Scuba Santa's Water Wonderland Newport, KY

Newport Aquarium invites the public to experience a Cincinnati holiday tradition under the sea Nov. 24 - Dec. 31 at Scuba Santa’s Water Wonderland.

Scuba Santa Newport Aquarium

Since 2003 Scuba Santa has been delighting children in Northern Kentucky with tons of bubbles, and lots of fun. My girl gets shy talking to Scuba Santa, but has a blast with Tinsel the Elf, you must find him if you visit! 



The Water Wonderland journey will also take guests through a number of holiday-clad galleries, culminating in a truly wondrous experience where families connect and interact with the magic of an undersea holiday celebration:


  Stingray Hideaway Newport Aquarium

Stingray Hideaway New in 2017, visit the tropical paradise getaway where Scuba Santa goes to relax after the busy holiday season. His elves are already there decorating with festive tropical decor ready to meet and greet guests in Stingray Hideaway. Plus, guests can interact with and touch two dozen stingrays in the 17,000-gallon stingray touchpool, while enjoying the tropical holiday oasis.



Holiday Wishes to Santa Penguin Palooza

After chasing the swimming penguins back and forth, have giggle of fun, our girl drew a wish on a magic bubble and mailed it to Scuba Santa's Post Office. 


Newport Aquarium Penguin Palooza

She also enjoyed getting up close with these guys, they're just so cute! 



PS. While you're visiting Scuba Santa. Did you know you could Buy 3, Get 1 FREE during their annual pass sale? In time for the holidays, guests who purchase three Newport Aquarium Annual Passes will receive a fourth Annual Pass free. The Annual Pass Holiday Special ends on Dec. 31. Annual Passes are valid for one year from the date of purchase, so guests can use them now to experience Scuba Santa’s Water Wonderland and into next year, including a VIP Passholder-only preview party for the opening of the new Ring of Fire exhibit in March.



Truth in Review: Newport Aquarium provided us with tickets for our review. We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review.  All reviews posted by us are truthful in content and not bought. Gabe & Gabreial Wyatt 

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclosure Page for more info

The Illusionists Live from Broadway Cincinnati ends tonight! March 26, 2017

Don't miss your opportunity to see The Illusionists Live From Broadway Cincinnati! This show closes today March 26, 2017 Tickets are available for 1:00 and 6:00pm tonight! 

The Illusionists Live from Broadway Cincinnati

The Illusionists whisks your mind away to a place it's never been before. The high energy, entertaining two hour show is mind bending, baffling, and downright crazy. You've got to see it for yourself to believe it. The show is  interactive with the crowd, and keeps you involved and entertained from the start.

I recommend taking your kids 6+ older to this show if they can handle suspense, and sometimes eye covering acts that could be a bit much for the squeamish. 

Kevin James The Inventor in The Illusionists Live
Kevin James The Inventor Production photos of The Illusionists—Live From Broadway

Kevin James The Inventor above, has a child-like way with magic. He enjoys seeing the joy and disbelief of his audience and captures your attention with amazing feats of things happening right before your eyes.

He brought a little girl from the audience to capture her imagination, and amazed the entire crowd. He doesn't stop though with innocent illusions. he cuts a man in half. A classic that will leave you questioning everything. 

Dan Sperry (The Anti-Conjuror) in The Illusionists—Live From Broadway
Dan Sperry (The Anti-Conjuror) in The Illusionists—Live From Broadway

Dan Sperry, The Anti-Conjuror brings his dry sense of humor, and his mysterious illusions to some of the classics of magic. His performance includes a rabbit, and some birds in his very own special way. He also performs some interesting illusions with his body that had me holding my hands over my face, and peeking through my fingers. Each time, bringing my jaw to a gaping hole of mystery. 

Colin Cloud (The Deductionist) in The Illusionists—Live From Broadway
Colin Cloud (The Deductionist) in The Illusionists—Live From Broadway

Lastly for my review, I'm highlighting Colin Cloud The Deductionist. Another favorite of mine and my husbands. We aren't quite sure how he does it, but he involves the entire audience into a mind-bending performance that questions your educational abilities on every level.

His way with numbers, and reading people is something you've only seen in the movies. I'm glad that we got to experience this live and in person. I only wish that our teens were able to join us for the show. They would have been amazed. 


Don't wait! Today, and this evening are your last chance to see The Illusionists Live on Broadway at the beautiful Aronoff Center in downtown Cincinnati. 



Procter & Gamble Hall - Aronoff Center for the Arts

650 Walnut Street Cincinnati, OH

SUNDAY 03/26 1:00PM  
SUNDAY 03/26 6:30PM  

Find Tickets

Truth in Review: Cincinnati on Broadway provided us with tickets for our review. We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review.  All reviews posted by us are truthful in content and not bought. Gabe & Gabreial Wyatt 

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclosure Page for more info

Craft Connection Cincinnati Brewery Tour

A Craft Connection Brewery Tour is a great way to spend a few hours learning, and enjoying one of Cincinnati’s (and my) most beloved and historic pastimes. BEER!  Craft Connection Brewery tours offers several tour options for groups of 6-14.

Craft Connection Cincinnati Brewery Tour

3-hour, 3 Brewery Tour: $50/person

3.5-hour, 3 Brewery Tour: $55/person

4-hour, 3 Brewery Tour; $60/person

4-hour, 4 Brewery Tour; $60/person

You may choose one of their public tours, or plan your own.  We opted to plan our own, and filled the bus with beer drinkers (and homebrewers) of every different level and experience.  Whether you’re a seasoned beer geek, or a novice, this guided tour will have plenty of information for you.  Not only will you see the taprooms and behind the bars, but will get an up close look at the brewing, canning, and bottling facilities of each brewery visited.

Craft Connection Tour Guide Megan

When you choose your breweries, keep in mind that drive time to and from your pick/drop location, and time between breweries is part of your tour!  Plan accordingly, and choose breweries that maximize your time drinking beer, and learning!

Craft Connection Brewery Tour Cup

Our tour guide, Megan, picked us up at our home, which is approximately 10 miles south of downtown, and we were able to visit (comfortably) Nine Giant, Rhinegeist, and The Woodburn.  We could tell, immediately, that Megan was knowledgeable and had a good relationship with each brewery as we entered.  Not only did she fulfill our beer requests, but helped us learn about the brewing process, history of the buildings we were in, and styles of the beers we were trying.  We even had the pleasure of having co-owners of two of the breweries we visited leading part of our tour!

The Woodburn Co-owner Dennis Chacón
The Woodburn Co-owner Dennis Chacón

While you’re not sipping delicious brews, and learning about Cincinnati’s rich brewing past, present and future, you’ll get to have a great time on the bus.  Bring along for the ride beer, wine, and cider for enjoying on the bus, just keep it there.  No outside beer is permitted in any of the breweries, and no hard liquor allowed!



                Everything is included in the price of admission, except gratuity for your driver.  Remember to tip well, and often!  Book a tour today, and find out why Craft Connection Brewery Tours is successfully helping grow Cincinnati’s craft beer culture and awareness!  Drink local! Cheers!

Craft Connection Brewery Tour Guide Megan

Want to see more? Check out our video of Nine Giant on our Facebook Vintage Indie.

Discover Dinosaur World Cave City, KY

100_4052 Driving along I-65 S through Kentucky, it’s hard to miss the giant fiberglass dinosaur sitting atop a small hill at Exit 53.  He invites the adventurous driver and family to exit at Cave City, KY and visit Dinosaur World.  Reminiscent of the almost bygone roadside attractions, this is a delight to find along the modern interstate.


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 Opened in June 2003, this location is one of three in the United States.  Glen Rose, TX and Plant City, FL boast the other two, all owned by the same individual, Swedish businessman Christer Svensson.  The main attraction here is the Dinosaur Walk where one will find over 150 life size dinosaurs nestled among trees and other natural vegetation. 
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(pictured right, Mr. Young)
Signs are posted with dinosaur descriptions and facts.  Be sure to walk up the hill beyond the Mammoth Display to have your picture taken with Photosaurus.  Other onsite attractions include a fossil dig, boneyard, indoor museum, movie cave, picnic area, playground and gift shop.  The gift shop offers everything from a 50 cent plastic dinosaur to an authentic dinosaur egg nest for $3600.  Yes, they have sold several, mainly to companies seeking to decorate their offices with that most unusual item. 

