How to Speak Canadian

image001Canada, like most countries and regions throughout the world, has been around long enough to take on its own unique flavor, norms, and customs that are different than what you’ll find elsewhere. One of the areas where this distinctive flavor is most notable is in the way native Canadians speak, including the language they use. Whether you’re booking a stay in Niagara Falls for the first time or the 20th, here’s a fun, little primer on some words and phrases that will help you speak with all the charm and expertise of a local.

Money Talk

Canadian money is, in many ways, like the money from other places — some of it is printed on paper and some of it is minted into coins. For the newcomer to Canadian soil, however, the money talk can be a little confusing, especially surrounding the $1 and $2 coins. Known as a “toonie,” the $2 coin was put into circulation in 1996 and is not to be confused with a newcomer to Boston. The $1 coin is known as a “loonie” because of the loon who image graces it.

Coffee Talk

Ordering coffee in Canada isn’t likely to get you into trouble, but understanding how most Canadians order it will be helpful nonetheless. Many Canadians, when ordering coffee, simply ask for a “Double Double,” which means a regular coffee with two creams and two sugars. So, if you don’t want your coffee sweet and creamy, be sure to specify that when ordering.

Food Talk

Chances are good that you’ve been what Canadians call “gut-foundered” before and you didn’t even know it. Any time you’re hungry to the point of lacking any and all discernment or care about what you eat, you’re gut-foundered.

Eating cold, leftover pizza you found under your roommate’s bed? That’s a classic example of being gut-foundered. Another slang term that can accompany both pizza and being gut-foundered is the “two-four,” which is what beer-loving Canadians call a case due to the fact that it has 24 beers in it.

Clothing Talk

image003There are a number of clothing items that, while they may look identical to items worn in other parts of the world, have distinctly Canadian names. Some examples include:

  • Gitch. This refers to a pair of men’s or boy’s underwear.
  • Gotch. This is the female version of the gitch.
  • Toque. The toque is most common winter hat worn by Canadians.

Random Talk

Other common Canadian terms that you’ll hear when you’re out and about (pronounced aboot) Niagara Falls and the surrounding area include:

  • Deke. This word is a reference to faking out a hockey opponent, but it’s commonly used as a synonym for any time someone takes a detour.
  • Mountie. This word refers to any member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.
  • Matrimonial cake. Sold at bakeries, a matrimonial cake has nothing to do with weddings. It’s simply a date square or tart.

Regardless of whether you try them on yourself, keep your ear attuned to these words and phrases the next time you’re north of the border for an experience of Canada that’s distinctly Canadian.

Record Store Day in Niagara

image001The third Saturday of every April marks an international holiday known as Record Store Day. At once a celebration of vinyl records, the people who love them, and the bands that make them, Record Store Day is also a celebration of independent record stores and their owners, who are — more often than not — denizens of taste, culture, and art.

Record lovers have seen their value and importance in the community rising steadily once again, thanks to the enduring sound quality and the amazing artwork that so often accompanies vinyl. For lovers of music and local businesses, Record Store Day is the perfect time to show your affection, especially for the visitor staying in Niagara Falls, because the area has a few excellent record stores that will be marking the occasion.

Not long ago, it seemed like digital music would wholly usurp vinyl as the way people experienced recorded music, and although its popularity certainly dropped, vinyl never really went away, and now, it looks like its popularity is on the upswing again. With the Wall Street Journal reporting that 2014 vinyl sales increased by 49 percent over the previous year, and this year looking to surpass that, there’s never been a better time wander into an independent record store — especially on Record Store Day. Here is some of what you can look forward to and where to get it.

What’s Happening

image003The most exciting reason to head into a record store on April, 18th 2015 is because of all the vinyl releases are coming out that day in record stores only. While each local store will have local offerings that can’t be gotten elsewhere, national and international acts put out records that are distributed all over, from rare, never-before-heard B sides to classics that are out of print. Here is a sampling of what’s coming out this Record Store Day:

  • Johnny Cash, Koncert v. Praze. This record features a live concert recording of the Man in Black when he performed in Prague in 1983.
  • Miles Davis, The Prestige 10 Inch LP Collection Volume 2. These recordings are from when Davis was the bandleader of Prestige. All the songs are from 1954, and they’re reproduced with original artwork.
  • Goldfrapp, Felt Mountain. This is the first reissue of the British duo’s 2000 release. Original copies of it routinely sell for more than $100.
  • The Sugarhill Gang, The Best Of. A double 12-inch set, this release features all the hits from one of hip-hop’s seminal acts.

