To quote Horace Greeley “Go West!”

A few weeks ago we went way west to Seattle for our nephew’s graduation from the University of Washington.  It was our first trip to Seattle.  We loved it and will certainly be going back.  Being the good tourists that we are the first place we went to was the Pike’s Place Market — and it did not disappoint.   Beecher’s Handmade Cheese had some of the best mac ‘n’ cheese we have ever had.  So much fresh produce and seafood.

Pike's Place Market, Seattle

Pike's Place Market, Seattle

Pike's Place Market, Seattle

Another highlight was  Gas Works Park, opened to the public in 1975, which is a 19.1 acres public park on the site of the former Seattle Gas Light Company gasification plant.  The boiler house has been converted to a picnic shelter with tables, fire grills and an open area. What was once the exhauster-compressor building is now a children’s play barn featuring a maze of brightly painted machinery.  Even in the rain, this place was a treat.

Gas Works Park

Gas Works Park

Gas Works ParkWe had heard of Salumi prior to going to Seattle and were hoping to be able to find time to make it there for lunch.  Just off of  Pioneer Square, Salumi is only open Tuesday through Thursday from 11am to 4pm (or earlier if they run out of food.)  As determined as we were to sample a delicious sandwich from Salumi we managed to get there twice.  If you are going, our advice is to get there early, because you will have to stand in line — it’s that good!

Salumi

And while we were in Pioneer Square, we went below ground on Bill Speidel’s Underground Tour where we learned the history of Seattle and got to see some crazy stuff that had been untouched underground for years.  We just wanted to return with a truck to take some of the fantastic stuff we saw underground.

Seattle Underground

Seattle Underground

At the end of our Seattle visit we hopped on the train to go north to Vancouver where we spent a couple days right on the water.  It was there that we saw some of the most adorable houseboats we had ever seen.

Vancouver Houseboats

When our friend Karen found out we were going to Vancouver she made arrangements with a friend of hers so that we could get a behind the scenes tour of the Vancouver Aquarium which is in Stanley Park.  We spent several hours there mesmerized by the penguins and otters.  Already in Stanley Park we spent the rest of the day exploring different areas of the park.  Huge trees, beautiful flowers, open spaces, the water — it was all amazing and we were lucky to have a gorgeous day to explore.

Vancouver Aquarium

Vancouver Aquarium

Now back from vacation, a long drive west to State College for this weekend’s Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts.  Stop by booth 0-52 and say hi.  Here are some the fun new things that made the trip to Pennsylvania.

JunkHead

JunkHead

JunkYard Dog

Back to Seattle for a second…if you go, you have to visit the Fremont Troll.

Fremont Troll, Seattle

And how do you go to Seattle and not go to the Space Needle?  

Space Needle

And while you are there, check out the new Chihuly exhibit.

Chihuly: Garden and Glass

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