Site ColumnsBy Michelle
December 17, 2004 - 9:56 PM
Last Saturday was my birthday, so we went to Philadelphia, where my husband and I met while in college at the University of Pennsylvania. Our hotel was at Penn's Landing right on the waterfront; the schooner Gazela is docked here, as are riverboats, historic military vessels and a tall ship that has been turned into a restaurant. Our ostensible reason for being in the city was to see October Project at the Tin Angel, but of course we ate and walked around old haunts while we were there, around South Street and the area between the waterfront and Independence Mall.
Back at our hotel we watched the boats going down the Delaware between Philly and Camden, New Jersey across the river, and in the morning we went to the Independence Seaport Museum at Penn's Landing, which also encompasses admission to the submarine Becuna and the cruiser Olympia. I was almost sorry that we did not have our children with us, as this is a very hands-on and child-friendly museum, with interactive exhibits building ships and practicing with weights and scraps of sail to understand balance, buoyancy and aerodynamics. There's also quite a bit of information on scuba and deep-sea exploration, Jewish immigration (a topic near to my heart), the local dockyards during and after the world wars, and the Navy today. plus a goodly number of paintings and models and some full-size vessels in the upstairs gallery. Philadelphia has been a working port since before the city was officially founded and the information here has a strong emphasis on history, industry and trade rather than on the vessels themselves, but there's still plenty to keep tall ship fans interested.
From Philadelphia we drove home by way of the Brandywine River Museum, built in an old grist mill right on the river and exhibiting mostly American artists of the region including three generations of Wyeths. My favorite of them is N.C. Wyeth, who is probably the least famous except among aficionados of children's book art, and they have many of the original paintings from his King Arthur and Treasure Island editions, plus some from a book on the Wars of the Roses that I had not seen the last time we were in this museum. Every floor has a gorgeous view out over the river and railroad bridge, and there were many Christmas decorations, including an enormous model train display (another thing I was sorry not to be able to show my kids) and one of the Wyeth daughters' doll collection, including some windows painted by Andrew Wyeth as a 12-year-old to decorate her enormous dollhouse. There's also an outdoor local market which at this time of year has wool, quilts, cider and honey. We had lunch in the cafe and went through all the exhibitions, which currently include one on American cartoons (political, New Yorker, Hirschfeld, Peanuts, lots of others) and another on local landscape painting. I recommend the museum to anyone within commuting distance of Delaware and southern Pennsylvania.
Trek BBS Today
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Trek Two Years Ago
These were some of the major news items from December 2002:
- 'Nemesis' Struggles On Opening Day
Star Trek Nemesis opened weakly, with initial estimates placing the first day's takings at less than 8 million dollars, lower than Insurrection's 1998 first-day total of $9,020,000. These numbers pale in comparison to big holiday releases such as Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, which eared almost $30 million on its opening day.
- Mixed Reception For 'Nemesis'
Eleven reviewers gave Nemesis wildly different receptions, with The Miami Herald calling it better than Insurrection while Ain't It Cool News called the film "ugly, bland, non-textured and just boring."
- Nimoy Takes His Final Bow
Leonard Nimoy said that he had played Spock for the last time, announcing that he had decided to retire from acting and directing to concentrate on photography and fill his days with family and art.
More news can be found in the archives.
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Today's Television Listings
Tonight at 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, UPN will rerun the Star Trek: Enterprise episode "Cold Station 12". Here's the official synopsis:
Arik Soong leads his band of Augments to a medical facility where hundreds of genetically enhanced embryos are still stored, intending to retrieve them and bring them to life..