Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Day 296 Try a Day at Kennywood Park-Rides- Memories-A “Super-cali -fragi-listic” Day

At an amusement park you hear the crackling and rumbling roar of roller coasters, piped organ music of the Merry-go- round and a prevalent  hum of screams and laughter.  One of my blog inspiration books, Everything I Need to Know I Learned From a (Disney) Little Golden Book reminds us that life can be a “super-cali-fragi-listic new day !”.  That is just what you can get at an amusement park that screams of fun or fear- depending on your age and the ride- but fear is part of the fun! Kennywood Park with 6 coasters and more, not only gives you  a riding thrill but also a nostalgic stroll as it elicits memories for many Pittsburghers from their childhood, teen years, and times with their children.

Similar to zoo visits (Day 294 ), when our kids are grown we might forget to make a “childless”  Kennywood day.  It’s been years since I ventured to Kennywood but this time there was no one to keep entertained, no stress about winning a stuffed animal (which was always a big deal since I have no game skills) and no end of the day kid meltdown.  You can have a day where you get to be the kid and play, and where fond  memories surface at every turn.

The Racer-always fun to heckle the opposite train

The Thunderbolt- road it 4 times

I have always  been a roller coaster girl and avoid spinning attractions  since even a car ride can elicit my  motion sickness.  The park  has  three vintage (1920’s) wooden coasters, the Jackrabbit, Racer, and Thunderbolt.  The Jackrabbit was the first “big” coaster that my son was tall enough to ride. Our belly butterflies  stemming from the 70 foot double dip always made us run back for more. The  Racer, the only coaster in the US  with one continuous  track,  produced heckling as my son and I rode on opposite trains and competed to  win.  I remembered riding the rebuilt Thunderbolt that was voted the number one coaster by the New York Times in the  l970’s. Back then, it seemed like the fastest thing around.

The Phantoms Revenge  produced anticipatory  fear during the slow rhythmic clicks climbing  straight up with a view of the entire park before it dropped the famous 200 plus feet. On my first ride  I shut my eyes  but on the second, my hands were up and  yes, I screamed both times.  The park has two more  coaster “thrillers”, The Terminator, an indoor dark twister and The Ski Rocket, that takes to you from 0-50 mph in 3 seconds.

I am not sure if it was the present thrill of these coasters or my memories that fueled my youthful enthusiasm to ride.  My friend and I raced hand in hand  from coaster to coaster, riding with our hands up,  laughing and occasionally screaming.     

Kennywood has plenty of spinning rides for those vertigo lovers.  I enjoyed watching the screamers on the Aero (360 degree spinning arrow) and the Black Widow (huge round circle that  also spins 360 degrees) safely from the ground holding my ice cream.

There is always a fantastic show

The park still offers quality shows and there are  a barrage of event days still to come.  Some are just for adults like  Brew in the Park (September 22, 2018) and on Oldies Day (September 9th) 55+ get to ride for $9.99.  I remember Italian Day at the park was always a family affair where my grandma came and just held all our stuff. (see schedule here) 

As my friend and I walked through the park, we each pointed out the placement of retired rides and shared our stories. I have been told that I am a horrible driver which seems to work to my advantage on my favorite ride, the  Bumper Cars. The night ended with a ride on the  peaceful and  beautiful classic Merry-go-round as we made our way toward the park exit.

My day always seems to end with a Merry-go-round ride

The park continues to add rides and evolve with Thomas Town just opening but it also keeps its classic charm with walk through attractions like  Noah's Ark that has been around in some form since 1936.  Kennywood still thrills but more importantly, it brings us back to our past.   A day at Kennywood encourages you to play, propelling you into your own personal  “Super-cali -fragi-listic” Day!

Spiritual Reflection
You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore. ( Psalm 16:11)

Other Sources

Monday, August 13, 2018

Day 295-Visit the Zoo-Summer Safari (food music cocktails)-A Magical Party in the Wild

One of my blog inspiration books, Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a (Disney) Little Golden Book, reminds us that the “world is full of magical places”.  When my son was a toddler the  Pittsburgh Zoo was a  magical place where we  could have a weekly  encounter with elephants, lions, bears, and turtles (these were my son’s favorite animals ). A zoo visit educates, entertains, and reminds us that we share this word with many other unique species.

Unfortunately, we sometimes forget to explore the animal kingdom as we once did when our children become adults and leave the family nest.  The Pittsburgh Zoo’s annual benefit event, Summer Safari, is an adult party that brings you back to experiencing the magic of  a lion’s roar, wobble of the penguins, and the vibrant shades of blues, yellows and pinks of the ocean world.  You can do all this while you hold a cocktail, sample delicious dishes from over 28 business, and listen to  live entertainment! 

