Monday, April 9, 2012

Erie, Pennsylvania - Gold Crown Billiards

Erie sits on the very northwestern corner of Pennsylvania, sandwiched between the states of Ohio and New York. This is where I went to college, many years back, at Penn State University, the Behrend College. I still have many friends there and it was nice to visit them and also to see my old biology and jazz professors who somehow had not forgotten me. Many thanks to Dr. V for the free lunch with the chamber orchestra!
I spent 4 days in the area, also stopping by Meadville a little further south to meet up with a fellow jazz musician with whom I had worked in the past... now, Joe has a huge studio full of instruments and recording equipment, we had a blast there and at the Italian Civic Club to which he belongs.

Joe (R) and his jazz trio

One of my favorite beers - did not expect to find it in a Wegmann's
I found some time to get out to Gold Crown Billiards, Erie's top poolroom. I had been there about 12 years ago, before the pool bug had sunken its proboscis deep into my brain.
Gold Crown Billiards is a very nice room, opened in 1978. It has two bars attached, Andy's and the Bullfrog Bar (I had some great food at Andy's).
Unfortunately, they did not let me take pictures of the inside of the pool room - but the website has a good picture tour where you can see the different tables and layout.
There was a lot of nine-ball and eight-ball going on, as well as some 3-cushion, although the table did not have a heated slate, there were pretty good billiards players there.
I met a few good people there, Ben sticks out as a great storyteller who took some money from me playing 9-ball, and Brett who was happy to have someone around that shot one-pocket. And also took my money.

Getting around this part of the world without a car can be a frustrating experience. I had to get out of Crown Billiards on time to meet a friend a few miles up the road - there was a bus, but I had to wait in the cold rain and wind for 30min before it finally came.

From Erie, the next stop was New York City. I had booked an overnight Greyhound bus leaving at 12:40 am, going through Buffalo and Syracuse... Funny story about that in the next post! Stay tuned!