The Beauty Around Us

Showcases Portraiture, Scenic & Nature Photography and Feaures a Photo Journal Blog

Posts from the ‘Pennsylvania’ category

Our Hawaiian Vacation: The Day and Night Before our Flight

Thursday, August 30th, was the first day of our 14-day Hawaiian vacation.

We left our home at 9:30 and arrived at the Courtyard Pittsburgh Airport around 12:30 pm. We took advantage of the hotel’s stay, park and fly rate plan. Our hotel stay cost just a little more than it would have cost to park our car for 13 days at Pittsburgh Airport.

Check-in time was 3:00 pm. We knew we were early, but often we can be checked in early. Our room was not ready but would be in about an hour. I asked the hotel clerk for a restaurant suggestion. She gave us three nearby suggestions: Eat ‘n Park, Primanti Brothers and Armstrong’s. We chose Armstrong’s Restaurant. The restaurant, which is generally known for its Italian foods, was located in a small strip mall. In additional to Italian menu items, there were non-Italian dishes available as well. Bob ordered Cajun Chicken with Ziti and Coleslaw. I ordered Chicken Parmesan with Linguine and Applesauce. A large basket of fresh Italian bread accompanied our meals. We had a great dining experience. Our waitress was friendly and continuously checked on us. The food was delicious.  The portions large…good value for price paid. We boxed up enough leftovers for two more meals! We did leave room for cherry cheesecake, which we shared. We had never seen such a large slice of cheesecake. The cheesecake was delicious.

We returned to Courtyard Pittsburgh Airport before 1:30 pm. I had telephoned the hotel, while en route, and changed our room from two queen beds to a king room so that we could have a patio room with a walkout to the courtyard. A king room costs a little more than a room with two queen beds, but our lower price was honored.

Bob packed his Fire TV, so later in the afternoon we watched the newest episode of “Castle Rock” on Hulu.

Dinner was our lunch leftovers. There is no microwave in our room, so we reheated the leftovers using a microwave located in the lobby. We found paper plates and plastic dinnerware in the lobby area. We ate dinner in our room.

When we vacationed in Hawaii in May 2010, we stayed at this hotel as well the day before our flight.  The courtyard has changed since then.

20180830_220509618_iOSThe courtyard in 2018

D5162328 4x6The courtyard in 2010

The buildings are now gray and white. There are less trees and shrubbery in the courtyard, when compared to 2010.

Stay tuned for more posts on our Hawaiian vacation.

 

Kinzua Heritage Arts & Music Festival 2018 – Day 3

_LG27574Cannon Shot

 

This blog post is the third, and final, post about this year’s Kinzua Heritage Festival.  The festival has been held the fourth weekend in August, each year, since 2006.  Click here for details and photographs from Day 1 and here for Day 2 of the festival.  The festival hours on Sunday (8/26/2018) were 10:00 am until 5:00 pm.  Bob dropped me off at the festival grounds around 9:30 am.  He returned around 2:00 pm.  We left for home around 5:20 pm.

As I did the previous two days, my day was spent photographing the festival vendors, artisans, entertainers, and attendees.  Live music was provided by Rik Palieri, Garry Campbell, Barry Lee, Mark Mincarelli, Rik Paleri and his Polish stories and instruments, and Spirit Wing.  Storytelling and hula hoop demonstrations took place at the back stage, as well as a benefit auction at 2:00 pm. Cannon shots and “fire in the hole” reverberations were heard a couple times during the afternoon.  Social dancing by the Eastern Woodland Pathway dancers was at 3:00 pm at the front stage. Audience participation in the dances was good. I enjoy everything about the Kinzua Heritage Festival. Social dancing is my favorite event, though.  I enjoy watching, photographing and, this year for the first time, participating in social dancing.  As always, Spirit Wing ends the show with the song “As Long as the Grass Shall Grow”. Anyone who wants to join in with vocals and/or instruments is encouraged to come up on the stage. As always, it was an enjoyable 3 days at the festival.

You may view photographs and video by clicking here, which will take you to my Flickr photo page.  Please note that you may view the content of this page, as a slideshow if so desired.  Click on the “toggle slideshow” button on the right side, above the photo album header.  Enjoy!

 

Kinzua Heritage Arts & Music Festival 2018 – Day 2

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This blog post is the second of three posts about this year’s Kinzua Heritage Festival.  The festival has been held the fourth weekend in August, each year, since 2006.  Click here for details and photographs from Day 1 of the festival.

The festival hours on Saturday (8/25/2018) were 10:00 am until 7:00 pm. I arrived on the festival grounds around 10:30 am and left shortly before 6:00 pm.

