Canal Campground, Grand Rivers (Part 3 and final)

Patti's Restaurant and Mr. Bill's Dining Room

Patti’s Restaurant and Mr. Bill’s Dining Room from an article in “The Lake News” dated June 18, 2015, announcing they had been awarded the “Certificate of Excellence Award” from TripAdvisor

Let’s continue with our time travel from our “Part 2” last post, which you can read here if you missed it.

Patti’s 1880’s Settlement Fine and historic dining in a casual atmosphere! If we heard it once, we heard it a dozen times, we had to eat at Patti’s Restaurant, especially the pork chops! We rarely eat out, saving it for special occasions, family times or when Bill just needs a break from cooking!  We had the opportunity to eat here with our new friends and former neighbors at Columbus-Belmont State Park. They recommended we stay in Canal Campground and gave us lots more pointers. And they also recommended we eat here. They live in Paducah, so it wasn’t too far for them to come join us. And now, of course, we will have to visit them in Paducah on our next trip to Illinois.  It’ll be on the way.

I’m not sure why Patti picked 1880’s as her date. (If anyone knows, please leave us a comment.) You do feel like you are back in time! We loved the place settings and how the servers were dressed, all which added to the 1880s feeling. One unique trademark is the home made bread cooked in a flower pot and served with strawberry butter.

The story of Patti’s is so remarkable. If you click on the hyperlinked website above, you can hear the story from both the Patti, her husband and one son. The video and pictures were done soon after she was diagnosed with a terminal illness.

In essence, Grand Rivers is a small town, I mean small, consisting of about 350 residents. Patti and her husband Bill (Tullar) and their son Chuck are featured. The couple and their three sons stopped in Grand River in 1975 while traveling and Patti just fell in love with it, along with Land Between the Lakes! She had learned to cook at a young age since her mom was in poor health. Her mom would tell her how to cook from her bed. Then, as a mother, Patti had three growing boys, so she perfected her craft. She dreamed of owning her own business so they bought a small place in 1977 and started with Hamburger Patti’s Ice Cream Parlor. Bill continued to work for a time to help support the family while the business grew.

Patti was not really into bookkeeping, apparently, as her first month she was in the hole $8,000. But the business has grown over the nearly 40 years to an $8 million dollar enterprise! They have employed 10,000s of employees and serve 350,000 people a year in this tiny town. The restaurant grew and is now a Settlement and such a joy to visit. I’m sad as I didn’t take any pictures. But this short 2:49 minute video will make you want to take advantage of their package deal and come – unless you want to come and camp at Canal Campground!  Click here to see the video about Patti’s 1880’s Settlement. Warning: Don’t watch this if you are hungry….

Adsmore House and Gardens, gave us a 1907 experience in Princeton, Kentucky.  This house was originally constructed as the Greek Revival-style residence of dry goods merchant John Higgins in 1854. The house was sold to James Hewitt in 1870. In 1900, it was sold again and finally, to John Parker Smith, of the prominent Smith-Garrett family in Princeton. Smith was a banker and his son-in-law, Garrett, was into real estate. They enlarged it into a Colonial Revival style home, adding onto it into a way to house two families. And that was the beginning of the constant enhancements to the house, always staying up with the latest technology advances. And that is really how it got it’s name: Aunt Necie lived in Philadelphia but she came to visit them every year. After a few years, she coined the nickname, Adsmore, because every time she came, they added more!

"Family heirlooms tell history of former Western Kentucky residents" Photo by Sandy Furjanic

“Family heirlooms tell history of former Western Kentucky residents”
Photo by Sandy Furjanic

The house passed on to Smith’s daughter, Mayme (Smith) Garrett, on his death since she and her family also lived in the home. The Garrett’s only had once child, a daughter, Katherine Garrett, who eventually inherited Adsmore and made it her home until her death in September 1984. She bequeathed the Adsmore estate to the trustees of the George Coon Public Library. Her will stipulated that all of its elaborate furnishings be restored and that the house be maintained as a public museum. Along with the residence, she left and endowment for the operation of a museum for 20 years. It is now in its 30th year, thanks to tours, room rentals, donations and the small fees charged for the tours. The trustees have been excellent stewards of this rich heritage.

