MoaBlog

MOABLOG

このコーナーでは、ユタ州モアブに在住する DHC U.S. Office スタッフが日替わりで、現地の日常を写真入りのブログで公開していきます。毎週何かが起こる! MOABLOGでアメリカから最新の日常をお届けします!


Travel

Feb 21, 2011

Chuck Wagon


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A chuck wagon is a mobile kitchen for cowboys to use while camped out on the range. One story about them asserts that the first cowboy to come up with the idea of outfitting a wagon with a cookstove and a food preparation area was named Charles. His nickname of Chuck stuck to his creation. They are rarely used by working cowboys today, but they are a popular tourist attraction in the West. Tourists can participate in a chuck wagon dinner at many resorts and parks. Usually the diners ride on horseback or in a wagon to a remote location for the dinner. After dinner, cowboy entertainers sing and tell stories around a campfire.


Posted by Writer at 10:50 AM
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Jan 31, 2011

Penny Press


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Sam collects pressed pennies. When he is on a trip he looks for one of these machines. You put a penny and two quarters into a coin mechanism. The quarters pay for the process. The penny rolls into the press. As you turn the crank the gears engage and roll the penny between two dies. The dies emboss a design on the penny as it is flattened. The design is usually emblematic of the location.


Posted by Writer at 10:24 AM
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Aug 23, 2010

Shakespearean Greenshow


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Sam took a day off to go to the Utah Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City, Utah. He enjoyed the Greenshow, which is free entertainment before the plays each night. The crowds are usually large and include children who would not otherwise be able to attend. Students of the Festival dress in colorful period costumes and show their talents at dancing, music and repartee.

Click on photo to see video. Quicktime 6.5 or higher is required


Posted by Writer at 08:23 PM
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Aug 16, 2010

Lincoln Boyhood Home


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Among the many places Jeff's family visited on their vacation recently was the site of Abraham Lincoln's boyhood home in southern Indiana. Much of the heavily wooded area looks the same as it did 200 years ago. Five-year-old Indiana (second photo) enjoyed wearing a stovepipe hat similar to the one worn by President Lincoln.


Posted by Writer at 04:35 PM
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Aug 09, 2010

Radio Telescope


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On a recent visit to New Mexico, Sam saw this radio telescope dish. It is part of the Very Long Baseline Array (VLBA). The VLBA is a system of ten radio telescope dishes spread across the U.S. from the Virgin Islands to Hawaii. All of the dishes are controlled from a center in New Mexico. The VLBA is the world’s largest astronomical instrument. Astronomers use the VLBA to study some of the most mysterious aspects of the universe, including distant quasars and supernovae.


Posted by Writer at 08:46 AM
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Jul 26, 2010

100th Anniversary Scout Jamboree


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This year marks the 100th anniversary of the founding of the Boy Scouts of America. As part of the year-long celebration, approximately 50,000 Scouts and leaders are gathering for the National Scout Jamboree in Fort A.P. Hill, Virginia. The 10-day event begins today. Among those attending are a handful of people from Moab, who are participating separately. They include lifelong Scouter "Doc," 83, (top two photos), who is attending his 12th consecutive national jamboree dating back to 1964, and Jeff, 45, (bottom photo), who is attending his first national jamboree. Other participants from Moab include another leader (David), and two young Scouts (Andrew and Alec).


Posted by Writer at 01:42 PM
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Jul 19, 2010

River's Alaska Trip


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Yesterday, 11-year-old River finished a month-long excursion to Alaska and back. She rode with her aunt, cousins, and grandparents to visit another aunt's family in Anchorage. The group saw many natural wonders in Canada and Alaska during their trip, and logged over 5,000 miles of driving. The top photo shows River and her cousin Alix paddling a canoe. The middle three photos are of the group fishing for halibut from a boat in the ocean near Seward, Alaska. River shipped home her fish (about 18 lbs. worth). The bottom photo shows all the travelers, plus the family that lives in Anchorage, and another couple of family members who flew up to join in the fun.


Posted by Writer at 03:31 AM
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Jun 14, 2010

Timpanogos Cave Hike


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During last weekend's family reunion, 31 people from Penny's side of the family visited Timpanogos Cave National Monument in Utah's American Fork Canyon. They hiked 1.5 miles to the cave entrance, then went on a hour-long tour of the cave (actually three separate caves linked by tunnels), guided by forest rangers. Everyone then hiked back down the mountain trail before heading back to their campsite for lunch.


Posted by Writer at 12:45 PM
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Mar 18, 2010

Hovenweep National Monument


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The Southwestern United States includes many Native American ruins such as these at Hovenweep National Monument, on the border of Colorado and Utah. This structure is called Horseshoe Ruin; however, from the ground it is hard to see that it is in the shape of a horseshoe. It was probably used as a fort for defense against marauding tribes.


Posted by Writer at 08:56 AM
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Mar 11, 2010

Historic 25th Street


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While visiting Ogden recently, Jeff went for a walk along the city's historic 25th Street, which is lined with old brick buildings. Some nearby areas of downtown Ogden are currently undergoing redevelopment, with newly constructed apartments, stores, and office buildings.


Posted by Writer at 07:31 PM
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Mar 10, 2010

Burned-Out Railroad Car


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This heavily rusted and burned-out railroad car is one of many unusable train cars located at Ogden's historic Union Station.


Posted by Writer at 03:46 PM
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Mar 09, 2010

Train Yard


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Outside the historic Union Pacific Railroad train station in Ogden, Jeff recently took pictures of the various old railroad cars and engines.


Posted by Writer at 03:42 PM
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Nov 19, 2009

Jeopardy! Auditions


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A couple of weeks ago, Jeff's family made a weekend trip to Culver City, California so that 10-year-old River could audition for the popular national TV game show Jeopardy! (The show features a "Kids Week" once per year with contestants 10-12 years old.) River did well on her tryout, and will know in a couple of months if she will get to appear on the show next spring.


Posted by Writer at 08:56 PM
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Nov 13, 2009

More Santa Monica Pier Photos


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A few more shots from the Santa Monica Pier, which attracts some 3 million visitors per year. Top photo: Indiana and Geneva on the south edge of the pier. Middle photo: Brooklyn looking at the brightly lit neon signs of the rides. Bottom: a view of the western edge of the pier, as seen from the ferris wheel. People can rent fishing tackle and catch various fish from the pier, including perch, mackerel, white sea bass, sharks, and sting rays. Fishermen who don't want to keep their fish they catch can donate them to an aquarium on the east end of the pier.


Posted by Writer at 10:04 PM
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Nov 12, 2009

Pacific Wheel


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The 85-foot high Pacific Wheel is the dominant attraction on the Santa Monica pier. The ride, billed as the world's only solar-powered ferris wheel, includes some 160,000 energy-efficient LED lights that shine in a variety of patterns and color combinations. These two pictures were taken by Jeff while he was riding the ferris wheel last weekend.


Posted by Writer at 10:00 PM
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Nov 11, 2009

Santa Monica Pier


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The Santa Monica Pier, built a century ago in 1909, is a popular attraction. The pier features several amusement park rides, including a roller coaster, a ferris wheel, and several smaller rides. Jeff and Penny and their daughters had fun visiting the pier during their recent weekend trip to California. Check back tomorrow for a couple more pictures taken from the ferris wheel.


Posted by Writer at 09:49 PM
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Nov 10, 2009

More Beach Photos


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More photos taken during Jeff's family's visit to Santa Monica beach on Saturday afternoon. A sign on the beach says it is the original home of "Muscle Beach," which helped popularize bodybuilding, weightlifting, gymnastics, and personal fitness beginning around 1959.