Continue reading "Discover Dinosaur World Cave City, KY " »

Family Friendly Destination Hocking Hills State Park: Cabins by the Caves


Cabins by the Caves  - the Lincoln Cabin 

Traveling to Hocking Hills is one of my favorite drives from Northern Kentucky. We usually take the scenic route and travel through Washington Court House and Circleville, OH.

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During our trip late in the evening, it was refreshing to hear my phone ring and hear from the owner of Cabins by the Caves. She gave us a call to make sure we were OK and to let us know that she had left the porch light on for us. How often does tour hotel call to check on you to make sure you're O.K.? That's the kind of hospitality that I look forward to when traveling.


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If you're like our family, traveling with small children can feel like you've packed a weeks worth  of work into one day of preparation. No matter how much you've planned, you almost feel like there is never enough time. When you truly want to get away, Cabins by the Caves' Lincoln Cabin gives weekend of  true peace and quiet. Check in was at 3:00, but we didn't make it in until late Friday evening. All of our photos are from Sunday around 11:00 during check out time. Some of the beds aren't made up, as we stripped them for cleaning.  

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This was the kitchen. Big enough for our family of five to sit at the table and enjoy a family dinner. My favorite part, the dishwasher! Who wants to wash dishes on vacation with your children. It is the little things in life, isn't it? Most importantly, above everything else in the kitchen, is that it was clean. The oven, sinks, refrigerator, and toaster oven were all very clean. That is important to us when we're traveling. 

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The rooms were very spacious and fit all of us very well. This cabin is 3 bedrooms and two baths, sleeps 8 with 3 queen sized beds and two twins. My boys wanted to "camp out" in the same room so they chose this one with the queen and two twins. 

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Same room, different view. 

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Another spacious 2nd floor bedroom. Single queen bed. 

(We didn't use this room)

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1st floor bedroom, queen bed. Sorry for the dark photo. All of our luggage and everything was in this room.  The beds were firm and comfortable. I truly enjoyed that there were plenty of  blankets. I get so cold while everyone is hot. 


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Upstairs bathroom. Clean, clean, clean! I love it when you stay somewhere and the shower is inviting, and the toilets and sink are clean. 

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1st Floor Bathroom. It was also clean, clean, clean! 


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Although there was a lovely fire pit outside, with the baby and the chilly evening we decided after a long day of hiking that we would build a fire inside. The boys didn't miss out on roasting hot dogs or marshmallows for s'mores. Wood is provided dry and in bundles for you for $6.00 if you forget to bring your own. 

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Finished Basement with a Foosball table was a big hit. The kids absolutely loved having their own space. We brought a couple of parent approved movies for them and they spent most of their time, when we weren't outdoors, in the basement playing with the foosball table. We even had a few kid/parent challenges. The noise from the basement was rather quiet. My husband and I were quite surprised on how quiet it seemed when the kids were playing.


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When baby decided to take a nap and the boys were happily playing, hubby and I caught a few minutes in the hot tub. There is nothing like warm bubbles and a cool spring breeze to sooth your spirit. I only wish we had more time!

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Last but not least; the cozy living room in the Lincoln cabin. Perfect for cuddling by the fire.



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Our minivan made it up the secluded driveway just fine, but if it were to rain or snow we may have struggled a bit. We suggest 4 wheel drive or all wheel drive if it is a winter season.


It seems that Cabins by the Caves has thought of everything in the Lincoln cabin. We didn't find ourselves needing much of anything. We thought the utensils could use updating, but there were plenty of appliances, blender, coffee maker, toaster oven, and pots and pans. We prefer cast iron in our house, so I usually travel with our own skillet.  Overall we loved our stay at the Lincoln cabin and hope to make it up there again.




Truth in Review: The owner of this cabin, provided us with our stay in exchange for our review.  We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacations, and find the right place for you and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial Wyatt, Editor in chief. 

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclosure Page for more info




Amazing waffles, but so much more at The Taste of Belgium

Taste of Belgium Date Night

It isn't date day until you take a table-side selfie right? That right there is my better half #theabeardedhunk (look him up on Instagram). We like to do date "days" instead of night quite often if we can get them. We find that we can hit up lunch menus to save on our bill, and enjoy some time away together without being exhausted, if you know what I mean. #thirtiesproblems

We recently hit up a new to us spot, The Taste of Belgium at Rookwood. 3825 Edwards Road. Cincinnati, OH 45209. It's across the street from Rookwood Commons. Taste of Belgium is known for their waffles, and rightly so; they're delicious. Crunchy on the outside, and soft and fluffy on the inside. What started as a 120lb cast iron waffle maker, touted all the way from Jean-François Flechet's hometown in Belgium, is now a successful group of Belgian-inspired eateries.  

We've tasted the fluffy goodness a few times during our visits to Findlay Market. This time however, we branched out and tried a few new things at this swanky location. 

Taste of Belgium Rookwood

My craft beer enthused husband was impressed with the taps at Taste of Belgium, and I was impressed with all of the specialty drinks they offer. From cocktails, to specialty espresso sips and wines, they have just about anything you could want to drink. You can tell from the details in the setup of the restaurant and the food flying out of the kitchen, that quality is important here. From our seat, we watched as the chefs, and line cooks were adding final details to plates. Each one seemed to have been checked over with care. 

Taste of Belgium Crepes

This was my vegetarian crepe, with roasted red peppers, spinach, goat cheese, balsamic glaze. It was gooey in the the middle, and the veggies were perfectly crunchy. If you're gluten free, they offer those as well. 

Taste of Belgium Goetta Hash

This was hubby's choice, Goetta Hash. He enjoyed it very much and said he would get it again. It smelled absolutely delicious, and this veggie loving momma, may or may not have tasted a small bite of goetta. 

Taste of Belgium Rookwood

Sitting directly in front of us, was their market, filled with fresh waffles, pastries and delicious macarons. If you have any room left after that hash, you might have a hard time decided what to indulge in. Everything looked so good. 

As far as date days go, this is a hot spot, and a great place to unwind and reconnect. Our server was on the ball, and didn't miss a beat. The place was buzzing with people in and out, and though it was busy, we felt cozy and comfortable. The decor and brightness of this location are top notch, you just feel good while you're there. If dining alfresco is your thing, they also boast a nice outdoor seating area with umbrellas. Let us know if you've ever been to Taste of Belgium, and if you dared to branch out from those tasty waffles, we need help decided what to order next time we go.




Start a new tradition! The Great Pumpkin Fest at Kings Island!


If you're looking to start a new family tradition, why not check out The Great Pumpkin Fest at Kings Island. Aside from all of the fantastic rides and games at Kings Island, you can visit the Great Pumpkin Fest over at Soak City.  You will get more bang for your buck when Soak City closes for the winter season, just by attending this event.  

Great Pumpkin Fest Kings Island

The Great Pumpkin Fest presented by Hershey™ and Kroger® is just a hop and a skip from Plant Snoopy, past Snoopy's Barnyard Friends Petting Farm. You can also get there by taking the train. 

Snoopys Barnyard Friends Petting Zoo

Great Pumpkin Fest Kings Island
Follow the signs to the Great Pumpkin Fest

The Great Pumpkin Fest activities start at noon and last until 6pm. Be sure to pick up a map when you arrive, as there are so many activities to do once you get there. Follow the Candy Corn on the map and you can search for treats at candy stops located throughout. Visit the pumpkins on the map for other Great Pumpkin Fest activities. 

The Great Talking Pumpkin
Sit down and have a talk with The Great Talking Pumpkin

Beginning at 2:00pm every Saturday & Sunday join Lucy's Holiday Fashion Show an Costume Contest. Another great event to get one more use out of that costume! 

