Where in the World Wednesday: Disney Resorts

So you’re heading to Walt Disney World Resort and you need a place to stay. So many options: Deluxe or Value? On property or off? Near the Magic Kingdom or the Animal Park? On the monorail track or is the water taxi more your speed?
So many to choose from, not sure I can get them all in this blog without it being three pages long.
First, do we want to stay on property. In my experience, I say yes. However, off property can be less expensive, you will give up many good reasons why to stay on property.
When you stay on property you get to enjoy all the free transportation options around the parks. You are able to add the dining plan to your vacation, take the worry out of spending while in the resort areas when you pay for your dining plan before you travel. You will also get early admission to one of the parks and to stay late at one of the parks. Enjoy grabbing your fastpasses 30 days before your stay and dining reservation 60 days before your arrival. Take the monorail and tour the other monorail hotels. Jump on the bus and head over to Disney Springs. So many options when you stay on property.
Looking with that, let’s start off with the Value resorts.
Value resorts:
The Art of Animation Resort – Disney’s newest Value resort, built in 2012, it has 1120 family suites (565 sq ft) and 864 regular rooms (277 sq ft) and has the largest swimming pool on Disney property at 12,000 sq ft. and 310,000 gallons of water (that’s a LOT of water). The Resort is themed around Disney Animation, from pencil sketches to the films close ups. The three buildings focus on one of Disney’s films, The Lion King, Cars and Finding Nemo. There is a food court at this resort with foods including Soup and Salad, World of Flavors, Pizza and Hamburgers. Be sure not to miss out on the Landscape of Flavors, you can get made to order fruit smoothies, pomegranate limeade and organic teas, just to name a few! Buses are the only Disney transportation to the parks and Disney Springs. This resort is located in the Wide World of Sports Resort Area.
There are four other Value Resorts; Disney’s All-Star Movies/Music/Sports and Disney’s Pop Century. Disney’s Pop Century is also located in the Wide World of Sports Resort Area and the other three are located in the Animal Kingdom Resort area and all have the transportation option of bus.
Disney’s Port Orleans – Riverside – Built in 1992 as Dixie Landings and changed names in 2001. Divided into two sections; Magnolia Bend designed as two & three story plantation style mansions and Alligator Bayou two rustic, cajun style buildings. There are 2048 rooms (314 sq ft) with a max of four persons. There is a food court here, as well as, a full service restaurant, Boatwrights and the River Roost Lounge for some appetizers and a live comedy routine. Location here is Disney Springs Resort Area and transportation is Water Taxi and bus.
Other moderate resorts:
Disney’s Caribbean Beach Resort – Epcot Resort Area – Transportation – Bus
Disney’s Port Orleans – French Quarter – Disney Springs Resort Area – Transportation Bus & Water Taxi
Disney’s Coronado Springs Resort – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort Area – Transportation – Bus
The Cabins at Disney’s Fort Wilderness – Magic Kingdom Resort area – Transportation – Boat or Bus
Deluxe Resorts:
Disney’s Wilderness Lodge Resort:
My favorite! I just love the woodsie feel.
In the Magic Kingdom Resort Area (where you can see the nightly fireworks from the park and catch the water parade every evening)
Transportation – Water Taxi & Bus
Standard view 160 rooms (340 sq ft)
Woods View 104 rooms (340 sq ft)
Woods/Bunk Bed 52 rooms (340 sq ft)
Courtyard View 225 rooms (340 sq ft)
Courtyard View w/Bunk Bed 81 rooms (340 sq ft)
Club Level –
Standard rooms 44
Deluxe rooms 25
Honeymoon Suites 4
Yosemite Vice Presidential Suite 1
Yellowstone Presidential Suite 1
Guests staying in the Club Level rooms have access to the Old Faithful Club. Open from 7am to 10pm  serving continental breakfast in the morning, light snacks in the afternoons, as well as hot and cold hors d’oeuvres in the evening. Dessert and spirits are also served later in the evening. Two concierge cast members on duty to assist guests with priority seating arrangements, the scheduling of FastPasses, and a many other fun services.
Dining Options:
Artist Point – Upscale setting, with some clothing restrictions
Whispering Canyon Cafe – Craziness and noise abound here! Don’t forget to ask for ketchup
Room Service – available 24 hours
Roaring Fork – Quick service offering breakfast platters, pancakes, salads, sandwiches, flat bread pizzas and much much more!
Territory Lounge
Geyser Point Bar & Grill – out near the water’s edge of the main pool area
Other Deluxe Resorts:
Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge – Disney’s Animal Kingdom Resort Area. Transportation – Bus
Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort – Magic Kingdom Resort Area – Transportation – Bus, Water Taxi, and Monorail
Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa – Magic Kingdom Resort Area – Transportation – Bus, Water Taxi, and Monorail
Disney’s Beach Club Resort – Epcot Resort Area – Transportation – Bus and Water Taxi
Disney’s Contemporary Resort – Magic Kingdom Resort Area – Transportation – Bus, Water Taxi, and Monorail
Disney’s Yacht Club Resort – Epcot Resort Area – Transportation – Bus and Water Taxi
Disney’s BoardWalk Inn – Epcot Resort Area – Transportation – Bus and Water Taxi
***COMING SOON***
Announced at D23 Expo in 2017 a Star Wars themed Resort is in the works! This will be nothing like any other Resort! Stay tuned for more information.
Disney has many other Resort options, but for today, I think we have resort overload!
Disney World Resort Map
I only hope that we don’t lose sight of one thing – that it was all started by a mouse.
Walt Disney
DK
*these photos are not mine, no copy write infringement meant”
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Where in the World Wednesday: Walt Disney World Resort Pt. 1

