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Posts tagged ‘Presque Isle State Park’

Presque Isle State Park Day Trip

We left home at 10:00 am on Saturday, January 26th, en route Erie.  I did not like traveling on either Follett Run Road or Preston Road, both of which were snow covered and hilly.  The road surface for the remainder of our drive to Erie was good.  We drove to the following destinations, while in Erie:  Presque Isle State Park. Cheddars Scratch Kitchen, Best Buy and Sam’s Club.

Arriving at Presque Isle State Park, we drove around the peninsula, making a few stops along the way. 

Soon after entering the park, we noticed the trees were coated with white snow.

The snow-covered trees along Peninsula Drive were gorgeous!

We saw the new emergency intake tower, which often is mistaken for a lighthouse, at the Waterworks area.  Bob and I have always referred to the tower as a lighthouse.  I told Bob that the lighthouse was in a different spot, when we first saw it.  Bob said no it wasn’t.  I said yes it is.  Well, I am right.  I have photographic and written proof!

This was the old Waterworks Lighthouse.

The old Waterworks Lighthouse was removed in late 2017.  It is believed that the emergency intake tower was installed in the early 1900s. The valve apparatus has not been operational for decades,

The newly restored and repainted lighthouse was installed in September 2018.  It is located to the left of the original lighthouse and quite a bit forward of the sign seen in the photograph displayed above.  It was installed on land, not on water.  Donations helped to pay for the $80,000 project, with $50,000 coming from the Dan and Sallie Shipley Charitable Fund.

This is the new Waterworks Lighthouse.

Jayme, one of Bob’s coworkers, told Bob that he would be ice fishing on either Misery Bay or Horseshoe Pond.  We planned to walk across the ice to where Jayme was fishing.  As it turned out, Jayme didn’t go to Presque Isle to ice fish, as he had heard that the ice wasn’t good.  There were some ice fishing huts both on Misery Bay and Horseshoe Pond.

Horseshoe Pond Houseboats and Ice Fishing Hut

This houseboat with a replica of the North Pier Lighthouse is my favorite of all the houseboats on Horseshoe Pond.

Panoramic Image of some of the houseboats on Horseshoe Pond and Ice Fishing Huts

Continuing around Presque Isle we stopped at the Waterworks area, located across Peninsula Drive from where we had stopped earlier to admire the new Waterworks Lighthouse.  We were on the lake side of the peninsula.

Lake Erie

Today was Snow Day at Presque Isle State Park.  At the event, organized by the Presque Isle Partnership, visitors could enjoy everything from dog sled and snow show demonstrations, to outdoor cooking and ice fishing.  Our interest in stopping at this event was to see a dog sled demonstration, which we did. 

Bob captured video of the dog sled demonstration, while I captured still images.  Bob’s video is short, only a little over a minute.  So please do click on the play button!

 

 

Dog Sled Demo at Presque Isle Snow Day event

 

Shortly before the dog sled demo we petted one of the Siberian Huskies, a beautiful girl named Meeka.  She was really soft!  Meeka was the lead dog in the dog sled demonstration that we watched.

From Presque Isle State Park we drove to Cheddars Scratch Kitchen, where we ate lunch.  Bob ordered from the “Lighter Side”.  The entree Bob chose was bourbon-glazed grilled salmon over seasoned rice, broccoli cheese casserole and a house salad.  I ordered from “Comfort Food”.  My entree was homemade chicken pot pie with a house salad.  We enjoyed both of our meals.

From Cheddars we drove to Best Buy.  In June 2017 I purchased a 10.5 in. 256 GB iPad Pro tablet.  At the time I was in a quandary.  Do I buy the 10.5 in. tablet or the bigger, more expensive 12.9 in. tablet.  I chose the 10.5 in. tablet because I thought the larger tablet would be too big for me.  In hindsight, I should have purchased the 12.9 in. tablet.  Well, today, I purchased a new 12.9 in. 256 GB iPad Pro tablet, along with a Smart Keyboard case and Apple Pencil.  The Smart Keyboard case was not in stock.  I am expecting delivery of the Smart Keyboard case by Tuesday, Jan. 29th.  The new Apple Pencil attaches magnetically to my iPad, a feature that I love.  So, I am a happy owner of a new iPad Pro tablet!  I plan to sell my 10.5 in. iPad Pro, along with its keyboard and pencil, as a package in the near future.