If you’re planning on being in the Niagara region the third weekend of April or after, pencil in some time to experience Record Store Day at one of these area stores:

  • Ragged Glory CD & LP Exchange. Located on Queen Street in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Ragged Glory specializes in vintage vinyl and video games.
  • Shop Radio Cast. This newly opened boutique record store just opened on Main Street in Niagara Falls, Ontario, but they’ve been doing business online for over seven years.
  • Music Matters. This Niagara Falls, New York store has been trading in vinyl, CDs, video games, and more since 2008.

Fill your vacation with music by hitting Record Store Day when you visit Niagara.

Bowling in Niagara

image001One of the best parts about taking a vacation — especially with your family — is that the simple act of carving out time to spend together allows you to do all the fun things you could do back home but never
seem to make time for. From mini golf to matinee movies, going on vacation to a new location allows the freedom to more fully focus on the art of having fun, even on those easy afternoons when we don’t want to totally reinvent the wheel.

Niagara Falls is home to plenty of out-of-the-ordinary fun, like a giant, indoor waterpark and climbing behind the waterfalls, but it also offers a lot of the ordinary kind of fun, too — like bowling. That being said, in Niagara, ordinary bowling is anything but.

When you go bowling in the Niagara region, you have your choice of two similar, but distinct, games. Regular 10-pin bowling is certainly an option, and if you’d like to try your hand and luck with bowling’s most popular version, you can head to any of these bowling alleys:

  • Strike Rock ‘N Bowl at Clifton Hill
  • Cataract Bowl (which also has a family fun center)
  • Bowl-O-Rama Lanes in Welland

However, the Niagara Falls region is home to another type of bowling called five-pin, and if you’ve never heard of it — let alone played it before — it’s a game all its own.

Five-Pin Bowling

image003Five-pin bowling is a type of bowling played only in Canada. Invented at the beginning of the 20th century by a Toronto bowling alley owner whose customers found 10-pin too tiring. The less strenuous version involves five pins that are about 25 percent smaller than a standard pin and feature a heavy band made out of rubber around their centers.

Unlike 10-pin, a five-pin ball is small enough to hold in one hand, which makes five-pin a great game for kids. Because the balls are lighter and smaller, they don’t need finger holes.

To start play, the five smaller pins are arranged at the end of a standard wooden lane in a V-shape. The ball is rolled with the intention of knocking down as many pins as possible just like in 10-pin. However, in five-pin, each pin is worth a different number of points. The center pin is worth five points; the pins on each side of it are worth three points each; and the two pins at the farthest edges are worth two points each. The total you can get for knocking down all five is 15 points.

Players play ten frames, and each frame allows a player three balls to topple as many pins as possible. Scoring is like it is in 10-pin, so that a strike adds in the scores of the next two balls, while a spare adds in the score of the next ball. A perfect game in five-pin bowling occurs when a player scores 12 strikes in a row across the 10 frames and ends up with a score of 450. You can five-pin bowl at these establishments:

  • Fairview Lanes in St. Catherines
  • Bowl-O-Rama Lanes in Welland
  • Hillside Lanes in Welland
  • Pla-More Bowling Lanes in St. Catherines

For a game that’s both familiar and brand-new, try five-pin bowling the next time you and your family find yourselves north of the border.

Fallsview Indoor Waterpark Makes List of “7 of the World’s Best Indoor Water Parks”

TeensWavePoolFallsview Indoor Waterpark has been named one of the “World’s Best Indoor Water Parks” in a recent travel article published by Paste Magazine. The article lists seven thrilling indoor waterparks found all around the world that “defy the laws of nature and offer visitors a summer-like vacation even in the dead of winter.”

With 16 thrilling waterslides, a 1,000-gallon tipping bucket, full-sized wave pool, adult-only Jacuzzis, plunge bowl, outdoor activity pool, and much more, Fallsview Indoor Waterpark offers amazing fun for people of all ages. With an incredibly unique location directly across the street from the spectacular Niagara Falls, Fallsview Indoor Waterpark is a world-class destination that has everything you need for a thrilling and fun indoor water experience!

