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Showing posts with label Places to Eat. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Places to Eat. Show all posts

Saturday 20 April 2024

Total Solar Eclipse 2024

Eclipse Glasses.

Location: Crystal Beach, Ontario, Canada
Address: 89 Ridge Rd S  
Date: April 2024
Website: visitniagaracanada.com

  April 8, 2024 saw a total solar eclipse occur in parts of southern Ontario. A total solar eclipse is caused by the moon passing directly in front of the sun and blocking the sun from view. This was the first total solar eclipse to be visible in Ontario since February 26, 1979.  In order to view a solar eclipse safely you need special glasses. We had our glasses ready and then we chose our destination of Crystal Beach in the Fort Erie area. Crystal Beach was one of the places that was getting close to totality of the eclipse. As you move away from the line of totality you will experience less darkness and be able to see less of the show. Millions of people would be on the move in order to witness this phenomenon. This is how our adventure played out.

Morning Sky On Day Of Solar Eclipse.

  The early morning sky was coloured with bands of orange, red and purple. There was more cloud cover than we had hoped. Unfortunatey, any sort of lunar event seems to draw in the clouds and storms. We set off on our journey, optimistic that things would clear up as the day progressed.

Third Street Louth Ontario.

 We started out early in the day to avoid traffic. As we headed along the Queen Elizabeth Way near St. Catherines we decided to exit the highway and explore the side roads. We turned south onto Third Street. Our GPS said to turn on Third Street Louth.  We thought the GPS had a typo or speech impediment, but it turns out that Louth is the area. With so many First, Second and Third Streets in the surrounding farmlands they had added the area name to the end. Louth was named after a county in Ireland. We continued our journey Louth.

Tin Man Effingham
    This tin man was standing on Effingham Street. Sometimes people wear tinfoil hats to protect from harmful electromagnetic waves or alien mind reading. We are not sure what effect a solar eclipse would have on this tin man. We do know that we would not stand beside him in a thunderstorm.

Comfort Maple Niagara Conservation Area.

  We stopped into a Niagara Conservation area to visit the Comfort Maple. This tree is over 500 years old and is being preserved. It is called the Comfort Maple not because of how it makes people feel, but because the farm land used to belong to the Comfort family.

Comfort Maple Niagara Conservation Area.

    The tree is so old that there are ropes used to help support its branches. Hang in there Comfort Maple and enjoy the eclipse. We headed on towards Crystal Beach.

Beachcombers Crystal Beach
 There is a large group of seniors living in Crystal Beach as many people retire here or own cottages.  This happy gang is from the Beachcombers Seniors Centre.

Sweet E's Crystal Beach
  We had arrived well ahead of the crowds and had plenty of time before the moon and the sun put on their performance. We parked our car at Crystal Ridge Park and took a walk towards the northern part of town. We stopped into Sweet E's Bakery and had coffee and scones. We also chatted with some locals about the upcoming eclipse.

Friendship Trail.

  After our coffee break we took a walk along the Friendship Trail. The Friendship Trail is a biking/walking pathway built where the train tracks used to be. The trail starts well before Crystal Beach and goes all the way to Old Fort Erie. We timed our walk in order to be back for the opening of Brimstone.

Brimstone Crystal Beach.

Brimstone is a brewery and special events space. It is also a restaurant/bar that seems to be built into and around a former church. We came here in order to have something to eat before the eclipse started.  The waitress informed us that she had selected an eclispe themed playlist in honour of the days big event. We didn't hear any Bonnie Tyler while we were there, but did hear several moon themed songs such as Echo & The Bunnymen's The Killing Moon.

Brimstone Brews On Site In Crystal Beach.

