Photo TR for TPR by PGR

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Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby Philrad71 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 12:34 pm

Hey everyone!

It's been a long time since I have done a trip report for TPR. Largely because I am getting older and lazier, but work has been very busy and times have been crazy for the past year and a half.

As some of you might know, my partner Michael was diagnosed with bile duct cancer last summer and spent a horrific six months in various hospitals recovering from the Whipple procedure that they performed in Buffalo to try and remove it. He almost bled out three times before the surgeons were able to bring him back.

It's events like this that can really throw a hefty dose of reality in your face. It really does make you appreciate everything that you have and everything that you can do during a time like that. Not sure what I would have done without family and friends during that mind-altering six months of pure hell.

Long story short, he survived and after an extensive amount of rehab, we were finally able to take our first journey to Florida for a well-deserved vacation!

I thought that I would share our journey with my fine friends at TPR...so let's get right to it!
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So here we are leaving NY and all the snow. Kidding, kidding...this is actually about 20 miles north of....f%cking Atlanta? Can you believe this...it snowed almost all the way to Florida - I kid you not.

We had our "up north" gear on all the way to Fort Myers Beach!
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Yep - snow in Atlanta, Georgia. We were thinking of going to Dollywood or SFOG, but wayyyyyy too cold for that. We settled on the (much warmer) Georgia Aquarium instead.
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When you enter, there are themed sections that branch off in all directions.
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They have Beluga whales in one...
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Penguins in another...
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This one kept going after Michael's shoe...it was hilarious watching it. He wasn't kicking the glass or anything...that penguin just wanted to eat that shoe! Everyone was cracking up watching this little guy try to take one of Michael's toes! lol
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Mmmmm...grape-flavored starfish.
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They had tiny sea horses...
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To big-ass groupers. I'll be seeing (eating) you later, my pretty...om nom nom.
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I guess that I never realized that manta rays were this effing big - holy cow!
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But the real star of the show is the world's largest fish - the gargantuan sized whale shark.
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We were really impressed with this aquarium. The exhibits were educational, large and just beautiful!
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This thing looks like it just crawled out of someone's belly in a Ridley Scott movie.
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So beautiful, but I wouldn't want to step on this guy.
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Michael got to pet a starfish and some other aquatic-like things.
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Medusozoa is a much cooler name for jellyfish.
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It was difficult getting a good pic of the pirahna because all they want to do is swim around fast looking for people, animals and other fish to chomp down to the bone.
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It's not Manta the roller coaster, but it's still pretty awesome.

Part 2 at BGT coming soon...thanks for reading!
Last edited by Philrad71 on Fri Jan 19, 2018 4:24 pm.
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby bert425 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:04 pm

Philrad71 wrote:Hey everyone!

It's been a long time since I have done a trip report for TPR. Largely because I am getting older and lazier,



hey!

I'm six years older than you. . that ain't an excuse :p


(now. . back to reading your actual trip report. . LOL)
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby bert425 » Fri Dec 29, 2017 1:08 pm

yeah, the Georgia Aquarium is awesome. . tho I die a bit inside every time I see that "ATT presents: Dolphin coast"

Did you get a chance to eat there? the food court, tho expensive, is pretty good.

and I love the educational shows they put on there (tho the actual dolphin show, and the 4D film sections are just tourist traps, I think).

My favorite part is the giant wall into the whale shark aquarium. (surprised to not see a pic of you/Michael in front of it.. . ?).

glad you had a good time tho, and can't wait to see the rest of the trip!
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby Philrad71 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:28 am

Thanks Bert - and you're right...my age shouldn't be an excuse to be lazy with my trip reports! ;)

We actually didn't eat or do any of the add-on exhibits. The lady at the AT& T Dolphin Coast (are dolphins now part of the 4G network? :lol: ) was ushering us in and told us that the show started in 5 minutes and when we got to the entrance, they said that we were too late. No biggie though as we were getting pressed for time and needed to hit the road anyway. We did catch the sea lion show, which was very good.

I was equally impressed with the robot security guards that they had wandering around in their parking lot as I was with the aquarium! lol

We did buy the photo package, but I will have to get those all scanned and uploaded...thanks for the reminder as I forgot that we had bought those!
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby ThemeParkJunkie51290 » Sat Dec 30, 2017 1:35 pm

Glad to hear your partner got well! =) And Georgia Aquarium is one of those aquariums I would love to visit someday. Especially for the whale shark! :lover:
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby Philrad71 » Sun Dec 31, 2017 9:54 am

^ Thanks a lot!

Yes, we would highly encourage a visit - it's not cheap as far as aquariums go, but if you can pre-buy from their website or Tickets At Work (Club TPR), you can get some decent deals.

The tank with the whale shark is a walk-through, or they have a moving platform that you can walk on. I believe that they mentioned it being the largest salt water tank in the US (if not the world).

They also talked about how they specifically feed the fish differently and at different times so none of them will eat each other! Whale sharks typically eat plankton and small stuff, but I wanted to think that they had a couple of other shark species in there with the whale sharks, rays and other fish.
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby bert425 » Sun Dec 31, 2017 10:48 am

Philrad71 wrote:^ Thanks a lot!

Yes, we would highly encourage a visit - it's not cheap as far as aquariums go, but if you can pre-buy from their website or Tickets At Work (Club TPR), you can get some decent deals.

The tank with the whale shark is a walk-through, or they have a moving platform that you can walk on. I believe that they mentioned it being the largest salt water tank in the US (if not the world).

They also talked about how they specifically feed the fish differently and at different times so none of them will eat each other! Whale sharks typically eat plankton and small stuff, but I wanted to think that they had a couple of other shark species in there with the whale sharks, rays and other fish.


do they still have 4?

I know one of the Belugas died since I was last there (in 2016), but I think they still have 4 whale sharks in that tank.

I'll likely go back in 2019, since skipping Dragon*con this year to do another trip instead.
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby Philrad71 » Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:21 am

^ I think I recall seeing at least three whale sharks and two Beluga whales, maybe?
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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby Nrthwnd » Sun Dec 31, 2017 8:28 pm

Great TR so far, Phil. I find aquariums so nice and calming to walk through. At least, most of the ones I've been in.
This one looks especially nice. Thanks for taking the time to photograph most (if not all) of it.

And whale sharks are very cool. :)

And, you guys have a ....
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Talk is Cheap :idea: Action is Pricele$$

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Re: Photo TR for TPR by PGR

Postby Philrad71 » Mon Jan 01, 2018 3:29 pm

^ Thanks Bill...Happy New Year!

Hope to get BGT up this week, but work will likely dictate that!
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