Another fabulous Big Bounce America weekend has come and gone! We had so much fun at last years Big Bounce America event in Buffalo, that we had to go back again this year! We heard that there were so many new additions to the event that we just HAD to check them out!!!
Since we like to think of ourselves as pros at this point, I figured I would share a few tips since so many people keep asking me if the Junior Session is “safe” from crazy older kids? I figured I would give everyone some peace of mind here and tell you yes!!!! Your kiddos are safe and give you a few other fabulous tips you may need to enjoy your day at the Big Bounce America!!
1. Be Prepared To Run ~ while I feel like adults will have just as much fun as the kiddos, be prepared to run all over that bounce house! It wasn’t just my daughter bouncing off at lighting speed. Everywhere I would look I would see a parent racing after their kiddo. You don’t realize how fast your kids are until you look away for 2 seconds and they are off to another corner of the bounce house! So much fun, but you will literally lose 729202 calories from all that bouncing and chasing you will do! No need to work out for about a week now lol.
2. Pick A Meeting Spot ~ Just Incase you do lose your kiddo, before you start to even bounce, choose a meeting spot. If your kiddo loses you, they know where to head. We chose the DJ booth since it was smack in the middle. Easy to find and you can still have fun if you get separated bouncing to the tunes! Thankfully we did not have to use our meeting spot, but it did give me peace of mind knowing we had one just Incase the unthinkable happened!
3. Who Can Bounce?? ~ Any kids aged 7 & under and their parents/caretakers!!! No big kids allowed which is nice if you have little ones. Unfortunately this does mean if you are the mama to a few older kids and want to attend Big Bounce America as a family, you will need to attend the older kid sessions since older kids are not permitted.
4. What Goes On Inside The Bounce House? ~ Inside the bounce house they have inflatable activities such as basketball hoops, obstacle runs! They have inflatable chill out areas (big boats, oversized sofas, palm trees etc), inflatable animals and characters for you to grab a photo with, slides, ball pits and all manner of awesome entertainment!!! There is also an awesome DJ Spinning age appropriate tunes such as Frozen and Dora the Explore. So fun and nice since every kid trying to do these activities is under 7! You don't have to worry about too much since all the kids are pretty young! No fighting etc, just a bunch of little ones having fun.
5. Bring Water! ~ While yes, Big Bounce America does have a water stand with Dixi Cups, I would recommend bringing your own water. You will be crazy thirsty after all that bouncing and depending on how your event is set up, the water station may be far away. Our station was on the complete opposite end of the Main bounce house. Bring a water bottle! You will thank me later!!!
Have you been to the Big Bounce America?
And just like that, another Ellicottville Summer Music Festival has come and gone! I swear this summer is flying by way too fast! Before you know it, the fabulous sunny weather will be replaced by, do I even want to say the word?! That fluffy cold white stuff that falls from the sky. Ughhh!!!!!! No bueno!!!
As usual, our besties over at the Ellicottville Travel buero invited us out to enjoy all the music festivities taking place during the Summer Music Festival.
Since I already have several reviews up on the blog from years past, I thought I would do something different this year. Give you my tips on how to get the most of if your Ellicottville Summer Music Festival experience!
1. Bring Your Own Booze! ~ That’s right, while you can buy your drinks on site if you don’t feel like lugging a cooler, you can bring your own drinks! I’m all about saving that coin when possible, so I always bring my own drinks!!! Not every often you can attend a music event and bring your own anything! Take advantage and save that $$$$$!
2. Dress In Layers ~ Trust me! You will be sweating all day. It is summer after all! But once that sun goes down, you will be freezing. You have to remember that this music festival takes place on a ski slope. It gets chilly at night regardless of the time of year. I suggest wearing a tank top or tee shirt and having a hoodie on hand when you start to get chilly!
3. Wear Old Shoes ~ I don’t know if it’s just our luck or what, but the last few years we have attended the Ellicottville Summer Music Festival, there are patches of mud! Save your fabulous kicks for another event and toss on a pair of sneakers/sandals/boots you won’t mind getting a tad bit dirty.
4. Do Not Purchase Kids Tickets ~ The first year we attended we had no clue about this, kids under 12 are FREE! That’s right, do not purchase your kiddos a separate ticket. I requested wayyyy too many tickets out first year because I assumed kids needed their own ticket! They can get in for free with a paid adult! Score!!!
5. Come Hungry ~ Ellicottville is Home to so many fabulous dining establishments. Ellicottville Brewing Company & Dina’s are two of my favs! I suggest checking out one of the local restaurants before heading to the show!
6. Show Early For “Good Seats” ~ If you didn’t purchase VIP, I would suggest showing up at least 30 minutes before showtime. Those lawn spots in front of the stage fill up pretty fast! Everyone wants that prime viewing location!
Do you enjoy music festivals & concerts in the park?!
The world’s biggest bounce house is coming to Buffalo. AGAIN!!!! We had a blast last year at The Big Bounce America Buffalo and can’t wait to bounce the afternoon away this year as well!!!!
Big Bounce America will be in the Queen City on weekends from August 9-18. Plenty of dates so there is bound to be one that you can clear your calendar and head up and bounce!
The Big Bounce America is described as a “magical, candy-colored inflatable castle with 10,000 square feet of fun, games and laughter that can be enjoyed by all ages.”
In the middle of all the fun, there is a stage with a DJ/MC hosting games and competitions and playing the latest tunes!!! WooHoo!!!
Here are the times you can go check it out at Buffalo’s Outer Harbor (225 Fuhrmann Boulevard):
• Friday – Aug. 9, 16 – 1 to 5 p.m.
• Saturday – Aug. 10, 17 – 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.
