Category Archives: Parks

New Orleans – Audubon Park via the St. Charles Streetcar

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True confessions, this isn’t the streetcar I rode out to Audubon park on.

I’m here in New Orleans at a convention but Monday morning is mainly convention business meetings so I got up and had me a parfait from Starbucks cuz I’m trying to be healthy at least for a few hours and then I walked up Poydras Street from the hotel to St. Charles and caught the streetcar from there to Audubon Park.

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I have been to New Orleans several times now but have never set foot on a street car because I was unsure how one paid and where they went and so on and kind of worried about the safety of it all especially since former New Orleans Saint football player Will Smith was murdered in the Garden District just a day or so ago and Audubon Park is in the Garden District.

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My first New Orleans geocache in several years. Boy did I take heat on facebook for this. Everybody is going “Aren’t you supposed to be working?” Hey, you take care of you, and I’ll take care of me! Deal.!?

I checked the world wide interwebs and it was kind of strange. People said that despite the New Orleans being the murder capital of the USA, they didn’t feel nervous about putting their garbage out late at night. Whoa, it had never occurred to me to worry about taking the garbage out anywhere I have lived. Should I startt?

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Well, I was very brave. I headed out on the streetcar without a weapon, not even a knife or even pepper spray.

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Well guess what, Audubon Park is pretty mellow, people walking their dogs, coeds from Loyola and Tulane jogging (how come lots more young women run than men???) old folks walking their dogs. It was a very chill scene (did I say that right? I’m an old guy and I know that I risk making a fool of myself when I pretend that I’m hip.) (Although at this point, I’m beyond caring what people think.)¬†

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Anyways I didn’t go to the Zoo. I walked the two miles around the golf course and it was nice. Huge old oak trees.

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Lots of them, and I took lots of pics of them. The trees are alive!!

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This looks like a former street to me. Trees and lights on both sides. What’s up.

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They have paved trails with politically correct divisions between bikers and runners and dirt trails also.

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And some dinosaur looking birds which I think are cormorants but I’ve come to find out that there are a gazillion different types of cormorants as well.

So I walked a little over two miles, took a trip out and a trip back on the Streetcar and started the convention in a very chill mood which I have maintained through the whole day.

And so I was able to visit the L.A. Turbines Voodoo Chapel and get rid of some bad ju ju and reinfore good ju ju. I love a vendor owned by a Belgian, don’t you? Especially one who is generous with Belgian Beer.

Woodward Park Sculpture and Lomography with the Diana Mini Camera

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Saturday I had a little time to myself while Logan was at his Improv Comedy class so I went to Woodward Park for a little geocaching and photography. My camera was the Lomography Diana Mini. It is a 35 mm film camera that has two modes. One of the modes is split frame where you can put two photographs on the same frame. Above are two sculptures side by side at the park.

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The park has a network of trails that run through the azalea beds. I took pics of the trails ahead and behind me.

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This is also a split frame mode photograph showing the mysterious funky little art deco memorial to Shakespeare. It was designed by Adah Robinson back in the 1930’s. She was an architect who is credit by some with the design of the art deco landmark, Boston Avenue Church.

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The Diana Mini also has a full frame mode that is not quite full frame. It make square photographs. Did I say that the processing the camera’s film drives my Walgreens film guys either crazy or they love it? This sculpture is by Rosalind Cook of Carl Linnaeus at the entrance to the Linnaeus Teaching Gardens.

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This is another sculpture by Rosalind Cook called Poems and Promises. She donated it to the city in 2010. It sits in the Anne Hathaway Herb Garden. I just love this work.

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This is a closeup.

So do you still use film cameras?

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Our World – Tulsa’s Owen Park

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Tulsa’s Owen Park, Tulsa’s oldest public park, is a jewel just to the northwest of downtown.  As peaceful as it is now, it began with a accidental nitroglycerine explosion in 1904 in a nitroglycerine storage shed. Nitroglycerine was used for oil field purposes. The explosion’s crater became what is now Own Creek Pond pictured above. I love that story, another account said that the pond came about when the city dammed a ravine in the park. That definitely lacks in drama and thus is probably not true, at least in my thinking.

