Matchbook Traveler

Orlando March 2015


For our spring vacation, we drove to Orlando with a number of stops along the way.  First day, we stopped at Coaches in Essington, Pennsylvania, for a very good lunch.  One sightseeing stop was Jericho covered bridge near Joppatowne, Maryland.  No matches for us in the Baltimore area.  The next night we stayed at the Highlander Motel in Arlington, Virginia, with dinner at the Crystal City Sports Pub.  We stopped at the Marine Memorial (the famous Iwo Jima statue) and the Netherlands Carillon with a last stop for the day at the Air Force 9/11 Memorial.  All were quite impressive.  Next day, after a stop for lunch at Theismann’s in Arlington, we visited the George Washington Masonic Memorial.  This is an impressive structure and grounds which we had seen at a distance before and were glad we made the stop.  

The trip south on I-95 was a struggle.  We finally were able to exit and take a side road to Richmond.  The Commonwealth Park Suites Hotel is conveniently located and we enjoyed dinner at Star-lite.  With heavy rain in the morning, we had to skip sightseeing and spent the day driving in the rain until we got near Wilmington, North Carolina.  We found no matches in North Carolina whether heading south or north.  Wilmington has some historic homes and, of course, the USS North Carolina.  Traveling to South Carolina, we stopped for lunch at Dick’s Last Resort in North Myrtle Beach on our way to Charleston.  This city lives up to its reputation with historic homes, buildings, churches, and cathedrals.  Of the many places here that used to be listed on matchbooktraveler as having matches , only Tommy Condon’s still has them.  It is now St. Patrick’s Day, next stop Orlando, and we thought we would stop in Savannah for lunch.  It turns out that Savannah has one of the larger celebrations in the country (even a school holiday), so we didn’t get to spend any time there.  We did make it to Orlando, Florida, for three very enjoyable days and nights.  It also happened to be the Southern Swapfest hosted by the Southeastern Matchcover Club.  At auction, we managed to pick up some matchbooks and matchboxes that were a little out of the ordinary.

Our first lunch found us at High Tide Harry’s (very good food and prices).  For dinner, we went a little more upscale to Todd English’s Blue Zoo (box), located at the Walt Disney World Dolphin Resort in Lake Buena Vista.  Without a reservation, we had to sit at the counter overlooking the kitchen.  Not only great food but, as it turned out, a great show.  After dinner, we enjoyed the fireworks display at Disney World.  Heading back to our hotel, we were looking for Dick’s Last Resort for a drink but the address in Where magazine was incorrect so we made a quick stop at Charlie’s (box). The next day we went to downtown Orlando for some sightseeing (two cathedrals come to mind), a cigar at Corona Cigar Company (two different boxes), and an excellent lunch at Kres Chop House.  Dinner found us at Linda’s La Cantina for a great steak.   These were our last matches for the trip.  We had to head home the next day.  No matches at places that once had them, whether in Savannah, Georgia, or Ocean City, Maryland., or places in between. 

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