Posted by Writer at 09:19 AM
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Nov 09, 2009

Santa Monica Beach


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Saturday afternoon, Jeff and Penny and their daughters enjoyed visit to the beach near Santa Monica, Calif. The water was cold, but the kids had a fun time wading in the surf and playing in the sand. Check back tomorrow for more photos of the beach.


Posted by Writer at 09:16 AM
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Sep 18, 2009

Capitol Reef National Park


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Sam took this photo of the Capitol Dome, after which Capitol Reef National Park is named. The dome is made of Navajo sandstone, a common sedimentary rock of the southwest.


Posted by Writer at 03:23 PM
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Sep 16, 2009

Capitol Reef Apples


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On a recent trip to Capitol Reef National Park, Sam enjoyed tasting the apples from trees planted by pioneers of the area. He said the old fashioned fruit is as good as the kind he used to pick and eat as a boy when he lived on his grandfather's farm. Visitors are free to choose one to eat, and they can also pick a sack full or bushel full, pay for them and take them home.


Posted by Writer at 03:14 PM
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Aug 27, 2009

Main Street Panguitch


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Two photos of Main Street, Panguitch, Utah, taken roughly 50 years apart. The top photo shows the street being torn up around 1958 or 1959, probably to install a drainage system. The bottom photo was taken by Jeff's dad in nearly the same spot in August 2009.


Posted by Writer at 09:41 PM
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Jul 30, 2009

No Trespassing


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Jeff took a picture of this "No Trespassing" sign south of Panguitch last weekend, and used Photoshop to apply a sepia tone and other effects to the image.


Posted by Writer at 09:26 AM
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Jun 17, 2009

Bear Lake


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Bear Lake, a large freshwater lake located in northern Utah and Southern Idaho, is sometimes called the "Caribbean of the Rockies" because of its intense turquoise blue water. The water was rather cold for swimming last week, but Jeff and Penny's daughters enjoyed playing on the beach, finding shells, and making sandcastles. Bear Lake has a surface area of more than 100 square miles.


Posted by Writer at 11:59 AM
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Jun 16, 2009

Paris, Idaho


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Jeff and Penny and their daughters also visited the small town of Paris, Idaho during their vacation to Bear Lake, Utah last week. The town, founded in 1863 by Mormon settlers, has a current population of about 600 people. Its name was originally spelled "Perris," the name of one of the first settlers, but was changed to match the more well-known spelling of the capital of France. The town's major landmark is the Paris Tabernacle (three middle photos), built in 1889. A small replica of another well-known Paris landmark, the Eiffel Tower, was found at a local antique store (bottom photo).


Posted by Writer at 11:47 AM
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Jun 15, 2009

Minnetonka Cave


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While on vacation last week, Jeff's family visited Minnetonka Cave in southern Idaho. The cave, orginally called Porcupine Cave, was discovered by a grouse hunter in 1907. It is the largest developed limestone cave in Idaho. The middle photo shows the cave guide shining his flashlight on a strip of "cave bacon" -- a ribbon shaped formation named after the food it resembles. The bottom photo shows a formation called "The Three Sisters". The middle formation was damaged by an earthquake several hundred years ago, causing it to develop a second "head".


Posted by Writer at 11:38 AM
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Mar 20, 2009

Horno Ruin


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The rocks in the Southwestern area of the United States come in various shapes. This one is shaped like a cooking appliance used by some Native Americans and is referred to as the Horno Ruin. The word "horno" means oven in Spanish. Notice the buildings inside that were made from stones by the ancient American inhabitants called the Anazasi.


Posted by Writer at 01:15 PM
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Mar 19, 2009

Native American Towers


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The Native Americans built towers at locations where they could see who might be coming to disturb them. Sam is standing by the remains of one of these buildings on the edge of Sand Canyon.


Posted by Writer at 01:11 PM
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Mar 18, 2009

Sand Canyon


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Recently Sam visited Sand Canyon in Canyons of the Ancients National Monument in Colorado. He enjoyed seeing the Native American structures. Here he is standing by one of the better ruins.

The ancient Americans placed their buildings under cave like features called alcoves, so they were protected from the elements.

Here is a double leveled structure with windows.

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Posted by Writer at 01:06 PM
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Mar 17, 2009

The Canyons of the Ancients


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The Canyons of the Ancients National Monument is located in Colorado and covers 164,000 acres of high desert. More than 5,000 archaeological sites have been documented in the monument. Some of the areas are accessible by road and others by hiking. Humans have occupied this area for at least 10,000 years. East of the monument is the more famous Mesa Verde National Park containing majestic ruins. Canyons of the Ancients includes Sand Canyon, Lowry Pueblo, and Painted Hand Pueblo. Visitors interested in seeing the monument should stop at the Anasazi Heritage Center for maps and current conditions of roads and trails.


Posted by Writer at 12:59 PM
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Jan 27, 2009

Salt Lake Visit


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Jeff went by himself to Salt Lake City this past weekend. Salt Lake is about four hours away from Moab by car. Jeff stayed with his in-laws, and also spent time with his own parents, Kay and Ann (pictured above).


Posted by Writer at 11:25 PM
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Jul 23, 2008

Wind Power


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On her way to Yellowstone, Virginia saw the newly completed wind park in Spanish Fork Canyon. This is part of Rocky Mountain Power Company’s Blue Sky Program to generate electricity from renewable sources.

The DHC U.S. Office participates in the Blue Sky program.


Posted by Writer at 02:41 PM
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Jul 22, 2008

Yellowstone Wildlife


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One of the highlights of Virginia’s trip was getting to see wildlife in a natural habitat. She saw many animals including buffalo (bison), elk (wapiti), moose, and black bear.


Posted by Writer at 02:35 PM
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Jul 21, 2008

Yellowstone Vocabulary


While visiting Yellowstone National Park, Virginia noticed these signs explaining some vocabulary associated with the park’s thermal features:

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Roiling and Boiling?
Churning Caldron is scalding hot, but not boiling. Gasses rise through vents opened by earthquakes, then rumble and bubble to the surface, causing the water to roil.

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What is Hydrothermal?
Hydro = Water Thermal = Heat

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Mudpot or Fumarole?
A fumarole or steam vent’s underground system is nearly dry. Heated deep below the surface the water turns to steam, then rises with other gasses.
Mudpots are muddy springs. Microorganisms live in mudpots and convert hydrogen sulfide gas from Yellowstone's magma chamber into sulfuric acid. This acid breaks rock and soil into mud.


Posted by Writer at 02:27 PM
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Jul 18, 2008

Yellowstone National Park


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Virginia visited Yellowstone National Park last week. It is America's first national park established in 1872. The park includes parts of Wyoming, Montana, and Idaho and is home to a variety of wildlife including grizzly bears, wolves, bison, and elk. Yellowstone National Park is best known for its extraordinary geysers and hot springs. Old Faithful is one of the most famous.

Click here to see a video of Old Faithful erupting. (requires QuickTime)



Posted by Writer at 01:46 PM
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Jul 16, 2008

Helsinki, Finland


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Helsinki was the highlight of Mary’s tour. Mary's brother Nathan lives in Helsinki, and he and his girlfriend and another friend gave Mary, her mother and her aunt and uncle a tour of the city. Above is a photo of Mary (center) with her brother Nathan and his girlfriend Minna.


Posted by Writer at 09:12 AM
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Jul 15, 2008

Stockholm, Sweden


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Stockholm, Sweden was the third city that Mary visited on her cruise. She took a tour through different shops in the city. Stockholm was of special interest to Mary’s mother and her aunt because their grandparents on their mother’s side were Swedish immigrants.


