Friday, October 30, 2015

FAIR

I know I promised pix of classic cars this week, but the fair happens to be in town. County and regional fairs are always nostalgic for me. I remember the ferris wheel and exciting rides like the Hammer or Tilt-a-Whirl as well as the booths testing throwing skills or shooting skills or whatever. It was at a fair I lost all my ride money in an inexplicable urge to pitch a ring over a dish. That's when I learned I was no gambler!

Anyway, my guy went to the fairgrounds with his group of photographers and ended up with some great shots.

This is the entrance:


This is the midway. A little blurred and he didn't want me to use it but I wanted to show the crowd:


This photo, taken at dusk, is one of the two ferris wheels:



This is the ferris wheel after dark:


This is one of those rides where people sit in swings and then the thing starts going around until everyone is swung out with their feet hanging out in space:


 And this is the second ferris wheel:


Ah, so much fun to recall being a youngster and eating hot dogs, funnel cakes, and cotton candy! Pitching darts at balloons and winning trinkets! Rushing from ride to ride! Getting sick behind the merry-go-round...

Well, maybe not the last.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

STEWBILEE's POOCH PARADE

Today was our annual Brunswick Stewbilee. We have Brunswick stew samplings from all kinds of different vendors. One little man was working feverishly at his table by himself, handing out samples, but there were no signs to indicate who he worked for. When I asked, he said, "Myself!" Turns out he's running for Clerk of Court next year! His stew was pretty good, but I think he neede better advertising around his table if he wants to get any votes.

There are also other activities: booths selling various things from cupcakes to jewelry, music from several bands during the day, a classic car show, children's activities, and -- my favorite! -- the Pooch Parade. I'll go into the cars next week but today we'll focus on the doggies!

Here are a couple. Not sure what they're supposed to be, but one of them looks like he's in his pajamas.


This sweet mastiff wore a wig and tutu. She won a prize for best big dog costume.


And here we have a clown with her yellow jacket. I thought she would have gotten a prize but was evidently beat out by a little dog with a cat on his back! Wish I could have got a picture of that but I never did see it.


And here we have a beekeeper, though you can't see him very well since he's standing behind his two bumblebees. Keeping them from escaping, no doubt.


You can't see the sweet little puppy very well, but the lady in red holding him is a volunteer. He wore a red bandana with ADOPT ME on it as he frolicked around. Several people were petting him so I hope he finds someone to take him home.


And the young people in yellow standing in front of the band, are members of the Boys and Girls Club. They volunteered to be judges for the Pooch Parade and did a fine job. I have no idea how they picked the winners because there were too many delightful costumes for me to show here. But the kids did finally decide, and then huddled around each winner and petted it and cooed over it.


I couldn't believe all the cutie pies and how well-behaved they were! Not a single fight or even a threatening grrr!

Saturday, October 17, 2015

LOVERS OAK

In our mainland town, there is a tree called Lovers Oak. I have no idea why. I'm sure some of the oldtimers could tell me if they would.



According to the plaque, it was alive at the time of the signing of our Constitution in 1787. Other sources put it close to nine hundred years old. I have no idea of the real truth.


This view shows off the trunk.



And here is the entire tree.


Impressive, isn't it?

And wasn't is the operative word.

A too-big truck went by the other day and tore off a branch. You can see the stub in the next photo. The huge limb, about a foot or more in diameter, hung directly above the Lovers Oak sign.


But the tree is still there, minus one of its appendages. I hope the county arborist will put some tar on the broken place to keep insects and disease out.

I think we ought to become a sanctuary for trees. Then when something like this happens, someone would have to pay a hefty fine. Maybe then they'd be more careful.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

MOVIE

As you may know, Ben Affleck chose our little mainland city as setting for scenes in his new movie based on the novel Live by Night by Dennis Lehane.

The whole county's been agog.

This is an old town. Most of the businesses have moved out to newer shopping centers and outer areas, leaving the core to fall into vacancy and disrepair. To their credit, some farsighted mayors and other people have been sprucing it up. If their efforts continue, they should succeed because the area has a lot to offer, including beautiful Victorian homes and nineteenth century buildings.

But the book's setting is Boston during the twenties. We scratched our heads? We're to stand in for Boston? Does Boston have palm trees? Will we have to disguise them as sugar maples?

Our fears were ungrounded. The movie people want us to look like Ybor City, Florida, where part of the story takes place.

Ybor City? Home of cigars and a blend of Latin cultures?  Okay, even if our area was the southernmost outpost for Anglo-Saxon settlement before the Revolution, we'll take our moment of fame however we can get it. Lucky we have lots of empty buildings and space for the filmmakers to work their magic. And a lot of actors who can impersonate Cubans. Just remember when you go to the theater that we're really not Ybor City. We aren't even in Florida!

 Now, some pix of the sets being built to turn us into...wherever.

This is the area of downtown they're working with. The road is blocked off and you can see a few of the old buildings they're putting new fronts on. Yes! They're actually making them look good!



This was once the old Bluebird Cafe.


The beige building is being worked on, getting ready for make-believe shutters and sign.


And this is an entirely new structure. The lot was empty, the business torn down years ago. So they're putting up the kind of building they want. Or at least the semblance of one.


I hope this set-building/touching-up helps people remember what downtown used to be like. If the movie stirs up interest in restoration, it will be well worth the trouble of rerouted traffic and noisy construction!

Hollywood, welcome to Brunswick!

Thursday, October 8, 2015

COMMERCIAL

I realized I'd better get this in before the deal goes off so...

My Kindle ebook, The Warwicks of Slumber Mountain, is on special for 99 cents through October eleventh. It's a romance, kind of a gothic, with magic realism and fantasy elements.



Amazon Buy Link:

http://www.amazon.com/Warwicks-Slumber-Mountain-Cheryl-Dale-ebook/dp/B00NLRXLXW/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1444331823&sr=8-1

Saturday, October 3, 2015

FIRST FRIDAY

Each month, the Downtown Development Authority has an event on the first Friday of each month to encourage people to come to the older section of town. Shops stay open late. Some offer refreshments or other entertainment to people wandering by. Musicians play, restaurants offer samples, and there are crafts or other things for kids.

On last night's First Friday, people were encouraged to wear their Halloween costumes. We were there early and left as the crowds began to gather, but there were still things to see.

The kiddy corner held the play castles. We watched them being blown up.


And here is a cute little ladybug with her mom, ready to start having fun.


This exotic beauty handed out samples of fireball shots (some kind of liquor with coffee) outside The Southern Table and Bar. The woman on the right had just drunk one. The one on the left was about to take one. I haven't tried this restaurant but it's on my to-do list!


Here are people wandering on the sidewalk by one of the squares. The table on the left, if I remember correctly, was giving out literature on a no-kill animal shelter.


Across the street, at another square beside the restaurant Tipsy McSway's, a band played jazz.


This is the front part of that square. I didn't realize it at the time, but the bending woman on the right, was trying to get a response from a man who'd been listening to the music. Evidently, she had noticed him having problems.
.

The response was quick, within a few minutes. Here you can see the yellow emergency vehicle over the bushes.


I don't know the outcome but I hope it was good. Other than that, we enjoyed the outing!