Did you know that in nearby Michigan there is a place where you can spend a night in a home that would be familiar to historic Americans like Patrick Henry and Edgar Allen Poe, among others? Hidden away behind The Marriott-owned Dearborn Inn is a series of replicas of the homes of some famous Americans. The brainchild of Henry Ford, they were originally built to house visiting VIP guests to the sprawling Ford Headquarters. Today, they serve as luxury cottages for people wanting an unusual place to spend a night. (Rumor has it that one of Henry Ford’s sons used one of these cottages as a place to meet a famous girlfriend). If you are looking for some place that is really out of the ordinary for a Valentine’s Day getaway this might be just the place. It’s this week’s Classic One Tank Trip.
I love museums. Especially the unusual. This week’s Classic One Tank Trip travels back in time to Southwest Ohio and, at the time, one of the major African-American Museums in the country. No matter what your ethnicity I think you will find something interesting in this collection of American History. A reminder of a people and a struggle. It’ still there and well worth a One Tank Trip
This week’s Classic One Tank Trip is headed again across frosty Lake Erie to the tiny fishing village, Erieau, which is located almost due north of Cleveland. When I first visited Erieau many years ago and walked into Molly and OJ’s Bar, I was amazed when the bartender greeted me by name and I was recognized by just about everyone in the bar. This was before cable TV and the only station the little village could get clearly on TV was WJW-TV in Cleveland, the station I worked for. So within a few hours I had met just about everyone in town. Molly and OJ’s was the place to get really fresh Lake Erie Perch dinners in those days and it is still true today. The town’s main industry is commercial fishing and you can’t get fresher fish than the local restaurant. This is also Ontario’s wine country and we got to watch how they make ice wine. Not much has changed over the years and I still recommend Erieau, Canada as a wonderful spot to visit anytime of year.
Have you ever looked out over ice-shrouded Lake Erie this time of winter and wondered what’s across the lake? That’s the subject of this week’s Classic One Tank Trip.
We answer the question with a trip to Ruthven, Ontario and visit a huge greenhouse complex. The Colasanti Family has been bringing a taste of the tropics to Canada for at least two generations. In their greenhouse that covers acres, you can sit under an orange tree, or stroll through one of the most magnificent cactus gardens in Canada. But the real attraction is the animal collection, which since our visit has grown to include rides and other family friendly events, making Colasanti’s even more attractive than when we last paid them a visit. One note: While the petting farm was free years ago, today,like many agriculture businesses, they have improved their atttractions and now charge admission. check out their website for current attractions and costs. www.colasantis.com
Remember, if you are looking for other things to do this winter,check out my book,”The Best of One Tank Trips” available on this page.
This week our Classic One Tank Trip travels all the way back to 1987 when we made one of our longest trips to Vail, Colorado. Fox 8 was in the process of being purchased by a man by the name of George Gillette, who also owned most of Vail. The management suggested that Jan Jones, at that time hostess of PM Magazine, and I should go to Vail and see what the resort could offer for our respective programs. What we are showing today is a preview that I did just before we started the week-long series. You will get a good look at many of the attractions and see some of the joint appearances that Jan, a long-time friend, and I participated in. Although it was thirty years ago, many of the things you see are still there. However, if you are planning a trip, be sure to check for updates on places and prices. Let me know what you think of these long ago Classic One Tank Trips.
Also, if you have some Christmas money to spend, remember that my books are available on line, on this page. Happy New Year
With the new year fast approaching, our Classic One Tank Trip, takes advantage of some of our more popular Lake Erie tourist areas and don’t have to contend with the crowds. We go back to 1994 to take a look at snowy day at Catawba Island where we learn about Ice Wine, Champagne and other fun things to do in the winter. We were unable to confirm whether the Mexican-American restaurant was still open but Mon Ami is still in operation as well as the Firelands Winery.
Remember if you got cash or Gift Cards for Christmas, books always make great gifts. “The Best Of One Tank Trips” can be ordered on this page
I am frequently asked, “What’s your favorite One Tank Trip”? As you probably know, I have just written a book about all my favorite trips. But, if I had to choose a favorite Christmas One Tank Trip. It is the Classic One Tank Trip we are showing today.
I “fly” my One Tank Trip car over downtown Cleveland at the height of the Christmas Season! Let me explain: We did a half hour show back in 2001 about the holiday season and at the close of the half-hour show, my producer, Lisa March, said “wouldn’t it be neat if you could fly your car over Public Square while we run the closing credits. Bear in mind this was before all the fancy computer-generated things you can do today. It took us days of working in sub-zero weather at night filming on the ground and in the sky, via the Fox 8 Helicopter. (This was before the days of drones). Thanks to the great work of Bob Levkulich, Jim Holloway, Scott Johnson, Herb Thomas, Tomi Toyama-AMbrose and many other folks, we made it happen. So join us once again as we make my car fly