Brownstones in New York City

3 December 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Architecture, Living, Working, Building, New York City Reading Time:  11 minutes

Brownstones in Park Slope © Mikeruggy/cc-by-sa-4.0

Brownstones in Park Slope © Mikeruggy/cc-by-sa-4.0

Brownstone is a brown TriassicJurassic sandstone that was historically a popular building material. The term is also used in the United States and Canada to refer to a townhouse clad in this or any other aesthetically similar material. Brownstone, also known as freestone because it can be cut freely in any direction, was used by early Pennsylvanian Quakers to construct stone mills and mill houses. In central Pennsylvania, some 1700s-era structures survive, including a residence known as the Quaker Mill House.   read more…

Hialeah in Florida

30 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Miami / South Florida Reading Time:  4 minutes

Taco Bell © flickr.com - Phillip Pessar/cc-by-2.0

Taco Bell © flickr.com – Phillip Pessar/cc-by-2.0

Hialeah is a city in Miami-Dade County, Florida. With a population of 223,109 as of the 2020 census, Hialeah is the sixth-largest city in Florida. It is the second largest city by population in the Miami metropolitan area, which was home to an estimated 6,198,782 people at the 2018 census. It is located west-northwest of Miami, and is one of a few places in the county—others being Homestead, Miami Beach, Surfside, Bal Harbour, Sunny Isles Beach, and Golden Beach—to have its own street grid numbered separately from the rest of the county (which is otherwise based on Miami Avenue at Flagler Street in Downtown Miami, the county seat).   read more…

Arlington Heights in Illinois

29 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  12 minutes

Harmony Park in Downtown © panoramio.com - bogdanstepniak/cc-by-3.0

Harmony Park in Downtown © panoramio.com – bogdanstepniak/cc-by-3.0

Arlington Heights is a municipality in Cook County with a small portion in Lake County in the U.S. state of Illinois. A suburb of Chicago, it lies about 25 miles (40 km) northwest of the city’s downtown. Per the 2020 Census, the population was 77,676. Per the 2010 Census, it is the most populous community in the United States that is incorporated as a “village”, and is the 13th most populous municipality in Illinois, although it is not far ahead of its nearby Illinois neighboring villages of Schaumburg and adjacent Palatine. Arlington Heights is known for the former Arlington Park Race Track, home of the Arlington Million, a Breeders’ Cup qualifying event; it also hosted the Breeders’ Cup World Thoroughbred Championships in 2002. The village is also home to the Arlington Heights Memorial Library, which has one of the largest collections of books in the state.   read more…

Pleasanton in California

28 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, San Francisco Bay Area Reading Time:  7 minutes

© Michael C. Berch/cc-by-sa-2.5

© Michael C. Berch/cc-by-sa-2.5

Pleasanton is a city in Alameda County, California, United States. Located in the Amador Valley, it is a suburb in the East Bay region of the San Francisco Bay Area. The population was 79,871 at the 2020 census. In 2005 and 2007, Pleasanton was ranked the wealthiest middle-sized city in the United States by the Census Bureau. Pleasanton is home to the headquarters of Safeway, Workday, Ellie Mae, Roche Molecular Diagnostics, Blackhawk Network Holdings, and Veeva Systems. Other major employers include Kaiser Permanente, Oracle and Macy’s. Although Oakland is the Alameda County seat, a few county offices are located in Pleasanton. The Alameda County Fairgrounds are located in Pleasanton, where the county fair is held during the last week of June and the first week of July. Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park is located on the west side of town.   read more…

Billionaires’ Row in Manhattan

27 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General, Architecture, New York City Reading Time:  9 minutes

Part of Billionaires' Row and Central Park (background) © Itrytohelp32/cc-by-sa-4.0

Part of Billionaires’ Row and Central Park (background) © Itrytohelp32/cc-by-sa-4.0

Billionaires’ Row is a set of ultra-luxury residential skyscrapers, constructed or in development, that are arrayed roughly along the southern end of Central Park in Manhattan, New York City. Several of these buildings are in the supertall category, taller than 1,000 feet (300 m), and are among the tallest buildings in the world. Since most of these pencil towers are on 57th Street, the term has been used to refer to the street itself as well.   read more…

