Friday, September 19, 2014

Lawton, OK - Buffalo Bob's RV Park - Sept-Oct, 2014

Home to see family and friends! Always nice to see everyone!  We decided to give Buffalo Bob's RV Park a try this time since it is closer to Bruce's parents.

Site 104

Buffalo Bob's RV Park
The park is clean and the sites are of decent size.  Monthly have to use a back in site.
Full hook up with wifi and cable.
The monthly rate with Good Sam discount is $410.
There is a bath house that also is a storm shelter! Nice to have the shelter in this part of the country.
There is a club room with great wifi. Wifi at our site isn't really stable, on and off connection.
Free laundry!
The office is not manned all day but the manager lives right next door so is only a phone call away.
The only negative is we are a country setting and have had problems with mice. This is not a problem I blame on the park though.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Thackerville, OK - Winstar World Casino RV Resort - Sept. 18, 2014

Bruce has always wanted to stay here - so here we are! The RV Resort is beautiful and the Casino is HUGE!

Site 153
Winstar Casino and RV Resort

Large RV Resort with full hookups, NO wifi or cable. I guess they want you in the casino.
Paved sites with grass in between. Most of the sites are double pull through but while we were there they assigned both to one rig. I guess in busier times they have the option to only give you only one. I hope that makes sense :-)
There is a pool but we didn't use it. We headed to the casino which is so large you will get lost!
Since this was our first time there, the first night is free! The normal rates are $40 a night, a bit high compared to other casino RV parks.
We ate at Toby Keith's which was very good and the margarita was excellent and not high priced! We played for a while in the casino and of course, walked away without winning. They have to pay for the casino somehow. Oh well, on the road again to go see our kiddos and grandkiddos!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Natchez, MS and Vidalia, LA - River View RV Park and Resort - Sept 3 - 10, 2014

We had a nice drive from Pensacola to Natchez/Vidalia. The River View RV Park was easy to find, coming from the east using Hwy 84, the first left after crossing the Mississippi bridge into Vidalia, LA and 7/10 mile turn left into the park.

Park Information:
Office was nice and clean with the laundry located in a room just inside the front door. The office staff was friendly and helpful. We were assigned site 107 which is a pull though concrete site with a view of the river. There was a low hanging branch so I called the office to ask about another site. She gave us 105. Every other site is concrete with a grass site in between. Full hookup, cable isn't really cable but an antenna. Wifi was good most of the time. Drops every now and then. Picnic table at each site, it would be nice it the patio was concrete too. Bathhouse was family style, each room with shower and bathroom. Pool and hot tub closes at 7 pm. Would have been nice to be opened a little later as it is too hot during the day to enjoy.

Weekly rate of $210.33, 50 amp $15, taxes crazy at $32.33. TOTAL $257.66
Site 105

The Mississippi is in view from our site although this picture was taken from the bank.
Our visit to Natchez:
We stopped at the Natchez visitor center to purchase antebellum tour package - 3 for $30. It would have been $12 each without the package deal. Customer service could have been better, not much information was provided.
Stanton Hall - since this was one of the top rated tours on Trip Adviser. The tour group was only us and another couple so that was nice to have a small group. Guide was very knowledgeable and interesting. The home had been bought by the Garden Club and they have done a great job in restoration and tour information.
Stanton Hall
Photography is not allowed inside the mansion. I wish I could show how they used large mirrors at both ends of the long room to reflect light and make to room appear even larger.
A room upstairs originally was a sitting room that connected 2 bedrooms. At one time Stanton Hall was a bed and breakfast so they left the room as it was for it. I would have like to see it placed back as it would have been originally.

Day 4, Saturday. We planned on a guided tour of downtown that was supposed to start at the William Johnson house. We arrived at 1:20 pm but found the house closed with a sign that they were closed 1-1:45 daily for lunch. We took a walk down Main St waiting for them to reopen. At 2 pm they were still not open so we decided to take a drive to the 2 cemeteries in town.

Example of the beautiful ironwork gates and fences.