It’s almost vacation time! Have you planned your annual family vacation? Looking for something for the family or just the two of you? Maybe a solo trip is necessary. One of the most visited places on earth is Walt Disney World Resort.  I myself am a huge Disney fan and love going to WDW. I’ve been with the family and I’ve been by myself. I would love to go with just my hubby!
Let’s see what’s going on now and what happened in the beginning.
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Walt Disney, who was he? 
December 5, 1901, in Hermosa, Illinois, Walter Elias “Walt” was born to Elias and Flora Call Disney. Walt had three brothers and one sister and lived in Marceline, Missouri. He began to draw, paint and sell his pictures to family and friends early in life and he took drawing and photography classes in high school while taking night classes at the Chicago Art Institute. When he was just 16 years old, he dropped out of school to join the Army, but because he was underage, he was rejected. He instead joined the Red Cross and was sent to France for a year as an ambulance driver. 1919, he moved back to the U.S where he joined his brother Roy in Kansas City at the Pesmen – Rubin Art Studio. And in 1923 the brothers and another employee moved to Hollywood where they began the Disney Brothers’ Studio.
Fast forward 40 years and because of the success of Disneyland.  Walt decided he wanted to open a new park, west of the Mississippi river. He flew over a possible site of the future Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida: hoping to avoid a rush of land speculation, Walt Disney World Company used many different dummy corporations to acquire the 30,000 plus acres near the centrally located Bay Lake. Sadly, Walt died in 1966 just five years before his vision was realized, from there Roy took over the construction of the resort’s first phase. Roy passed in December of 1971, just three months after the parks opening.
On October 1, 1971 the Magic Kingdom, along with the Contemporary Resort and the Polynesian Village were opened. Two golf courses were opened near the Magic Kingdom a few weeks before the park and Ft Wilderness opened a month later. Just an FYI, park prices were just $3.50 for adults, $2.50 for children under 18 and a $1 for children under 12.
Let’s take a look at the entire WDW resort.
How many theme parks – there are four theme parks
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Magic Kingdom:
The Magic Kingdom is broken down in seven “lands”: Tomorrowland, Fantasyland (which as recently had a huge makeover) Frontierland, Liberty Square, Adventureland and of course, the iconic Main Street U.S.A.
–My favorite rides there? Pirates of the Caribbean, Big Thunder Mountain and Splash Mountain. Magic Kingdom has also changed many restaurants and I haven’t been privy to enjoy them, but my most favorite dining place here: Main Street Bakery.
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Epcot:
Epcot is broken down into two sections, Future World and World Showcase. I love the World Showcase, you can visit 11 different countries and you can eat different foods and drinks, learn history of the countries and enjoy some great music and productions. Favorite places here: La Cellier Steakhouse (in France) and Test Track.  Most disliked attraction, Mission Space (not good for those with weak tummies, enough said)
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Disney’s Hollywood Studios
First opened in 1989, under the name Disney – MGM Studios Theme Park. This was originally designed as a theme park and an operating production studio, which included  film and television production services, and a functioning backlot. In 2001 the name changed to the current, Disney’s Hollywood Studios. DHS has my most FAVORITE ride of all times here: The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror. Least favorite: none
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Disney’s Animal Kingdom
The newest of the four parks, opening on April 22, 1998 (Earth Day) Disney’s Animal Kingdom park has a zoological theme, is the largest park in the world at 580 acres, and is dedicated entirely around animal conservation and a natural environment. This park is broken down into seven areas: Oasis, Discovery Island, Pandora (opened May of 2017 and themed after the movie Avatar), Africa, Rafiki’s Planet Watch, DinoLand U.S.A and Asia.
Favorite attraction EXPEDITION EVEREST – LEGEND OF THE FORBIDDEN MOUNTAIN, Yeah, it’s just that good!!!! I can’t say I have a least favorite here, but I’m not overly excited about the Kilimanjaro Safaris. ONLY because, it’s usually a two + hour wait and it’s hot. Seeing the animals are amazing though! Favorite food: Tusker House. Least favorite: The Rainforest Cafe (just don’t like the idea of a chain in the parks)
I was going to cover everything, but I realized, as big as the “World” is, it’s going to take more than just one post. So. Next up, Resorts
When you’re curious, you find lots of interesting things to do.
Walt Disney
DK
*these photos are not mine, no copy write infringement meant”