   Brimstone is usually not open on Mondays, but opened especially for us eclipse seekers. They brew several of their own beers on site. We had a Purple Lizard and a Sinister Minister which is one of their beer selections
Brimstone Hail Mary Ale
     They also have other ales such as the Hail Mary Ale. After enjoying our meal and beverages we headed back down to where we had parked to see if any crowds had gathered.
Crystal Ridge Park Crystal Beach Pre-Eclipse
    More people had arrived for the event but we had chosen a good spot. We are sure it was crowded down at the water's edge. Crystal Beach sits on the northeast side of Lake Erie.
Deer Crystal Ridge Park.
    A pair of deer had walked out into the park to graze. A few minutes later something spooked them and they both bounded away into the bushes.
Sun Peeks Through Clouds Crystal Ridge Park.
    The eclipse was slowly approaching. It would take the moon about an hour to slowly cover the sun.  Then there would be about 4 minutes of darkness until the moon would slowly reveal the sun once more.
Solar Eclipse Through Eclipse Glasses.
    We looked through our special glasses just to be safe as the eclipse started. Everything looked orange and we could see the sun through the clouds. We took this photo through the lens of the glasses. The eclipse had begun as the moon crept over the edge of the sun.
Solar Eclipse Halfway Crystal Beach
    More and more of the sun was covered. We realized that with so much cloud cover we didn't need the special glasses to protect our eyes or take photos.
Robin Crystal Ridge Park.
    The robins were singing in the trees. They didn't seem confused and sang throughout the eclipse, even in the total darkness. Spring is their season after all.
Darkness from Total solar eclipse.
    Then it happened. The sky went from day to night in about a minute. A cool breeze swept in and we were in the totality of the eclipse. Almost 4 minutes later we went from night to day again. The clouds robbed us of seeing the corona of the sun. We still enjoyed our day in Crystal Beach and viewing the spectacle of the eclipse with others. Next, we had the pleasure of many hours driving back home in traffic.

Map of Our World 

Crystal Ridge Park

Post # 334

Monday 20 November 2023

Original Tim Hortons Store

The Original Tim Hortons Store.

Location:  Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Address:  65 Ottawa St. N
Date: October 2023
Website: www.timhortons.ca

  Miles Gilbert "Tim" Horton was born in Ontario in 1930.  He was signed as a Toronto Maple Leaf hockey player in 1949. He played in the National Hockey League for 22 years and won 4 Stanley Cups with the Toronto Maple Leafs.  He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1977. For Canadian coffee and donut fans, he also started the Tim Hortons donut store chain.

Old Tim Hortons Signage.

  The very first Tim Horton Donuts opened on May 17, 1964 on Ottawa Street North in Hamilton, Ontario.  There are now over 3,500 Tim Hortons across Canada and thousands more around the world.  The very first store is still in operation and now houses a small museum on its second floor. 
Tim Hortons Counter From the 60s.

      There is a replica of a 1960s style counter as it would have appeared in a Tim Hortons.

Tim Hortons 1960s Donut Prices.
    A sign behind the counter lets you know that a dozen donuts is only $1.25. If that price is too steep for you, the day olds are half price.

Tim Hortons 1960s Style Cake Display Case.
    Another display case featured cakes and advertised that you can get a slice of pie and a coffee for $1.49. That's a mighty nice pie slice.

Butterfly Donuts Tim Hortons.

  The display case was full of donuts such as the butterfly donuts (above). We were not sure if these donuts had been around since the 1960s and wouldn't pay the 15 cents to find out anyways.
Tim Horton Early Uniform.
Tim Horton Uniforms.

    Other display cases had some uniforms worn by Tim Hortons staff through the years.
Remembering Tim Horton.

    Tim Horton played for 4 different teams in his NHL career but is best known for wearing the Toronto Maple Leafs uniform.

Tim Hortons Statue Outside The First Store.

   A statue of Tim Horton stands on the street outside of the first store. Tim Horton died in 1974 and his business partner Ron Joyce became sole owner of the company.

Tim Horton Buffalo Statue.

      In Buffalo, New York, USA there is another statue of Tim Horton.  He played with the Buffalo Sabres from 1972 until his death in 1974. Tim Horton crashed his car travelling alone from Toronto to Buffalo after a hockey game. It wouldn't be until 1985 when the first US Tim Hortons opened in Amherst, New York.

Tim Horton Grave.

    Tim Horton and his wife are buried in York Cemetery in North York which is part of Toronto, Ontario.

Tim Horton Number 7. Legends Row Toronto.

   While in Toronto you can see another statue of Tim Horton in Legends Row. Legends Row is located outside of the Scotiabank Arena and honours Toronto Maple Leaf greats.

Tim Horton Foundation Camps

    Tim Horton had started a Children's Camp to help children from underpriviledged families. There were dishes in the display cases showing some of the camps.