Great Pumpkin Fest Kings Island

The Great Party Zone is loaded with singing and dancing fun. Join Snoopy, Charlie Brown and other members of the PEANUTS™ gang. 

The Great Party Zone Kings Island
Dance and sing at the Live Party Zone


Great Pumkin Fest

Follow the sign for so many activities. Peppermint Patty's Tall Tales is a great show and story time. Visit this at 1:00, 2:00, 3:30 and 4:30.

Great Pumpkin Fest Kings Island

Check out the Linus' Labyrinth and see if you can make your way through the maze. 

Kings Island Great Pumpkin Fest

Franklin's Game Zone Kings Island

If you like games, Franklin's Game Zone is just another fun activity for you and your family. Kids will love testing their skills at all of the carnival themed games. 

Great Pumpkin Fest Kings Island

The Great Pumpkin Fest is sure to be a fit for your whole family. It's a great way to slow down just a bit at the park for some great family photo opportunities, and a non-scary way for families to trick or treat.

Keep in mind that Halloween Haunt is Not Recommended for children. The rides and attractions in Planet Snoopy begin to close at 5pm on Saturdays transforming the park. We visited on a Sunday and there were a few decorations throughout the park, but they're open until 7pm and none of the highly graphic stuff comes out on Sunday. 

Have a great time, and if you go, please use #vintageindie on Instagram, I want to see how much fun you had! 


Disclaimer: Thank you to Kings Island for providing the tickets for our recent visit. As with all of our reviews here at Vintage Indie, the opinions expressed are our own, and can not be purchased. We find it very important to bring you truthful as well as informative travel reviews. 

Alice & Wonderland The Musical with the Cincinnati Children's Theatre: Enter to Win!

With my oldest child turning fifteen, I'm a beliver in more memories and less stuff more than ever before. We still have a preschooler, who has too much stuff. Don't get me wrong we're still working on it.

The older two have too much stuff as well, and I find them downsizing the junk when they start to get overwhelmed.  If you were to sit down and talk with them about their favorite things, they'll more than likely tell you about a trip we took, or an event we attended. They both have fond memories of visiting the Cincinnati Children's Theatre, and still like it as a teen and pre-teen. Now they're excited to take along their little sister, and see how she reacts to the scenes unfolding. 

Since 1924 The Cincinnati Children's Theatre has been aiming to bring smiles and the wonders of the theatre to children across the Greater Cincinnati Area. To kick of their season, they're bringing Alice in Wonderland to the Main Stage at Taft Theatre! Bring your kids to explore their first show of the season, with Alice and all of her friends. 

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Create memories to last a lifetime, and introduce them to the kid-friendly performaces that The Children's Theatre works so hard to bring you. 

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ALICE IN WONDERLAND begins the 2016-2017 season at The Children’s Theatre of Cincinnati, October 15-23, 2016. Saturday October 15 at 2 PM; Sunday October 16 at 2 PM and 5PM; Friday October 21 at 7:30 PM; Saturday October 22 at 2 PM and 5 PM; and Sunday October 23 at 2 PM at the Taft Theatre, 5th and Sycamore Streets in Downtown Cincinnati.

Purchase your Tickets $10-30 by calling 1-800-745-3000 or visiting Tickets are selling as fast as the White Rabbit!


or Enter to Win a pair of vouchers right here on Vintage Indie! (Thanks to The Children's Theatre for the giveaway vouchers)



a Rafflecopter giveaway


Congratulations to Candy Burns! She is our winner! 






Disclaimer:  I was provided with tickets for my family in exchange for promotional purposes as well as ticket for the winner.  All opinions are my own.  

Fun in the sun with teens at The Beach Waterpark!

Sunday was an absolutely gorgeous day here in Mason, Ohio. The sun was shining, there was hardly any humidity, and the sky was full of beautiful blue and white fluffy clouds. It couldn't have been more perfect. Oh waitt, yes it was. We spent the day at The Beach Waterpark with our two kids and their friends. 

The Beach Waterpark Summer 2016

It has been years, I'm talking 15 years or so since I've made it back to The Beach Waterpark. When we arrived memories of The Cliff, started filling my head, as I remembered when I was just fourteen taking my first ride down the five story thrill seeking slide. I rememberd the wave of adreneline, and was really excited to see my kids take a turn. 

The Cliff at the Beach Waterpark


The crowds were fantastic all day long. A slow and steady stream of swimmers, and thrill seekers spent the day exploring, and relaxing. The waits for each ride were under five minutes all day. My husband and I found ourselves spending most of our time in the Kokomo Lazy River. A 1200 foot long relaxing tube adventure, slow enough to soak in some vitamin d, while enjoying a few splashes along the way.

  Lazy River at The Beach Waterpark

Lazy River at The Beach Waterpark

We found ourselves seperated from the older guys most of the day, and felt the atmosphere and crowd was very mellow. We really enjoyed the fact that the rides were fairly close to each other so there wasn't loads of walking on hot concrete from one attraction to the next. The Big Surf Wave Pool, was a short distance from The Cliff. The  750,000 Gallons zero depth entry pool, was a hit with The Beach goers. Plenty of lounch chairs, cabanas and shaded umbrella spots were available for anyone who wanted to catch some rays by the sun. Hubby and I spent a little time here, listening to the live band that played on the stage at Sunset Beach. Here you can find yourself relaxing, and sipping on a wide selection of draft craft beers. 

 The Big Surf Wave Pool

   The Big Surf Wave Pool
Craft Beer at The Beach Waterpark

The Beach Waterpark

Pricing for food and beer was comparable if not less than other large amusement parks in the area. The dollar hot-dogs were a hit with our guys during the 2:00-4:00 special. Be sure to catch that if you can when you're there, it is near the Sunset Beach stage.

  Lazy River at The Beach Waterpark

We didn't have our little one in tow with us on this visit, but we hope to bring her next time. There was quite a few things for her to do and explore. The Big Creek beach is full of water-splashing fun including a  600-gallon dump bucket, and three slides for their excitement. There is also a 1ft pool at the Lil’ Kahunas Waterworks. Plenty of sprays, fountains and geysyers for getting wet. 

  The Beach Waterpark

We thoroughly enjoyed our visit to The Beach Waterpark, and plan to visit again next year with our friends.  While looking like an older park, for me it added to the nostalgia, and our youngest son commented on the fact, that it feel like he was in a different time period there. More carnival-like he said, but to him that just added to the charm of it all. 

  Sunset Grill The Beach Waterpark

Volleyball Court The Beach Waterpark

Disclaimer: Thank you to The Beach Waterpark for providing the tickets for our recent visit. As with all of our reviews here at Vintage Indie, the opinions expressed are our own, and can not be purchased. We find it very important to bring you truthful as well as imformative travel reviews. 





Kings Island with Teens and Tweens

Kings Island, why did I wait so long to come and visit you? The last time my family and I visited Kings Island, was when my now 14 year old was in a stroller! Can you belive that? I'm so excited to share our recent expirence with you, because so much has changed since those days. 

If you've never been, "Kings Island is located 21 miles north of Cincinnati off Interstate 71. The park's more than 100 world-class rides, shows and attractions are located within a two-hour drive of Columbus, OH, Indianapolis, IN, Louisville and Lexington, KY, and within five hours of cities like Chicago, IL, Detroit, MI, Pittsburgh, PA and Charleston, WV" So what's your excuse? 



This is us minus #thebeardedhunk who was driving. Kings Island or bust. I think I was more excited to head to Kings Island than these guys, our two sons and their friends. I was determined to get a full day in, no matter what the weather brought us. It was hot, really hot.

We filled up on breakfast before we left, so we could dive right in when we arrived. I also armed myself with some pain reliver, because you know roller coasters

So when we arrived we decided to hit up a new to us roller coaster, the Diamondback. "Diamondback is a high-speed steel roller coaster with a combination of banked turns and airtime humps." All I could say when we got off was WOW! I can't believe how smooth this ride is, I can't wait to do it again. Seriously though, it was so smooth and I didn't need anything for my typical roller coaster headache! 