• Sunday – Aug. 11, 18 – 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Not in Buffalo? No biggie since Big Bounce America tour will roll into the following cities in 2019, so get ready for an event not to be missed:
Albany, Atlanta, Austin, Boca Raton, Boston, Brooklyn, Buffalo, Chicago, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Denver, Des Moines, Detroit, Houston, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, Minneapolis Nashville, New Orleans, Orlando, Philadelphia, Portland,
Providence, Riverside, Sacramento, San Diego,
San Francisco, San Jose, Santa Barbara, Santa Rosa, St. Louis, St. Petersburg, Tampa, Tucson, Washington D.C.
To spend the afternoon at The Big Bounce America attraction is $10-$25. Now that’s a killer deal if you ask me!!!
For more info click away here!
Anyone else a huge fan of “staycations”?!? With my hubby’s crazy work schedule, it can be tough to go off on a spontaneous vacation as a whole family. Thankfully, living in WNY, we are so close to so many fabulous travel destinations. My favorite? Niagara Falls! A few weeks ago we decided to head up to the falls and take my daughter on the Maid of the Mist. She had never been and we felt like she was finally old enough where she would remember her first experience.
When I spammed my Insta with Niagara Falls pics, I was shocked when I was flooded with questions. I swear everyone wanted details on the Maid of the Mist!! So today I’m doing exactly that! Giving you all the tips you can possibly need to make your trip on the Maid of the Mist as epic as possible!
1. Wear Sunglasses ~ yes, you are provided with a free poncho, but if you’re a girly girl like me and caked your makeup on for those insta-worthy pics, pack a pair of shades and toss them on when the boat takes off. I didn’t even need to touch my makeup up afterwards thanks to my handy dandy poncho and my shades!
2. Bring Your Camera ~ This was the one question I was asked over and over. Is it safe to bring your fancy camera? The answer is yes! While you do get wet, you do not get soaked. Mist is the key word here! Just tuck that camera under your poncho when you’re not using it and it will be fine!
3. Go On A Weekday ~ We headed up to the falls on a bright, sunny 85 degree summer day. It was a Monday and there were zero lines!!! I was pretty excited about this because in the past, I had waited quite a while to board. Apparently Monday’s are the day to head to the falls!
4. Wait To Put Poncho On ~ when you first board the boat, you will see everyone put their ponchos on in a hurry. I was one of those people. It gets really hot with that poncho on! I would wait until the boat is about to take off and then put it on. You will literally be standing around for about 5-10 minutes while people board feeling like you’re in a sauna on a hot summer day with that thing on!! Just wait!!!!
5. Top and Bottom Decks ~ There is a huge difference! If you’re like me and just wanting to get misted with water to cool off from all that walking you have been doing, head to the bottom deck. I didn’t really get that wet at all and like I mentioned above, didn’t have to fix my makeup! If you’re wanting to get wet, the top deck is for you. Depending on where you stand on the top deck, you can apparently get as soaked as you want. You won’t be finding me there that’s for sure lol.
6. Observation Deck ~ If you want the best insta pics you can possibly get on the American side of the falls, head to the observation deck! You will have the best views of the falls. I would suggest even doing this before you do the excursion if you want family pics in front of the falls. That way you don’t have to worry about anyone being wet afterwards. Everyone will be dry and photo ready!
Have you been on the Maid of the Mist?
Literally my new favorite spot on Chautauqua Lake! Harbor Hotel Carousel Bar! It’s so pretty!!! I just can’t get over how Insta-worthy this spot is. Definitely not the norm here in WNY that’s for sure. The best part?! Chautauqua Harbor Hotel Carousel Bar is just a few minutes away from my house. If I ever get bit by the wanderlust bug and I don’t have a fabulous trip planned for awhile, all I need to do is drive down the road and pretend I’m on vacation all I want!!!
A lakeside Carousel Bar, paying tribute to the grand carousels of yesteryear. The Carousel Bar promises a one-of-kind experience whether for lunch, dinner or sipping cocktails while taking in the spectacular sunsets for which Chautauqua Lake has become famous.
Carousel Bar Summer Hours (July 1-Labor Day weekend):
I thought this would be a fabulous spot to really give you the reasons why I love this spot so much!
1. Champagne Lakeside ~ I didn’t have to purchase a bottle and I wasn’t handed a mini-bottle to pour myself. Legit glasses by the glass!
2. Atmosphere ~ Just look at that view?!? I can just stare off into the lake for hours. I almost feel bad for those drinking with me. I daze off into those water views.
3. Food ~ You can dine at Harbor Hotel without paying for the 5 star dining experience inside. Enjoy pizzas(very flatbread like), wings, and other yummy smaller plates for half the cost of inside!
4. Fire Pits ~ When it starts to get dark, take your beverage fireside!!!
5. Insta-Worthy Photo Opts ~ Nothing better than snapping those pics and having your backdrop look inst-worthy!
6. Not Too Crowded ~ we have yet to experience large crowds, which is super nice. We were just there Friday and while yes, there are people everywhere, you can still snag a seat with ease!
7. Dock Your Boat ~ Have a boat?! Lucky you and we should totally be besties. I am lacking a boat bestie lol.... anyway, you can dock your boat for free and walk right in for a drink.
While this is legit my new summer spot, I will add that drink prices are high. This is a resort after all, so expect to pay resort prices for things like a beer. This is always the one drawback when I bring newbies. Totally worth the extra cost for the views alone if you ask me! Can’t wait for another chance to sip a cocktail at the Carousel Bar.
Do you have any local spots in your neck of the woods that make you feel like you’re on vacation?
CourtneyLynne is former model turned mommy & wifey! When not blogging all things foodie, fashion, travel, mom life & straight up fabulousness to the masses, she can be found chasing her toddler around in 6in stilettos & laughing at her own jokes her glass of wine told her to tell.