The Beauty Around Us

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Posts tagged ‘Dining Out’

A Friday Drive

We went for a drive on Friday (January 6th), leaving Warren PA around 9:30 am.  It was a frosty morning, with a dusting of snow covering the ground and clinging to the trees.

Our first stop was at the Big Bend Recreation Area, at the base of Kinzua Dam where it meets the Allegheny River.

We walked from the parking lot the short distance to this pavilion.
The pavilion sits above the Allegheny River and overlooks Kinzua Dam.
Bob and I on the pavilion
Kinzua Dam

Our second stop was at the Zippo/Case Museum & Flagship Store, located in Bradford PA.

Zippo/Case Museum & Flag Store

Going to the Zippo/Case Store was the purpose for our drive.  Bob purchased a Zippo Butane Lighter Insert.  We wandered through the Zippo/Case Museum.

The Zippo Museum “Throne”
Zippo/Case Museum
An American Flag dominates this exhibit.
Zippo/Case Museum
American Flag
The American Flag contains approximately 3,400 red, white and blue lighters.
Zippo/Case Museum
An American heroes tribute
Zippo/Case Museum
“ZAC” is a 7-foot audio/kinectic ball machine.

We spent the majority of our time in the museum watching “ZAC”.

“ZAC”

Our next stops were at Allegany State Park. We entered the park via Interstate Road in Bradford. All of our stops were in the Red House Area of the park.

This snowy scene was near the intersection of ASP Route 2 and Ridge Run Road.
Red House Brook flows under a bridge, located between ASP Route 2 and Camp Allegany Rd.
All the bridges in Allegany State Park are beautiful.
The Thomas L Kelly Covered Bridge crosses over the Red House Brook.
Thomas L Kelly Covered Bridge
Our last stop in Allegany State Park was at the Red House Wetland.

From Allegany State Park we drove to Red Lobster in Lakewood NY, where we ate lunch. We chose from the Dockside Duo menu.  Bob chose Fish & Chips with Mozzarella Cheesesticks.  I chose Parrot Isle Coconut Shrimp with New England Clam Chowder.   Cheddar Bay Biscuits accompanied our meals, as well as Coleslaw.  A slice of Vanilla Bean Cheesecake was our choice for dessert.  We “doggy bagged” enough fish and shrimp for two meals and carried home the cheesecake too.  Neither of have as big an appetite as we used to have.

Lunch and Leaf Peeping at Letchworth State Park

We enjoyed a daycation on Friday, October 7th.  We drove to Wellsville NY (an approximate 2-hour drive) to go to lunch with Cynthia and Larry, Bob’s sister and our brother-in-law.  Wellsville is the approximate halfway point from our house and where they are vacationing at Cayuga Lake NY.  We arrived at our agreed-upon meeting place — the Beef Haus — about 30 minutes before Cynthia and Larry did, which allowed us time to drive by one point of interest — the Pink House.  The Pink House is a pink Victorian mansion nestled on the corner of West State Street and Brooklyn Avenue in Wellsville.

The Pink House

According to a Wellsville Sun article, “Edwin Bradford Hall had this home built in 1866–it was finished in 1868 and has remained in his family ever since. E.B. Hall was a well known, highly successful pharmacist in Wellsville, had eclectic tastes and it is believed this grand residence was modeled after one that Hall took a liking to in Lake Como, Italy. He liked the color pink, had the paint mixed in his pharmacy and it has remained that way for generations.” 

From the Pink House we returned to the Beef Haus and found metered parking in front of the restaurant.  We inserted four quarters in the meter for 2 hours of parking.  We would need to insert a couple more quarters in the meter before our time in Wellsville was over. 

