Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Scranton Municipal Building

  This view of the Scranton municipal building shows off its old world charm.  With that architecture, the stonework, and once again a gray, cloudy sky, I can easily imagine myself back in England.  Someone once said to me in commenting about English weather that they could not understand why England was even inhabited.  One could easily say the same about Northeastern Pennsylvania.  According to one meteorologist from the area, this is the fourth most cloudy region of the country.  With the long, cold, and gray winter just getting started, can you say, "Seasonal Affective Disorder?"

Monday, November 29, 2010

Mural Art

Since murals are pictures on walls, ceilings and other fixed surfaces,  it can be considered an art form that dates all the way back to our hairy cave-dwelling ancestors from the stone age.  A caveman might be able to comprehend the Radisson Lackawanna Station Hotel as a big and luxurious cave, but what would he make of an electric street car?    

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Hot Yoga in Scranton

  Hot Yoga!  If you know little about yoga you might be thinking tight outfits and sexy poses.  Or, you might think it has something to do with the temperature on the thermometer at the top of the sign.  Unlikely, given it was actually 35 degrees out.  But hot yoga, formally known as Bikram Yoga, is a form practiced in a hot environment that is ideally 105 degrees.  The idea behind the heat is to increase flexibility and reduce stress, tension and injury.  I imagine a lot of cleansing through sweating also takes place during the typical 90 minute session.  
  After a session of hot yoga at Scranton's Steamtown Hot Yoga, thirsty and hungry practitioners can indulge in good fruit.  Much better than bad fruit.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Tattoo Art

  I don't have anything against tattoo art, but I gotta say I would not want the picture on the poster imbedded in my skin for the rest of my life.   For anyone interested in skewering a body part, Marc's Tattooing also handles body piercing.  And nervous or squeamish  types can rest easy.  All employees of Marc's have Red Cross first aid and bloodborne pathogen certification!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Christmas Lights are Going Up!

To a lot of people Black Friday means fighting for parking spaces at the mall, and banging elbows and shopping carts with crazed shoppers.  But I think it is a good day to get out and enjoy the beauty of the season and the Christmas lights that are now in full night bloom.  Besides, there is still plenty of time before Christmas to indulge in commercial madness!

Thursday, November 25, 2010


Today's Thanksgiving still life photo is courtesy of guest photographer, Pixel Dudette (aka the Wife).

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Paul Kanjorski Pedestrian Bridge

The Paul Kanjorski Pedestrian Bridge spans Nay Aug Gorge above Roaring Brook.  On this particular day the brook was doing more whispering than roaring, but it is a radically different scene when heavy rains fall.  I hope to publish a photo of a roaring Roaring Brook when the opportunity arises  (pun intended).  The Nay Aug Gorge has a notorious reputation as a very popular and very illegal swimming hole.  Swimming has been prohibited for safety reasons, and accidents in the gorge are not uncommon with lots of injuries due to falls.  According to the Scranton Times-Tribune there have been forty deaths in Nay Aug Gorge since 1890.  Most of the deaths were the result of drowning.  Nature can be a mean Mother when not given the proper respect.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Trail to Nay Aug Gorge

Nay Aug Gorge is a National Natural Landmark.  The trail pictured here leads down to the Paul Kanjorski Pedestrian Bridge which crosses the gorge.  Congressman Kanjorski has described Nay Aug Park as "the jewel of the city of Scranton," and he's right.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Autumn Tradition

Autumn in Northeastern Pennsylvania means lots of leaves, and lots and lots of raking.  And lots of fun!

Friday, November 19, 2010

David Wenzel Treehouse View #3

This view of the David Wenzel Treehouse gives a good look at how it is perched above the edge of the gorge.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

David Wenzel Treehouse View #2

The David Wenzel Treehouse is perched above the edge of a 150' gorge.  This view of the treehouse is taken from a trail that runs right beneath it and parallels the gorge.  

