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Thread: ~Kathie's NYC Broadway Weekend

  1. #1
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    Default ~Kathie's NYC Broadway Weekend

    For the past 2 years the Disney Club {NFFC (NFFC.org) the Club for Disnayana Enthusiasts} I belong to does a Broadway weekend in conjunction with Disney Theatrical. This year there were 26 spaces. If more than 24 (2 spaces reserved for NFFC co-ordinators) people want to go, there is a lottery. Last year there was a lottery and I happened to get picked for 2 tickets. This year, only 24 people applied so we got to go again. This year we would be seeing Mary Poppins and the Little Mermaid on Broadway and have dinner lunch as a group at ESPN. We were on our own as far as hotel and all other meals and activities. I had also bought tickets to Jersey Boys and Phantom. I have always wanted to see Phantom of the Opera on Broadway. It is now the longest running show on Broadway so I thought we shoudl see it before it goes away.


    Thursday
    We drove into the city Thursday morining for the and 9:00am train. The day didn't start off very well because when we got to the city the train station parking lot was full. We ended up parking at a lot where it cost us $80 (compared to $30 at the train station). DH was not happy. We made a note to get an earlier train next time. The train is so relaxing. No worries about traffic or parking in the city. We arrived right on time at 12:30am in Penn station.

    We took a cab to the Hampton Inn (booked through SR) at the corner of 51st and 8th street. Great location and breakfast included. Not far from Broadway and Times Square and one of the theaters we were scheduled to go to was right across the street from the hotel.

    Our room wasn't ready so we checked our luggage with the bellman and went to get lunch. We went the Stage deli for lunch. DH had a sandwich that he could hardly pick up. He said it was about 2 lbs of meat. I never think to take pictures of the food. Sorry. I'll try to remember. After eating all that we walked a few blocks to Central Park and took a horse and buggy ride around the park. They only take you half way through the park but we did get to see a lot. DH didn't bring his camera but we figured we would try to get back there during the weekend.

    We went back to the hotel to rest a bit before the theater at 8. The show Thursday night was Phantom of the Opera. It was ok. I've seen the traveling show 2X in Providence at the Providence Performing Arts. I was disappointed with the actors who played Christine and the Phantom at the Broadway show. When the play first came to RI we had an incredible Phantom and Christine. That show was fantastic. These 2 actors were mediocre. It would have been wonderful to see if with Michael Crawford. Can you imagine? I do love the music and the theater itself was beautiful.
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    Default Friday

    Friday
    Friday we got up early and went down to Pier 16 and went on the waterfall tour. There are 4 waterfalls on bridges in NYC. The city's newest art. This is the official website.........easier than posting pictures. http://www.nycwaterfalls.org/#/about...terfall_Images

    I was able to order free tickets for the boat ride online....I just paid $1.00 handling charge. It was ok......glad the tickets were free. Very short ride, but interesting. They did have a short narrative from the artist about the 'exhibit'. After the boat ride we decided to do the Hop on Hop off Bus Loop tour. We rode and got off at the UN. The next tour of the UN wasn't until 2:30 so we didn't do that, but just looked around in the public area. We got back on the bus and went to Central Park where we visited Strawberry Fields and the John Lennon Memorial. On the way walking back to the hotel we saw the Jonas Brothers bus (never saw the boys) leaving the Trump Hotel. Lots of young screaming girls!!! THAT was very interesting.


    The beginning to Strawberry Fields and the John Lennon Memorial


    The John Lennon Memorial. The middle says IMAGINE. I'll try to find a better close up picture.


    The Dakota Building (with the 2 lanterns) John Lennon and Yoko Ono lived here (she still lives there). He was shot in front of the building.

    Yoko Ono paid for the memorial to be put into the park because people were hanging around the Dakota entrance, leaving flowers and articles. Now people go to the memorial across the street and the residents of the Dakota aren't subject to the crowds etc.