The property has been a park since 1909. It sold by Chauncy Owen to the city of Tulsa. Apparently it was the major park in Tulsa for years.

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 I love old obscure memorials. I loved the brass work on the one above. It is the Indian Memorial. Just several hundred feeet east is the junction of the Creek, Osage, and Cherokee tribal nations. Let  me tell you something, there is not much of anything more complicated than the history of the Indian Tribes in Oklahoma.

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There is another monument nearby that commemorates a barbecue held on the property in 1921. It was for families who had been in the area for 30 years or more. Not exactly the welcome wagon is it?

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I noticed that Chancey Owens attended, and several branches of the Perryman family who played a huge role in early day Tulsa. I find it amazing that somebody considered a barbecue so important that they built a monument to it. Have you ever been to a event that good? Me neither.

So, is that it for Owen Park? A remnant of early day history, well I think things are happening.

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A brand spanking new play park with splash pad. Splash pads are all the rage now. We just need some kids. They’ll show when school’s out.

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When the weather is hot there is nothing like these dumping buckets. They’ll cool you off in no time.

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Also, an old building on site is being converted to the Discovery Lab of the Tulsa Children’s Museum. Check out the link, it sounds fun. It opens later this month.

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Also, the neighborhood seems to be coming back. This house above is rght across the street. I just love those first floor doors and windows and the staircase to the left.

So, I think things are looking up for Owen Park.

Our World Tuesday

Our World – The Blue Whale of Route 66

The New Year is almost here. Have a happy and safe New Year’s Eve!

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Just before Christmas SuperPizzaBoy took a one day road trip. As previously reported we went to see the World’s Tallest Totem Pole. On the way back we stopped at the Blue Whale on Route 66 in the city of Catoosa.

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The Blue Whale was built by Hugh S. Davis, a former Tulsa Zoo employee, starting in late 1960’s and finished in 1972 as a gift to his wife.

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(SuperPizzaBoy Photo)

A welder friend of his welded the pipe framework and Mr. Davis applied the concrete one five gallon bucket at a time.

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He built slides off the whale into the pond and a diving platform off the tail. He opened up the whale and pond up to the public for swimming, picnicking, and fishing. Mr. Davis is gone now and the property is owned by his children.

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(SuperPizzaBoy Photo) – Notice the potbellied, bald headed, old man that looks like he is getting swallowed by the whale? That is SPB’s father.

It is now maintained by the Catoosa Arts and Tourism Society. It is free of charge and they allow catch and release fishing but they don’t really want you swimming there.

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Mr. Davis also built other attractions on the property that are in disrepair and off limits but the remains can be seen from the parking lot.

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This is the Ark that he built, he also had an alligator ranch and a praire dog village. Stuff like this intrigues me.

So if you are ever in the Tulsa area check out the Blue Whale in nearby Catoosa, right on Route 66.

Swimming Hole

Our World

Weekend Reflections – Tulsa River Parks Edition

The Tulsa River Parks Authority has “Tulsa Townies” bicycle stations at two places on the River Parks.

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You pick out your bicycle and then use your credit card to unlock it from the unattended solar powered  station.

The bikes are free if you return them in 24 hours. If you don’t you just got yourself a $100 bicycle.

I’ve never used them but they get sold out on nice weekends. I think that it is a great idea.

Weekend Reflections

Our World – D Day Outing at Oxley Nature Center

Sunday afternoon in Tulsa was glorious, warm, sunny, dry.  A great day for getting some vitamin D. Getting outside if you know what I mean. SuperPizzaBoy and I loaded up his three wheel Triton and off we went to Mary K. Oxley Nature Center on the north side of Tulsa.

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The center has some old highways long blocked off from traffic that are perfect for SPB’s three wheel Triton.  He doesn’t like walking like his Dad does so it is a good compromise.

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He can ride for miles.

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We saw brilliant Fall foliage.

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And some shimmering lakes.

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Oxley has lots and lots of side trails. In wetter years the walkways come in pretty handy.

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We found a couple of geocaches. I’ve found almost all of them at Oxley.

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We both got a few hours of exercise and probably overloaded on Vitamin D.

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There was a lot to be had. And the Cowboys didn’t play until Sunday night anyway.

Our World Tuesday