Trading Places

January 07, 2009|By KEVIN COWHERD

Today we compare various tourist attractions in Nashville with those in Baltimore.

Please. It's not even close.

NASHVILLE

Grand Ole Opry Over-hyped country music mecca responsible for steady rise in hearing damage throughout region.

Country Music Hall of Fame

and Museum Ho-hum repository of guitars, rhinestone outfits, cowboys boots, etc., plus usual photos of Hank Williams, Patsy Cline, blah, blah, blah.

Nashville Zoo Bleak 200 acres populated with freezing, desperate-looking animals.

Parthenon Cheesy art museum is a full-scale replica of original Parthenon in Athens, minus anything interesting inside.

Wild Horse Saloon Tourist-trap bar/restaurant opened with - this is absolutely true - country artist Reba McEntire overseeing a ceremonial stampede of wild cattle past doors.

BALTIMORE

Inner Harbor Charming waterfront shops and restaurants, street performers, harbor cruises, paddle boats for the kiddies ... America the way it should be.

National Aquarium Spirited dolphins with amazing eye-snout coordination and 16,000 sea creatures entertain record-breaking crowds.

Baltimore Zoo Lush (well, sort of), well-maintained (kind of) 65 acres of vibrant, energetic creatures.

Oriole Park

at Camden Yards Best ballpark to house a last-place team.

Max's on Broadway Convivial pub with 72 beers on tap, 300 more in bottles. No cattle stampedes ever.

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