Tim Horton Merchandise.

  The museum had various glasses, mugs, donut bags and Timbit merchandise. The Timbit was introduced at Tim Hortons in 1976.

Tim Horton Classic Merchandise.

   Timbits are a donut ball or donut hole. Some people believe they are made by punching out the centre of round donuts. As you can see at the top of this display case is a Timbit roller designed to specially cut out the ball shape from a sheet of dough.

Tim Biebs.

    Tim Hortons collaborated once with Canadian pop star Justin Bieber where he chose his favourite styles of Timbits.

Roll Up The Rim Cups.

      Tim Hortons is also known for its successful Roll Up The Rim contest. It was started in 1986 and if you rolled up the rim of your coffee cup you could win food prizes or even a car. The cup in the top left corner was the earliest on display. It was from the contest held in 1991. 

Tim Hortons Mugs.

     If you get the chance you should visit the Tim Hortons in Hamilton for a little Canadian history.  This is one museum where you can have food and drink while you browse the exhibits. By food and drink we mean coffee and doughnuts!

Map of Our World
Tim Hortons First Store & Museum

Post # 329

Monday 20 February 2023

The Old Tavern Of Psaras

View Of The Athens Plaka Neighbourhood From The Acropolis 

Location: Athens, Greece
Address: Erotokritou 16, Plaka
Date: February 2023
Website: psaras-taverna.gr

    The Plaka is one of the oldest neighbourhoods in Athens, Greece.  It spreads out below the Acropolis from the North-East side like a maze.  We are sure that even right now, many a tourist is lost and trying to find their way through the Plaka.  If you are trying to drive a rental car and check into your hotel the streets of the Plaka can be quite frustrating.  The streets are narrow and winding and many are pedestrian only. If you are ready to take an evening stroll looking for great food and some souvenirs then the Plaka can be full of surprises.

Choragic Monument Of Lysicrates In Plaka Athens Greece.

      Around any corner could be a church or a monument. The Choragic Monument of Lysicrates above, dates from 334 BC and sits in a little square.

Plaka Streets Athens.

   In Plaka some streets are bustling and some appear deserted.  There is always the chance that coming around the corner is a bike, a taxi or a crowd of people.  We worked our way through the streets in order to find a special place for dinner.

View From The Acropolis Over Plaka Towards Lycabettus Hill.

  From the Acropolis you can look down on the red rooftops of the oldest buildings in Plaka.  Off in the distance is the highest point in Athens, Lycabettus Hill.  Near the front of the photo is Psaras Taverna which is the oldest continually operating tavern in all of Athens.

Close-Up View Of Psaras Taverna From The Acropoliis.

   Just in case you couldn't locate the restaurant in the previous photo, here is a close up view.  Now you should be able to find it. Using an aerial view is much easier than finding the restaurant back down on the ground.

Psaras Taverna In Plaka Athens.

    Psaras means fisherman in Greek so the name of the restaurant in English is the Old Fisherman's Tavern.  The restaurant has been operating since 1898.

Psaras Tavern Chairs And Tables Spread Down The Stairs.
     The restaurant has taken over several buildings and all of the stairs in the area.
Psaras Taverna Oldest Building.

     We were seated outside in a corner next to a heat lamp to keep us warm.  It was rather cool in Athens that week and it did actually snow only two days later. We appreciated being tucked in to enjoy our meal and the atmosphere.  We had a mushroom soup and a chicken gyro dinner.

   Psaras Tavern Tables On Stairs Athens.

   As we were finishing up our coffee we heard a woman speaking to the matre d'.  "Reservation for a rather large goup of kidney doctors please".  We took care of our bill and readied ourselves for the streets of Plaka.  Sure enough a line of people appeared from one of the walkways and snaked past us and up to an upper terrace seating area.  We didn't stay to count, but 165 sounds about right.

The Acroplis From The Plaka Athens.
    As we made our way back through the streets of the Plaka we looked up at the Acropolis.  We would be back again in the Plaka the next day and end up dining at Diogenis (on the right in the photo above).  The Plaka is a great place to spend a day getting lost and seeing what you can find.

Map of Our World
Psaras Taverna , Diogenis
Choragic Monument Of Lysicrates
Post # 320