12 August 2005

Heinz Feild and the Heritage Museum

Friday, August the 5th Bill and I had a very full day. We started out with a tour of Heinz field (where the Steeler’s play). The tour took about 90 minutes and was actually really cool. It was pouring rain that day so we didn’t go out and sit in the bleachers and since they had just redone the field, to the tune of $700,000, they didn’t let us out on the field either. However, we did get to tour the locker rooms. We didn’t take any pictures of the visiting team locker rooms, but lets just say…they were less than impressive. It would be incredibly crowded in the visiting locker rooms with all those big guys. It was pretty funny to see the different in accommodations. Not to mention that the Steeler’s get to walk out of their locker room straight onto the field, the visiting team has to walk out and around the stadium practically before they get to enter the field…funny stuff. This is the first year of the tours that the Steeler’s are letting people into their locker room. The Pitt Panther’s still won’t let anyone in theirs; they share Heinz Field with the Steeler’s. During the tour we got to see the press box, the suites, the field (but not walk on it), the Steeler’s locker room, and the cables and tubes over head in the halls that carry the beer…very important for most sport’s fans. The tour ended in the Great Hall, where they have a bunch of Steeler and Panther memorabilia. Bill had a bunch of glassware from the old days with Steeler faces on them, including some of the guys who are now in the Hall of Fame, that he donated to the Steeler organization after the tour, they will be displayed in the Hall of Fans in the Great Hall.

After the tour of Heinz Field we parked at The Strip and walked around looking for Steeler stuff, we didn’t find anything that jumped out at us (other than a Steeler Scrunchy for me from Feinberg’s), so we headed to the John Heinz Regional Heritage Museum. What a cool place. Bill and I spent over 4 hours in this museum. They have two levels covering Western Pennsylvania Sports alone. In this they have an entire hallway dedicated to the Latrobe Football team, on which Bill’s Great Grandfather played. He was one of the very first paid professional football players in history. I can’t begin to put into words how cool this place is (both the museum and Pittsburgh). Everywhere you turn there is something to learn about…it’s incredible. The museum had a really cool section on the history of the city; it was really dark through most of it, so we didn’t take pictures. They split it up so you walk up to a street post that has signs pointing in different directions and marked for the different time periods (i.e.: 1800s, 1900s, etc), and when you walk through the different time periods, it’s like being there, right down to walking on wooden boardwalks just like they would have been. It was really something. They show rooms and what it would have been like to live as a mill worker through the centuries, it shows the rich diversity of culture and how they lived differently. It’s just a really cool place. They have a section on the steel workers and what it was like when the mill’s closed (Bill was there for that) and how life changed after that.

It was just really incredible. We stayed until the guy came on the intercom and told us to get out. After that is was late in the afternoon (early evening) so we just went home and had dinner. Oh, a quick funny story, when we first got to the museum, Bill and I had lunch in their cafĂ©. I ordered the Meatball sandwich and Bill had a cup of chili, when the guy brought us our food he asked who got the meatball, I said it was mine, he looked at Bill, looked at me, looked at Bill and said “ No offense, but I would have guessed it the other way around”. I thought that was kind of funny. What can I say I have a healthy appetite.

Hugs to all~