John E. has joined the virtual crew. He and his family are just getting into boating, and our crew introduced them to America’s Great Loop while in Pittsburgh. Welcome aboard!
Last week the crew had stopped in Point Pleasant to learn more about Mothman. On the travels down river this week, the skipper was on the lookout for Mothman. At one point, he actually thought he saw the strange bird like man, until he got a little closer.
The crew may have only travelled four days this week, but they packed the days with friends, new and old. On Monday, they travelled to the home town of Rosemary Clooney in Augusta. On Tuesday, they travelled to Cincinnati and met up with the crew of Chasing 80 for a Jimmy Buffett concert. On Wednesday, they spent the day with the crew of Long Recess and got a tour of the greater Cincinnati area. On Thursday, the crew made a lunch stop in Rising Sun, then proceeded down river to Florence where Roger Cann came aboard for the night. On Friday, they made a long cruise so they would arrive in Louisville for the weekend.
To see more detail of each days travel, click on the link: Still Waters II Travel Map and view the Captain’s Log, pictures along the days route, and a short narrative of the day’s observations. The Travel Map also has a feature where you can follow the daily voyage updates. From the Travel Map site, just click on the menu, then click follow, and add your first name and email to the pop up box. You will receive an email each day the crew travels and updates the map.
The crew skipped Augusta on the up bound run because there was a Stern Wheeler Tour Boat taking up much of the dock. However, the crew had several recommendations that suggested they should stop on the way back down. The crew was pleasantly surprised by the little town with a big heart. The first thing to catch their eye were two houses overlooking the town public dock. The white house was home to Rosemary Clooney, now the Rosemary Clooney Museum. She is probably best remembered as Betty in the Musical White Christmas, alongside Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, and Vera-Ellen.
Rosemary was born and raised just a little up river in the town of Maysville. You may recall the Maysville Flood Wall Mural project, well Rosemary’s Mural was the last one completed in Maysville back in September 2007. The mural honors moments from her life, friendship with Blanche Chambers, and her singing career.
Another recommendation, from several people, was to eat at the General Store. So, the crew hiked up the road to find the General Store for supper. Another pleasant surprise: one of the best chicken fried steaks ever, with a side of coconut cream pie and blackberry cobbler.
The town had many beautiful backyard gardens. Here is just one of many:
The crew learned via the grapevine along the river that the first concert post pandemic in Cincinnati would be Jimmy Buffett. The concert was scheduled at the Riverbend Music Center, just three miles from where the crew had planned to dock at 4 Seasons. The crew also got an invite from a seasoned Jimmy Buffett concert goer, 53 concerts under his belt, to come raft up to Chasing 80 for the concert.
The crew saw Chasing 80 at anchor by the concert venue when they passed by on the way to the marina. The skipper hailed Chasing 80 and let them know that they would return after getting checked in at the marina. Once at the marina, a tsunami of all storms hit the radar so the crew set tight and let the last storm of the day wash on by. Once the coast was clear, the crew shoved off the dock and laid down a track to Chasing 80. Upon arrival, the crew rafted up to Chasing 80 and caught up with Jill and Kevin.
The two crews had last seen each other last summer on the Tennessee River. Jill and Kevin then sat down to enjoy their customary cheeseburger in paradise before the concert began. The skipper wanted to know if their cheeseburgers were:
Medium rare with muenster’d be nice
Heaven on earth with an onion slice
I like mine with lettuce and tomato
Heinz 57 and French fried potatoes
Big kosher pickle and a cold draft beer
Well, good god almighty, which way do I steer….
The concert got started about 8 and lasted about 2.5 hours. There were just over 30 boats anchored in the area, all were having a good time listening to the tunes. This photo was taken by a drone by the road crew during the concert and showed up on a live you tube stream.
The concert ended with Margaritaville, well until the three song encore really completed the concert.
After the concert it was time to navigate back 3 miles in the dark. However, about the time the crew was ready to go an up bound and a down bound tow arrived. The skipper waited and allowed them both to pass before shoving off. He then followed the down bound tow back to the marina because the tow was using his search beacon to light up the waterway. The crew got back to the marina about midnight. Time to turn in and get ready for some visitors at noon.
The crew of Long Recess, Karen and Tony, have scheduled their Loop departure for September 2021. They came by Still Waters II with a list of questions seeking answers to help them prepare for their launch. Our crew was more than happy to help Long Recess in their Great Loop Quest. After several hours of conversation, the four headed to the Boathouse Restaurant for dinner and more Q&A. Then Tony and Karen gave our crew a tour of Cincinnati while on the hunt for Grater’s Ice Cream. A great way to cap off a two day stay in Cincinnati.
Speaking of caps, the skipper also scored a Pittsburgh Pirates and a Cincinnati Reds ice cream helmet at Graters to add to his ever growing collection of ball park memories.
The crew returned to Louisville with the goal to get out to Church Hill Downs. They found Trolley de Ville which gives a 90 minute tour of Louisville, with a stop at Church Hill Downs. While touring around town they learned how the town got its start.
The only waterfall to obstruct water traffic on the Ohio River was found here at Louisville. It was a 26 foot drop over 2 miles of rapids. Pioneers and later commercial traffic would stop along the banks, unload their boats, portage the boat over or around the falls, and then reload their gear. This obviously took some time and effort. The town sprang up at the Falls to support the pioneers and commercial traffic navigate this natural barrier.
The tour went through a neighborhood of historic Victorian homes. The tour guide said it was the largest collection of Victorian homes in one neighborhood in the US. They were very spectacular.
The crew finally arrived at Churchill Downs, the home of the Kentucky Derby. While looking around the skipper watched a recording of the 2021 race and captured this photo finish. The tour guide mentioned that an all day seat at the Derby costs $4,000. This spot in the museum was free, and even got an up close view of the finish.
And speaking of winners, did you know that at the Galt House Hotel that they enshrine the jockey winners of the Kentucky Derby by dedicating their hand prints, name, and a rose around this statue.
While the skipper was learning the finer points of horse racing, the Admiral was busy shopping for a derby hat.
And what would a day at the derby be without trying a Mint Julep.
While returning back to downtown the crew began noticing more and more horse statues. The public art displays are part of Gallopalooza: Louisville’s Sidewalk Derby. To date they have conducted three Derby’s, 2004, 2009, and 2015 which have resulted in more than 500 horses scattered about town. They have also added large Mint Julep’s to the art work. The link Gallopalooza – Brightside Foundation will take you to a galley of the art work that makes up the Sidewalk Derby. The skipper snapped a few shots of the horses and a Mint Julep.
Louisville is an interesting town and the crew are glad they stopped and checked it out. Maybe you should consider adding Louisville to your Bucket List.
The crew will depart Louisville on Monday and try to make some long cruise days to get back to the Cumberland River by weeks end and hopefully arrive back at Green Turtle Bay for the weekend.