[Baseball History] Have you been to Cooperstown?
erniecamacho : June 24, 2008 04:27 PM

I'll be making my first visit in 2 weeks. Dining or sightseeing recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

EC (resident tourist)

Pork Chop Pough : June 25, 2008 09:16 AM

Been there twice, but not in 6-7 years. Franco and I went when we were in college, ~1996, and then I met up with about a dozen internet friends once... maybe 2001... unfortunately, no one bothered to realize ahead of time that 40% of the museum was closed with major renovations.

I assume you already have your accomodations and are aware that it's a really small town in the middle of nowhere. It's small and devoted to baseball to the point that there are no franchises in town. There's a cluster of things about 5 miles south of town... Best Western, McDonald's, Pizza Hut, and a small strip mall that had a nice little breakfast place the last time I was there.

I've only eaten at a couple places in town... and I can't remember the name of either right now. They were both on Main St., close to the Hall. Had brunch at a diner that I'd definitely recommend and dinner at an Italian place across the street (nicer place but still informal). One of the side streets to the south had a Fu Kin Chinese restaurant... didn't eat there, but one of my friends has a picture of the sign. Also, get in town early, parking's a bitch.

There's a tavern that I always heard was good but haven't been there. I can't remember any names now because they're all different baseball references... and I just worked 12+ hours and need to get some sleep, so I'll see if I have time to put some names to things later.

I learned after the first trip that I need 1˝ days there... I can spend a whole day at the museum, but it gets late early around there, and all the baseball shops are worth at least half a day (even if it's just window shopping)... there's one with cases and cases of old equipment that's pretty much a museum itself. At the very least, make sure you check out the signs at the stores... when Franco and I were walking by one, we just happened to notice that Bob Feller was there signing autographs that afternoon.

I think there's a farming museum and a corvette museum or something like that in the area, but neither were of interest to me. Lake Otsego is just a couple blocks north of the Hall, so if the weather is decent you might as well make the walk. Obviously that means there's also some lake related options and there's a big golf course beside it.


Ford Fricks Asterisk : June 25, 2008 06:56 PM

Of course, it goes without saying (and I didn't earlier) that you'll want to take the short walk back to Doubleday Field and see if anything is going on (besides the parking lot there offers probably over half the parking spots in town).

The Italian place must have been Nicoletta's. I'm not entirely sure if the diner was The Doubleday Café or Triple Play Café, but looking at the addresses, it seems it was Doubleday, as it would be across the street from Nicoletta's. Anyway, I'd recommend it for breakfast or lunch.

National Pastime is the store you absolutely don't want to miss. Unfortunately, I couldn't afford most of their merchandise, but in my last trip there I ended up with an old Goldsmith bat (ca. 1930) -- could probably only afford it because it was cracked and nailed at some point -- and a framed print of Rockwell's "The Umpires" that hangs in my livingroom. I'd love to get an old catcher's mask someday.

I think Cooley's Stonehouse Tavern was the place I'd heard of, but haven't been to... supposed to be the best hamburgers in the area.

Another place there but haven't been to, the Fenimore House/Art Museum.


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