3 Reasons to Take a Family Vacation to Niagara Falls

image001Planning a family vacation that satisfies everyone is no small task, and many parents just assume it’s a pipe dream better left alone. After all, how are you supposed to find a destination that appeals as much to grownups as it does to your little ones, especially since their tastes and preferences so rarely overlap?

Long known as a popular honeymoon destination, these days find Niagara Falls full of families out to achieve the impossible: Experience an all-around great family vacation. With a plethora of options available to the vacationing family, it’s possible Niagara might become your family’s favorite vacation spot. From the beauty of the place to the learning opportunities and fun available, here are three reasons to load up your family and head to Niagara Falls.

1. It’ll Be Beautiful

The dramatic beauty of the Niagara Falls area isn’t just something adults can marvel over, it’s something people of all ages can readily and unabashedly enjoy. While the majesty of the three waterfalls will certainly be the most obviously dazzling sight in the region, there’s plenty more to see. Depending on the time of year you visit, you and your children can feast your eyes on an astonishing array of beautiful things, including:

  • The landscape. From rustic vineyards to farms and pristine countryside, the land around Niagara is lovely any time to year.
  • Dufferin Islands. This 10-acre park includes a handful of small islands joined by quaint bridges and footpaths.
  • The Floral Clock. One of the largest floral clocks on the planet, its face is filled with an array of fresh flowers.
  • The Winter Festival of Lights. Over 125-animated light displays and 3-million lights illuminate the Niagara Parks Winter Wonderland each winter.

2. It’ll Be Educational

image003Most parents would love to take a family vacation that sparked their children’s curiosity and helped them learn, and Niagara Falls is exactly that kind of place. Here are just some of the places where fun-filled education occurs:

  • Bird Kingdom. In addition to housing the world’s largest free-flying aviary, Bird Kingdom also includes a 125-year old house from Java, an exhibit that includes over 15 nocturnal species of animal, a 40-foot waterfall, and more. It’s the perfect place to learn about birds and other fascinating creatures from around the world.
  • Niagara Park’s Butterfly Conservatory. This lush and tropical conservatory includes over 2,000 butterflies representing over 45 species and includes a window where you and your kids can watch butterflies emerge from their cocoons for the first time.
  • Marineland. Marineland of Canada will give you and your children an up-close experience with a wide variety of marine life and other animals, including dolphins, walruses, and Beluga whales. The 2015 season opens in mid-May.

3. It’ll Be Fun

Finally, you should bring your family to Niagara Falls, because sometimes you just need to partake in some pure, unadulterated fun. Whether you hole up among the 125,000 square feet that make up the Fallsview Indoor Waterpark (and yes, there is an adults-only section) or you engage in some friendly competition with one another at Wild Safari Mini Putt, there are scores of fun-filled attractions that will keep each one of you engaged and happy throughout your stay.

From wee ones to grandparents, few places offer such a wealth of family amusements as does Niagara Falls.

5 Reasons to Visit Niagara Falls in March

image001In some people’s estimation, March isn’t one of the better months to take in Niagara Falls. Winter often has the place in its firm and chilly grip, and when it doesn’t, it can make for a very wet and muddy time that’s still plenty cool.

Additionally, some of the better known tourist attractions will be closed in anticipation of the peak tourist season that’s still months away. However, even with those tally marks in the cons column, for certain types of travelers, March is the perfect time to visit Niagara Falls. From saving money to enjoying a slower pace, here are five excellent reasons to visit Niagara Falls during the month of March.

1. Fewer People

While it’s possible to thrive on the energy of large crowds like those that fill the city of Niagara Falls from June to August, enjoying the natural splendor of the Falls without the teeming throngs can feel downright luxurious to some. March sees much fewer tourists to the area, so you can take in all the sights and sounds with plenty of elbow room and breathing space. It’s easier to get reservations at the finest restaurants, and you and any travelling companions will be able to focus more of your energy on the place and one another.

2. Lower Rates

If you’re vacationing on a budget, March is definitely the best time to travel to the region. Due to the reduced number of visitors and the law of supply and demand, almost every hotel drops its rates. You can then either save some cash on your lodging or book nicer accommodations than you normally might. Either way, it’s a benefit vacationers at the height of summer never get to enjoy.

