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Sports Fan Cultural Outting

Compromise and Making the Most out of Weekend Athletic Pilgrimages

I have confessed my husband’s fishing obsession. If there is water he will fish. But he is also a sports fan. College football and hockey being his two favorites with professional football backsliding in recent years. Three to four times a year, we travel to different cities in our region for their respective spectacles. I am not a sports fan though, I have absorbed enough sports trivia via osmosis to survive a full category on Jeopardy. My husband knows this. He appreciates that I try to play along and I actually know what’s going on in the game (most of the time).

The sporting event dictates the day and location of our trips, but it is probably the least prominent item on the agenda. We plan our trips with two other very important criteria: We will eat somewhere local (no homogenized franchise) and We will see some cool things while we are there.

Last fall we visited Atlanta for the SEC Kick-off game. In Atlanta, we ate lunch in the CNN Center, toured the aquarium then the World of Coke-a-Cola, and had dinner at Max’s Pizzeria. And all before the coin-toss in the Georgia Dome.

On our latest mission, we invaded the Country Music Capital of the World…Nashville. The Nashville Predators National Hockey Teams faced off against the Arizona Coyotes. The game started at 7PM local time giving us a small window for our eat dinner/see cool stuff itinerary. Cool stuff first: We went to The Parthenon!

I haven’t had any opportunities to see the ‘real’ Parthenon in Greece.  I’m sure its spectacular, but the Nashville replica ‘wowed’ this American.

corner athena hercules LandoftheLost Nashville Centennial Park

We didn’t have long to enjoy the interior of the temple. If you are ever planning a trip yourself, keep in mind it closes at 4:30. But we spent a few worthwhile minutes in the precense of the goddess Athena. The exterior is also impressive. It is a very small building that feels monumental.

Centennial Park is a bit like the ‘Land of the Lost’. WWII Aircrafts, 1800’s Locomotive, Gondaler Lake and the Parthenon make odd but friendly neighbors.

Next…Dinner.

The arena is conveniently located on Broadway with tons of restaurants, cool record shops, and some touristy stuff. We exhausted the main drag on our last visit. Neither Hard Rock Cafe nor Jimmy Buffet’s Margarittaville appeal to us. We asked a guy just standing on the street where a good mexican place was. He recommended us to one two blocks away called “Le Rey”. The food was awesome! (and reasonably priced) The restaurant was almost empty when we first arrived; a welcome change to the packed establishments on the main drag. And no blaring country music. It may be impolite, but even in Nashville, I am not a country music fan. I like a few songs but the genre annoys me as a whole. So while the smokey bars and grills with a wailing local looking for his big break may be part of the Nashvegas mystic, I enjoyed the quiet cantina. (Also the husband and I still like talking to each other so we don’t need loud music as an excuse to ignore eachother.)

Game Time.

Lights. Sirens. Zamboni!

preds

Our seats were in a corner on the lower level with a great view of the opposing net. We got to see three goals scored on the visiting Coyotes. Unfortunately, they scored seven at the other end of the ice. The final was 7-4.

We bid Nashville good night and  few hours later we were home in bed. Exhausted but happy.

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