MAY 10, 2017 – NIAGARA and BUFFALO part one

It has been unseasonable cool and wet for the last couple of weeks, but today the forecast is for sun and slightly warmer – 13 Celsius. To celebrate we are heading to Niagara Falls via Buffalo and the Erie Canal/Lake Ontario area.


Why do I always pick the wrong line-up!!??!! It doesn’t matter if its supermarkets or border crossings – I always pick the slow line! Realistically, my line only took 15 minutes to clear, so it wasn’t really bad.

Our first stop in Buffalo is Wilkeson Pointe Park. Even with the address in hand, we drove past the spot twice without spotting these whirligigs – they are out on the point, a fair ways from the road. I’m not sure these actually fill our criteria – just how large are whirligigs normally? By children’s toy or garden decor standards though, these are HUGE. They are also amazing to watch. My wife isn’t sure they are art in the traditional sense, but they are certainly a marvel of engineering.

Location: Wilkeson Pointe Park, 225 Fuhrmann Boulevard

The City of Buffalo has, no surprise, a lot of buffalo (or bison) statues sprinkled liberally throughout the city, like these ones near the Harborcenter. Unfortunately there is never any street parking near these items, so we are forced into renegade behavior – stopping with our emergency flashers on, parking in tow-away zones, ditching the car in Reserved for the President spots – it’s like a game of roulette. So far we have gotten away with it, but my eye-rolling wife says future tickets are inevitable, and jail isn’t out of the question! And all for a picture of buffalo that are only life sized!


Location: Harborcenter, Main and Scott Sts

This is billed as the World’s Largest Six Pack, but they aren’t fooling me – they are just painted silos – and not the best I’ve seen. Good view from 253 Ohio St, though they are located on Ganson St.


I LOVED the beer keg tap at the Pearl Street Grill and Brewery! I think the wife plans these trips so I arrive at pubs WAY to early to sample the wares.


Location: 76 Pearl St, Buffalo

The gardens around the Roswell Cancer Center were absolutely spectacular, so it seemed a bit churlish to only take a picture of this big buffalo nickle (did it anyway!)


Location: 614 Elm St, Buffalo

Our next stop was a Martin Luther King Jr. memorial – very nice, with some of his best quotes from the I Have a Dream speech engraved in the sidewalk. I’m not really sure this is much of a likeness of MLK Jr – still a nice monument, though.


Location: 1131 Fillmore Ave, Martin Luther King Jr Park, Buffalo

We had to stop and take a picture of this buffalo – he isn’t bigger than life, but the smile is hilarious. Sponsored by Evolution Dental as part of a Community Art Project


Location: Evolution Dental Science, 235 Aero Dr, Buffalo



As we headed out of Buffalo, we stopped in Williamsville to get a shot of this butcher. Another sign on the store said Roast Beef on Weck. What is this, I asked myself, plus “Why is it too early to have lunch?” Turns out Roast Beef on Weck is “A beef on weck (also known as beef on wick) is a sandwich found primarily in Western New York. It is made with roast beef on a kummelweck roll. The meat on the sandwich is traditionally served rare, thin cut, with the top bun getting a dip au jus and spread with horseradish.” MMMMMM!!!!


So what was this nonsense about cucumber on the sign?


Location: Charlie the Butcher, 1065 Wehrle Dr, Williamsville



I’m a sucker for an ice cream cone. This location had a tangerine and vanilla twist with chocolate dip!  Oh Yeah – there was a big cone on the roof, too.


Location: Dave’s Ice Cream, 3872 W Main Street Rd, Batavia

What we really came to Batavia for was this set of armour. We have a picture of a similar set from a different location (Canadaigua, NY) earlier in the blog posts, but this one is definitely in better nick.


Location: 653 Ellicott St, Batavia

Across the street, we spotted this Incidental Sighting (unplanned.) Chapin Mfg has been in business for 125 years, manufacturing air and hand sprayers for spraying a variety of liquids, from pesticides to cleaning solutions. I thought this find was amazing, til my research showed it is actually a fountain! Darn – we missed the water!


Location:  700 Ellicott St, Batavia


This is the point where we realize we are falling behind our estimated time. Do we go to East Bethany to look for a roadside dragon, or try to get back on schedule? DRAGON IT IS!!!!


So glad we chose dragon – it’s awesome! Here I am doing my Father of Dragons imitation.


There was also a bonus horse around the corner – not quite the same workmanship though.


Location: – Emerald Models – 10187 Transit Rd, East Bethany



Big onion! The mural on the wall says it all!


Location: 6550 Transit Rd, Elba



It is now definitely past lunch time (ignore the giant ice cream, the coffees and the miniature pecan pie I ate earlier!) So we were glad to stop by the big apple and have a picnic. Not the biggest or the best apple, but in a nice park on the side of the Erie Canal.


Location: Lions Park, 108 Glenwood Ave, Medina


From here we took a scenic drive along the Lake Ontario shore – no Big Things, but the apple trees were in full bloom and absolutely lovely.


We were underwhelmed by the Lewiston Art Park, so thankfully the spider at the public library was a winner.


Location: Lewiston Public Library, 5 South 8th St, Lewiston



After a little sight seeing along the Niagara River, we ended up in North Tonawanda. This large Seabee is part of a WWII memorial. Again, though, there was no where to park. Seems like bad planning – should have had some Seabees design it!


Location: 682 River Rd, North Tonawanda



It’s not as big as a Blue Whale, but it’s such a fixture in the area we decided to include this anyway.

Location: Old Man River, 375 Niagara St, Tonawanda

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