on a family vacation with Mamadukes and Brother to the 1996 Summer Olympics, so trust us when we say that she's had a lot of quality time with the state of Georgia:
Toronto

Before we discuss our favorite places in Toronto, we should preface it by stating that we spent 80% of this trip intoxicated. Thank god we don't live here. Serena would most definitely have been checked into rehab by now.
  • CN Tower - Remember all that cool shit we mentioned about the Seattle Space Needle? Same thing. Only in Canada. There is a little area of the observation deck where you can stand on the glass and look down at the Rogers Centre. Talk about vertigo. The restaurant is called 360 Restaurant.
  • Elephant & Castle Pub (Yonge Street) - We can't remember the last time we had this much fun at a bar. Maybe because we were drunk at 11 am. The pub food was super tasty, we got to play in a British telephone booth (though we confess that we don't think that the bar staff was pleased by this behavior), and they sold jugs of beer called The Boss (like Bruce Springsteen, only the jug does NOT come with Springsteen or any of his music). You get to keep the jug. Or, if you're us, you befriend the alcoholic businessmen sitting at the table next to you and steal their jug after you've helped them to polish it off.
  • Steam Whistle Brewery - We can thank O'Canada for this find. This is a popular pre-game spot for Blue Jays fans and was once a legit steam locomotive repair facility. Plus, there is a mini train that you can ride. Or maybe it's just for kids. We're not exactly sure. We sat on it for pictures.
  • Real Sports Bar & Grill - Houses the largest indoor HDTV in North America and trust us when we say that that f*cker is HUGE! Good food too.
  • Visit the wall of cheese at Loblaws (what used to be the Maple Leaf Gardens)  
O'Canada recommended that you check off the following items on your Toronto To-do List:
  • Hockey Hall of Fame
  • Royal Ontario Museum
  • Yonge/Dundas Square
  • Toronto Island & Harbour Front
  • Shopping on Queen Street West, Yonge Street, Eaton Centre, or Yorkville (for all of you high-end snobs out there)
  • Toronto street meat because "New York's street meat is so much smaller and disappointing." : )
Washington DC
  • The Fairgrounds are a popular outdoor pre and post-game hangout for Nats fans. Live bands, booze, and so much more!
As many of you know if you've read our blog post regarding Nationals Park, we didn't spend much time in the DC area. Having said that, you should probably consider checking out the following places if you're in time for an extended time period:
  • Memorials and monuments. Take your pick. There's a ton. Most notable: Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, The John F. Kennedy Eternal Flame in Arlington National Cemetary, Washington Monument, Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial (warning: could cause overwhelming flooding of emotion), etc.
  • International Spy Museum
  • National Air and Space Museum (part of The Smithsonian)
  • The Smithsonian

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