What was amazing, the last resident, Katherine Garrett (never married), also left an attic full of about 20 trunks full of family treasures, clothing and photographs dating back to the 1800s.  For some reason, as various family members died, their “treasures” were passed onto Katherine. This is what makes it so unique, as it allows us to step back in time to rediscover the life of a prominent Western Kentucky family in seven different settings or time periods, from 1901 to 1914. Oh to have lived during these time periods! We thought 1850 was appealing, but we loved this time period as well. There is so much more to it as we could easily understand the changing lifestyles, political attitudes and clothing styles from the Golden Era through the Progressive Era to modern times. All in this fabulously maintained and pristine home!

Sadly, pictures were not allowed inside….you just have to go to see it and believe! Here are six pictures outside and one of me in the lovely gift shop. (I didn’t buy anything as is my tradition. 😉)  Click on a picture to see the captions, or to make them bigger, double click and it will become a slideshow.

We’ve been in so many historic homes, probably the largest collections in Charleston, South Carolina. But to us, this was the best preserved as it contains all the original belongings to the family, along with a rich history of stories and activities. While many of the other homes we’ve visited, some had original furnishings, but mainly they were supplemented by “period” pieces.  Much of the actual family history was not preserved as magnificently as this one.

Our final time travel was actually space travel as we explored our solar system and beyond! It was so stiflingly hot, temperatures were registered in the high 90’s but the heat index reached 105! We had to find cool inside place and that was the Golden Pond Planetarium and Observatory in LBL. We didn’t take any pictures outside and couldn’t inside the Planetarium.

What a great experience we had inside. First of all, they accepted the “America the Beautiful” Senior Citizen pass, but you have to ask if they accept them. Since we got that discount, we watched two of the presentations (two for one pricing). We initially thought we’d just see one,  “Wildest Weather in the Solar System,” but it was so good, we stayed to watch the next presentation, “IBEX,” a presentation on the Interstellar Boundary Explorer. Both were just fascinating.

We’ve only visited a planetarium one other time. It was an okay presentation as it left us thinking, “Ok, we’ve been there and done that….” We really did this just to escape the heat. But we can say this was just amazing and we highly recommend it. First of all, they have very comfortable seating and the “guide” was humble, saying it was really a novice, but he was a wealth of information and kept our interest!

The wildest weather was a “National Geographic spectacular journey to witness the most beautiful, powerful, and mysterious weather phenomena in the solar system. From a storm the size of a 100-megaton hydrogen bomb, to a 400-year-old hurricane, to a dust tempest that could engulf entire planets, you’ll be glad you live on Earth! Sponsored by Jesse D. Jones College of Science, Engineering, and Technology at Murray State University.”  It just left you in awe….

Interstellar Boundary Explorer is the first NASA spacecraft to image and map the dynamic interactions taking place where the hot solar wind slams into the cold expanse of space.

Interstellar Boundary Explorer is the first NASA spacecraft to image and map the dynamic interactions taking place where the hot solar wind slams into the cold expanse of space.

Interstellar Boundary Explorer: Bill was a bit skeptical about the IBEX presentation, but we did love our visit to NASA a few years ago, so why not stay and see it? After all, it was just so hot outside. 😉We left with a greater appreciation of space exploration, but still not really seeing if it is worth the expense of our tax dollars. We think our taxes no longer support NASA or it’s being phased out. We’re not sure. Comment below if you know! Here is it’s “Mission Statement”

Goals: IBEX, or Interstellar Boundary Explorer, is designed to detect the edge of our solar system. Operating from Earth orbit, the spacecraft uses neutral atom images to detect particles from the termination shock at the boundary between our solar system and interstellar space.

Accomplishments: IBEX made the first all-sky maps of the heliosphere. One of the immediate results was a surprise: the maps are bisected by a bright, winding ribbon of unknown origin. The finding could change our understanding of the heliosphere.

I must say, this has been one of my favorite places to visit now! What a fabulous eight days we had as we continue across Kentucky! Next stop is Cave City (yes, still in Kentucky), which is just outside Mammoth Cave National Park. And we will have another opportunity for time travel!

The highest heavens belong to the Lord, but the earth He has given to mankind. Psalm 115:16

3 thoughts on “Canal Campground, Grand Rivers (Part 3 and final)

  1. […] Next up, let’s go to the 1880s, 1907 and to outer space! […]


  2. I enjoyed stepping back in time with you in this post. Patti’s 1880’s Settlement looks like a fun place. And seeing all of the family heirlooms at the Ardsmore House must have been a real treat.

    Liked by 1 person

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