Friday, June 29, 2012

TNSC Turner Falls Picnic!

Readers it is HOT, HOT, HOT here in North Texas!
(Brandon, Jennifer, Patricia & Ben picnicking!)
Sunday we all loaded up and headed out to Turner Falls Park in Oklahoma.
 The Park  and falls are named after Mazeppa Thomas Turner, a farmer who settled in the area Recreational use began in or before 1868. Today, the falls are part of Turner Falls Park, a city park operated by the city of Davis, Oklahoma. The Falls cascade into a natural swimming pool, and talk about your fun from days gone by, you'll find it here!
The falls are nearly 77ft tall and make the most wonderful sound. We picnicked on the banks of the falls under the shade of some cottonwood trees. After we'd had our lunch and waited a while we jumped in the mineral springs that feed the waterfall.
 "Come on in, the water's fine!"
(Ben, Myself, and Pat!)
(Jennifer & Ben.)
The water was so cool and refreshing, we swam most of the afternoon and after a little exploring we found one of the springs that feeds the stream.
(Ben and the Spring.)
The water bubbling out of that rock face was ice cold, and felt great on our feet out in the hot summer sun. We even found a cavern you could climb to underneath the waterfall!
Later Ben and I explored the cliff face and climbed up to the "Bandits cave".
The Cave is the mid-right corner of the picture and over looks the waterfalls. 
The view from the top was incredible!
Well after the Cliffs, we went tosee Turner Fall's second biggest attraction -Collings Castle!
 (Ben, Brandon, Pat& Jennifer.)
We climbed the never ending staircase to the castle court.
(Collings Castle)
Whats kind of neat about the castle is the man who had it built Ellsworth Collings was the Dean of the college in Oklahoma. The castle was his summer home and was constructed as "a setting for fabulous parties". He was also very very short! (we must be related) seriously! In the picture above im standing in the bedroom chamber and the ceiling is only three inches higher than my head, making the room 5'7".
After the castle we moved down to the second pool deeper pool and had lots of fun on the slides then onto the look out point!
 (Ben, Myself & Brandon)
As evening settled upon is we loaded up in the car and headed over to Ardmore Oklahoma to get dinner before heading home. We ended up going to a GREAT barbeque place called "Budro's".
The food was excellent, and the service was friendly!
(Brandon, Jennifer, our waitress Desten, Me, Patricia and Ben!)
After a great dinner and cookies and ice cream for dessert we were off again headed for home.
(Ben, Patricia, Jennifer & Brandon)
All in all it was the perfect ending to a perfect birthday weekend-

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

The Mother Road

Well Readers,
Saturday after we said goodbye to Michael, Patricia and I started on the six hour drive home. We went through Joplin, and crossed over the state line and as we rolled merrily along the plains of Oklahoma I had a thought. For several trips now I've always wanted to get off the expressway at Afton Oklahoma and go see Laurel at the Famous Afton Station.
So off the freeway we went paid the $1.25 toll and got on to Route 66, as you might guess the day became instantly better!
(Patricia and a few of fabulous cars at the station!)
The bell over the door tinkled as we walked in, and we were met with a warm welcome. Laurel seemed surprised when I asked her name, and then I smiled and said "I'm Mick, from "Everyone Goes to Mick's!"  Well bust my buttons! we chatted for a minuet and then signed the doors leading into the show rooms.
(On the doors!)
Laurel and company urged us to have a look around the show rooms, and boy were we treated to some eye candy.
(The main show room of the Packard Palace.)
I quickly fell in love...
Wouldn't this 53' convertible look slick parked out front of the Casablanca?! Hey Laurel, how about a road trip to scenic Lake Diversion Texas, please?!
(Oh she was Slick!)
This 1950 "Bullet Point" Studebaker was quite a looker too! We moved into the next room where they keep the even older and more classic Packards.
After our look around we went back to the lobby and chatted some more, we even made Laurel's blog Thoughts of a Route 66 Business Owner and she was nice enough to give me Postcard to add to the growing collection at the Casablanca!
(She even signed it for me too!)
While we were exchanging good byes, Laurel being the mother road siren she is talked me and Patricia into staying on old 66 and driving "down the road" to Catoosa to see the Blue Whale. Sounds simple right? Well first we didn't realize that "down the road" meant about an hour and half drive and that 66 makes a sharp left turn in downtown Vinita Oklahoma haha! But we were off on an adventure and had a full talk of gas so onward we drove until we came upon it...
 I remember driving past this a long time ago as a small kid, but this time we actually got out of the car and got a closer look.
 We met Blaine David, the son of the people who thought up the tourist attraction that has become a Route 66 Legend. Like most on the Mother road he welcomed us warmly and regaled us with stories from its heyday.
Unfortunately these days all you can do at the while is fish, long gone are the summer days of children jumping from its tails and slides screaming with glee. Im not sure why people arent allowed to swim anymore, I didnt think to ask but none the less its a neat place to visit and was wort the drive!
Before we headed out we stopped in the tiny gift shack and I picked up another postcard, this one is a vintage one from old stock left over from the heydays.
(Doesn't it just look like the place to be?!)
Blaine signed the postcard for me too!
After a few more photo's we headed back on the road to home. Pat and I were both shocked at how close the Freeway really is to parts of 66 as we veered back on at Tulsa, and yet you'd never know that this world famous road was there.  Curiosity satisfied we were glad we took the road less traveled, it obvious had more to see and better postcards than what the Will Rodgers Freeway had to offer!

Patricia and I are both agreed someday we would like to make the entire Route 66 journey! Until then we'll treasure our day trip.