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Photo TR: New York City and Luna Park


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After years of excitement mixed with anxiety, we finally followed through with a planned trip to New York City. The anxiety stems from our special needs son who can be difficult and uncooperative at times.

 

I tend to be obsessive in planning trips and this one was no different, however my planning was well received by my family. Long before we left our safe abode in North Carolina, I was quite familiar with the New Jersey and New York City mass transit systems. Due to the difficulty and expense of parking in the city we left our car behind and decided to solely utilize public transportation for this trip, something that we would end up regretting.

 

I hope you enjoy my recollection of our trip.

 

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The Delaware Memorial Bridge. We are getting closer.

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The New Jersey Turnpike. Every time we have been on it there is construction. Today was no different.

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Here is the campground (glorified gravel/paved parking lot) in Jersey City, NJ, that we would call home for the next few days.

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Our campsite. At least we weren't packed in like sardines for this trip.

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A night shot of Jersey City from our campsite.

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It is a marina and RV park that also has a megabar on the property. Next time I will certainly check out the megabar but didn't find the time this trip.

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The campground is not far from the Statue of Liberty.

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We could catch a ferry from our campsite to the World Trade Center dock. That's Manhattan in the background.

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If you have a boat you can get fuel here, or so I reckon.

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Our daily walk from the campground to the light rail station on the other side of the building under construction.

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Here's a skyline shot of Jersey City. (I was in a boat and not swimming in the Hudson for this shot)

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Shots of Jersey City. You can still make out damage from Sandy.

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Nighttime shot of the marina with Jersey City in the background.

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We collected a mass of one way tickets for the New Jersey light rail. They were still cheaper than the monthly pass since we only used it for 3 days.

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HBLR (Hudson-Bergen Light Rail) is an acronym we became intimately familiar with on this trip.

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One of the stations we also got to know quite well as we spent plenty of time waiting for the train.

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Yay, the train has arrived.

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These appear to be relatively new trains. The sign lets you know if you are on the right one.

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The signs in the station were helpful in knowing when the train you were looking for was going to arrive.

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Geek humor.

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We went from Marin Boulevard to Hoboken frequently. Cake Boss anyone? We missed Carlo's Bakery this time but plan to hit it next visit.

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My son patiently waiting for the train. Yay! He considered these train rides to be like amusement park rides... at least for the first two days.

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Another familiar site to us, the Hoboken Terminal.

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The PATH subway station that would take us from Hoboken to 33rd Street in Manhattan.

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PATH = Port Authority Trans-Hudson.

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Part 2

 

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The familiar 'waiting for the next subway train.'

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PATH is highly utilized as a way to get from New Jersey to New York City. The crowds made it hard to get a wheelchair on but some people were accommodating.

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One secret to success to a wheelchair in NYC is knowing where the subway elevators are. Despite their strong odor of human urine they were a welcome convenience.

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The iconic and obligatory shot of Macy's.

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We finally made it to our final destination.

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Imagine skyscrapers in NYC.

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Which one is missing? Anyone?

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Dance anyone?

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It seems there is a Starbucks on every corner. Neither one of us would cooperate for this shot at the same time so I picked one where I was cooperating.

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A shot of Manhattan with a fire in Battery Park.

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Anybody's favorite cruise line?

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Lower Manhattan skyline with One World Trade Center.

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The Empire State Building in the background from a Jersey City Pier.

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So back to Manhattan, it was a short 10 block walk from our subway station to Times Square.

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Times Square.

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More Times Square.

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More Times Square.

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The Paramount building.

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The obligatory stop at Toys R Us in Times Square

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Toy Story!

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My son loved watching the ferris wheel.

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It seemed like everywhere you are in upper Manhattan you can see the Empire State Building.

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Here it is.

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and yet again the Empire State Building.

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Just in case you don't know where the Empire State Building is located.

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Part 3

 

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Close up shot of the Empire State Building

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And there it is again...

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Moving on, the NY Public Library is a great place to stop, namely because they have clean, free, public restrooms.

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And phone booths. My daughter is trying to figure out how to pull up the Twitter app on this...

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There are neat paintings

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and great architecture to the library that is interesting to see.

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Behind the library is Bryant Park. Parts of it *almost* block out the city.

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Bryant Park used to be the home of New York fashion week but I heard somewhere it was held elsewhere this year.

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Bryant Park - how did I guess that?

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Too bad I didn't bring any ping pong balls or paddles. Nobody is going to walk off with these tables (or damage them much for that matter).

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Next we headed over to check out Radio City Music Hall.