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

David Wenzel Treehouse in Nay Aug Park

David Wenzel served as the 27th mayor of Scranton from 1986 - 1990.  The treehouse was built by Forever Young Treehouses, Inc, as part of a project to construct a memorable and universally accessible treehouse in every state.  Their primary goal is to make certain the treehouses can be enjoyed by children and young adults with special needs.  More information on this noble project can be found at www.treehouses.org

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Patriotic in the Poconos

Outside of Scranton near the town of White Haven is a small house with bold paint.  Patriotism or just attention seeking behavior?  Whatever the motivation behind it, I appreciate it for being unique and unusual.  The building is a stark contrast to the rural scenery, and when you come around the bend and first see the house it jumps out of the scenery, grabs you by the eyeballs, and demands your attention.  

Monday, November 15, 2010

Lincoln Memorial, Scranton Version

Scranton has its own version of a Lincoln Memorial in Nay Aug Park.  O.K., so it kinda pales in comparison to the one in Washington, D.C.  But after all, isn't having a small and modest memorial more consistent with being the president featured on the penny?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Autumn Reflection #2

While plenty of color can be seen in the Pocono Mountains even with the trees stripped of their leaves, I think this grainy black and white shot of bare trees reflecting in the pond does better at capturing the mood of autumn as it foreshadows the winter ahead.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Autumn Reflection

The trees in the Pocono Mountains in the middle of November may already be stripped bare of leaves, but there is still plenty of color to be found.  

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Doormen

These fine fellows were serving as volunteer doormen for a state government office fundraising event.    The sign on the door would suggest to me that the flanking scarecrows are authorized personnel.  Seasonal employees, most likely.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Looking for the Great Pumpkin

Pumpkin patches in Pennsylvania are perfectly plentiful!  I don't know if there is a special reason behind it, but this year we have seen a greater number of white pumpkins as can be seen here in this photo captured by a Canon G11 using color accent.  Albino pumpkins come in a number of varieties such as the Lumina, Cotton Candy and Baby Boo, and seeds can easily be purchased.    White pumpkins are especially good for painting.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Autumn On the Mountain

Half of the time when it is relatively nice weather in the valley, it will be rainy, cloudy or foggy up in the mountains outside of Scranton.  A fifteen minute drive outside of the city can have you feeling like you are a hundred miles away from metropolitan life.  An upside of the frequent gray and damp weather is a lush taste for the eyeballs with the H2O enriched Autumn tones.  

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Autumn Colors in the Gorge

Nay Aug Park is a great location for hiking right in the city and along the western edge of the Pocono Mountains.  This scene of the falls next to the gorge trail captures the typical autumn afternoon lighting and colors on a typically cloudy Northeastern Pennsylvania day.  

Friday, November 5, 2010

The Doorway of the Soul

The partially hidden caption in the bottom pane says "The Doorway of the Soul."  Of course, thoughtful art can convey different meaning to different people, but since this collage of sculpture and pictures is located on the campus of the University of Scranton, a Jesuit institution, I interpret it as knowledge is the doorway to the soul.   A more devout viewer might interpret it as knowledge of God is the doorway of the soul.  Lead Zeppelin fans probably see a  stairway to heaven.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Color on Campus

This colorful scene was shot on the University of Scranton campus.  The mountainsides surrounding the Lackawanna Valley are already brown, but color will linger in the lower elevations for an extra two or three weeks.  It is amazing how much difference an elevation change of just 1,000 feet or so can make.  Winter will hit next door in the Pocono Mountains close to a month earlier than its arrival in Scranton, and the snow, ice and cold will linger about a month longer at those higher elevations.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Autumn Mailbox

I love to cruise the backroads of the Pocono Mountains on my motorcycle.  There are plenty of fun and beautifully scenic roads and frequent visual delights and surprises.  Ninety-nine percent of mailboxes are so bland and boring, but this one meets my criteria for a visual delight.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Electric Trolley Car

Electric Trolley cars still roll in Scranton!  Keeping some of the historic trolley cars in operation contributes to The Electric City's maintaining a connection to its heritage and distinctive identity.  
Click here to view thumbnails for all participants