Friday, July 25, 2008

New York City Trip, Day Three

Day three. Saturday, June 7th 2008.

This day was a big day.  We were going to the Belmont Stakes to hopefully see the Triple Crown threat, Big Brown, win the his final race!  The Belmont Stakes are held at Belmont Park in Long Island, which is a 45 minute train ride from downtown Manhattan.  We boarded the train at 10:00 A.M. and finally got through the gates into the park at 11:30 A.M.



There was quite a crowd to see Big Brown race (~80,000- which coincidentally wasn't going to happen until 6:00 P.M.)



We had a full day of drinking, hanging out, and watching horse races ahead of us.

At first we had people saving us seats outside in the sun, but it was too hot to even sit out there for 10 minutes, so the guys found abandoned (broken) benches behind some doors and started dragging them out to the shaded areas of the stadium so we didn't have to endure the sun and heat.

Brian looks very hot.



Ahhh.  Much better (but still freakin' hot).



One cool thing about this place is you can bring in your own food, but you have to buy their alcohol- which is very expensive.  $11 for a 16 oz. beer- ridiculous!

This stadium is pretty neat, but according to my brother, is the most "ghetto" horse track.  They had an area behind the stadium where a lot of people set up tents and watch the races on TV from their own lawn chairs.  The girls called this the giant frat party.



After about 5 hours and 8 beers, Brian and I were looking for restrooms only to find out that they had been shut down due to low water pressure.  This was probably the biggest crowd ever at the Belmont, and the facilities were not able to keep up. This is when we finally got fed up.  They had only put four port-a-potties near the stadium so the lines were unimaginably long.  Your only option if you had to go pee was walking clear out to the parking lot (through the frat party- a ten minute trek), where there were plenty of stalls.  It got so bad inside the stadium that outside the men's restroom was a trash can where men were lining up to relieve themselves.



This was it for me.  I was ready to leave (yes, before the big race).  Our plan was to take the train back into Manhattan and then watch the rest of the races from the comfort of a bar (with working restrooms and cheaper beer).  We ended up making it to an Irish Pub (that I can't recall the name of) in time to watch Big Brown lose the race.  He ended up in last place of course- the first time a Triple Crown threat had ever done so. You can see more Belmont Stakes pictures here.

We then headed home to meet my brother (who had stayed for the whole thing) and got cleaned up so we could go out and try some frozen yogurt at this cool place called Pinkberry (they're only in NY and California and Matt said we had to try them). Sadly, the line was too long and we went to a really great ice cream shop called Emak and Bolio's instead.



We came home and started watching There Will Be Blood, but Matt and I fell asleep (Brian watched the whole thing).  After the big day, it was nice to crash fairly early.

-Brian Anderson was a contributing editor on this story.

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