Versatile Blogger Award Nominee

Good afternoon!
Just dropping in to give you a little news. Recently, I was nominated for another blogger award. So exciting to be chosen for such an opportunity. My friend Jessica from What’s Happening With Jessica has nominated me. She has been a great supporter, mentor and friend to me in the blogging world. Thank you Jessica!
7 Facts about me:
1. I am an introvert and empath. Lots of people and crowds frighten me
2. My bucket list is lined with traveling to different countries to take photos of churches, cathedrals, abandoned buildings and everything in the  middle
3. I have been married to my husband for 22 years. We dated for only 3.5 months before we married. Hasn’t always been easy, but it’s been the best thing ever!
4. I am a Ulcerative Colitis fighter and a J Pouch warrior. Things that are good for you to eat, are not good for me and my pouch.
5. I love playing Pokemon Go with my son
6. I love taking pictures of the sunsets and the moon.
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7. My dream house would be a spacious rancher on about an acre of land in the mountains.
That was fun! I love sharing with y’all. What did you think of my fun facts? I’d love to hear it. In the meantime, I’m going to nominate some of my favorite bloggers.

Okay ladies, now it’s your turn!

+ Christina Arrigo ATPCreations

+ Aarti  Handmade Hearts

+ We Do What Works

1. Thank the blogger that nominated you and provide a link to their site.
2. State 7 facts about yourself.
3. Nominate 15 others for the award. (Or as many as you can)

That’s it. Have a little fun and be sure to comment on my post so I know you have accepted.

