Colorful photos of the Old Town Fall Festival!

A covered wagon in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park is decorated with fall colors in October.
A covered wagon in Old Town San Diego State Historic Park is decorated with autumn colors.

After walking a bit downtown, I took the trolley up to Old Town to enjoy the colorful Fall Festival!

I never tire of the wonderful events that can be found almost every weekend at Old Town San Diego State Historic Park!

Kids at the Old Town Fall Festival learn to make art with colored beans!
Kids at the Old Town Fall Festival learn to make art with colored beans!
Later in the day folks at this table would demonstrate how to make applesauce.
Later in the day folks at this table would demonstrate how to make applesauce.
Making environmentally friendly bird feeders using corn cobs, peanut butter and seeds.
Making environmentally friendly bird feeders using corn cobs, peanut butter and seeds.
Folks young and old were trying their hand at making corn husk dolls.
Folks young and old were trying their hand at making corn husk dolls.
Lady with old-fashioned parasol walks through Old Town San Diego State Historic Park's Plaza de las Armas.
Lady with old-fashioned parasol walks through Old Town San Diego State Historic Park’s central Plaza de las Armas.
Colorful leaves and a bountiful harvest frame the Welcome in an Old Town shop window.
Colorful leaves and a bountiful harvest frame the Welcome in an Old Town shop window.
A smiling señorita walks near some pumpkins.
A smiling señorita walks near some pumpkins.
An elaborate Día de los Muertos decoration standing beside the Fiesta de Reyes stage is bright with autumn colors.
An elaborate Día de los Muertos decoration standing beside the Fiesta de Reyes stage is bright with fall colors.
A flower-filled wheelbarrow in front of Seeley Stable.
A flower-filled wheelbarrow in front of Seeley Stable.
Ceramic pumpkins line shelves at an outdoor Old Town marketplace.
Ceramic pumpkins line shelves at an outdoor Old Town marketplace.
Ladies work on a quilt inside the Threads of the Past Living History Activity Center.
Ladies work on a quilt inside the Threads of the Past Living History Activity Center.
Kid learns how to plant seeds in front of the Wells Fargo History Museum.
Kid learns how to plant seeds in front of the Wells Fargo History Museum.
A Wells Fargo chest full of golden treasure!
A Wells Fargo chest full of golden treasure!

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of fun photos for you to share and enjoy!

Another photographic walk around Liberty Station.

Colorful quilting artwork in a window of the Visions Art Museum at Liberty Station.
Colorful quilting artwork in a window of the Visions Art Museum at Liberty Station.

I’ve blogged many times about Liberty Station. But there’s always more to discover.

Yesterday I walked around the historic old Navy base, and was pleased to take a few photographs that you might enjoy. I spotted some artwork and framed some of the place’s beauty.

These few moments in time and space might seem random, but it was all new to me. That’s why I like to walk.

This large banner provides an idea of what visitors will see inside the Visions Art Museum, which showcases fascinating quilts.
This large banner provides an idea of what visitors will see inside the Visions Art Museum, which showcases fascinating quilts.
I spotted this bust in a nook while walking along the North Promenade. It was probably created in a nearby art studio. I could find no information.
I spotted this bust in a nook while walking along the North Promenade. It was probably created in a nearby art studio. I could find no information.
The beautiful Galinson Family Fountain at NTC Liberty Station.
The beautiful Galinson Family Fountain at NTC Liberty Station.
I spotted this cool metal wire sculpture of a man dining on the planet Earth near an old, peeling Naval Training Center wall. The art includes a dangling mobile and casts a thin, weird shadow.
I spotted this cool metal wire sculpture of a man dining on the planet Earth near an old, peeling Naval Training Center wall. The art includes a dangling mobile and casts a thin, weird shadow.
Peer into one window at IDW Publishing, headquartered at Liberty Station, and you'll see a huge statue of Leonardo, of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!
Peer into one window at IDW Publishing, headquartered at Liberty Station, and you’ll see a huge statue of Leonardo, of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles!
A peaceful place of natural and man-made beauty, perfect for a slow thoughtful walk.
A peaceful place of natural and man-made beauty, perfect for a slow thoughtful walk.
Decoration above an arch. I believe that is Cabrillo's ship San Salvador. He entered San Diego Bay not far from here.
Decoration above an arch. I believe that is explorer Cabrillo’s ship San Salvador. He entered San Diego Bay not far from here.
Looking down a long colonnade where U.S. Navy sailor recruits once walked.
Looking down a long colonnade where U.S. Navy sailor recruits once walked.
Photo of the eye-pleasing USNTC North Chapel, reflecting the Point Loma sunshine one Sunday.
Photo of the eye-pleasing USNTC North Chapel, reflecting the Point Loma sunshine one Sunday.
Nautical symbols above the front entrance to the Navy's old North Chapel at Liberty Station.
Nautical symbols above the front entrance to the Navy’s old North Chapel at Liberty Station.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of fun photos for you to share and enjoy!

History inside the William Heath Davis House.

Gaslamp Museum at the William Heath Davis House and Park, 1850. Home of the Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation.
Gaslamp Museum at the William Heath Davis House and Park, 1850. Home of the Gaslamp Quarter Historical Foundation.

These photos inside the historic William Heath Davis House Museum were taken a few months ago. I toured the fascinating house during the Fall Back Festival, which is held every year in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter.

Dated 1850, the William Heath Davis House, like a number of other structures in early San Diego, was built on the East Coast and shipped around Cape Horn. At the time San Diego simply didn’t have the resources and tools required to build a fine wooden house. Various rooms inside the museum show what life was like in New Town a century and a half ago. It was a much simpler time. The small museum now sits in the middle of a gigantic, bustling metropolis.

