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Old 02-27-2013, 07:46 PM   #16
Spwhoney
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Quote:
Originally Posted by danaesacto

finally- something we agree on
Didn't take as rude. Hard to believe flowers still there I know. I'm not talking big flowers gardens more like flowers here and there up the hills.
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Old 02-27-2013, 09:14 PM   #17
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Yes, the book I am reading said the prisoners would work in in the gardens and flowers are still there from when the planted. Not a lot but there are lilies ( I think) not native to island.
Well - I guess they would be bulbed plants and the bulbs will likely keep splitting indefinitely. However, I'd say it's a fine line to say if they're the same planting per se.

I generally wouldn't want to keep anything like that for that long. I'd probably tear it up and start over again. The usual recommendation is to pull them out and split the bulbs before they start crowding and getting weak.

Even with the general lack of maintenance over the years, I'd be surprised if many of them are same plants. I heard that some of the roses have been there for over 100 years, but they were planted before it was a federal prison by the military.
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Old 02-28-2013, 09:41 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcla

Well - I guess they would be bulbed plants and the bulbs will likely keep splitting indefinitely. However, I'd say it's a fine line to say if they're the same planting per se.

I generally wouldn't want to keep anything like that for that long. I'd probably tear it up and start over again. The usual recommendation is to pull them out and split the bulbs before they start crowding and getting weak.

Even with the general lack of maintenance over the years, I'd be surprised if many of them are same plants. I heard that some of the roses have been there for over 100 years, but they were planted before it was a federal prison by the military.
I can agree with you. Some could still be there. But they would be more like when the roses turn wild after a long time. I wish I new how to post pictures. Just to show pretty they were.
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Old 02-28-2013, 10:26 PM   #19
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Thank you for all the responses. I guess cool in a creepy way will work.
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Old 03-01-2013, 03:07 AM   #20
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I went to San Fran last September with my family, I'm a recent high school graduate and I found the place to be super cool! Me and my friends and going to San Fran for our 19th birthday extravaganza and it's on our must do list!
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Old 03-01-2013, 08:28 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bcla

It was half a joke and half serious. I can't imagine that they would have had flowers planted by prisoners that survived more than 40 years of neglect. Even a thriving garden would need to be periodically replanted. In fact, the link you provided noted that the flowerbeds required rebuilding a decade ago when the Garden Conservancy took over upkeep of the flower gardens...
Bulbs come back every year without replanting.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bcla

Well - I guess they would be bulbed plants and the bulbs will likely keep splitting indefinitely. However, I'd say it's a fine line to say if they're the same planting per se.

I generally wouldn't want to keep anything like that for that long. I'd probably tear it up and start over again. The usual recommendation is to pull them out and split the bulbs before they start crowding and getting weak.

Even with the general lack of maintenance over the years, I'd be surprised if many of them are same plants. I heard that some of the roses have been there for over 100 years, but they were planted before it was a federal prison by the military.
I'd say, yes, same planting, because you didn't plant them again. If nobody digs in the dirt, they weren't replanted, in my eyes.

To the OP, I grew up in SF, and still visit often, and only ever went once. We had many out of town guests go there while visiting, but we always skipped that part of their trips. I would not go back. It is depressing, in a way I can't even quite put into words. Horrible things happened there. Only Americans would turn that into a sight seeing spot. If I ever go back, it will be for Unthanksgiving, nothing else would ever get back on that island. BUT tens of thousands of people go each year, so clearly lots of people enjoy it.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:50 AM   #22
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We are headed there in July and wondered the same thing about our boys (13). When I discussed with them about going, they didn't really even know what Alcatraz was! So I ended up going on youtube - there were videos there of tours people had been on. We watched a bit of a few and then asked them if they would want to go and do a tour. The response I got was - Nah, looks kinda cool but kinda creepy and kinda boring, can we do something else in San Francisco instead! So glad I checked it out before I spent the money and hours of dragging them if they had not interest in it. I think sometimes as parents we think the "must do's" really aren't that at all! Although I would love to go, I think I will just have to plan a trip back when I don't have the kids -when they are all grown up
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:45 PM   #23
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I think your kids will love it! It's a bit boring for younger kids ( my 6 year old got fed up after a while) but anyone over about 10 should find it interesting. The audio tour really does a good job of bringing it to life.
In fact I recently asked a 15 year old boy what his favorite part of his tour of America was ( we are Australian ) and he said Alcatraz !
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:47 PM   #24
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I think your kids will love it! It's a bit boring for younger kids ( my 6 year old got fed up after a while) but anyone over about 10 should find it interesting. The audio tour really does a good job of bringing it to life.
In fact I recently asked a 15 year old boy what his favorite part of his tour of America was ( we are Australian ) and he said Alcatraz !
I forgot to add my DDs aged 10, 12 and 14 loved it too!
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:50 AM   #25
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Really want to know? Personally I think most kids won't like it. It's an old military prison that was converted into a federal civilian prison.

