Archive for August 1st, 2010

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Hey, Look! It’s a Blog Post…

August 1, 2010

…that once again, has little to nothing to do with hockey. Consider yourself warned.

Last weekend, I drove up to Frankenmuth Michigan for a long summer weekend. I’m not a fan of taking full week vacations from the office. I do my one week of winter vacation a year, but prefer to take long weekends throughout the year. It’s just easier to get back into the groove and results in less chaos on my desk. But I digress.

The fastest way to get to Michigan is generally to cut through Canada. All was well and good until we hit the Blue Water Bridge at Sarnia. There, due to construction on the Canadian side, and Chatty Christopher the Border Patrolman on the US side, we waited for over an hour-and-fifteen minutes to cross back into the US. So what else does one do when one is stuck on a bridge? Take pictures, of course!

A lighthouse on the US side of the border.

This boat was well on its way into Lake Huron by the time we made it through customs.

At one point, the front half of the car was in the US, and the back in Canada.

One of the highlights of Frankenmuth is a visit to Bronner’s CHRISTmas Wonderland, which is one of the largest Christmas related stores in the world. In addition to racks and racks of ornaments and other holiday related bric-a-brac, the store contains many holiday related displays in the rafters. You never quite know what you’re going to see.

For instance, I saw a Goose.

HONK! HONK! When’s hockey season start? HONK!

And a penguin. He looks charmingly like Sid, right?

Making goodies. My goodies are much better than Ovie’s goodies, right?

Sadly, there was no frog around to wish me a Hoppy New Year.

The town of Frankenmuth itself is set up to emphasize the area’s German roots. All of the buildings in town are encouraged to utilize a German/Bavarian style when remodeling building exteriors. The main hotel in town, the Bavarian Inn, looks like a German village from the front and a traditional hotel from the rear.

Hotel, front view.

Hotel, rear view. The yellow portion on the right is one of the hotel’s five pools. (Thankfully, it’s the adults only pool. No snot nosed, bratty children need apply.)

There was a softball tournament staying at the hotel while we were there. It’s all fun and games until a group of brats runs down the hallway at 11pm, knocking on every door and hollering. It was quite fun to watch one of the hooligans parents get (politely) reemed out in the lobby the next morning by the hotel staff. Outside of the children, the hotel is pretty neat to stay in. There’s a full arcade & game room that has skeeball lanes. I love playing skeeball, but after a marathon skeeball session, my arm & shoulder were jelly.

The hotel is connected to town via a covered wooden bridge.

The bridge crosses the Cass River, which only runs about 6-7 feet deep.

This chicken made of flowers is located outside Zehnders Restaurant, which is known for its family style chicken dinners. In fact, Zehnders has been ranked as the #1 restaurant in the US in terms of meals served. (And the chicken is quite delicious.)

While we were in town, there was a Revolutionary War re-enactment going on. I’m not sure what was more entertaining: the battle itself, or the group of Canadians next to me trying to figure out what was going on. I think they were tripped up when the “Highlanders” showed up, since they were fighting on both sides of the battle. (Sadly, none of the Highlanders looked like Jamie Fraser, so that was a bit of a letdown, LOL.) I did take pictures at the re-enactment, but since they were of people I didn’t know, I’m not going to post them.

Now that my vacation time is over (and its officially August), it seems like all the signs pointing to the end of summer are hitting me full on in the face. Bills training camp has started, the Erie County Fair starts in 10 days, and Labor Day is a short month away. Which all means that hockey season is right around the corner. Yay!

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