Has anyone here ever visited the Dakota?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by hamishd91, Jul 26, 2009.

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  1. hamishd91

    hamishd91 i am a sweetie Thread Starter

    Obviously because of Lennon.. I may be making a trip to NY next year and am looking to pay my respects here and at Strawberry Fields. Have you gone, and what were your thoughts? Was it purely out of morbid, "oh, so this is it, eh?" curiosity or did you genuinely feel the need to? Also, what are the staff there like? Understanding? Or on the other side of the equator, do you find it unpleasant?

    Would love any recollections of your experiences!
  2. Bill

    Bill Senior Member

    Eastern Shore
    I did. It's a very sobering experience to see exactly where that horrible and truly senseless act occurred. The short walk to the Strawberry Fields portion of Central Park takes some of the sting away, but just a bit. I really didn't interact with any staff- just stood, took it in for a while, and left.
    Glad I did it, though. I felt like I was paying my respects to a fallen old friend (which I was).
  3. Dr.O'Boogie

    Dr.O'Boogie Forum Resident

    I'd love to visit the Dakota. The closest I have got was flying over Central Park shortly after taking off from Newark once years ago.

    One of my most prized posessions is a John Lennon autograph signed at the entrance to the Dakota in 1978, there's even a photograph of him signing it!. I guess it is a bit creepy to think that this is the very place he would be murdered 2 years later.

  4. action pact

    action pact Music Omnivore

    That's awesome!

    I've been by the Dakota a bunch of times. I love that neighborhood.

    I can't imagine how Yoko can stand to live there though, considering what she witnessed at that doorway.
  5. hamishd91

    hamishd91 i am a sweetie Thread Starter

    I like how John's autograph basically says 2huuuuu
  6. Edgard Varese

    Edgard Varese Royale with Cheese

    Te Wai Pounamu
    When I was 18 and on my first trip to NYC (summer 1985) I went to have a look, and ghoulishly had my photo taken in more or less the fateful spot. Kind of dumb, in retrospect.

    I like the photo of me standing in front of Mendips (taken many years later) a lot better.
  7. KeithH

    KeithH Success With Honor...then and now

    Beaver Stadium
    I've never been there and have never considered a special trip. To me, it's creepy to want to see the place where John Lennon was murdered. To each his own, I guess.
  8. mindgames

    mindgames Forum Resident

    I visited New York in March/April this year. I opened a topic before my trip, to learn some more music sightseeing places in New York, like the studios were Lennon recorded. Maybe it's also useful to you: http://www.stevehoffman.tv/forums/showthread.php?t=178488

    I walked a lot in the neighborhood of the Dakota. Sobering to see Cafe La Fortuna was gone, and a few other Lennon related places as well. But unexpected I came across the Beacon Theatre, which I immediately recognized from the Whatever Gets You Thru The Night promo video. ("Mind Games" on the Lennon Legend DVD).

    I made photos of myself at The Dakota, on the same place where same famous photos of John & Yoko were made. Like this two:


    'Eery' maybe isn't the right word for it, but it certainly was 'special' to see almost nothing changed. And also a little depressing.
  9. slinkyfarm

    slinkyfarm Forum Resident

    Winchester, KY
    I went on my first trip to New York. Actually, two of my friends were film majors and tagged along because of the filming there for Rosemary's Baby. My experience was pretty much like Bill's. I had to go and I'm glad I did, but just walking up the block gave me the chills.

    We found Strawberry Fields afterwards, but we didn't think it was all that interesting (though as long as you're there...). We stopped long enough to take a picture, but that was about it.
  10. groff

    groff Forum Resident

    I was at a meeting in the city just a few blocks from the Dakota and, being a Beatles history nut and a big fan, I had to walk over on the lunch break to see the building and the memorial in the park. I just stood at each spot for a few minutes imagining and reminiscing. I felt a little conspicuous but I'm sure the locals, including the Dakota security people, are used to it. I don't think it's ghoulish at all. Think of it as a way of paying your respects.
  11. Adam9

    Adam9 Senior Member

    Toronto, Canada
    I was quite moved and impressed by Strawberry Fields. As for the Dakota, I saw it but had no desire to linger there.
  12. Terry

    Terry Senior Member

    I have been to the Dakota many times, one time telling the doorman that Lauren Bacal was expecting me. He didn't buy it.
  13. fortherecord

    fortherecord Forum Resident

    Rochester, NY
    It's a beautiful gothic building with a lot of history. It's impossible to separate it from the memory of John's being killed there though. I've visited it and just marveled at the thought of how much of John's belongings and Beatle related stuff must be inside of that building. There is a sense of his prescence there.
  14. Clarkophile

    Clarkophile Through the Morning, Through the Night

    I love the dashed off self-portrait.
  15. alexpop

    alexpop Power pop + other bad habits....

    Yeah, once.

    And just across in Central Park JL Strawberry Fields plaque.
  16. jojopuppyfish

    jojopuppyfish Senior Member

    I walked from W 59th st & Center Drive (The southern point of Central Park) through the park and to the Dakota......Looking at the map, I figured it wouldn't take more than 15 minutes to get to the Dakota.....boy was I wrong.
    It took a long time (I think it took an hour)
    When I got to Strawberry Field's memorial, some guy was crying.
  17. stereoptic

    stereoptic Anaglyphic GORT Staff

    Back in the late 70's I would sit on bench with friends in Central Park and look over at the Dakota. One of my friends had done some electrical work in the building, but never saw John or Yoko.
  18. reb

    reb Money Beats Soul

    Long Island
    Two times, both only because I walked thru central park and right across the street the building is directly in front of you.
  19. rburly

    rburly Sitting comfortably with Item 9

    I was in NYC for the NY Marathon in the late 80's and the finish line is just past the Dakota. Being my first time there and so close, I had to go to see where it was. It had been long enough that it wasn't a touristy thing to do, but I just stood for a few minutes, thought about that night and walked away.
  20. Reader

    Reader Senior Member

    e.s.t. tenn.
    I went there once. It was very late at night and pretty quiet. There were only a couple people around and they seemed to be taking care of business. It is a huge, beautiful building. It didn't feel ghoulish at all. It didn't seem real. I felt like I should be quiet and was.
  21. mark f.

    mark f. Forum Resident

    I think you should see it. It puts a different (real?) perspective on the event when you see the place it happened. I don't think its morbid unless you go there and take pictures of yourself - like a lot of people do. When I visit (I've been a few times since the 80s) I can't even think about taking a picture.

    But I don't think its wrong to visit an historical site like that. I went to Dealey Plaza and again it's historical and sobering.

    I was just there a few weeks ago because my daughter wanted to see Stawberry Fields. It surprised me how young the doorman appeared to be.
  22. hamishd91

    hamishd91 i am a sweetie Thread Starter

    I recall a forum member here saying, at least I think it was here, that they were actually there on the 9/12/80 and hung around with the crowd that had gathered. Reportedly his blood was still covering the floor. That's a little too real for me. But I guess the police must have forgotten, hell - the signed copy was still sitting in the grass that night, wasn't it?

    I wonder if they would have had to repave the ground?
  23. mark f.

    mark f. Forum Resident

  24. hangwire13

    hangwire13 Forum Resident

    On my first trip to NYC in 94 my uncle pointed it out as we drove by. When I came back later by myself on foot, I felt no need to go over to the Dakota--I just hung out at Strawberry Fields.
  25. mark f.

    mark f. Forum Resident

    They may have but I don't see why that would be required. They can get the blood up. I do think that maybe the blood was on the site a little longer than some murders but I find it hard to believe that it was just there after the crime scene was cleared away.
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