There are some spectacular views from the island though.

Still - I've been there a few times. Once there was a talk on Al Capone by a park ranger. The guy had a distinct midwest accent - I think Chicago. It was really mesmerizing. Everyone was glued to their seats listening to this guy talk about Capone (who strangely enough was from Brooklyn, but I digress).
I disagree. My kids were 10 and 11 and loved it. In fact, they were intrigued by it. They loved the audio tours, standing in the cells, looking at the bullet holes in the walls and lots more. They knew nothing about Alcatraz or its history before we visited. Alcatraz was on our 'must-do' list of things to do.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:53 AM   #26
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Depends on your kids- do they enjoy history? museums? I took a group of Girl Scouts there last summer- ages 11-15 and they mostly enjoyed it. Most of the girls were very interested- especially if they had ever seen any movie or TV show filmed there- but as there always is- one found it boring (she was the youngest though...) You listen through the headphones on a self guided tour, you can go as quickly or as slowly as you like. The boat ride is fun too. It is uphill walking, so comfy shoes, and windy outside so dress a bit warmer than if you were just in the city. Tickets need to be bought online and weeks in advance- so plan accordingly. They do have a night tour that I am not familiar with- that might be something to think about?
No necessarily. We were there about mid-January '12 and we didn't have to order tickets online or book weeks in advance. We took the mid-morning boat over and just booked and paid at the departure area at the wharf.

I would love to do the night tour and hope to do that next January when we are back in San Francisco.
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Old 04-08-2013, 10:52 AM   #27
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No necessarily. We were there about mid-January '12 and we didn't have to order tickets online or book weeks in advance. We took the mid-morning boat over and just booked and paid at the departure area at the wharf.

I would love to do the night tour and hope to do that next January when we are back in San Francisco.
During the peak summer months it can fully book.
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Old 04-08-2013, 12:47 PM   #28
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We are locals -- my children LOVED it and they are around that age (2 girls). The ferry is great. Be sure to get the audio tour. It is fascinating. My kids have no particular interest in prisons but they loved Alcatraz -- we all had a great time, 3 generations! My younger daughter ended up doing a report on Alcatraz for school, she found it so interesting. My recommedation is to start or end your day with a meal at the Ferry Building, one of my favorite places in SF. From there, you can walk to the pier where the Alcatraz ferries launch. Also, on that part of the Embarcadero is the new Exploratorium, if you will be going after April 17.

https://www.exploratorium.edu/

Another thing, be sure to book your Alcatraz tix through the official vendors --the rest are brokers, and try to do a bunch of add ons.

Have fun! Sorry if this duplicates other posts, I didn't have time to read the whole thread.

http://www.alcatrazcruises.com/websi...-programs.aspx
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Old 04-08-2013, 05:46 PM   #29
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I'm one of those who got peeved when the National Park Service put out a new bid for renewal for the ferry contract. It used to be Blue & Gold Fleet, which still provides sightseeing tours. The current contractor is Hornblower Cruises, which previously only did dinner cruises.

The previous vendor was reliable and affordable. You could book a cruise for less than $15 without the audio tour and under $20 with. The current price is over $30 and I believe the audio tour is required. I've done both, and there was no real difference other than the price.
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Old 04-08-2013, 09:27 PM   #30
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I went on a fieldtrip as a kid & really liked it. My kids Dd16, DS13 & DS11 keep bugging me to take them... were gonnna go in september. If you decide to go make sure you reserve at least a month in advance as they book up pretty fast & stay booked...
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