The Beauty Around Us

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Posts tagged ‘Presque Isle State Park’

Overnight Getaway

We returned home late this morning from an overnight getaway.  We spent the night at Best Western in Erie PA, using a $25 gift certificate that expires later this month as partial payment.  We earned the gift certificate from a prior stay at a Best Western hotel.  I believe we will earn another $25 gift certificate from this stay.

We departed Warren shortly after 9:00 am yesterday and arrived at our hotel around 2:45 pm.  We made a few stops en route the hotel.

Before leaving Warren we stopped at Tim Hortons, where Bob purchased a cup of coffee.

Our second stop was in Findley Lake NY.  We saw nothing of interest and moved on.

Upon arriving in Erie we drove the perimeter of Presque Isle, stopping briefly to capture photographs of ducks and Canadian geese in a swamp area.

Pair of Mallard Ducks at Presque Isle State Park (Erie, PA)

Pair of Canadian Geese at Presque Isle State Park (Erie, PA)

That goose on the left was very noisy!  Two Canadian Geese, equally noisy, flew overhead just moments after I had returned to our car.

We ate lunch at Cheddars Scratch Kitchen in Erie.  Bob ordered Creamy Garlic Tilapia & Shrimp over rice, with broccoli cheese casserole and southern green beans.  I ordered a chicken tender platter, with salad and French fries.  Both meals were delicious.  

Our final stop before going to the hotel was at the Erie Zoo.  When the zoo reopened last year during the COVID pandemic, timed tickets were required for entry.  Timed tickets are required again this year, but NOT for the month of March.  We used our membership card to enter the zoo.  We went for a stroll through the zoo.  I didn’t take too many pictures.  The majority of my pictures were of an orangutan family.

Erie Zoo Wild Asia entrance

Erie Zoo Bornean Orangutans

Erie Zoo Bornean Orangutan

We had considered taking our granddaughters to the zoo, if Stacey’s employer had her scheduled to work in Erie on Monday.  We could have driven the girls to Erie, and Stacey could have taken them back home.  I am glad, though, that I did not approach Stacey with my idea.  The majority of the animals were quiet or not visible.  The merry-go-round, playground and train ride were closed, as were all the food vendors.  We will take the girls to the zoo in April, when it is warmer (and hopefully more of the zoo will be open).  Our present zoo membership expires on 30 April.  I have not yet decided, if we will renew the membership.

As I wrote earlier, we arrived at the hotel around 2:45 pm.  We checked into room 408, a two queen bed suite.  We had eaten a late lunch and knew we wouldn’t be hungry for dinner.  Other than Bob driving to a nearby fuel station to pick up water and snacks, we stayed in for rest of the day.  We had a relaxing afternoon and evening watching TV, for the most part.  We particularly liked the science fiction movie “Divergent”.  This movie is old, having been released in 2014.  We had never seen the movie and are interested in watching the next two sequels, “Insurgent” and “Allegiant”.

Now for the next day …

We were showered, dressed and had eaten breakfast by 8:00 am this morning.  Rather than grab a “grab n go” breakfast at the hotel, we ate breakfast at the nearby Cracker Barrel.  Bob ordered a double meat breakfast; I ordered Grandma’s Sampler.  Breakfast was delicious and filling.

After breakfast, we began our drive back home.  We drove home via Route 5, along the shores of Lake Erie.  We made three photo stops.

Our first stop was next door to North East Marina in North East, PA.

This lighthouse-shaped building is near the North East Marina in North East, PA.  The body of water in the background is Lake Erie.

After a quick search, I couldn’t find any information on the Internet about this building.  The next time we are in this area we plan to stop at North East Marina and make some inquiries.

Our second stop was at Barcelona Harbor in Westfield NY, where we saw more seagulls.

Seagull in Flight

This is the same Seagull in flight.

Two Seagulls

Several Seagulls

Our third stop was at Bournes Creek Falls, located a couple miles from Barcelona Harbor.

We saw Bournes Creek Falls for the first time in January.  The waterfall looked a lot different today than it did in January!


We continued on to Dunkirk NY, where we left the shores of Lake Erie and headed south.

We returned home at 11:30 am.  Our kitty, Wickett, sure was happy to see us.


Presque Isle State Park

Bob and I drove to Erie PA yesterday morning. While in Erie, we visited Presque Isle State Park.  As we drove around Presque Isle, we made a few photo stops.

Our first stop was at the Presque Isle Waterworks Lighthouse.

Waterworks Lighthouse

This “lighthouse” is actually an emergency intake tower.  It is often mistaken for a lighthouse.  Bob and I have always referred to the tower as a lighthouse.

Our next photo stop was at Perry Monument.

Perry Monument

The Perry Monument commemorates the Battle of Lake Erie, in which Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry earned the Battle of 1812’s greatest naval victory.

Bob and I sat on the wall surrounding Perry Monument for a short while.  We enjoyed the bright sunshine and warm temperatures.  Boy, though, was the wind strong! I put my hood up to tame my hair that was blowing in the wind.

Bob and I at Perry Monument

Our next stop was at the North Pier Lighthouse.

North Pier Lighthouse

Seagulls were congregated in front of the lighthouse.  I am sure that they were enjoying the sunshine too.

All of a sudden several seagulls took flight!

North Pier Lighthouse

Right before taking this photograph, I had changed the settings on my camera to take pictures of birds in flight.  I had my camera poised, ready to press the shutter button.  A voice behind me said “I don’t mean to be an a$$, but …”, just as I took this photograph.

North Pier Lighthouse

I didn’t mind him being an a$$ at all!

