Grand Canyon Weekend, Fourth of July, 2015

We started out at 7am, heading for Williams, AZ.  Around Barstow I decided to add Hoover Dam to the itinerary.  It only adds an hour to the drive, and somehow the idea of combining one of the largest man-made wonders of the world with one of the largest God-made features on Earth seemed fitting.  So we did that.  Got a few pictures of the dam and what not.  We still made it to Kingman by lunch time to snarf down some In 'n Out, and got to the Grand Canyon Railway Hotel about 2pm.  Nice hotel, great staff.  Check in was a bit slow, but, hey...2pm.  Got in to our room.  3*, but there is a Keurig coffeemaker.  And lots of plugs so we could all recharge everything.

The grounds are cool.  Western sculptures, and the depot is right here, along with the gift shop, the buffet, a pub and an indoor pool/jacuzzi and a small gym.    Then we headed over to the depot to pick up our vouchers for the rest of the trip.  This package includes 1 night in Williams, dinner in the all you can eat buffet, breakfast, the train to Grand Canyon Village, a bus tour of the G.C., 1 night at the Maswik Lodge in the Village, then the train ride back to the GCR Hotel for one night, and another dinner and breakfast before check out.  And I snagged a pretty good deal.  Four of us for $1000 total.
Anyway, we got our vouchers, and decided to make use of the pool for a bit before heading to dinner. 

The buffet was pretty good, actually.  Not a huge selection, but all the basics and everything was fresh and hot.  There was live entertainment - a pretty good guitar player/singer doing mostly western classics.  The staff in the restaurant were outstanding.  Everyone is very friendly, but the guy at the pasta station was especially good with the kids, telling them about the train and all.

After dinner we decided to drive up to Flagstaff for some fireworks.  Honestly, I could have passed on that, but the kids were pretty sure they would die if they didn't see a fireworks show on the Fourth of July.  Mostly consisted of sitting in traffic for the parking lot, then mingling with a couple thousand of my closest friends, then sitting on a wet golf course (we had a few gully washers at various points during the day, though it was pretty clear for the show) for an hour, and then another hour of sitting in a parking lot trying to get out.  But I guess the kids liked it, so it's all good.

We didn't get back to the hotel til 11pm, and the kids were all zonked by 11:05.   And now it's 6:30 and I am going to kick their butts out of bed so we can get organized for the trip into the Grand Canyon.  I am sure there will be pictures today!


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