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Day 294 Pittsburgh CLO -Thoroughly Modern Millie-Jazzy Tapping and Vaudeville Laughing

  Thoroughly Modern Millie  transports  you to  the NYC jazz age of the 1920’s where skirts were shorter, hair was bobbed, flappers were dancing  the Charleston, and  everyone was living it up during prohibition. This musical has a  nostalgic vibe with wonderfully choreographed  jazzy tap numbers and  a vaudeville comedy thread. Although the overall story is a bit simple, it's a feel good musical with a fantastic cast that will have you laughing and enjoying  the energetic  rhythms of high speed stepping.

Friday, August 3, 2018

Day 293 Wine & Art Crawl- Explore A Childhood Local Area-Revitalized Bellevue Borough: A Mixture of Old and New

Pittsburgh is unique with its cluster of boroughs surrounding the city, many of which have transformed into hubs for new businesses giving these areas a stronger pulse. I grew up near a little town called Bellevue which is just 5 miles north of Pittsburgh.  I have not explored my childhood neighborhood in over 10 years.  Bellevue recently hosted  an annual  Wine and Art Crawlclosing  the main street, Lincoln Ave, for wine tasting, food, music and art.  I discovered a main street that was revitalized  with new businesses but also one that retained the historical establishments  of my past, resulting in a blended charm.

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Day 292 Underwater Adventure-Dive and Snorkel --Lauderdale- By- the -Sea

I am more of a land dweller enjoying the ocean from my comfy chair on the beach.  The mystery of the underwater ocean world with its’ burst of color from the variety of fish and coral carries some intrigue.    My intrigue however, has only led me to stand safely on the ground peering into an aquarium. During my recent venture to the quaint area of  Lauderdale- by- the -Sea  (see Days - 289, 290),  I thought that it was time to “dive in” to an underwater adventure of this area’s off coast  coral  reefs  and a nearby ship wreck (SS Copenhagen) .

Friday, July 20, 2018

Day 291- Pittsburgh CLO Brigadoon- A Classic Musical with A Ballet/Opera Flair - Find Love, Find Paradise

Brigadoon is a classic musical about two American gentlemen on vacation in Scotland who discover a mythical Scottish village that appears only for a day every 100 years!  During their exploration, Tommy finds love but love in this mysterious world has a price. I remember watching the movie Briagdoon as a child  and being mesmerized by Gene Kelly’s dancing and the dreamlike scenes of  the Scottish Highlands.  This CLO production should be an adventurous tale of dance and song about finding love and finding paradise. 

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Day 290 A Florida Off Season Summer Excursion-Lauderdale by the Sea (LBTS)/Perfect Mature Playground

You would think that a southern Florida vacation would be unbearable making you feel like a dripping candle in the sun.  My recent  discovery  of  a quaint area to relax, Lauderdale by the Sea, and a  boutique hotel located  on the beach, The Plunge Beach Hotel, changed my perspective. LBTS, just 7 miles north of Fort Lauderdale, is a perfect mature playground where you can relax, eat well, and  snorkel or dive on it’s off  shore coral reefs  and a  nearby ship wreck (SS Copenhagen). The town square invites you to rest in a rainbow colored Adirondack chair and is lined with charming restaurants that do not disappoint the taste buds. Everything in this playground is within walking distance in a 2.5 mile stretch! 

Friday, June 22, 2018

Day 289-Lauderdale by the Sea at the Plunge Beach Hotel- Gems to “Plunge” into a Beach Getaway

As the summer commences there is nothing better than a quick  beach  getaway that does not break your  piggy bank.  From Pittsburgh there are reasonable and sometimes down right cheap flights to Fort Lauderdale.  When I think of Fort Lauderdale, I have flashbacks of my college crazy spring break days but  I recently discovered a quaint area to relax, Lauderdale by the Sea, just 7 miles north of Fort Lauderdale and a great boutique hotel located  on the beach, The Plunge Beach Hotel. This is a great combo that lets you  literally “Plunge” into it all!

Thursday, June 21, 2018

Day 288 Immersive Encounter-The Clearing-Stay Curious-Bricolage Theater

In this quest for new things I came across Bricolage Theater which is synonymous with adventures theater (see Days 256- Midnight Radio and 279- WordPlay). The Clearing is a personal immersive theater experience where you are part of the story. My Blog inspiration book, Everything I Need to Know I Learned From a Little Golden Book" recommends that we “Stay Curious” so I was ready to explore my first  immersive encounter (IE)  and venture into The Clearing!

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Day 287 -On Your Feet, Musical- Dance in Your Seat-Pittsburgh CLO -Benadum Theater

As an 80’s girl, I loved dancing to the beat of Emilio and Gloria Estefan. That Cuban rhythm just makes you want to move! The musical, On Your Feet  tells how this pair overcame adversity to land “on their feet” in the music business.  This show will have you either on your feet or like me, dancing in your seat but it  also wonderfully celebrates Cuban Americans.