Travels with Bentley

Travels with Bentley
Bentley - our Heartland Bighorn

Monday, August 22, 2016

August 9-10, 2016 - Gotta Getaway RV Park, Bellevue, OH

August 9-10, 2016 - Gotta Getaway RV Park, Bellevue, OH

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

We left Covenant Hills at 9:45am and headed toward Bellevue, OH.  We use an app on our phones called RV Parky to seek out rest stops along the way and when we cannot find a rest stop, I then go to Google Maps to look for a place we can pull off for a short stop.  While looking at Google Maps I noticed what looked like a huge campground and snapped this picture as we drove by the entrance just a short time later.

It is Walden Woods.  I looked this up later and it is a large resort and conference center with 320 campsites.  It seems to be part of an RV "timeshare".  You buy in and then can camp free at any of their campgrounds which seemed to be located as far south as New Mexico, north to South Dakota & Minnesota then quite a few campgrounds on east of these states.  They are affiliated with Resorts of Distinction.  I enjoyed checking out their website and it does look like a beautiful facility.

We also passed through Toledo, OH and crossed the Maumee River.  I snapped this picture of the bridge as we crossed.

Here is a shot of the river and what appears to be some of their downtown district.

We arrived at our campground around 2pm to a cloudy and very humid 86 degrees.  Rain is in the forecast for tonight. Our campground is located about 2 miles east of Bellevue.  The campsites where we parked were set up end to end with the first RV having a pull-thru site, and the one behind getting the back-in. Fortunately the campground was not crowded and we not only had the pull-thru but they were currently parking RV's in every other row providing us with a lot of space.

We had full hook-ups here, decent Wi-Fi and our Verizon signal was good.  There were fewer trees in the area where we parked.  The park has a large swimming pool that lots of folks were enjoying; nice playground equipment and a lot of open area for kids to play.  There was another loop to the west of us that was heavily treed.  Several RV's were parked in this area and it provided even more privacy.
Nice shelterhouse with lots of open ground beyond it.
Loop behind us with more privacy.
The sites to the right are across the road from where we are parked.
Once we had dinner, we decided to drive over to nearby Norwalk to check it out and to see if they had anywhere to get ice cream, and we scored!  H & B's Hop is the place to go here for ice cream.  It is an old-fashioned burger joint with a huge selection of ice cream mixes, flavors, etc.

Afterwards we took a drive through the community.  They have some beautiful homes and churches in this community that made the drive even more enjoyable.  I was able to get a few good pictures as we drove by.  It was a perfect ending to a day of travel.
One of many beautiful old homes.

Two beautiful churches.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

This morning we were up and around to make a drive into nearby (70 miles) Cleveland, OH to visit the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.  It's someplace I've wanted to visit for quite awhile as I love music. Rather than get on the interstate we decided to take a more leisurely drive and headed north until we hit the Lake Erie Coastal Ohio Trail that took us along the shores of Lake Erie for 50-60 miles.  It took us a little over one and half hours but we enjoyed the view and the beautiful homes, parks and piers along the way.

We arrived at the Hall of Fame about 11am.  As we were looking for a place to park I saw the? Ghostbuster's car, being towed by this RV.  Sure wish we knew the story behind it!  Is it the real thing or a replica, if it's the real thing why is it here?  With their being a remake of the original Ghostbuster's movie it makes me wonder.

After we drove around for awhile looking for a place to park, we eventually found the parking garage and we made our way to the Hall of Fame.

Just before we entered the Rock & Roll HOF I snapped a picture of this large ship.  Later I looked up a little information on it.  The ship is the William G. Mather and is now part of the Great Lakes Science Center which is located adjacent to the R&R HOF.  It was built in 1925 and carried iron ore mostly in the Great Lakes area.  It was donated to the Great Lakes Historical Society in 1987.  If we had more time in the area we would have enjoyed visiting the Science Center as well.

You could soon tell the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame is a spot for almost all ages, ranging from young teenagers to many seniors.

Following are pictures I snapped as we moved through the HOF, with comments below each.

Chicago display.  "Saturday in the Park" is my second favorite Chicago song, behind "Color My World".
A small display on Country Music.
There was a large area recognizing Elvis' contribution to Rock and Roll, with a movie.  You could tell he's still the King of Rock and Roll - this area was really packed and as much as I would have liked to spend more time here, it was just too packed to enjoy.
I enjoyed reading these timelines and how they were broken into areas where music shined.
I missed the caption on this one - it is Detroit.
Another area that was packed with people was the section with the Beatles.  I didn't realize I failed to take a picture in that section until reviewing them later.  As with most kids my age, I loved the Beatles, especially when they first entered the music scene here in the US.  Yes, I was sitting in front of the TV the night they appeared on the Ed Sullivan show.
The following pictures was part of my favorite display - showing the various ways we listened to music.  I guess my dad started my love of music.  When I was 4 or 5 my parents bought me a small portable record player for my birthday.  I'm not sure if it was for me or them, because they also bought a few 45's of their own.  My sisters and I played those records (one at a time) over and over. They included "The Twist" "Sealed with a Kiss" and "Limbo Rock" by Chubby Checker, "Lipstick on Your Collar" by Connie Francis, and "The Birds and the Bees".  

