For those of you who have followed this blog for a while, you know that every year while I'm living in Niagara I love to take part in a charity event held in Niagara Falls.
This "Sleep Cheap" event is a fundraiser held just for people who live locally (you have to prove your Niagara address to take part) and the funds all go to local charities. Basically, the event allows you as a local to stay at some of the local hotels in Niagara Falls for a discounted rate for a few days (some hotels only allow you to book one night at this rate) and the money from your stay will go to whatever local charities are supported that year.
There is also a pass you can buy that allows you to do a few of the attractions at a discounted rate as well. It's a great opportunity to do some local tourist things that most of us locals avoid all year because of how busy and expensive some of it can be. This year I didn't do all the activities (because I have done this a few years now) but here is some of what I did while taking part in this event.
The first hotel I stayed at in Niagara Falls this year I have to tell you, the view from this room was one I would happily have paid a lot more to have. Being able to look out your window and see the falls all night and watch the sunrise over the falls in the morning, there just are not enough words to say how grateful I am to have had that opportunity.
When this is your view and the money you spent to have this view is going to local charities, everyone wins! I've taken part in this event for a few years now (before I lived in Edmonton and after returning to Ontario from Edmonton) and this is the first time I have stayed at this hotel (not every hotel participates every year and some hotels are hard to get into because they are so popular) so this is my first time having a room with a view of the falls. So worth it!!!!!
I also got to take the Incline Railway for the first time in the falls to get from my hotel down to one of the activities that were included in the pass called Journey Behind The Falls (I do Journey Behind The Falls every year that I can because you get amazing shots of the falls for social media and one hell of a view to enjoy personally).
The Incline Railway is not only fun if you ride it but it also gives you a great view and a cool story to tell people because it is such a unique thing. I actually took both pictures and video because it was so fun. This is something I would do again because it saves you a lot of walking.
The Journey Behind The Falls attraction is always fun for me but this year I did have some issues with trying to take photos without sunglasses on because the sun was so bright. This is not a big deal unless of course you are looking right into the sun and trying to take a selfie (First World problems I know), however, having a good sunny day makes the pictures turn out way better so it was a great day for this activity and I got lucky and was able to see a couple of rainbows as well.
If you have never been to the falls I do suggest doing Journey Behind The Falls if you can when you do go. You will not only see a stunning view but will have a much better understanding of just how powerful the falls are after standing below and behind them as the water flows.
The following pictures are all from this year's Journey Behind The Falls.
Of course, I also took some local, festive photo opportunities because life is short and you have to enjoy it while you can. So because of the festival of lights is going on the city of Niagara Falls has set up great places around the city for you to take cute photos for social media.
This year there are snowpeople (sized for children not adults, but I did it anyways ha ha ha), giant chairs, a love lock bridge and of course dozens of other places to take great shots. When the festival of lights is going on you can always find great places to take shots day or night.
I also went to the Floral Showcase (not included in the pass) and did some other tourist attraction like glow in the dark mini putt (who doesn't love mini putt) because I think it is important that if you take part in an event like this that you should take the opportunity to experience as much of it as you can.
You may not live locally here in Niagara but do you know if your area does any special charity events throughout the year? Have you looked into it or even inquired with your city to find out if this is something you could start in your local area?
I highly suggest that you look into your local area to see what is available for you because the experience of helping a local charity while also getting to have a great personal experience yourself is the best thing anyone could ask for.
Below you will find some additional photos from this year's event. If you have never been to Niagara Falls before and don't live locally, I suggest you look into coming during the slower seasons because although it may be colder, you have far fewer people to contend with while walking around.
Sleep Cheap is how I welcome the holiday season starting here so Happy Holidays to all of you reading this and I hope you get out to enjoy your local activities over the holiday season.