By Timothy Reynolds
Calgary, Alberta is a western Canadian city you might not have heard of if you didn’t watch the 1988 Winter Olympics, aren’t an NHL hockey fan, don’t compete on the professional rodeo circuit, or aren’t involved in the oil and gas industry, but those are just tips of this urban prairie ‘iceberg’.
Internationally famous as the gateway to the Canadian Rocky Mountains, Calgary is only ninety minutes from the wilds of Banff National Park. You don’t, however, have to leave the city to see wildlife. Calgary is home to Fish Creek Provincial Park, one of the largest urban parks in North America. Deer and coyote are common and occasionally moose, bear, or cougar wander through. It’s also a birder’s playground, ranging from Rufus Hummingbirds to American White Pelicans.
Although, Alberta beef is world famous, Calgarians love variety. All tastes get met in cool little neighborhoods like Kensington, Inglewood, and Chinatown. It’s a very family oriented city with the Calgary Zoo (hosting pandas until 2023), Telus Spark Science Centre, Heritage Park Historical Village, Inglewood Bird Sanctuary, Calgary Tower … continue reading in the Winter 2018 issue.
By Heather Roulo
As the largest city in the Pacific Northwest, Seattle first began as a logging town. During the Klondike Gold Rush, it became the gateway to Alaska, prospering on trade and shipbuilding. During World War II, Boeing’s increased importance gave Seattle the nickname Jet City.
Since then, Seattle’s visibility has increased through movies, the appeal of grunge music, and the rise of the tech industry with companies such as Microsoft, Amazon, and Starbucks. The city has thrived.
A stay at any hotel in the downtown core is an easy walk to the famous Pike Place Market, one of the oldest continuous public farmers’ markets in the country. Pick up fresh flowers and salmon for dinner or continue to the waterfront to see otters play at the Seattle Aquarium.
From a seat on the iconic Seattle Great Wheel … continue reading in the Fall 2018 issue.
Half Moon Bay
By Michele Roger
Many travelers book accommodations listed as San Francisco while, in actuality, the hotels are located up to thirty or forty-five minutes outside of the city. Host to over one hundred unique conferences, San Francisco chains host 16.9 million tourists each year.
We all love conferences thanks to networking, motivational lectures, and the general buzz we all get from gathering in one place with like-minded people. They give me the sense that I may be crazy, but I’m not alone.
itting with friends, I had not seen in over a year and drinking coffee was great. Let’s face it, I don’t want to spend my entire weekend eating hotel dining room food. That’s the beauty of Half Moon Bay. With a fifteen minute drive from my hotel, my friends and I were able to escape the scheduled events for a short time, enjoy lunch, … continue reading in the Summer issue for 2018.
Colorado Springs, CO
By Emerian Rich
I was born in Colorado Springs, but all I really knew about it was they have really cool rock formations, an Olympic Training Center, and my grandparent’s house, which was the happiest place on earth.
Last summer when I went back for a family reunion, I learned so much more. For instance, did you know that Colorado Springs earned the title “Little London” in the 1800’s because it was funded by mostly British investors, and at the time, five out of six residents in the town were British? Did you also know that the founder, General William Jackson Palmer, built a real life castle there in 1871?
His statue “The Man on the Horse” still sits in the middle of town. Coming through Colorado as a railroad surveyor, he could never forget the majestic scenery he found there, and after the railroad was complete, he settled in the area. He spent approximately …continue reading in the Summer issue for 2018.
The Sound of the Sea
by Elliot Thorpe
The sea has intrigued and called to humanity for centuries, and we take for granted now that the planet has been mapped to the nearest millimeter. Yet, take the idea, if you can, of standing in the relentless surf, looking toward the flat, wide horizon. Distant gulls swoop across the sky reaching even further still, and you wonder what it is about the oceans that tempts us so.
From such a rich canvas, we have seen much to fire our imaginations. From beautifully, emotive art such as Hokusai’s The Great Wave or Kensett’s tranquil Sunset to stories that bring to life the very sea itself as well as those who live on it, in it, or under it Hornblower, Moby Dick, and Ariel are three prime examples. Music, too, entices a … continue reading in the Summer 2018 issue.
