And the fun goes on ...
We arrived in Niagara Falls on Wednesday, 11 June, and checked into our hotel, the Courtyard Marriott. That evening we dined at Kelsey's, on the 12th at Antica, 13th at the Keg. For the golfers, reservations were made at the Hunters Point and Whirlpool golf courses on the 12th and 13th. Departure was on Saturday, 14 June.
The weather was not cooperative! Our drive from Ottawa took close to 8 hours due to rain falling in sheets on the windshield, obliterating the view - traffic actually stopped several times on Hwy 401. On arrival in Niagara Falls the severe downpours and thunderstorms continued throughout the region. The intrepid golfers got soaked on both days. Also for those of us not golfing (Garry included due to knee problems), sightseeing was almost a washout.
Regardless, on the Thursday I had a wonderful time escorting four of our ladies, namely Judy S., Judi E., Sue P., and Janet W. to Niagara-on-the-Lake to see a Shaw performance at the Court House Theatre, "The Charity That Began At Home". Prior to the show we investigated a restaurant just off the theatre parking lot called the Grill on King. We decided to have our lunch there after viewing the interior and being greeted by the friendly, courteous staff and olfactory teases! The food was excellent and we'd strongly recommend it to anyone visiting Niagara-on-the-Lake! As for the play, it was interesting but just seemed too stretched out, especially near the end. Also, for us, the ending itself was a disappointment. In retrospect, this was probably due to the fact that the play was written at the turn of the century when mores were decidedly different. In any case, the acting was superb.
On Friday Judy and I stopped at a winery and, as the pouring rain continued, Judy had to tip toe through the puddles to reach the entrance. I stayed in the car and took the following picture through the windshield. As can be seen, it was somewhat akin to an underwater photo - interesting though . Surprisingly, a few minutes later, the rain had stopped. As we left, we could see the makings of a funnel-shaped cloud off to the left. Needless to say we made a very rapid departure!!! A later weather report confirmed a tornado in the area.
In spite of the bad weather, Judy and I did manage to visit the Strewn Winery and Cooking School, one of our favourites. This photo at the entrance to the dining room indicates how few visitors managed to get there! Obviously, as a result, we got excellent service, and a pleasant, quiet dining experience .
We both had light lunches by Strewn standards, Doesn't Judy's repas look inviting?
As does my delicious, calorie-free dessert (according to the server)!
A very special thanks to Keith and Al for making such superb arrangements yet again!!! Well done!!!
The Poker Club gang would congregate at Al and Joyce's suite both after Golf/Touring, and after dinner.
As usual, the post-golf discussions involved exaggerations and weather excuses, but this year they were somewhat justified.
New electronics were admired but sadly proved rather difficult to utilize because of language problems!
As usual, the ladies discussed ... whatever ladies discuss.
The following photos were taken at the restaurants.
Below, Judy reads the menu to Keith, who obviously is overwhelmed with the possibilities!
Marsh tells a joke which, evidently, only Keith understands!
Steve has problems with the menu as it's not in French.
Smiles Are Us!!!
I love being with my "forever" friends!
"OK, I give up! Who ordered what???"
Ann: "You ate my bread!!!" Judy: "It was delicious!"
This was MY (Steph) meal. Tasty, but almost too much of a good thing.
Dave ponders whether to eat his huge steak ... or take it home ... or ride it.
Dave gets his camera ready, and Steve prepares the anxious audience for the results.
The tension is palpable ...
And increasing exponentially!
The ladies' winner is... Fran !!!
And the men's... Keith !!!
Also, Elvis finally gets a caring home at the Hays'!
Our thanks to all concerned for making this year's outing again so successful!
Following our PC get-together, Judy and I drove to Mississauga to stay with the MacLeods in their lovely condo with the gorgeous 11th floor view . The plan, which has become a yearly affair, was to attend the Sunday matinee at the Shaw Festival in Niagara-on-the-Lake after a picnic in the park.
Just for fun, Judy arranged a "blind" wine-tasting, using examples of our hosts' favourite blend of white - Riesling Gewurztraminer. Opinions varied on description, country of origin, winery, and of course, preference. Keith had to be funny and suggest that one of the wines was from North Korea !?! Here are some photos of the wines, and the tasters.
Our hosts also feted us with a fresh lobster dinner with all the trimmings!!!
Then on Sunday, the scrumptious picnic in the park.
Then the play at the Festival Theatre, "The Philadelphia Story." Here are two photos from inside the theatre.
Finally, an excellent dinner at one of the MacLeods' favourite Restaurants, JJ's Japanese Thai.
Thanks Fran & Keith for yet again proving what great hosts and friends you are!!!
NIAGARA FALLS, June 2015
We arrived in Niagara Falls on Wednesday, 10th of June, and checked into our hotel, the Courtyard Marriott. That evening we dined at Kelsey's (Yuk!), on the 11th at Antica (Yummy!), 12th at the Keg (Scrumptious). For the golfers, reservations were made at two local golf courses for the 11th and 12th. Departure was on Saturday, 14th June.
Our drive from Ottawa took close to 8 hours due to traffic congestion. Just leaving Ottawa took over an hour because of serious road construction!!! And Toronto and roads south were their usual mayhem! Golfing weather on Thursday was acceptable, but I had already planned to golf just the Friday as my knee replacement recovery was still ongoing,. Of course then severe thunderstorms were predicted for Friday ... and actually occurred, but I decided not to waste my money and efforts getting soaked nor practice acting as a lightning rod so didn't partake in this suicide endeavor. Regardless some of our brave (or reckless) group did golf ... until the deluge began on the 16th hole!
Thursday I had a wonderful and exciting time escorting three of our ladies, namely Judy S., JanOz, and Janet W. to explore St.Catherines, and we certainly did! JanOz supplied the transport, and all the ladies contributed to the navigation which resulted in an in-depth tour of the city and environs. We were going to visit an art gallery but when finally arrived there was nothing to see as they were in the midst of changing the display! Soooo, we headed off to the Welland Canal to see if we could catch a ship going through the locks - and we did!!!
The following are some photos from our excursion:
JanOz's Precision Parking
A beautiful tribute to the Lincoln & Welland Regiment located in the museum adjacent to the canal.
I became part of the exhibit, but "Wanted"? By whom?
A ship passing through the canal. Not much clearance!
A very interesting visit well worth the initial wanderings.
Finally, Garry was supposed to host the ladies to lunch, but due to the vagaries of our trip, it was too late, soooo BIG Waffle Cones had to suffice!
Above are the 2015 Winners of the Poker Club Trophies, Janice & Steve.
Note: They also are the final 'Keepers of the Cups'.
To get the whole story regarding the cups' retirement click here.
As in the past few years, on the Saturday following the golf, Judy and I travelled to Mississauga to visit the MacLeods in their beautiful condo. Yet again, delicious lobster was on the menu that evening including lessons on how to get ALL the meat from even the legs! (I drew a line however on the multi-colour guts). Fran's breakfasts were of course gourmet as usual!
On the Sunday we travelled to Niagara-On-the-Lake to see a Broadway show, Sweet Charity, a musical with music by Cy Coleman, lyrics by Dorothy Fields and book by Neil Simon. Also in our plans was a lunch at local restaurant, The Grill on King Street, which we had visited and enjoyed last year. Well, we truly had an adventure as we were 90 degrees out in our directional approach to King and Queen streets so wandered around searching for the restaurant! But eventually and in time it all worked out. Both the show and meal were really great!!!
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