Tag Archives: Road Scholar

Being Here was All the Fun

18 Aug

Bo Wheeler, Joyce Bowen, Lucy Smith, and Jan Green with one of the stars of the Hall of Dinosaurs, New York Museum of Natural History, August 3, 2012

Jillaine Schock takes a break with grandparents Judy and Chuck Riden on the C Train

(Winthrop, Massachusetts, August 18, 2012) Exploring New York with Road Scholars of all ages is a great experience – we hope these pictures hint at how much fun it was. Our destinations were top-notch, from the Statue of Liberty to the United Nations, and even the Museum of Natural History. Each day, we navigated the subways and sidewalks of the City that Never Sleeps like native New Yorkers. We had a blast; there’s no other way to describe it.

Kayla and Kathy Peterson enjoying Times Square

Thanks to Road Scholar and the care with which they arranged our daily schedules, we also learned while we traveled. And not just in the museums. Our guides know the city like the back of their hands and even used that knowledge to design Sunday’s scavenger hunt in Central Park. Plus, they made sure to add experts at the UN to answer questions, and even the waiters at Paesano’s in Little Italy, who were more than willing to help with special orders. Now that’s the way to see New York.

John Moore and Lucy Szrama in the General Assembly at the United Nations

Most of all, we had fun with each other. The kids bonded quickly and shared laughs and stories with each other. Grandparents spent time talking about their travel adventures and plans for more in the future. We each have our own life’s journey. And there’s nothing like the way they all came together on this program.

Douglas Reeves in command of the Central Park Scavenger Hunt, August 5, 2012


A Harbor Full of History

19 Jun

The Hall of Records at Ellis Island, New York Harbor

(New York City, June 18, 2012) We met Molly Goodrich, our New York Road Scholar Program Coordinator, at breakfast, and all eighteen of us took the #1 Train to Battery Park and South Ferry, where we set sail for Liberty Island, home of the Statue of Liberty, and then Ellis Island, where 12 million immigrants first set foot in America from 1892 through 1924. Getting there, as always, was half the fun, including the ferry rides to these tiny but spectacular landmarks in New York Harbor.

Jim & Hannah Parker, Laurida Reesman, and Mary Parker in Battery Park

For the second day in a row, the Parker Family took Manhattan, if not the Bronx and Staten Island. Later, we established a foothold in Brooklyn, but that’s getting ahead of ourselves on the story of a very busy day.

The Statue of Liberty, June 18, 2012

Lady Liberty greeted us with the same arms she held open for so many other travelers, even if she was undergoing renovations and was not the hostess she has been, and will be again. Still, there are few views like her, and if she needs a little respite after 126 years of standing tall in the Hudson River, well, she deserves it. All of us, from youngest to oldest, were in awe of her presence. How many destinations can compare for the American family?

The Parker family enjoying the Statue of Liberty.

From Liberty Island, we took a short hop to Ellis Island, and even more history. The Hall of Records, beautifully restored, is inspiring. Exhibits record the experiences of people from all over the world who came here, and became Americans. It’s a magnificent story, beautifully told.

The day continued with a visit to the September 11 Memorial in lower Manhattan and St. Paul’s Chapel, places selected by the Parkers for their family to see first-hand the events that have shaped our 21st Century so far. It is an experience our reporters did not cover, in respect of the Parkers and so many American families.

Shannon Baker, Emily Parker, and Laurida Reesman on the Brooklyn Bridge

Finally, we ended the day with dinner at Teresa’s Restaurant, a culinary gem in Brooklyn Heights, followed by a well-deserved promenade across the Brooklyn Bridge to Manhattan. Well deserved rest was next on our itinerary for a happy and historic day that taught us many truths about what it means to be a New Yorker.

The Brooklyn Bridge, approaching Manhattan

From the Top

18 Jun

Manhattan from the Empire State Building Observatory

(New York City, June 17, 2012) Jim and Pauline Parker are Road Scholar ambassadors, and decided that, instead of renting a beach house for their family vacation, they’d charter the Signature City New York program for themselves, their three children and spouses, their six grandchildren, and a family friend. After arriving from various places around the country, we met in Manhattan and headed to the Empire State Building for a spectacular view of Manhattan. The world’s most famous island did not disappoint. A nearly cloudless sky greeted us, and we had a great time reconnecting with old views and introducing new ones to the kids.

Jim Parker makes sure we all have tickets for the elevator.

New York is a walking city, and not just for the Parker family. We shared the sidewalks with thousands of people, some tourists like ourselves, others enjoying a hometown early summer evening. Ours included Chinese food, and some final stops for coffee, cake, or, everyone’s favorite: ice cream.

Shannon Baker, Emily Parker, and Leah Baker catch up with each other in Manhattan.

We share stories, like why Jim and Pauline’s son-in-law is named Zeke – their daughter Stephanie introduced him to them as Zeke when she first brought him home from college – and talked about the other Road Scholar programs many of us have taken over the years. And the kids caught up with their cousins as only they can do, enjoying each other at least as much as the city.

You can meet some interesting people in Times Square.

All in all, it was a great way to spend the last Sunday of spring in the greatest city in the world. Tomorrow we’ll ferry to the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, and then on to the Brooklyn Bridge and other landmarks in lower Manhattan. Who said they don’t like Mondays?




The lights of Broadway bid us a fond good night on Father’s Day.