23 July 2017

Savannah & Daufuskie Island Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2044

I just posted 2 new albums of photos. One is from our trip to Savannah and the other is from a side trip that we took while in Savannah to Daufuskie Island.

The Savannah photos include a week of Forrest Gump, traditional southern food, bucolic streets and squares lined with live oak tree covered in Spanish moss, old mansions, civil war sites/memorials, old forts, lighthouses, a historic plantation and a cemetery.

The Daufuskie photos are of a place that you may not heard of, but was the highlight of our trip. It’s a small island near Hilton Head Island. You take a ferry to get there and then travel by golf cart. Check out the my photos for a slightly more in depth description of the island.

The Savannah photos are here and the Daufuskie Island ones are here. Enjoy!

16 June 2017

Finally put tons of photos on Flickr

Category: Photography — Posted by Michael at 1941

I’ve had a Flickr account for 12 years and a paid Pro account for about 5. Mostly, I’ve only used it for sharing photos with family members semi-privately. They’re photos that I don’t care if others see, but I also don’t want to bore you with photos of kids opening Christmas gifts, etc. I used to use Google’s Picassa Web Albums for this, but they went the way of the dodo a few years ago.

Up until now, the only photos in my public Flickr stream were photos cross-posted from my Instagram account so that I have an exit-strategy from that service since they’re now owned by Facebook and using any Facebook-owned property makes me a little (ok, a lot) queasy. Plus it gives the photos a some extra exposure.

That has changed change. I’ve spent the past few years tagging the photos from my website and preparing them to be uploaded to Flickr. As much as I’d prefer to drive traffic to my site, cross posting them to Flickr will get them a some more exposure and, if nothing else, make me feel like I’m getting my money’s worth from my Flickr Pro subscription.

So, I’ve posted almost 8000 photos in my Flickr feed over the past week or so. They’re broken down in albums and further separated into collections by year, so you’ll be able to navigate through them if you wish.

Enjoy the photos, and feel free to share them and comment on them which is something you can’t (currently) do on my website.

03 June 2017

Photos from the Final Tour of the Circus

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1127

Tiger and trainerThe last time I went to the circus when it rolled into Philadelphia, I was in elementary school. When we heard that Ringling Brothers was shutting down the circus for good this year, we decided that we should go see its last hurrah. We splurged a little and got seats in the second row. There were two separate touring shows this year. The one that came to Philadelphia was “Out of this World.” (The other being “Circus Xtreme.”) Wow, what a difference from the last time I saw the show. I remember seeing Gunther Gable, elephants and a unicorn. I probably don’t want to know what kind of animal rights violations were committed in the production of the unicorn, but I did miss the elephants. As for Gunther, there was a big cat trainer there who was also quite good. The other surprising part was that besides the acrobats, clowns, contortionists, dog trainers, etc., a portion of the show was also performed on ice. Add some horse stunts, motorcycles in a steel sphere and a menagerie of animals including a kangaroo and you have quite a fun spectacle. It’s really sad that this will be the last year that anyone will get to experience it.

Relive the circus experience by checking out my photos here.

02 June 2017

Philadelphia Flower Show Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1908

Tulips & BicycleDespite living in the Philadelphia area my entire life, I’ve never gone to the annual Philadelphia Flower Show. I’m not necessarily a flower enthusiast, but I’m a photographer and have spent plenty of time photographing flowers elsewhere like Longwood Gardens, the Macy’s Flower Show in Chicago and many other places. This year’s theme was Holland and tulips are my favorite flowers to photograph so how could I resist? Despite it being a damp rainy day, we hopped on the train to Center City and spent the day indoors enjoying the sights and sounds (Dutch techno light show, anyone? See the video below.). It’s truly amazing to see what the Philadelphia Horticultural Society builds inside the convention center. Besides flowers, the amount of stuff they load in there, trees, landscaping, tons of dirt and mulch, art exhibits, etc. is beyond impressive. It made for a fun (and colorful) day.

Check out the photos here.