 

Where in the World Wednesday: New Orleans Mardi Gras

I have to tell you I am a no nonsense kind of gal. Wear makeup only on special occasions, I keep my body covered, don’t like large crowds and haven’t drank alcohol in 23 years. So, when it came to me to write about Mardi Gras, I was a tad taken back with myself. I said, SELF…Are you sure?? Self said yup, go learn something! (a nod to NCIS: New Orleans)
So the task at hand today is to figure out what is Mardi Gras; besides the chest baring, bead slinging, week of drunkenness. Hold on tight, cause we are going to Laissez les bons temps rouler (Let the good times roll)! Which, by the way, there is no reply to that saying!
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Mardi Gras began as a Christian holiday and cultural phenomenon, dating back 1000’s of years to the pagan spring and fertility rites. Often referred to as Carnival and celebrated in many countries all over the world with large Roman Catholic populations, is the day before the beginning of Lent: the season of fasting. Binging on the meat, eggs, milk and cheese which remained in their homes, they were preparing to fast. And if you wanted to know what the French called the Tuesday before Ash Wednesday, well, they called it “Fat Tuesday”! Which is the day the huge parades are held!
Many historians believe the first American Mardi Gras was on March 3, 1699, celebrating the landing of the French explorers Iberville and Bienville in Louisiana. They held a small celebration and dubbed it Pont du Mardi Gras. Since then, the Orleans and French settlements have began to celebrate with road events, masked balls and lavish dinners. Sadly, when the Spanish took control of New Orleans, they abolished these festivities and remained in place until Louisiana became a state in 1812.
In 1827, a group of students donned colorful costumes and danced through the streets New Orleans, imitating the festivities they had seen while visiting Paris. 1837 marked the first Mardi Gras parade, a tradition which continues nowadays. In 1857, a secret society of New Orleans, referred to as the Mistick Krewe of Comus, geared up a torch-lit Mardi Gras procession with marching bands and rolling floats, setting the tone for future celebrations within the city. Many customs which remain today, including throwing beads (see, I told you there would be bead slinging) and other trinkets, carrying masks, adorning floats and eating King Cake.
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Let’s just check out what that King Cake is all about. King cake is eaten January 6th, in honor of Epiphany, or Twelfth Night, which marks the arrival of the three wise men in Bethlehem, delivering gifts to baby Jesus. (The plastic baby hidden inside king cakes today is a nod to this story.) King cake also appears on tables throughout the Carnival season, which runs from Epiphany to Fat Tuesday (the day before Ash Wednesday and the start of Lent), at which point practitioners typically abstain from such indulgences as cake.
Back to the story of Mardi Gras…
Louisiana is the only state Mardi Gras is considered a legal holiday and plays host to one of the biggest public festivities,  drawing 1000’s of tourists and revelers each year. This year Mardi Gras falls on Tuesday, February 13th (stay another night and celebrate Valentines in the Big Easy).
  So, let’s take a look at the main traditions of Mardi Gras:
Tossing of the Beads
Just what are these beads that are flung about? Traditional Mardi Gras beads are purple, green, and gold colors. The purple symbolizes justice; the green represents faith; and the gold signifies power. Just to let you know how many beads are flung…New Orleans gets around 25 MILLION pounds of beads. Given those little beads weigh next to nothing, that’s a LOT of beads! Now, ladies, baring your chest is a “recent” addition to the festivities; not really becoming a thing until the 1970’s, you know, Women’s Lib! It is has been said the parties on the floats throw beads to those how show off their goods. Guys, let’s be clear here, you can bare your chest, however, dropping your drawers for more beads is not a good thing and may land you in a jail cell.
Tradition of Masks
Those Masks! Have you seen them! Oh my goodness! Some of them are insane! This would be one thing I would partake in!  Masks are a huge part of the Mardi Gras culture. During early Mardi Gras celebrations, masks were a way for their wearers to escape their social rankings and demands. Mask wearers would mingle with people of all different classes and could be whomever they wanted to be, at least for a few days.
Note to self: In New Orleans, float riders are required by law to have a mask on. On Fat Tuesday, it is legal for all Mardi Gras attendees to wear masks, however, many store owners post signs requesting those entering to remove their masks first.
The Flambeaux Tradition
Flambeaux, means flame or torch and was the tradition of carrying shredded rope soaked in pitch through the streets at nighttime so revelers could enjoy festivities after dark. Slaves and free African Americans were the original carriers of the torches as they were trying to earn a little money. Revelers tossed coins at the carriers, thanking them  for lighting the way for the floats.
Today’s flame carriers have turned the tradition into a performance, dancing and spinning their kerosene lights, something the original parade planners hadn’t done.
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Rex, The King of Carnival

