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Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

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Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by Goldengirl30 on Tue 28 Feb - 15:44

Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

So, day 3 of the holiday and it was going so fast!  Today was what Paul described as the perfect mans days out - Sport & Beer Laughing

Today's breakfast was taken at Starbucks again, it was convenient and cheap and also tasty!  Our plan for today was to visit the home of the Boston Red Sox Fenway Park, take a tour of the Samuel Adams Brewery and then finish the day at TD Garden to watch the Boston Celtics.

Fenway Park was about a 15 minute walk from the hotel.  First we passed the fire station at the end of the road by the hotel.  As I mentioned the other day, this was the crew who were first on scene at the Boston marathon bombings.  The crowds were so big that they couldn't get the fire truck down to the scene and so just picked up as much of their kit as they could and ran down to the site.  The fire truck also has to be custom made as the streets of Boston are too small for a standard size truck to safely fit.





Right next to the fire station was the old Police building which is now a restaurant.  Next we passed Berklee College of Music which is the largest independent music college in all of the US.  Famous alumni include Quincy Jones and Diana Krall.  



Fenway Park is in the area of Boston known as Fenway.  Years ago the area was basically a giant fen and there are still remnants of that now with some of the geography.  There had been some more snow overnight and so the plows were out clearing the pathways.





I mentioned the other day about the lack of parking in Boston and on game days and concerts held at Fenway, the issue becomes even greater.  So much so, that on game days the local garages stop selling fuel and rent out their forecourts as parking areas.  Apparently the issue is so bad that some drivers just park in designated no parking areas and run the risk of their cars being towed as this is cheaper than paying for some of the designated areas Laughing



When I first floated the idea of a trip to Boston with Paul, one of the major attractions to him was Fenway Park.  He is an avid Liverpool FC fan and the owners of the club also own Fenway Park, home of the Boston Red Sox.  The baseball season wasn't running but the stadium does regular guided tours and this was included in our Go Boston card otherwise was $20 each.  We arrived slightly early so walked the perimeter of the park, taking some photos and then visited the shop where Paul brought yet another t-shirt!











The tour kicked off at 10am and we were with a lovely family from France.  Fenway Park was the first state baseball park in the US and a bit of a shrine to the locals.  It opened in 1912 but the sinking of the Titanic which happened at the same time overshadowed the event.  The most famous players for the Boston Red Sox were Babe Ruth and Ted Williams.  The tour guide was a lovely lady named Cathy and if you were to picture someone you;d least expect to give a tour of a baseball stadium then that is what she looks like but she was excellent and knew everything about the place.  

The Red Sox won the World Series for a good number of years in the early 1900's but then had a drought for over 80 years. The drought was put down to the sale of Babe Ruth.  He was without doubt their best player but also liked the party life associated with a famous ball player.  He asked the owner for a pay rise which the owner refused as he disagreed with Babe's choice of lifestyle and instead sold him to the Red Sox most bitter rivals The Yankees.  The stadium underwent a fairly recent renovation to allow the flow of people through the turnstiles to be more efficient but they have kept the original tickets booths as exhibits in the backlot of the stadium.











We then headed out to the seating area.  Fenway is one of the smallest parks in the Major League Baseball and still retains some of the original 1912 seating.  We sat on these seats and boy are the uncomfortable but if they were to be removed, new planning safety regulations means more aisles would have to be introduced and therefore the already small seating capacity would reduced even more and so they decided to keep them.



Fenway Park is also unique in that it is the only park which still uses a manual scoreboard which is affectionately known as the Green Monster.  They recently build seats above the Green Monster which are some of the most expense seats in the park and are very difficult to obtain.  The view from these seats is amazing.











As we headed around the stadium, the next area was the Fenway Park hall of fame.  Over the years players, benefactors, staff and owners of the club have been remembered with a plaque on the wall.





The giant photo on the wall of the baseball, is a photo of the baseball which earned the Red Sox their first world series win after their 80yr drought.  The ball was caught by a member of staff and when the club asked him to hand it over for their archives, he refused instead donating it to the national Major League Baseball museum in New York.  So the closet thing the club has, is the giant canvas photo of the ball.  They also have tops from each of the years the club won the World Series.





We headed outside again to the areas by the bleachers seating.  This is home to the longest home run ever hit and is documented by a single red seat.  On June 1946, Ted Williams hit what is still the longest recorded home run to this day, 502ft.  A man called Joe Boucher was sitting in what is now the red seat.  He was wearing a straw hat pulled down slightly either shading his eyes from the sunlight or having a snooze.  The ball travelled towards him and hit him on the head knocking him out cold.  However, poor Joe didn't end up with the ball saying that after he got head on the head, he was no longer interested in the game  Very Happy   Even with advances in sporting technology, fitness and nutrition, no-one has come close to beating Ted's record.











The tour finished in a small museum which retold the story of the Red Sox and had some really cool memorabilia.









We both thoroughly enjoyed the tour and you honestly don't need to be a Baseball fan to appreciate the history of the stadium.

Next on our plans for the day, was to get the T to do a tour of the Samuel Adams Brewery.  This was about a 20 minute ride out of Boston and then a short 5 minute walk from the station in an area called Stoney Brook.  We both love Samuel Adams beer and so was a must do for us both.





The tours depart on the hour and we arrived just in time with about 15 minutes to wait.  The tour is free but they ask for a small donation which they divide up amongst local charities.  