Bob and I went inside the Beef Haus and obtained seating for the four of us.  Cynthia and Larry arrived a few minutes later.  Everyone except me ordered a beef dish.  I ordered a Beef Haus Club with Ham, Bacon, Lettuce, Tomato, American Cheese on Wheat Bread.  Bob ordered a Bleu Bayou Burger (Cajun Spiced, topped with Crumbled Bleu Cheese, Side of Buffalo Ranch dressing).  Both of our meals included chips and a pickle.  Larry ordered French Onion Soup, a salad and Beef on Weck sandwich.  Cynthia ordered Bay and Beef (Hand Carved Beef with Lemon Butter Broiled Scallops) accompanied by a salad and red skin mashed potatoes.  Cynthia and I ordered dessert, Peanut Butter Pie, which we shared with our husbands.  By the way I ate only one quarter of my Beef Haus Club and chips and three bites of the Peanut butter pie.  Since I started taking Trulicity for diabetes, I don’t have the appetite I used to have (which is a good thing). I boxed the leftover club sandwich; Bob finished the pie.  Our lunches were delicious,  and the service was very good.

After an enjoyable lunch, we walked a couple blocks down North Main Street.  We went window shopping, going inside the Wellsville Creative Arts Center.  We admired some of the pottery items, two unique ukuleles and a beautiful but very expensive tile inlaid coffee table ($4,800.00).  

At the end of North Main Street, we crossed over West Fassett Street and checked out the Fassett GreenSpace.   According to an article in the Olean Times Herald, the “Fassett GreenSpace consists of a 74-foot diameter meditation labyrinth, more than 1,500 square feet of raised flower and vegetable gardens. A bronze fountain is in the middle while metal musical instruments are on the side. The public is invited to harvest the garden and play the instruments.

We enjoyed playing the musical instruments.
The sound of the musical instruments is beautiful. Bob played a small clip from an actual song. Do you recognize the song?

We walked back the way we came, on the opposite side of North Main Street.  We parted ways in Wellsville.  Cynthia and Larry headed east to their vacation home at Cayuga Lake.  Bob and I headed north to Mount Morris NY (another 1 hour drive).  

En route Mount Morris we drove through Belmont.  Bob saw a waterfall, as we crossed over the Belmont Bridge.  He pulled off on the other side of the bridge, and we walked to the bridge to check out the waterfall.  We saw the waterfall from the bridge, as well as from underneath the bridge.

Belmont Waterfall
Belmont Waterfall from under the bridge
This storefront was in Mount Morris.

The reason that we drove to Mount Morris was to enter Letchworth State Park from the north and to drive south through the park. 

Letchworth State Park Dam Overlook
Letchworth State Park Wolf Creek Falls

We sat at a picnic table at Wolf Creek and finished my leftover club sandwich from our earlier lunch.

Letchworth State Park Great Bend Overlook
Letchworth State Park Inspiration Point
Bob took this picture of me at
Letchworth State Park Upper Falls
Letchworth State Park Upper Falls
with Train on Railroad
Letchworth State Park Middle Falls

Although it was overcast, we enjoyed looking at the beauty of the fall colors throughout the park.  

It took another 2-hour drive to go home, after leaving the park.   We were gone from home at least 10 hours. It was a very enjoyable day.

Bemus Point’s Fall Fest

We attended Bemus Point’s Fall Fest this afternoon. The Fall Fest began yesterday and continues tomorrow.


We parked along Sunnyside Avenue and walked to the Village Casino, window shopping at vendor booths along the way.

A portion of our walk was along Chautauqua Lake.
The Fall Fest included a classic car cruise-in.
We saw several classic cars being driven in Bemus Point.
We ate lunch outside at the Village Casino.
The Stow-Bemus Point ferry
made several crossings, while we ate lunch.
I ordered Chicken Lips and fries.
Bob ordered a Buffalo Chicken Wrap with potato tots.

Both meals were delicious.

After lunch, we walked from the Village Casino to the Bemus Point Golf Club. We found more vendor booths for window shopping. Several vendor items caught my eye, but no purchases were made.

We enjoy the walk alongside Chautauqua Lake so much.
What a beautiful day for a walk!
Beautiful flowers!
Scarecrows adorn the streets of Bemus Point.
I found a friend …

There was a classic car Cruise-In at the Bemus Point Golf Club. We strolled through the field of parked cars and trucks.

Webbs Ferry

Yesterday we ate breakfast at Wendy’s Cafe in North Warren.  I ordered a  “Small Big Breakfast” (2 eggs scrambled, half portion of home fries, half portion of bacon and toast).  Bob ordered an “Everything Omelet” (ham, sausage, bacon, veggies and cheese with home fries and toast).  Breakfast was delicious and filling.  