Every year a king is crowned by the Rex Organization, and is always a prominent person in New Orleans. He is given the symbolic Key to the City by the Mayor. Who is this Rex? Well, Rex, was the first king of the Carnival ascending to the throne in 1872. History has it that the first Rex was actually the Grand Duke Alexis of Russia who, befriended U.S. Army officer George Armstrong Custer during a planned hunting expedition in the Midwest. The Duke’s visit to New Orleans was organized by businessmen hoping to lure tourism and business to their city after the Civil War.

BESTPIX New Orleans Holds Citywide Mardi Gras Celebration
NEW ORLEANS, LA – MARCH 04: Rex, King of Carnival parades down St. Charles Avenue despite the rain Mardi Gras Day on March 4, 2014 in New Orleans, Louisiana. Fat Tuesday, the traditional celebration on the day before Ash Wednesday and the beginning of Lent, is marked in New Orleans with parades and marches through many neighborhoods in the city.(Photo by Sean Gardner/Getty Images) *** BESTPIX *** ORG XMIT: 474210969

Handing Out Zulu Coconuts

The Zulu Social Aid and Pleasure Club is one of the oldest traditionally black krewes (parade hosts) in Mardi Gras history. 1910 is the first reference of these treasures, the Zulu Coconuts or Golden Nuggets, were left in their original hairy state, but years later, Zulu members started painting and decorating them. Getting a Zulu coconut is one of the most sought after traditions during Mardi Gras.

 

Finally…

Krewes (especially in New Orleans) a private social club that sponsors balls, parades, etc., as part of the Mardi Gras festivities.

Just to finish it up, let’s take a look at some more of the costumes

Sorry this one was a bit longer than most, but there was so much information! After learning all I did, I am still not hip on going to Mardi Gras in New Orleans; I do know that Walt Disney World does have a Mardi Gras parade, I may go there instead.

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“It has been said that a Scotchman has not seen the world until he has seen Edinburgh; and I think that I may say that an American has not seen the United States until he has seen Mardi-Gras in New Orleans.”
 Mark Twain
DK
*these photos are not mine, no copy write infringement meant”

