Knoxville in Tennessee

18 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  10 minutes

South Gay Street © Brian Stansberry/cc-by-3.0

South Gay Street © Brian Stansberry/cc-by-3.0

Knoxville is a city in and the county seat of Knox County in the U.S. state of Tennessee. As of the 2020 United States census, Knoxville’s population was 190,740, making it the largest city in the East Tennessee Grand Division and the state’s third largest city after Nashville and Memphis. Knoxville is the principal city of the Knoxville Metropolitan Statistical Area, which had an estimated population of 869,046 in 2019. Knoxville is the home of the flagship campus of the University of Tennessee, whose sports teams, the Tennessee Volunteers, are popular in the surrounding area. Knoxville is also home to the headquarters of the Tennessee Valley Authority, the Tennessee Supreme Court‘s courthouse for East Tennessee, and the corporate headquarters of several national and regional companies. As one of the largest cities in the Appalachian region, Knoxville has positioned itself in recent years as a repository of Appalachian culture and is one of the gateways to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.   read more…

Hollywood in Florida

11 May 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Miami / South Florida Reading Time:  5 minutes

Boardwalk © Tamanoeconomico/cc-by-sa-4.0

Boardwalk © Tamanoeconomico/cc-by-sa-4.0

Hollywood is a city in southern Broward County, Florida, United States, located between Fort Lauderdale and Miami. As of July 1, 2019, Hollywood had a population of 154,817. Founded in 1925, the city grew rapidly in the 1950s and 1960s, and is now the 12th-largest city in Florida. Hollywood is a principal city of the Miami metropolitan area, which was home to an estimated 6,012,331 people at the 2015 census. The average temperature is between 68 and 83 °F (20 and 28 °C). Hollywood is a relatively small city that retains an old laid-back Florida feel to it compared to the larger cities in the area.   read more…

Indio in the Coachella Valley

30 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  17 minutes

Coachella 2018 © flickr.com - Raph_PH/cc-by-2.0

Coachella 2018 © flickr.com – Raph_PH/cc-by-2.0

Indio (Spanish for “Indian”) is a city in Riverside County, California, United States, in the Coachella Valley of Southern California‘s Colorado Desert region. It lies 23 miles (37 km) east of Palm Springs, 75 miles (121 km) east of Riverside, 127 miles (204 km) east of Los Angeles, 148 miles (238 km) northeast of San Diego, and 250 miles (402 km) west of Phoenix. The population was 89,137 in the 2020 United States Census, up from 76,036 at the 2010 census, an increase of 17%. Indio is the most populous city in the Coachella Valley, and was formerly referred to as the Hub of the Valley after a Chamber of Commerce slogan used in the 1970s. It was later nicknamed the City of Festivals, a reference to the numerous cultural events held in the city, most notably the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival.   read more…

Oak Bluffs in Massachusetts

29 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  8 minutes

© flickr.com - Michele Schaffer/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Michele Schaffer/cc-by-2.0

Oak Bluffs is a town located on the island of Martha’s Vineyard in Dukes County, Massachusetts, United States. The population was 5,341 at the 2020 United States Census. It is one of the island’s principal points of arrival for summer tourists, and is noted for its “gingerbread cottages” and other well-preserved mid- to late-nineteenth-century buildings. The town has been a historically important center of African American culture since the eighteenth century.   read more…

Smorgasburg in New York City

27 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, New York City Reading Time:  4 minutes

Dumbo © flickr.com - dumbonyc/cc-by-sa-2.0

Dumbo © flickr.com – dumbonyc/cc-by-sa-2.0

Smorgasburg is an open-air food market that originated in Williamsburg, Brooklyn next to the East River. It takes place every Saturday in an empty lot. The name Smorgasburg is a portmanteau of “Smörgåsbord” and “Williamsburg”. Dozens of vendors sell their food and wares. It initially was started in 2011, by Jonathan Butler and Eric Demby as an offshoot of Brooklyn Flea.   read more…

