Bryce Canyon City is a very small place. The majority of the town seems to be the large hotel and grocery store and RV park and ATV renter-outer and horse-trail-riding Ruby's. There's not a lot else, and entertainment is similarly limited. And the entertainment there is-- a night of dinner and entertainment at Ebenezer's Barn & Grill-- is highly promoted in town.
So we go.
I think we all knew it was going to be a trainwreck. I mean, just look at their web site to get the vibe.
But I assured all involved: we're doing this for the experience, and one way or another we're going to get one. Even if things are a little odd.
Still, I didn't expect what happened when they asked us as we were about to be seated, "Where are y'all from?"
"Washington State. Near Seattle," Jessie replies to the friendly banter.
The hostess interrupts two men in conversation behind her and informs, "They're from Washington."
We are now being led by a man, who I learn later is one of the stage performers, to the 8-person table we will join. He brings us to one, has a brief exchange with someone at the table, then changes his mind and decides on a table very close to the stage. In the second row of tables.
You say, "What a second, did you consult Trip Advisor before forking over $120 for the promised extravaganza of baked beans and cowboy songs?"
Yes, I did. It was just later than you might have done.
My time came during the meal. Though In my case, the food the the plate was barely touched. Jessie did give me half of her steak. Thank you! I heard Sarah Michael twice say that her steak was good, but I don't know for sure if that wasn't just positive self-talk. The girls were done eating and had left to go play outside. I was tired of looking at my plate and even more tired of small-talking with an over-enthusiastic couple from Southern California and a sweet older couple from South Carolina who smiled real pretty but didn't seem to be following the conversation about Comicon and Electric Daisy Conventions on the Las Vegas Strip.
I excused myself to use the restroom. I cherish these quiet moments for the distraction-free environment for contemplation of Trip Advisor reviews.
I am not surprised by the 5-star happy reviews, there are clearly people for whom this is not just ironic entertainment. Indeed, I believe I heard my South Carolina tablemate appreciating the performance. But I definitely throw in with the lower-star crowd.
But that wasn't enough to garner mention on this blog.
I returned from my think tank and the meal was finally over. Now, the entertainment started! There was a lot of singing and joking around between numbers. We were not loving it, but I wanted I listen to a few songs. Then we'd leave.
I was ready to ignore this, here on the blog, and use the evening as a travel learning experience. Sometimes, just say no. Jessie and I agreed that we would leave after one more song.
Ebenezer's Barn & Grill has a tradition, that while the Bar G. Wranglers sing "The Red River Valley", gentlemen and ladies are encouraged to dance in a specified corner. Why the hell not?! This really turned my frown upside down.
Please enjoy my video remembrance of the evening. Stick with it to see the fiddle player photo bomb his way into my heart.