Portage la Prairie in Manitoba

24 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  17 minutes

Municipal Building National Historic Site © Amqui/cc-by-sa-3.0

Municipal Building National Historic Site © Amqui/cc-by-sa-3.0

Portage la Prairie is a small city in the Central Plains Region of Manitoba, Canada. As of 2016, the population was 13,304 and the land area of the city was 24.68 square kilometres (9.53 sq mi). Portage la Prairie is approximately 75 kilometres (47 mi) west of Winnipeg, along the Trans-Canada Highway (exactly halfway between the provincial boundaries of Saskatchewan and Ontario). The community sits on the Assiniboine River, which flooded the town persistently until a diversion channel north to Lake Manitoba (the Portage Diversion) was built to divert the flood waters. The city is surrounded by the Rural Municipality of Portage la Prairie. According to Environment and Climate Change Canada, Portage la Prairie has the most sunny days during the warm months in Canada. It is the administrative headquarters of the Dakota Tipi First Nations reserve.   read more…

St. John’s in Newfoundland

22 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  16 minutes

Cabot Tower on Signal Hill © flickr.com - Michel Rathwell/cc-by-2.0

Cabot Tower on Signal Hill © flickr.com – Michel Rathwell/cc-by-2.0

St. John’s is the capital and largest city of the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador, located on the eastern tip of the Avalon Peninsula on the island of Newfoundland. The city spans 446.04 km² (172.22 sq mi) and is the easternmost city in North America (excluding Greenland). Its name has been attributed to the belief that John Cabot sailed into the harbour on the Nativity of John the Baptist in 1497, although it is most likely a legend that came with British settlement. A more realistic possibility is that a fishing village with the same name existed without a permanent settlement for most of the 16th century. Indicated as São João on a Portuguese map from 1519, it is one of the oldest cities in North America. It was officially incorporated as a city in 1888. With a metropolitan population of approximately 212,579 (as of February 9, 2022), the St. John’s Metropolitan Area is Canada’s 20th-largest metropolitan area and the second-largest Census Metropolitan Area (CMA) in Atlantic Canada, after Halifax. The city has a rich history, having played a role in the Seven Years’ War, the American Revolutionary War, and the War of 1812. Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi received the first transatlantic wireless signal in St. John’s. Its history and culture have made it into an important tourist destination. St. John’s was referred to in Irish as Baile Sheáin (Johnstown), in the poetry of Donnchadh Ruadh Mac Conmara (1715–1810), and among speakers of the Irish language in Newfoundland.   read more…

Tarzana in Los Angeles

16 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Greater Los Angeles Area Reading Time:  6 minutes

Mulholland Park Gate © Busition/cc-by-sa-4.0

Mulholland Park Gate © Busition/cc-by-sa-4.0

Tarzana is a suburban neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley region of Los Angeles, California. Tarzana is on the site of a former ranch owned by author Edgar Rice Burroughs. It is named after Burroughs’ fictional jungle hero, Tarzan. Tarzana, which measures 8.79 square miles (22.8 km²), is bounded on the south by Topanga State Park, on the east by Encino, on the north by Reseda and on the west by Woodland Hills. Victory Boulevard marks the northern edge of the neighborhood, Lindley Avenue the eastern, Corbin Avenue, with a jog to Oakdale Avenue, the western, and Topanga State Park the southern.   read more…

Arcadia in California, the Chinese Beverly Hills

14 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Greater Los Angeles Area Reading Time:  7 minutes

Santa Anita Park © flickr.com - Rennett Stowe/cc-by-2.0

Santa Anita Park © flickr.com – Rennett Stowe/cc-by-2.0

Arcadia is a city in Los Angeles County, California, United States, located about 13 miles (21 km) northeast of downtown Los Angeles in the San Gabriel Valley and at the base of the San Gabriel Mountains. It contains a series of adjacent parks consisting of the Santa Anita Park racetrack, the Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden, and Arcadia County Park. The city had a population of 56,364 at the 2010 census, up from 53,248 at the 2000 census. The city is named after Arcadia, Greece. Due to the settlement of numerous, wealthy Chinese who live in spacious properties in Arcadia, it is now also referred to as the “Chinese Beverly Hills“.   read more…

Kitchener in Ontario

13 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  9 minutes

Water Street © flickr.com - Allie_Caulfield/cc-by-2.0

Water Street © flickr.com – Allie_Caulfield/cc-by-2.0

Kitchener is a city in the Canadian province of Ontario, about 100 km (62 mi) west of Toronto. It is one of three cities that make up the Regional Municipality of Waterloo and is the regional seat. Kitchener was known as Berlin until a 1916 referendum changed its name. The city covers an area of 136.86 km², and had a population of 256,885 at the time of the 2021 Canadian census. The Regional Municipality of Waterloo has 575,847 people, making it the 10th-largest census metropolitan area (CMA) in Canada and the fourth-largest CMA in Ontario. Kitchener and Waterloo are considered “twin cities”, which are often referred to jointly as “Kitchener–Waterloo” (K–W), although they have separate municipal governments.   read more…

Chappaqua in Westchester County

12 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  7 minutes

Rehoboth, one of the very first concrete homes ever built in the US © Nat Postrigan/cc-by-sa-3.0

Rehoboth, one of the very first concrete homes, originally built as a barn, ever built in the US © Nat Postrigan/cc-by-sa-3.0

Chappaqua is a hamlet and census-designated place in the town of New Castle, in northern Westchester County, New York, United States. It is approximately 30 miles (50 km) north of New York City. The hamlet is served by the Chappaqua station of the Metro-North Railroad‘s Harlem Line. In the New York State Legislature it is within the New York State Assembly‘s 93rd district and the New York Senate‘s 40th district. In Congress the village is in New York’s 17th District. Chappaqua was founded by a group of Quakers in the 1730s and was the home of Horace Greeley, New-York Tribune editor and U.S. congressman. Since the late 1990s, former President Bill Clinton and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton have lived there.   read more…

Venice Beach in California

2 September 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Greater Los Angeles Area Reading Time:  5 minutes

Sunrise at Venice Beach Pier © flickr.com - Jeff Turner/cc-by-2.0

Sunrise at Venice Beach Pier © flickr.com – Jeff Turner/cc-by-2.0

Venice Beach is part of Venice, a neighborhood of the city of Los Angeles within the Westside region of Los Angeles County, California.   read more…

Belt regions of the United States

31 August 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  6 minutes

The belt regions of the United States are portions of the country that share certain characteristics. The “belt” terminology was first applied to growing regions for various crops, which often follow lines of latitude because those are more likely to have similar climates. The allusion was to a long clothing belt, as seen on a map.   read more…

Ybor City in Tampa, the Cigar Capital of the World

29 August 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  6 minutes

Centro Ybor complex with a TECO line car in front © Peter K Burian/cc-by-sa-4.0

Centro Ybor complex with a TECO line car in front © Peter K Burian/cc-by-sa-4.0

Ybor City is a historic neighborhood just northeast of downtown Tampa, Florida, United States. It was founded in the 1880s by Vicente Martinez-Ybor and other cigar manufacturers and populated by thousands of immigrants, mainly from Cuba, Spain, and Italy. For the next 50 years, workers in Ybor City’s cigar factories rolled hundreds of millions of cigars annually.   read more…

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