We decided (well mostly I talked them into it) that we should head to White Water Canyon since it was so close. My thoughts were, we would get wet, and that would help keep us cool the rest of the day. For me, it was perfect, I got fully soaked except for my shoes! Everyone else wasn't so lucky, but none the less, it was a relaxing five minutes and we had fun getting wet. 


This is my sweet little family. Those brave younger guys decided they would go on Firehawk, and they couldn't talk me into it. I mean you're basically hanging and FLYING!

"Firehawk is a flying roller coaster where riders experience three (3) inversions in a face-down position. Riders will experience high speeds, weightlessness, and rapid movements from side-to-side. A shoulder harness secures each rider over the shoulders and across the chest" So lucky them, the first time for my youngest son to ever ride roller coasters or the Firehawk, he and big brother rode on the front car! The very first one! There was no way this momma was riding on that, I mean I still have a sweet little girl at home. 

Fast forward a few hours later, and it was probably my most favorite ride of the day. I don't think I've ever experinced anything like it. Nope, nada. If you go to Kings Island this smooth, and thrilling coaster must be on the top of your list. I'm so glad they talked me into riding it. I especially love that we have this fun memory together. Teens are so awesome! 


The day couldn't have been more perfect. The crowds weren't bad, and the lines were almost non existant. I highly suggest going on a weekday! We headed to Soak City, Kings Island's waterpark for a few hours around 4:00. Most folks were packing up, headed out of there for dinner.  We had a blast on all of the water slides. My favorite is always the slides with tubes. 

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#thebeardedhunk and me. 

 "Soak City is the premier waterpark in the region. Families can splish, splash and laugh on more than 50 water activities, including 36 water slides, tropical lagoons, rushing rivers, and surfable waves including a 650,000-gallon wave pool, Tidal Wave Bay. Soak City is included with park admission to Kings Island."



After that, we headed back to Kings Island for about five trips in the Dodgem cars, and many more coasters! Who doesn't love a good bumper car ride! It was especially fun chasing all these guys around. For dinner we headed to Festhaus to get some pizza for our gluten free friend, and some regular pizza for the rest of the gang. Me, I ate Coney Potato Works, A.L.L. D.A.Y. yeah, snacks, dinner, all day. What can I say, I'm a sucker for fresh cut fries, and malt vinegar, my favorite! 

Helpful Tip: Coney Potato Works is GLUTEN FREE! 
"This GLUTEN-FREE location offers gluten-free fresh cut fries, gluten-free chicken tenders, gluten-free hand-dipped corndogs, gluten-free soft serve ice cream cones and some gluten-free beer choices" Say what?



The night ended where it started with one last magical trip on the Diamondback just as the sun was setting. It was gorgeous looking over the whole park with the beautiful sunset from the top of  Diamonback's hill. It was the perfect end to the most perfect day. #thebearded hunk and I had a blast with all of these gentlemen who hung out with the parents all day. I was so happy to have been able to go with them, and create some super great memories. I hope we can head back next year for a Firehawk marathon, and some fries, yes, more fries please! 


Oh, PS. when we were there, they told us they were unveiling a new ride that Thursday! I'm happy to report Mystic Timbers a new wooden roller coaster is set to open summer 2017! Take a look at this preview, it looks like so much fun! #whatsintheshed  




Family Travel: Ravenwood Castle New Plymouth, Ohio

 Disclosure: A special thank you to Ravenwood Castle for providing a room for our review. As always here at Vintage Indie, all opinions are our own, and have not been purchased. 


Upon arrival, the castle was bustling with guests arriving. This was our first time to stay at a bed and breakfast setting, as well as staying in the castle itself.

Upon checking in and meeting owners Jim and Pam Reed, we were greeted by Inn Keeper Sam. Sam had a great welcoming spirit about her and gave us a quick rundown about
breakfast, our rooms and key procedures for the castle.


Our room was the Queen Elizabeth room. When you open the door, you travel back in time,with emerald green walls, lavish antique furniture and a cozy fireplace. the room and restroom was exceptionally clean. The linens, freshly pressed and the towel fluffed. The queen beed was very comfortable and the blankets and sheets soft.




We were excited to see what new owners Jim and Pam, had done with the castle since our last visit, and decided to leave our room shortly after arriving and went for a stroll with Jim. After
spending some time touring the grounds and Pub with Jim, we could tell that the couple was proud of their new investment and have painstakingly taken the time to make the castle even better than

We opted out of the buffet for dinner, as we have a favorite place to visit when we are in town, however after speaking with some of the guests, they enjoyed the food and stated they would come back in the future for the food and rooms.


The Reeds are expanding the cabins/cottages on the property to make the rentals more family friendly. They've added the Huntsman Hollow which includes new cabins that sleep 4 comfortably, 6 total, if you have children who would enjoy a loft setting.

They've updated the pub and the beer menu was carefully selected to appeal to the tastes of craft beef connoisseurs. My IPA loving husband was thrilled with some of their hard to find selections.

After dinner, we arrived back go to the castle and visited their game selection which is a big part of the fun at the castle. if you are a board game enthusiast, you will love the wide offerings. There are
games like Ticket to ride, Fantasy, card games and our favorite Croakanol. We met another couple, who were visiting from Pittsburg that was also celebrating their wedding anniversary, and stayed up late challenging each other to a team match of our new favorite game.


Our one night stay ended with a delicious breakfast of fresh fruits, juices,hot coffee, corned beef breakfast hash and Linda's famous cinnamon rolls.


We can't wait to return to Ravemwood castle. The Reeds have many plans to make the castle better than ever, including an event/business room for corporate events. As well as remodeling the bar in the Pub and including the addition of a childrens play area.

If you are looking for a unique and quiet stay away, we think you will love the Ravenwood Castle, the hospitality of the delightful staff and the relaxing getaway. Besides, who doesn't love the idea of staying in a castle! If you are looking for an extra special reason to visit, the event pland for the year include, a Father's Day bbq.


Disclosure:  Thank you to Ravenwood Castle for the room in 2014.  As always the content and opinions are my own.

Family Travels: Virginia Beach No Worries Be Happy Duplex Vacation Rental

  The following is a review from our recent stay at No Worries Be Happy Duplex. 

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Nestled perfectly between Chesapeake Bay Beach and the 200 ft walk to the public access is the No Worries, Be Happy Duplex. An older vacation home, this is one of those places that location, neighbors and local finds is what makes it an ideal spot for families.

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To the left of the blue house you see in the photo is the access to the beach. 

If you're looking for bells and whistles, elevators and a crowded "party" beach, this is not the place for you. Like most places the VI family visits, we pack a crate full of our own utensils, spices, coffee and some food we prepare ahead of time. This saves on costs, and we feel more at home on vacation with our own stuff. The Duplex provided dishes, pots, pans, and the usual appliances any home would have i.e. oven, refrigerator, coffee maker, dishwasher, washer and dryer.

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 We enjoyed the easy walk to the beach, even with baby and all of the kids gear in tow. The duplex housed a shed with additional chairs, boogie boards, and other beach odds and ends. We brought our own umbrella which was much needed and not provided by duplex. There was also an outdoor shower to rinse off the sand from a long day at the beach. 

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Dining Room (washer and dryer are behind the white doors)

Unlike the hustle and bustle of the Virginia Strip Beach, the beach at No Worries, Be Happy Duplex is was what made this a perfect spot in the Virginia Beach area for our family. The locals were friendly, the beach was not crowded when we were there, and the view was wonderful.

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After a day at the beach it was nice to retreat to the duplex to shower, and get a restful nights sleep in the comfortable king bedroom. The mattress and sheets were some of the most comfortable I've ever slept on. The kids slept in the only other bedroom in a queen/bunk bed duo. They didn't have any complaints.

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Wireless was a great edition for us since we aren't the "plugged-in" all of the time type of folks, after-all it is vacation, but it proved to be helpful for perusing Urbanspoon and the like for restaurant reviews and grocery stores.

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Overall, the duplex was a great place to stay. We've noted a few things to the owners Mark and Doug  that we think could be improved upon, and hope they consider making a few small changes for future guests. However, Mark and Doug were very hospitable, helpful with the local places to see and visit, and available if we needed anything from them.  They each stopped by to meet us in person, a first for a Vintage Indie travel review, and much appreciated.




