|August 14 – Friday
Another sunny day in Ontario and a lovely day for a drive along Ontario highways. We hadn’t made reservations for camping tonight so our day started with making phone calls and successfully making reservations at a campsite in Waterloo. We found out there is a car show in New Hamburg this weekend and all the campsites are getting filled up. Driving south from Parry Sound along the east side of Georgian Bay provided for more amazing sites - more lakes and beautiful scenery. As we got south of Barrie we saw large fields of crops – garlic, carrots, corn, soy beans and grain that is ready for harvest. South of Barrie we also saw lots more traffic. The traffic was very heavy all along Highway 400 and onto the 401 making it tricky staying within eyesight of each other. We did manage to stay together and stopped at Woodbine Casino/Racetrack parking lot for lunch. On to Waterloo we arrived at Green Acres Park campground and set up quickly in a large, pull through site (sure is nice to have a pull thru site!!). It was early afternoon so we took a drive to New Hamburg to the “Ten Thousand Villages”. This is a nonprofit program of the MCC that provides vital, fair income to Third World people by marketing their handicrafts and telling their stories in North America. It was then back to the campsite for an evening of laundry and doing some catch up. Tomorrow we plan to go to St. Jacobs.
August 15 – Saturday
Sunny,hot day with temperatures to 31 degrees this afternoon. Our group was divided today as Jim & Sandy reserved at a different campground last night and we weren’t able to meet us with them today. Dave & Sharron and Norm & Marian started out early for breakfast at St. Jacobs this morning. Shaun & Dianne and Gary & Elaine came later – visiting the busy Farmers Market at St. Jacobs where the produce is just amazing. We have never seen such beautiful looking vegetables, many grown in Niagara. The indoor market with its variety of sausage, meats, breads & baked goods, canned goods and you name it, very mind boggling. And so were the crowds of people!!!
We were on the first tour of the day on the horse drawn wagons to an Amish farm that has been in the family for 8 generations. Peter, our tour guide, told us about Mennonite history, lifestyle, farming and more as we rode to the farm. He also took us on a tour through the Maple Tree Grove which covers 35 acres and last year produced 6,000 liters of maple syrup. It was very interesting to see the lines that go through the grove to bring the sap by gravity or vacuum to the building where the excess water is extracted leaving the pure maple syrup. It takes 40 gallons of sap to make 1 gallon of syrup. Back to the Farmers Market for a lunch of perogies and cabbage rolls and a dish of apple fritters with ice cream and maple syrup. YUMMMMMMMMMMMMM!!!
Our next stop of the day was at the village of St. Jacobs with its intriguing shops and unusual structures. The Village Silos filled with various galleries from quilts, handmade soaps, blown glass, pottery was the most unique. A visit to the Corn Broom Maker proved very informative.
Enough of St. Jacobs, Shaun & Gary were anxious to be on our way to the Mopar Car Show in New Hamburg. Even though it was very hot they had a great time looking at all the cars. It was a very large meet. The highlight for Gary was seeing a 1968 GTX much like the one he owned and raced with in the early 1970’s.
This evening we had the privilege of a visit at our campsite by a couple of our friends from our trips to Haiti, Marilyn and Kathy. It was special to be able to see them again.
Tommorrw we plan on goig to church in Plattsville where Randall & Terrina Rehkopf pastor (formerly in Chilliwack). We are then on to Vineland & will be dry camping for 3 nights as we tour the Niagra Falls area.