Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Truist Park

755 Battery Avenue SE

Atlanta, GA 30339

September 28, 2021

The tale of our visit to Truist Park doesn't begin where you may think - the ballpark. It begins in what we kept referring to as The Muppets Museum. We read that it was the largest Jim Henson collection in the world. We knew we had to be at the ballpark earlier than normal because we had tickets for the guided tour, so we bought tickets to the earliest possible entry time and brought anything we would need for the ballpark because wanted to maximize our time at The Muppets Museum. We would head straight to the park from the museum. 

Truthfully, we were worried that we wouldn't get to see all that the museum had to offer. It gave us great anxiety to think that we would miss a Muppet or two. 

Here's the thing.

It's actually not The Muppets Museum. It turns out that it's really the Center for Puppetry Arts. So, that was awkward. We discovered this when we tried to enter "Muppets Museum" into the Uber destination field. 

Also, it's a very small museum. Even if you're super into puppetry, it would not take you very long to finish seeing everything this museum has to offer. 

Lastly, it was not an entire building dedicated to Jim Henson. We honestly didn't realize that puppets were a thing. We just thought they were all Muppets. 

The Jim Henson exhibit was rather large, so it was not a marketing lie to say that it was "the largest Jim Henson exhibit in the world." However, we read that and assumed that it was an entire museum dedicated to Jim Henson. So...if someone could possibly build that museum, we would be deeply grateful. 

It took us approximately 30 minutes to do the entire museum. 20 of those minutes were spent in the Jim Henson exhibit. Taking photos. Of. Every. single. Muppet. 

Since it was still so early, we returned to our fancy ass hotel and took a nap. 

THEN we headed to the ballpark for the guided tour. The area around Truist Park is called The Battery and is similar to the area surrounding Wrigley or Fenway, only fancier. There are bars and restaurants, shops, a movie theater, a fancy hotel, and luxury apartments. After the tour, we still had some time to kill before the gates opened, so we stopped at The Tavern and had a beer. 

It was the Braves' last homestand before the playoffs and free giveaway night. Plus, they were facing the Phillies, who were also jockeying for playoff position. The lines to get in were long, but nothing compared to what we deal with here in New York for a meaningless game. It went by pretty fast, but having said that, ladies, do not bring your bags to this ballpark!!!! Security would not allow bags larger than 5x9 through security. It could be just for the 2021 season due to COVID regulations, but we're not totally sure. 

We did a full walk around of the main level before deciding to split a steak sandwich from The Carvery (the food options here are more plentiful than at Turner). 

The sandwich is supposedly, "the best darn sandwich in baseball" and cost $23. It consisted of sliced tenderloin on a brioche bun with balsamic glazed arugula, roasted portobello, crunchy fried onion, and creamy bleu cheese sauce. It was served with a side of home made truffle chips. It was delicious, but A LOT of food. If you're planning on chowing down on multiple items at the game, we recommend splitting it like we did. And we're pigs. So, we're experts. 

After stuffing our faces, we headed up to our seats and staged a photo shoot with our Brian McCann bobblehead:

Since it was his special day and this is the south, here is Brian McCann in a monster truck:

This is the closest we got to the team mascot, Blooper:

This ballpark has a lot of stuff going on during the game. For starters, they love fireworks. Every strikeout earns a firework. Possibly a homerun. We can't remember though because this game did take place 4 months ago and we can't remember what we did yesterday.  Could we Google this? Yes. But so can you.

There's also a Home Depot Tool Race. We're not calling it that to be judgmental. They're literal tools. And they called it a Tool Race. Not us. 

The tomahawk isn't as large as it once was, but it still exists and it still does the chop. From what we hear, the Braves will never, ever abandon it because they are not the Washington Football Club. 

Charlie Morton pitched for the Braves and as always, he was a beast, but it was a low scoring game. It did get a bit hairy in the 9th, but they managed to hold off the Phillies with 2-1 victory. We had lovely time booing Bryce Harper. In fact, considering the Braves are not our team of choice, we felt that our boos were the loudest. It's like people outside of New York do not know how to rag on sh*thead players. 

Except maybe Philadelphia fans. This was payback for the ice cube incident!

Before the game was over, we had to get our traditional ice cream in a helmet. Obviously. 

The following morning we returned to New York, so this is all we have to report on Atlanta. See you in March. Possibly.  

Sunday, October 3, 2021

Truist Park Guided Tour

September 28, 2021

Let's start this post off by saying we thought we had quite the heavily stacked schedule on this day. We purchased the earliest possible entrance time to the largest Jim Henson collection in the world. We knew we had to leave this glorious exhibit no later than 1:30 if we were to get to Truist Park in time for our guided tour. Unfortunately, we finished the entire exhibit in 30 minutes. It was awkward because we had not planned for the extra time. So we went back to the hotel to nap instead of going to the World of Coca-Cola because who really gives a giant F about soda? It's not alcohol.

