House in Little Italy celebrates Thanksgiving!

This morning during my walk to the Little Italy trolley station I was drawn to a couple of newly painted houses on State Street.

As I got nearer I noticed a fun display on one porch that celebrates Thanksgiving!

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!

Mayflower descendants gather in Balboa Park!

I'm welcomed to Plimoth Plantation West in Balboa Park by two descendants of Mayflower Pilgrims!
I’m welcomed to Plimoth Plantation West in Balboa Park by two descendants of Mayflower Pilgrims!

Yesterday I swung by the International Cottages in Balboa Park to check out an absolutely unique event!

The Mayflower Society’s San Diego Colony had created Plimoth Plantation West, a representation of Pilgrim history and life, focusing on the arrival of the Pilgrims in the New World and their establishment of Plymouth Colony. The colorful event was organized in anticipation of an important day that will arrive in two years: the 400th Anniversary of the Mayflower Landing in 1620.

I’m no expert when it comes to the history of the Pilgrims, so I was fascinated by many of the displays.

I learned about the Pilgrims’ various reasons for departing England, their journey across the Atlantic, the signing of the Mayflower Compact, the eventual anchoring off Cape Cod, the extreme hardships and many deaths during that first harsh winter, their friendly and not-so-friendly relations with several Native American tribes who lived in the region . . . even the sorts of games Pilgrim children enjoyed playing.

Many members of the Society of Mayflower Descendants were at the event in period costume, celebrating their ancestors and an important chapter in America’s early history. One gentleman I spoke to had descended directly from William Bradford, the governor of Plymouth Colony!

Here are a few photos of Plimoth Plantation West!

If you are one of the 31 million possible Mayflower descendants worldwide, you can join the General Society of Mayflower Descendants!
If you are one of the 31 million possible Mayflower descendants worldwide, you can join the General Society of Mayflower Descendants!
Someone points to a chart showing the original Mayflower passengers. Less than half survived and made it to the first Thanksgiving in 1621.
Someone points to a chart showing the original Mayflower passengers. Less than half survived and made it to the first Thanksgiving in 1621.
The Mayflower Compact, signed aboard ship, was the first governing document of Plymouth Colony. It specified basic laws and social rules for the new colony.
The Mayflower Compact, signed aboard ship, was the first governing document of Plymouth Colony. It specified basic laws and social rules for the new colony.
This friendly gent was dressed like William Brewster, a respected elder and leader of Plymouth Colony.
This friendly gent was dressed like religious separatist William Brewster, a respected elder and leader of Plymouth Colony.
A timeline of Pilgrim history begins with the formation of the Church of England. Puritans sought to eliminate retained Catholic practices. Separatists created secret congregations.
A timeline of Pilgrim history begins with the formation of the Church of England. Puritans sought to eliminate retained Catholic practices. Separatists created secret congregations.
One gentleman was demonstrating the use of a quill and inkwell. I learned ink was often made from berry juices, and turkey and goose feathers were primarily used for quills.
One gentleman was demonstrating the use of a quill and inkwell. I learned ink was often made from berry juices, and turkey and goose feathers were primarily used for quills.
Educational tools used by the Pilgrims included a Child's Hornbook, a form of children's primer containing the letters of the alphabet.
Educational tools used by the Pilgrims included a Child’s Hornbook, a form of children’s primer containing the letters of the alphabet.
Pilgrim children enjoyed very simple toys and games, and small crudely made dolls.
Pilgrim children enjoyed simple games and toys, like spinning tops, and small crudely made dolls.
The descendants of the Mayflower Pilgrims gather for a special event in San Diego's Balboa Park!
The descendants of the Mayflower Pilgrims gather for a special event in San Diego’s always lively Balboa Park!

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 photos for you to enjoy!

Signs of autumn appear in San Diego.

Sycamore leaves are beginning to turn along the San Diego River as autumn begins.
Sycamore leaves are beginning to turn along the San Diego River as autumn begins.

It’s much cooler in San Diego now that summer has ended. Today the sky remained overcast. The temperature was perfect for an exhilarating walk after work.

During the past few days I’ve noticed signs of autumn have appeared around San Diego. No, the palm trees haven’t turned yet.

Enjoy a few photographs. And maybe a laugh!

While walking downtown I noticed Pumpkin Spice is back at Starbucks.
While walking downtown I noticed Pumpkin Spice is back at Starbucks.
Haunted Tales is returning to the Star of India just before Halloween.
Haunted Tales is returning to the tall ship Star of India just before Halloween.
Pumpkins are beginning to arrive at grocery stores. This outdoor bin was still empty a couple days ago, but ready.
Pumpkins are beginning to arrive at grocery stores. This outdoor bin was still empty a couple days ago, but ready.
Dia de Los Muertos is coming again to Old Town San Diego State Historic Park. It's one of my favorite events.
Dia de Los Muertos is coming again to Old Town San Diego State Historic Park. It’s one of my favorite events.
A variety of squash can be found along India Street in Little Italy.
A nice harvest of squash can be found along India Street in Little Italy.
These leaves are turning at the Little Italy trolley station. Wait a minute. Those are leaves, right?
These leaves are turning at the Little Italy trolley station. Wait a minute. Those are leaves, right?
Colorful autumn leaves fill tiny trees at the Old Town Model Railroad Depot!
Colorful autumn leaves fill tiny trees at the Old Town Model Railroad Depot!

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!

Scarecrows and pumpkins along India Street!