3. There’s Still Plenty to Do

image003While some of the more popular attractions are closed in March (like the Maid of the Mist voyage), there is still plenty to do in and around Niagara Falls. Visit award-winning vineyards. Spend the afternoon marveling at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! or speeding down waterslides at a waterpark that is great any time of the year. Enjoy an evening of spine-tingling magic at the Greg Frewin Theatre. While the offerings are a bit slimmer, there’s still a vast array of entertaining options at Niagara Falls all month long.

4. The Slower Pace

It’s hard to explain the difference in pace between Niagara in March and Niagara in July unless you’ve experienced both, but different they are. While it’s true that the large groups of people from around the world, the street performers, and long days make for a high energy experience at the height of summer, the more serene pace of the city and the area right around the falls during March has its own charm. Especially if you’re looking to relax and rejuvenate, March’s calm is ideal.

5. The Food!

No matter what time of year you visit the Niagara region, the eating is always good. Due to the region’s rich farm heritage and a number of talented chefs who have put a major emphasis on utilizing local foods, there are some remarkable restaurants that will make any trip in March a delight. Two of the city’s finest are Windows by Jaime Kennedy and the Rainbow Room by Massimo Capra.

So, head to Niagara Falls this March. Whether you spend a day or a week, there will be more than enough to catch your fancy and make you glad you came.

What Not to Do on Your Family Vacation in Niagara Falls

image001A family vacation can be a pleasant affair, with every family member bursting with utter enjoyment — or a family vacation can be abysmal, boring, and filled with sullenness from adults and children alike. Generally, there is no in-between: Either the trip was a roaring success or a disastrous failure, with nothing in between.

More often than not, a trip to Niagara Falls ends in the first scenario, with parents and kids utterly content, and eagerly looking forward to their next vacation to this city of wonder. However, we have seen unfortunate situations where families appear to regret their existence entirely. Still, after years of study on this precise phenomenon, we are proud to report that there are a few preventative measures and remedies for families who are particularly susceptible to taking terrible trips. We promise, if you come to Niagara Falls and follow our careful instructions on what not to do, you and your kids will never want to leave.

Don’t Miss Fallsview Indoor Waterpark

It is hard to miss the fantastic structure that makes up Canada’s largest indoor waterpark, yet some families seem to pass it by without a second glance. That’s their mistake, as inside, Fallsview offers dozens of thrilling slides, dozens more wet and wild play areas, and a handful of pools for swimming and leisure.

Your children will have a blast climbing up and sliding down the various play structures around the park. Since getting wet is a childhood pastime, they won’t be able to help romping around the Beach House, exploring the Jungle Playland, and drenching each other senseless underneath the thousand-gallon tipping bucket. Meanwhile you and your significant other can enjoy endless drinks from the Planet Hollywood Beach Club bar and restaurant and laze around the pool for a full day of relaxation.

Don’t Forget to Tour Niagara’s Various Wildlife Parks

image003Too many people expect Niagara Falls to only be a developed metropolis, and they pay attention only to the shops, arcades, and casino games in busy downtown. While the tourist district of Niagara Falls is inarguably one of the best in the world, the Niagara Parks system is a haven for many indigenous plants and animals that have long called the region home. Walking around Niagara’s wilderness, you may very well spot some of the area’s most fascinating creatures, including red tail foxes and eagles.

Niagara Falls is comfortably placed in the verdant valleys of southern Ontario, but when you and your family come to Niagara Falls, you can also venture into the tropics and to see and feel plants and animals from more exotic reaches of the Earth. Safari Niagara contains wondrous beasts such as African lions and giraffes, and the Bird Kingdom can provide hands-on encounters with macaws, pythons, and Nile monitors.

Don’t Ignore the Museums Around Niagara Falls

Parents who take their kids on vacation without intending to educate and enlighten about the world at large are robbing their children of excellent opportunities to expand their minds. Niagara Falls has an extensive geologic and cultural history that it is proud to share with visitors through a variety of fantastic museums. While you are here, swing by any of the following institutions of learning to make your kids’ break from school just as educational as a day of classes.

