Sunday, September 1, 2013

Grand Rapids....part 1

I totally intended to blog about my trip to AQS QuiltWeek at Grand Rapids much closer to when I had been to Grand Rapids!  My bad!  To quote my friend Stephanie, once you get out of the habit of blogging, it is hard to get back on track.
We stayed at the Amway Grand which was just down the street from the DeVos center where QuiltWeek was.  What a beautiful, glorious old hotel!  It is as much of a showcase today as I am sure it was when it was first erected!  Beautiful wood work, chandeliers.  And the staff was just as amazing as the building itself.  Everyone was friendly, and so very helpful!  The only complaint was that the ice machine for our floor, which was conveniently located just a few doors from our room, was out of order!  Oh well, the exercise down the steps and back to the floor below was good for me!
Traveling with hubby who needs a handicap accessible bathroom is always an iffy proposition.  And I was a bit concerned with staying at a older hotel that was build before the American with Disabilities Act was enacted.  Not to worry!  The handicapped rooms were originally set up with 36" doorways to facilitate the movement of furniture for displays for a local furniture store.  The room door had an electric door opener activated by a switch from the inside which would open the door and keep it open for 30 seconds!  No more holding the  door open and trying to stay out of the way.
The bathroom was the best!  Double French style doors opened up to a beautiful modern bath, with a spacious roll-in shower.
Plenty of light, and great towels!
The refrigerator was hidden inside a cupboard.  And coffee in room!  A must!  Only real complaint was that there could have been more electrical outlets.  But we always travel with a power strip because of Wayne's CPAP machine, so we were set!
Downtown Grand Rapids is a beautiful city!  There are lots of restaurants and attractions, which makes it a wonderful walkable place!
This is a building reflected by another building.  The early evening light was great!
Grand Rapids was home to Gerald R. Ford, and his Presidential Museum is located across the river from our hotel.  This is a piece of the Berlin Wall located in the front lobby.  Going through the museum and reading the events the preceded his nomination to Vice President and subsequent succession to the presidency was very interesting.  To the younger crowd, this is history.  To me, this was the evening news!
This was a very important part of Ford's thought process.  It was quoted many times with in the museum.  This plaque was at the Fords' grave site.
This cute, giganto button was in a green space near the museum.  We happened upon as we walked to evening mass.
We attended two masses while in Grand Rapids.  Fortunately, St. Mary's was 0.7 miles from the hotel. The first was a vigil mass for the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.  The vigil mass was a Spanish mass, but we could follow along.  The priest talked with us afterwards.  He had been ordained only 2 months earlier.  It was so great to see the future face of the church.  The next mass was on Saturday evening, and we got there early.  This old church was built by the German community early in the 20th century.  The stained glass depicted many different Biblical scenes.  One of the parishioners gave us a brochure they have to explain the windows and the altars and their histories!  How friendly!
Of course, we had to eat!  This is Wayne studying the menu at Cinco de Mayo.  I love the siesta-ing guys on the back of his booth!
And what's a vacation without a little nightcap at the end of a hard day!  Nazdrowie!
And the best part of going to the quilt shows is meeting up with friends!  I am so blessed to have so many friends around the country!  Stephanie and her family live in Kalamazoo.  We drove down and ate supper with them at their favorite restaurant Bold.  A wonderful evening of great food and even greater conversation!
Now that I have broken the ice with this blog, surely I can finish up the series with my classes and the show itself!  Stay tuned!

No comments:

Post a Comment