• Welcome to the WDWMAGIC.COM Forums!
    Please take a look around, and feel free to sign up and join the community.You can use your Twitter or Facebook account to sign up, or register directly.

Pre-Trip Buddy and Philmonster return to the World!

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Advertisement
So we leave on Tuesday for what I think is going to be a pretty wacky trip, and I will share every detail of it with you, assuming I do not fall in the falls never to be seen again.....

In the meantime - quick question -

Does anyone who has been to the American side of the falls have any interesting restaurant recommendations - fast food, fine dining, or anything in between? Yelp has been less than helpful. Any responses will be much appreciated Already noted the Rainforest Cafe @MegRuss626 and thanks for suggesting that. I'm going to lure Philmonster in there and then when he starts freaking out, I will just tell him that he entered a time portal to Kissimmee. :)
 
Last edited:

MegRuss626

Well-Known Member
So we leave on Tuesday for what I think is going to be a pretty wacky trip, and I will share every detail of it with you, assuming I do not fall in the falls never to be seen again.....

In the meantime - quick question -

Does anyone who has been to the American side of the falls have any interesting restaurant recommendations - fast food, fine dining, or anything in between? Yelp has been less than helpful. Any responses will be much appreciated Already noted the Rainforest Cafe @MegRuss626 and thanks for suggesting that. I'm going to lure Philmonster in there and then when he starts freaking out, I will just tell him that he entered a time portal to Kissimmee. :)
On the same block as the hotel, there’s a restaurant called Savor. We saw it while walking around and my husband thought it sounded interesting. It’s run by students that attend the culinary school that is right there. There’s also a buffet in the casino. We did the breakfast buffet the morning we left and it wasn’t too bad. Hope you guys have a great trip!
 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
On the same block as the hotel, there’s a restaurant called Savor. We saw it while walking around and my husband thought it sounded interesting. It’s run by students that attend the culinary school that is right there. There’s also a buffet in the casino. We did the breakfast buffet the morning we left and it wasn’t too bad. Hope you guys have a great trip!
Thanks so much!
 

Willmark

Well-Known Member
So we leave on Tuesday for what I think is going to be a pretty wacky trip, and I will share every detail of it with you, assuming I do not fall in the falls never to be seen again.....

In the meantime - quick question -

Does anyone who has been to the American side of the falls have any interesting restaurant recommendations - fast food, fine dining, or anything in between? Yelp has been less than helpful. Any responses will be much appreciated Already noted the Rainforest Cafe @MegRuss626 and thanks for suggesting that. I'm going to lure Philmonster in there and then when he starts freaking out, I will just tell him that he entered a time portal to Kissimmee. :)
One thing if you have already done the Maid of the Mists is to explore the “Cave” of the Winds.

Be prepared however as you will get soaked but the view is really cool.

 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
One thing if you have already done the Maid of the Mists is to explore the “Cave” of the Winds.

Be prepared however as you will get soaked but the view is really cool.

Well thank you!
 

TheMouseFan

Well-Known Member
One thing if you have already done the Maid of the Mists is to explore the “Cave” of the Winds.

Be prepared however as you will get soaked but the view is really cool.

Well thank you!
I totally agree about the Cave of the Winds. Here are some pics I got this past June when we were there. You can stand on the Hurricane Deck and you are almost directly under the falls!
20190614_114944.jpg
20190614_115015.jpg
20190614_115138.jpg
20190614_115345.jpg
20190614_115500.jpg
20190614_115835.jpg
20190614_115938.jpg
20190614_120001.jpg
Hope you guys have a great time!
 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Hi all. One night, one full day, and one half day of Niagara left and then I will be posting a crazy trip report next week. In the meantime, here are some random pics of our adventures so far. I haven’t gotten locked out of the hotel room naked yet, but there’s always tonight or tomorrow. 😜😜😜
ADBE0D33-992A-4BAB-9681-2A4A95619E74.jpegB9E987AB-DFE2-45EC-9AC3-0FB0772988D7.jpegF7BC1AB7-DB52-4C99-BDB6-7156AEB5BF78.jpegDAD8B436-673C-4F3C-8056-DD8EDC73293F.jpeg84CDD4B8-5B59-4ED6-8E28-DF1D8C8539E7.jpeg53AFA241-2EAE-40B8-A168-B5796749BB05.jpegE26844C9-28F8-4EB8-9B5D-896FC8FD5F6F.jpeg0C1ED475-E2D0-4969-8088-FA8CE3127BD5.jpeg
 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
Soooooooo, the trip to Niagara is now over. It was an amazing time in many ways. A few frustrations here and there, mostly with the hotel, and with the Labor Day weekend crowds, but overall, so much fun. We did this trip with the least planning I have ever done on a trip anywhere, but somehow, it went off without too many speed-bumps. And the good thing is that now, Philmonster has to go to Disney in February. That was the agreement, after all. ;)

