Google+ Two-Wheeled Tourist: Western New York Adventure - Buffalo/Cheektowaga/Batavia/Le Roy/Niagara Falls (August 9-11, 2013)


Western New York Adventure - Buffalo/Cheektowaga/Batavia/Le Roy/Niagara Falls (August 9-11, 2013)

Of course, just because I'm only halfway through recapping my huge July trip to Montana doesn't mean I can't continue going on other random jaunts in the meantime.

Earlier this month, I headed eastbound on I-90 to Cheektowaga, a suburb of Buffalo, NY to join the Women On Wheels® Mz. Behavin' Chapter as they helped out with "A Salute to Sturgis" at the Peregrine's Landing Senior Community. The activities director there, who happens to be a motorcyclist and a member of this chapter, has held this event for the last several years and many of the residents look forward to a chance to hang out with bikers and dress up in motorcycle clothing. This particular year held the record for the most motorcycles to show up at the event and even included neighbors from Canada who rode over the border to join in on the fun.

Even Louise and Annagator, the 2014 Women On Wheels® International Ride-In™ Animal Ambassadors joined in on the fun with the seniors! 
Now, you might be thinking, "Why a bike event at a senior center?" It's all about reconnecting. Many of these residents don't get out much anymore due to age and limited mobility. Getting the mental stimulation that keeps them engaged and happy is very important, and if we can do anything about improving the quality of life for these "well-traveled" folks, every little bit helps. And besides, meeting a gentleman who owned a 1908 Indian motorcycle in his younger days is a pretty cool too.

You ride that, grandpa.
There are other activities available for the residents, including a small library and board games. Louise starts this chess game with "Bird's Opening."
After all that, the ladies invited me to join them in Batavia for the last day of that city's Bike Week. We scooted another 40 minutes on the backroads to get there and hung around to check out the sights and eat dinner.

You think you're just there for a WOW event and suddenly, bike week.
Disobedience shall be met with the guillotine.
That's one big flagpole on the back of that bike. Wait a minute, that's not for flags. Oh dear.
Spotted this beautiful BSA/Triumph Rocket III in the parking lot. This is a far cry from today's rendition of that bike with the same name.
Dinner at Bourbon & Burger Co. was amazing. Here is my Kentucky Bourbon Company burger (marinated in bourbon sauce, topped with bacon, onion rings, lettuce, tomato, and pepperjack cheese) with sweet potato fries.

The Honda Valkyrie (left) and the Honda Goldwing F6B (right) practically use the same engines. There is still a part of me that wouldn't mind both of them in my garage...
I received a hot tip courtesy of my friend in Massachusetts that Le Roy, NY, home to a couple good motorcycle friends, was just up the road. So after parting ways with my Buffalo friends, I did what any motorcyclist does, ride over and hang out for the night! Here are Gin Shear and Sue Slate of the Women's Motorcyclist Foundation. I've known both of them for many years, when I was just a newbie in this whole motorcycle community. Sue actually sponsored me in CA to take the ATV Safety Course in Hollister Hills back in July 2011 which was an amazing experience in itself. I've also been her chaufeur to the Port Columbus Airport. Most recently, Gin, Sue, and I are working together with several others in forming the Women's Coalition of Motorcyclists, a multiple-organization effort aimed at bringing more females into the sport and increasing awareness of female riders at the industry level. Did I mention that both Gin and Sue are awesome in every way? :)

Louise and Annagator are making my smores. Such nice travelling buddies.
I spent the next morning lazily hanging out outside, finishing some paperwork and watching the local critters hang out around the bird feeder and the deck. Hey look, it's a squirrel.

There is always something that reminds me that I have to go home now. Gotta admit it there, the pencil has a point.

I'd rather be doing that.

Before returning to Ohio, I did have to swing by Niagara Falls on the American side so I could say that I've seen it from both here and in Canada. I have to say, the tourism aspect of our side of the Falls was pretty pathetic compared to what the Canadians did with it. Someone needs to pump some money into improving this place. However, the view of the Falls from this side wasn't too shabby.

Hey, I can see Canada from here! And there's Maid of the Mist V about to take tourists to their impending doom. Note to self, if you're issued rain ponchos before getting on a boat, consider that a warning.

If exercise was this easy, more people would be doing it.
This is one of the "waterfowl viewing areas" on the side of the road leading back into Buffalo. Where are the birds? But it's sure pretty.
Before leaving Buffalo, I had to enjoy some wings. So I headed over to Duff's Famous Wings for dinner. I started with some jalapeno poppers as an appetizer and chowed down on some freshly made, Buffalo-style wings in classic sauce. Then it was a gas top-off and back across Interstate 90.

About 180 miles later, I ended the day with a couple glasses of iced coffee at the Starbucks in Willoughby, OH. Yep, that was an adventure. Now I need to find an excuse (or lack thereof) to make my way across again. Having friends along my travels makes for some good times.