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Have Your Photo Struck at H.H. Bennett Studio in the Wisconsin Dells


7-25-18

Our last old-fashioned picture was in 2008, also on Broadway but not here. It was at Professor Samuel S. Porter’s Old-Time Portraits.

To treat ourselves for our 19th wedding anniversary that occurred the day before, we arranged to get a tintype picture at the famous H.H. Bennett Studio on Broadway in the Wisconsin Dells.  Our Photographer was David Rambow, expert in wet-plate photography since 2001. He is also Site Director for Wisconsin Historic Sites under the umbrella of the Wisconsin State Historical Society. We booked it well in advance at the H.H. Bennett website, deposit is $50. From there you can choose your package and complete your payment during your sitting.

We arrived at 10:30 for our 11 AM sitting, ready to be impressed! I had picked out clothing we had that looked sufficiently “period”, late 1800’s. My lace collar that I wore over my blouse was crocheted by my Grandma Tauchen when they were in style in the 1980’s!

Dave greeted us warmly and invited us to the very studio where Bennett made the Dells famous in the 19th and 20th centuries. This is how the backdrop looks in color.

Behind the chairs are head braces to help you hold still while the picture is taken. This is a long exposure photo.  The darker the studio, the longer the exposure. Since it was a bright sunny day, it only took 6 seconds.

 Photographer Robert Squires was there too and documented our visit. Thanks for the great photo!  He got a picture of Dave installing the prepared wet plate into the camera.  It takes 3-minutes to get it camera-ready after exposure to the chemicals. There is no going back once it is preparing!

 

Dave graciously allowed us to shoot video of getting our photo “struck” so we could show everyone how it’s done! See it below.

We had a great time doing this amazing photo, and they said Al looked like a Civil War vet. We were sent a digital copy ahead of the photo that would be sent in the mail to us.

On August 1st we received our photo in the mail.  It was varnished to help protect it from scratches.  It was beautiful! On the back was David’s info about the photo.

Also some information on how the photo was made.

I already had a frame to put the photo into that looked good with it.

Don’t pass up your opportunity to get a tintype photo taken by David at THE H.H. Bennett Studio!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Olblich Garden’s 3rd Annual GLEAM


9-15-17

Photo by Olbrich Botanical Gardens

Each year I eagerly look forward to Olbrich Botanical Garden‘s hottest new art display taking place at night. They really outdid themselves this time. Here is a map of all the art installations, more than ever this year!

For the first time, there are displays inside of the Boltz Conservatory. This display cycles through all the colors, just like the lights lining the inside of the conservatory.

Next I went outside to see those displays, the tree outside was raining light!

There is now a bar outside so you can enjoy an adult beverage while enjoying GLEAM.

 There was a surprise around every corner, I especially liked the columns on either side of the entrance to the Rose Garden, there were roses rotating around inside.

Loved the rainbow brick path.

Projected onto the path in the grand circle were messages, and butterflies flew through them.

New this year were lighted panels with a description of the displays. This one was really neat.

The star shower light made for a ghostly appearance of anyone standing under it.

This one was a little hard to take a picture, video is better.

This one was pretty too.

I am finishing my journey through the gardens, looking completely different from in the day.  As a member, it is $11 to come to GLEAM, 14 if you are not.  You can become a member at Olbrich at this time for a discount and save on future events, coupon is on GLEAM guide. I look forward to next year!

 

Columbus Redbud Days – Welcome Spring!


5-13-17

It’s the time of year Columbus has been waiting for, Redbud Days.  This annual celebration celebrates the Redbud tree, prominently displayed all over the city. Read more about the history here.   Many of the redbuds are descended from one especially hardy tree that lived over 60 years, it was on 537 West James street. It lived from the 1940’s until it had to be cut down in 2001. It’s unique genetic makeup was preserved and the tree’s “children” are all over Columbus, 48 on city property alone.

We began the day by visiting some of the great garage sales around town. Found some great buys and had fun!  Many people had redbuds in their yard, some quite large.