Posted by Writer at 09:11 AM
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Jul 14, 2008

Medieval Church in Oslo


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Mary toured a folk museum while in Oslo, Norway. A wooden Viking church from medieval times has been moved to the museum in order for people to view it. There are few wooden churches from medieval times still standing because many of them have burned down over the years.


Posted by Writer at 09:09 AM
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Jul 11, 2008

More St. Petersburg Photos


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Mary’s cruise ship was docked at St. Petersburg for two days. She went on two separate tours of the city. Above are pictures from one of her tours. The bottom picture is of the Neva River. Peter the Great, the Russian Tsar who caused the city to be built, intended for ships to be the main form of transportation for the city, and there is a connecting system of canals throughout the city. However, the car is the main form of transportation; most of the people who travel on the canals are tourists.


Posted by Writer at 09:08 AM
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Jul 09, 2008

Candy at the Festival


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At the Utah Shakespearean Festival there are a lot of traditional style candies and treats from 16th century England. One unusual candy is called horehound. Horehound is a candy with a strong licorice like taste. Licorice is a candy made from a plant root. Horehound is also made from a plant; it comes from a type of mint plant. Horehound is covered with a sugar coating to add a little sweetness. A few years ago when John was at the same festival a man selling the candy explained to John what the horehound candy tasted like. Talking in an Irish accent he explained "It's a mix between licorice and dirt." Although his explanation is funny, it is also ironically true.


Posted by Writer at 07:00 PM
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Jul 07, 2008

Maypole


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John went to the Utah Shakespearean Festival last month. He saw two plays: "Taming of the Shrew" and "Two Gentlemen of Verona." Before the plays, performers put on a greenshow. A greenshow is an outdoor performance. It included various acts that relate to countries in Shakespeare’s plays. At the greenshow the performers did a "dance around the Maypole." A Maypole is a big pole with colored ribbons connected to the top. Each dancer grabs one ribbon and dances around the pole in a pattern. As the dancers dance they make a design on the Maypole by weaving the ribbons in-between each other.

Click here to see a video (requires QuickTime)


Posted by Writer at 06:51 PM
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Jul 03, 2008

St. Petersburg, Russia


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There are many things to see in St. Petersburg. Above are a few of the pictures that Mary took during her tours of the city. The bottom picture is the “Church of the Spilled Blood” (also known as “The Cathedral of the Resurrection of Christ.” The church was built on the site where Alexander II of Russia was fatally wounded by an assassin’s bomb, and was built as a memorial to him.


Posted by Writer at 12:43 PM
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Jul 02, 2008

Tallinn, Estonia


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Mary took the pictures above while in Talllin, Estonia. Estonia was once part of the Soviet Union but is an independent country now. Walls that were built to protect the city during medieval times are still standing.


Posted by Writer at 06:44 AM
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Jul 01, 2008

Norwegian Sculptures


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Mary had the opportunity to stop at a park in Olso and view sculptures created by Gustav Vigeland (1869-1943), a famed Norwegian sculptor. Later in life, Vigeland sought to capture the human experience from life to death through a series of sculptures which are displayed at the park.


Posted by Writer at 07:05 AM
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Jun 30, 2008

Oslo Olympics Site


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Mary went on a tour of Olso, Norway, site of the 1952 Winter Olympics. She took this picture of the ski jump used during the Olympics when her tour bus made a stop.


Posted by Writer at 07:02 AM
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Jun 27, 2008

Copenhagen


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It was raining the day that Mary was in Copenhagen, so the bus did not make as many stops as it typically would have. However, Mary was still able to take a few pictures of the city. At the top is picture of the sculpture of the Little Mermaid, a character in a story from Danish writer Hans Christian Andersen. The statue, created in 1913 by Edward Eriksen, is the same one that Sam saw a replica of in Salt Lake City last year (click here to see the entry about the replica statue)



Posted by Writer at 08:24 PM
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Jun 26, 2008

Oresund Bridge


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Mary took these pictures of the Oresund Bridge while the ship she was on was cruising back to England. The bridge, along with a tunnel and an artificial island, was built to connect Denmark and Sweden. The bridge officially opened in 2000. The bridge is about 10 miles long (16.4 km). It has one of the longest cable-stayed main spans in the world.


Posted by Writer at 08:20 PM
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Jun 25, 2008

Towel Animals


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Mary’s cabin steward often made animal shapes from towels for her and her mother to find. Above are pictures of a rabbit and a monkey made from folded towels.


Posted by Writer at 07:51 PM
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Jun 24, 2008

Baltic Cruise


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Mary recently went on a cruise through the Baltic, along with her mother and her aunt and uncle. The ship she was on embarked from Harwich, England on May 22 and returned to Harwich on June 4 after making stops in Olso, Norway; Copenhagen, Denmark; Stockholm, Sweden; Helsinki, Finland; St Petersburg, Russia; and Tallinn, Estonia. More pictures of her cruise will follow.


Posted by Writer at 07:49 PM
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May 23, 2008

Soccer Stadium


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While in the Salt Lake City area recently, Jeff saw that the new soccer stadium in Sandy is starting to take shape. The arena will be the future home of Utah's professional soccer team, Real Salt Lake. The $115 million publicly funded stadium is expected to be completed within the next few months. It will seat more than 22,000 people. This picture was taken from inside a moving car on the freeway while Penny was driving past the stadium.


Posted by Writer at 10:16 PM
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Mar 25, 2008

Utah State Capitol


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Jeff's family visited the Utah State Capitol building in Salt Lake City last week. The building recently underwent extensive seismic renovations, and workers are still putting the finishing touches inside the structure. Check back tomorrow for more pictures of the Capitol building.


Posted by Writer at 08:30 AM
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Nov 14, 2007

Peace Statue


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This statue in the Peace Garden is symbolic of the hope that we can leave a more peaceful future to our children.


Posted by Writer at 02:00 PM
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Nov 13, 2007

The Little Mermaid


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The section of the Peace Garden representing Denmark includes this reproduction of the famous Little Mermaid statue. The original sits on a rock in Copenhagen harbor. The statue was unveiled on August 23, 1913. It was created by sculptor Edward Eriksen.


Posted by Writer at 01:58 PM
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Nov 13, 2007

Matterhorn


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The Peace Garden has small gardens representing many different countries. The Swiss Garden includes this scale replica of the Matterhorn. It is one of the most famous mountains in Europe. It sits on the border between Switzerland and Italy. The name comes from the German words “Matte”, which means “meadow”, and “Horn”, which means “peak.”


Posted by Writer at 01:41 PM
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Nov 09, 2007

Aztec Stone Calendar


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Another interesting reproduction in the Mexico section of the Peace Garden is this Aztec calendar. The Aztec were a Pre-Columbian people living in the area of present-day Mexico. The calendar is based on a 365 day cycle and a 260 day ritual cycle. Each month had 20 days except for the last month, which had only five days.


Posted by Writer at 01:55 PM
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Nov 08, 2007

Olmec Head


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The Mexico Garden in the Peace Garden includes this replica of an Olmec Head. The Olmec were an ancient people that lived in the south-central region of what is now Mexico from about 1200 BC to about 400 BC. The Olmec are best known today for the colossal stone heads that they carved.


Posted by Writer at 01:53 PM
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Nov 07, 2007

Autumn in the Peace Garden


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Some of the trees in the Peace Garden are starting to show their autumn colors.


Posted by Writer at 01:51 PM
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Nov 06, 2007

More from the Peace Garden


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Awhile ago, we told you about the Peace Garden in Salt Lake City. Sam revisited the place again this past month and took some more photos. This circle of posts has messages of peace in many different languages. Click on the photo to read the message in Japanese.


