Sunday, October 16, 2016

The West is the Best

This is neither a discussion of the 1967 hit song "The End" by the classic rock group The Doors, nor an observation on claims of cultural superiority.  Instead, it is just an observation that I had a lot of fun attending the final day of this year's Old West Festival in Williamsburg, Ohio.  Willamsburg is a tiny town about 25 miles east of Cincinnati, in the next county east, Clermont.  However, the actual site of the Old West Festival is just east of Williamsburg proper, over the next county line in Brown County.  It is, in essence, in the middle of nowhere. . . aside from being immediately adjacent to Ohio 32, a major highway.

Front Street, the main street of the "town"

What is the Old West Festival?  Well, if you know what a Renaissance Festival is, it is a lot like that, only the setting/theme is the American West of 1878 - and you can skip to the next paragraph.  The Old West Festival has a bunch of people wondering about in Old West costumes, an Old West style main street with shops, so-called saloons offering corny but amusing entertainment ("magic" tricks, comedy, song and dance, etc.), horseback riding shows, gunfights, and miscellaneous booths with games.  And slightly overpriced food and drink, of course.  It runs on weekends, they charge admission, and it can be a diverting way to spend an afternoon or the bulk of the day. . . once a year or so.  A friend wanted to go, so we went, and had some fun.

Wagon ride at the festival
On the way back, we stopped for dinner at a restaurant in Milford called Roney's.  Roney's is in a new location, a new building off of Chamber Drive.  They used to be located on Roney Lane in Mount Carmel, and have been around in one form or another since 1969, owned and operated by the same family.  They used to be a Roy Rogers franchise; in fact, they were the last such franchise in Ohio.  Now they're independent, but serving up almost the same food.  In fact, their new building looks much like their old building did, and their largest sign is simply the old Roy Rogers wagon sign with the Roy plated over and the "g" and "r" from "Rogers" replaced with an "n" and "y".

So why am I writing about it?  Because it was a nice change.  Roy Rogers had a wide menu compared to most fast food places, with variety of sandwiches, roast beef, burgers, fried chicken, etc. plus sides. Roney's is missing some of the sides, but the meat of the menu is very similar.  I had a nice roast beef sandwich with cole slaw, my friend had a ham and Swiss sandwich with fries, and we were in and out quite quick.  There's nothing particularly special about the food, but it is good solid fare for a decent price, and it is neat that it has been in operation for nearly a half century.  They've even kept some of the old Roy Rogers (the cowboy singer/actor) memorabilia and a few other western-themed items, making the stop their a thematic continuation of the day's outing.

If I'm passing through the area I'd definitely consider going back, although there are a number of other dining options in that area I've yet to try, so who knows.

On another topic: Work on the tectonics-based terrain generation continues.  I have a basic smoothing algorithm that has what I consider a positive impact on the terrain quality.  I've learned a few new (to me) words in the process (not four letter ones, either) that I may bring up in a future post.  Also, I think I know where to go from here with an algorithm to generate better land forms, but I think I have other fish to fry first (river generation and proper erosion, plains at the foot of mountains, etc.).  I'll have more updates in the future.

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