Please read the photo captions for more info, and click the signs to read them.

Photo of the William Heath Davis House Museum taken from across Island Avenue.
Photo of the William Heath Davis House Museum taken from across Island Avenue.
Tours of the historic house are available. A museum store contains fascinating gifts.
Tours of the historic house are available. A museum store contains fascinating gifts.
The William Heath Davis House is the oldest surviving structure from San Diego's New Town. It is a prefabricated salt-box style home, shipped from Portland, Maine around Cape Horn. Dated 1850.
The William Heath Davis House, built in 1850, is the oldest surviving structure from San Diego’s New Town. It is a prefabricated “salt-box” style home, shipped from Portland, Maine around Cape Horn.
The 1850 Davis-Horton House was used as a military barracks, county hospital, and was home to Alonzo Horton and several other families.
The 1850 Davis-Horton House was used as a military barracks, county hospital, and was home to New Town’s founder Alonzo Horton and several other families over the years.
Looking down the stairs from the second floor. A lady in Victorian attire welcomes visitors to the museum during the Fall Back Festival in November.
Looking down the stairs from the second floor. A lady in Victorian attire welcomes visitors to the museum during the Fall Back Festival in November.
A look at the first floor living room where family and guests would gather.
A look at the first floor living room where family and guests would gather.
A small piano, sheet music, teacup and candle. Entertainment in the olden days was simple.
A small piano, sheet music, teacup and candle. Entertainment in the olden days was simple.
The dining table is set for a grand meal in New Town San Diego.
The dining table is set for a grand meal in what was then a sparsely populated New Town San Diego.
An old sewing machine can be found by a window upstairs.
An old sewing machine can be found by a window upstairs.
The nursery, with crib and small bed.
The nursery, with crib, chest and small bed.
Three beds for the children have colorful quilts.
Three beds for the children have colorful quilts.
A desk in the study and a cabinet full of books.
A desk in the study, framed photos, and a cabinet full of books.  No internet back then!
An old-fashioned penny-farthing bicycle reminds visitors to the William Heath Davis House Museum of what life was like a century and a half ago in San Diego.
An old-fashioned penny-farthing bicycle reminds visitors to the William Heath Davis House Museum of what life was like a century and a half ago in San Diego.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk around with my camera! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

You can easily explore Cool San Diego Sights by using the search box on my blog’s sidebar. Or click a tag! There are thousands upon thousands of fun photos for you to share and enjoy!

Early American quilts: amazing color and patterns!

Carpenter's Wheel quilt, Mennonite, about 1890. Made by Mrs. Miller in Easton, Pennsylvania.
Carpenter’s Wheel quilt, Mennonite, about 1890. Made by Mrs. Miller in Easton, Pennsylvania.

My eyes opened wide with amazement last weekend, when my docent friend provided another special tour at the San Diego Museum of Art. This time we had a good look at a surprising exhibition of early American quilts from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.

These quilts, which date mostly from the 19th century, created in many instances by lone Amish and Mennonite quiltmakers, are so dazzling with brilliant colors and inventive, abstract designs that they seem thoroughly modern, like hung works of art by the greatest 20th century Abstract Expressionists.

I know relatively little about quiltmaking.  All I know is that when I gazed at these vibrant works of art, I felt that I was peering into the inner life of a spiritual people, where joy, memories and dreams are represented with magically combined bits of color. These delights for the eye were created to be a warming family treasure, meant to last for generations.

In this blog post you can see just a few photos of the nearly 50 quilts on display. The craftmanship is intricate. I can’t imagine the many hours of persistent dedication, patience and love a quiltmaker required to create just one of these examples. They lived in a very different time and place. In their world living was more simple, and beauty was quietly formed from single threads.

All of these old quilts were discovered over several decades by collectors Gerald Roy and Paul Pilgrim, who also played an important role in the creation of the The National Quilt Museum in Paducah, Kentucky. Many of these quilts were collected solely for their aesthetic appeal. Paul Pilgrim, now deceased, was also an innovative quiltmaker.

Head to Balboa Park to visit the San Diego Museum of Art and you’ll be astounded by many of these quilts. If you do plan to visit, do so by September 5, 2016, when this very unique exhibition comes to an end.

Quilts and Color from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. This special exhibition can be enjoyed at the San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park.
Quilts and Color from the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. This special exhibition can be enjoyed at the San Diego Museum of Art in Balboa Park.
Amazing early American quilts on display at the San Diego Museum of Art feature beautifully contrasted colors and abstract designs.
Amazing early American quilts on display at the San Diego Museum of Art feature beautifully contrasted colors and fascinating abstract designs.
Spider Web quilt dazzles the eye. Many of the quilts feature unique visual effects or optical illusions.
Spider Web quilt dazzles the eye. Many of the quilts feature unique visual effects or optical illusions.
Fans quilt, Amish, 1900-1910. Made in Pennsylvania.
Fans quilt, Amish, 1900-1910. Made in Pennsylvania.
Field of Diamonds quilt, about 1860. The design is achieved by creatively combining hexagons.
Field of Diamonds quilt, about 1860. The design is achieved by creatively combining differently colored hexagons.
Close-up photograph of fantastic Sunburst quilt.
Close-up photograph of fantastic, radiant Sunburst quilt.

I live in downtown San Diego and love to walk! You can follow Cool San Diego Sights via Facebook or Twitter!

To read a few thoughtful stories I’ve written, click Short Stories by Richard.