If you're interested in visiting No Worries, Be Happy Duplex, please visit their wesbite for further details, videos and helpful information in booking your next vacation with them. 


Truth in Review: This stay was a (press trip) We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacations, and find the right place for you and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial Wyatt, Editor in chief. 

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclosure Page for more info

Family Travels/Teach Me: Huntsville, AL Homes with Character

If you're looking to add an unexpected educational bonus to a road trip, why not search out historic districts in the nearby towns you are visiting. On our recent trip to Huntsville, Alabama we decided to take a ride through the many historic homes there. We learned a lot of unexpected history along the way and enjoyed the many beautiful homes. 

Take a ride with me as we rediscover the historic homes of Huntsville, AL. 

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Click image to enlarge. 

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Click image to enlarge.

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We'd love t0 know about the historic homes or districts in your neck of the woods. Feel free to leave them in the comments area below. 

What are some other ways you learn for free while traveling?



Family Travels: Sam & Greg's Pizzeria & Gelateria Huntsville, AL

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If you are cruising downtown Huntsville Alabama, and starting to get hungry, Sam & Greg's is the place to go. They're serving up fresh hot pizza and homemade gelato! 
" North Side of the Courthouse Square in Huntsville, AL. Our building has been here since the early 1800's as part of Huntsville's original Courthouse square. It has been a general store, a ladies dress shop, a gallery, and finally a coffee shop." - Sam & Greg's

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Sam & Greg's is one of those places where you can appreciate the quirkiness of the decor, and the atmosphere of a trendy espresso shop. Did I mention they also serve up fresh pizza here? 

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Espresso Counter
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Gelato Counter 

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Pizza's start with a hand tossed crust for the kiddos, then sauce  and cheese are added and baked. The fun part? They deliver up the toppings ala cart style ad the kids "create" their own pizza. Our boys seemed to think it was the best thing ever at a pizza restaurant. 
We dove into our adult pizza that included all of the topics baked right in. The pizza was good and hot and satisfied our hungry bellies. I felt the sauce could have used a little more seasoning but over all, not a bad pie. 
Afterwards we ordered up some delicious smooth and creamy homemade gelato made with local farm fresh fruits. 
If you're in Huntsville, be sure to stop by and check out Sam & Greg's we give this a thumbs up for Family Friendly Travel
119 Northside Square  Huntsville, AL 35801
(256) 533-9030

Family Friendly Destinations/Teach Me: Adventure Science Center Nashville, TN

Adventure Science Center

800 Fort Negley Boulevard  Nashville, TN 37203
(615) 862-5160

A couple of months ago, a fellow homeschool mom and friend of ours took us on a road trip with them to visit family in Huntsville, AL. On the way, we decided to take a pit stop in Nashville, TN to visit the Adventure Science Center with our kiddos.

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Vertebrate Stairs

I've learned a lot from my friend about being frugal and one of those things is being sure to take advantage of science center's when you're on vacation. If you already belong to one science center, 9 times out of 10 you'll be able to take advantage of the reciprocal museum program and get into the science centers for free! Who doesn't like free, right. As an added bonus the kids think they're getting a day off from school, but they're learning the whole time! There is a lot to see and explore while you're there, and we suggest 3-5 hours to see everything (not including the planetarium) .

How does it rate? 1-5 ★ Rating Scale

4.5 ★'s 10 Year Old Boy

5 ★'s  Year Old Boy

Highs for them:

 - Huge Tower of science. 

 - A lot of room to get exercise while visiting all the exhibits in the adventure tower. 

 - Lots of things to climb on, through and a 3 story slide! 

 - Space/Moon Walk

 - Star Tunnel

 - Space Exhibit

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Lows for them:

 - There could have been some outside exhibits.

 - Missing outdoor/nature exhibits


Highs for me:

 - Lots of hands on activities to keep two energetic boys very busy for hours.

 - A lot of science jam packed into the center including, space, earth science, sound and light, air and space, health, creativity and innovation, energy and more.

 - On location restaurant (Subway, at the time of our visit, although we didn't get to eat there as they closed before we left)

 - FREE with the reciprocal museum program

 - Comfortable seating for parents while kids explore for hours. 

 - The kids had a blast

 - I also enjoyed the slide, even while pregnant! 

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Lows for me:

 - A couple of the exhibits needed to be updated just a bit as far as the general wear and tear of them.

 - A few of the exhibits were missing clear instructions on what to do to to make the exhibit work.  


All in all it was a fabulous science center. Our family suggests that you check it out the next time you're in Nashville. 


Helpful Links: 

Adventure Science Center

Reciprocal Science Center Listings


We were not paid for any portion of this review/feature. All opinions are our own. Have fun! 

On the Road with The Bellaire's: Fava's Restaurant Georgetown, KY



Georgetown is a small township in the heart of central Kentucky.  This quiet and down to earth community is definitely comfortable and inviting. While taking in the small town feel, classic style architecture, and beautiful natural setting, our visit was like a trip back in time - calming and reflective. Our choice of lunch location was not exclusive to the wonderful feeling of walking the streets of a town plentiful with history. Fava’s diner directly on main street is a retro eatery right out of the 1950s.


With many pictures, articles, and a full wall mural depicting how little Fava’s has changed in the past 40 - 50 years, it was a remarkable and nostalgic to sit and eat in such a simple yet intriguing venue. The history of the diner is around you as you eat. From counter tops to wall decorations and even a vintage Disney collection with Mickey Mouse memorabilia dating back more than 40 years. And after enjoying the food choices we made, it is no wonder they are still in business. Just delicious home cooked meals tat make you feel warm, welcome, and full. And the price was still years old. 3 lunches and dessert with quality and taste, Fava’s is still a value at a time where it is much needed.




I chose the shrimp po boy whole my wife had the patty melt. Both meals were delicious and full of flavor. And our little one, well he had the cheeseburger and fries and he was happy and felt at home. So much so that my family was desperate to try a dessert. And within minutes the butterscotch pie was on the table with only several bites left. Fava’s is a simply fascinating small diner that serves delicious food in a quiet little town with comfort and appeal to the peaceful at heart. 


Featurebutton_06Husband and wife team, Prescott and Lynne Bellaire are parents to two grown daughters and one son at home. Lynne home educates, and loves teaching on the road. Both enjoy traveling and have been to a total of 43 states. They spend their spare time involved in educational activities with their son, visiting local museums, participating in Cub Scout activities and various community events. They hope to bring some good eats, and special stops to Vintage Indie while they're on the road. 

On the Road with The Bellaire's: Gus's Famous Fried Chicken, Memphis TN Review


Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken

310 S Front St  
Memphis, TN 38103

Are you near or in Memphis Tennessee? Do you have a craving for just plain good food? I am talking that “age old” give me a burger and some fries major craving – well Gus’ famous fried chicken will give you something to taste and talk about. Spices, chicken, and taste… that’s all I can say. Busy and bustling with flavor and down to earth food Gus’ is a local favorite that has apparently made the world notice.


Gus’ tastes like good home cooked but this is not your momma’s chicken – unless she taught Gus to make his delicious recipe chicken. Almost addicting in 30 min or less  - even my 8 yr old finished 2-3 pieces. It has the perfect juice, heat, and tenderness that will beg you to finish all the chicken you order. A family meal fit for a family ready for great eating was such a value, it tasted even better than any first impressions. An order of sweet tea to accompany the meal will provide the perfect sweet coolant for your pallet. And don’t forget the amazing fresh slaw and baked beans that will melt in your mouth. 


World famous chicken is not a cliché statement here. Gus’ serves food you will never forget. So throw away the “sweet tooth”, “health food”, or “grilled” thoughts. You only live once and this is what its for – dig in to Gus’ world famous chicken and remember you did.  