Natchez National Cemetery - founded in 1857.
Last stop of the day - the oldest tavern in Natchez - Under the Hill on Silver street.
Bruce and Kathy enjoying a cold one.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Grand Village of the Natchez Indians and Rosalie Mansion Tour - Natchez, MS - Sept 7, 2014

Today started out a little overcast with less humidity so we headed toward the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians. This is a federal park that is maintained by the Mississippi Dept of Archives and History that has identified 2 of the 3 known mounds used by the Natchez Indian tribe. Mound A is no longer in existence, Mound B was where the "Great Sun" or tribe chief's house was built and Mound C was the ceremonial temple site. The park provides a short video about the history of the Natchez Indians and the documentation by the French.
I found it interesting that when the Great Sun died, his relatives and servants would be sacrificed so to follow him into the next world and take care of him. The home would be burned and a fresh layer of dirt would be added to the mound on which to build the next Great Sun's home.
Mound B "Great Sun" home would have been on top of the mound.
Our next stop was for another antebellum home tour. I decided on the Rosalie since 2 other places had recommended it. Longwood was always the 1st recommendation but we had toured it about 25 years ago.
Rosalie is located just to the north of the Visitor's Center and above the area known at "Natchez Under the Hill". The house didn't have to undergo much renovation as only family had every lived in the home. Most of the furniture was original. The Rosalie was Union Headquarters and the general had the parlor furniture all moved up to the attic to preserve it. A lot of the rich here were originally from the north so the military was sympathetic to them.
The Rosalie's front faces the north which always a wonderful breeze across both the verandas. The docent also pointed out that with the doors and window open, the breeze would flow all the way through the house. Here is the link to the history: The Rosalie Mansion. It is owned and maintained by the Mississippi Daughters of the American Revolution.
Again, no picture taking allowed inside so pictures courtesy of ones found on the internet.

The Rosalie

The men and ladies parlors
The children's room

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Pensacola NAS, Pensacola, FL - Oak Grove Park

Our first stop after leaving Destin was to visit our nephew and his wife, Chase and Shelby. He is stationed at Pensacola NAS so we were able to stay at Oak Grove RV Park with his sponsorship.
We entered the base through the back gate via Blue Angel Parkway. Chase and Shelby met us at the gate to authorize our access to the base. Bruce just had to show the gate guard his ID (driver's license) and we allowed access to the base. 
Oak Grove Park was about 2 miles down the road and we were greeted by a Camp Host as the office was closed. She was very helpful and informative, especially about the low hanging branches of the live oaks. We had pull-through site 7. The beach was a short walk from the park. We had already been to the museum and the lighthouse so did not do this again. We were mainly there to see Chase and Shelby before we left Florida. The Blue Angels were away so we didn't get to see them. That would have really made the stay A1!!
The only negative was each morning around 6 am, we had something hitting our roof over our bedroom. It lasted about 1 - 1 1/2 hours. I think it was a squirrel throwing down acorns then picking them up from the ground as we never saw anything on the ground that could have been hitting the roof making all that racket.
The airport was close so there were times it was noisy but there are Air Force squadrons here so we were not surprised and actually enjoyed it knowing my nephew was training in one of those planes. The sound of Freedom!

Park information:
Concrete pad with lots of live oak trees.
30-50 amps electric, water, sewer and cable.
No wifi.
Roads were tight due to the large trees but very manageable as long as you navigate around low branches.
Short walk to beach.
Bathrooms were nice and clean.
Laundry on site.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Destin, FL - Camp Gulf - Aug. 6, 2013 until Sept. 1, 2014

Hard to know where to begin so let me start at the beginning...

We arrived 8/6/13 to Camp Gulf in Destin, FL. We were greeted at the gate by a man on a golf cart "just sit down young lady and we'll get you to your site...Hmmm, you aren't on my arrival sheet...oh, you are new workcampers...pull through the gate and someone will be with you" Later, we found out this was Herb Owen.
Then another man, Patrick, pulled up on a segway. "let's get your tow unhooked and get you into your site"
We were given site 508 but only temporarily until some of the other camp workers moved out. 
Site 508
Site 508
After a couple of weeks, we were moved to site 208, which has the cabin row behind it. Not too thrilled with that but it turned out ok.

site 208
Site 208

Working at Camp Gulf was quite an experience! Very, very busy but the management was great about doing extra things for the work campers. Several dinners that they cooked and cleaned up afterwards. Gift certificates for things to do in the area. They were very appreciative of our hard work!
Bruce's Office

Kathy working at Leona's Gift Shop
Bruce had at work power washing the wall.
More of Bruce's handy work!

One of Bruce's favorite jobs...pump-out wagon

Headed to a beach grill
A few of the things were enjoyed on our days off...

Bubba the alligator!

A day at the beach. Water is usually a beautiful blue but it was a bit stirred up this day.
Rocky Bayou State Park on a week-end off.

Kayaking with Harvey and Carmen at Rocky Bayou State Park.

Klein family reunion at St. George Island

Friends stopping by to visit

An evening dinner cruise on the Solaris

Camping at Twin Lakes Campground

Enjoying time together at Twin Lakes Campground

The flood of April, 2014 - this was our site and the water had receded some!

Owen working with his Papa
To summarize our year in Destin - a great time, family and friends came by for a visit and vacation, met a lot of new friends, all in all a great year!