I've been visiting the Union for as long as I can remember - for Babcock ice cream cones, my senior prom, more weddings that I can count, live music on the Terrace, and cold beer and warm popcorn (or is it warm beer and cold popcorn? You never really know what you're going to get) in the Rathskellar - and made it a point to visit the Union as many times as possible during my three-and-a-half weeks in Madison this summer.
|The Union waterfront, docks, beach, and terrace.|
|The outdoor stage, and a band mid-show.|
|The cozy and rustic Rathskellar.|
|Enjoying the iconic Union chairs.|
We (the kids and I, my parents, my Camping Family aunts and uncles, my sister and her family when they were in town, and Tom when he was in town) were actually at the Union every Friday evening for happy hour - otherwise known as the 19th hole - after the Camping Family men finished the 18 holes of disc golf they play every Friday afternoon.
Both kids thought the Union was the bee's knees. Every Friday afternoon, as Will left for the disc golf game (in which he was beyond thrilled to be included), he'd yell, "see you at the 19th hole!" out the window of the car. And every Friday afternoon, after Hallie awoke from her nap, the first thing out of her mouth was, "are we going to the 19th hole at the Yumons?"
Yes, she pronounced it "yumons". It didn't matter how many times we corrected her and made her practice - she always said "yumons". So even though 19-month-old Lily could pronounce the word correctly, we started calling our beloved Friday night hangout "the Yumons". I wonder if it'll stick...
I must admit, however, that one of the reasons the kids loved the Yumons so much is that after a certain length of time spent socializing with the adults, my mom and I let them play games on our phones. Lemonade, popcorn, and Angry Birds Space = Will's perfect afternoon.
|Huddled around the iPhone.|
|I guess Will did periodically break from the games, |
but the breaks were usually only long enough for a
quick straw sword fight with Uncle John.
Hallie's interests are a bit broader than Will's, so for her, the perfect afternoon = lemonade, popcorn, feeding the birds, and dancing with Grandpa.
|Discussing the birds with Aunt Marsha.|
|Hallie was seriously like the bird whisperer.|
|Showing off her moves.|
I know that Will and Hallie made great memories of all kinds on this trip. I also know that someday they too will be able to say - just as I can - that they've been having fun at the Yumons for as long as they can remember.
|Will and Grandma|
"The Yumons"...I think it stuck!
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