Going on a family vacation is one of the many thrills and trials of being a parent. Making memories is fun, yes, but the stress of meeting everyone’s expectations can be tricky. How are you supposed to keep your kids from bickering? How are you and your partner supposed to enjoy a little romance now and again when you’re always with the little ones? What entertaining events and attractions can you schedule that everyone can agree on?
For the family headed to Niagara, these concerns needn’t hold sway. The region is filled with world-class entertainment that’s sure to please even the unhappiest camper among you.
The town of Fort Erie is a perfect example of the wealth of fun in store for you at every turn. From the Railway Museum to Crystal Beach, here are three reasons to take your children to Fort Erie when you head out for your Niagara vacation.
1. Fort Erie Railway Museum
Fort Erie is a great place for any history or military buff to visit, but because it also boasts a railway museum, kids usually like it, too. One of four museums located in Fort Erie, the Railway Museum’s biggest appeal is its actual Canadian National Railway steam engine. Built back in 1948, the steam engine on display was used well into the 1960s — a time when Fort Erie’s rail yard was the third largest in all of Canada.
See plenty of rail-related artifacts and tools, as well as Ridgeway’s original Grand Trunk Railway Station and the CN B-1 station, former functioning railroad stations now being preserved for posterity at the Fort Erie Railway Museum.
2. Crystal Beach
Crystal Beach is a small community within Fort Erie that’s home to one of the most beautiful beaches along the Great Lakes. With beautiful sand and stunning, clear waters, the beach is the perfect place to swim and sun during the summer months, and it’s so calm and serene that, during the cooler months, it makes for a perfect lakeside walk or family football game.
An amusement park operated here for over 100 years, and you can still see vestiges of what it used to offer. After you’ve explored and frolicked, head to Mabel’s Gourmet Pizza for a meal everyone in your party will love.
3. Black History
An important part of North American history, Fort Erie was a prominent stopping point for fugitive enslaved people seeking freedom from slavery in the southern United States. Thanks to its location just across the border from Buffalo, New York, Fort Erie became the new home of many prominent members of the black community such as Josiah Henson, whose autobiography inspired Harriet Beecher Stowe to write “Uncle Tom’s Cabin.”
It was here in Fort Erie that W.E.B. Dubois started the Niagara Movement, which laid the foundation for what would one day be the NAACP. Regardless of your family’s personal history, Fort Erie’s role in the Underground Railroad is one that should be celebrated.
So, get your family to Fort Erie. From the beautiful beach to the pizza and the history, it’s a place you and your children won’t soon forget.