Tom's Tour of the NHL Cities (Part 3)
Part three in the continuing series of places we see on the road starts us off in Dallas. Having lived in west Texas before I have a particular shining for the Lone Star State and Texans in general. There’s always good BBQ to be had out there, but in Texas BBQ means brisket (not pork) as its default setting. That’s completely fine with me. Also always a treat when you head down that way is TexMex cuisine, which tends to have a bit of spicy flair and a more homemade feel to it.
Because the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex is so big, it’s tough to do everything there or even see everything. I do recommend the Dealey Plaza museum if you’re interested in JFK in any way. The aquarium was a fun spot to spend half of my day, but it was PACKED when I went which made it a little harder to enjoy. And I do remember from my days in the WPHL that the Stockyards area in Fort Worth was fun.
Now we head to the heartbeat of the American motor industry, Detroit. While it is true this city has fallen on some hard times, there are interesting places to visit even in the downtown area. First of all, the hotel we stay in is the Westin Book Cadillac. I don’t know how many of you are baseball buffs, but the Book Cadillac was the hotel where Lou Gehrig told his manager Joe McCarthy that he couldn’t go that day – the streak ended in Detroit.
If you do like baseball, part of Tiger Stadium still stands (although you can’t do much more than look at it through the fence). Nearby is a little place called Nemo’s that is cash only and has pretty good burgers. It’s an old-school favorite for the Detroit sports crowd.
There are many casinos in Detroit in various places, and over in a spot called Greektown there are not only casinos but also some nice restaurants and bakeries to visit. Oddly enough, you can get pretty good deep dish in Detroit at a place called PizzaPapalis.
Also not to be missed just down the street is a little Irish pub called the Old Shillelagh. I do have to say that the live music at this place one night really made me pine for Nashville and realize how lucky we are in terms of quality of bands everywhere!
Now we go to Edmonton, and for me it’s pretty neat to be in the arena where pictures of Gretzky, Messier, Fuhr, Coffee and others line the walls, a constant reminder of the dynasty that used to patrol the ice here in the 80s. It’s also one of the few Canadian buildings that has an ATM that will work with my bank card so I go to it all the time.
In downtown Edmonton there’s a good bit of shopping located near the downtown area, but it seems like when we’re up there we rarely go very far because of how cold it tends to get. The usual spot to find many of the broadcast staff would be at the Sherlock Holmes, and I recommend trying the Alberta Angus Beef
Steak Sandwich. It’s on garlic bread with cheese, onion straws,
mayo… and now I’m hungry!
This installment wraps up with the Florida Panthers home area, which is technically in Sunrise, FL and not Miami (though it is a Miami suburb). I’ve never actually been to Miami proper so I can’t give you a scouting report on that. Basically we stay across the street from a mall and near some restaurants, and you’ve got to take a cab or a shuttle to get anywhere.
I’ve HEARD there’s a lot of fun to be had at the beach, some pretty good golf courses, and Miami itself is supposed to be pretty cool. I’ve just never quite made it over to any of those places. You’ll have to check out the tourism websites on this one.
Wishing you and your family a safe and Merry Christmas and a joyous and healthy New Year.