Travel Thoughts By Kim

By Kim Pritt, Contributor Posted 21 March 2023 at 8:00 am

In the Hall of Fame room, you’ll find plaques of all the greats inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame over the years. This is the very first set of inductees in 1936: Babe Ruth, Ty Cobb, Honus Wagner, Christy Matthewson, and Walter Johnson.

Let’s go on an adventure together…. to Cooperstown!

The other night I was flipping channels looking for something to watch on TV when I found “A League of Their Own” just starting. I loved that movie and – just guessing here – I’ve likely seen it close to a million times. (only a slight exaggeration) But, I hadn’t watched it in a long time, so I settled in to watch. It didn’t disappoint…..I laughed and cried and was on the edge of my seat watching the final World Series game like I had no idea what the outcome was going to be. And, then, it came to the last scene where they all gathered later in life at the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown, NY and I was right there….remembering my little trip to Cooperstown in the fall of 2013. I decided right then that I would take you all back there with me.

The National Baseball Hall of Fame had been on my bucket list for years. In September of 2013, I finally decided to take an overnight trip to see it. The plan was to get an early start, drive down via Route 20 with some quick photo stops along the way, arrive in Cooperstown around noon to explore and see the Hall Of Fame, do a bit more exploring the next morning, and head back home that afternoon. Well…I love being retired and having the flexibility to change plans on the fly! My estimated 5-6 hour drive (with photo stops) turned into 10 hours because of all the amazing things I took the time to stop and see along the way. I had a reservation at a lovely Bed and Breakfast in downtown Cooperstown that was happy to accommodate me for a second night so I could do everything I wanted to do and not be rushed. So, my overnighter turned into a two night, three day adventure that I’ll never forget.

One of the exhibits is “The Baseball Experience” – a short film that takes you right into the heart of baseball, tugs at your heart strings, and ends with the entire audience singing “Take Me Out to the Ball Game”…don’t miss it!

Taking the scenic route is the best way to go. The thruway would have gotten me there quicker, but I would have missed so much long the way. Some of my stops along the way included: breakfast in Canandaigua, the Montezuma Winery, a couple hours exploring Seneca Falls and the history of Women’s Rights, Skaneateles, Cazenovia Lake, and Chittenango Falls. 

Just about 10 hours and lots of memories later, I arrived in Cooperstown in time to check into my Bed & Breakfast and walk downtown for some dinner. I loved Cooperstown. It is an awesome small town on Otsego Lake with all the small town charm and appeal. Of course, it takes full advantage of the Baseball Hall of Fame with lots of baseball themed shops, restaurants, and attractions, but there is so much to love for everyone – regardless of their interest in baseball. 

After I explored a little and had some dinner, I went to the Baseball Hall of Fame. It was getting late, so I wasn’t sure how much I could see, but I discovered that the purchase of a ticket that late in the day also included access the next day. I spent about an hour and a half that first evening and barely made it through the first floor. The next morning, I returned and spent another three hours going through the second and third floor and revisiting parts of the first floor. It was really amazing! The hall of plaques of those inducted into the Hall of Fame was quite an experience. There were several people wandering through looking at the plaques, but no one spoke more than a whisper – it was a respectful and emotional room. I thoroughly enjoyed all the time I spent there. If you’re going to visit the HoF, you should definitely allow at least 3-4 hours to see it all – more to really do it justice.

Other places I enjoyed visiting while in Cooperstown included Doubleday Field – the birthplace of baseball, Heroes of Baseball Wax Museum, Otsego Lake – I was happy to see a lighthouse, and just spending time wandering around downtown. It was September, so the leaves were turning and the town is so quaint, it just made for such a lovely time. I also visited the Fenimore Art Museum and the Farmer’s Museum – both very interesting – plan for at least a couple hours or more for each.

So, if you’re looking for a 2-3 or so day get away, consider Cooperstown – take the scenic route – you won’t regret it! Check out these blog posts that provide much more info and photos about my Cooperstown adventure:

Taking the Scenic Route  

National Baseball Hall of Fame

Cooperstown Adventure

Happy Adventuring!

The main attraction in Cooperstown is the National Baseball Hall of Fame. Absolutely amazing – a MUST SEE!