After breakfast, we went for a drive to and through Allegany State Park (near Salamanca NY).  Before reaching the park, we stopped at Webbs Ferry. 

Webbs Ferry is located in Pennsylvania in the Allegheny National Forest on the western shoreline of the Allegheny Reservoir.

This map shows the location of Webbs Ferry.

As you might suppose from the topographical map, Webbs Ferry is a boat launch for loading and unloading boats. We didn’t stop at Webbs Ferry to make use of its boat launch. From the parking lot there is a foot trail to a fishing pier. We climbed down two flights of stairs and followed a trail that wound through the woods to the fishing pier. If you prefer not to use stairs, the pier is reachable by walking the foot trail alone.

The Webbs Ferry Fishing Pier is 45-feet long.

The fishing pier is completely out of the water, preventing fishing and exposing needed repairs. The entrance to the fishing pier is blocked with caution tape. A sign indicates that the fishing pier will remain closed until repairs are done and a safety inspection is successfully completed.

The views at the fishing pier, though, made the hike down from the parking lot worthwhile.

View just left of the Webbs Ferry Fishing Pier

Webbs Ferry was our only stop. The drive through Allegany State Park was enjoyable, though, on such a beautiful day.

Breakfast with Sue from Florida

Ten days ago, on the morning of September 3, I met my friend Sue for breakfast at Mama Janes Restaurant.

Sue and I became friends via Facebook.  Our online friendship began in February 2013, when Sue became a fan of my Facebook photography page and my friend on Facebook as well.  We attempted to meet each other in October that year, when Sue came to Warren to visit her family.  That meeting did not happen.  Five years later, in June 2018, we finally did meet each other in person. We met at Tim Hortons. Bob met Sue then, too, and we both met Sue’s husband Matt.  

Since 2018 we have met up three other times — in November 2019 again at Tim Hortons, in November 2020 at Bob Evans Restaurant and 10 days ago at Mama Janes.

We didn’t remember to get a picture at any of our meet ups, until today.

Sue and I at Mama Janes Restaurant

I am looking forward to the next time we are able to get together. Until then, we will keep in touch via Facebook.

Virginia and North Carolina Vacation: Day 9 – Maggie Valley NC to Wytheville VA

We awakened at 6:00 am on Sunday, August 28. I surfed Facebook for a short time, checked email and did Bing searches.  Facebook, checking email and Bing searches in addition to reading a couple digital newspapers are my usual morning routine. We showered and got dressed.  We ate breakfast – oatmeal in a bowl and coffee/tea.  I ate a banana too.  We finished packing and then relaxed, as we do not have to leave Maggie Valley until 9:00 am.  In the past we have left by 6:00 am, one of the first to leave.  We are meeting Bob’s brother, John, and our sister-in-law Dorothy at 12:00 pm at Cracker Barrel in Statesville NC.  John and Dorothy flew from Hawaii to North Carolina on August 24 to visit with a friend, who is going into hospice care in Charlotte.  Google maps says that we are a little over a 2-hour drive from Cracker Barrel.  We will allow 3 hours for the 2-hour drive. 

We left A Holiday Motel at 9:00 am, en route Statesville NC.  We were among the few to leave last.

We met John and Dorothy at Cracker Barrel 11:45 am.  Shortly before their arrival, I checked us in for lunch.  A 25-minute wait turned into a 35-minute wait.  Dorothy ordered pot roast; I ordered meatloaf; and Bob and John ordered Barrel Cheeseburgers.  Our lunches were good, as was the conversation. The last time the four of us had been together was in Hawaii in September 2018. There was a lot to catch up on. The conversation continued, after lunch, outside on the porch. It was SO good to see Dorothy and John. We only wish our getting together was under better circumstances.

We ate lunch at Cracker Barrel with John and Dorothy.

We departed Cracker Barrel at 2:30 pm en route Wytheville.  We arrived at Comfort Suites Wytheville shortly before 5:00 pm.

We ate dinner at a nearby Subway.   We ordered two different six inch subs, potato chips and beverage.  We were back at the hotel by 6:30 pm.  I changed into PJs.  I was in bed by 8:30 pm.