Posted by Writer at 01:29 PM
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Oct 22, 2007

Deer Hunt


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Around 30 members of Jeff's family, including his parents and all of his siblings plus numerous nieces, nephews, and cousins, gathered at the Panguitch Lake area this past weekend for the annual deer hunt. Even the non-hunters are wearing bright orange clothing, which is required when outdoors during the hunting season. Saturday afternoon was spent eating dutch oven chicken and potatoes at a place called Horse Knoll. Even if nobody gets a deer, everyone still has a good time enjoying being outdoors in this popular family tradition. Click on top image for a larger version of the family picture.


Posted by Writer at 10:33 AM
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Oct 10, 2007

Family Reunion


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Mary recently traveled with her parents to Sparks, Nevada, which is approximately 1,130 kilometers from Moab, to visit her aunt who lives there. Her father’s other two sisters also traveled to Sparks to have a small family reunion. Mary took a picture of her three aunts together and another picture of her father with his sisters. It had been nine years since her father and all of his sisters had been able to meet together. (Seated, left to right are Alice, Ethel, Elenor, and Mary’s father Bill.)


Posted by Writer at 12:12 PM
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Oct 09, 2007

Fall Colors


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Mary took this picture while traveling in the mountains through Spanish Fork Canyon, which is approximately 242 kilometers from Moab. Generally, the best time to see fall colors in the mountains in Utah is in late September and early October. In Moab, the leaves do not change color until mid- to late October.


Posted by Writer at 11:57 AM
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Oct 08, 2007

The Metaphor Tree


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While traveling between Salt Lake and Wendover, Mary snapped this picture of a large sculpture called “The Metaphor Tree,” or “The Tree of Life.” In the 1980s, The Swedish artist Karl Momen worked several years to build this sculpture on the Bonneville Salt Flats. When he was finished, he donated it to the state of Utah. The sculpture stands 87 feet high, providing a color contrast to the flat, white landscape that surrounds it.


Posted by Writer at 11:56 AM
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Oct 05, 2007

Bonneville Salt Flats


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Mary took this picture of the Bonneville Salt Flats while traveling between Salt Lake City and Nevada. The Bonneville Salt Flats, a flat, salt-covered area of land that stretches over about 30,000 acres, are a remnant of Lake Bonneville, a vast lake that covered much of Utah during the last Ice Age.

Each spring, the salt flats are covered by a shallow layer of water, which eventually evaporates during the summer. Speed races are held on the salt flats during the summer, and several land speed records have been set or broken here. Speeds of over 600 miles per hour (965.4 kilometers per hour) have been acheived.


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Oct 04, 2007

Great Salt Lake


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Mary took this picture of the Great Salt Lake while traveling past it during a recent trip to Nevada. The Great Salt Lake is the largest lake in the western part of the United States.


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Sep 24, 2007

Greenshow


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The Utah Shakespearean Festival includes a free nightly greenshow that features music, song, and tales on an outdoor stage. It is called a greenshow because it takes place outdoors on the green (a large public grassy area).


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Sep 18, 2007

Tower Bridge Natural Arch


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One of the unique features of Bryce Canyon National Park is the Tower Bridge natural arch. It is so named because of its resemblance to the Tower Bridge in London, England.


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Sep 17, 2007

Bryce Canyon National Park


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After the Shakespearean Festival, Sam visited nearby Bryce Canyon National Park. Its unique geology consists of a series of horseshoe-shaped amphitheaters eroded from the eastern edge of the Paunsaugunt Plateau in southwestern Utah. Unusual stone spires called "hoodoos" are formed by ice and rainwater wearing away the Claron Formation limestone that makes up the plateau.


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Sep 14, 2007

King Lear


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This year at the Utah Shakespearean Festival, Sam saw three plays: Twelfth Night, Coriolanus, and King Lear. This photo shows a statue of King Lear in the famous storm scene where he says:

Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! rage! blow!
You cataracts and hurricanoes, spout
Till you have drench'd our steeples, drown'd the cocks!
You sulph'rous and thought-executing fires,
Vaunt-couriers to oak-cleaving thunderbolts,
Singe my white head! And thou, all-shaking thunder,
Strike flat the thick rotundity o' th' world,
Crack Nature's moulds, all germains spill at once,
That makes ingrateful man!


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Sep 13, 2007

Sir John Falstaff


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Approximately 150,000 people visit The Utah Shakespearean Festival each year. About 60 percent of the festival’s audience comes from Utah; 24 percent from Nevada; 6 percent from Arizona; 6 percent from California; and 4 percent from other areas throughout the world. This photo shows a statue of the character Sir John Falstaff. Here is one of his famous speeches:

If sack and sugar be a fault,
God help the wicked! if to be old and merry be a
sin, then many an old host that I know is damned: if
to be fat be to be hated, then Pharaoh's lean kine
are to be loved. No, my good lord; banish Peto,
banish Bardolph, banish Poins: but for sweet Jack
Falstaff, kind Jack Falstaff, true Jack Falstaff,
valiant Jack Falstaff, and therefore more valiant,
being, as he is, old Jack Falstaff, banish not him
thy Harry's company, banish not him thy Harry's
company: banish plump Jack, and banish all the world.


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Sep 12, 2007

Romeo and Juliet


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The Utah Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City, Utah is one of the oldest and largest Shakespearean festivals in North America. Its first season was in 1962. On the grounds of the Festival there are several statues of Shakespearean Characters. This photo shows the statue of Juliet from the play Romeo and Juliet. Here are some of Juliet’s most famous lines:

O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo?
Deny thy father and refuse thy name;
Or, if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love,
And I'll no longer be a Capulet.

'Tis but thy name that is my enemy;
Thou art thyself, though not a Montague.
What's Montague? it is nor hand, nor foot,
Nor arm, nor face, nor any other part
Belonging to a man. O, be some other name!
What's in a name? that which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet;
So Romeo would, were he not Romeo call'd,
Retain that dear perfection which he owes
Without that title. Romeo, doff thy name,
And for that name which is no part of thee
Take all myself.


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Sep 06, 2007

Shakespearean Vocabulary


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William Shakespeare’s vocabulary in his works includes over 17,000 words. This is four times the number of words a well-educated English speaker of today uses in conversation. Shakespeare is credited with introducing over 3,000 new words into the language. Here are a few examples: frugal, lonely, fixture, discontent, bedroom, worthless, and zany.

Photo: Shelly Gaza (left) as Cordelia and Dan Kremer as King Lear in the Utah Shakespearean Festival’s 2007 production of King Lear. (Copyright Utah Shakespearean Festival. Photo by Karl Hugh.)


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Sep 05, 2007

Shakespearean Phrases


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Shakespeare’s writings have had such a strong influence on the English language that even today many people will use phrases from Shakespeare in common speech. Sometimes they don’t even realize they are quoting Shakespeare. Here are a few examples: It's Greek to me, salad days, vanished into thin air, budge an inch, green-eyed jealousy, played fast and loose, tongue-tied, a tower of strength, hoodwinked, in a pickle, too much of a good thing, bag and baggage, the long and short of it, and dead as a doornail.

Photo: Leslie Brott (left) as Volumnia, James Newcomb as Caius Martius Coriolanus, and Kate Cook as Virgilia in the Utah Shakespearean Festival’s 2007 production of Coriolanus. (Copyright Utah Shakespearean Festival. Photo by Karl Hugh.)


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Sep 04, 2007

Shakespearean Language


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This photo is of a bust of William Shakespeare at the Utah Shakespearean Festival. Shakespeare, who lived from 1564 to 1616, wrote in an older form of English that used the pronoun thou. Although we don’t commonly use this form today, most Americans are familiar with it and can still understand Shakespeare’s writings. The word thou is the second person singular pronoun, and ye is the plural pronoun, but in modern usage both have been replaced by you. Thou is the nominative form; thee is the oblique/objective form, and thy or thine is the possessive. Verbs that follow thou have -st or –est added to the end of the word. For example the phrase “You gave me a present.” would be "Thou gavest me a present."

