13 May 2014

2014 OHIO Put-in-Bay 3 - Island Days

For "lunch" we stopped at a little place (Wharfside, I think, was the name) overlooking the marina. It was a store/bar/tackle shop combo business. Dollar bills were plastered all over the walls with names of people written on them. Besides that the most memorable thing was their Brandy Alexanders, a pretty sophisticated drink for a "dive" bar. And it was good!

Next we went to two wineries on the island. The first was PIB Winery at the Doller House Estate. I don't think we are wine snobs, but we do have some experience drinking wine. This winery may have potential, but has not come into its own yet. Although we are mostly red winers, their best was a Moscato. We would have liked to tour the house, but they did not offer this up front. (We figured it was "off season" again because we did not see any signs.) After paying for tasting they advised we could have a tour for $10 which included another tasting. We passed.

Heineman's Winery was our next stop. It was established over 100 years ago by an immigrant from Baden-Baden, Germany. I am sorry to say we have no good words for this one in regard to the wine. The tour was nice though.

In conjunction with this winery was one really cool attraction though. Per their literature Crystal Cave is the largest known Celestite geode in the world. While digging a well in 1897, Mr. Heineman discovered the cave 40 feet below the earth's surface.

Within its walls are crystals from 8-18 inches long. The crystals had a vague blue tint, but looked more green from the algae growing on them. It is 50 degrees year round in the cave-like geode. I asked what the diameter of the geode was and our guide said about 40 feet. The gift shop sold geode slices of baseball size in many colors--not from the cave, but beautiful.

Back to our rooms to freshen up and meet for a couple of pre-dinner cocktails. We had dinner at Tipper's Seafood. "Veggie" that I am, I had loaded potato skins and the others had really tasty ribs. They all oohed and aahed and just about sucked the bones dry. The place itself looked like an old 1950's nightclub. A bit out dated, but the food was good.

5/9/2014 - T & N had a longer drive and slipped out before we did, so not able to hug good-bye. Probably better as I am not good at good-byes. I get too sentimental, shall we say. They caught the 8am ferry.

We caught the 9am and the cruise this morning was thankfully on calm seas. Mike and I just sat in the car with windows open. On shore, we leisurely traveled home with a great breakfast stop at Dianna's in Port Clinton. The drive was uneventful. We arrived home at 1:30pm. Bella came running to the door to meet us like a galloping horse. We laughed and loved that she was happy to see us.

Things we missed on this trip were taking the elevator to the top of the Perry memorial, touring the fish hatchery, visiting the Lake Erie Islands Historical Society museum, and tipping one at the Put-In-Bay Brewery. All closed because of off season (except the Brewery where we were unable to find an entrance  and it looked empty through the windows). We enjoyed our stay, but not sure that we will be back again to see the attractions we missed.

Another thing we discovered was that this is Birder Week in the northwest area of Ohio. It is the Biggest Week in American Birding. I have been getting into birding a little through my friend Anne's beautiful bird photography. Birders, go to: www.BiggestWeekInAmericanBirding.com

Here's a red-winged blackbird photo I took on the trip. Love his little feet.

For more information on Put-In-Bay, go to: www.putinbay.com/IslandGuide.pdf

As always, our adventure with T & N was wonderful and we look forward next year to a new place to explore.

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If you have visited any of these places, we would love to hear your comments. Or send us recommendations of places we should not miss.