Oh how I remember my first transistor radio.  I was so excited when I opened it at Christmas when I was in the 6th grade. Growing up, I lived just outside of town.  I would stand out in the front yard, with the radio to my ear like the picture below, trying to get a signal to listen to WHB in Kansas City and later on for WLS in Chicago.

My dad also introduced us to the 4 track and 8 track tape players.  One of the tapes he had was Johnny Cash's greatest hits.  My sisters and I could sing everyone of those songs without missing a word.

When my sister Cindy and I were first teenagers my grandparents (my dad's parents) bought us a really nice portable record player that allowed us to play more than one 45 at a time, and even 33's. Up until then we did not own any albums.
When cassette tapes appeared we all thought that was so great, no more bulky 8 track tapes to haul around, and not too long afterwards the boom boxes hit the scene.  Dean and I bought a few of those as each of our kids wanted their own, and as the big music lover I am, I thought I needed one for myself.

Of course there were the portable cassette and CD players that were also a part of our household.
How times have changed.  Now we can carry songs on our cellphones or listen to Pandora, Sirius XM, etc. and find almost any song we want to listen to within just a few seconds or so, even those oldies.  
We enjoyed seeing many of the displays but lost interest on a few that featured music we were not fond of, so quickly moved on to other areas.  I especially loved the 1 hour movie clips from American Bandstand - does that date us? Of course like many people near our age, I was glued to Dick Clark's show every Saturday to get a glimpse of some of our favorite artists and watch the dance moves!

One of the things I enjoyed most was their display of the changes in how we have listened to music over the years.  I took several pictures.  There were a lot of people looking at this display so I had to snap pictures the best I could.  I tried hanging back at first thinking, I would have my turn at looking, but that just didn't work very well.

If you decide to visit here I'd check to see if there is a time when it is less busy.  There were very few small children, but it felt like it.  Some people want to look at everything and take the time to read the information provided (me) and others want to hurry through, so it was difficult at times to have an opportunity to read the information or snap a picture except to quickly slip it in.  The displays were very nicely laid out, but the order was difficult to follow at times with so many people in attendance, as sometime we would wind through an area where you might have to backtrack to see the opposite side.  If everyone followed each other it would be a perfect world, but instead it was often chaotic as people criss crossed paths.

Another movie clip we enjoyed were some highlights of the newest inductees.  Our last stop was a large movie theater showing highlights from every inductee ceremony.  We thought it was too loud and we soon determined it was going to take some time to watch all of it. By now it was almost 2:30 and we were getting hungry.  We decided to skip the rest of this movie and head back to the campground.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame is one of those things I enjoyed visiting and I'm glad we went but have no desire to return.  We actually enjoyed the Coastal drive as much, if not more, so all in all we had a great day.

Across the road from the R&RHOF was the Cleveland Browns football stadium.

We drove part of the coastal trail as we headed back and I took a few pictures since I was now on the right side of the vehicle to get some decent ones.

One of the ports we saw along the way.
Not sure what lighthouse this was, but I love them so could not pass it up.
1796 - not long after our nation was born - but 70 years before Oswego, KS became a city - 1867.
One of many city parks along Lake Erie.
Here are a few pictures of homes along Lake Erie.  There were some really beautiful homes, however they were set back further with extensive landscaping that prevented taking a decent picture while driving along.

Since we did not eat lunch, we stopped and had dessert before dinner - at a Dairy Queen.  You can't go wrong choosing Dairy Queen desserts!

As we drove through Norwalk on our return I snapped this picture of the courthouse.  As many of you know my sister is the County Treasurer in Labette County Kansas and I try to include a few courthouses as we come across them in our travels.

We will move on tomorrow to our last stop before reaching our son's house in New York

Sunday, August 21, 2016

August 17-20, 2016 - Grand Island, NY

August 17-20, 2016 - Grand Island, NY

We've managed to do several things and lots of visiting since I last posted.  We've taken grandson Josh to the playground a couple of times.  The grade school just down the street from their house has a large piece of playground equipment that includes several slides, climbing apparatuses, swings and something similar to a teeter-totter except 4 people can get on it and it is low to the ground. There is also a dinosaur bouncer for two.  It's been fairly warm here for this part of the country. Yesterday (20th) it was 89 degrees, ugh!
Teeter Totter - Papa took this from across the playground while he kept an eye on Sarah.  FYI - I was not pretending to ride a bucking horse, but trying to get Josh to wave to Papa for the picture!  Lol!

The guys played golf again while Megan and I have stayed with Josh and Sarah.  I've enjoyed spending time with them and visiting with Megan and her mom.  One afternoon Megan and I ventured out for awhile with Josh and Sarah to visit Bed, Bath & Beyond.  Megan had a gift card that she wanted to use on a few things she needed.  It was a successful trip, as she found what she wanted and the kids both did well.  One afternoon we took Josh to a bounce house where he enjoyed many activities - one being King of the Castle.
Afterwards we enjoyed burgers at Red Robin, followed up by ice cream at Cold Stone Creamery. Both were excellent.