Although it is not yet considered standard English, there is a similar shift taking place in the language today. Many people will use the plural pronoun they to describe a single person instead of using the singular pronouns he or she.


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Aug 31, 2007

International Peace Gardens


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Sam recently visited the International Peace Gardens in Salt Lake City. It is a project to promote world peace. The large park contains many gardens representing countries throughout the world. It was originally developed in 1947 and refurbished for the 2002 Winter Olympics. The bottom picture is of the portion of the garden representing Japan.


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Aug 17, 2007

Historic Village


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Jeff and Penny's family recently made another visit to the "This is the Place" historical park in Salt Lake City. Among the activities they did were (from top) playing checkers in an old pioneer home that once belonged to Brigham Young; attending a make-believe 1860s-era school session in a one-room schoolhouse; and washing laundry in a washtub with an old-fashioned scrubbing board.


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Aug 01, 2007

Yellowstone Bus


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Sam is interested in antique vehicles, so it was especially enjoyable for him to ride in one of the newly restored antique Yellowstone buses on a tour of the canyon area.


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Jul 31, 2007

Mount Washburn


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While in Yellowstone, Sam and Virginia climbed the 3,122 meter high Mount Washburn. The view from the top was spectacular.


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Jul 30, 2007

Vacation in Yellowstone


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Sam and Virginia spent their summer vacation in Yellowstone National Park. They saw a variety of wildlife including bear, wolves and bison.


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Jul 03, 2007

This Is The Place


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Jeff's family visited This Is The Place Heritage Park in Salt Lake City today. The site is where Brigham Young and other Mormon pioneers first entered the valley in 1847. Dozens of historic buildings have been either relocated or rebuilt as replicas on the site, which now resembles a pioneer-era town from the late 1800s. They spent the afternoon doing a variety of fun activities, including leatherwork, doing farm chores, and riding horses.


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Jan 16, 2007

Visit to Arches


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The Ito family, who are orginally from Japan but have lived in the southern USA (Georgia) for about a year, visited Moab during their holiday vacation last month. They parked their RV at a local campground and visited Arches National Park the following day, hiking to the world-famous Delicate Arch (top photo). Thanks for sending these photos and letting us know that you enjoyed your stay!


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Jan 09, 2007

Trip Statistics


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By the time they finally returned to Moab on New Year's Eve, Jeff's family had traveled 2,222 miles in 10 days. Their pickup truck used about 135 gallons of gas for an average of 16.4 mpg. The gas cost an average of $2.50 per gallon, which means they spent nearly $350 on fuel during the trip. Although their trip was memorable and fun, they are planning to stay closer to home and relax next Christmas!


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Jan 08, 2007

Wild Animal Park


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On their last day in California, Jeff's family visited the San Diego Wild Animal Park in Escondido. The 1,800-acre preserve is home to hundreds of exotic animals from around the world, including these African lions.


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Jan 05, 2007

Oceanside Beach


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Jeff's family also went to a beach near Oceanside, Calif. on the last day of their trip. The water was cold, but the kids had fun collecting seashells and sand dollars. Brooklyn even found a starfish (bottom photo).


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Jan 04, 2007

Sea World


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Jeff's family visited Sea World in San Diego last Friday. Highlights included a 20-minute show featuring trained dolphins, who repeatedly splashed water on the audience members sitting in the front 15 rows or so (middle photo). They also saw a holiday show featuring the famous Shamu the killer whale, along with numerous other marine animals and fish.


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Jan 03, 2007

Universal Studios


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While in Southern California last week, Jeff's family also visited the Universal Studios theme park near Hollywood. They took a 45-minute tram ride to see various studio sets, props, and special effects, including those pictured here (from top): an instant flash flood that came down a Old Western street; a car racing scene from "The Fast and the Furious: Tokyo Drift"; the mechanical shark from the movie "Jaws"; and the plane crash set from Spielberg's "War of the Worlds".


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Jan 02, 2007

Disneyland


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At Disneyland last week, Jeff's family got to see Mickey Mouse himself (top photo) at his house in Toon Town. They also rode their favorite rides, including Alice's Teacups (middle photo) and Pirates of the Caribbean, which now features new animatronic figures of Capt. Jack Sparrow, the character played by Johnny Depp in the popular films based on the theme park attraction. Other favorite rides enjoyed by the family at Disneyland included Splash Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, and a new Buzz Lightyear ride.


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Dec 28, 2006

Kenilworth Castle


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The day after Mary arrived in the U.K., she toured Kenilworth Castle. The castle was built in 1125 and during its history was inhabited by various kings and noblemen. The castle has stood in ruins for hundreds of years, but it is still an impressive sight.


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Dec 27, 2006

Oxford


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On the day before she left the U.K., Mary toured Oxford, home to one of the most famous and prestigious colleges in the world. She was impressed by the beautiful buildings she saw. She was able to climb up the tower of one of the cathedrals (middle photo) and take pictures of the town and surrounding countryside (bottom).


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Dec 21, 2006

London


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One day during Mary’s trip to England, she took a bus and visited London with her brother. While they were there they saw many famous sites including Buckingham Palace, Westminster Abbey, and the Tower of London. Unfortunately, they did not have enough time to spend very long touring each place. However, they thoroughly enjoyed their visit. Check back next week for a few more photos of Mary's trip!


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Dec 20, 2006

Leeds


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On the second day of her visit, Mary traveled to Leeds, which is in the northern part of England. Leeds became an important manufacturing center during the Industrial Revolution in the late 1700s and early 1800s, and it remains an important industrial center today.


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Dec 19, 2006

Mary's Trip to the United Kingdom


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Mary recently visited the United Kingdom for a week. She stayed with her brother Nathan and his girlfriend Minna, who are living in a town called Northhampton. She took these pictures from the balcony of the apartment where she stayed. During her visit, Mary saw several interesting places. Check back tomorrow for more photos of her trip!


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Oct 23, 2006

Colossal Fire Dragon


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One of the most popular attractions at Lagoon amusement park is the Colossal Fire Dragon, often simply called the Colossus. The 85-foot-high ride is a metal track roller coaster that includes a full vertical loop 65 feet (20 meters) in diameter. The cars reach a top speed of 55 miles per hour (90 kph) during the ride, which lasts 1 minute and 45 seconds. Built in 1983, the Colossus can carry up to 1,600 passengers per hour.


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Oct 19, 2006

More Japan photos


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A couple more pictures from Coral's trip to Japan. The top photo shows family members posing underneath a giant paper lantern, while the bottom photo shows Coral in front of a historic landmark temple in Tokyo.


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Oct 18, 2006

More Japan photos


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More photos from Coral's presentation at the senior center last Friday. Top: parents George and MaryLynn in the mountains outside Tokyo. Middle: Marla and Coral in front of a Kabuki theater. Bottom: Coral watches a street calligrapher at work.


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Oct 17, 2006

Japan Trip


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A few images from Coral's presentation about her recent trip to Japan. Top photo: Penny and Coral's sister Marla, who lives in Tokyo, takes a bite of a rice cake on a skewer. Middle photo: Coral's mom MaryLynn enjoys a bowl of hot ramen at a restaurant. Bottom photo: Marla and daughter Rachel pick out pastries at a bakery. Check back tomorrow for more photos from Coral's trip!