Virginia and North Carolina Vacation: Day 7

Friday, August 26, was the third day of SEVROC.

We got up around 7:00 am and ate breakfast in our room.

After breakfast I sat outside our room, enjoying the crisp air of the morning. I also watched fog rolling over the mountains.

At 8:42 am a heavy fog was still rolling over the mountains.

At 9:00 am a few of our friends left A Holiday Motel to ride up The Rattler (NC 209) to Hot Springs.

They are off, with “Skid” in the lead.
Skid’s blog post will provide details and photographs of the ride.

At 9:30 am Bob and I left en route the Fred W Symmes Chapel. We traveled via Interstate or highway most of the way and arrived at 11:12 am.

The Fred W Symmes Chapel is located in Cleveland, South Carolina. The chapel is also known as “Pretty Place” because of its amazing view.

The Fred W Symmes Chapel
As I walked into the open-air sanctuary, I was filled with awe.
Such an incredible place to visit!
What a breathtaking view!

We left the chapel around 11:30 am and began the second part of our sightseeing journey. We visited several waterfalls, as well as a visitor center for the Pisgah National Forest.

Connestee Falls Park is located about 6 miles from Brevard NC, along U.S. Route 276. We took a very short stroll from the right rear of the parking lot to the viewing area for two waterfalls: Connestee Falls and Baston Creek Falls. There is a Connestee Falls that is a gated community. You need to drive past the gated community to Connestee Falls Park. There is a realtor’s office next to the park. I tell you this because EVERY SINGLE TIME we have visited Connestee Falls and Baston Creek Falls, we have turned into the gated community and were turned away!

This wheelchair accessible trail leads to an overlook of the Connestee and Batson Falls.
The viewing platform sits on top of Connestee Falls.
Panoramic view of Connestee Falls and Batson Falls
I zoomed in to capture this picture of Batson Falls.
This video shows the Connestee Falls, as it drops to the bottom of its hill and joins Batson Falls, as it drops to the bottom of its hill.

From Connestee Falls Park we drove to another waterfall. Located a short distance from Brevard along Route 276 is Looking Glass Falls. It had started to rain, as we approached Looking Glass Falls. As a result, we didn’t hike down the trail to lower viewing platforms. We viewed the falls from the top viewing platform only.

Looking Glass Falls is 60 feet tall.

From Looking Glass Falls we backtracked a short distance and visited the National Forest Visitor Center Pisgah Ranger Division.  It was pouring rain; glad we didn’t have to park far from the building! I obtained a National Park Service passport cancellation stamp for Pisgah National Forest and looked at the exhibits.

This is a replica of the entrance gate that once stood at the entrance to Pisgah National Forest.
This is the only bear that we saw, while on vacation.

The rain stopped, as we drove through Brevard.

Our next stop was at another waterfall.

Shortly before reaching Highlands is Lake Sequoyah Dam Falls. 

Sequoyah Falls flow over a man made dam. 

Our next stop was at Bridal Falls. At one time it was possible to drive under the falls. The road under the falls has been closed the past few times, when we visited.

There wasn’t much water falling at Bridal Falls.

By the way this was our first visit in the summer in this part of the United States. In the past we have visited in May. Waterfalls have significantly more water flow in May.

Our last sightseeing stop was at Dry Falls.

Bob took this picture of me,
as we hiked down the stairs to the base of Dry Falls.
Dry Falls is 75 feet tall.
Dry Falls earned its name because you
can take a trail to walk behind the falls
and not get wet (well, not too wet).
Bob took this picture of me, when I was behind the falls.
I kept as close to the rock wall, as possible,
without hitting my head.
I stayed mostly dry.

Well, I stayed mostly dry behind the falls. It started to rain again on our hike back up the stairs. We both got fairly wet!

At 3:16 pm we began our drive back to A Holiday Motel. Wouldn’t you know the sun came out a few minutes’ drive past Dry Falls?

We ate dinner at the Sagebrush Steakhouse in Waynesville and made it back to A Holiday Motel around 6:00 pm.

Tonight was the “hotel room crawl” at A Holiday Motel.  It had been a long day. We called it a night at 9:00 pm, without participating in the crawl.

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