Showing 1 - 4 of 4 posts found matching keyword: memorial day
After leaving Sandusky, Trey, Leslie, and I headed south to Columbus. With some time to kill before the soccer game would start, we decided to follow a lead provided by our party planner, Brian. We headed directly towards the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, or as Brian described it, "Jack Hanna's zoo." This nickname is a little misleading; as I was disappointed to learn, you won't find Jack Hanna in any of the cages.
It was well over 90° in the midday sun, and most of the animals were smart enough to be lounging in whatever shade they could find. Naturally, our first objective was the polar bear enclosure.
Surprisingly, the polar bear was one of the only animals in the zoo that seemed completely indifferent to the heat. Perhaps that's because they had their own water park, fully stocked with toys and snacks. The other bears at the park, including the sun bear (seen below), had to settle for water misters. Personally, I'd take a swimming pool over a Willy Water Bug any day.
The zoo was full of exotic animals I'd never seen before, but from the pictures I took, you'd think it only had bears. There are red pandas, Asian lions, West Indian manatees, and Komodo dragons, to name just a few. But really, the highlight of the zoo was the great apes, the gibbons, gorillas, and bonobos. Many of the zoo's primates are very human, some making a sincere attempt to communicate with the visitors, while others just pointed and laughed. Generally, I'm no fan of the ape, but I have to say that the Columbus Zoo's apes acted more human than some of the visitors.
Even with every creature great and small napping, the visit was still very much worth the time and expense ($15 per person, plus $7 parking). In hindsight, I wish we had more time to spend.
For the Memorial Day weekend, Trey took Leslie and me to Ohio. Our first stop was Sandusky's Cedar Point amusement park, still the most awesome place on Earth. Trey and Leslie had never been before, and I'm sure they enjoyed themselves as much as I did. For the record, I'm not getting too old for this.
As I did for my last visit to the park in 2010, here's a trip summary in postcard-sized chunks:
The new "ride" in 2012 is "Dinosaurs Alive!", the old riverboat retooled with dinosaur animatronics replacing animal animatronics.
Magnum heads up its lift hill into the clouds.
The Midway as seen from a shady picnic table behind the Dodgem pavilion.
New since last visit: Pink's on the Midway.
A last look at the Millennium Force before nightfall.
Passing by the remains of the Wildcat. The space is being cleared for an outdoor "Luminosity" laser show.
After we left Sandusky, we headed south to Columbus, Trey's real destination. More on that later.
Douglas Adams once wrote an environmental travelogue called Last Chance to See in which he encouraged his readers to take the time to partake of our endangered environment before it was all gone. My mother, brother, and I took him up on his advice this Memorial Day weekend. Only we didn't go look at any stupid animals; we visited the Georgia Music Hall of Fame.
The Georgia Music Hall of Fame was established in Macon, Georgia -- the geographical center of the state and former home of Gregg Allman, Little Richard, and Otis Redding -- in 1996. After years of non-existent crowds and state budget cuts, the museum's doors will be permanently shuttered on June 12 and the exhibits moved to storage in Athens -- spawning ground of the B-52s, R.E.M., and Widespread Panic. We had never been, so mom decided that it was now or never.
The design of the Hall of Fame exhibits is somewhere between audacious and boneheaded. The main exhibit hall is meant to evoke the look of a small town with homes and businesses dedicated to particular genres. However, the individual exhibits lack any noticeable panache or gravitas. It's a lot like looking at a city-wide yard-sale with fancy signs. Or it would be, if there were any people around.
Like the small Georgia town it emulates, it's pretty clear that the museum is a pale reflection of better times. Identifying numbers had fallen off some exhibits. Whole rooms were empty of anything of historical value. In the "Music Factory" children's wing, used flip-flop soles stood in for pipe-organ valves, and the buttons meant to play the sounds of various musical instruments only played the Windows 95 error chord. Sadly, Windows 95 was one of the few things I saw that obviously belonged in a museum!
When the doors are locked for the last time, I'm sure the museum will be missed by more than just its 2 full-time and 6 part-time employees. It's not without its charm or educational value, but it is hard to imagine anyone going out of their way to Macon to see the place. After all, it isn't like it has ever been featured on Oprah.
I'm glad we went, but I won't be spedning any time mourning its passing. That's just another dirge we can do without.
Memorial Day Weekend is over. Back to work. Sigh.