Niagara Falls!

For Memorial Day weekend, we went to Niagara Falls in Canada! (I know, who goes to Canada for a US holiday?)

Our dear friends the B’s invited us up a while ago – we stayed at the Marriot Gateway on the Falls, and had Falls-side rooms. The views were gorgeous, the rooms were spacious, and we enjoyed the hotel itself.

A couple of caveats, though, for other travelers: definitely stay on the Canada side. From the US side, you can’t see the fronts of the falls, just the sides/backs. You can do the Maid of the Mist boat tours from either sides, but there’s something to be said for looking at the faces of the Falls throughout the day. The area is also pricey – our hotel bar had 3 taxes after the actual total – a Provincial, a Federal, and then some hybrid provincial/federal due to them being a hotel with a restaurant on premises. Crazy!

The drive up was great – we stopped in Buffalo, which is really convenient and on the way, to check out the birthplace of the Buffalo Wing! Anchor Bar was full of memorabilia along the walls, dating back to the 60s when the whole thing began. Their lobby is full of motorcycles and they sell T-shirts and other souvenirs.   Anchor Bar

Between the 4 of us, we shared 4 orders of wings – a double of hot, a single of spicy, a single medium, and a single mild. The hot is kind of like a “medium” at some major chains, like Buffalo Wild Wings or Home Team Grille. The sauces were pretty mild, and the “mild” was basically a fried chicken (but tasty!). We also ordered some pizza rolls (mozzarella wrapped with some thin pepperoni and fried in an egg roll…so good! M & Wings

Back to the Falls…we did a lot of walking, and while it was chilly, the temperature was great in the sunlight. We walked from our hotel down to the Falls Boulevard, which strolls along the water. The welcome center is big, but also somewhat of a tourist trap. They have several attractions, but we chose to only do the Maid of the Mist (totally recommend), the Daredevil Museum (overpriced, very very small/short), and the Behind the Falls (cool, but a long wait for a short experience).

We had a blast, but probably wouldn’t put it on our list of places to return until we have kids some day in the future. Great friends, great times!

 

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Sir James Galway!

M plays in our town’s community-student orchestra. He started playing in college, and continued playing after he graduated. He even has shiny pins for his years of service!

galway

This past Saturday, the orchestra hosted Sir James Galway and his wife for a concert. The UMW-CSO played the first half; then they broke into a smaller group and played with Galway for the second half. I personally wasn’t familiar with Galway, but it was a good show and great music (as always!).

I never figured I’d wind up with a band geek, but it’s been a great experience. The UMW-CSO has traveled around the world and I’ve gotten to go along with them. We’ve been to Europe on two trips, playing in churches from the 1400s in tiny towns in rural France and sightseeing along the way. It’s an amazing group to be part of, and I am so proud of M for being in it!