From Best Buy we drove to Sam’s Club, where we picked up a few groceries.  We renewed our Sam’s Club membership in December last year, after allowing the membership to lapse a few months prior when Sam’s Club closed in Jamestown, NY.  The Sam’s Club in Erie is farther for us to drive than it was for us to go to Sam’s Club in Jamestown.  After several months without a membership, we decided that we go to Erie often enough that a Sam’s Club membership would be worthwhile.  Besides I miss some of the foods and paper products that we would buy at Sam’s Club.  The reason for driving to Erie on Saturday was to go to Sam’s Club.

From Sam’s Club we made our way back home.  I didn’t believe snow was in Saturday’s forecast.  Well, it snowed the whole way back home!

Grandpa Bob and Grandma Linda’s Special Day with Harper

Bob and I spent one-on-one time with our granddaughter Harper this past Saturday.  We like spending time with both of our granddaughters at the same time, but we also treasure the one-on-one times that we have with this as well.  We spent one-on-one time with Harper’s sister, Juniper, in late April.  This past Saturday was special time with Harper.

We picked up Harper at her house around 8:30 am.

We arrived at the Erie Zoo at 10:00 am. The line to get into the zoo was long — longer than I have even seen it.  It was Big Equipment Day at the zoo, but it wasn’t crowded like this last year!  We decided to come back later in the day.

Leaving the zoo, we drove to the Tom Ridge Environmental Center (TREC).  The highlight of our visit to the TREC was being on top of the observation tower.  We rode the elevator to the top of the 75-foot tall tower.

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Harper on top of the observation tower
The bit of blue you see in the background is Lake Erie.

IMG_20170603_104621Harper and I on top of the observation tower
Lake Erie and Waldameer are visible from the top of the tower.
(photo by Bob)

Inside TREC, we quickly walked around the exhibits.  Harper pushed buttons on some of the exhibits and showed some interest in other exhibits.  We probably spent half an hour or less inside the TREC.

From TREC we visited Presque Isle State Park. We made two stops on our drive around Presque Isle: at North Pier Lighthouse and at Waterworks Playground.

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Harper enjoyed walking with us on the pier to the North Pier Lighthouse.

The Waterworks Playground is located adjacent to the Rotary Pavilion and across from Beach 7 (Waterworks Beach).  Bob and I have passed by this playground many times.  I always thought it would be a good playground at which to take our granddaughters.  We didn’t take Juniper here during her one-on-one time with us because it was raining.  It is a very nice playground, but the climbing ropes were somewhat scary for Harper.  A bumble bee flying around didn’t help either!

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Harper on one of several climbing ropes.

IMG_20170603_121130This is all the further Harper climbed.
She was frozen in place.  I helped her down.

From Presque Isle State Park, we drove to the local McDonald’s Restaurant and ate lunch.  After lunch, we returned to the zoo.

It was 1:30 pm, when we made it back to Erie Zoo. There was still a line at the entry gate, but the line was at least a quarter of what it was at 10:00 am.

We had a good time at the zoo seeing the animals, riding the Wildlife Carousel, and riding the train. I put together a slideshow that highlights our day at the zoo.

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Also a video of the zoo train as it departs, with Harper and me on board.  We are in one of the last cars; you should see Harper waving at Bob, who was recording the video.

Please click here, if you are not able to view the embedded video of the Erie Zoo train.

It was 4:15pm, when we left Erie Zoo. We stopped at Country Fair for cold drinks, before making our trek back home.

We returned Harper home at 5:45 pm. Juniper was excited to show me that she got her fingernails painted. While Bob and I had one-on-one time with Harper, Stacey had the same with Juniper. Stacey said that she and Juniper had a good day, except for the hour she spend arguing with Juniper over why she can’t go to the mall. Harper and I had “a moment” too. She was not going to sit with me in the zoo train; she was going to sit behind Grandpa, not me, on our way home.  Harper was mad at me because Grandma wouldn’t let her sit on top of the bronze statue’s head at the zoo. Through no effort on my part Harper did sit with me on the zoo train, and she sat behind me on the way back home.  Life with 5-year-olds….

It was a long, but fun, day.  I think our next family adventure will include both of our granddaughters.

Grampa Bob and Gramma Linda’s Special Day with Juniper

We picked up Juniper, our almost 5-year-old granddaughter, at “Big Grandma” Chris’s house shortly before 9:00 am on Saturday, April 29, and left en route Erie.

In Erie we spent the day visiting the Erie Zoo, visiting the Tom Ridge Environmental Center, driving around Presque Isle and eating a late lunch at McDonalds.