Our last stop was at Horseshoe Pond.  There are several houseboats moored at Horseshoe Pond.

Horseshoe Pond Houseboats

Of all the houseboats at Horseshoe Pond, this houseboat with a replica of the North Pier lighthouse is my favorite.

Horseshoe Pond Houseboats

From Presque Isle we drove to the Erie Zoo, the subject of my next blog post.

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!

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.

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.

Misery Bay Seagulls


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.

Our friends Bernadette and Tom

Bob took this picture of Bernadette and me.

It was so nice to meet you and Tom, Bernadette. We are looking forward to the next time we can reconnect.


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.

Erie Bayfront, as seen from near Perry Monument

Erie Bayfront
Dobbins Landing, with Bicentennial Tower, on the left
and Sheraton Bayfront Hotel and Bayfront Convention Center on the right

North Pier Lighthouse


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

Walking 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!

Presque Isle Lighthouse

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

Presque 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.


Presque Isle State Park and Dinner Out

On Saturday, June 6th, Bob and I went for a motorcycle ride that added 190 miles to our odometer.  We left home around 11:00 am and didn’t return home until after 7:00 pm. We rode to Lake Erie State Park, where we enjoyed a picnic with a view.

From Lake Erie State Park we rode west along Lake Erie, via Route 5, en route Presque Isle State Park in Erie, PA. We made two photo stops. Our first photo stop was at Barcelona Harbor in Westfield, NY.  Our second photo stop was at Dobbins Landing in Erie.

From Dobbins Landing we rode to Presque Isle State Park.  We made several stops during our ride around the peninsula.

We stopped at the Presque Isle Marina.

We saw the marina for the first time this Winter.  Saturday was the first time we had seen boats at the marina.

We stopped at the North Pier Lighthouse.  I have taken lots of photographs of the lighthouse over the years.  The majority of the photographs have been taken, while standing on the pier.  I wanted to capture the view from another vantage point.  Instead of walking along the pier, we headed in the opposite direction along the North Pier Trail.  This trail follows the shoreline between North Pier and Beach 11, along one of the sand ridges.   There were several paths along the way, leading to the lake shore.

The first path I found led to a very narrow sand beach.
I decided to take a photograph of the lighthouse from the trail.

This path led to a wider beach.

The lake was a little bit choppy.

Bob took this photograph of me on the beach, with the lighthouse in the background.

In the opposite direction of the lighthouse,
I saw two young people who were enjoying a walk along the lake shore.

One last photograph of the North Pier Lighthouse

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

Presque Isle Lighthouse

The lighthouse wasn’t the only attraction for me.  The beach was of interest too.

Presque Isle beaches are beautiful.
I have seen and photographed these trees so many times.
The trees still attract my attention.

This “beach art” was a new sight for me.

Does this look like an animal’s head to you?

From Presque Isle State Park we rode to Peach Street, where we ate dinner at the Texas Roadhouse. I ordered a 6 oz. Sirloin Steak with a fully loaded baked potato and House Salad. Bob ordered a Rib-eye Steak with. House Salad and Broccoli. Both meals were excellent.

Thus concludes our day ride along the shores of Lake Erie.

Erie Weekend Getaway – Day 3

I have written about our weekend in Erie, PA in my last two blog posts.  This blog post wraps up our weekend in Erie.

Sunday didn’t get off to a good start. As Bob was getting into the shower/bath tub, he slipped and fell out of the tub.  The hotel was not at fault, as they did provide a hand rail inside the tub.  Thankfully, Bob didn’t hit his head.  He landed on his tailbone, and he must have twisted his neck.  Both his tailbone and neck (and lower back) hurt throughout the day.  Bob did go to work on Monday; he says that his tailbone and neck feel okay now.

We checked out of the hotel at 8:50 am and made one last trip around Presque Isle State Park.

We visited the West Pier for the first time on Saturday.  We returned to the West Pier on Sunday.  There were no windsurfers on ice on Sunday morning, as they were on Saturday.  The view across Presque Isle Bay, though, was much clearer.

Dobbins Landing and Bicentennial Tower, as seen from the West Pier

We saw Dean Zeller, our new friend, again. He had just pulled off the road and was setting up a tripod to take a picture of the Erie skyline. We stopped and chatted briefly.

During our drive around Presque Isle, we returned to most of the same places that we stopped at on Friday and Saturday.

The seagulls and ducks at the North Pier kept me entertained for several minutes.

North Pier Lighthouse

In addition to returning to the same places that we visited on Friday and Saturday, we made a stop at the Presque Isle Lighthouse.

Presque Isle Lighthouse

Bob at Presque Isle Lighthouse beach

Sunday was overcast, but a brighter day than Saturday.
It was a very cold day, though, same as Saturday.

Presque Isle Lighthouse Beach

We had hoped to catch sight of the snowy owl, while at Presque Isle State Park.  Unfortunately, we didn’t see a snowy owl the entire weekend.

From Presque Isle State Park we went to Presque Isle Downs and Casino. It didn’t take long for us to lose $40.00. My $20 lasted for a longer time than did the $20.00 that Bob played.

We ate lunch at Famous Dave’s. Neither of us had eaten before at this restaurant. Bob ordered Hot Link Sausages, Homemade Barbecue Chips and Firecracker Green Beans (Green beans with bacon, onion, garlic and crushed red pepper). My meal choice was Barbecue Chicken, Potato Salad, and Creamy Coleslaw. Both entrees included a Corn Bread Muffin. Lunch was tasty, and we will most likely make a return visit someday.

After lunch we made our way back home.  We had a good weekend.  The change in scenery was wonderful!



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