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Sep 28, 2006

Utah Festival Opera


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Sam and Virginia attended the Utah Festival Opera in Logan, Utah, where they saw three productions. On the first night they attended a performance of the popular Mozart opera “The Marriage of Figaro”. Called “Le Nozze di Figaro” in Italian, this piece is a comic opera about a couple preparing for marriage, and how they have to contend with the count’s desire for the young lady. This opera was chosen because 2006 is the year celebrating the anniversary of Mozart’s 250th birthday.

The next day, they saw the popular Meredith Wilson musical comedy “The Music Man”. That night, Giacomo Puccini’s masterpiece “La Boheme” was presented. This sorrowful love story is Sam’s favorite opera. It is based on Murger’s novel “Scenes de la vie Boheme." Originally written in French, the story was adapted into an Italian libretto for this composition.


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Sep 27, 2006

Grand Teton National Park


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Sam and Virginia recently took an auto tour of Grand Teton National Park, which abuts the larger Yellowstone National Park on the south. The Grand Teton peaks were named by French explorers in the 1800s. They are popular destinations for climbers. There are a few popular hikes, including one which begins with a boat trip across Jenny Lake and ends at Hidden Lake.

A glacier is seen in the photo behind Sam. Glaciers are usually located on high slopes and move constantly down the mountain, carrying rocks and debris. They shrink a little each year, but winter snowfall adds a little to their mass.


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Sep 20, 2006

Afton, Wyoming


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During their recent trip to Yellowstone, Sam and Virginia stayed one night in log cabin in Afton, Wyoming. Afton is located in beautiful Star Valley, Idaho, between Jackson Hole and the border of Idaho. The area is prime dairy country, so Sam wanted to try and find some fresh cheese curds but they are no longer available. The dairy farmers in the area are suffering hard times.

Afton is the home town of Rulon Gardner, winner of the gold medal in superheavyweight (130 kg) Greco-Roman wrestling at the Summer Olympics in 2000 in Sydney, Australia. He defeated the world champion from Russia. In 2004, Gardner went back to the Olympics in Greece to defend his title, but came away with a bronze medal instead. On the way out of town, Sam and Virginia drove past Gardner's family's home and dairy farm (bottom photo).


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Sep 13, 2006

Raingear at Yellowstone


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Sam is modeling his raingear, a necessity during a rainy hike to Morning Glory Pool, a vibrant turquoise hot spring located in the geyser basin near Old Faithful in Yellowstone National Park. Summer brings many visitors to the part of the park, but due to the rain, Sam and Virginia enjoyed a moment of solitude here.

Morning Glory Pool is two miles from Old Faithful Geyser and is accessed by way of a road that can also be biked. On this popular route, there are many other hot springs and geysers. Wildlife such as bison, squirrels, coyotes, deer and elk are often seen. Bears, which were common in years past, have now moved into the wilder areas of the park.


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Sep 05, 2006

National Museum of Wildlife Art


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During a recent visit to the National Museum of Wildlife Art in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, Sam and Virginia viewed "Thomas Moran: Painting the Parks," consisting of paintings and drawings that the artist did while accompanying the Hayden Geological Survey to the Yellowstone and Grand Teton areas of Wyoming, Idaho, and Montana in 1871. Moran's depictions familiarized Americans with the treasures of the area and encouraged Congress to create Yellowstone National Park in 1872, America's first national park.

Other exhibits at the museum included a wonderfully lifelike collection of bison paintings, and other pieces showing bighorn sheep, wolves, and bears, along with local pictures from a children's art contest.


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Aug 03, 2006

Hands-on Exhibits


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The Museum of Ancient Life in Lehi has several "hands-on" exhibits, including (from top) an erosion table where kids can submerge toy dinosaurs and trees in wet sand and water; a mock fossil dig where children can brush away the sand from buried dinosaur "skeletons"; and a "create your own dinosaur" exhibit where people can put together various body parts made out of foam and cloth to create colorful creatures.


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Aug 02, 2006

Dinosaur Museum


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On Monday afternoon, Jeff and his 5-year-old daughter London visited the Museum of Ancient Life in Lehi. They saw a wide variety of dinosaur fossils, including those pictured here (from top): dimetrodon, brachiosaurus, a primitive Chinese bird fossil, and triceratops. Check back tomorrow for more museum photos!


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Jul 28, 2006

Big Springs National Water Trail


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While in Idaho, Jeff and Penny's family visited Big Springs, from which flow 120 million gallons of pure water each day. Large rainbow trout (second photo) live near a bridge close to the spring's headwaters, which flow from the ground at a constant temperature of 52 F (11 C). Further downriver, people can put in their canoes and rafts for a gentle three- to four-hour river trip. As part of their reunion activities last Saturday, nearly 40 Heaton family members did just that, ending their excusion where the river meets the highway bridge at Mack's Inn. Further downstream, the Big Springs flow feeds into the Henry's Fork tributary, which then becomes part of the mighty Snake River that flows westward across Idaho and into Oregon and Washington for more than 1,000 miles until it feeds into the Columbia River.


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Jul 27, 2006

Excelsior Geyser


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Another geyser in Yellowstone is the Excelsior Geyser, which has only been active three times in recorded history. In 1888 and again in 1890, the fountain-style geyser reportedly shot a stream of hot water 300 feet into the air (twice as high as Old Faithful's average stream). Excelsior's width was estimated to be at least 150 feet, giving it the highest water output of any known geyser ever. The top photo above was taken of Excelsior during a violent 1888 eruption.

After Excelsior’s last eruption in July of 1890, many scientists believed that the geyser would never erupt again. They were wrong. After lying dormant for 95 years, Exelsior roared to life again on September 14, 1985, spewing hot water more than 80 feet in the air for 47 straight hours and turning the nearby Firehole River completely muddy white for miles. Then, just as abruptly, Excelsior fell silent once again. It hasn't erupted since.

Today, Excelsior is merely a hot spring crater that discharges 4,000 gallons of water per minute. Who knows if it will ever erupt again? Only time will tell ...


Posted by Writer at 09:42 AM
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Jul 26, 2006

Old Faithful


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Old Faithful, the world's most famous geyser, erupts about every 90 minutes on average. Last Thursday afternoon (top photo), Jeff and Penny's family watched Old Faithful go off at 3:33 p.m., five minutes earlier than the ranger station had predicted. The park's predictions are almost always accurate within 10 minutes, hence the geyser's name. Two nights later, back at camp in Idaho, Penny's nephew Andrew created a geyser of his own by pouring a package of Mentos mint candies into an open 2-liter bottle of Diet Coke. The resultant eruption (caused by CO2 bubbles) shot the soda an estimated 12 feet in the air (bottom photo).


Posted by Writer at 09:24 AM
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Jul 20, 2006

Zion Narrows


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One of the most interesting hikes in Zion National Park is the Zion Narrows, where the Virgin River pushes itself between steep rock walls. Sam, Virginia, Paul and John walked to the end of the mile long “Gateway to the Narrows” and into the river, where they carefully made their way over the slippery, rolling rocks, most of the time wading in water a foot deep. At one place, the river is squeezed into a narrow pothole, and hikers are immersed up to their necks. It is best to have a walking stick and special sticky shoes made for these conditions. Virginia and Paul turned before the deepest place on the hike, but Sam and John forged on into the wilderness for another 2 miles. They stayed nice and cool on this trek. Even if you don’t get wet, the “Riverwalk”, which is wheelchair accessible, is a shady relief from the hot summer sun, with many hanging gardens. Sightings of deer, chipmunks, lizards, squirrels and birds are common.

If approached from the top of the canyon, the Narrows trip is 17 miles long and takes up to three days. Camping is allowed above Orderville Canyon, where day hikers are advised to turn around. The danger of flash floods after rains makes it essential to check with the Park Rangers at the Visitor Center before attempting this trail, and a special permit is required of all overnight backpackers.