  • Niagara Falls History Museum
  • Laura Secord Homestead
  • Daredevil Hall of Fame
  • Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Niagara Falls
  • Battleground Hotel Museum

Castellani Art Museum

4 Reasons to Head to Niagara Falls for Your Family’s Spring Break

image001Not everyone loves the roaring, drunken throngs of barely legal revelers that accompany many spring break destinations, but that doesn’t mean you aren’t looking for a good excuse to get out of town and enjoy your time off.

Niagara Falls boasts a surprising amount of fun activities during the months of March and April — prime spring break times — especially if you’re looking to take in some fun with your children. From a celebration of nighttime creatures to an enormous indoor water park, here are four distinct ways to enjoy Niagara Falls during your spring break.

1. “Nocturnal: Creatures of the Night” Exhibit

The Niagara Parks Commission’s Butterfly Conservatory is the site of a new exhibit that showcases 15 different nocturnal species. Hands-on and educational, this exhibit was designed by Little Ray’s Reptile Zoo of Ottawa, a one-of-a-kind zoo and animal education outreach program that is also one of the country’s biggest sanctuaries for reptiles that were once pets. As curators of the exhibit, Little Ray’s is supplying the Butterfly Conservatory with well-trained zoo educators, who will lead interactive sessions, answer questions, and engage young and old alike in learning about fascinating nocturnal fauna. Featured species include:

  • image003Burmese Python
  • The Common Snapping Turtle
  • Emperor Scorpion
  • Leopard Gecko
  • And more!

2. “Nature”

Running through April 19, Nature is a fascinating show at the Niagara Falls History Museum that centers on the importance of biodiversity to all of life on Earth. Exhibits showcase the complex relationships that exist between species and within habitats, as well as the remarkable gene pools found in the natural world. Threats to biodiversity are showcased, in addition to some of the efforts being made to protect it. One notable highlight of the show is an exhibit exploring owl biology and behavior that includes 11 stunning owl specimens.

3. Musical Dinner Theatre

“Oh Canada Eh?” is a celebrated and long-running dinner musical that has been a must-see production for decades. Well, for limited time, you can enjoy the “Oh Canada Eh?” cast as they try their hands, feet, and voices at an entirely new musical. “At the Movies” is a musical revue-style show that features your favorite songs from some of Hollywood’s best-loved sound tracks, including dramas, comedies, animated movies, and horror films. This show also comes complete with a family-style meal that runs five courses and is served to the audience by the show’s performers.

4. Fallsview Indoor Waterpark

Wouldn’t it be great to spend spring break at the beach? While Niagara Falls isn’t a warm weather destination spot — especially in March and April — you and your brood can still enjoy all the watery fun you can handle at Fallsview Indoor Waterpark. With over 125,000 square feet dedicated to water-based delights, you can spend all day in the warm, wet park and never run out of things to do. Your children will love skittering between the massive waterslides, 1,000 gallon tipping bucket, and the full-sized wave pool, and when you need a break from the delirious mayhem, you can relax in one of the adult-only Jacuzzis.

Don’t spend another spring break cooped up at home or wishing college-aged revelers away. Instead, head to Niagara Falls for these four excellent family-friendly options.

Keeping Kids Active in Niagara Falls


WPblog7.jpegChildhood obesity is at an all-time high due to the sedentary activities enjoyed by millions of American kids as well as the sugary, processed foods targeted directly at young taste buds. However, most experts argue that the obesity epidemic is easily remedied by raising the next generation with a mind toward healthy diet and exercise habits.

Modern parents must be extra careful to set good examples on vacation as well as at the home. Though vacations are a time of rest and relaxation, these qualities can also be found in high-energy, thrilling activities — many of which can easily be found in Niagara Falls.

Playing at Fallsview

Many fitness experts laud swimming as one of the best exercises out there, for kids and adults. They say that swimming efficiently works muscles of the entire body, from the arms and shoulders to the legs and buttocks, without the harsh, shattering impact on the skeleton imposed by other forms of aerobic activity, like running or jumping rope. Plus, water is 12 times as dense as air, meaning it works the body harder than land-based exercises.

That’s why bringing kids to Fallsview Indoor Waterpark is inarguably the best way to encourage fitness on a Niagara Falls vacation. Fallsview is designed for fun — with dozens of waterslides, pools, play areas, and more — but it has the added benefit of keeping kids’ bodies engaged for the duration of their visit.