A couple of tiny smiling scarecrows occupy flower planters on India Street in Little Italy.
A couple of tiny smiling scarecrows occupy flower planters on India Street in Little Italy.

It must be autumn in San Diego! Because this morning I was greeted by all sorts of pumpkins and friendly scarecrows as I walked up India Street in Little Italy! Thanksgiving is almost here!

As I walked up India Street I was greeted by all sorts of scarecrows and pumpkins. It must be autumn--almost Thanksgiving!
As I walked up India Street I encountered many scarecrows and pumpkins. It must be autumn–almost Thanksgiving!
Three pumpkins and three smiling friendly scarecrows beside the base of the famous Little Italy landmark sign.
Three pumpkins and three friendly scarecrows on bales of hay at the base of the famous Little Italy landmark sign.
Elegant pumpkins in a Little Italy shop window.
Elegant pumpkins in a Little Italy shop window.
A welcoming bright orange pumpkin in another shop window.
A welcoming orange pumpkin in another shop window.
That scarecrow in the middle looks like a crow in disguise!
That scarecrow in the middle looks like a sneaky crow in disguise!
Walk up India Street in Little Italy and you're reminded that it's autumn in San Diego!
Walk up India Street in Little Italy and you’re reminded that it’s autumn 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!

Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K helps homeless.

Turkey hats on runners preparing for the Father Joe's Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K, an annual event to help San Diego's homeless.
Turkey hats on runners preparing for the Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K, an annual event to help San Diego’s homeless.

This morning thousands gathered in Balboa Park to participate in the Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K run and walk. Money raised during the annual event helps Father Joe’s Villages provide food, shelter, medical care, employment training and hope for many of San Diego’s homeless.

If you’d like to donate to Father Joe’s, or learn more about what they do, here’s their website.

Homeless man on Sixth Avenue, across the street from the west edge of Balboa Park.
Homeless man on Sixth Avenue, across the street from Balboa Park.
Thousands gather in Balboa Park's Plaza de Panama before the start of Father Joe's Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K run and walk.
Thousands gather in Balboa Park’s Plaza de Panama before the start of Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K run and walk.
Many Thanksgiving-themed costumes and hats could be spotted among the participants. These dogs are already in the Christmas spirit!
Many Thanksgiving-themed costumes and hats could be spotted among the participants. These dogs are already in the Christmas spirit!
Energy-providing fruit slices are prepared for 5K participants before the beginning of the race.
Energy-providing fruit slices are prepared for the 5K participants before the beginning of the race.
The Knights of Columbus had a pancake breakfast in Balboa Park during the Father Joe's Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K.
The Knights of Columbus had a pancake breakfast in Balboa Park during the Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K.
Catholic priests perform a religious service in the Plaza de Panama for the faithful before the Thanksgiving race to help the homeless.
Catholic priests perform a religious service in the Plaza de Panama for the faithful before the Thanksgiving race to help the homeless.
Runners and walkers head toward the start line in Balboa Park.
Runners and walkers head toward the start line in Balboa Park. Morning sun shines on the iconic California Tower.
Thousands of participants pass over the Cabrillo Bridge, just prior to beginning the Father Joe's Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K.
Thousands of participants pass over the Cabrillo Bridge, just prior to beginning the Father Joe’s Villages Thanksgiving Day 5K.
This family is dressed like a Pilgrim and a turkey dinner.
This family is dressed like a Pilgrim and a turkey dinner!
People get enthused a few minutes before the fun run begins.
People get enthused a few minutes before the fun run begins.
Homeless person alone on the sunlit grass in the far corner of Balboa Park.
Homeless person alone on the sunlit grass in a corner of Balboa Park.
Getting ready to start a competitive 5K on Thanksgiving morning. Money raised helps provide food and shelter for the homeless in San Diego.
Getting ready to start a competitive 5K run on Thanksgiving morning. Money raised helps provide food and shelter for the homeless in San Diego.

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Thanksgiving wisdom on a fence.

Chalk art wisdom on a city fence. Give Thanks. Don't let the things you want make you forget the things you have.
Thanksgiving chalk art wisdom on a fence. Give Thanks. Don’t let the things you want make you forget the things you have.

Just sharing some Thanksgiving wisdom. I spotted this chalk art on a fence during a walk up Fifth Avenue.

Give Thanks. Don’t let the things you want make you forget the things you have.

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

Gratitude expressed by random people in a park.

What are you grateful for? Random people write their thoughts. They are grateful for life, family, school, warm socks, waking up to sunrises, and people who smile for no reason.
What are you grateful for? Random people in Balboa Park write their thoughts. They are grateful for life, family, school, warm socks, waking up to sunrises, and people who smile for no reason.

I stumbled upon a heartwarming sight in Balboa Park–just a few days before Thanksgiving.

A couple named Gratitude Gal and Gratitude Guy were greeting people who were walking down El Prado. The smiling pair carried a dry-erase board. People were invited to write down a few things in life for which they were grateful. Many of those random people did.

Thanksgiving is three days away. But it seems to me that every single day is an appropriate time to give thanks.  Happiness is a choice.

A random person walking along happily writes down a few reasons why they are thankful.
A random person walking along happily writes down a few reasons why they are thankful.
Gratitude Gal and Gratitude Guy collect messages of thanksgiving on a dry erase board in Balboa Park.
Gratitude Gal and Gratitude Guy collect messages of thanksgiving on a dry erase board in Balboa Park.

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