Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Some Family Fun in NC

For the past four days, we've been in Black Mountain, NC at the triennial McGoldrick family reunion at the Red Rocker Inn. While we had a great time seeing everyone, the breakfast was so good at this B&B, it threatened to upstage the rest of the activities.
On Thursday, we headed to the Biltmore Estate with some of our family who had arrived early.
My two nephews had the handsets that guided their tours. My youngest nephew, Keating, was particularly entertaining. He would enter the number of the room and then recite random facts to the crowd around us (whether he knew them or not). He liked the secret doors and the basement the best.
I also liked the basement the best. This amazing pool room was a bit hard to photograph, but was impressive nonetheless.
Before heading out to see the gardens, we stopped for lunch at the Stable Cafe, which used to house all the estate's horses. I had this amazing lentil burger with a tomato and cucumber salad.
We were lucky enough to be visiting during the Chihuly exhibit, so we enjoyed the tour of the gardens even more. I loved the aquatic plants and sculptures the best.
Chihuly glass and flowers is a hard combo to beat.
On Friday, we headed to Mount Mitchell State Park for a family hike and picnic. 
Nephews in the rocks along the trail.
On Saturday, we went on a walking tour of Asheville. I really liked this Catholic church. (Also, sorry for the speedy highlights, but I was doing my best to visit and not be the annoying picture taker the whole time.)
After the walking tour and a quick lunch, a group of us headed for a tour of the Eastern outpost of the Sierra Nevada Brewery 
Brian and I have been on quite a few brewery tours before, but we'd never been in a hops room. This one even let you take a bud and rub it in your hands to check out the aroma of the different kinds - so cool!
And, of course, the tasting at the end is always fun. Grandpa (left), my sister-in-law, Sarah (to his right), and my brother-in-law, Andrew (to his right).
The 36 of us before our final family meal and the passing of the torch (literally) to the next hosts for 2021's reunion. Our cousins Peter & Carmen will be hosting us in Estes Park, CO! Thanks for another great gathering all (and to Ryan for hosting).

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