As I did the previous day, my day was spent photographing the festival vendors, artisans, entertainers, and attendees.  Live music was provided by Rick Palieri (with Barry of Spirit Wing and of Old Dawg Bluegrass), Old Dawg Bluegrass, The Blue Mule Band, and Spirit Wing.  Storytelling took place at the back stage, as well as a benefit auction at 2:00 pm.  Social dancing by the Eastern Woodland Pathway dancers was at 3:00 pm at the front stage. Audience participation in the dances was good.  At 4:00 pm Mandy, of Vivacious Hoopster, talked about and demonstrated hula hooping at the back stage.  Attendees had opportunity to do some hula hooping as well.

You may view photographs and video by clicking here, which will take you to my Flickr photo page.  Please note that you may view the content of this page, as a slideshow if so desired.  Click on the “toggle slideshow” button on the right side, above the photo album header.  Enjoy!

Kinzua Heritage Arts & Music Festival 2018 – Day 1

_LG26987Spirit Wing

 

This year marked the 13th year of the Kinzua Heritage Festival. Counting this year I have attended the festival eight of those 13 years. I attended the first festival in August 2007. Since 2011 I have attended the festival each year, except in 2015. In 2007 I attended the festival for only a few hours. Since 2011 I have attended the festival all three days, all day long. Also, I have been the official photographer for this event since 2011. I photograph this event on a volunteer basis and share my photographs in order to promote the festival.

The Kinzua Heritage Festival grounds are located at 4047 Fox Hill Road in Russell. The festival is a family-oriented event featuring living history portrayal, vendors from both in and out of the area, period dress, recreations of crafts and trade of the time period, storytelling, Native American social dances, live music from folk to bluegrass to Native American flute and drum, food and children’s activities.

The festival hours on Friday (8/24/2018) were 10:00 am until 7:00 pm. I arrived at the festival around 10:00 am and departed the grounds at approximately 8:30 pm. I spent the day photographing the festival vendors, artisans, entertainers, and attendees. It felt like “home week”, as the festival organizers, vendors, artisans and entertainers welcomed me warmly.  Many of the vendors, artisans and entertainers were those who have been at the festival year after year, although there were several new faces this year.  The festival grows year after year.

Live music was provided by Barry of Spirit Wing and Rick Palieri, Earth Angel, Spirit Wing, Rick Palieri and his Polish instruments, and Rick Palieri and his original content.  For the first time an open-air concert was held after the festival events of the day concluded.   At 8:00 pm Ron Carrington Sr and the Touch of Gold put on a free concert, open to the public.

You may view photographs and video by clicking here, which will take you to my Flickr photo page.  Please note that you may view the content of this page, as a slideshow if so desired.  Click on the “toggle slideshow” button on the right side, above the photo album header.  Enjoy!

 

Gilbert Reservoir

We visited someplace new to us today.

There are three water supply reservoirs totaling over one billion gallons in upland reserves that serve the Bradford, PA water system:

1 – Gilbert Reservoir – 206 Million Gallons – Constructed 1888
2 – Marilla Reservoir – 120 Million Gallons – Constructed 1898
3 – Heffner Reservoir – 760 Million Gallons – Constructed 1956

Two of the reservoirs, Marilla and Gilbert, are open for free public access. Both the Marilla and Gilbert Reservoirs are located along Pennsylvania Route 346, approximately five miles west of Bradford. Both reservoirs offer awesome scenery and a wide variety of shared recreational opportunities. Visitors are encouraged and welcomed to enjoy miles of hiking trails, in addition to canoeing, kayaking and fishing at these two reservoirs.

We have visited Marilla Reservoir a few times. I have shared several photographs of Marilla Reservoir on Flickr that you may view by clicking here.

Across from Marilla Reservoir is a gravel road that leads to Gilbert Reservoir. Today we followed the gravel road for 4 miles UP, OVER and DOWN a hill.

_LG26287The gravel road dead ends at a parking lot located at Gilbert Reservoir.

The reservoir grounds have been upgraded recently.  A new trail leads to a new fishing pier.

_LG26290Gilbert Reservoir
This trail leads to a fishing pier.

The trail and pier are handicap accessible.

_LG26293Bob walked past the pier into the woods beyond.

Bob asked me to join him in the woods.

Don’t even go there! 🙂

Bob wanted to show me something that he had found in the woods.

_LG26298Bob found these butterflies, which were attracted to pieces of charcoal.

_LG26301Bob takes in the view from the fishing pier.

_LG26300This is another photograph of the reservoir from the fishing pier.

On our way UP, OVER and DOWN the hill from Gilbert Reservoir, as we approached Pennsylvania Route 346, we were treated to a magnificent view of Marilla Reservoir.

_LG26303Marilla Reservoir

The scenery at both Marilla and Gilbert Reservoirs is absolutely beautiful.  I am sure that we will make return trips to both reservoirs many more times.

Willow Dale Cemetery

This past Friday Bob and I found my Aunt Alice and her husband Richard’s final resting place. Alice was my paternal grandmother’s first born child.