Featurebutton_06 Lynne Bellaire, mom  to two grown daughters and one son at home. Lynne home educates, and loves teaching on the road. Her and her son (only one left at home) enjoy traveling and have been to a total of 43 states. They spend their spare time involved in educational activities, visiting local museums, participating in Cub Scout activities and various community events. They hope to bring some good eats, and special stops to Vintage Indie while they're on the road. 

On the Road with The Bellaires: Lola's, Charleston, WV

Please help me in sending our new guest reporters The Bellaires, a warm Vintage Indie welcome! They'll be visiting us here at VI, sharing their love of travel, good eats and other fun topics that peak their interests. Up first, they bring us a foodie review of Lola's, in Charleston WV. 


Complicated Elegance from Simple Food?

 A trip to Charleston, WV did not disappoint. After a local’s recommendation, a visit to Lola’s restaurant was a must-do. Recognized for their delicious pizzas and salads, made fresh with natural ingredients as well as wonderful taste combinations, they include goat cheese, artichoke, and a variety of herbs and spices. The Lola’s experience was wonderful, and one that we will remember for years to come.  



Located in a small white house in the south hills just minutes from downtown Charleston, West Virginia, Lola’s is inviting and soothing from the landscape to the dining room. The surrounding architecture, ambiance, and layout literally make you feel at home. So how was eating at home away from home? In short, fantastically satisfying! 


The start of a memorable meal began with a masterful pan seared goat cheese salad with beautiful greens, a delicious vinaigrette, and goat cheese slices that melted in your mouth. The salad was the perfect entree in wait for a remarkable pizza. Lola’s has wowed the locals with the pizza creations since their start up. Our order of a child’s pepperoni pizza and large adult pizza with flank steak and sausage arrived in short time and we were eager to partake. The pizza dough was light and flavorful with cheese, meats, and sauce that was absolutely palette pleasing. It did not take long or much effort to completely finish this mouthwatering pie.


For dessert, well we could not pass up the flour-less chocolate cake and the coconut Crème Brûlée…. sweets made for a king. Some of the best pastry shops and cake houses in America would be privileged to serve the confections we enjoyed as the finality to our meal.



Eating salad and pizza may not seem like high-end dining, but do not be fooled. The meal was beyond expectations and could stand up to many 5 star restaurants we have been blessed to enjoy throughout the U.S. and several countries. Lola’s is without question in a league of its own. 


The meal portions were very appropriate, flavors best in class, and the overall experience impossible to pass up. If you enjoy salads, pizzas, and dessert items made with fresh ingredients that make you beg for more, then you must visit Lola’s. You will not only be satisfied, but will truly be creating a dining memory.   




(304) 343-5652

1038 Bridge Rd
Charleston, WV 25314




Family Friendly Destination Panama City Beach: Treasure Island Vacation Rental, a Review


There comes a time in your life when the ocean calls your name, at least if you've been there before. If not, then maybe you don't know what I'm talking about and a trip to the ocean is in order. Either way, the ocean has called my name many times before. The warmth of the sun, sand between my toes and the smell of that sweet and salty ocean is incomparable to anything else. Every few years (and more if I can) I have to fill that need, and have placed a love for the ocean in my children's hearts as well. Memories of endless sandcastle building and boogie boarding until your belly can't handle anymore are things my children will never forget. 
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Here in landlocked Kentucky there aren't any oceans nearby so we have a few options as to where to travel. Keeping in mind mileage and time spent in the car, you can head south to the Gulf of Mexico to Florida beaches or head to the Atlantic on the East Coast. For this Family Friendly Travel destination, we chose the Gulf's white beaches for our family vacation, more specifically Panama City Beach.
Budget Friendly Tip: For our family, finding a place that offers a full kitchen much like a home is often more budget friendly. We shop our local grocery and pack coolers of food before we travel. Stores seem to be a lot pricier in Florida.
PCB Condo from the beach up!
Looking from the Beach Up! 
We chose the Treasure Island Condominium complex. The location was absolutely fabulous and the condo provided everything we needed to feel like home in paradise for a week. 
PCB Departure Photos Kitchen
Full Kitchen
People say the heart of the home is the kitchen, and I couldn't agree more. Having a full sized kitchen is a bonus during a family vacation. This condo provided plenty of pots, pans and dishes to serve our family of four, but could serve more. Serving your family while looking at the ocean certainly has its perks, and makes these everyday type tasks not seem as laborious. I'm very picky when it comes to kitchen items and the cleanliness of appliances. The coffee maker wasn't as clean as I would have liked it, so we picked up a cheap "travel" coffee maker to take with us when we go on vacation.  
 Budget Friendly Tip: Plan on cooking most meals while on vacation and keep eating-out to only special "lunches".  If you're looking to try some of the local dives (more on those later) try lunch menus as they seem to be less expensive than their full dinner offerings.
PCB Master Bedroom
Master Bedroom that looks out over the ocean. 

PCB Second Bedroom
2nd Bedroom 
Of course, a proper vacation means somewhere to rest your head. The rooms provided to be comfortable, including a television (if you choose to add a little TV downtime) and drawers for your clothing.   My favorite part was waking up to the gorgeous ocean just by looking out of the balcony window from the bed. 
PCB Master Bathroom
A double sink master bathroom with a dual head shower is featured as well as a full walk in closet. There is also another toilet room to the left. 

PCB Departure Photo Living area
The living room/den overlooking the ocean view. The view from here and the balcony is breathtaking. Really, it is perfect. I couldn't have asked for a better view. 
The couch is a sofa sleeper that will be replaced soon as we were told from the owner. We didn't need this sleeping room, but agree that it could be replaced if you were to need it for someone to sleep on. 
PCB Condo - Living Area
Another view of the living area. 
PCB Dining & Kitchen Area
The condo offers a lovely kitchen dining set that seats six, but to be honest I spent almost every meal on that balcony just taking in the sight of the ocean.
PCB Balcony Last Day
PCB Pool Zoomed in from the Balcony
A view of the pool, zoomed in from our very high balcony. 
PCB Very Large Pool
The pool from ground level right before the sun set. 
I have to admit we are total beach bums, but we truly enjoyed this pool in the evening. It was very clean, plenty of seating for everyone and one of the largest pools I have ever been in. The grounds crew at Treasure Island seems to be on the ball because we saw no garbage in or around the pool or beach area in front of the condo. It was very well maintained. 
I also loved the short walk to the beach just past the pool area. 
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Covered parking garage in front of the lobby for loading and unloading your car. Luggage carts and large elevators made it easy to unload our car and head up to the condo in one trip! Bonus for hubby! 
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Sunset photo taken from the pool area. 
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View from our balcony. 
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Riding the waves! 
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All in all this was a great vacation had by our entire family. We would absolutely travel back to the Treasure Island Vacation Rentals in Panama City Beach. The complex was wonderful, this specific condo catered to our needs and we can't wait to go back again soon. 
If your family is planning a trip for next summer, book early with Mr. Steve Carr, owner of this vacation rental. Working with him was a breeze and he was much more personable and accommodating than working with the complex directly or with a travel agent. Mr. Carr truly cares that you have a wonderful experience and wants to be sure you're happy with your stay. You can't find many rental places that you can say the same about, most of them are just concerned with numbers in and numbers out. 
Visit Treasure Island Vacation Rental 361426 for further details about this condo. 
Stay tuned for more from our trip to Panama City Beach, Florida. We have some must eat places to share with you! 

Truth in Review: The owner of this condo, provided us with a discounted rate in exchange for our review.  We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacations, and find the right place for you and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial Wyatt, Editor in chief. 

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclosure Page for more info


Family Travels: Family Friendly Destinations - Hocking Valley Scenic Railway

When I think of vintage pertaining to my children, trains come to mind. My boys have loved trains ever since they were small. We surprised them with a train ride (their first) during our last trip to Hocking Hills. You can find the Hocking Valley Scenic Railway in Nelsonville.

Within driving distance from Old Man's Cave, it is a delight not to be missed during your family vacation.

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At the train station. It's full of railway history.

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I love the Art Deco lighting in this passenger train.


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A Double Decker Passenger train that runs sometimes with the scenic railway.

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Hubby & Moi

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The engine after a switch, coming to attach to us to take us back.