13 January 2017

Lake Wallenpaupack Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1218

Lackawaxen RiverI just posted the last of my photos from 2016. Back in October, we spent a long weekend at Lake Wallenpaupack, a man-made lake in the Northern Poconos created as a reservoir for a hydroelectric plant. Because we left in the evening after work, we stopped and spent a night at Sands in Bethlehem before heading the rest of the way up to the Poconos. Our first stop was in Honesdale to board a train for a scenic ride along the path of the former Delaware and Hudson Canal to check out the beautiful Fall foliage. We then headed to Hawley to check in to our motel right across the street from the lake. We sent much of the weekend walking and driving around the lake and exploring downtown Hawley. Along the way we found time to stop at a few very cool diners. After heading out of town, on our way home, we went to a cider mill because nothing says Fall like a cider mill. Then we visited the home of the first chief of the US Forest Service, Grey Towers. It’s now a national historic landmark and museum. All in all, it was a slower paced, more relaxing vacation than we usually like to take, but it was still a lot of fun.

Check out the photos right here. Enjoy!

29 November 2016

Looking back at Gatlinburg

Category: Photography,Randomness — Posted by Michael at 2211

Seeing the news today about the horrific wildfire affecting Gatlinburg, Tennessee and surrounding area is heartbreaking. I vacationed there 2 years ago. It’s a truly fun tourist destination. I’m at least happy to hear that Emergency Management officials initial report that Ober Gatlinburg ski resort had been destroyed turned out to be false.

This seems like a good time to take a look at my photos from Gatlinburg when it wasn’t the frightening disaster area it is right now.

03 July 2016

Chicago Photos

Category: Life,None,Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1339

Chicago TheatreI finally posted my MANY photos from my trip to Chicago.

Chicago is one of those places that I’ve been familiar with through the years mainly because of so many various TV shows set there. As a kid I watched Perfect Strangers (anyone remember TGIF?). In high school and college it was ER and Chicago Hope. Then more recently it’s been NBC’s Chicago Fire, Chicago PD and Chicago Med. On top of this, I feel like I know Chicago and the rest of Chicagoland because I’ve been a loyal listener of the Eric & Kathy morning show on WTMX in Chicago for well over a decade. However, I’d never actually been to the Windy City. This trip finally corrected that.

We spent 7 days in Chicago. We stayed right downtown in the Loop, a block south of the river. Over the course of the week, we walked approximately 50 miles, climbed 201 flights of stairs and road the L 22 times. Needless to say, we covered much of the city (at least the downtown area) while even finding time to spend a relaxing evening with a cousin who lives out there.

To say that Chicago is an incredible food city is an understatement. My normal diet was suspended for the week as we check out the best places to get real Chicago deep dish pizza, Chicago dogs and Italian beef along with stops at Harry Caray’s and Mike Ditka’s. Oh, and don’t forget the Portillo’s chocolate cake.

Check out all of the photos plus some videos and a list of our many great dining experiences right here.

20 June 2016

Washington State Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2005

Puget Sounds, Silverdale WAWhile in Washington State for business, I stayed at the Silverdale Beach Hotel. My room had a nice view of the Puget Sound. During my week there, I snapped a few photos from my balcony and from the shoreline of the Sound. There’s also one photo from Poulsbo where we went for dinner one night.

Take a look at these photos here.

08 April 2016

COLD Jim Thorpe Winterfest Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1955

Jim ThorpeI just posted an album of photos from The Jim Thorpe Winterfest back in February. 3 years ago, we went to the annual festival. It’s a fun event that encompasses the entire downtown area of this quaint little mountain town. We decided to go back this year since we had a free long weekend. The big difference from last time was that this time the temperature throughout the weekend was 5 degrees below zero with a wind chill of -24!!! I like the cold, but this was painful cold unless you had the right gear on. I’m quite happy that I bought a new LL Bean parka last Fall.

There was an ice carver and a wood carver creating sculptures on the street. There’s a “mug walk” where you purchase a mug and them show it at a bunch of stores throughout the town and they give you some small item in return. It’s a fun way to get people into every little shop. Of course, our favorite shop is the Country Cottage where the “pickle lady” resides. She makes the best pickles you’ll ever try. This year, the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railroad was also running. We took an excursion on that which made for a fun break from the bitter cold.

Check out the photos here. You may need to put a coat on to look at them.