We arrived at the Erie Zoo around 10:20 am. We lucked out by securing a parking space right in front of the main entrance to the zoo. I suspect our luck had more to do with Saturday’s weather (chilly and rainy) than our early arrival. After showing our membership card and ID at the gate, we were admitted into the zoo. We saw all the animals without getting too wet. We only got a quick glimpse of baby Otis (new orangutan) before mama orangutan covered herself and baby with newspaper and a sheet. A highlight of our Zoo visit was seeing a kangaroo and a baby wallaby and its mama on the walking path, rather than far from us behind the wood rail fence.  Juniper rode both the Wildlife Carousel and the train. Bob rode the carousel with Juniper, and I rode the train with her.  I put together this slide show to highlight our day at the zoo.

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Before leaving the zoo, we purchased two bags of cotton candy, one for Juniper and the other for Harper. We spent approximately 1-1/2 hours at the zoo. We might have been there for a longer time if the playground was still there. The playground was removed recently. A new playground will be installed by late May.

From the zoo we drove to the Tom Ridge Environmental Center (TREC). The TREC, which opened its doors in May/June 2006, is the gateway to Presque Isle State Park. Its entrance is across from Waldameer Park.  Bob and I hadn’t been there in a while, and it was Juniper’s first visit. There are more child-related activities there than we remembered. Juniper enjoyed her visit.

As we entered the lobby of the main entrance the first things to catch Juniper’s eyes were three floor-to-ceiling towers.  Each tower was filled with carved wooden scenes about Presque Isle.  Each scene had movable parts!

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Three Towers of Carved Wooden Scenes About Presque Isle

Erie200702_009One of the many carved wooden scenes

The next thing that caught Juniper’s eye was a HUGE fish.

XZ290886Memories and Monsters Exhibit

The “Memories and Monsters” exhibit has the visitor walking through the middle of a HUGE fish into a small theater area.  This exhibit takes you back in time to the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s when things were very different on Presque Isle.

Near the big fish was a hands-on room, especially designed for preschoolers.

_XZ90895Hands-On Activity Room

Do you wonder what everyone is looking at through the windows?

XZ290889There is a bird feeding station outside the windows.
The bird feeding station was visited by a turkey the day we were there.

Before leaving TREC, we stopped at the gift shop. Juniper picked out two streamer toys, one for her and one for Harper. I found a picture of the same or similar toy for sale on Amazon.

When we left TREC, we drove around Presque Isle.

It was after 1:30 pm by the time we completed our drive around Presque Isle. We stopped at McDonalds, located near Presque Isle, for a late lunch.

As we were leaving McDonalds, I telephoned “Big Grandma” Chris to let her know that we were running behind. We were supposed to pick up Harper at Chris’s house and take both girls to “Little Grandma” Sue’s house, where they would be spending the night. The plan was to pick up Harper and arrive at Sue’s house between 3:00 and 4:00 pm. As we were running behind, that wasn’t going to happen. Chris ended up taking Harper to Sue’s house, and we dropped off Juniper there shortly before 5:00 pm.

What a wonderful day we had with Juniper!  We are looking forward to a similar experience with Harper in a few weeks.

 

A Springtime Tease

Bob and I took advantage of this past weekend’s lovely weather.  We spent several hours both on Saturday and Sunday enjoying the abundant sunshine and warmer temperatures.  The temperature rose into the low 60s on Saturday.  It was a little cooler, with temperatures rising into the low 50s, on Sunday but still very nice day to be outdoors.

On Saturday Bob and I drove to Erie, where we spent several hours at Presque Isle State Park.  I wish we would have brought our bicycles with us.  I would have enjoyed riding our bicycles around the park, as we did one time last year.  Instead of riding bicycles, we drove around Presque Isle State Park.  We made several photo stops along the way.

_LG20381The Feather

We walked up the 100′ wooden deck for an overlook of the marsh on Presque Isle Bay.

_LG20383The Feather

_LG20384Someone shared their love story on the deck of The Feather.

_LG20386This is the view of the marsh on Presque Isle Bay from The Feather.

Our next stop was at the Perry Monument.

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Perry Monument

The Perry Monument is 101 feet tall and commemorates the victory of Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry in the Battle of Lake Erie on September 10th, 1813.

_LG20402Seagulls at the Perry Monument

_LG20404Goose coming in for a landing at the Perry Monument

Our next stop was along Coast Guard Road, en route the North Pier.

_XZ80522Houseboats on Horseshoe Pond

_LG20407Close-up picture of one of the houseboats on Horseshoe Pond

_LG20412One of several seagulls flying over Horseshoe Pond

Our next stop was at the North Pier.

_LG20416North Pier Lighthouse

Our last stop at Presque Isle State Park would be at the Presque Isle Lighthouse.  Before arriving at that lighthouse, though, we made one other stop along the park road beside a swamp.

