On a beautiful spring day (well, actually, we lucked out … after a horrid rain storm cleared and the sky became illuminated by the sun), my daughter Tiffany and I took the trio (8-year-old Todd, 7-year-old Tess, and 4-year-old Tanner) for a Lunch Cruise on the River Queen on the Ohio River. The BB Riverboat Company boasts that it is Cincinnati’s “Premiere” Riverboat Cruise Line.
I am here to tell you that it certainly must be true!
We raced down Interstate 75 from Centerville, through Cincinnati, to the port on the Ohio River. As my car panted and basically collapsed, the five of us broke all speeds set in the last recorded 5K, knocked over, oh, everyone, and boarded the paddle riverboat … the River Queen. (Okay, I thought we were late.)
As we exhaled, a handsome mate certified the trio with testimonials declaring them fit to “captain” the riverboat. Their names were already imprinted on certificates (reservations are recommended) and the captain had already signed their “credentials.” (I’ll frame them tomorrow.) After receiving Captain Hats, the trio then posed at the wheel with Mommy and Meme (may-may).
Another mate ushered us to a window table decorated with red, white, and blue balloons. The children were given their beverages of choice and shrimp to nibble, and we were off! As we cruised, we indulged in a five-course gourmet meal, plenty of spirits, and of course … ice cream!
There was a banjo player on our deck who played a popular variety of music. If one didn’t like his enormous selection, there was something seriously wrong with the listener. The man was exceptionally talented, congenial, and fun! We joined in with some old standards and were transported by the movement of the boat and the background of his banjo to a time when Facebook didn’t make us nuts!
We strolled the three decks. The captain was a gracious, intelligent, well “sailed” man who discussed the Great Lakes, the Edmund Fitzgerald, and various expeditions on the Ohio and other rivers with us. The children could ask no question too small or too large. His charm and intelligence were admirable!
The wait staff was amazingly “on it,” and the bartender provided percussion (glasses, cutlery) from his post for the banjo player. Lunch, cruise, fun!
After a few games of bingo (with prizes), we began to get ready to disembark. The last few selections played by the banjo player were of a patriotic nature, and when he played “God Bless America” people stood, held hands, and sang.
As we resumed packing up, sad to leave, Mr. Banjo broke out into the Tennessee National Anthem, “Rocky Top.” Young and old alike kicked up their heels and the entire deck was dancing!
The family at a table next to us was there to celebrate Mom’s 98th birthday. We were five beginning spring break. People were there for occasions, for fun … to get away from daily life, stress, drama.
If you have an afternoon, if you have a thought about Cincinnati, I would recommend a cruise on the BB Riverboats. My “snaps” to the staff and administration of BB Riverboats and the River Queen!
THANK YOU! THANK YOU! (Todd will be back to captain the next cruise … Tanner and Tess will be happy to help.)
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