Sunday, June 19, 2022

Don Garlits Dragster Museum

 Well, this one might not be for everyone but, when you are exploring, it's fun to see sights that are out of your interest zone. This one could definitely qualify for some of you.

This is the Don Garlits Dragster Museum outside of Ocala, Florida, where he is from.

This place is HUGE !! Soooo many dragsters, funny cars, photos, trophies...and on and on...

There is even a place for just engines !

There is also another building with just the cars that he's restored over the years when he stopped racing....dozens.

The first Funny Car

LOVE the blue

For the red car above...

He called his dragsters the Swamp Rat, with many "editions". He's had 38 of them !. Here's a link to all of them....

If you notice, all the engines were in front of the driver but, Don had a terrible accident where the front of the dragster broke, injured him and ended him in the hospital for months. 

Notice the engine part continuing down the strip while the back, engine part, is looking straight down at the road! That's Don in there.

Here's the video of the dragster coming apart:

While in the hospital, Don came up with an idea to put the engine BEHIND the driver. This was revolutionary. Here's the result:

Everyone soon copied.

The tires on these dragsters are enormous ....check this out...

...but who's the geez in the front???

This was a very nice stop. We spent only one night in Ocala but it was worth it.

...on to our next top !...


Thursday, April 21, 2022

A Dollhouse Museum you won't believe !

My wife LOVES dollhouses so, in our travels, I'm always looking for places that showcase them. I never knew that we would find one the best one in Kentucky in a little town of 16,717 people...Danville, KY. We rearranged our trip itinerary to go visit this place and, man, it was soooo worth it!. Kim spent over 3 hours inside looking at over 200 Dollhouses !!

First off, Kim took about 492 photos inside so don't expect to see them all ! But, we'll show you enough to overwhelm you with the immenseness of this place.

This is the place. Looks are deceiving. Wait until we take you inside!

 Here's some text from their website:

The Great American Dollhouse Museum showcases over 200 dollhouses, miniature buildings, and room boxes, furnished in remarkable detail and populated with tiny people at work and play.

The Museum’s unique focus is the depiction of American social history in miniature. The Exhibition Hall presents as three major areas: 

The first, a timeline of United States History from Native American through Colonial, Old West, early Southwest and modern eras, gives the visitor a vivid sense of what it would be like to live in different regions of our country at various times in the past. 

The second major display area, a complete miniature town circa 1910, includes mansion, business, retail and factory districts as well as a Shaker village. Here, the visitor is lured into detailed fictional stories of the lives and characters of the town.

The last section of the Museum contains a heavily forested fantasy land with faeries, elves, witches, trolls and a walk-in dragon cave. It’s just for fun and always well-loved by visitors of all ages.

Let's look at just one example:

Here's what the overall dollhouse looks like. Now, we'll take a closer look....

Pretty amazing huh?

Here's some others....

As you enter the museum, there's a shop as well where people can purchase "parts" for their own dollhouses. As you see, Kim has put her finger into some of the photos to show the tiny scale of these pieces.

...and what were Katie and I doing while Kim was inside? Well, we hung out as I slogged through the 1,440 pages and 587,287 words in the book War and Peace! 

Look...even Katie is interested in Dollhouses !

Seriously, we took walks, read and tried to stay in the shade. The time passed quickly.

That's it for this entry...kind of different. Hope you enjoyed it.


Oh, we'll be posting more in the upcoming months so keep an eye out for the email notifications.

Sunday, August 15, 2021

Washington to Wisconsin 2021

Well, we're waaaay behind in our blog entries as we've already visited 12 places and are on our 13th one right now. So, instead of many individual entries, we're going to combine them into one only. Enjoy the photos!

Our trip so far....starting with Washington out west, all the way to Wisconsin

WASHINGTON: The Dry Lake Falls were created by massive floods around 10,000 years ago. These cliffs are 400 feet tall and over 3.5 miles wide! The flood waters that came over the cliffs here were over 400 higher than you see here! This cliff area started 20 miles downstream and, as the water carved out the rock, it gradually moved upstream to where it is located today.

Dry Lake Falls. Notice the yellow circle? There are three cars there...for scale.

LIBBY, MONTANA: We have stayed here 3 times before but, even though the town's population is only 2847,  the RV park is set amongst the forest making for a camping-like experience. 

Kootenai Falls. This is our favorite place to visit in Libby. We usually spend a few hours enjoying the rushing water while having some lunch.

Glacier National Park, east side. We came here to do one thing only....go kayaking in the glacier we did!

This lake was surrounded on all sides with mountains this size. Fantastic!

Katie seems unimpressed by the spectacular scenery.

HAVRE, MONTANA: First off, Havre is pronounced like "Have Her". We stayed one night only but the horses in the field in front of our RV like to come over to get some attention. Other than that, we just hung around the park and relaxed.

THEODORE ROOSEVELT NATIONAL PARK, NORTH UNIT: The large spherical boulders found here are called concretions. They are usually round but can be any shape. Concretions are formed within rocks by deposits of mineral around a core.

Gotta little close, don't you think?

CUSTER STATE PARK: We saw a Fourth of July parade in Custer City, did a little kayaking, hiking and just poking around.

Look how calm the lake is. Very peaceful.

Parade started off with all the children. Love small town parades!

UNION PACIFIC GOLDEN SPIKE TOWER: This is the largest railyard in the country! Over 100 tracks going east and west ! Someday, I'll do a blog entry just about the workings of this place. Amazing! YOu can go here to view a live view of the yard in operation:

This is only the east bound traffic. 

Just some of the facts: Every 24 hours, Bailey Yard handles 10,000 railroad cars. Of those, 3,000 are sorted daily in the yard’s eastward and Golden Spike Tower overlooking Bailey Yard’s westward yards, nicknamed “hump” yards. Using a mound cresting 34 feet for eastbound trains and 20.1 feet for those heading west, these two hump yards allow four cars a minute to roll gently into any of 114 “bowl” tracks where they become part of trains headed for dozens of destinations. Together, these two yards have 18 receiving and 16 departure tracks.

Train operations and repair shops at Bailey Yard are open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The fueling and service center processes more than 9,000 locomotives each month, using technology like overhead cranes and elevated work bays to maintain fluid operations.

This is the Golden Spike Tower where you can go to the 8th floor to view the entire railyard.

One last image of an aerial view of all the rail tracks.

Okay, that's it for now...hope you enjoyed all of this. It goes without saying that, each of these stops, could be a story in and of itself. But, rather than bore you to pieces with thousands of photos and text, we thought it would be best to summarize. Let us know your thoughts and we'll see you next time as we head down to see our boy in Atlanta with stops at Nashville, Shiloh, Savanah, Charleston and the largest dollhouse museum in the country!


You'll have to ask about Steve's "hat".

Don Garlits Dragster Museum

 Well, this one might not be for everyone but, when you are exploring, it's fun to see sights that are out of your interest zone. This o...