_XZ80523Presque Isle State Park Swamp

_LG20430Crow in a Tree at Swamp

Our last stop at Presque Isle State Park was at the Presque Isle Lighthouse.

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Presque Isle Lighthouse

_XZ80529Presque Isle Lighthouse Beach

On Sunday we spent the afternoon with our granddaughters, taking them on an outing to Allegany State Park near Salamanca, NY — the subject of my next blog post.

It was a wonderful weekend to be out and about…a tease for the Spring to come.

Meeting In Person for the First Time

A question asked on Facebook led to the first meeting of two Facebook friends.

This past Wednesday afternoon I sent a message to a photography friend asking if she uses, or if she has ever used, a camera bean bag when taking pictures. My friend wrote back that she uses a camera bean bag frequently and that she loves it. As it turned out, my friend’s camera bean bag was the exact bean bag that I had been considering for purchase. I was undecided as to what size bean bag to purchase, as well as whether or not I would use one. My photography friend lives a couple hours’ drive east of my hometown. I asked if she would be coming over this way anytime soon. If so, I could try out her camera bean bag prior to making a decision whether or not to purchase one for myself. Talk about timing! My friend, Bernadette, and her husband Tom would be in Erie on Friday. We quickly made plans to meet up in Erie on Friday afternoon.

Bernadette and I became Facebook friends on January 10, this year. While searching for photographs taken at Presque Isle State Park, Bernadette stumbled onto pictures that I had taken that led her to my Facebook page. Bernadette sent me a Facebook friend request.  I accepted Bernadette’s friend request, after noting that we had one friend in common and that we were members of the same Facebook group, a group of photographers who like to photograph Pennsylvania elk. Since becoming Facebook friends, we have been admiring each others’ photography. In addition to sharing her photography on Facebook, Bernadette maintains a website, Edge of the Woods Photography, to showcase her beautiful scenes of nature, wildlife, old buildings and landscapes.

Yesterday, soon after Bob came home from work, we left home en route Erie, PA. We met Bernadette and Tom for lunch at Molly Brannigans Irish Pub. For the next hour or so the four of us ate a good lunch and enjoyed getting to know each other. We talked about what work we do (or did), retirement plans (seems to be more on my mind now that I am 60 years old), motorcycling, photography and future opportunities to meet up. The conversation flowed.  I didn’t sense any feeling of nervousness among the four of us on this our first meeting.

After lunch, we drove to Presque Isle State Park and met Bernadette and Tom at Beach 11. Bernadette gave me her camera bean bag before leaving the restaurant. I would try it out along the way to Beach 11. Bob and I stopped at Perry Monument, where I used the bean bag to take a couple pictures of seagulls hanging out at Misery Bay.

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Misery Bay Seagulls

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The camera bean bag did allow me to take sharp pictures with a long lens.  However, I am much more comfortable using a tripod to take pictures, even from inside of our car I think.  I don’t know if that fact will change if I purchase a camera bean bag. I did learn that a large-size bean bag would be the one I purchased, if I decide to purchase one.

We arrived at Beach 11 a few minutes before Bernadette and Tom. Bob and I left for our drive back home after a little more conversation, a few pictures and hugs goodbye.

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Our friends Bernadette and Tom

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Bob took this picture of Bernadette and me.

The four of us are looking forward to the next time we can reconnect. That next time will be later this month in Chincoteague, VA. Our travel plans are such that we will be in the same place for 2 days!  What a coincidence!

It was so nice to meet you and Tom, Bernadette. We are looking forward to seeing you both later this month!

On This Day in 2007 – Presque Isle State Park, PA

On March 24, 2015 Facebook introduced “On This Day“, a way to look back at content (photos and memories) that you shared on this date in the past on Facebook.  I have used this feature several times, since it was rolled out on Facebook. Sharing On This Day memories in this blog, named “Days to Remember”, seems an apt thing to do.  I will share On This Day memories from time to time.  I hope that you enjoy my look back, when I do so.

The date was February 24, 2007.  We spent the day at Presque Isle State Park in Erie, PA.

Our first stop was at the Tom Ridge Environmental Center (TREC), which is located across from the street from Waldameer Park.

Erie200702_023Tom Ridge Environmental Center

The TREC, which opened its doors in late May / early June 2006, is the gateway to Presque Isle State Park.  It was our first visit to the center.  While at the TREC we climbed a 75-foot observation tower, viewed a few exhibits and attended a winter carnival.

As we entered the lobby of the main entrance the first things to catch my eye were three floor-to-ceiling towers.  Each tower was filled with carved wooden scenes (with movable parts!) about Presque Isle.

Erie200702_002
Three floor to ceiling towers located at lobby entrance

Erie200702_009This is a close-up view of one of the carved wooden scenes,
located inside one of the floor-to-ceiling towers.

