Saturday, November 29, 2014

Christmas in Florida

Christmas time is here, by golly,
Disapproval would be folly,
Deck the halls with hunks of holly,
Fill the cup and don't say "when."

Kill the turkeys, ducks and chickens,
Mix the punch, drag out the Dickens,
Even though the prospect sickens,
Brother, here we go again.
-Tom Lehrer A Christmas Carol

Port St Lucie Florida(Flickr User Kim Seng/CC)
Port St. Lucie, Florida was our stop on Interstate 95 as we headed North in our last post from the Interstate. As we enter the Christmas season, lets see what we can about how the city celebrates the holiday.

Port St. Lucie is was developed in the late 20th century, but was hit very hard by the 2008 housing crisis. There are many vacant properties.. Being very residential community all of that vacancy can't be great for community building. The city may be rebounding as this video shows. I hope so.



Searching the Internet led me to very few images or videos or holiday events to share. I hope that the holidays are more fun there than the Internet might cause me to believe. Perhaps the most interesting find when searching YouTube for Christmas in St Lucie Florida was this video which is only marginally Christmas related, but is a neat view of the city.



I did find a few examples of Port St. Lucie related holiday cheer.The city does have an annual tree lighting ceremony...



Then city hall gets enthused and you get ....this...



Finally, we do have at least one citizen of Port St Lucie who turns his house into a freakin' holiday wonderland for Christmas. I salute the homeowners and hope they have a very Merry Christmas!



Playlist Additions

Florida is associated with Jimmy Buffett just like Colorado is associated with John Denver, or California with the Beach Boys, or New York with the Ramones, you get the picture. Jimmy Buffett also made a Christmas album and that is our playlist addition for this week as we look into Christmas In Florida.
(Wikipedia)

Christmas Island is just what you would expect from Jimmy Buffett in a Christmas album. His Caribbean beach infused Southern folk rock sound pervades the album with a little more of the playful swing style of his later years and a ballad or two thrown in for good measure.. It is a must-have for any ParrotHeads music collection.

On the album, Jimmy stays away from the most traditional of Christmas music with only Jingle Bells and Up On the Housetop making appearances. Instead he offers his sound to modern Christmas classics like Chuck Berry's Run Rudolph Run and John Lennon's Happy Xmas (War Is Over). In addition to the rock classics, he throws in a few older swing era "island" Christmas songs like the title track and Mele Kalikimaka. Always with his trademark sound.

The original songs on the album are what really stand out and make this a Jimmy Buffett album. A Sailors Christmas will pull at the heart strings of anyone who has ever had to spend a Christmas alone and far from home. Ho Ho Ho and A Bottle Of Rum deserves to be a modern classic. It is a lot more fun than Grandma Got Run Over By A Reindeer, if you ask me. Merry Christmas Alabama wraps up the album and is like the classic Christmas letter, where he reprises his career and thanks his fans for making it happen.

A bonus track of Buffett reading the classic A Visit from St. Nicholas is a fun addition for his loyal fan base.

Visit our Amazon Gift Shop for download links and other goodies HERE

Album: Christmas Island Jimmy Buffett,
  • Christmas Island
  • Jingle Bells
  • A Sailor's Christmas
  • Happy Xmas (War Is Over)
  • Up on the House Top
  • Mele Kalikimaka
  • Run Rudolph Run
  • Ho Ho Ho & a Bottle of Rum
  • I'll Be Home for Christmas
  • Merry Christmas, Alabama (Never Far from Home)
  • A Visit from St. Nicholas (hidden track)



Signing Off And Coming Attractions

Full disclosure: I have never traveled Interstate 95 and have also never been to Florida. If you are from Port St. Lucie and you think I got it all wrong, I would love to hear from you in the comments. Tell me how it really is in your fair city. For everyone else, here is some free advice. Try to relax and ENJOY the holiday season. That is what it is all about. What do you want for Christmas? Tell me about in the comments. Myself, I keep hoping for Peace On Earth and Goodwill to Man. I hope you can give me my gift and be excellent to each other.

Mileage Stats

Route 66: 0 Miles/1 State/700 Tracks/173 Videos/32 Posts

Highway 101: 22 Miles/2 Countries/1 State/518 Tracks/247 Videos/25 Posts

Interstate 95: 123 Miles/1 State/68 Tracks/109 Videos/13 Posts

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Thanks!





To read more Old Highway Notes, choose an off ramp and click on the highway sign:
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Visit our Gift Shop-It has new items every week!

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    Saturday, November 22, 2014

    Four Old Town Homes/Old Town San Diego Pt.3

    Happy Thanksgiving! 

    This Thanksgiving season I am thankful that places like Old Town San Diego exist to preserve our roots and connect us with those who built this world we now enjoy. Another thing I am thankful for is music. It is my first and truest love. I am thankful for my family, my friends, and you my readers. Now back to our story...

    (Flickr User Margaret Hill/CC)
    After the excitement of exploring the Whaley House and the festivities of Dia de Los Muertas, its time to spend a little more time exploring Old Town San Diego.  Lets take a look around at some of the houses.

