Today we decided to visit two places in Birmingham, Alabama. The first was Rickwood Field. This is proven to be the oldest ball park (baseball) in America and it opened in 1910. Many baseball stars have played here over the years (including Babe Ruth and Shoeless Joe Jackson) and while it is no longer the home of the Birmingham Barons (they moved to a newer, larger stadium some time ago), it is still in use regularly for local leagues, high schools, colleges, charity matches etc. The interesting thing about this park (aside from the fact it is indeed the oldest park) is that the Friends of Rickwood have worked hard to keep this ball park looking as it did in the 1940’s. Where possible the original artifacts are still there, including the wooden flooring in the dug outs and the entrance way etc. I believe they told us that it is the only (or one of very few) that still has real grass. Having never seen a baseball park before this was a really interesting trip for us and Vernon, the man who worked there and patiently answered all our questions, was super helpful and rightly proud of all the work they do here. If you are in the area, this is definitely worth a visit (and im sure a small donation would be much appreciated too!). 😀
The second stop of the day was Sloss Furnaces which is a national historic landmark. Basically, these furnaces are the start of Birmingham!
Pig Iron production began in 1882 and continued for almost 90 years when environmental pressures mounted and it finally closed.
A day trip to Pompeii, was always on the agenda and as we looked for a parking spot, a local stopped and made a space for us outside a restaurant, he asked if we were visiting Pompeii and he said when we return, if we eat at his place and we like the food we get the parking free, if we don’t like the food, we don’t pay anything at all!!
Needless to say the food was absolutely gorgeous, we watched his mum cook our meal in such a small kitchen, it was great and we paid without question.
A long for wished trip to Italy in 2013, we stayed in the mountains in a small village called Seronne, during the time we were there, day trips out were in order, here we visited Herculaneum.