    We had dinner reservations at Sardi's tonight. It was a special I booked online when I bought the tickets for Jersey Boys. $95 for a 3 course dinner for 2. Drinks, taxes and tip to be paid at the restaurant. The food was good, we enjoyed it. When we left the restaurant it was pouring. We got a cab and went back to the hotel which was across the street from the August Wilson theater. Jersey Boys was fantastic. They told the story of the 4 Seasons from each member's perspective. We really enjoyed the show. If you like the 4 Seasons, go see the show.
    Last edited by ~Kathie; 08-25-2008 at 02:25 PM.
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    Default Saturday

    Saturday
    Saturday we got up and had a very light breakfast and met the NFFC contingent at ESPN at 11 for lunch before seeing the Little Mermaid. Our table was downstairs this year with all of us at a big long table. It was much nicer than last year because we could talk to other people. Last year we were in the SkyBox and although it was very private, the tables were all separated. We checked in and the coordinators gave us our tickets and programs from each of the plays. We finished lunch at 12:30 and since the play wasn't until 2 we went back to the hotel to grab my backpack for the programs. I forgot they gave them to us last year. The play was great. The costumes are amazing. We were in the 2nd row which was a bit too close. Would have been better several rows back.

    After the play, they took us upstairs in the theater for the meet and greet. We had about 7 actors there. There was the boy who played Flounder, the guy who played Triton, Jonathan Freeman (voice of Jafar) who plays Grimsby, Prince Eric's manservant; one of the gal's in the ensemble who is the understudy for Ursula, also the cook, Sebastian and the Captain of the ship as well as other members of the ensemble. They were all so nice. They all stayed for quite a while and signed programs for us. I'm waiting for a picture (DH didn't bring his camera ) from another member so will post it when I get it.

    After the play we went back to the hotel to change, and headed to Madame Tussard's. I have never been to one and it was amazing. Look who I met!!!! Too funny!!



    We walked around Bryant Park & Rockefeller Center had dinner at a little pizza place and then headed back to the hotel.

    More later.
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    yeah Kathie

    so glad you are doing a TR of you NYC trip........we hope to head there in the next month of so (I really want to see Wicked)........we may take my cousin for her 40th!!

    Tell us more!!

    Pamela
    Pamela


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    ligrumpygirl is offline Ahhhh...so you only like me for my Moose Munch??
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    I live 40 minutes or so from the city by train and I think you have done more already in your weekend than I ever have in my whole life!! Sounds like I better get to the city soon!
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    Sounds like you had a great and eventful trip. Thank you for sharing. I too am a Phantom fan. I fell in love with it in college and got to see it when it came to Louisville. And like you I would have loved to have seen it with Michael crawford and Sarah Brightmon. Her voice is just amazing. So It was the understudies that performed. I am sorry it was a let down in NYC. But I am glad to hear you had a great trip overall!
    "Be kinder than necessary, because everyone you meet is fighting some kind of battle."

    Michelle

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    Default Sunday

    Sunday we got up early and headed to the Staten Island Ferry after breakfast. What a great ride and free. Perfect view of the Statue of Liberty. We've been to the Statue and Ellis Island before but have never seen the Statue of Liberty from the water. This was perfect. Also and excellent view of the NYC skyline. We saw 3 of the waterfalls from the ferry. Who knew??





    After the ferry ride we went to Ground Zero. It's all covered, no more pictures on the fence that we saw a few years ago. They are doing construction for the memorial so we couldn't see anything.


    This is a bronze memorial dedicated to firemen, policemen and people who helped during the tragedy. It's on a side street. We happened to walk that way....only reason we saw it.



    This building is next door to the World Trade Center Memorial Visitor's Center. It's across the street from where the Towers stood. Note the scarring on the building. We were told that there was a wonderful memorial in the lobby of the American Express building, but we didn't have time to go there. Hopefully next trip.

