It’s difficult to convey how immense the amount of water rolling over Niagara Falls feels. Just saying 3 tons of water per second doesn’t do it justice. There is so much water pouring over the falls that ground rumbles beneath your feet at times when the wind picks up. In person, Niagara Falls is awe inspiring. But first, Jell-O.
While going from place to place, I try to keep my eyes open for interesting or out of the ordinary stuff. About an hour outside of Buffalo was just that, the Jell-O museum. If you grew up in the 80s or 90s in the US, then you could always be sure that there was room for Jell-O. And if you weren’t sure, Bill Cosby would be right there to remind you (before things got all weird with him).
Jell-O was first produced in the 1890s in the town of LeRoy, NY. They also went on to build a large factory in LeRoy employing the majority of the town directly or indirectly. When they closed the plant in 1964, many of the townspeople lost the jobs that they’ve been doing their whole lives. Even in spite of that, the town still really loves their Jell-O and hence the museum dedicated to its history. They are also one of a select few places in the US that have an official 8 foot tall statue of liberty. To me, that’s less interesting than the history of Jell-O (though I think that’s because I live in the place where the real statue of liberty resides). Seasoned tomato and Italian salad was a flavor of Jell-O that was released for a short time starting in 1965. It didn’t last for very long though.
The Jell-O museum also had a transportation museum on the bottom floor. Nothing crazy, but some generally really interesting items. For example, if you ever wondered what a pleasure wagon looked like in the US in the 1830s, I’ve got you covered. But pleasure wagon doesn’t mean what you think it means (as you can see by the picture). Very little looks pleasurable about riding in this wagon.
At the onset of faster modes of transportation, there also came with it, more traveling salesmen. These types sold all sorts of things and made all sorts of crazy claims. You occasionally hear these types of people referred to as snake oil salesmen. In other words, people who knowingly sell fake goods or good that don’t do what they claim. At the museum, there was a cabinet (shown here) of proprietary medicines that were made in LeRoy, New York. Some of them were actually medicine as far as the time knew they were helping like menthol rub, blister covers for healing, and cough drops. The rest of the items were questionable at best. This included things like using tea with celery as medicine.
Wings and Beef
The one thing I couldn’t leave Buffalo without actually trying is Anchor Bar (DDD). This is where buffalo wings were invented. To be honest, the wings weren’t actually anything better than average. The bar itself was pretty awesome though and it had a live band playing jazz which I always appreciate. Apparently people make the trek for the same reason I did, the place where it all began for wings. But you may want to try a few different places for wings since this is Buffalo after all.
Since I didn’t want to leave Buffalo without trying at least one other major food item they are famous for, I went over to Blackthorn Restaurant (DDD) to try the Beef on Weck. This is a roast beef sandwich with horseradish and tastes fantastic. This particular version had a tasty sea salt bun and came with some of the most amazing tater tots I think I’ve ever had. The other item that Blackthorn is famous for is their Irish Beer Cheddar Soup. So I naturally got a cup of that. It would have been a bowl, but this was my third meal of just the evening. At this point I’ve run out of adjectives to use for how good the food is. If you get to Buffalo, don’t skip out on the food.
So Much Water
However, the real reason I came to Buffalo was because it was right next to Niagara Falls. This place was absolutely awe inspiring. No matter how many pictures or videos of it I’ve seen, it’s nothing compared to standing next to it and feeling awesome power of mother nature rumbling 3 tons of water per second beneath your feet. There is no picture I can show you or video I can put here that would do justice to the magnitude of what is Niagara Falls. So I’ll leave this video here of the water rushing over the falls in slow motion to give you an idea of what kind of volume there is. Interestingly, the Taughannock Falls that I saw in Ithica were 215 feet tall making it roughly 33 feet higher than Niagara Falls. The difference is (obviously) in the volume.
Charlie and I ended up walking over to the Canadian side of the falls (which had way better food and a much better view). There was also a host of people on the American side of the falls encouraging you to do so. You were able to go literally stand over the edge of the falls while you were on the Canadian side. I think everything on the Canadian side was way better. Random fact, the majority of food places on the American side of Niagara Falls were Indian restaurants. There isn’t anything wrong with that, it was just an unexpected when I was trying to get a burger and wings. I intentionally skipped eating on the Canadian side to get back to the American side for food. It’s kind of like when you are in the bathroom and you expect to see people but you look over and see this next to you staring back at you. Come on Canada, what are we doing here? Seriously…
The gallery of pictures from Buffalo is available on Google Photos.