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Viewing Archive: November 2010



Combining the Chronicles of Narnia with Outer Space

By Wayne Lazarus on November 15th, 2010

Categories: Linda's Travel Articles

Do you know a child with an interest in science? Or one for whom you’d like to spark such an interest? One of the best places to do that is the U. S. Space and Rocket Center Museum in Huntsville, Alabama.

EnterpriseCreated in 1970 to show the world Alabama and Huntsville’s part in our country’s space program, the center is the home of Space Camp, Space Academy and Advanced Space Academy for kids from the age of nine to 18. (Each camp lasts six days.) But year round, the museum has fascinating exhibits that illustrate science in everyday life for children and teens (and adults.)

Through January 5, the museum is hosting The Chronicles of Narnia, presented by Walt Disney World, Walden Media and Exhibitgroup/Gilspur. This exhibit packs archeology, geography, engineering and ecology into what you may have thought of as simply a children’s movied based on the works of C.S. Lewis. Visitors to the exhibit have the opportunity to build an arch, fire a catapult and create a unique creature similar to the ones in the film.

SRC8657EsmStarting January 29, the museum will open CSI, the Experience. Developed by the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History with support from CBS Consumer Products, the cast and crew of the television show, the American Academy of Forensic Sciences and the National Science Foundation, this exhibit invites visitors to utilize science to solve three different mysteries. Each includes a crime scene, evidence and multiple stations to analyze the clues.

The U. S. Space and Rocket Center Museum has plenty of permanent exhibits to illustrate the Space Shuttle Program, the Apollo Missions and the future of our space program to young and old, including the Mars Mission (with a Mars Climbing Wall,) the Apollo Cockpit Trainer and G-force accelerator.

It is open daily from 9-5, seven days a week and various ticket packages include the IMAX theater.

Photos courtesy U.S. Space and Rocket Center Museum. Used with permission.

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St. Joseph, Missouri – where memories are made and kept in a museum

By Wayne Lazarus on November 9th, 2010

Categories: Linda's Travel Articles

St. Joseph calls itself a Western town, the home of the Pony Express and the end of Jesse James. But it could also call itself a town where memories are made and many have found their way into a local museum. There are 13 museums here. Below are just a few of the highlights:

mammothFur trader Joseph Robidoux founded the town of St. Joseph in 1843 and built a series of connected houses, like modern apartments, so that newcomers would have a place to live. (He later lived there himself.) Some are still standing and are now a museum that showcases the history of the early town, called Robidoux Row. Read the rest of this entry »

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Beaches, Boudin and Birding along the Creole Nature Trail

By Wayne Lazarus on November 2nd, 2010

Categories: Linda's Travel Articles

One of the most unique cultures in the United States if found inna — with its mix of Old South, Creole and Cajun heritage. The 180-mile Creole Nature Trail, an All American Road in the Southwest part of the state, provides a picturesque window of the land, the wildlife and the food.

P1030200This outdoorsman’s paradise has fishing, duck-hunting and one of the best bird-watching ares in the country. If that’s not your idea of relaxation, there are also 23 miles of the Gulf Coast’s beautiful white beaches. I visited after the 2010 BP spill and the beaches are pristine and the seafood succulent. Don’t be shy about stopping at little non-descript stores and asking about their boudin. (PronouncedĀ  boo-dan.) Many have been making this traditional sausage-like mixture of cooked meat (pork, shrimp, crawfish or other) and seasonings from an old family recipe for decades. Boudin balls are deep fried — and can be addictive.P1030194

The Creole Nature Trail runs along both sides of Lake Calcasieu (pronounced cal-ca-shoo) through cow pastures, coastal prairies, rice and soybean fields, further south into the marshes. You’re liable to catch a parade of crabs crossing the road, alligators sunning beside the canals and maybe even Sandhill Cranes on their way south. Those rice fields, by the way, double as crawfish farms after the rice is harvested.

P1030199There are a number of places to get out of the car and get a closer look. The Sabine National Wildlife Refuge, which reaches the 30 or so miles to Texas, has a one-and-a-half mile boardwalk stretching into the marsh. Look for nutria, coons and otter. The Peveto Woods Bird and Butterfly Sanctuary is visited annually by two million migratory birds. Within the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge is the highest density of nesting alligators in the country, as well as hundred of thousands of ducks, geese, coots and wading birds. The Pintail Wildlife Drive has a new quarter-mile boardwalk from which to view the nearly 300 species of birds that come through here annually.

You can download an MP3 tour for your drive or look for an app from your smart phone provider. Later this year handheld GPS-coordinated units with audio and video will be available for rent at the Lake Charles Visitors Center. Make your reservations in Lake Charles orĀ  Sulphur, Louisiana.


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