06 April 2016

Scranton Photo Album

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2054

McDade ParkWhile in the Poconos for the Jim Thorpe Winterfest, we headed up to Scranton for the day to visit the Pennsylvania Anthracite Heritage Museum. I highly recommend stopping in if you ever get the chance. The history and heritage of the miners and their families is a fascinating tale. Living as close as we do to the PA coal mining region, I’m sorry I haven’t explored it more. I hope to head back up there one day and take the coal mine tour since it was closed for the winter. We also visited the Historic Scranton Iron Furnaces. It was here that we realized that we did not wear enough layers for the subzero temperatures and after exploring the furnaces we headed directly to the nearest Wal-Mart for additional hand warmers and thermal underwear!

On the way back down to the hotel in Lehighton, we made a stop at Mohegan Sun Pocono (formerly Pocono Downs) in Wilkes-Barre for dinner and a little gambling.

You can see the photos from our day in Scranton here.

21 February 2016

Bethlehem Steel Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1634

Bethlehem Steel PhotosI usually go to Bethlehem a few times each year to visit the Sands casino for dinner and a little gambling. I also go to there every year for their Chriskindlmarkt. The striking thing about the city is the long idle Bethlehem Steel plant. The casino is built on part of its former site and the Chriskindlmarkt is now held on another part of the site. However, much of the plant still remains as a monument to what was once the most important business in the city, if not the entire region. This year while at the Chriskindlmarkt, we discovered the new Hoover-Mason trestle walkway. It allows an up close look at the trestle that was formerly used to bring coke, limestone & iron ore to the blast furnaces and serves as a small museum depicting the history of Bethlehem Steel.

You can take a look at the photos I took while walking along the trestle in this album.

20 February 2016

Delaware Covered Bridges and Fall Foliage Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 1032

Delaware Covered Bridges and FoliageEveryone knows I love covered bridges and that Fall is one of my favorite times of the year. So, what better way to spend a Fall day than visiting every covered bridge in the state of Delaware (SPOILER: there are only 3!) and then driving around looking for Fall colored foliage on the back roads of northern Delaware and southeastern Pennsylvania.

Now you can finally take look at some of what we found in this album.

17 February 2016

Watertown, New York Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2151

Watertown PhotosThe last of my photos from our trip to the 1000 Islands are finally online. We took advantage of the cool Fall weather that had already arrived in northern New York and visited the Burrville Cider Mill in Watertown where we watched cider being pressed before stocking up on so many varieties of delicious apples to take home. We stopped in Watertown again on the way home from Alex Bay and visited the New York State Zoo at Thompson Park. The zoo is populated with animals that are native to New York.

You can check out this album right here. While you’re at it, check out the other photos from this trip from the 1000 Islands and Upper Canada Village.

15 February 2016

Upper Canada Village/Pumpkinferno Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2159

Upper Canada Village photosI just posted another album from this past October. This one contains photos from side trip to Upper Canada Village in Morrisburg, Ontario that we took while we were visiting Alexandria Bay and the 1000 Islands region. During the day, we took a guided tour of the British Canadian colonial village. After having been to many American colonial museums/villages over the years, it was quite interesting to see the colonial era from the point of view of the British loyalists. After dinner at the McIntosh Inn, we went back to Upper Canada Village which was transformed into Pumpkinferno. A seasonal display of over 6,000 hand carved pumpkins. It was quite a sight.

You can check out the album right here. Take a look at my 1000 Islands photos here and watch for my Watertown NY photos coming soon too!

08 February 2016

1000 Islands & Alexandria Bay Photos

Category: Photography,Site Updates — Posted by Michael at 2152

Alexandria Bay & 1000 Islands photosI finally posted then photos from last October’s trip to the 100 Islands region of New York. When we got up there, the area was quieting down since the summer high season was over and Fall weather was settling in, but there was still plenty to do while avoiding the massive crowds of summer. Our hotel in Alexandria Bay was right on the St. Lawrence River with a great view of Boldt Castle and the shipping traffic of the St. Lawrence Seaway. We visited and toured the castle while taking a boat tour of some of the over 1800 islands in the area. Besides exploring the village of Alex Bay (as the locals call it), the trip also included an Oktoberfest at a winery (yup, another vacation with a German festival!) and some side trips to Upper Canada Village and Watertown, NY which you can see in separate albums.

The photos can be viewed here. Two more albums from side trips we made during this vacation, Upper Canada Village and Watertown NY, will be forthcoming soon.

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