Another outing was to Babies R Us so Nana & Papa could select a present for Sarah.  Megan told us she needed a play pad.  After we selected it and we were checking out Matt and Megan spied Halloween costumes of Micky and Minnie Mouse.  Josh loves watching the Mickey Mouse cartoon shows so they purchased costumes for Josh and Sarah.  Here's Josh modeling his costume.
Pretty cute Mickey Mouse!
We've visited a few eating establishments as well - Duff's Wings in Niagara Falls, (which were VERY good), Pono's in Buffalo, a Greek restaurant that also serves a number of American dishes.  Dean and I were still so full from eating lunch at Duff's we shared a BLT with fries, while most everyone else enjoyed Greek dishes.  Our sandwich was HUGE and delicious - probably the best BLT I've ever had. Megan's parents joined us for dinner at Pono's.  Her dad Mike ordered Lobster Mac & Cheese.  I wish I would have thought to take a picture of the bowl of food they brought him.  It looked like a casserole dish rather than an individual serving.  He definitely needed a take home box and chances are he can enjoy this for at least a couple more meals.

Another stop was Whirlpool State Park which is located downstream from Niagara Falls.  After going over the falls, water enters the Niagara River Gorge where it then heads north entering this large circular area that creates a whirlpool, swirling counter clockwise, then exits into what is known as the Devils' Hole Rapids.  You can take a walkway down to Devil's Hole, but since we had both of the kids and it was so hot we did not stop for the walk down.  We visited the State Park last year but they were in the middle of construction to improve the park and the view of the whirlpool so we weren't able to see too much.  The improvements were very nice and provided a wonderful view along the gorge and rapids to the whirlpool.  Boat rides are available as you will see in the pictures I've included.
Enjoying the view.

The water rushing into the whirlpool area.

The large circular area where water then moves counter clockwise creating the whirlpool.

One of the boats that you can take to see the whirlpool up close.  I think I'll just enjoy the view from above.

A shot of the whirlpool area.

Oswego, KS is home of Diamond Coach where they make buses (people movers) for tour companies, airport transportation, etc. to move folks from one location to another.  I noticed one of the buses in the parking lot had the red diamond logo from our own Diamond Coach.

Notice the diamond shaped logo on the right.  Diamond Coach, Oswego, KS.

One morning Dean and I walked from Matt's to a trail that runs along the Niagara River.  It was a nice 2.5 mile walk.  Although a beautiful cool morning, it was pretty humid.

Friday is Dean's morning for breakfast.  We chose "The Pancake House", one of Matt & Megan's favorite breakfast locations.  I ordered egg nog french toast.  They brought 4 huge slices of toast. I could only eat two of them but I brought the other two home.  The next day I put them in a frying pan and heated them up with a little butter and they were just as good as the day before.  Yumm!  Dean had one of their baked omelets.  They are huge.  I wish I had thought to take a picture of it.

Here are the promised pictures of our newest granddaughter, Sarah Ruth Peine.

Sarah Ruth Peine.

Sarah with big brother Josh.  He loves his little sister!

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

August 8, 2016 - Covenant Hills Camp, Otisville, MI

August 8, 2016 - Covenant Hills Camp, Otisville, MI 

Monday, August 8, 2016 

We have enjoyed our stay in St. Ignace, MI and hope to return someday.  There are still many places we would like to visit so hopefully we have that opportunity in the future.

Roadwork in St. Ignace in the northbound lane had traffic backed up on the Mackinaw Bridge.

The bridge is awesome.

To give you something to compare to how high the bridge is over the lake, see that boat!

One more picture of the bridge.  It was a beautiful day to be crossing.

We left the campground at 10:15am and made the 233 mile trip to Otisville, MI where we stayed for two nights at Covenant Hills Campground.  Covenant Hills is a Lutheran church campground that is open to the public.  While we were there they had groups of high school football players and bands attending camps.  The football practice field was right at the entrance and we saw groups several times.  While we never saw the bands, we did hear them.  It is a large campground and has some very nice facilities to accommodate large groups.

The campground has full hookups, good wi-fi, and a very good Verizon signal.  They are a Passport America campground so that provided us with 50% off for our one night stay.  The campground has gravel roads, with graveled sites.  While there were quite a few RV's on site, they were not too busy, and they had spaced everyone nicely to provide privacy at each location.

Our site.

We've been so busy the past week or so, our laundry had piled up, more than I wanted to try and tackle with our portable washer and spin dryer.  We headed into Otisville where we were told by the camp host was a nice laundry facility.  I have to admit it was one of the nicer laundries we have been to in our travels.  We did 4 large loads that emptied our loose change of about $15.  But it was worth it to know we didn't have to worry about it again for quite awhile.

After several busy days before arriving here in Otisville, we were quite content to just come back to Bentley and rest for the evening.  Thank goodness for those extra breakfast burritos in the freezer - as I was too tired to cook and we didn't even want to get back out for a meal.