A few other exhibits caught my eye as well.  One exhibit called “Memories and Monsters” has the visitor walking through the middle of a HUGE fish into a small theater area.  This exhibit takes you back in time to the 40’s, 50’s and 60’s when things were very different on Presque Isle.  I didn’t take a picture of the “Memories and Monsters” exhibit during our visit in 2007.  The exhibit, though, was still a part of TREC in February 2011, when my friends, Valerie and Paula, and I visited Presque Isle State Park.

D2049479 4x6“Memories and Monsters” Exhibit
(February 2011)

There is an exhibit on the second floor that is devoted to birds and bird watching. Again, I didn’t take any pictures of the birds and bird watching exhibit during our visit in 2007.  I did, though, take a picture of the exhibit in February 2011 during that visit.

D2049475 4x6Birds and Bird Watching Exhibit
(February 2011)

We rode the elevator to the top of the 75-foot tall observation tower.  We stepped outside and walked around the top of the tower.  It was a gorgeous sunny day, and we enjoyed the spectacular panoramic view before us.

Erie200702_007Bob took this picture of me standing on the observation tower platform.

Erie200702_004Waldameer Park, as seen from the TREC observation tower

Erie200702_005Lake Erie, as seen from the TREC observation tower

The main reason we stopped at the TREC was to attend a winter carnival.  We enjoyed watching professional ice carving demonstrations and looking at the ice sculptures that were on display.  We spent at least 30 minutes watching ice carving demonstrations.

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A carnival wouldn’t be complete without at least one clown and a costumed character.

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TREC Winter Carnival Clown

Erie200702_013This family didn’t seem to mind that a larger-than-life penguin sat down beside them!

 

When we left the Tom Ridge Environmental Center we drove around Presque Isle State Park.  Presque Isle takes on an entirely different look in the wintertime.  We saw what appeared to be a village on ice, as we gazed upon countless ice fishing hots spread across the frozen waters of Lake Erie.

Erie200702_024Village of Fishing Huts

We stopped at Perry Monument.  The walkway to the monument was covered with snow, many inches deep.  We were able to walk across the snow, which was hardened, without falling through.

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Bob took this picture of me at Perry Monument.

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Perry Monument

Along the Lake Erie shoreline ice dunes had formed.

Erie200702_026Presque Isle Ice Dunes

There were signs throughout the park to stay off ice dunes.  When ice dunes form, they’re not always a solid block of ice. They have a lot of air underneath them and they don’t hold a lot of weight, so anyone walking on them could fall through to the icy water.

 

We saw two dogs that appeared to be enjoying their visit to Presque Isle.

Erie200702_028One dog looked “dressed” for the weather; the other dog must have had cold feet!

For some time I had wanted to take a picture of the Presque Isle Lighthouse from the roadway, rather than from the beach.  The opportunity to take such a picture presented itself during our visit, as the lighthouse was not blocked by leaf cover!

Erie200702_035Presque Isle Lighthouse

What a nice memory from 9 years ago!

Day Trip to Erie, PA

On Friday, November 20, Bob had a 1:00 pm service appointment for our Nissan Xterra at Signature Nissan in Jamestown, NY.   Bob came home with a loaner car, as service will not be completed until Monday.

On Saturday we decided to go for a drive in our loaner car. We left home mid morning and drove to Presque Isle State Park in Erie, PA.  Upon arriving at Presque Isle, we drove around the peninsula making several photo stops along the way.

_LG19188_LG19189_LG19190-HDR 4x6Erie Bayfront, as seen from near Perry Monument

_LG19200_LG19201_LG19202-HDR 4x6Erie Bayfront
Dobbins Landing, with Bicentennial Tower, on the left
and Sheraton Bayfront Hotel and Bayfront Convention Center on the right

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North Pier Lighthouse

 

Our last stop on the peninsula was at the Presque Isle Lighthouse.

_LG19227 4x6Walking on the beach to capture beachfront view of Presque Isle Lighthouse.
The high temperature on Saturday was 46 degrees.
It was a bit chilly for a picnic lunch!

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Presque Isle Lighthouse

_LG19249 4x6Bob and I on Presque Isle Lighthouse beach
From where we were standing, we could see the lighthouse.

_LG19245_LG19246_LG19247-HDR 4x6Presque Isle Lighthouse beach
These two trees always catch my eye, when we walk on this beach.
The picnic table shown in an earlier photograph is on the other side of these trees.

I enjoy visiting Presque Isle State Park.  I am happy that the park is located only a little more than an hour’s drive from our house.

 

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