ANYWHO, back to the real purpose of this blog. We picked the last tour of the day prior to game time, so we didn't get to see the broadcast booth or visit the field and dugout, but we aren't totally sure if the tour guide would have hit the field and dugout ANYWAY because the team clubhouse is off limits regardless of game day rules due to an apparent "towel incident" on a prior tour. 

Our tour guide was a lovely, stereotypical southern gentleman type of man. Though he did give us a little ribbing from being New Yorkers and specifically to Lisa for being a Mets fan. Thankfully, his jokes never came across as being "dick-ish" unlike some other ass clowns we've come into contact with. Or else this tour could've gotten really ugly. And possibly criminal. 

We will talk about the area surrounding the park (known as The Battery) in our game post, so if you're interested in reading about that, you'll have to check that out. For now, we will keep this focusing strictly on the actual guided tour. 

When we do guided tours of baseball stadiums, we bump into two kinds of people. The first group of people think we're super interesting for being in the midst of a ballpark bucket list or having completed the aforementioned bucket list. These people ask us a lot of questions about ballparks they've yet to visit and opinions about the ballparks they've also been to. 

Then we get the second type of people. When we went to St. Louis, we had an entire tour group of these individuals. It's the type of people who hate us for this bucket list. We're not sure why, but they never make it a point to hide their animosity towards us. We've yet to meet anyone in this category that's actually completed the bucket list. Usually the fellow bucket list completers are found in the first category of baseball fans - cool people that are excited to meet other people that have done what they've done. The trolls tend to be openly mean and often aggressively challenge our opinions about the ballparks we've visited. On this tour group, we had a couple that fell into this category. At least, we think they're a couple. They may have been brother and sister or colleagues, but who the f*ck knows? They angrily asked what our favorite parks were and seemed offended that we didn't choose Target Field. She, in particular, also seemed offended when we said that Oakland's park was trash, but let's be serious. Even the A's agree that their stadium is trash. That's why they keep trying to leave. Both also rolled their eyes or had snide comments to make whenever we answered one of the guide's baseball trivia questions correctly. 

End rant. 

One of the first spots on this tour is this tomahawk made entirely of Legos, which was built by a young fan. If a grown man had built this, we probably would have spent some time making fun of him, but since a kid did it, we can call it, "impressive." He also apparently did this without any sort of directions, so it's possible that this kid is a borderline genius. Perhaps he will solve the environmental crisis. 

We headed up to the top level of the park where he showed us a few things, including the broadcast booth that we could not visit because it was too close to game time. 

Franchise titles and also Cathy the Cow (she used to hold a tomahawk over at Turner, but now she holds a Chik-Fil-A sign with the kind of spelling that makes Serena twitch in anger):

Retired Numbers (Dale Murphy, Bobby Cox, Chipper Jones, Warren, Spahn, John Smoltz, Greg Maddux, Phil Niekro, Eddie Matthews, Hank Aaron, Tom Glavine, Jackie Robinson):

A huge drum that is, from what we can see, purely ceremonial because we did not see it get used once. Not during the tour and not during the game. From our original position behind home plate, we did think that it was a large coffee cup. We did not figure out that it was a drum until we got next to it, so not sure what that says about us. Either we have a severe coffee addiction or our eyesight is failing us in our old age. Or mayhaps it is both. 

They do have quite a few luxury boxes and as usual with these guided tours, we visited them all. It's becoming pretty tired for us, so we're no longer going to report or share every single club that we're shown. We're only going to share the highlights of these locations. In the case of the Hank Aaron suite, they had two pretty cool features. 

The wall of bats represent each home run Hank Aaron hit, as well as the date and location/team he did it against. The bat is the  one he hit his 715th home run with. It HAS vacationed in Cooperstown, but Hank felt that the bat belonged in Atlanta and here it stays. 

This is a painting of dots:

He said quite a bit about the local artist that created this and the other dot paintings in the area, but we have ADD and we didn't pay attention to any of it. 

This is a suite with some sort with a "wall of fame" type of vibe, but again, we kind of zoned out, so you're lucky you're even getting these pictures. 

Braves Monument Park IS super cool, but not nearly as cool as the original museum that Turner Field had. Also, the tour is a good way to get clean photos of everything because during the game, it gets crowded.

Tom Glavine is the only Brave we can ever truly love. Javy Lopez is hot. Physically. He might actually be a beautiful idiot though. They always are beautiful idiots.

This is weird cafe/homage to Chipper Jones. Who is terrible. That is all you really need to know. 

Here is the view of the field from the fanciest seats in the house:

A Phillies player headed towards the dugout, but he had a sweatshirt on and we weren't close enough to really see who he was. Serena sat up at attention when he started walking towards the dugout because she wanted to flip the middle finger if it was Bryce Harper. It wasn't and apparently the player mistook her Kermit the Frog stare down as a compliment because he waved at us. We begrudgingly waved back.