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    20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium – Image Gallery

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    Here is a collection of photos that I took at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium. I could have taken hundreds of photos, but then you wouldn’t need to go yourself! Here is a selection of photos from my visit. For more details, please read my 20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium posting.

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    20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium

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    One week ago my family headed out to check out the Ripley’s attractions in Niagara Falls. These include Louis Tussaud’s Waxworks, Ripley’s Moving Theater, and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium. Our last stop was Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium.

    Note: To view images from our trip, visit the 20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium – Image Gallery posting.

    This was the attraction that we were most anxious to visit as it had just re-opened after many months of renovations. I had been to the old Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum several times over the years. Although the attraction was always interesting, it just had kind of an old/dated feel to it. We were really looking forward to seeing the new Odditorium. We were not disappointed!

    20160620_190829.jpg The entire attraction has been completely redone, and it looks fantastic. It has been enlarged, the ceilings seem higher, and everything is much brighter.

    The odditorium has been divided into a variety of different rooms with similar themes. There are rooms that focus on strange animals, odd habits, art, and many other oddities. There are classic exhibits (shrunken heads, lint art, etc), and much more modern exhibits. It truly is filled with interactive displays, starting right in the lobby. My daughter loved the water pipe display. You can press buttons and turn knobs to make water flow, stop, change colour, and more. There was a place where you could try to fold yourself into a box, sit in Robert Wadlow’s giant chair, and stand next to the world’s shortest person.

    20160620_191757.jpg The Erik Sprague exhibit is a great example of the layout. Erik Sprague is also called the Lizardman and he has done some extreme body modification. The exhibit is brightly lit, has a life-sized figure of him, and shows a video of some of his performances. It’s amazing. My wife also liked some of the classic exhibits that show the African neck rings, stretched lips andears and foot binding.

    20160620_192714.jpg One of the exhibits that was new from just before the renovation was the Wigan Micro Sculptures. Willard Wigan creates micro sculptures that fit within the eye of a needle. This is where the name of the odditorium really comes into play… believe it or not! It really is unbelievable that this is even possible. However they have a variety of microscopes and sure enough, there are small little carvings that really do fit into the eye of the needle. Wow!!

    20160620_194947.jpg One of the best  additions to the attraction is new “play” area. I think my kids could have played there for hours. There is a mind-bending “vortex tunnel” that was totally dizzying. There are other interactive games to play such as plastic pin art, a photo silhouette wall, and more. The evening we were there wasn’t particularly busy, but there were at least a dozen or more people in this area and no one seemed to be in a rush to leave.

    20160620_194509.jpg I can’t recommend Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium enough! It was super fun and there was definitely something there for all members of my family. As has been mentioned in the other postings, the best deal is to get the 3 Attraction Flex Ticket. If you are interested in a single admission, at the time of this write-up on their website adult tickets are $17.99, senior tickets are $14.99 and child tickets are $10.99. Be sure to check out the Ripley’s web site for the latest information.

    Note: To view images from our trip, visit the 20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Odditorium – Image Gallery posting.

    20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Moving Theater – Image Gallery

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    Here is a collection of photos that I took at Ripley’s Moving Theater. As you can imagine, I didn’t take many pictures since I was watching the movie, but I took a few of the building, the lobby, and the exit. For more details, please read my 20160620 Trip to Ripley’s Moving Theater posting.

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    Our visits to the Aquarium of Niagara in Niagara Falls, NY

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    Near the beginning of November I posted about a Groupon for the Aquarium of Niagara in Niagara Falls, NY. Last year we bought one of the family passes as a Christmas gift, and it was one of the best values! We went half a dozen times as a family (5 of us) for a total of $25. You just can’t beat that!

    The aquarium is larger that it seems. There is a small tank outside with a few seals or sea lions in it. Then the building itself is surprising large (or at least it was larger than I expected). Inside they have penguins, fish, shark, and many other exhibits. There is also a large tank in the centre where they have some performances.

    As a member, you also get access to some other perks. The best one was the “touch tank” sessions. They have a room in the basement where there is a shallow aquarium. They have some sea life that you can handle and learn about. It was very cool.

    There are also all sorts of extra activities throughout the year, many of them open to everyone who has paid regular admission. During one of our trips in the summer, there was a magic show being put on. The room was packed and the kids loved it!

    If you haven’t had a chance to go over and check out the Aquarium of Niagara, I’d highly recommend it.

    As always, I’ve taken some pictures and posted them. You can see some of the thumbnails below, then click through to the Aquarium of Niagara in Summer 2012 gallery to see all 57 of them (in larger size).

    Note: As of now there are 3,707 images in 279 categories in the Niagara Falls Image Gallery

    I also took a short video showing some of the aquarium show. You can view it on YouTube or below.

    Another great trip to Bird Kingdom

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    Last week I had another opportunity to go to Bird Kingdom. Since the last time I was there, the Niagara Room has opened and I wanted to see that. It isn’t a big addition to the attraction, but it is nice. There is a room just before you go into the reptile encounter room where they have information about the history of Niagara Falls. There are reprints of various photos and newspaper articles. Since I’m pretty familiar with Niagara Falls and its history, there wasn’t much new there for me to see, but I still enjoyed it. In particular, it was neat to see a couple of photos of the Bird Kingdom from years ago before it was even the Niagara Falls Museum (when it was the Spirella Corset Company). This time, I also brought my parents along. They both found it interesting.