So, without further boring intro, let's get this party started in 3......2.....1..............:):):):):)

CHAPTER ONE: I'LL TAKE MY FIRST CLASS BAG OF CHIPS AND PLASTIC CUP OF WINE, IF YOU PLEASE!

When I booked our flights earlier this summer, I had just gotten a small bonus from my job, and I was feeling a little peckish.

There was a great round trip rate from JFK to Buffalo for under two hundred bucks, but they wouldn't let you pick your seat. It was assigned at the airport. Grrr....not into that.

But! For just a few bucks more, you could pick your own seat in cattle-class, where I usually sit.

BUT!!!! For just a few bucks more than that, you could upgrade to economy comfort, where you had more legroom and got free adult beverages and snacks for the whole flight. By this point, the price was around $290 round trip, per person.

BUT!!!!!!!!!!!!! For just about a hundred bucks more, you could go First Class!

Me?? First Class? What??? I might as well have been considering buying a Bengal tiger.

The one and only time I have ever flown first class was in 2006, at which time I represented the musical DREAMGIRLS. Someone from the studio called me up and said they were doing a screening of the film (prior to release) and asked if I would like to come to LA to see it. I said yes, of course, and they told me a plane ticket would be waiting for me at the airport. Imagine my total shock when I got to the airport to find that my ticket from NYC to LA was First Class. Huhhhhhhhh????

I work in live theatre, and you are lucky if theatre companies will mail you a broom and tell you to try to get it to fly. But these motion picture companies are not messing around. That first class blew my mind. Hot towels and champagne the minute you sit down. Every movie you could possibly want to watch. Meals served on actual plates. Drinks flowing like the River Jordan from beginning to end. It was pretty amazing.

It was this that I was thinking of the night I booked our flights from JFK to Buffalo, bonus from my job burning a little hole in my pocket. Before I knew it, I had clicked buy, buy, BUY for the First Class flights.

Ehm....a little wine may or may not have been involved in this decision. You be the judge.

So anyway.....flight was booked. Hotel was Sheraton at the Falls. Key to note, it was Sheraton at the Falls, not Sheraton on the Falls (which was on the Canada side, which we could not get into because Philmonster was a little b#stard in his early 20's, and we had to rearrange the entire trip when we found out the rules (details on this above - scroll up).

But too much exposition. I would have already thrown this book in the fire and read something else instead. But if anyone is still with me, here we go:

Tuesday morning. August 27. Last week. Here comes my chariot....emmmm....Long Island Railroad, to whisk me to Jamaica Station to catch the Air Train to JFK.

IMG_0380.JPG

And look who's waiting for me when I get there. A Philmonster!

IMG_0381.JPG

I don't know what the hell is going on with those pants. They are his comfortable pants. Or something......

Well, I know you do not want to suffer through the security line with us, so through the magic of Niagara, or Disney, or something, we have arrived at the airport.....bar!
IMG_0382.JPG

It's cranberry juice....plus! Hey, it's five o'clock somewhere. ;)

And soon the bill arrived.

IMG_0384.JPG

Ummmm.....errr.......

Okay several shameful things.

1. See top of check. 9:46 AM. Ooops.

2. Three drinks were consumed. I'm sure you can guess who had two. If not, free answer. The queen in the white tee-shirt.

3. We spent $90.37 (not counting tip) without even thinking about it before we even got out of the airport. This is not the first time this type of thing has happened, and if I have not learned my lesson by now, I guess I never will. I may never be able to afford that Bengal tiger, but dammit if I won't drop some cash at an airport bar.

Anyway, onward to our "first class" flight, which involves some pretty hideous photos, but you have to experience our "first class". I insist.

So come with me, and you'll be in a land of pure imagination.....or at least a tiny little puddle jumping plane pretending to have first class.

I told Philmonster that we had to board early so we could order champagne and then sneer at all the commoners as they crawl past us into steerage class. (PS - In case you don't know me, I was totally joking because basically, I'm steerage class 99.99% of the time).

