One of my soft goals for each NHL season is to see my beloved Columbus Blue Jackets in a new arena. Before this season, in addition to their home arena, I had seen them in Nashville, Detroit, St. Louis (x5), Carolina (Raleigh), Tampa, Florida (Sunrise), and Washington. And for years, my long-time twitter bud (and Dallas Stars fan) Jason and I had been looking to go to a game together, but Jackets/Stars never seemed to work out favorably on the schedule until this year. Game #3 on the season happened to be a Saturday night in Dallas — so, as expected, off I went to NHL Arena #9!
I like to wrap my trips around weekends because as if I want to use more of my precious vacation days than I must, so I flew out to Dallas on a Thursday night. Unfortunately, Jason had to work on Friday, so I was left to my own devices in a new city. I had some things in mind that I wanted to do, so I grabbed an Uber (by myself – a slightly terrifying experience in itself) and headed into the city.
First on my list was the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza. History was always one of my favorite classes in school and I have always had a fascination with John F. Kennedy’s life and assassination, so this was absolutely a must-visit on my trip.
They don’t let you take photos in the museum, but it’s okay — I was way too busy devouring every word and every photo in the main level of the museum. It starts with an introduction to JFK and his career leading up to the visit to Texas. It then switches into the trip to Texas and leads you to the corner where the shot was taken. The actual corner is blocked off in glass, so you can’t get to it. The rest of the museum is about the chaos afterward and the way it changed things, and also mentions the conspiracy theories around it.
(Fun fact: the plane where LBJ was sworn in with Jackie Kennedy at his side, and which transported JFK’s body back to Washington is on display at the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton, Ohio.)
From the Sixth Floor Museum, I trekked over to the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, where I absolutely failed to take many pictures because once again, I was in my wheelhouse (history/science museums) and spent a lot of time reading in the science exhibits.
After I had sufficiently scratched my nerd itch for the day, I met up with a friend for drinks before meeting up with Jason for dinner. Now if there is anyone you should absolutely trust to take you on a culinary tour of their city, it’s Jason. We hit up Haymaker, a relatively new (at the time) place with poutine (multiple varieties!) and craft beer (sign me up!).
Saturday was a mix of things — starting with lunch at a place called Rodeo Goat. We ordered a Mike Rawlings and a Ranch House and split them, and holy crap the Mike Rawlings was good. I’m not going to pretend the words “blackberry compote” didn’t kind of terrify and turn me off, but the burger was absolutely delicious. Somehow the Ranch House didn’t quite tickle my fancy the same way. C’est la vie. We also made a stop at some outdoor place for drinks that I can’t remember the name of, but it was pretty unique. Then we hit up a local brewery that I wasn’t a huge fan of to watch some college football. Then it was off to an Italian place for dinner, and then finally — HOCKEY!
Mind you, this was only game four and neither of us had any idea what our teams would be up to this season at this point (the Jackets were 1-2 going into it), and I’m usually bad luck on the road. My expectations were not high, and neither team played well, but we won!
And then there was one very important stop on the way home for the night before my early Sunday flight…