Back downtown for all the fun!  Every year, a new Redbud Prince and Princess are chosen in a competition by children entering the contest. The ceremony was at the Columbus Senior Center.

Each child is interviewed and a panel of Judges choose the winners.  See the ceremony here.

The kids were wonderful and all are fine representatives of Columbus. They will all go far.

Redbud Royal Court 2017

Plenty going on outside also.  The Badger Antique Auto Club had a Car Show, sponsored by Carol Valley C.P.A.  S.C.P.

Behind the car show Columbus businesses displayed their wares.

Cooley Prop and Weld, LLC

Mid-State Equipment

I smell something good!   It must be the Kiwanis Brat Fry, time for lunch!

, kids were participating in the Chalk Walk outside. Pretty good drawings!

Welcome spring at Columbus Redbud Days!

Pringle – Elk Capitol of South Dakota


4-26-17

Pringle isn’t just a potato chip, it’s the self-proclaimed Elk Capitol of South Dakota. We didn’t see any  🙂  If you do, this is what they look like. We saw them earlier in the day elsewhere.

The population is a teeming 112 people, located in Custer County.  Below is a map of the community.

This community has a bike sculpture, you don’t see those everywhere!

Also the famous Hitch Rail Bar and Restaurant. It is a popular place!

AND, there is a historic log cabin and former stagecoach stop close by.

That’s all there is!

The Crazy Horse Memorial-Tribute to All Native American Tribes


4-26-17

When you are near the Crazy Horse Memorial

you will see a sign for a low power radio station describing what is going on there.

We tuned in, you can listen here. The drive up the Avenue of the Chiefs built our anticipation for a great visit!

Here is a short film giving an overview of this monumental project.

The project was began in 1948 by Sculptor Korczak Ziolkowski and the legacy continues today by his children.

Admission is $28 for per vehicle with more than 2 people.  That fee is waived during special events where food donations are accepted instead.

The grounds are beautiful with a great view of the carving-in-progress. There is a museum and the Laughing Water Restaurant where you can enjoy Indian Taco and other traditional Native American foods. We enjoyed a great dinner there! Pictured is the taco, Tatanka (Bison) Stew, and  fry bread with wojapi (warm berry sauce) for a yummy dessert!

Begin your self-guided tour of the extensive museum at the information desk, the people there are happy to answer your questions!

There are a great many rooms to explore, you can make a day of it here! The main deck is a great viewpoint of Crazy Horse, you can see all the action when work is being done. There is also a scale model of what it will look like when complete on the deck. This model is in the display room  behind me.

This room is the first one you see after coming off the main deck near the restaurant.

In this room is a bin of rocks from the monument that you can take for free!

The scale model showing what it will look like when finished. Al and I may not live long enough though to see that day unless they get a LARGE influx of money. This is being built entirely on donations.

Here are some other highlights in the rest of the building.

Inside of the teepee.

 

This was a surprise, a signed Packer football there 🙂

Korczak display room with artifacts from the family and early carvings.

A painting of Korczak at age 73.

This display room has a great many Native American artifacts from many tribes.

More to see downstairs.

It was thrilling seeing a real one on the way there!

We were reaching the conclusion of our tour.  As we prepared to go, we saw a bus taking people out to the base of the mountain. We were a little too tired to do that today, but planning on it next time.  

Mount Rushmore, South Dakota – The Shrine of Democracy


4- 27 – 2017  Mt. Rushmore

After an unsuccessful attempt to see the monument the day before, we returned the next morning and were happy to see sunny skies! We took the fast route there from Hot Springs on the return trip. Enjoy the views on our drive from Hot Springs to Mt. Rushmore, it was one hour from there. It is located in Keystone. We arrived at 6:40 AM.

The Iron Mountain Road we took the day before led us to this historical marker about the designer of the monument.

The route up the other side from Custer was beautiful the next morning.  We saw a mountain lake reflecting the blue sky, the trees flocked in snow.

