On a Few Murals

You may recall two past posts (this one and that one) about attending this year’s Opening Day festivities in the city. As I walked many miles, certain sights reminded me of Resa – a Canadian photographer who uses her blog to share the graffiti art and murals she finds in cities. (If you visit her blog, tell her I sent you.)

Granted, on this day I wasn’t prowling Cincinnati’s city center looking for outdoor murals, but because I thought of Resa each time I stumbled across a mural, I knew a post was in the making. Enjoy some of the murals I captured on this day. Which is your favorite?

 

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On a Legendary Parade

The Findlay Market Parade may not have the opulence and national recognition of Pasadena’s Rose Parade or Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade in New York City, but it meets their tradition on a local scale.

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Findlay Market (in its own right) is a Cincinnati institution. In earlier times, the city had many markets, but Findlay Market is the sole survivor and now listed as a National Historic Landmark. Located in the historic Over-the-Rhine neighborhood, Ohio’s oldest continuously operated market has its named attached to a parade associated with Opening Day. (You may recall from this post last week that I went into the city for the ambiance of the day.)

2014 was the Cincinnati Reds’ 133rd Opening Day and the 95th Findlay Market Parade.  The parade route is several miles along with rows of people lining the entire journey … and many more people watching in city center.

The Reason for the Annual Celebration

The Reason for the Annual Celebration

Although records show this year’s parade had over 180 floats, a float is definite as any wheeled vehicle that carries people. A truck pulling a long trailer loaded with people dressed in red (with some holding a plastic glass) is a float. In other words, it’s a cheesy parade featuring local celebrities, organizations, businesses, trucks, horses, marching bands, a lawn mower drill team, and more. This parade is not opulent, but it is a beloved Cincinnati tradition and the reason why people will stand and watch for 2 hours. Enjoy the parade.

People love to participate in this parade

People love to participate in this parade

Do you remember this post about Teddy?

He was the Honorary Grand Marshall (as a Reds great from the past was the Grand Marshall)

He was the Honorary Grand Marshall (as a Reds great from the past was the Grand Marshall)

I strolled to Fountain Square where crowds were the biggest.

Do you see Cincinnati's leading lady with her outstretched arms in the background?

Do you see Cincinnati’s leading lady with her outstretched arms in the background?

Looking back at Fountain Square from the Skywalk

Looking back at Fountain Square from the Skywalk

For those who want a closer look at the lady on Fountain Square

For those who want a closer look at the lady on Fountain Square

Others in the parade

It's a float!

It’s a float!

Cheers to Cincinnati's beer tradition and their salute to Guapo

Cheers to Cincinnati’s beer tradition and their salute to Guapo

 

On a Rite of Spring

Thousands of people descend on downtown for a parade, the game, and the general excitement of this annual rite of spring. The young and old, male and female, tall and short, rich and poor, workers and nonworkers, locals and out-of-towners … most dressed in red.

Many workers do not go to work – and many of those who do are not as productive. Kids skip school – and many those who do not face a day of study halls or atypical activities. These behaviors happen every year – thus predictable – then normality follows the next day.

For those who do not know, professional baseball started in Cincinnati. For many years, a Reds home game served as the start to the Major League Baseball (MLB) season. In recent years, that tradition has given way to MLB’s quest for more money, but the Cincinnati Reds remain as the only team that starts the season with a home game – so this day was Opening Day…a special day in Cincinnati … and no other city in the country embraces the day as my city along the Ohio River.

After a horrendous winter, weather brought us sun and warmth. With this setting serving as the perfect opportunity for me to get away from the move-related activities, I went downtown to join thousands of others who were also dressed in red.

