A Jackson Christmas Carol

Traditional Music NIght Cape County History Center 12-10-2016I love going to the Cape Girardeau County History Center in Jackson for their monthly traditional music nights, but I wasn’t sure about this one, which was billed as a Christmas sing-a-long.

See, I’m not crazy about Christmas music for good reason. When I was at The Gastonia (NC) Gazette or The Athens (OH) Messenger, I’d work my normal Christmas Eve shift, then load wife and cat in the car and head out for Cape. It was eight hours and change from Athens, and almost ten hours from Gastonia.

Younger readers won’t understand this, but cars didn’t always come with CD players, FM radios, satellite radios and portable MP3 devices. In fact, mine didn’t even have so much as an 8-track in it. That meant that we had 10 hours of nothing but fading AM radio stations playing Christmas music punctuated by static as we would go in and out of range. By the time we rolled into 1618 Kingsway Drive at midnight or 2 in the morning, my tank of Christmas music was overfilled.

Not your usual caroling

Traditional Music NIght Cape County History Center 12-10-2016A lot of traditional songs were played, but they had music like Chuck Picklesimer’s account of Christmas tree harvesting documented in West Virginia Credit Card. I kept waiting for them to play a song I contributed to a company holiday mix tape: Chipmunks Roasting Over an Open Fire, but it must not have been on their list.

A ride through Jackson City Park

Jackson City Park Xmas 12-10-2016When the sing-a-long wrapped up, it was time to cruise over to the city park. I was impressed at how pretty Jackson’s City Park was decorated last year, but 2016 is even more impressive. (In case you’ve forgotten, you can click on any photo to make it larger, then click on the left or right side to move through the images.)

Even more trees had lights

Jackson City Park Xmas 12-10-2016After leaving Jackson, I made a loop of North County Park, a traditional place to see Christmas displays, but I didn’t shoot anything. Maybe it’s because I’ve seen those displays so many times, or maybe it’s because I love seeing trees wrapped in lights rather than man-made exhibits, but I have to vote for Jackson as the place to go.

Video with Silent Night

 

I turned on my digital recorder at some point during the pickin’, and captured the group singing all three verses of Silent Night. That sounded like the perfect background music for a drive through the Jackson Park.

(Ignore all the data streaming my at the bottom of the frame. That’s stuff my DOD Tech DOD-LS470W dash camera records. It’s pretty cool. It even has a GPS built in so I can overlay the information on a map. When I tie that in with the time stamps on my digital photos, it helps me figure out where a photo was taken.)

It’s that time of year again

Buy From Amazon.com to Support Ken Steinhoff

I hesitate to even bring this up since I’ve slacked off so much this year, but you can help keep this site alive by pushing the big RED BUTTON at the top left of the page (or, right here) when you shop on Amazon. I get a tiny piece of change off every order, and it doesn’t cost you a penny extra. There’s also a tiny Yellow Button for making donations through PayPal, but I don’t know if I’ve earned any of those lately.

 

Jackson Park’s Lights

Jackson City Park lights 11-28-2015Friend Carla Jordan mentioned the trees in the Jackson City Park had been wrapped with lights. I said I had seen workers building an archway over the bridge that crosses Hubble Creek earlier in the week.

I needed to run some errands, so I thought I’d check it out. It wasn’t until I turned to The Missourian later that I saw a story that the tree lights had been turned on in a big ceremony Friday night.

When I went into the park from the south side like I usually do, intending on getting to the other side by going across the low-water crossing, the path was blocked because all the rain had turned it into a medium-water crossing. You’ll need to go in from the north if this rain keeps up.

There were a lot of displays along the roadway, much like you see in North County Park, but they weren’t lighted. I don’t know if that’ll come later or not.

Jackson Park photo gallery

Click on any photo to make it larger, then use your arrow keys to move around. By the way, read the plea below. Y’all owe me big time for this. It’s been cold and rainy the past two days. I got my feet soaked and my ears cold taking these photos. There’s a nasty rumor that this is what winter in Missouri is like. Heated seats or not, my van might get pointed back to Florida before spring if that’s the case.

It’s that time of year again

Buy From Amazon.com to Support Ken SteinhoffEverybody is getting all excited about Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Overspend Wednesday (I made that one up), so I’m going to join the din. I hate to keep harping on this, but my mailbox is full or ads and teases, so it must work.

If you are going to shop Amazon anyway, please go to my blog and click on the big red ‘Click Here’ button at the top left of the page (or, this one). That’ll take you directly to Amazon with a code embedded. If you buy something, I’ll make from four to seven percent of your purchase price without it costing you anything.

Think of it as being your painless Christmas present to me.

Searching for Fall Color

Jackson Park 10-25-2015_1783I went out looking for colorful leaves a couple times in the last week. The sun was bright and the sky blue on the first day, but the leaves hadn’t turned yet. The last couple of days have been a bit overcast with passing drizzles, but I did the best with what I had to work with.

Color came looking

Kingsway Drive 10-25-2015After driving all over Cape and Bollinger counties, I took a short nap, then headed out to pick up some groceries. This is what hit me as soon as I opened the door. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a sky as blood-red as this one. Even the Boltons across the street were marveling at the sight. Based on the number of Facebook posts I’ve seen, everyone in Cape must have been standing slack-jawed in their yards.

Not more than two minutes after this picture was taken (and it’s not enhanced, by the way), all the color was gone. Just goes to show: “shoot ’em when you see ’em.”

Photo gallery

Some of the photos were taken in my back yard; some were at the City Park in Jackson; the tractors were on U between Crump and Gravel Hill. Click on any photo to make it larger, then use your arrow keys to move around the gallery.

 

Cape Splash Adds Big New Slide

Cape Splash 06-10-2015Summer has hit Cape hard. We’ve been in the 90s the past few days, and I’m already hearing the people who complained about the cold winter wishing it would come back. I’ve been watching stuff happening on the northeast side of Cape Splash for several weeks.

(You might remember that this is just about where I thought the Heisler Heifer Highway came out.)

Five flumes

Cape Splash 06-10-2015The Missourian reports that what I’m seeing is a new slide with five flumes: a three-lane mat racer this is 319 feet long and has a 30-foot-tall tower; a 265-foot partially enclosed free-fall slide, and a 259-foot triple-drop slide. The story says that the cost of the project, including a contingency allowance, is $1.27 million.

The first thing that strikes me (other than the cost) is the amount of hot concrete there is to walk on. Wife Lila, who just did her first mile swim of the year, says that white concrete isn’t hot.

I defer to her wisdom (we’ve been married since 1969, so I’ve gotten good at that), because I rarely walk around outside barefoot. I stepped on a bee when I was about two years old and came to the conclusion that shoes were invented for a reason.

Looks like a chain gang

Cape Splash 06-10-2015After shooting the first two photos, I wondered what the heck those folks were doing? They appeared to be walking back in forth with grim determination. They looked like older folks, but didn’t care enough to walk back to the car for a longer telephoto lens to confirm that (you DID hear me say the temps were in the 90s, right?).

Since there was no splashing or frivolity going on, I could only conclude they were walking in water as a Good For You Exercise, not for fun.

Click on the photo to maker it larger to see if you agree.

Other water parks

Long before Cape even thought about a water park, my kids slid down the Lickitysplit Water slide halfway between Cape and Jackson. Of course, even before that, we had Hubble Creek in the Jackson City Park to frolic in.