But the joke was on me because when we got on the plane, we were led to our first class seats, which were marginally larger than steerage, and basically in no particular order - no hot towels, no movies, no anything really, because idiot that I am, I did not realize that the flight is under an hour long. I was hoping that we would at least have a curtain, and we would be able to kick Kristen Wigg out, like in this ;) :


They did offer us prosecco in a plastic cup before take-off. Whoo-hooo!!

Once in the air, they offered a quick drink service, and served it in an actual glass! they also offered bags of chips and bananas, among other snacks.

IMG_0392.JPG

I have no explanation as to why I am holding up a magazine with Orlando Bloom on it, as I am not even a fan. I'm not NOT a fan, but I could basically care less.

I also have no explanation why my neck looks like a contracted accordion. I mean I use my face cream every night, just like Edith Bunker. This aging thing just sucks, but let's face it, it is better than the alternative.

Speaking of class, between me, Philmonster and this guy, there was clearly none in First Class that day. Yup, let's just put our dirty shoes all over the wall. Wonderful.

IMG_0401.JPG

Annnnnyway.............it looks like we are about to arrive in Buffalo!

.IMG_0404.JPG

But I still have a drink!

IMG_0402.JPG

We should be on the ground soon, and then we can get to the good stuff, like getting soaking wet, losing a zillion dollars in a casino, seeing an old college friend, getting pulled over by cops, and much much more.

Back to you soon!
 
Last edited:

MinnieM123

Well-Known Member
Tuesday morning. September 27. Last week.
Not that I'm the brightest bulb on the tree, but I think you meant August 27. :p

I don't know what the hell is going on with those pants. They are his comfortable pants. Or something......
Aw, he was on vacation -- just wanted to be comfy! ;)

Well, I know you do not want to suffer through the security line with us, so through the magic of Niagara, or Disney, or something, we have arrived at the airport.....bar!
We spent $90.37 (not counting tip) without even thinking about it before we even got out of the airport.
So, close to $100 at the airport bar, and you hadn't even flown/arrived at your vacation destination yet?! :jawdrop: But then again, should I be surprised? :hilarious:
 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
CHAPTER TWO - THIS MUST BE SOMEONE ELSE'S TRIP REPORT BECAUSE THIS CHAPTER DOES NOT HAVE A SINGLE DRINK IN IT!

So, we have arrived!
IMG_0405.JPG

Before we even left the airport, I found my kitchen.

IMG_0407.JPG

While I was busy looking for queens in a kitchen, Philmonster rented this car.

IMG_0410.JPG

And we're on our way! Not the nicest weather on the first day, but it gets better from here.

IMG_0411.JPG

First stop - our hotel - Sheraton at the Falls.

Sheraton outside.jpg

As you see, it has not only a TGI Fridays, but a Rainforest Cafe. It is also connected to a giant casino by underground tunnel, but more on that later. Here's the hallway and room:

Sheraton hallway.jpg

Sheraton room.jpg
I sprung for a concierge level room, which was probably a mistake, because there was nothing much to the club room, other than some cheap wine poured from 5PM - 7PM daily, and a pretty gross breakfast that was always completely picked over by the time we got to it.

The room itself was so tiny I didn't even bother doing a video room tour, and the walls were paper thin to the point where you could hear complete conversations from beginning to end as if you were listening to the radio. And the day when the infant baby checked in next door and howled from about 4AM until 10AM was a lot of fun.

On the positive side, the bed was totally comfortable, and the air-conditioner worked perfectly, keeping the room very cool at all times. My biggest pet peeve about hotels these days are the energy efficient air conditioners that shut off when they detect no movement in the room, and therefore, you wake up in a puddle of sweat each night. I'm looking at you, Disney.

So............comfortable bed, comfortable air conditioner, free cheap wine, and oh, we also had a view of Canada, which I will show you later. So I guess it wasn't so bad after all.

Now let's go see some water!


Water!

IMG_0415.JPG

More water!

IMG_0428.JPG

Philmonster with water!

IMG_0425.JPG

And since it is telling me I can't put anymore pics in this post, I'll pick this up again soon. And the next chapter might even have drinks in it! ;)
 

MinnieM123

Well-Known Member
Glad you found a good restaurant at the airport! :joyfull:

As for the hotel, I hate the design of the hallway rug. :p The club level room couldn't have looked any different from the regular priced rooms -- could it?! :jawdrop: All that aside, the main thing was that you got a comfortable bed, and thank goodness the a/c was working well. I know exactly what you mean about some of the newer a/c units -- useless!!!

