Sunday, February 14, 2010

Superbowl - Tickets and Stuff

Saturday was sort of a free day, I had only one thing to accomplish, pick up the tickets. I also wanted to check out the Stubhub venue and decide which of the two parking options we would take advantage of.

We slept in and barely made it to our "Free Continental Breakfast". The breakfast turned out to be fairly decent. There was hot Oatmeal and Cream o' Wheat, dry cereal, fruit, pastries and toast or toasted bagels. I drank 4 glasses of OJ in an attempt to ward off the chest cold that I was sure to get. One thing that the Cuban and Central American influx has helped in Miami is the coffee. You can actually get decent coffee most places. You can also tell you're not in the south anymore because there are no grits for breakfast.

We fired up the GPS and headed off to find Calder Racetrack and pickup our tickets.
I knew about Gulfstream Park, I didn't know about Calder Racetrack I didn't think two horse track would be in such close proximity. I had no idea it was so close to Joe Robbie Stadium, Pro Player Park Pro Player Stadium, Dolpins Stadium, Dolphin Stadium, LandShark Stadium, Sun Life Stadium. We found the track with no problem, finding Stubhub was a little more difficult. There were only a few small signs, we had to ask directions. Stubhub was set up in a back parking lot adjacent to the stables. I imagine it's the parking lot for the horsemen, jockeys trainers and the like.

I was surprised by the size of the setup. It looked like they were expecting thousands of people. There was a very large tent with a bar, buffet line and big screen TVs. There was an even larger outdoor area being set up with tables and chairs. They had a few games set up things like a football passing accuracy thing. The ticket operation was pretty efficient, it took only a few minutes to pick up the tickets and sign a receipt. In the tent they were serving soft drinks, chips, nachos and grilled hot dogs. We ate some.

The Stubhub Parking arrangements for the game were a little complex. You parked at the Calder Race Track, took a tram to the edge of the track property and walked half a mile to the stadium. Something thousands of fans do for every Dolphins game. We were not so sure, She has a bum ankle and knee, so a lot of walking could hamper her enthusiasm.

Since we were out we decided o check out Fort Lauderdale. Heading to Las Olas we wanted to see if we could find quiet place for a mid-afternoon drink.

By the time we got there traffic was horrible, and at the beach parking was impossible.


The Boulevard was very crowded but there didn't seem to be many Who Dats or Colts fans. We decide to pass on Fort Lauderdale. Our alternate plan was a Tiki Tour of the Hollywood board walk.

The tour began at our hotel, out back on the beach O'Malleys is a beach front bar complete with local and other sports memorabilia.

We ordered a drink and a half dozen oysters on the half shell. The drinks were good the oysters weren't. We pushed off.

Next stop Nick's.

Nicks has been a fixture of Hollywood Beach and of our trips there. We usually order a half dozen oysters on the half shell and a Peroni beer.
They have very good raw oysters, and pretty good bar food. In fact Nick's is where we discovered that somehow Peroni and raw oysters were made for each other. At our usual seats at the front raw bar we had a playful conversation with 3 couples dressed in Colts Colors.

Next stop the Walkabout Beach Resort.

One of several small older beachfront motels, the Walkabout Beach Resort is typical and has the obligatory Beach Front Tiki Bar, it is one of two authentic Seminole Indian Tiki Huts on Hollywood Beach. Funny I always thought that the Tiki was a Polynesian thing, of course thatched structures using local materials are common all over the world, even in northern Europe. During peak periods there is live music, usually of the Harry Chapin kind.

Next stop was probably the other authentic Seminole Indian Tiki Hut, the Ripide Ocean Front Beach Hotel
The Riptide is similar to the Walkabout, gems from Hollywood's earliest days, right down to the music at the Tiki Bar.

By the time we finished our drinks the sun was going down, the wind was coming up and the temperature dropping fast. It was getting cool and we weren't dressed for it. We started back, only stopping a Nick's for a quick drink.

We got back and decided to rest and head out a little later for dinner, possibly The Original Taverna Opa or Gerogio's Grille or Billie's Stone Crabs all within a block or two of our hotel. After a short nap we decided to eat in, hamburgers from O'Malley's.

Game Day tomorrow.

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