    Casa De Carillo

    On the edge of Old Town is the Presidio Hills Golf Course. Perhaps sadly, this the site of the earliest adobe home built in California. I say sadly because now it serves as the Pro Shop for the Presidio Hills Golf Course and likely does not get the respect it deserves for its place in history. The home, the Casa De Carillo was once a part of a much larger hacienda, the Ruiz Adobe. In its time Ruiz Adobe had large large lush gardens that featured pear, pomegranate and olive trees. Today that is all gone except for the Casa De Carillo.

    Casa De Carillo (Google View)


    Casa de Machado y Silva

    Another Old Town house from the early days is the Casa de Machado y Silva. The home was built in the early 1840's as a wedding gift from a father, José Manuel Machado to his daughter Maria Antonia, and her husband, José Antonio Nicasio Silvas. It was a fairly small home on the edge of the plaza.

    In the early 1850's the family opened the building up to the public as the Commercial Restaurant, one of the earliest restaurants in the city. The building stayed in the families hand for the next 100 years as it was home, in addition to the restaurant, to a church and a saloon, souvenir gift shop and an art studio. In 1968 the Sate of California purchased the home and added it to its collection of sites in Old Town San Diego State Park. It houses a small non-staffed historical museum,.
    Casa de Machado y Silva (Flickr User Ken Lund/CC)


    Casa de Machado y Stewart 

    José Manuel Machado built another Old Town house. It was a small adobe house he built in the 1830's. In 1945 when his youngest daughter Rosie married in 1845.Jack Stewart, a native of Maine. Machado gave the house effectively moving them in with his family. 

    The house was occupied by members of the Stewart family until 1966 when it was sold to the state of California. It has some of the nicer gardens in Old Town.


    Casa de Machado y Stewart (Wikimedia Commons/CC)

    Casa de Pedrorena

    Another small house, now museum is the Casa de Pedrorena, built in 1869 in the usual Southern California adobe style it Incorporated a more Yankee-style front porch that in its way symbolizes the merging of two cultures that made up Old Town San Diego, It changed hands numerous times over the year before the state of California purchased the property and restored it in 1996.


    Casa de Pedrorena (Wikiemedia Coons/CC)
    Playlist Additions

    To Download songs and albums from Amazon CLICK HERE

    Home is the theme of this weeks playlist, since it is four homes we have looked at today. It is also the theme in celebration of Thanksgiving, because that is one of the most home and family oriented holidays. I also included a few versions of My Adobe Hacienda, while I couldn't find either version on YouTube, I found a few substitutes for you to enjoy in the video mix.

    • Home Singing In the Bathtub R. Crumb And The Cheap Suit Serenaders 4:11
    • My Adobe Hacienda Happy Trails: The Roy Rogers Collection 1937-1990 Roy Rogers & Dale Evans 2:12
    • This Old House Van Lear Rose  Loretta Lynn 1:56
    • Silent House Taking The Long Way Dixie Chicks 5:23
    • Home Up From Below Edward Sharpe & The Magnetic Zeros 5:06
    • Home The OKeh, Columbia & RCA Victor Recordings Louis Armstrong 3:06
    • Adobe Hacienda 1996-Country Music Hall Of Fame Patsy Montana  1:58
    • Home En Concert [Live] Jack Johnson 3:18
    • Home Honeydew Shawn Mullins 3:07
    • Home Sheryl Crow Sheryl Crow 4:50

    Signing Off and Coming Attractions

    As always, thanks for reading my blog. I hope you found something of value in it. Do you have an old house? What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? Tell us about it in the comments. Here's what is coming up on Old Highway Notes...

    Next Week: Interstate 95 in Florida finds us coming up on another Spring Training ballpark in our series.
    Two Weeks: Chicago, Illinois was the start of Route 66, It was also the start of a famous holiday celebrity. Read my post to find out who.
    Three Weeks: We return to Old Town San Diego on old Highway 101 for Christmas festivities, we will also see how the rest of San Diego, California does Christmas.


    Mileage Stats

    Route 66: 0 Miles/1 State/700 Tracks/173 Videos/32 Posts

    Highway 101: 22 Miles/2 Countries/1 State/518 Tracks/247 Videos/25 Posts

    Interstate 95: 92 Miles/1 State/49 Tracks/87 Videos/10 Posts

    To get more Old Highway Notes by email, enter your email address:

    Delivered by FeedBurner

    If you like what you have read here I'd like to ask you a favor. If you purchase any item on Amazon after you link to them in the little Amazon search window below, I will get a little something from them. It doesn't cost you any extra and I cannot see what you have purchased. With your help, I can keep the show on the road for you.

    Thanks!





    To read more Old Highway Notes, choose an off ramp and click on the highway sign:
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    http://oldhighwaynotes.blogspot.com/search/label/Interstate%2095


    Vista Points-Be social, Get more info, View our YouTube playlist




    Visit our Gift Shop-It has new items every week!

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      Saturday, November 15, 2014

      The Great Chicago Fire (Infographic)

      This week we have a guest post and infographic from Tate Handy of Digital Third Coast. He shares with us a piece he originally did for Chicago Line Cruises. It is the story of a pivotal moment in Chicago history, the Great Chicago Fire.