Posted by Writer at 09:11 PM
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Jul 19, 2006

Utah Shakespearean Festival


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Brian Vaughn (left) as Hamlet and Dan Kremer as Clown in the Utah Shakespearean Festival’s 2006 production of Hamlet. (Photo by Karl Hugh. Copyright Utah Shakespearean Festival 2006.)

Sam and Virginia visited the Utah Shakespearean Festival again this year. This annual event features six plays. The three by famed British playwright performed this year were two tragedies, “Hamlet” and “Antony and Cleopatra”, and one comedy “The Merry Wives of Windsor”. “Hamlet” is probably the best known of the three, quoted in many other contexts. “To be or not to be, that is the question” is one of the famous lines used in movies and books, and comes from a soliloquy that the title character speaks.

The other plays included “On Golden Pond” and “Room Service”, a production made famous by the Marx Brothers in a comedic movie of the same name, which chronicles the trials of a 1930’s Broadway show producer. “H.M.S. Pinafore” by Gilbert and Sullivan, made a fun night of dancing and silly songs satirizing love and plot twists set aboard a ship of the British navy. A famous number from this operetta (or light opera) is “I’m Called Little Buttercup”.


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Jul 18, 2006

Zion National Park


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Sam and Virginia took their family to Zion National Park last week. In the evening they hiked the West Rim Trail, which follows a series of 21 switchbacks named “Walter’s Wiggles”, built by Walter Ruesch, the park’s first custodian, in 1924. The magnificent trail begins at the Grotto picnic area, crosses the Virgin River, and starts climbing towards Refrigerator Canyon, a wonderfully cool respite from summer heat.

After 2 miles, arriving at the top of the switchbacks, hikers have three choices. They can continue on the West Rim Trail for another 14 miles, stop and take in the view at Scout’s Lookout, or hike another 1/2 mile to the top of Angels Landing, a rocky promontory 1488 feet above the river valley. The latter hike is a steep ascent across a narrow trail using chains and is not for those with vertigo or physical limitations. At the top, there is a 360 degree view of Zion Canyon. The Canyon was named by early settlers after a place in The Bible.



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Apr 27, 2006

Antique Shop


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Brooklyn enjoyed browsing around in an antique shop in Snowflake, Arizona a couple of weeks ago. In the top photo, Brooklyn can be seen in the mirror taking the picture with the camera.


Posted by Writer at 06:43 AM
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Apr 14, 2006

Four Corners


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Wednesday evening, Jeff's family stopped at Four Corners National Monument, the only place in the United States where four states meet at a single point. The second photo shows the surveyor's marker at the exact location where the states intersect. The third photo shows Jeff's four daughters, each in a different state: Brooklyn is in Utah, River in Colorado, Indy in Arizona, and London in New Mexico. The site is administered by the Navajo Nation Parks and Recreation Department.


Posted by Writer at 05:43 AM
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Apr 13, 2006

Petrified Forest


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On their way home from Arizona yesterday, Jeff's family stopped at a roadside attraction near Petrified Forest National Park. The petrified wood at the site dates back to the Late Triassic period (225 million years ago). Most of the fossilized logs are from an extinct species called Araucarioxylon arizonicum. The trees were buried by sediment before they could decompose while volcanoes spewed tons of ash into the atmosphere. Water dissolved silica from the volcanic ash and carried it into the buried logs. This solution eventually crystallized the cell walls into quartz, leaving a highly detailed rock replica of the tree itself.


Posted by Writer at 03:27 PM
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Apr 12, 2006

Bison Ranch


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Earlier this week, Jeff and Penny and their daughters took a short spring break vacation to Bison Ranch, a condo development in Overgaard, Arizona. Not only were there several statues of bison there, but also a small herd of actual bison, also known as the American buffalo.


Posted by Writer at 03:20 PM
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Nov 09, 2005

Panguitch, Utah


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Panguitch (population 1,600) is the county seat of Utah's Garfield County. The predominantly agricultural community was first settled by Mormon pioneers in the 1860s, and resettled in 1871 after the Black Hawk War. It was incorporated as a town in 1899. Many of the historic homes and buildings in town were built with handmade red brick, including the home of Jeff's late grandparents, who built their home (bottom photo) themselves in the 1930s.


Posted by Writer at 08:34 AM
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Nov 08, 2005

Panguitch Lake


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Panguitch Lake (elevation 8,500 feet) is about 18 miles south of the small town of Panguitch, Utah. The 1,200-acre lake, located in an ancient natural volcanic crater, is a popular year-round fishing spot for rainbow trout and other types of fish. Ice fishing is popular in the winter when the lake usually freezes over. The name "Panguitch" comes from a Paiute Indian word meaning "big fish." Check back tomorrow for pictures of the town of Panguitch.


Posted by Writer at 09:22 AM
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Oct 19, 2005

Theater Tour


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While in Cedar City, Sam took a backstage tour of the theater used for the Utah Shakespearean Festival. One of the actresses from the production of "All's Well That Ends Well" served as the tour guide (top photo). The middle photo shows the dressing room, while the bottom photo shows the Styrofoam heads used to store the fake beards used by the actors. The beards are made out of yak hair.


Posted by Writer at 09:33 AM
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Oct 11, 2005

Waterskiing at Lake Powell


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A group of boys aged 11-18 and several adult chaperones (including Kyle, pictured here) recently traveled from Moab to Lake Powell for an all-day waterskiing trip. Lake Powell, the second-largest man-made lake in the United States, is 186 miles long with nearly 2,000 miles of shoreline. It was created when the Glen Canyon Dam was built on the Colorado River, although the reservoir took another 14 years to fill after the dam was finished in 1966. Drought-like conditions over the past five years have reduced the lake to 40 percent capacity (120 feet below its 1980 level), but this year's precipitation has brought about a slight increase in the water level. Lake Powell is a favorite recreation destination for millions of people each year.


Posted by Writer at 09:17 AM
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Aug 19, 2005

Bryce Canyon


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While traveling last week, Sam's family visited Bryce Canyon National Park, which includes a stunning natural ampitheater filled with reddish and orange-colored rock spires. Bryce Canyon was named after a pioneer homesteader named Ebenezer Bryce, to whom is attributed the following famous remark about the area: "It’sa hell of a place to lose a cow."


Posted by at 08:49 AM
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Aug 04, 2005

New Driver


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Zephyr, a resident of Portland, Oregon, is 15 years old. This summer he got his driving learner’s permit. During the first half of his summer vacation, he visited his dad in Moab. His plan was to work on his dad’s car, get it back into good shape, and drive it back to Portland. Being a small town, Moab was also a perfect place for a 15-year-old novice driver. Zephyr was able to practice driving with his dad in Moab before heading back home to Oregon. The top photo shows Zephyr making a lane change on a freeway in Salt Lake City. The bottom photo was taken in front of his Mercedes Benz with his parents in Boise, Idaho.


Posted by at 08:42 AM
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Aug 03, 2005

Sutter's Mill


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While in northern California, Jeff's family visited Sutter's Mill (the Marshall Gold Discovery State Historic Park). The site is where James W. Marshall found bits of gold in the riverbed in January of 1848 while he was building a sawmill for Captain John Sutter. The discovery touched off the famous California Gold Rush of 1849, which dramatically affected the history of the United States. The middle photo shows Penny in front of a rebuilt replica of the sawmill. The bottom photo shows what the sawmill's original location looks like today.


