After a rather sleepless stop over in Rochester NY, we decided to pull up our bootstraps, buckle down the hatches and head to our friends in Sullivan OH, an hour southwest of Cleveland. At the time, we had no idea just how smart of a decision this was. Due to technical difficulties, our visit was extended by a couple days but thanks to Cindi and Bill, nothing dampened our vacation spirit!
Dennis drove all the way from MA to OH, so when he asked me to take over the wheel somewhere west of the OH border, I gladly obliged. Most of the roads to this point were long, long stretches of straight highway with little traffic so as a novice RV’er I figured even I could do this. Little did he know (…or did he?…) we were only about 15 miles outside the Cleveland city limits. After hours of silence, Betty (we named our GPS) starts screaming at me to prepare for a left exit, then a right exit, then a keep on the current road followed by a highway change. We went from 2 lanes to 4 lanes down to 3 lanes – traffic entering from every direction! I’m still not sure the real reason for Dennis’s sinister laugh – maybe he was nervous for me? Maybe because my knuckles were the same shade of white as my grandmother’s hair? Maybe it was my colorful commentary about each vehicle that came within 200 feet of us? Or maybe it was his relief that I was behind the wheel and not him?
Either way, we made it to Sullivan without a scratch and a promise that I’ll never have to do that again!
Central Ohio was more beautiful than I expected. Acres upon acres of rolling corn fields and dairy farms intertwined with Amish farms. It wasn’t uncommon to see horse and buggie traveling past the house. We decided to take a drive to Akron and see the Cleveland Indians AAA team, the Akron Areos. For sports fans, I highly recommend minor league ball games. The cost is a fraction of major league games, parking is a breeze and the crowds are minimal. The kids were jazzed that we were only 6 rows behind home plate.
There were enough open seats that the adults scooted back a couple rows to spread out and give the kids some much appreciated independence. We were close enough, however, to hear the laughter when the announced the first batter for the opposing team…”Now batting, number 34, Lucas Duda” and Luke’s new nickname “Do-dah!” was born.
The next day, we took the opportunity to head to the big city. This time Dennis drove and we were both mentally prepared. We set the GPS to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Downtown Cleveland. I visited the Rock Hall last time I came to see Cindi and I was very excited for the kids to see everything. It did not disappoint. Cam loved Bon Jovi’s motorcycle and Dennis and Luke bonded over the stage props from Pink Floyd’s The Wall.
For our last full day in OH, we decided to take in the local sights. Passing through a small portion of Amish country, we visited an old fashion cheese barn and candy store. Luke said he was so excited he felt like a kid in a candy store, literally! I couldn’t resist the blueberry cheesecake fudge. Yum! Dennis got a real chuckle out of the local version of the washer toss gamed called “corn hole board.” He may have even bought one if it wasn’t $75!
Next stop is Mount Rushmore for the July 4th Celebrations. If the moon and stars align, we should be there in plenty of time to see the country’s largest fireworks display Friday night. Internet access may be limited but we’ll get something posted as quickly as possible.
Thanks again Cindi, Bill, Maddie and Zack. We loved every minute of our visit and can’t thank you enough for being such wonderful hosts!!!
- Visit local attractions not just big city or tourist areas. You may find a hidden treasure like Grandpa’s Cheese Barn!
- Take in a local minor league or college sporting event. Prices and crowds are reasonable.
- If you do visit popular tourist spots, plan ahead by knowing the hours, where to park and featured exhibits.
- Be flexible and relax enough to enjoy your current situation. Plans change and make sure you are able to roll with the punches and not let the little things spoil your good times!