There were 6 of us on the tour and everyone was really friendly.  Samuel Adams has 3 breweries in the US and this one is the original but smallest and is where they tend to test the new flavours.  The tour is divided in to 2 halves - first learning about the brewing process and secondly taste testing  Very Happy  So first we learnt abut the different types of hops and malt that they use.  It was fascinating learning about how subtle changes to the roasting process of the malt has such a dramatic impact on flavour and colour.  Next was the scientific bit all about the brewing with the yeast and how adding hops at different stages of fermenting changes the taste of the beer.







Next was the taste testing!  We were each given a small souvenir glass and taken through to a room which is like a small pub with a bar.  We sat round a table and various pitchers of Samuel Adams beer were brought to the table.  We were taught about how to taste the beer properly and how to differentiate between different types of hops and malt.  All the employees were cool, young people which is very different to the real ale movement in the UK which tends to be old men with beards and sandals  Laughing My favourite beer was one flavoured with mango, it was delicious.  As there was no-one behind for us another tour, they let us stay a bit longer and try whatever beer they had on offer  drunken  Very Happy As with all good experiences, we ended up in the gift shop where you've guessed it, Paul brought another t-shirt and I brought a limited edition beer flavoured with cranberries and maple syrup (I've drunk it now and it my goodness, it was delicious!).  It also turned out that all 3 of us couples were attending the basketball game that night, how weird is that!  We had such a good afternoon, learnt a lot, tasted loads of great beer and met some really lovely people.  Again, if you get the opportunity to go, then please do, you won't be disappointed.

By now it was about 2.30pm and we were starving.  We had planned a late lunch, early dinner due to the basketball and opted for the Hard Rock Cafe.  We got the T back towards downtown Boston and easily found the cafe.



I had a BBQ platter with ribs and pulled pork and Paul had a burger and as we were in the beer mood, we washed the food down with another Samuel Adams each.  The food was lovely and filled us up perfectly.





We then headed back to the hotel to have a rest and get ready for the basketball game.  We both love watching the basketball when we are in the US and were lucky enough that the Boston Celtics were playing at home whilst we were there.  I bagged us tickets for $20 each thinking the seats would not be that good for that price but we just wanted to experience the atmosphere.

So we changed in to our previously purchased Celtics T-Shirts and took the T towards the TD Garden and understandably the trains were really busy.  We arrived about 45 mins early so grabbed some crisps and a drink and took our seats.  I was really impressed with the seats, for the price we paid, the view was excellent.





The atmosphere in the stadium was brilliant with entertainment leading up the game.  No kiss-cam appearance for us though  Laughing  The game was excellent and despite at one point us thinking the Celtics were going to loose, they picked up and won the game.  It is such a fantastic evening entertainment and is completely family friendly with no animosity between fans, no bad behaviour and everyone just enjoying themselves.  





It was snowing when we left the stadium and despite it being busy, we made it back to the hotel in about 25 minutes.  Today had been a great day  Very Happy
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by lovetoshop on Tue 28 Feb - 20:54

What a great day, we have done a brewery tour in Denver, it was fascinating. I've never been to baseball game but we did go to a college football game a few years ago and loved th atmosphere, it is lovely to see all the snow on the ground. Thanks for sharing x
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by manxies on Tue 28 Feb - 22:50

Wow you certainly got a lot in to your day, see s really interesting, andy would have enjoyed all of that I think.
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by petetina on Wed 1 Mar - 10:52

wow amazing Smile loving the brewery
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by alysond on Wed 1 Mar - 11:46

Now that's just our sort of day! We love a bit of baseball and that tour looks amazing. We also love a brewery tour too, we`ve done a fair few in our time but this one seems excellent. drunken
One of our favourite programs is The West Wing, and the president Jed Bartlett , is a big Celtics fan too, so we`d have been with you wearing our t shirts. I`m so glad they won, makes it all the more exciting cheers
Thank you so much for these reports, I`m really enjoying them.
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by Luvaduck on Wed 1 Mar - 11:50

Fab, just my sort of day. Who can't love sport and beer? When we eventually go, all these are on the 'to do' list.
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by Debbie4 on Wed 1 Mar - 15:31

wow what a day
Love the Red Socks tour
& The beer tour ( Samuel Adams is lovely ) Very Happy
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by Luvaduck on Wed 1 Mar - 15:41

Debbie4 wrote:wow what a day
Love the Red Socks tour
& The beer tour ( Samuel Adams is lovely ) Very Happy

I agree, I love Sam Adams when over there but there is a minor problem. I saw something on t'internet (so it must be true) and it gave the 10 most calorific beers in production.
Would you believe the Sam Adams Boston Lager was top of the list. Sad
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by Goldengirl30 on Wed 1 Mar - 17:17

Luvaduck wrote:
Debbie4 wrote:wow what a day
Love the Red Socks tour
& The beer tour ( Samuel Adams is lovely ) Very Happy

I agree, I love Sam Adams when over there but there is a minor problem. I saw something on t'internet (so it must be true) and it gave the 10 most calorific beers in production.
Would you believe the Sam Adams Boston Lager was top of the list. Sad


Oh really! I hope not as its a firm favourite of ours. Wish they would export a few more of their beers as well.
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Re: Boston - Day 3 - Wednesday 15th February 2017

Post by ilovesnowwhitej on Thu 2 Mar - 13:14

This sounds like a tony and mine sort of day, Love a tour, what is it with guys and T Shirts lol xx fab day guys
xx
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