Cleveland Area for the Weekend


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North America » United States » Ohio » Cuyahoga Valley NP
December 11th 2010
Published: January 4th 2011
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Cleveland

Cleveland, OH Bedford, OH Peninsula, OH Streetsboro, OH Kent, OH Cleveland, OH

We departed Chicago at 11:30PM via the Megabus. I was very lubricated for the ride in order to sleep. Immediately upon getting there, i was out. When we arrived in Cleveland; our friend was of course a little late but nothing special. We walked around for a moment and looked at the holiday decorations. We looked at that old church in the town square and then walked over to a hotel to find a restroom. By the time, we got out of the hotel, our friend was there to pick us up. We headed down Broadway street in hopes of finding a restaurant. Soon, we stumbled upon the Broadway Diner which was this hole in the way place but with great food. Definitely great hangover food. From there, we headed to Mill Creek Falls.

Mill Creek Falls
This was fun. The parking lot is just off to the side of the falls and there is a small trail that follows the bank of the river. It is a fun place to stop and check out the falls. The visitor center was closed but we were still able to walk around and what not. It's hard to believe that something so beautiful would be in the middle of Cleveland.

Bedford Reservation
This is a beautiful drive if you get the chance to do it. With all the snow, it was absolutely breathtaking. The views of the river are fantastic from some of the hiking trails. We would pull off whenever something caught our eye and got a chance to hike a little bit. With everything covered in snow, it was fantastic. We were looking for some more falls but we could not find them but it did not matter since the park was beautiful. At one point, there was this beautiful scenic outlook that anyone would have loved during the prime fall season. Even in the winter, it was fantastic.

Brandywine Falls
This place was fun and definitely larger than the previous Mill Creek Falls. You walk along the river for a minute until you end up right at the falls. There is an old frame of a building still there. We couldn't decide what it was originally. If you continue, there is a bridge that overlooks the falls from behind which was neat. I guess you could continue and walk along the other side of the river and see the falls from the other side but we decided that the view wasn't worth it. So we turned around and headed to Peninsula.

Peninsula, OH
This quaint little town in the middle of the national park is quite nice. It wasn't exactly what I expected because the downtown was a little more spread out and there were a few more homes than I imagined. There were a few restaurants and the town definitely gave you the old Midwestern town feeling. We parked and walked around for a minute around the water. We saw the old train station which was semi-disappointing because there were so many signs for it and it's not that big of a deal. The beauty of this town is fantastic and I definitely would recommend it to anyone in the area.

Bedford - "It's a Wonderful Life Festival"


I just happened to run across this festival when I was researching for this trip. It looked like it was corny but could take up a few minutes of our time with some excitement. We first started at DiJulius Cafe with some wraps. I had the bacon ranch and coffee which was spectacular. The place was
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It's a Wonderful Life Festival in Bedford, OH
extremely crowded and everyone kept saying how this place was so good. I think my friends enjoyed their dishes too. We finished eating and decided what we wanted to do. The festival was obviously a big deal for the area and an even bigger deal for kids in the area. As you walked the main thoroughfare, there were plenty of shops and restaurants. They were all participating in the festival. At first, the pizza shop was giving away samples of pizza. Then, you could go see a balloon man who would tie balloon animals for you or a puppet show or even Santa. The part that we were excited for was to take a horse-drawn carriage ride through the downtown area. We started at the main square which was all decorated for the holiday and took some pictures. Then we went to the historical society museum. At this point, I wasn't feeling well so I couldn't have been more disinterested in the museum. However, Abraham Lincoln's twin was in full costume there which was quite a sight. I don't know if Honest Abe has any ties to Ohio but the resemblance was definitely there. The museum also had some complimentary homemade cookies which were to die for. I had some peanut brittle and a ginger snap - both equally delicious. From there, we walked around some more; got more cookies and hot chocolate. We eventually went and waited in line to take the horse drawn carriage ride. But, alas, just before we got on, my friend and I decided to go move the care for fear of getting a ticket. When we got back our friends were still on the carriage so we hopped in and went to see a puppet show which would have been exceptionally awesome if I were 6 years old. However; the homemade cookies at the show were fantastic. After the puppet show, we went to the local thrift store where everything was ridiculously cheap. I purchased a cool drinking game for a quarter (which ended up being really fun but that's for later). My friends purchased a bunch of books and some ice skates that fit perfectly. Then, we got a bunch of free snacks and hot chocolate from the Salvation Army.