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Then on to Rockefeller Center.

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There's 'The Rock' for those of you who haven't been to NYC. You can also go to the top of this building for a view of NYC from up high as well as the Empire State Building. We didn't do either this trip.

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Saint Patrick's Cathedral is undergoing restoration...

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...inside and out. That doesn't stop mass from happening, though.

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Next we moved on to Grand Central Terminal.

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I spy... an Apple store.

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We're in Grand Central.

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Underground it looks like any other subway station. From here we would head to Battery Park.

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A museum near Battery Park after we finally made it to the surface.

When we got to Battery Park, we found that the elevator was out of service. This was our first of two experiences where we had to cautiously get my son's wheelchair up an escalator. Most places frown on that but nobody seemed to notice or care in NYC. I guess it's not all that uncommon.

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This religious building reminds me of one of my favorite childhood books, The Little House.

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We came here to ride the free Staten Island Ferry.

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The Battery Park fire obscured what might have been a good shot of Manhattan.

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The Staten Island Ferry Terminal fading away.

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Part 4

 

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Inside the Staten Island Ferry. I didn't expect it to be so large.

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The Brooklyn Bridge.

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Ellis Island - which was closed due to the government shutdown.

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The Statue of Liberty was also closed due to the government shutdown so we'll have to visit it next trip.

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Arrr!

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Upon our return to Battery Park, the fire trucks were leaving after successfully putting out the aforementioned fire.

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Since the elevator was still out of service we just started walking and ended up at the World Trade Center site.

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Construction continues for the World Trade Center complex.

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Close up shot.

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After getting back to our campsite and relaxing for a bit, we headed back to the HBLR that took us to the Newport Mall.

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HBLR drops you off at one of the mall entrances.

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Sunday morning we got up and headed to Coney Island. Of course the express subway was not operating due to tunnel maintenance so we had to transfer at Atlantic Ave to the local subway. This picture was taken to remind me where we needed to transfer back on our return trip.

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After three hours of mass transit we finally completed the short journey from Jersey City to Coney Island.

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Hey, I wonder if there's an amusement park here?

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...and roller coasters?

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Yes, we are here!

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In case you didn't know, this is the original Nathan's.

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Really? I finally figured out this was bumper cars. Lord only knows what it could be in Coney Island.

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My daughter trying to convince me she's under 54 inches. Nice try.

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Soarin' Eagle was down during our visit. My wife reassured me that I could pick up this credit when we returned to get the Thunderbolt credit. Have I ever said how much I love my wife?

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Steeplechase was running.

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Credit. No lines and it was a walk on so we got front row. I was expecting nothing from this and was surprised at how fun and enjoyable it is.

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Luna Park

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A wave swinger.

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Coaster porn

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Part 5

 

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Yep, got this credit

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This looked like a ton of fun but my body doesn't handle rides like this well anymore.

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Credit #209, the iconic Coney Island Cyclone. I've never seen padding like that.

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Artsy shot with no editing.

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Come to find out the coaster needs even more padding that what is there. It was not my most enjoyable experience but I was still happy to get the credit.

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Proof of the credit. As you can see, it's not a busy day at Luna Park.

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My kids loved this ride.

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Here's another shot of this. I'd like to see more of these around as they look good.

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Flat ride porn

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I wonder who makes this ride? Anyone?

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I can't do these either but I wish I could.

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I love log flumes but it was too cold this time.

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I scared the skeleton. I don't blame him a bit...

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The back entrance to Luna Park (or Front depending on how you look at it)

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Another credit. I love mouse type coasters. While none of them top my list, they are all fun to ride and every one I have been on is worthy of another ride.

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My daughter loves these rides. Me not so much. If only they didn't spin.

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We did eat at this Nathan's on the boardwalk. Shh, don't tell my doctor what I had as he wants me to get my cholesterol down.

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I wish I had bought this shirt.

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This looks cool but we didn't try it this trip.

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Coney Island has a nice boardwalk.

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People were enjoying the nice fall day and flying kites.

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You never know what you are going to see on the boardwalk. He's happy, she seemed annoyed to have to walk the boardwalk in heels.

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On our way back to Manhattan getting the whole subway experience of an obnoxious drunk as well as some kids who jumped on to dance for us and collect any money that was offered for their showmanship.

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I never would have thought of that if you didn't demonstrate for me. Now I want to try it to see what happens...

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After a long day, we're all exhausted. Let's call it a successful weekend and head home.

 

Thanks for going through my five part TR. I hope you enjoyed it. Until next time.

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