Today, we started our day off early! We departed from our Washington DC. hotel to head to the ever-so-wonderful Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Once we arrived there, we took a tour of the Hall, and then we all parted ways to different street vendors to get original Philly Cheese-steaks. They were amazing! We then had to depart from Philadelphia to travel to the spectacular New York City. When we got close to the city and saw the skyline, we were all in complete awe.
We thought yesterday morning was early, but today was even worse! We met this morning for the TODAY Show outside of the hotel at 6:15 to walk over to where they were filming. When we got there and were waiting in line to go through security, a woman from the crew of the show came up to our group and told us that they had a very special guest today! We all became extremely excited wondering who it was, and then the woman told us--Donald Trump was going to be there. Although some people may not agree with everything he says, it was a very cool experience to see him in person! His family was very beautiful and seemed friendly. It was super cool to be able to say that we saw the potential president of the United States. After the TODAY Show, we took off towards the subways to head to the Statue of Liberty! Once we arrived to the coast, we took a ferry to Liberty Island to take some pictures of the wonderful statue! We see the statue on TV all the time, so actually being there was surreal. After we took the ferry back to the mainland, we hopped back on the subway and took it over into Chinatown and Little Italy! We only had a small amount of time there though, since we stayed longer at the TODAY Show to see Trump, so we didn’t have an extensive amount of time to look around--but we were all okay with that. We then left to catch a glimpse at the 9/11 memorial: Ground Zero. It was extremely touching and very emotional. We then all went separate ways to go to either Madison Square Garden, the 9/11 Museum, or the NBC Studios. When we all met back up, we got back on the subway to head to the Yankee’s game. After the game, we went to the last big stop on our adventure in New York: the Empire State Building. We thought the Top of the Rock was a good view, but this was completely different. I think the fact that it was night and we were up a little higher changed the feel of it, but it was something that we will never be able to explain or forget. When we left the Empire State Building, we started walking back to the hotel but took a little detour to Grand Central Station. Afterwards, some of us went to Times Square one last time, and the rest of us just went straight back to the hotel.
This morning, we left our hotel--Radio City Apartments--in New York City, and are made our way to Pennsylvania. After our four hour drive, we arrived in Shanksville, Pennsylvania to visit the Flight 93 National Memorial. This was one of the most emotional stops of the trip! From Shanksville, the seniors headed off on a 5 hour trek to the city of Columbus, Ohio where they stopped for the night!
To start our final day of Senior Trip, we drove directly from Columbus, Ohio to Effingham, Illinois. In Effingham, the seniors ate lunch and were ready for the three hour drive to New Haven, Missouri. By 2 P.M., we were greeted by our families as we arrived back home in New Haven!