      The Great Chicago Fire of 1871 devastated the city, killing 300 people, leaving 100,000 homeless, and causing an estimated $200 million in damages; however, without it, we might not have the distinguished architectural structures that our city is known for today.

      Chicago in 1871 was a busy metropolis just starting to become one of the country’s leaders in population and industry, thanks to its trade-accessible location and available jobs in new industries and technologies. However, it still maintained a fairly small area, stretching from the south end of today’s Loop to just north of Lincoln Park, and from Lake Michigan to Halsted in the west.

      The case of how the Great Chicago Fire was started has never been completely solved, but we do have these facts: it began on October 8th, 1871, in the midst of an abnormally dry fall, and it started on the southwest side of the city near the property of Patrick and Catherine O’Leary. Although the most well-known theory blames Mrs. O’Leary’s cow for kicking a lit lantern over in the barn, scholars have disproved that theory in favor of others, including a comet, a drunk neighbor, and a family friend.

      While there’s never been a clear culprit, it’s easy to understand how the fire spread so quickly, thanks to the unfortunate combination of dry weather, a surplus of fuel, and Chicago’s famous wind pushing the fire further. In just a few hours the fire had reached Chicago’s central business district, and it raged from 21nd street in the south to Belden in the north until the early hours of October 10th.

      The fire was finally quelled thanks to rain, the natural firebreak of Lake Michigan, and large empty areas on the north side that couldn’t fuel the fire. The catastrophic effects of the fire could be seen most in the downtown and northern parts of the city, as well as in the events the happened after the fire, when looters and anarchy took over the city, causing martial law to be declared for several weeks.

      Despite the devastation the fire caused, Chicago was able to rebuild itself to again become one of the leading cities in the nation. The reconstruction caused an economic growth spurt that also helped increase the population, so much so that by 1893, Chicago was able to host the World’s Columbian Exposition.

      Today, you can still see lingering effects of the Great Chicago Fire any time you walk downtown amidst the buildings that architects conceived of during reconstruction. These beautiful landmarks may not have been possible without the fire, and they’ll continue to remind Chicagoans of the tragedy for years to come.

      Tate Handy
      Outreach Manager
      Digital Third Coast
      Stereoscope Pictures of the Aftereffects 
      (Photos Courtesy Of Boston Public Library/CC)



      Playlist Additions

      To download theses songs and albums from Amazon, CLICK HERE.

      • Big City Lost Dreams The Electric Prunes 2:46
      • Mrs. O'Leary's Cow Smile Brian Wilson 2:28
      • Fire Soca Dance Party Arrow 5:26
      • Fire Island Roots Vol. 2 Harold Kama, Jr. 3:54
      • Fire Bruce Springsteen: UNCUT CD 1 Link Wray 7:21
      • Fire We Got The Funk Ohio Players 3:13
      • Fireman George Strait 2:37
      • The World (Is Going Up In Flames) Daptone Gold Charles Bradley & Menahan Street Band 3:22
      • Fire Here It Is, The Music CDK Vol 1 The Jimi Hendrix Experience 3:18
      • Fire Stone Free: A Tribute To Jimi Hendrix Nigel Kennedy 4:41





      Signing Off and Coming Attractions

      Thanks again to Tate Handy for providing us with this weeks post. I am changing how I link to the songs I am featuring on this blog. I will always try to give you an iTunes link. Each post has it own Amazon page that features as many as possible download links. When the music comes from any other digital source, my pledge to you is try to find you a source for the music. Support the artists, and thanks to all of you for reading this far.

      Next Week: Old Town San Diego is full of historical buildings. We will look at some them, before we return to our drive North up the old Highway 101.
      Two Weeks: Our Trip up Interstate 95 through Florida has led us to the next ballpark in our series, West Palm Beach to Jacksonville: Spring Training
      Three Weeks: The Christmas season will be underway by then. I have a Christmas story you may not  know came from Chicago,


      Mileage Stats

      Route 66: 0 Miles/1 State/700 Tracks/173 Videos/32 Posts

      Highway 101: 22 Miles/2 Countries/1 State/518 Tracks/216 Videos/24 Posts

      Interstate 95: 92 Miles/1 State/49 Tracks/87 Videos/10 Posts

      To get more Old Highway Notes by email, enter your email address:

      Delivered by FeedBurner

      If you like what you have read here I'd like to ask you a favor. If you purchase any item on Amazon after you link to them in the little Amazon search window below, I will get a little something from them. It doesn't cost you any extra and I cannot see what you have purchased. With your help, I can keep the show on the road for you.

      Thanks!




      To read more Old Highway Notes, choose an off ramp and click on the highway sign:
       photo 750px-US_101mid_zps4ac85a99.png
      http://oldhighwaynotes.blogspot.com/search/label/Interstate%2095


      Vista Points-Be social, Get more info, View our YouTube playlist




      Visit our Gift Shop-It has new items every week!

       photo gift_shop_107794_tnbmidsize_zps6001c771.jpg