Alice was born in Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania on 7 January 1907.  I do not know Alice’s father’s name, only that my paternal grandfather was not her father. I expected to find Alice listed on the 1910 census.  The 1910 census lists Alice’s mother, described as single, living in the same household as her parents.  Alice is not listed in the 1910 census.  Alice first appears in the 1920 census, where her address is listed as North Buffalo Township, Armstrong County, Pennsylvania.  Alice’s mother married my grandfather in December 1911.  In the 1920 census my grandparents have five children, including Alice.  Alice is listed on the census, as having the same last name as her siblings.

According to ancestry information provided by one of my cousins, Alice married Harold Biggs, and a daughter named Clara was born about 1928.  Harold died in February 1929.   The death certificate lists the cause of death as acute fibrillation of the heart.  Harold was only 27 years old, when he died.  I found Clara listed in the 1930 census.  She was living in the same household as her paternal grandparents.  Clara’s age was listed as 2 years old in the census.  I have not found a listing for Alice in the 1930 census.

On 18 April 1931 Alice married Richard H. Evans.  Alice was 24 years old at the time; Richard was 55 years old.  The wedding ceremony took place in Allegany, Cattaraugus County, New York.  Both Alice and Richard were living in Bradford, Pennsylvania at the time of their marriage.  It appears that their residence continued to be Bradford until their deaths.  Richard passed away in April 1961.  He was 85 years old.  Alice passed away 30 years later, in April 1991.  She was 84 years old.  I never met Aunt Alice.

Richard and Alice are buried at Willow Dale Cemetery in Bradford, Pennsylvania behind a pond that Bob and I have visited or passed by several times over the past 19 years that we have been married.  I never knew, until recently, that my aunt was buried at Willow Dale Cemetery.

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Willow Dale Pond is located in front of Willow Dale Cemetery.

 

Aunt Alice and her husband, Richard, are buried in the Veteran’s portion of Willow Dale Cemetery.

_LG25768This is the Veteran’s portion of Willow Dale Cemetery.
Aunt Alice and her husband Richard’s burial plot appears in the foreground of this photograph.

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Veterans Memorial

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Aunt Alice and Richard are buried beside each other.

 

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I wonder why Aunt Alice’s grave marker does not display at a minimum her birth and death dates.

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Richard was a Sergeant in the Spanish American War.

I began building my family tree in late December last year.  Genealogy is a very enjoyable hobby!

Blue Ridge Cemetery

This past Saturday I joined the Taphophile world, according to my sister-in-law.  In other words, I became a cemetery enthusiast.  Bob is my second set of eyes, while looking for burial plots.

Since early January, I have been building my family tree.  I discovered that many of my ancestors are buried in cemeteries that are within a 2-3 hour drive of my home in Warren, PA.  Some of my ancestors are buried even closer than a 2-3 hour drive.  One such cemetery is the Blue Ridge Cemetery in Barnett Township in Forest County, PA.

That cemetery is only a hour’s drive from our home.

We drove on a bumpy, dirt road for a couple miles before reaching the cemetery which is located on Blood Road.

_LG25531Blue Ridge Cemetery
Can you make out the steel pipe in front of the break in burial plots?
My family members’ burial plots are in front of that steel pipe.

We found eleven family members buried at Blue Ridge Cemetery, all from the maternal side of my family tree:

Great-Grandparents Benjamin F. (1859-1936) and Lula M. (1873-1930) Leslie
Great-Uncle Noah Leslie (1888-1964)
Great-Uncle Harry D. Leslie (1899-1979)
Great-Aunt Elizabeth R. (1897-1960) and John E. (1892-1968) Gregg
1st cousin 1x removed Andrew F. Gregg (1919-1920)
1st cousin 1x removed John A. Gregg (1933-1964)
1st cousin 1x removed Larry E. Gregg (1937-1937) (note story below)
1st cousin 1x removed Ruby A. (1918-2002) and Walter W. (1906-1992) McKinney

I plan to visit cemeteries, from time to time, at which my ancestors are buried. I chose to visit Blue Ridge Cemetery first because this is the site of Ruby McKinney’s final resting place.

20180324_161756837_iOS

Ruby A. McKinney’s final resting place

In 1987 Ruby mailed me a blue notebook full of names and birth dates of family members, as well as a couple stories about family members.  That notebook has become invaluable to me, as I build the maternal grandfather’s portion of my  family tree.

One of the stories in the notebook is the heartbreaking story about the birth of Ruby’s brother, Larry E. Gregg.

Before leaving on our drive to Blue Ridge Cemetery, I had not yet completed my great grandparents’ ancestry profiles.  What a surprise I had, when I discovered that Benjamin F. and Lula M. Leslie are buried at Blue Ridge Cemetery!

20180324_162616561_iOSMy Great-Grandparents Final Resting Site

I plan to return to Blue Ridge Cemetery, when the snow is gone.  At which time, I plan to take photographs of each of my family’s burial plots.

 

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