* SUNLITE POOL - Coney Island's swimming pool, originally built in 1925, has the distinction of being the world's largest flat-surfaced, recirculating pool. Unfortunately, The Professor's favorite pastime on visits is to let his swimming noodle fill with water and then blow into one end, shooting his mother and Uncle Chester in the face. More information about Sunlite Pool can be found on Coney's site here.
RIDE THE DUCKS - NEWPORT - This was a big hit last year and Foghorn desperately wanted to do the amphibious vehicle tour again. Grandma came along with us this time and enjoyed the trip, although she was wishing the tour guide would shut his mouth for two seconds so she could just look. This was followed up by a visit to Newport on the Levee's Fun Zone. The latter was less successful, partly due to the intense sun that was beating down on big vinyl inflatable slides and burning legs as kids descended. For the money I was also ticked that there were only two employees, leaving parents to run the mechanical bull themselves, which I suspect their insurance company would consider an absolute no-no. More information can be found on the Ducks' website here.
SKY GALLEY RESTAURANT/LUNKEN AIRPORT - Before the Greater Cincinnati Airport was built in Northern Kentucky, Lunken Airport was the landing spot for the city's air travel. (The Beatles landed here for their concert in 1964.) The airport building has a wonderful art-deco look and now houses, among other things, the Sky Galley Restaurant. The food is tasty but basic (club sandwiches, burgers, etc.). The real draw is the view of the runway, where you can see small aircraft depart and land. Down the road is the Lunken Playfield, a city park that has a long bike/jogging trail, tennis courts, golf, mini golf, and playground. The Inmates insisted the playground had to be on the bucket list and then they did almost nothing when we got there. The Professor sat in a swing, staring into space, and Foghorn sat in Grandma's lap, interrupting our conversations. I'm willing to concede that they've gotten too old for the playground; they insist it's tradition and they're going to go...even if they don't enjoy themselves once they get there.
|"I wanna get my picture taken|
with Dad" -- Foghorn
KING'S ISLAND AT NIGHT - While diurnal excursions are common, we usually only make it to the park at night once a year. (We ended up squeezing a second trip in last night, a rarity.) The park is usually crowded, so The Professor and I are mainly interested in one thing -- The Beast. This classic coaster is still, for my money, the best thrill in the park and is popular with coaster enthusiasts across the country. It races through woods at speeds nearly 65 mph. Feels fast during the day. Feels like flying at night as you race through near complete darkness with the trees flying by. While we stood in long lines for the thrill, Uncle Chester and Foghorn got Icees and took in the Peanuts-themed lights display. It is my understanding that Foghorn puts on quite a dancing show (and one point swinging from a pole, heaven help me).
|This is the look of someone who just got a |
TOTTER'S OTTERVILLE - Another activity that my kids have sadly outgrown. The Professor wanted no part of this trip, but Foghorn insisted on going. Otterville is perfect for preschool age kids, with various indoor pretend-play areas. You can play vet, have a puppet show, do ballet, be a mail carrier, work at a grocery store, do arts and crafts, and take care of dolls. Outdoors is a pond full of plastic fish, a sandbox, playground equipment, and a water area. Foghorn did a little fishing and put on a puppet show (which was mildly obscene) before deciding she was ready to go. She insists she wants to return, but at 9 years old she's really beyond the target age group.
* SOAK CITY AT KING'S ISLAND - Their newly revamped water park was not a hit with The Professor. Most of the area remained unchanged, but among the changes was a complete overhaul of the lazy river. Instead of a peaceful float around a meandering stream, it is full of waterfalls, spraying hoses, and guns on bridges that spectators can use to blast you as you float by. The Professor was furious and we didn't return all summer. We managed a second trip last week and he was still ranting over the ruined lazy river. He does, however, enjoy the new wave pool, which is large, has big waves, and allows inner tubes. We both stayed in so long we got seasick.
The Professor paid his monthly visit to the chiropractor this past week and was asked what his favorite thing was that he had done this summer. The Professor thought a minute and then said, "I don't know. We didn't really do very much." Sigh...