Hiking the Forest Trails

WPblog8.jpegNiagara is a lush, verdant region filled with wilderness, and kids love nothing more than learning about and exploring nature. Even couch potatoes won’t be able to resist a journey through thriving woodlands, as it offers the opportunity to see in person flora and fauna usually reserved for books and documentaries. Plus, hiking is an excellent workout that leads to stronger leg and back muscles as well as healthier hearts and lungs.

Niagara Falls, a city that celebrates a natural wonder of the world, is devoted to preserving nature, and thus offers families countless winding trails for wonderful walks. The Niagara Glen is a particularly rich area of wilderness that also contains carefully curated gardens and a beautifully arranged floral clock.

Wandering Clifton Hill

Every activity requires calories — some house-bound parents try to tabulate calories burned cleaning and shopping — which means that any activity that gets kids up and moving will have a positive effect on their health. Even traditionally childish games like lava monster and hopscotch contribute to an active lifestyle, as well as an active imagination.

Even parents who find their young ones apathetic about outdoor adventure will see their kids running wild at Clifton Hill. This hub of attractions, including restaurants, shopping, theaters, and even an arcade, will spur any child into action, as he or she scrambles to do and see everything. The Ghost Blaster and the Niagara SkyWheel are rides well worth a wait in line, and the Canadian Midway is full of all the absolute best games (and prizes).

The next time you are looking for a family-friendly destination with plenty of places to keep kids active, look no further than Niagara Falls.

How to Keep Kids Safe and Wet in Fallsview Waterpark

WPblog3.jpegA visit to Fallsview Indoor Waterpark is thrilling for almost every guest in Niagara Falls. Dozens of water slides as well as plenty of pools and play areas offer full days of fun for families and couples alike. However, as exciting as being wet and wild can be, water activities can present a series of dangers.

Considering roughly 44 percent of Americans cannot display “water competency” — which includes such standard swimming procedures as treading water and swimming 25 yards — it is always a good idea to double-check your family’s comfort levels in and around water before scheduling in a full weekend of wet attractions.

Though Fallsview Indoor Waterpark employs countless lifeguards to keep you and your family safe, here are a couple of lessons and tools to employ to ensure absolute mental and physical health for the duration of your stay.

Regularly Practice Swimming

A person of any age can demonstrate any level of swimming ability, and anyone can improve that level through practice. By enrolling your children in swimming classes at early ages, and by encouraging visits to community and friends’ pools, you should be able to foster a brood of strong, confident swimmers who will feel right at home in Fallsview.

Additionally, the more time your children spend around pools, the more familiar they will be with proper poolside behavior, which includes:

  • No running around the pool.
  • No pushing or horseplay around the pool.
  • No glass containers in or around the pool.
  • No electronic devices in or around the pool.
  • No diving without permission.
  • No pretending to call for help.
  • Never swim alone.

WPblog4.jpegBring Proper Gear

Even with frequent practice, some swimmers need or prefer the assistance of various pieces of swimming gear. Experts recommend that very young swimmers, like toddlers, or insecure swimmers always wear some kind of floatation device or be accompanied by a stronger swimmer for help. Other pieces of gear, though not necessary for all swimmers, may provide some amount of protection or aid. Here are a few of the most common pieces of swim gear we see around Fallsview:

  • Goggles. Both chlorinated and salinized water can cause eye trouble, which means swimmers who frequently dive or spend time underwater must do so blind — unless they wear swim goggles. Goggles come in a variety of shapes and styles as well as colors to block UV rays, so your family members can choose the pairs that suit them best.
  • Nose plugs. These clips worn around the nose prevent the accidental inhalation of water during water activities. Not only does this decrease risk of sputtering or drowning, but it cuts down on infections caused by contaminated water, too.
  • Earplugs. Swimmers who have a history of ear infections may require plugs to prevent seepage into the delicate ear canal. Frequent flooding of the ear can cause infections which lead to hearing loss, so keeping out moisture is crucial for healthy hearing.
  • Floatation devices. It doesn’t matter if they are in vest, jacket, wing, or belt form, floatation devices are some of the most effective tools for swim safety.

If you are afraid you and your family will feel like fish out of water at Fallsview due to lack of swimming opportunities, don’t despair. There are lifeguards everywhere to help keep an eye on you and your family. Still, it is smart to review rules for water safety with your children and have certain pieces of swim gear available just in case.