 

We made it to the top, the view just before pulling into the parking ramp.

We were among the first people here, arriving before the museum opened. Outside is a sign posting events going on there daily.

The Avenue of Flags paves the way to the Grand Terrace to view the monument close-up. in a niche on the left is a bust of Borglum.

We made it! Seeing this work of art up close is amazing. The blue sky really made it stand out.

We had the pleasure of chatting with other visitors from around the world and we helped take selfies of them with Mt. Rushmore in the background. There also are two viewing scopes, it costs 50 cents to use it.

We enjoyed exploring the museum inside too. There is so much to see there, here is a general overview. There are a series of displays in the entryway.

Holographic display

 

This is the largest main display room, the Exhibit Hall.

There is a scale model of Mt. Rushmore. Also videos and artifacts such as tools used in the building of the monument.

A large mural depicting the Presidents.

It was almost time to go, we took the elevator back up to the Grand Terrace and noticed more people arriving.

Walking back through the Avenue of Flags, we saw a beautiful white Mountain Goat on our right regarding the crowd!

It was now 9:15, we planning on leaving by 9:30 so we made a stop at the gift shop first.  Enter under the first awning on the right, you can also just see the statue of Borglum on the right. We stayed three hours.

We give Mt. Rushmore a thumbs up!  We were so happy to be here today!

Black Hills, South Dakota Adventures-Day 3


April 26, 2017

We spent the day exploring the Black Hills of South Dakota riding along in our friend’s truck. He and his wife have lived here for 20 years so they know it well!  Here is a map showing the area that we covered today.

We headed north from where they live in Hot Springs.  They gave us the grand tour of the Hot Springs area the day before.

First, we drove through Wind Cave National Park. If we come back in the summer, we can see the cave itself, April is still in the off-season.we went into the hills, there was quite a bit of snow since we were at higher elevation, we were also brushing the bottom of the rather low cloud deck.

The Elk Haven store at the Elk Haven Horse Camp, you can see the low cloud deck.

Enjoy a drive through the park, plenty of bison too!

Next, we drove through Custer State Park, at least partially. Our goal was to connect with Highway 16A, also known as Iron Mountain Road. It is 17 miles of amazing views, bridges and forest. Also tunnels carved right in the mountain!  It is the scenic route to Mt. Rushmore. Unfortunately, the low cloud deck prevented us from seeing Mt. Rushmore from the third tunnel.  I superimposed the view in the video to show you what it would have looked like.

Enjoy the ride!

The wildlife was abundant and were close enough to the road for easy viewing.  It is recommended that you stay in your vehicle so not to scare them or in the case of bison, starting a stampede!  We also saw Antelope, Elk, Bull Deer, and Prairie Dogs. Even Mountain Goats at Mt. Rushmore! So wonderful to see them in their natural environment.

After our drive through 16A, We went to Mt. Rushmore.  Admission is free, parking is not however. It was $5 for our friends’ vehicle since he is a senior, $10 normally. Unfortunately, the cloud covering the monument didn’t lift. The elevation is at 4528 ft. and we had a low cloud deck all day. This is what we saw. disappointed, we left.

We then went to the Crazyhorse Memorial.  It is about 1/2 hour away from Rushmore. This is a carving of Chief Crazy Horse  that was begun by Korczak Ziolkowski after 1947 and continued until his death on Oct. 20, 1982.  The weather was very different there, the cloud was clearing and we had sunshine!

A close up of the memorial.

You can make a day of it here. It costs $28 for a carload. The have a large museum that we explored. Also the Laughing Waters Restaurant, we enjoyed dinner here, the windows give you a great view of the monument while you are eating. The food was delicious and we hope to be back in 2018.

We all had a great day exploring the Black Hills. We hope to see more on our return visit and go back to Crazy Horse for one of their special events in the summer. As for Mt. Rushmore, we returned early the next morning and were blessed with sunny skies!