Port Arthur in Texas

18 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  6 minutes

Rose Hill © Michael Reed/cc-by-sa-3.0

Rose Hill © Michael Reed/cc-by-sa-3.0

Port Arthur is a city in Jefferson County within the Beaumont–Port Arthur metropolitan area of the U.S. state of Texas. A small, uninhabited portion extends into Orange County; it is 90 mi (140 km) east of Houston. The largest oil refinery in the United States, the Motiva Refinery, is located in Port Arthur. Port Arthur is vulnerable to hurricanes and extensive damage to the city has been caused several times. Port Arthur’s Museum of the Gulf Coast is recognized as the area’s definitive collection of items and displays for figures from Port Arthur and the surrounding communities.   read more…

Turtle Bay in Manhattan

11 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, New York City Reading Time:  9 minutes

Tudor City © flickr.com - Tony Hisgett/cc-by-2.0

Tudor City © flickr.com – Tony Hisgett/cc-by-2.0

Turtle Bay is a neighborhood in New York City, on the east side of Midtown Manhattan. It extends from roughly 43rd Street to 53rd Streets, and eastward from Lexington Avenue to the East River‘s western branch (facing Roosevelt Island). The neighborhood is the site of the headquarters of the United Nations and the Chrysler Building. The Tudor City apartment complex is to the south of Turtle Bay. Turtle Bay is named after a former cove of the East River. The neighborhood was originally settled as a Dutch farm in the 17th century, and was subsequently developed with tenements, power plants, and slaughterhouses in the 19th century. These industrial structures were largely demolished in the 1940s and 1950s to make way for the United Nations headquarters. Today, Turtle Bay contains multiple missions and consulates to the nearby United Nations headquarters.   read more…

Borscht Belt or Jewish Alps in Upstate New York

4 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Hotels Reading Time:  11 minutes

Brickman's pool area in 1977 © Library of Congress - John Margolie

Brickman’s pool area in 1977 © Library of Congress – John Margolie

Borscht Belt, or Jewish Alps, is a colloquial term for the mostly defunct summer resorts of the Catskill Mountains in parts of Sullivan, Orange and Ulster counties in Upstate New York, United States. A source interviewed by Time magazine stated that the visits to the area by Jewish families was already underway “as early as the 1890s … Tannersville … was ‘a great resort of our Israelite brethren’…from the 1920s on [there were] hundreds of hotels”. A 2019 review of the history is more specific: “in its heyday, as many as 500 resorts catered to guests of various incomes”. These resorts, but also the bungalow colonies, were a popular vacation spot for New York City Jews from the 1920s through the 1960s. By the late 1950s, many began closing, with most gone by the 1970s, but some major resorts continued to operate, a few into the 1990s. Grossinger’s Catskill Resort Hotel closed in 1986 and the Concord Resort Hotel struggled to stay open until 1998.   read more…

Distillery District in Toronto

1 April 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Living, Working, Building Reading Time:  12 minutes

© flickr.com - mark.watmough/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – mark.watmough/cc-by-2.0

The Distillery District is a commercial and residential district in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Located east of downtown, it contains numerous cafés, restaurants, and shops housed within heritage buildings of the former Gooderham and Worts Distillery. The 13 acres (5.3 ha) district comprises more than forty heritage buildings and ten streets, and is the largest collection of Victorian-era industrial architecture in North America. The district was designated a National Historic Site of Canada in 1988. The Toronto Christmas Market has been an annual outdoor tradition run within the Distillery District since 2010. The market includes “Santa’s house”, an Indigo pop-up shop, pet photos with Santa, a Ferris wheel and themed entertainment each day. There are food vendors and dining locations that are popular tourist attractions. The 2020 edition of the event was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic in Toronto. The event returned for its 2021 edition from November 19 to December 31 2021 under the new moniker “The Distillery Winter Village”.   read more…

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