Streetsboro
From Bedford, we headed to the town where my friend lived. We weren't exactly sure what to do for dinner but ended up getting some fish from the grocery store as well as some rosemary french fries. We went back home and just dicked around for a couple hours and watched that lifetime movie about the Amish murders. After the movie and a fabulous dinner, we decided to get ready for a night about the town. However, there was a significant snag; to get to any major town and not have to drive would be a $100 cab fare. However, we found a bar (like at Chili's) in the town next to Streetsboro and called a cab and got only a $50 fare. Once that was decided, we got ready and hopped in the cab only to have him talk us into going to Kent. On the ride there, the driver discussed all the politics involved with being a cab in the area INCLUDING how the police make it hard to get your license so that they will get more DUIs. This was ridiculous but we did not let it ruin our night. Meanwhile, we played the drinking game that I purchased at the thrift store. It was difficult at first to figure out how to play but once we figured it out, it was really fun.

Kent
We ended up at this crazy brosef bar called Water Street Tavern. My friend got a beer and my other friend and I got what was called the hurricane. It consisted of every kind of liquor you could imagine and a couple mixers. However, when I drank it; it tasted like cranberry juice and was honestly sobering. After that, we went to 157 Lounge. This place was very posh and everyone inside was dressed to the nines. So, we decided to take a shot of tequila. We took the shots and stood around for a minute or so. We all basically decided that this place was not up to par and that we wanted to leave. It was a difficult call but we could not force ourselves to have fun here. However; I overheard that they were giving away free Blue Moon but we would have to find the promoters. So we found the promoters and got two free pints of Blue Moon and some handy bottle openers. After that, we sat down and drank our beer. Then, we decided that we would give dancing a shot (after some short turmoil while my friend lost her purse at the bar). The music was actually really good and from what I could tell the DJ had to be gay. We danced and danced and danced and actually ended up having a really good night. Just before 2am, we decided that we would call the cabby. We called him and he was promptly there to come and get us. We rode home; I was starving and didn't have anything to eat, we talked and promptly went to bed.

Sunday


The next morning was not difficult for me to wake up but I was absolutely starving. After getting ready took what seemed like an eternity, we headed over to Bob Evan's for some grub. Everything was so delicious and we definitely ordered way too much food. They have these dessert pancakes that are to die for. After that, we headed out to Tower City in downtown Cleveland because my friend was afraid of the snowpocalypse. We were supposed to leave at 1AM that night and since it was about 3pm, we decided we would try to get on the Megabus earlier at 5pm. In the meantime, we watched this crazy kids holiday show at the mall with dancing and ridiculousness. After that, we did some shopping in the mall even though I don't think either one of us bought anything.

When we got to the Megabus, we kinda hung to the side until everyone got on. When it appeared like everyone was on and there were still plenty of seats, I went up and asked the bus driver. My tactic was not to stop talking until I got a yes and it worked. 5 minutes later, we were on the bus sitting next to each other and all was well in the world again. 5 minutes later, I got an email that the bus we were supposed to be on was canceled. How 'bout that luck?

However, our luck would soon turn to fear while we drove through the snowpocalypse with 3 foot visibility and about a foot of snow on the ground. We saw so many cars to the side of the road, it was ridiculous. At one point, the driver gave up and pulled into a bus station and we sat there for about an hour wondering our fate. Apparently there was a semi-truck blocking our way. One of the guys who was sitting next to us ended up waking the driver so that we could get around and back onto the road. We were supposed to get in at 11pm but we didn't end up getting in Chicago until 2AM. It sucked. But at least we weren't the girl who insisted on getting off in the middle of Indiana in the middle of the night in the middle of a snowstorm. Yeah, that happened.


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