For ease and convenience, I parked on the Newport, Kentucky side of the river, and emerged from the garage at Newport on the Levy …

Newport on the Levy with shops, eateries, theaters, and an aquarium

Newport on the Levy with shops, eateries, theaters, and an aquarium

… then had lunch at this establishment (the owners won venture capital money on Shark Tank) …

 

Excellent source for grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup

Excellent source for grilled cheese sandwiches and tomato soup

… the Cincinnati skyline and the quiet baseball stadium 4 hours before game time

It's a beautiful day in the neighborhood

It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood

… the Ohio side with three sports venues on the river and a glimpse of the Brooklyn Bridge’s prototype

Cincinnati has a beautiful riverfront ... and parks are behind me

Cincinnati has a beautiful riverfront … and parks are behind me

… looking back to Covington, Kentucky and the other end of our famous bridge

Daniel Libeskind designed the building with the slanted roof

Daniel Libeskind designed the building with the slanted roof

… while walking beside the stadium, banners remind me of important events in Reds history

Sorry Yankee fans, but our Big Red Machine was one of the best teams ever

Sorry Yankee fans, but our Big Red Machine was one of the best teams ever

… fans eagerly awaiting the start of the festivities around Great American Ball Park

The party goers are just to the right (next pic)

The party goers are just to the right (next pic)

… but many others found a party a short distance away

This must be the no-alcohol zone

This must be the no-alcohol zone

… but for me on this day, I was heading into the city center where thousands gathered for an Opening Day tradition … and that will come in a post next week … besides, I didn’t have a ticket to the game.

On a New Thrill

Roller coasters are known for providing a thrill. For starters, here’s an interesting thrill that thrillseeker El Guapo should try.

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Although debatable, many coaster enthusiasts would say Ohio leads the nation in great coasters. With Cedar Point to the north and Kings Island in the south, these parks offer quite the assortment.

We live close enough to Kings Island to hear the nightly fireworks. They tore down one coaster and just announced it’s replacement to open in April 2014.

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It’s not my type of ride, but climb aboard for your inaugural ride on Banshee!

On Got It?

Before you got it, you have to get it … and in Cincinnati, it’s Goetta (get-uh). Goetta? Yep … Goetta, which is actually another original Cincinnati dish.

Goetta is a local breakfast sausage whose roots go back to Cincinnati’s German heritage. Many of the local German immigrants were peasants, so to make to get more out of their beef and pork; they added oats and spices as salt, pepper, rosemary, and thyme into a sausage mixture. Today, Glier’s Meats is the largest manufacture of Goetta, producing over 1 million pounds annually of this local culinary treat.

I’m not a life-long local, so I didn’t grow up with Goetta – nor has it been part of our household. Therefore, this past weekend we attended our first GoettaFest, a 3-day festival held along the Kentucky side of the river that features all-things Goetta.

Sponsored by Glier’s Meats, each food vendor must offer three Goetta dishes, two non-Goetta dishes, and one dessert – and there’s the additional challenge of no duplicates among vendors. In the end, GoettaFest offerings include Goetta Wraps, Goetta Gyros, Goetta Kabobs, Goetta Fish Tacos, Goetta Gumbo, Goetta Goobers, Goetta Brownies, Goetta Shepherd’s Pie, Goetta Pizza, Goetta Coney, Goetta Steak and Eggs Sandwich, Goetta Hoagie, Goetta Egg Roll, Goetta Hash, Goetta Nachos, Goetta Rueben, Fried Goetta Balls, Goetta Mac’n Cheese, Goetta Fried Rice, Goetta Corn Dogs, Goetta Sushi, and more!

Along with past-post features Skyline Chili and Graeter’s Ice Cream, you can add Goetta to local Cincinnati culinary treats. Because Cincinnatians want to take care of their own who have moved away and spread the word to others who want to know, these local products and others are part of packages that can be purchased through Cincinnati Favorites.

Consider Cincinnati Favorites as a possible gift for that hard-to-buy-for person. After all, House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) is a Cincinnatian, and that’s the recent birthday present he sent President Obama.

Now that you’ve got it, learn more about Goetta below.

Enjoy this short news report about Goetta.

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Enjoy this report about GoettaFest.