Friday, October 31, 2014

Andy Griffith's Hometown

We went to North Carolina to see quite a number of sights but, by the time we got there, we were a bit tuckered out from the five weeks of traveling and Hobbes wasn't doing as well so we only saw a few places.This time, it's Mt. Airy (where Andy Griffith grew up)

Kim and I are really big fans of the Andy Griffith Show and I've always wanted to see what his hometown was like. You can go around the town and visit Andy's house where he grew up, Aunt Bee's place, etc... but, for the most part, the downtown is filled with antique shops and Andy Griffith souvenir shops. Nice place to stroll but a little short of the TV show. Well, one thing was nice....most shops had the TV show playing so I got to laugh all the way through the few shops we entered.

These drawings of all the main characters in The Andy Griffith Show were in the Visitor's Center on Main St.

The outside of Floyd's Barber Shop. Floyd is a great character in the goofy.

Inside with all the photos plastered on the wall of people who have had their hair cut.

They have tours of the town, which includes Andy's house, where Aunt Bee lived, etc and they give the tour in a perfect replica of the police car used in the TV series....very cool idea.

The iconic image as a statue of Andy and Opie at the start of each episode.

Kim had a great idea to shoot this from behind. I think it work's great. So lifelike this way.

This statue was at the entrance to the Andy Griffith Museum which was very very extensive. It had Barney's suit that he wore when he went on a date. Goober's dress outfit. Andy's original polic desk.....and much more. But...they did not let us take any photos !  I hate it when museums do that. There was so much memorabilia in there that would've been nice to see again.

I had no idea that the show ran for 8 seasons and made 249 episodes. We tape ours with our DirecTV receiver and watch them at least 2-3 times a week.

Here's some further information into the show from the web...

The Andy Griffith Show is an American sitcom first televised on CBS between October 3, 1960 and April 1, 1968. The show, a semi-spin-off from an episode of The Danny Thomas Show, stars Andy Griffith, who portrays the widowed sheriff of the fictional small community of Mayberry, North Carolina.

His life is complicated by an inept, but well-meaning deputy, Barney Fife (Don Knotts), a spinster aunt and housekeeper, Aunt Bee (Frances Bavier), and a precocious young son, Opie (Ron Howard). Local ne'er-do-wells, bumbling pals, and temperamental girlfriends further complicate his life.

Regarding the time-period of the show, Griffith said in a Today Show interview: "Well, though we never said it, and though it was shot in the 1960s, it had a feeling of the 1930s. It was when we were doing it, of a time gone by."The series never placed lower than seventh in the Nielsen ratings and ended its final season at number one. It has been ranked by TV Guide as the 9th-best show in American television history. Though neither Griffith nor the show won awards during its eight-season run, series co-stars Knotts and Bavier accumulated a combined total of six Emmy Awards. The series spawned its own spin-off, Gomer Pyle, U.S.M.C. (1964), a sequel series, Mayberry R.F.D. (1968), and a reunion telemovie, Return to Mayberry (1986).

Black and white reruns have aired on numerous networks and currently air on TV Land, while the complete series is available on DVD. All eight seasons are also now available by streaming video services such as Netflix. An annual festival celebrating the show, Mayberry Days, is held each year in Griffith's hometown of Mount Airy, North Carolina. The show's enduring popularity has also generated significant show-related merchandise.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Up, Up and Awayyyyy

Almost a song title...anyone guess which one? By the Fifth Dimension?

"Up, Up and Away, my beautiful, my beautiful balooooon."

We came to Statesville, North Carolina for the NC Balloon Festival having never been to a complete one before. We saw part of one in Iowa but this one we planned on taking it all in....and were not disappointed.  So colorful.

This one had images that depicted his lifetime.

In order to see them all take off at 8am, we had to get over there by 6:30 in order to get parking, find a place to put our seats and wait. It was 42 degrees ! While we waited I took a few photos of the moon.

They also had a few comical balloons.

A Scarecrow...see the bird on his right arm?
When Pigs Fly....

...and his curly tail.
Rocket Man....HUGE !!
One half was this cute pussycat....

...the other half was the Owl....get it? The Owl and the Pussycat.

This one was very special...

And, of course, the pilots and crew that worked to put it all together for us....

We went two mornings to see the lift offs. We tried to get to the festival on Saturday night for the glow but could not get near the place for the traffic. Still, we had a great time.

There were about 50 balloons in all but, when they take off, they're controlled by one guy so they all don't take off at once and bang into each other.

Up, Up...and Awaaaayyyy....
Pretty aren't they?

Steve and Kim.