OK, it’s now basically midsummer and there is still a lot of fun to be had around here! So this week’s picks are a mix of classic American pastimes. I know you want to spend as much time as possible outdoors with family and friends. What haven’t I shared with you up to this point? Three of my favorite spots for entertainment that will not just make new memories but may stir up happy childhood reminiscences as well. These spots are great for repeat visits and for introducing to out-of-town guests.
U.S. MILITARY ACADEMY/WEST POINT
Visitor Control Center
2107 New South Post Road, West Point, NY
Or for football:
Michie Stadium Gate 3
West Point, NY
This venerable institution has a long history going back to the Revolutionary War, becoming the USMA in 1802. For history and military buffs, the campus holds much to embrace including the West Point Museum, West Point Cemetery and Constitution Island, all open to the public. For those seeking natural beauty, the location on the banks of the Hudson River offers stunning views for photography, painting, walking, etc. Everyone enjoys the concerts and theater at Eisenhower Hall, the legendary Cadet Review parade and there is nothing like a good Army football game in the fall. Visitors can also dine and stay at the historic Hotel Thayer.
WHY I LOVE IT:
Because this incredible place that has had so much impact on our past and future is in our back yard and accessible to all. You can immerse yourself in the history of our country and our military history, the gravity of which is not lost on me. Add to that the quintessential American experience with all the pageantry and tradition that college football brings on a fall day in the Hudson Valley.
LIME ROCK PARK
60 White Hollow Road
Do not miss this classic road racing circuit park! Opened in 1957 in the bucolic countryside of Litchfield County, bordering Dutchess County, this historic sports car road race venue has managed to retain its original appeal while meeting the demands of today’s racing standards. This is a true viewing park. There is no grandstand. Here fans have the opportunity to be at the edge of the 1.5-mile course or high on a hill above the course, sit on a picnic table and watch or walk the fields as the cars race by. Races include historic SCCA (Sports Car Club of America) amateur racing for all classes, the IMSA Northeast Grand Prix, the Historic Festival 35 and local club events along with driving and racing instructional programs for individuals.
WHY I LOVE IT:
Because you don’t have to be an auto enthusiast to enjoy a day at this track but spend a day walking the pit and meeting the drivers and crew and you will become one. Old-fashioned fun at its finest and a gorgeous drive to get there. The park celebrates its 60th anniversary this year, completing the Road to 60 Project of new infrastructure improvements which will enhance your already perfect visit.
HUDON VALLEY RENEGADES
1500 Route 9D, Wappingers Falls, NY
Home of the Short Season-A minor league affiliate of the Tampa Bay Rays. Who could not enjoy a good night of hometown baseball? This local attraction is part of the NY-Penn League and every home game is guaranteed to be a mix of true competition and classic entertainment. Most games have a theme or are part of an event. There are lots of between-inning promotions and activities, including the ever-present raccoon mascots Rookie, Rene and Rascal. Their robust schedule and affordable pricing encourages more than one visit a season!
WHY I LOVE IT:
Because the stadium is intimate and friendly; the close proximity to players, mascots and events make the experience about so much more than baseball. Having been there with my own kids, as little as 2 years old, I can attest to my “something for everyone” mantra that is guaranteed with every diversion. Another must-do before the end of this summer!