Nice photos of the falls so far! :)
 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
CHAPTER THREE - WATER, MORE WATER, BOAT RIDE, MORE WATER, CASINO NIGHT, MORE WATER, AND A SURPRISE GUEST APPEARANCE BY A HIDEOUS SHIRT

Hey look! Here's Goofball Thomas doing a little wave-prance-dance followed by......water!!!!!


And look! More water!

IMG_0427.JPG

Well, at this point, it was getting late in the afternoon, so Philmonster decided there was only one thing left to do - go see more water, this time up close and personal!

maid of the mist entrance.jpg

They make you wear these things!

IMG_0435.JPG

IMG_0439.JPG

We look like a couple of witches from Blueberry Hill.

Anyway, this thing is supposed to take you right up to the very edge of the falls. What could possibly go wrong?

Hey look! More water!

IMG_0441.JPG

And then....hey wait a minute....why is this thing going closer?....and closer....and closer.....and.............

DROWNED RAT!

IMG_0443.JPG

Drowned Philmonster!

IMG_0446.JPG

Yeaaahhhhh, boyyyyzzz. We're lookin' hot and sexy now!

We were going to head straight to the casino but of course that was now out of the question, so we went across the street to this strange, spooky building called "Made in America", where, oddly, an "international food court" was advertised. The below is not my picture, as you can see from the nice blue sky rather than our grim, grey sky. I was too busy trying to wring thirty gallons of Niagara Falls out of my shirt and shorts to play photographer.
parking.jpg

But yup, that's what it looked like.

And here is the eerily empty international food court.

IMG_0429.JPG

IMG_0431.JPG

All I'm going to say about this place is that the food was terrible, and they were selling MAGA caps and mugs in the gift shop....which I don't think are actually "made in America", but let me step quickly away from that subject and out the door of this weird place, and through the magic of the Falls, in just a few minutes, we will be changed for our (first of many) nights at the casino. Back to you in a few minutes!

Hey wait a minute! That chapter didn't have any drinks in it either. What the hell is going on here???? Betty Ford, get out of my trip report, dammit!

Well, technically, this is not the end of the chapter - I just can't post any more pics - so in 3-----2-----1-------it is time for------------
 

BuddyThomas

Well-Known Member
Original Poster
CHAPTER THREE - CONTINUED

Boom! A glass of wine, and the Carrie White blood shirt apparently crawled its way out of my closet and attached itself to me again for the first time since California Grill!

IMG_0448.JPG

Yup! It's still as horrifying as ever, and that's the last you'll be seeing of that thing.

But notice our great view of Canada. That's the side we were supposed to be staying on before we found out that Phil probably couldn't get across the border due to a little something on his record from his early 20's. But don't worry - we're sneaking into Canada tomorrow. Seriously. ;)

Now onto the Seneca Niagara Resort and Casino, which is connected to our hotel by a tunnel!

Not my picture, but here it is:

Seneca casino.jpg

You can tell which ones are not my pictures because those are the ones that don't suck. :)

Hey, I bet you didn't know I could fly!

IMG_0458.JPG

Time to win allllll the money!!!!!!! And guess what....we found out there is a Fat Tuesdays in this place!!!!!!

Fat Tuesdays 1.jpg

And it was closed!!!!!!!!!!! We were told it would be open until 10, but we got there at 8-ish and it was totally closed, with those spinning alcoholic frozen delights just taunting us.

We went and asked about it at one of the 16,000 other bars and the bartender said "Oh that. Well that's the only place here not owned by the casino. They just rent space, and they kind of just show up whenever they want. The only night you can guarantee they will be open is Friday and Saturday."

Well!!!

Anyway, if you play games, you get free beer, wine, or well drinks, if you are lucky enough for one of the waitresses to come by, which actually happens pretty rarely, but we got our hands on a few, as you might imagine.

I took a hundred dollar bill and decided to feed it to this fine lady:

IMG_0413.JPG

It seemed like a good investment. After all, she was basically telling me she was going to give me $23,034.00 in return.

Twenty minutes later.........

IMG_0465.JPG

ehm...........uuuuuhhhhh........ummmm............

Time to go!!

And that's it for now. Please be sure to tune into the next chapter of this harrowing saga when we attempt to sneak into Canada, have an audience with some gorillas and elephants at the Rainforest Cafe, and watch the Falls turn every color of the rainbow at night, along with fireworks! :)
 
Top Bottom