Where in the World Wednesday: Woonsocket, RI

I am loving going back in history; learning about the past which leads into the present. Today we will visit Woonsocket, Rhode Island. I admit, I know nothing about Rhode Island, other than it’s tiny. I now know Woonsocket is in the northern part of Rhode Island and just south of the Massachusetts border.
Who were the first residents of Woonsocket?
That would be the Eastland Woodland Indians – mainly Nipmucs, Wampanoaags and Narragansetts. Richard Arnold, Sr., the first European interest in the area,  laid claim on land in the late 1660’s. Richard SR., his sons Richard Jr. and John and his sister, Elizabeth Comstock, were the first family members to settle in the area. His family built a sawmill, which was powered by the Blackstone River just below the Woonsocket Falls now called Market Square. Elizabeth and Richard Jr. settled in the Union Village area where they built a stop for travelers on the way to Boston, becoming a commercial center and the hub of the entire area until the 1820’s. John Sr. settled in the Providence Street area where he became a successful farmer and miller and fortunately, his house still stands on Providence Street.
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By Engraving from The Providence Plantations for 250 Years, Welcome Arnold Greene (1886). – Engraving from The Providence Plantations for 250 Years, Welcome Arnold Greene (1886)., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=40318788
Checking out things to do in Woonsocket, it has a MASSIVE list of historic places which are registered in the National Registry. 1761 Milestone, Frank Wilbur house and St. Andrews Episcopal Chapel to name a few!
This place looks like it could be an all summer historical review!!
Let’s take a look at a few:
Linton Block – at 3-5 Monument Square, this is a 4 story office/house built by Robert Linton 1888 for his drug store. Sadly though, in 1890 it was badly damaged by a fire then destroyed by fire in March 2000. So. that may be off our bucket list.
Woonsocket Civil War Monument – also at Monument Square, this was built in 1868 and was the first Civil War monument built in Rhode Island. The Monument includes a park with a swimming pool you can enjoy!
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St. Ann Arts & Cultural Center – Built 1913-1917
“The St. Ann Arts and Cultural Center  is a non-religiously affiliated, non-profit corporation dedicated to the preservation and restoration of the former St. Ann’s Roman Catholic Church building located at 84 Cumberland Street, in Woonsocket, RI… The Center’s mission is to develop multiple venues of adaptive reuse for this endangered and irreplaceable, artistic and historical asset, thereby ensuring its preservation while creating a wonderful resource for the surrounding communities.”
Join the tours on Sunday’s from 1pm – 4 pm for just $10 (adults) $8 (seniors/students) Free (children 4 and under)
They will also be holding a Masquerade Ball, Mardi Gras festivities and a breakfast with the Saints.
Take a riverboat tour on the Blackstone River Valley! Now, there’s some fun there! For $10 – $12 you can take a tour and hear about the early settlers and workers. Experience nature with the Bald Eagles, hawks, deer and turtles!
Or if you would like a more environmental tour, they have those too! You can learn about the river plants, animals and recovery from pollution! Either one sounds like some fun with photos!
Autumnfest – held every Columbus Day weekend since 1979. Held in the city is a huge fair which includes fireworks, parades and lots more fun and excitement.
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Now, since I have not been to Woonsocket, I have to go off the reviews I see online (since I can’t ask my “challenger”). I usually plan my vacations and road trips around food. I do really!! Let’s see what Woonsocket has to offer.
Patriots Diner – 65 Founders Drive Woonsocket, RI 02895  (401) 765-6900
I am all about diner food. It’s true! So when I found this one, I had to check it out. I am looking at the prices of the food and comparing the prices. Not knowing exactly when these prices were posted, take a look at Woonsocket vs Grand Junction
Hot Wings   W: $6.95 GJ: $7.50
Biscuits & Gravy   W: $9.25 (includes biscuits & gravy & potatoes)  GJ: $7.50 (includes biscuits & gravy & potatoes AND 2 eggs)
B.L.T.   W: $5.50 (served with chips)   GJ: $8.50 (served with fries, chips, slaw, soup or salad)
Soda  W: $1.75   GJ: $2.50
If you like fish & chips, let’s visit Ye Olde English Fish & Chips – Started in 1922 and family run since!
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Ye Olde English Fish & Chips – Since 1922
25 South Main St
Woonsocket, RI
I did ask Amy for some photos of the area, she was so excited to share, I know have a vast selection of Woonsocket photos.

Now, if you are in for some real fun, take a short drive of about 45 minutes outside of Woonsocket to 230 2nd St, Fall River, MA 02721. There you will find the Lizzie Borden Bed & Breakfast Museum. 

$20.00 for adults
$18.00 for Senior Citizens (age 60 and above) and college students with ID
$15.00 for all children ages 7 – 15 (Children age 6 and under are FREE!)

Not quite sure about this one, but of course, if I did make it to RI, I would have to add then quickly cross this off of my ghost tours bucket list and Amy would have to come along!!!

Thank you for getting to know Woonsocket, RI with me, learning about the past and hoping to build a better future.