Glendale in Arizona

22 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  8 minutes

Glendale Glitters around Christmas © Gage Skidmore/cc-by-sa-3.0

Glendale Glitters around Christmas © Gage Skidmore/cc-by-sa-3.0

Glendale is a city in Maricopa County, Arizona, United States, located approximately 9 miles (14 km) northwest of Downtown Phoenix. It hasd a population of 248,325. In the late 1800s the area that is now Glendale was all desert. William John Murphy, a native of New Hartford, New York, who resided in the town of Flagstaff in what was then the territory of Arizona, was in charge of building the 40-mile-long (64 km) Arizona Canal from Granite Reef to New River for the Arizona Canal Company. In 1885, he completed the canal, which would bring water to the desert land. Murphy was deep in debt, since he had agreed to be paid in Arizona Canal Company stock and bonds and land instead of cash.   read more…

Toronto in Ontario

18 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  28 minutes

Toronto skyline from Snake Island © Jchmrt/cc-by-sa-4.0

Toronto skyline from Snake Island © Jchmrt/cc-by-sa-4.0

Toronto is the capital city of the Canadian province of Ontario. With a recorded population of 2,794,356 in 2021, it is the most populous city in Canada and the fourth most populous city in North America. The city is the anchor of the Golden Horseshoe, an urban agglomeration of 9,765,188 people (as of 2021) surrounding the western end of Lake Ontario, while the Greater Toronto Area proper had a 2021 population of 6,712,341. Toronto is an international centre of business, finance, arts, sports and culture, and is recognized as one of the most multicultural and cosmopolitan cities in the world.   read more…

Avenue of the Americas in New York City

15 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  9 minutes

Historic Ladies' Mile shopping district © Beyond My Ken/cc-by-sa-4.0

Historic Ladies’ Mile shopping district © Beyond My Ken/cc-by-sa-4.0

Sixth Avenue – also known as Avenue of the Americas, although this name is seldom used by New Yorkers – is a major thoroughfare in New York City‘s borough of Manhattan, on which traffic runs northbound, or “uptown”. It is commercial for much of its length. Sixth Avenue begins four blocks below Canal Street, at Franklin Street in TriBeCa, where the northbound Church Street divides into Sixth Avenue to the left and the local continuation of Church Street to the right, which then ends at Canal Street. From this beginning, Sixth Avenue traverses SoHo and Greenwich Village, roughly divides Chelsea from the Flatiron District and NoMad, passes through the Garment District and skirts the edge of the Theater District while passing through Midtown Manhattan. Sixth Avenue’s northern end is at Central Park South, adjacent to the Artists’ Gate entrance to Central Park via Center Drive. Historically, Sixth Avenue was also the name of the road that continued north of Central Park, but that segment was renamed Lenox Avenue in 1887 and co-named Malcolm X Boulevard in 1987.   read more…

Mackinac Island in Michigan

11 November 2022 | Author/Destination: | Rubric: General Reading Time:  15 minutes

Main Street © n8huckins/cc-by-sa-4.0

Main Street © n8huckins/cc-by-sa-4.0

Mackinac Island is an island and resort area, covering 4.35 square miles (11.3 km²) in land area, in the U.S. state of Michigan. The name of the island in Odawa is Michilimackinac and “Mitchimakinak” in Ojibwemowin meaning “Big Turtle”. It is located in Lake Huron, at the eastern end of the Straits of Mackinac, between the state’s Upper and Lower Peninsulas. The island was long home to an Odawa settlement and previous indigenous cultures before European colonization began in the 17th century. It was a strategic center of the fur trade around the Great Lakes. Based on a former trading post, Fort Mackinac was constructed on the island by the British during the American Revolutionary War. It was the site of two battles during the War of 1812 before the northern border was settled and the US gained this island in its territory. In the late 19th century, Mackinac Island became a popular tourist attraction and summer colony. Many of the structures on the island have undergone extensive historical preservation and restoration. Because of its historic significance, the entire island is listed as a National Historic Landmark. It is well known for numerous cultural events; a wide variety of architectural styles, including the Victorian Grand Hotel; and its ban on almost all motor vehicles, with exceptions only for city emergency vehicles (ambulance, police cars and fire trucks), city service vehicles and snowmobiles in winter. More than 80 percent of the island is preserved as Mackinac Island State Park. In 2022, Travel + Leisure named Mackinac Island the best island in the continental U.S. to visit.   read more…

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