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A retired school teacher now fully invested in trains volunteers his time with the Hocking Valley Scenic Railway. He spent a lot of time talking with my oldest love about how the trains work, and pointing out historical facts along the way. This was his first year actually "going for the ride" as he's spent hundreds of personal hours working on the trains in the train yard.

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Getting ready for a tour of the engine.

Did you know that the Hocking Valley Scenic Railway is a completely volunteer railway? Every person involved is a volunteer. This is not an easy job and requires many hours working in the train yard.

Hocking Valley Scenic Railway offers many different types of train rides but you'll need to catch those on specific days. Go for a ride during the "Robbery Train" and participate in a gold hold up.

Ride back into history when our old-time train carries a “gold" shipment. The robbers of Smoke Rise Ranch are planning an attack with their horses and guns to rob the train of its gold and the passengers of their “play" money. This thrilling trip is fun for the entire family and one of our most popular trains.

They also have a caboose train, a 4th of July Fireworks Shuttle, a boo train, Santa train and a whole lot more.  

All rides depart from the Nelsonville Depot, located at 33 W. Canal Street on U.S. Route 33 in Nelsonville, Ohio. This is 56 miles southeast of Columbus, Ohio, from the I-70 intersection, and 13 miles north of Athens, Ohio.


Reservations may be made on-line through this website, by calling 740-753-9531, or by leaving a message at 800-967-7834. Reservations for groups of 20 or more, charter trains and school group trains may be also be arranged by calling 800-967-7834.

For complete information visit the Hocking Valley Train Website.


Truth in Review: Hocking Valley Scenic Railway did provide us with tickets in exchange for our review.  We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacations, and find the right place for you and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial Wyatt, editor in chief.

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclosure Page for more info.

Family Travels: Family Friendly Destinations - Ravenwood Castle Ohio Bed & Breakfast

Ravenwood Castle and Medieval Village Bed & Breakfast


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From the moment I spoke to owner Sue Maxwell, I knew our time at the Ravenwood Castle was going to be wonderful. Her voice alone tells how she really enjoys owning the castle and working with the guests.

Sue and her husband John traveled to London many times before opening up the castle Bed and Breakfast where they found true inspiration for the castle's decor. 


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Once our little family arrived at the castle on top of the hill, we were immediately greeted at the front door by Diane of guest services. Diane, has such a warm heart and made us feel right at home as soon as we stepped through the "drawbridge". 


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We ate dinner as soon as we arrived. It couldn't have been better timing as we were very hungry. The buffet included a gooey cheesy lasagna, chicken, mixed beans, and an out of this world broccoli pasta salad. Carol was the mastermind behind the delicious broccoli salad. It truly was my favorite part of the entire meal. I later found out Carol was the chef behind many of the dishes throughout our stay.

Overall, our first meal at Ravenwood was delicious and satisfying. The boys really enjoyed the yummy array of desserts.

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All of these little cottages are suites of sorts for you to stay in, if you'd rather not stay in the castle itself.

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We stayed in the Clock Tower. A loft cottage with a large upstairs bedroom and smaller downstairs living area with a futon for the boys. It was clean, quaint and cozy. The upstairs bed was so pillowy soft and comfortable, I slept like a baby.  The mini fridge helped keep our drinks cold and the jacuzzi tub was a nice addition to a long day of hiking.


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Life-sized chess and checkers set. The guys had a lot of fun with these.

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The Coach Tea Room is open May through October - Thursday through Sunday, 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM. The menu features specialties typical of those found in British Tea Rooms.


You certainly don't want to miss breakfast, especially if Linda is in the kitchen making her homemade cinnamon rolls. Boy, are they gooey, warm, and so, so good! Linda was such a gem as is all of the staff at Ravenwood. She comes from many years of service at Ravenwood Castle, over thirteen! She's such a sweet lady! She also told me she was a hog farmer. A tried and true one at that, raising hogs with her family for the fair. A lady after my own heart, she raises them the proper way, without antibiotics and the other yuck of conventional farming.

You'll also find Kelly's smiling face in the kitchen filling up the morning coffee pots with fresh coffee and making sure your morning breakfast goes smoothly. Another long service member of the castle, having worked there for eleven years.

My favorite part was spending some time in the kitchen with all of the ladies at the castle and getting to know them. It was like being in the heart of my home. The saying, " The heart of the home is in the kitchen"  goes for the castle as well.

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"It's my turn to unlock the castle door!"

Of course my husband and boys enjoyed every meal right along with me, as well as the other aspects of the castle. The "knight and armor" theme throughout the main dining room was a hit with the boys. They also enjoyed spending time on the grounds, and the English garden.

We encourage you to check into the Ravenwood Castle while you're visiting the Hocking Hills area. It is definitely a fun and romantic place (if it's just the two of you) to stay.

Be sure to mention Vintage Indie's review when you book your stay (by phone only) at Ravenwood Castle to receive

10% off of your room.


Ravenwood Castle |  65666 Bethel Road  |  New Plymouth, Ohio 45654
800-477-1541 | Local: 740-596-2606


Truth in Review: Owner of Ravenwood Castle did provide us with accommodations in exchange for our review.  We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacations, and find the right place for you and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial Wyatt, editor in chief.

Visit our Disclaimer/Disclousure Page for more info.

Family Travels: Family Friendly Destinations - Getaway Cabins S. Bloomingville, Ohio

Tucked away in what seems like the middle of nowhere you will find yourself amidst the wooden cabins of Getaway Cabins. Our home for three days was the quaint Spruce Moose. The long driveway into the woods brought out a feeling of excitement for the entire car as we passed trees, chipmunks, bunnies and even a wild turkey at one point during our trip.

Jennifer Mitchell and her husband purchased Getaway Cabins from the original owner and initially had over thirty properties. After some thought and a lot of consideration they decided to down size to focus and make thirteen of those properties top priority.

Checking-in to Getaway Cabins was a breeze. As you pull into Chapel Ridge you're welcomed by the hospitality of Jennifer Mitchell and staff, and Bear the sweet black labrador retriever. The check-in cabin is also a small store hosting local artists candles, coffee, and art creations. Entertainment included the fixings for s'mores, and a great selection of DVDs to check out while you're staying.

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Spruce Moose

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Seating for six.

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Cozy Living Room.

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Our favorite spot for a family game night.

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Bedroom mirrors the second bedroom.

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Very large yard for running & playing. Also a great firepit there to the left.

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Back Deck Sliding doors from both bedrooms.

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 Covered hot tub, very clean. This would be so much fun in the wintertime.

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Humming bird feeder and picnic shelter through the woods.

Spruce Moose is a two bedroom cabin that can sleep up to six. Two in the two bedrooms and two on the pullout sofa. This cabin is just right if you're headed to the Hocking Hills area to hike. Complete with a full kitchen, refrigerator, stove, microwave and coffee maker. It also is stocked with plates, silverware and pots and pans, although they could use updating. We don't use teflon in our home (especially when it is flaking) We used one aluminum pot for cooking everything. I would have been thrilled with the kitchen had it had better pots and pans.

Our boys thought the cabin was awesome. They enjoyed having their own room and enjoyed exploring in the backyard and woods. Next time, they said, they're bringing their ball and gloves.

 Spruce Moose had comfortable beds, a place for us to snuggle as a family,watch a movie and made for a great place to stay for our outdoor/hiking vacation. We also enjoyed the cozy living room area and coffee table for playing our newest family game Phase10. By the way have you ever played? It is addicting.

Our favorite part was the seclusion, the hot tub after a long day of hiking and the wonderful fire pit to make s'mores with our boys.

We hope you enjoyed this review of Spruce Moose and would consider staying with Getaway Cabins for your next Family Friendly vacation.

Check out many of the cabins Getaway Cabins has to offer and take 10% off of your stay when you mention this review here at Vintage Indie.

If you're looking for a special place to have a small intimate wedding. Getaway Cabins also offers Wedding and honeymoon packages.

Keep reading as I'll be back soon with photos from our trip and one of the most gorgeous places I've ever seen.