Hopefully I did Woonsocket justice Amy Breen!
My vision for a better Rhode Island starts with a simple idea – we are all in this together. Gina Raimondo
DK

Monday: This year’s excursions

I am so excited about the upcoming year and You Said There Would be Pie’s journeys this year.
January brings a rare astronomical event. January has two full moons, not too rare, but that’s called a blue moon. You know, Once in a Blue Moon? Well, it happens this month. BUT!! I admit I am so very excited about the second blue moon:
The Blue Blood Supermoon Eclipse! 
This is a total lunar eclipse, starting in EARLY  morning of January 31, 2018, it will also be BOTH a super & a blue moon. Man, I hope those skies are clear and my camera and I get along; for those of us West of Denver the eclipse will start at 3:51 a.m. MST, with the umbra reaching the moon’s edge at 4:48 a.m. Sometimes I’m happy I am a night owl!
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Here’s what’s on the planner for the rest of the year:
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Oh so many places to visit!
Join us this year!
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”
― Marcel Proust
DK

Where in the World Wednesday: The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree

The other day I was watching a Christmas movie on Hallmark and the subject of the Rockefeller Tree came up. It was explained that during the depression the construction workers for the Rockefeller Center decorated a small tree with decorations made from their families. So, of course, wanting to learn more about history, I started looking it up.
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And so the story begins.
The date: 1933
The building: 30 Rockefeller Center
On the land that John D. Rockefeller Jr leased from the Columbia University, construction of the Rockefeller Center began. The original building to be built on that land was an opera house, however, the cost of the opera house would need some help from donations from the University and Mr Rockefeller Jr; despite the support of Mr Rockefeller the construction of the opera house was canceled in December of 1929. This began the negotiations with RCA, NBC and RKO to build a mass media complex.
The date: 1933
The celebration: The Tree
Beginning in 1933 the unofficial tradition of decorating the tree starts during the construction of the Center and right in the middle of the Depression. Workers started by decorating a 20′ Balsam Fir with paper garlands, strings of cranberries and tin cans on Christmas Eve. Just two years late the tiny tree was replaced with the lighting of a 50′ tree becoming the “Holiday Beacon for New Yorker’s & Visitors Alike” and in 1936 the now famous skating rink was added.
WWII brought in the use of more patriotic decorations of red, white, blue and stars and in 1943 instead of one large tree, it was replaced with three smaller trees, donning one color of the flag on each tree. Sadly, in 1944 & 1945 due to black out restrictions the tree was unable to be lit and stayed dark for those two years. Never fear! After the war ended, the tree received a make over and was highlighted with ultraviolet light projectors making it look as if the trees globes were glowing in the dark.
The 1950’s brought larger trees and workers using scaffolding to decorate and taking nine days and 20 workers to complete the decorating process. That’s a LOT of lights! Finally, in 1951 NBC televised the tree lighting and has remained a Christmas tradition since. The 1960’s brought the beautiful Herald Angels (designed by Valerie Clarebouts) to the Channel Gardens near Fifth Ave.
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1999 brought the tallest tree, a 100′ Spruce; whereas in 2006 the second tallest, a mere 94′, the heaviest (weighing in at 30,000 pounds (just where did they find a scale that went that high?))  and widest at 56′ wide. That’s a LOT of tree!!
You know that Star which sits on top of the tree? Well, that’s a Swarovski Star designed by German artist Michael Hammers. The star weights 550 lbs, is adorned with 25,000 crystals, 1,000,000 facets, is 9.5 ft wide and since the tree has gone green since 2007, the star uses 1,200 fewer kilowatts per day which is enough to power a 2,000 sq ft house for a month! (HONEY! Don’t look at the lighting bill) 
While this tree may have started to lift the construction workers spirits it is now seen as “from the beginning … a gathering place and reflection of what was happening in the world around it” and “world-wide symbol of Christmas.”
If you are ever in NYC during Christmas time, remember to take a photo of a historical icon and spend a few hours at the skating rink!

 

Never worry about the size of your Christmas tree. In the eyes of children, they are all 30 feet tall. 

Larry Wilde

**these photos are not all mine, no copy write infringement meant**

DK