Photo taken near Monument Valley, Utah

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Estes Park II

At Elk Meadow RV Park, Estes Park, Colorado…

We languished in the coach this morning, sleeping late and doing a little net surfing and phone calling while we enjoyed the mountain scene around us. Finally, we did something out of the ordinary and actually fixed a meal in the coach!  We had some leftover BBQ from that which we carried home from Smokin' Dave's, and we also fixed some of the fresh corn we purchased at the farmers' market in Colorado Springs on Monday. Sandy, a purist, ate her corn on the cob with just butter, salt and pepper.  I added garlic and parmesan cheese to mine; it was larrapin' good.  (Slang alert: "Larrapin'", in deep east Texas parlance, means "very tasty.")

In a brochure we had picked up the day before, I found an advertisement for a variety show called "Rocky Mountain Opry" that was opening tonight for a month-long run here in Estes Park.  I called for reservations, and got them for tonight's opening performance. It was billed as a musical variety show--something we definitely enjoy--but I was prepared for something pretty amateurish, especially since the tickets were only $25. (This seemed cheap because everything else here is so expensive.) More on the show later.

We drove around the area some more before the show, enjoying the scenery immensely, and finally ended up back in town so Sandy could do some shopping. Imagine that! Around dinnertime, we decided to grab a hamburger at Penelope's, a downtown storefront burger joint that had received good reviews and which sported in its window an award for "best burger in Estes Park."

Sadly, Penelope's award was obviously fraudulent. The patty was not cooked enough for my liking, and its gray color revealed that it had been cooked on a griddle that was not hot enough. The bun was a large dome of staleness, pieces of which I had to excise to arrive at a reasonable patty/bun ratio.  They also didn't bother to dress the bun, leaving it up to the customer to finish making the hamburger. It was hopelessly bland, and I finally abandoned the effort to eat it. Upon walking out, I decided it wasn't worth my time to upbraid the youngsters in back who had birthed this abomination; they obviously didn't care, and my complaining would have made no difference. Adding insult to injury, the tab for two burgers, one order of fries and two drinks was $21! Best burger in Estes Park, my foot!  I should put in a Whataburger here; I would be rich!

Because of this horrific experience, I will not give Penelope's enough respect to post any photos of the crime scene. Please don't bother to go here; you'll be sorry.

Now, on to something more pleasant--our experience with the Rocky Mountain Opry! The showroom is in the basement of a complex at the corner of highway 34/36 and Mary's Lake Road.  The facility includes a gas station, a small grocery store, a large gift shop and a restaurant. The showroom appeared to seat about 200, and it was about three-fourths full at showtime.

Friends, this talented troupe of musicians blew us away! We were totally unprepared for their brilliant performances. All of them sang and played multiple instruments as skillfully as any artists we've seen in places like Las Vegas and Branson. There were probably 50 different musical instruments on the stage, and they were all played at least once.

The music review included a wide variety of hits, mostly from the fifties and sixties. Here is a guy doing a terrific Willie Nelson tribute:

The next performer is playing a contra bass saxophone, something I have never seen before, even though I used to play a tenor saxophone myself:

The Opry is doing different shows at each performance, including one with rock and roll, another with Broadway hits and another with classic country selections. I only wish we were going to be here long enough to see them all.  If you get a chance to see this group (they also appear in Arizona), you will be highly entertained.  Check them out here.


  1. I'm sorry that you didn't enjoy Penelope's. I've eaten there a number of times and always enjoyed the burger. Your description doesn't match what I've been served so I'm only assuming that the cook was having an off day. Try it again before judging so harshly, please!

  2. Another great blog post....thanks muches.

  3. Love Estes Park and the surroundings. As a matter of fact the whole state of Colorado. Thanks for taking me along.

  4. That Opry show sounds awesome, glad you enjoyed it.

  5. We also enjoyed Estes Park. Such a beautiful state with lots to see! That sax was huge!


I appreciate comments and read every one of them. If your Blogger settings allow, I will happily respond.