Posted by at 08:17 AM
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Aug 02, 2005

Yellowstone


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Sam visited Yellowstone National Park on his vacation recently. Yellowstone is famous for its thermal features such as geysers, hot springs and mud pots. There are over 10,000 thermal features, more than 500 hundred of which are geysers. In the top photo, Sam is standing in front of one of the most famous geysers, “Old Faithful,” before it erupts. The second photo shows the geyser erupting. Old Faithful erupts about every 90 minutes for 1 1/2 to 5 minutes and reaches heights of 106 - 184 feet (30 - 55m). It expels from 3,700 to 8,400 gallons (14,000 to 32,000 liters) of boiling water during each eruption.


Posted by at 09:30 AM
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Jul 28, 2005

Mount Rushmore


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While on vacation recently, Sam and Virginia also visited Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota. The faces of U.S. presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Theodore Roosevelt, and Abraham Lincoln are carved into the mountain. The memorial was created by sculptor Gutzon Borglum. Work started in 1927 and was completed in 1941. The actual carving was done by about 400 miners. One of the original workers was at the site and Sam talked to him and shook his hand. The workers used dynamite to remove most of the rock. Finishing work was done with pneumatic drills.


Posted by at 09:33 AM
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Jul 27, 2005

Devils Tower


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Sam and Virginia recently visited Devils Tower National Monument in Wyoming. Devils Tower itself is the core of an extinct volcano that rises 1,267 feet (386 meters) above the Belle Fourche River valley. The rest of the volcano has eroded away, leaving only the hardened magma that was at the core. Its distinctive shape comes from the way the magma crystallized as it slowly cooled. If you have seen the movie “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” you will recognize this formation as the location where the extra-terrestrials' spaceship landed.


Posted by at 10:20 AM
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Jul 26, 2005

Donner Party Memorial


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Also on the way to Colfax, California, Jeff's family stopped at a monument in northern California that memorializes the members of the Donner Party, a group of pioneer emigrants who becamed trapped in the Sierra Nevada mountains during the winter of 1846-47. The snowfall that winter measured nearly 22 feet (7 meters) deep, and 41 of the 87 people in the group died in what became one of the most legendary episodes in the history of Western migration (some of the survivors reportedly had to resort to eating human flesh from the bodies of the group members who had died). The monument is located up the Truckee Pass, just west of Reno, Nevada.


Posted by at 09:23 AM
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Jul 25, 2005

Great Salt Lake


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While on the way to California last weekend, Jeff's family stopped briefly and played at the southern shore of the Great Salt Lake, which covers some 1,200 square miles and is located northwest of Salt Lake City. A thin crust of salt covers vast stretches of flat ground where the lake's waters have receded due to evaporation. The lake itself is three to five times saltier than the ocean. Only small brine shrimp, a few species of algae, and some bacteria can survive in the water, but the lake's shores are a habitat for many types of birds and other animals.


Posted by at 09:15 AM
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Apr 22, 2005

More Arizona Photos


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On the way back from Arizona, Jeff and Brooklyn saw many saguaro cacti (top photo). This species of cactus can live for more than 200 years and grow as high as 50 feet. They also spotted an unusual trailer carrying alpacas. Alpacas are related to camels and llamas, but are much smaller. They are prized for their soft fleece. The bottom photo shows Monument Valley at the Utah-Arizona border, where new facilities are being constructed near the roadside.


Posted by at 09:25 AM
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Apr 21, 2005

Arizona Trip


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Jeff and Brooklyn recently made a weekend visit to Phoenix, Arizona, where Jeff's brother lives. They drove nine hours each way (Phoenix is approximately 480 miles or 775 km from Moab), leaving on Friday and returning on Sunday. Brooklyn enjoyed jumping on the trampoline in the backyard with her cousin. Check back tomorrow for more photos of their Arizona trip!


Posted by at 09:02 AM
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Mar 21, 2005

Trip to Taos


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Mary recently visited Taos, a small town in New Mexico. The area around Taos has been continuously inhabited for over 1,000 years (evidence suggests that there were inhabitants as far back as 4,000 years ago), making it one of the oldest existing communities in North America. Today, Taos is a popular tourist spot. Many people enjoy hiking and skiing in the nearby mountains. The town has a thriving artistic community, and there are many art galleries and shops where paintings, jewelry, clothes, and antiques are sold. The top photo shows Mary with several antique doors for sale at one of the shops.


Posted by at 09:29 AM
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Feb 25, 2005

Salt Lake's TRAX


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While in Salt Lake City, Sam took this picture of the valley's public light rail mass transportation system, known as TRAX. In this picture, a TRAX train is heading north on Main Street toward Temple Square as it prepares to turn left onto South Temple. The TRAX system, which first opened in 1999, now boasts a daily ridership of 40,000. An all-day pass (also good for buses) costs $2.70, while single-trip tickets are $1.35. The statue seen at the right of the photo is of Brigham Young, who led the Mormon pioneer settlers into the Salt Lake valley in 1847.


Posted by at 09:33 AM
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Feb 22, 2005

San Francisco Visit


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Jacci visited the San Francisco, Cailfornia area recently and brought back a few photos of her trip. The top photo shows her brother Rex in front of a large redwood tree. The middle picture is of a tank full of various jellyfish at Monterey Bay Aquarium. The bottom photo shows a view of Monterey Bay from the coast.


Posted by at 04:54 PM
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Feb 18, 2005

Trip to Stanford


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About 25 students from Moab's Grand County High School (including Christy’s daughter) recently traveled to northern California by bus to participate in a debate competition sponsored by Stanford University (middle photo). Before heading to Palo Alto for the competition, the students toured parts of San Francisco and also visited Alcatraz Island (which used to be the home of the infamous Alcatraz federal prison, also known as “The Rock”) (bottom photo).


Posted by at 08:53 AM
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Feb 17, 2005

Snowshoeing in Bryce Canyon


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Jeff, his daughter Brooklyn, and her Girl Scout troop went snowshoeing in Bryce Canyon National Park last weekend. The park’s elevation ranges from 6,500 to 9,000 feet above sea level (2,000 to 2,750 meters). Bryce Canyon is located about 275 miles (442 km) from Moab, or about six hours by car. The snow was about 150 centimeters deep at the top of the plateau that overlooks the canyon, a natural amphitheater filled with hundreds of orange-colored rock formations called “hoodoos.”


Posted by at 09:02 AM
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Feb 10, 2005

Cessna 150


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Christy’s friend recently flew his Cessna 150 airplane from Death Valley, California to Moab for a weekend visit (the trip between Death Valley and Moab typically takes about five or six hours each way). The Cessna 150 (average speed: 70 km per hour) is one of the most popular private airplanes in the world. They are not too expensive (you can buy a used Cessna 150 built in the 1980s for about the same price as a new automobile). They are also easy to fly. This particular plane was made in 1968. Christy’s friend has owned it for more than 20 years.


Posted by at 09:13 AM
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Feb 08, 2005

More from Vancouver


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While in British Columbia, Yoko spent a couple of days in Alert Bay, Cormorant Island (top photo) which is about 10 hours by ferry and driving from Vancouver city. As she crossed the U.S.-Canadian border (the world’s longest unfortified border – 8,900 km) and back into the United States, she took photos of the duty-free shop at the border and of the U.S. flag at the port of entry station in Blaine, Washington.


Posted by at 09:06 AM
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Feb 07, 2005

Vancouver Visit


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DHC U.S. Office staff member Yoko recently flew to Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada to celebrate her friend’s parents’ 50th wedding anniversary. Although the weather was cold and drizzly most of the time, she had an enjoyable visit. The top two photos show Yoko wearing a traditional Pacific Northwest Native American raven mask. The bottom photo shows the entrance to a ferry that takes cars across the bay. Check back tomorrow for more photos of Yoko’s trip!


Posted by at 09:00 AM
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