P&G Riverfest 2013

P&G Riverfest is Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky's end of summer festival that concludes with one of the largest fireworks displays in the Midwest - the Cincinnati Bell/WEBN Fireworks. Nearly a half-million people attend on both sides of the Ohio river, and it is ultimately one last big hurrah before the end of summer. So, I was pretty psyched when I won a contest to get free VIP tickets!

I was sent four wristbands, so I had invited my mom and brother to accompany us...but then Francisco came down with a cold last week, and I didn't want to end up infecting them if they stayed here.  I thought I was going to catch his cold, but so far, still nothing more than some slight throat irritation.

Riverfest started around noon, but it was a hot day, in the 90s, so we didn't head over there until 5:00 or so. For lunch, we headed over to the Wurst Bar in the Square. I have been wanting to try this place for a while - they're another 'gourmet hot dog' place that offers not one, but two vegetarian sausages.  Francisco had the Yukon Cornelius, which is an Apple Sausage filled with Yukon gold potatoes and sage, topped with spicy sweet mustard - he added shredded cheddar cheese. I had a Tofu Youface, a tofu sausage filled with basil and sundried tomato, topped with port wine reduced portabella mushrooms and shallots.  You can also build your own dog, Klaussen's Choice.  You get your choice of bun (4 Grain, Brioche, or Italian), and all dogs come with sea salt fries.  We also got a side of Mac-N-Cheese; true to its menu description, this is ooey-gooey goodness served in a skillet.  I enjoyed everything I ate, and I would love to return again. 

We headed downtown after some errands. We knew that all street parking was closed off south of Seventh Street and that they were shutting down the bridges an hour or so before the fireworks. This meant that we had to be sure to park on the Cincinnati side and stay on this side. Normally, we probably would have walked across the Purple People Bridge to check out the festivities in Kentucky...but then we risked getting stuck in the wrong state if our car was on the other side!  We ended up parking about 10 blocks away. Just maybe a little further than was wise, LOL. We checked Google maps later, and it was about a mile and a half walk each way. Ah, well - exercise is good! And we wanted to avoid the crowds, so that definitely worked in our favor. 
Of course food was an immediate priority for me - we grabbed a frozen lemonade and a deep-friend Peanut Butter & Jelly. This was my first deep-fried PB&J ever, and I highly recommend! Hard to make it out under the pile of powdered sugar, but it was indulgent goodness. 

We noticed there were quite a few zombies walking around, so we ended up watching the zombie awards for a while where they called up the best-dressed to win prizes. 

After checking out the rest of the event, we headed over to the VIP section to get our seats.
We were right on the edge of the Ohio River, and the firework barges lined up directly in front of us. We had a clear line of vision over to the Kentucky side, which looked just as crowded as Cincy. 

Purple People Bridge displaying event sponsors

Panorama - show about to begin.

The fireworks show itself was pretty amazing.  

Here are some of my favorite shots:

Towards the end, they practically set the bridge on fire - now I completely understand why they were shut down. ;-)
My dilemma of the weekend was 'how do you do Labor Day nails?' Ha, it's not really a holiday that lends itself well to 'themed' nails. I did a dark base with some glitter 'explosions' to represent fireworks. Eh, good enough. 


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