Octopus is Coolest
by Dianna Kersey
From the Atlantic Pygmy Octopus to the fabled Kraken, octopuses have been entrenched in our culture as some of the coolest sea creatures to swim in our oceans and even to crawl on our lands.
Humans are simply fascinated by these weird enigmas. Who can resist H.P. Lovecraft’s famous Cthulhu monsters with their deadly tentacles? Or the dozens of movies from all over the globe featuring these suction cupped beasts? Let’s face it, we’re hooked. There are countless reasons why octopus are the coolest creatures in the sea, but let’s hit my top three.
Prison Breaks Nothing can keep these amazing eight-legged cephalopods in one place. It takes a very special type of tank to enclose these guys in captivity for very long. Marine biologists have … continue reading in the Summer 2018 issue.
by Kay Tracy
When you think of spring, what jumps into your head? For me, in addition to new plants and flowers, it’s the birds.
Even in the smallest patio garden one can find avian visitors. All you have to do is invite them. Food and water will do the trick. For some birds that is as simple as having plants that bloom. For others, try an invitation to dine with you.
Hummingbirds, unless you live near the Arctic Circle, will join you for an offering of sugar water. Colorful finches abound when seeds are on the menu. Do avoid bread. Look to quality mixed seeds for wild birds. You can use some of the resources listed at the end to help you determine what your goal with birds might be.
Add a source of water, like a glazed planting pot base or even an old clean dented frying pan, and you will delight them not only with a drink of water, but a spot for bathing. With the urbanization of the world, our small creatures have… continue reading in the Spring 2018 issue.
By Sumiko Saulson
Berkeley is a progressive college town, well known for its commitment to arts, culture, and the ecology. It’s the first US city to create accessible spaces and curbside cutouts for the mobility impaired back in the seventies.
Farmer’s markets, pro-cyclist events like Sunday Streets Berkeley, plentiful bicycle lanes, and automobile-free zones, community gardens, composting, recycling centers, urban farming, and parks dedicated to preserving native wildlife are part of how Berkeley works towards a greener planet.
University of California Berkeley is home to a beautifully manicured thirty-four acre botanical garden featuring foot bridges, relaxing streams, lush flora, and aromatic flowers from around the globe. It’s Student Organic Garden at the corner of Walnut and Virginia Streets, encourages urban farmers to grow healthy, earth-friendly fresh foods…continue reading in the Spring 2018 issue.
SCRAP, San Francisco
By Emerian Rich
SCRAP is an awesome place for crafters, teachers, and makers. Essentially an art and crafts thrift store, this nonprofit is a great place to both donate and shop.
Calling themselves “a source for the resourceful”, SCRAP is a creative re-use center, material depot, and workshop space founded in 1973. Breathing new life into old objects, SCRAP reduces waste by diverting over 200 tons of materials heading to landfill every year. For those looking for a learning opportunity, SCRAP offers classes and workshops. Some are regular drop-in events, while others require registration beforehand.
Located at 801 Toland Street, San Francisco, this is a creators dream. Supplies are inexpensive and range from fabric and home decorating items to paper, craft supplies, crayons, and books. Educators will love…continue reading in the Winter issue for 2017.
By Leslie Light
Rodeo, California was not my first choice to live in. It’s a small town on the north-western edge of the San Francisco Bay Area. It isn’t tony, or upscale, or even hipster. What it is, however, is easy. Easy to get to and out of. Easy to stay in and make a quiet home. We’ve been here five years and will probably stay five more.
Rodeo is bisected by the I-80 freeway. The built up part of town can be divided into three areas: Old, Mid-Century, and New. Most of the Rodeo town limits is open space where cows graze, and there is rumored to be an old military installation somewhere. Regardless of where you are, you can see a field of grass.
In the “old” part of town are cute three and four bedroom houses built before WWII. Sitting porches with views of rose bushes are the primary look and feel. Many have back decks have a view of San Pablo Bay. Most of the Mid-Century houses were built for…continue reading in the Winter issue for 2017.