Truth in Review: Owner of Getaway Cabins did provide us with accommodations in exchange for our review.  We were not paid for any contents of our review or required any certain text within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacations, and find the right place for you and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial Wyatt, editor in chief.

Visit our Disclaimer for more info.

Getting to Know: Leona, owner of Dreamscape Hideaway Logan Ohio, Hocking Hills

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Dreamscape Hideaway Hocking Hills (winter)

Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

I am a wife a mom and a grandmother to 2 beautiful grandchildren.  I am also a professional photographer and adventurer which allows me to travel and explore. 

How long have you owned Dreamscape Hideaway?

I have owned the cabin 3 1/2 yrs

The details seem to shine through every room of the cabin, what inspired you to make Dreamscape such a luxurious place to stay?

I've been lucky to travel extensively in the last decade and find myself intrigued and inspired with so many of the places I visit.  I'm always asking myself, "How can I improve things?  How can I make it better. Oftentimes something I see in some remote location gives me ideas on what I can do at Dreamscape Hideaway.

Hawaii seems to show its face around the cabin, can you tell us a little bit about that? Why Hawaii items in Ohio?

Well, my other job is chief photographer of Wizard Publications, the largest guidebook publisher in Hawaii. As a result, I alternate months in Hawaii and Ohio. So when I started Dreamscape Hideaway, I decided to bring some of the aloha spirit (not to mention fresh Kona coffee and chocolate macadamia nuts) to our cabin in the woods.  In fact, the very name of the cabin comes from the titles of our Hawaiian coffee table books, "Hawaii Dreamscapes Revealed."

How many people does the cabin sleep? Do you allow children?

The cabin sleeps 6 adults. Although we love children the cabin is designed with adults in mind.

What are some of your favorite go-to spots in Hocking Hills?

My personal favorite would be hiking in the Hocking Hills.  There are 6 major hiking areas, Old Mans Cave is my favorite.  Also in the area is Horseback riding, canoeing/kayaking, rock climbing, ATV riding and ziplining. 

Just  Owning a rental place seems like a lot of hard work, but do you find it rewarding? If so, how?

It is a lot of hard work. More than I ever imagined. But, though it may sound like a cliche, when I read happy comments from happy customers, it really, really does make it all worth it.

Is there anything else you would like to tell us about the cabin? Any history or fond memories of your stays there?

Dreamscape Hideaway represents the culmination of all my dreams as a traveler.  The smallest detail has become the biggest issue when I envision my ideal guest and the expectations that they bring when they check into the object of my passions.

We've had everything at the cabin from girls getaways, to honeymoons and reunions.
We also been astounded at the amount of wild life that show up at the cabin on a regular basis.  You can sit right on the back porch and watch wild deer curiously watching us. 

Be sure to catch the video below of Dreamscape Hideaway and if you haven't seen our review of Dreamscape Hideaway be sure to do so here.

Family Travels: New Column Family Friendly Destinations - Dreamscape Hideaway Logan, Ohio

Welcome to Family Travels, our newest column here at Vintage Indie. Word of mouth seems to be the best form of choosing a vacation spot or rental, and we hope that you'll visit Vintage Indie in the future when you are searching out a location for you or your family to stay in the Eastern part of the United States (possibly Western in the future).

Our first review is located in Logan, Ohio, also home to Hocking Hills, Old Man's Cave and 9 state parks.  

Dreamscape Hideaway Logan Ohio
Dreamscape Hideaway
April 2011

As we pulled up to the rocky driveway, the car lights flashed on the front of the log home nestled by the woods. Our getaway that landed us in Logan, Ohio for the first time was about to begin.

Hubby got out of the car and went to check it out. As a good hubby does, he went inside without me to make sure everything was safe for our unpacking, promising not to disclose any details.

Dreamscape Hideaway Front Porch
Front porch of Dreamscape Hideaway with the most comfortable porch swing.

As I opened the door to the front of Dreamscape Hideaway, soft spa-like music filled the room creating a relaxing feeling all over me. I knew our weekend of a much needed husband-wife getaway had begun. The glow from the chandelier filled the large room to the top of the 20 feet ceilings creating a warm glow. Hubby flickered on the gas fireplace, and we both looked at each other and smiled. We thought this place couldn't get any better, but it certainly did.

Dreamscape Hideaway Living Room
Second living area, with a see through fireplace through the next room.

Like little kids, we darted from room to room commenting on everything we saw. The kitchen was so clean, as a matter of fact Dreamscape Hideaway was the cleanest rental place we have ever stayed in. The stainless steel appliances sparkled as well as the shiny espresso maker, eureka! I was determined to learn how to make a cappuccino.  

Dreamscape Hideaway Open Room

Open Floor view from the Loft

The entertainment center and flat screen T.V. offered over 100 movies to choose from, as well as games and books. As we made our way to the bedrooms we were surprised with the details in each room. Super soft sheets, luscious down pillows, a breakfast in bed tray filled with freshly baked cookies. It seems as if Leona, the owner, thought of every detail to make you feel as if you were in a 5 star hotel, but more like home in her cabin.

Dreamscape Hideaway Loft Bedroom
Loft Bedroom

Dremscape Hideaway Loft Bathroom

Loft Bathroom with Jacuzzi Tub.

The weekend boasted a lot of rain, thunderstorms and lightning, but that didn't stop us from enjoying ourselves. Locked up in a cabin for a couple of days with the one you love is often needed to refresh your marriage.  It helps to remind each other how good the two of you really are when it's just the two of you. When the lightning settled, we found our way into the hot tub situated privately on the back porch where the trees, birds and nature greeted you. The soft sound of the rain pattering on the roof made for ultimate relaxation.

View of the woods from the hot tub. The birds and wildlife made for a wonderful experience.

Although we didn't get to visit the acclaimed rock formations of Old Man's Cave, or any of the outdoor offerings, we did find ourselves in bliss.  The cabin is situated within minutes of a delicious BBQ restaurant, and to our surprise, many antique malls. We had a blast!


Last minute, I decided to pack some food for us prior to leaving. The rain was unrelenting and I didn't know how I would feel traveling around looking for every meal. It turned out to be a perfect decision. Saturday morning, I found myself making breakfast in the fully equipped kitchen that includes a wonderful view of the woods from the window. With the porch screen door opened, fresh air filled the room. I didn't feel at all stressed with having to cook on our getaway.


Dreamscape Hideaway Dining Room

 The beautiful table-scape provided a perfect setting for a home cooked meal, but we decided to dine outdoors on the covered back porch instead. If you're looking to grill out while you stay, Dreamscape offers a very clean grill on their covered porch, as well as a picnic table.


If you're inclined to do so, and the weather permits, the nearby fire pit would make a fun addition to your stay for roasting hot dogs and marshmallows.

Dreamscape Hideaway is not your typical cabin in the woods, but a paradise for husband and wife getaways, girlfriend getaways, family trips and whatever other excuse you can find to visit. The surroundings are a bonus, but not necessary if you want to just lock yourselves in for a weekend of peace and quiet. We found the drive to only be 2 1/2 hours from our Northern Kentucky location right outside Cincinnati. Perfect for a weekend trip and drive.

We truly appreciate the hospitality of Dreamscape Hideaway Cabin owner, Leona, for providing the cabin to us for the weekend. We hope you've enjoyed our review of the cabin, and encourage you to look to Dreamscape Hideaway for your next vacation spot.

Dreamscape Hideaway
Click to Visit Dreamscape Hideaway to book your stay!

Leona Doughty is also a professional photographer by day, and has photographed two books of her other love, Hawaii. I'll be back soon to highlight those books, and we'll get to know the owner of Dreamscape Hideaway a little better.


Truth in Review: Owner of Dreamscape Hideaway did provide us with accomidations in exchange for our review.  We were not paid for our review, any contents of our review or required any certain context within the review. We speak truly from our hearts and hope that you and your family will gain trust from Vintage Indie Family Travels Column so that you may enjoy your vacation, and find the right place for your and your family to stay.  All reviews posted by me are truthful in content and not bought. Gabreial

Visit our Disclaimer for more info.