    We headed back to the hotel and had lunch at a diner across the street. It was fantastic. Cosmic diner. We couldn't believe how many selections they had on the menu. It's a small place but it was packed. The food was great and inexpensive. We made a note to seek this place out when we went back.
    It's on the corner of 52nd and 8th.
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    Default Mary Poppins

    Mary Poppins was at 3pm. I had seen this play last year but it still had the same energy. We had one of the understudies for Mary Poppins, Megan Osterhaus, but had the original Bert, Gavin Lee (he also played in London). We had a meet & greet afterwards and again about 7 actors showed up. Both Mary & Bert, Jane & Michael both the ones who played and the ones who wait in the wings. For this play there are 3 Michaels and 3 Janes. One set of children plays, one set waits in the wings and one set has the day off. So interesting. They all stayed for quite a while and it was nice chatting with them particularly the children.


    This is the first group of actors that came to speak to us. As the time wore on, more actors joined in but they were all over the place so it was hard to get a good picture. They are Gavin Lee (Bert), Megan Osterhaus, a stage hand, The little boy in the front (glasses) was the Michael Banks we had. His name is Neil McCaffery. The other children are the 'in the wings' Jane & Michael.

    Sadly there were no backstage tours for either play......but they did tell us that they are looking in to doing some kind of special tour including tickets to the play, history and tour of the theater and a backstage tour. Sounds like Disney.

    After the play we went to change and headed to Rockefeller Center. We had dinner in the Rockefeller Cafe...which is located where the skating rink is in the winter. We sat right by the fountain.


    The fountain in Rockefeller Center which was right next to our table.



    The view of the trees at street level surrounding the plaza.

    After that we went to the Top of the Rock (top of Rockefeller Tower). The guy on the bus tour on Friday said it was a better view than the Empire State building, cheaper and less crowded. He was right. There are 3 levels that you can climb to. We were there almost 2 hours.


    One of the views from the Top of the Rock.
    Last edited by ~Kathie; 08-25-2008 at 02:31 PM.
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    Default Monday World of Disney & Home


    Here is our NFFC group minus DH who was taking pictures with about 25 camera's.

    Monday morning we went to the WOD store. We were there when it opened. The cast members lined the entryway and clapped and shouted 'Welcome to the NYC World Of Disney' and 'good morning' as all the guests walked through the door. Even Steve was smiling!!! LOL It was pretty impressive.

    We headed back to the hotel, stopped at the diner to get lunch for the train, packed the last minute things and headed to Penn station. We arrived at Penn station a little bit early but immediately got a porter. We learned this tip on our first visit years ago and it has been a godsend. If you get a porter at Penn Station, they take you and your luggage down to the train before the train pulls in, gets you on as soon as it unloads, finds you a seat and loads your luggage before they open the escalator to other passengers. We avoided the crush of people, didn't have to struggle with the luggage and got seats together. Worth the $10 tip.

    It was a great weekend and the weather cooperated for the most part. We did have a bit of rain on both Thursday afternoon and Friday night but it stopped when we had to be out walking. The rest of the weekend was fantastic. We had a wonderful time.

    I would love to go back in November to see the Rockettes and go to the Christmas Festival at Bryant Park. I'm looking around to see what kind of a deal I can get.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mia214jia View Post
    Sounds like you had a great and eventful trip. Thank you for sharing. I too am a Phantom fan. I fell in love with it in college and got to see it when it came to Louisville. And like you I would have loved to have seen it with Michael crawford and Sarah Brightmon. Her voice is just amazing. So It was the understudies that performed. I am sorry it was a let down in NYC. But I am glad to hear you had a great trip overall!
    Michael Crawford and Sarah Brightmon are long gone. There have been other's who have taken the role, the ones we had were the regular actor's. They were okay.......just not as good as I expected. I think my expectations were too high. Every actor gives a bit of their own personality to a role. Christine didn't seem to have enough emotion, the Phantom added too much of his own personality. It was still good.

    I love the original soundtrack.
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