    Once we got to the main aviary, my mother raved about it. She was thrilled when she fed the lorikeets. A lot of attractions say that there is “fun for the whole family”, but in the case of Bird Kingdom, it is definitely true. My 4-year-old daughter enjoyed it, as I did, as my mother did.

    If you haven’t seen it yet, you should check out the  “My Fantastic Visit to the Bird Kingdom” post. I have lots of pictures available, as well as an HD video of many of the birds.

    I took some more pictures while I was there for this last visit. As always, you can see some of the thumbnails below. You can visit the Bird Kingdom in August 2012 to see the rest of the thumbnails and full-size images.

    Note: the Niagara Falls Image Gallery now has 3,544 images in 270 categories.

    Safari Niagara in August 2011 (pictures and videos)

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    I commented the other day that we hadn’t been to Marineland the previous few years. One of the reasons is that we were going to Safari Niagara instead. The kids love seeing the animals, and the play park and splash pad are fantastic. We probably went 7 or 8 times last year.

    I took some pictures of our visit last August. Most of the pictures are of the bird show, but there are a few others. As always, you can see some of the thumbnails below, and you can see the rest of the thumbnails and the larger images in the Safari Niagara in August 2011 gallery.

    As a side note, the Niagara Falls Image Gallery now has 3399 images in 265 categories.

    I also took a couple of videos. The first one is of the Birds of Prey show. You can see a few of the birds, including one that is “hunting”. You can watch this HD video on YouTube or see it below.

    The other video I took is very short, but super cute. It is of a baby Siamang Gibbon hanging off it’s mother and sucking on her thumb. You really need to check it out. You can watch this short HT video on YouTube or see it below:

    CAA Winter Festival of Lights in Winter 2011/2012

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    On December 30, my family headed down to Niagara Falls to view the lights in Queen Victoria Park. The CAA Winter Festival of Lights doesn’t seem to change much year to year, but it still a nice sight. Almost anything looks good lit up at night.

    I took some pictures as we walked around. Not all of them are of the CAA Winter Festival of Lights, but they were all taken on the same night so I’ve put them in the same gallery. You can see a few thumbnails below, or you can see the entire gallery (15 images) in the CAA Winter Festival of Lights in Winter 2011/2012 image gallery.

    There are now 3299 images in 258 categories in the Niagara Falls Image Gallery

    Pictures from Winter Festival of Lights (2010/2011) Opening Ceremonies

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    Last Saturday I went to the opening of ceremonies for the CAA Winter Festival of Lights. It is the first time I’ve ever been. I spoke to my wife about it earlier in the week, and we thought our kids would enjoy seeing Mickey and Minnie Mouse, as well as Greg Frewin, so we made the trek down. The ceremony was about an hour long. It doesn’t sound that long, but for the kids, it was an eternity. They enjoyed some of the songs and dancers, but they certainly didn’t understand why there were people standing at the podium every few minutes speaking for a minute. Ultimately they really enjoyed themselves. My sons were thrilled by the fireworks, but my daughter didn’t look at them at all as she couldn’t stop looking at the Disney Princess display 🙂

    Anyway, I took some pictures while I was there. As always, you can see some of the thumbnails below. You can see the rest of the images, along with all of the full size images, in the Winter Festival of Lights in Winter 2010/2011 gallery.

    Note: As of the time of this posting, there are 3,262 images in 255 categories in the Niagara Falls Image Gallery.





    Nice photos of Niagara Falls in Autumn 2010

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    Yesterday I walked along the Niagara Parkway next to the Falls and in Queen Victoria Park. I took a bunch of pictures. It was overcast, so the sky doesn’t look great, but the colours of the leaves look good. I should have probably taken these a couple of weeks ago to get some more leaves on the trees, but I just didn’t think about it. Unfortunately, in the last couple of weeks we’ve had a lot of wind, so most of the leaves are off the trees now.

    You can see some of the thumbnails below, and the full versions in the Niagara Falls in Autumn 2010 gallery.

    Note: There were 3,241 images in 254 galleries/categories in the Niagara Falls Image Gallery at the time they were posted.




    Screenshots from “Greg Frewin Magic Man Home for the Holidays” 2009 TV Special

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    I’m closer to Christmas 2010 than to Christmas 2009, but hey, better late than never…

    As many of you know, Greg Frewin had a Christmas special broadcast on CBC last December. It was called Greg Frewin Magic Man Home For The Holidays. The show was an hour long and chronicled his planning of an outdoor winter performance at Table Rock Place.

    I love to see Greg Frewin perform, so for that reason, I enjoyed the show. You saw him do several magic tricks or illusions during his stage show, in a classroom, in a restaurant, and outside. He is an amazing performer. On the other hand, it was supposed to be like a documentary or a “reality” show, and it just looked bad in the parts that were staged. There was one scene that was shot inside Elements restaurant at Table Rock Place that was particularly fake.

    The bottom line, though, is that it is always good to see Niagara Falls promoted in such a positive way. I hope it helped Greg’s business this year!

    I have taken a bunch of screenshots from the episode. You can see some of the thumbnails below, and the full versions in the Greg Frewin Magic Man Home For The Holidays (2009 TV Special) gallery.

    Note: There were 3,204 images in 251 galleries in the Niagara Falls Image Gallery at the time they were posted.






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