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North Carolina

Memorial Day, 2009, I was driving to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina to see where the Wright Brothers made their historic flight in 1903.  Surprise, it isn't in Kitty Hawk like we were taught.  Turns out it was just outside Kitty Hawk and as people moved close to the site, they incorporated as "Kill Devil Hills" (the hill itself was the site of several Wright Brothers glider experimants) in 1953.  So now THAT'S the birthplace of modern aviation, much to the chagrin of Kitty Hawk.

I'd expected Great Smokey Mountains National Park to compete as my North Carolina pic, but it rained while I was there.  Bummer.  Still, this was a great stop.  (5-25-09)

North Dakota

In my Big Sky Adventure, I made my way to Theodore Roosevelt National Park.  According to Herman Zapp (see Idaho) he's not too popular in Latin America due to his Panama meddling.  Still, the park bearing his name was lots of fun.

Most of the prairie dogs (Cynomys) were poisoned to make way for cattle, but here they are protected.  They naturally live in "prairrie dog towns" of several hundred holes.  There were 5 or 6 of these towns in the park.  Here we see one of the critters using his tail for balance (they wag them at astonishing speeds).  They have a high pitched "bark" to warn others of predators, which is how they got their name. Cute little buggers!  (6-6-08)


For Ohio, how could I NOT do the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland?  It's not just artists, but gear also has a place.  "Back in the day", a band called Quicksilver Messenger Service featured guitarist John Cippolina.  His rig, on display here, looks like it was designed by Dr. Seuss! All rockers MUST GO HERE!  (9-19-08)

The John Shinnick 5 Year, 50 State (and D.C.) Pledge!

Recreated Feb. 20, 2021



It was back in 1995.  Hardly seems that long ago.  A guy bombed a large building in Oklahoma City and killed 168 unsuspecting innocents.  The City turned the site into a large and very powerful memorial.  This is the front.  The building to the left is an accompanying museum.  I wish my memories of Oklahoma were happier, but I'm glad I saw this.  (1-29-09)


Among the first things I did upon retiring was to head up to Eugene, Oregon to visit my old friend Gary Parks and his family. While there we went to a local music festival.  It was... festive.  Here are some of the ... festivities! (circa 5-1-06)


Patriots may hate me.  I used to represent Pennsylvania with a picture of the Liberty Bell, but there was a place in that state I desperately wanted to go to when I was 12.  No, not Hershey.  I was an avid Little Leaguer and I wanted to play in the Little League World Series held annually in Williamsport.

I was pretty good.  I hit well over .300 and played great defense back in 1963.  When the dust had settled, I made the all-star team as the starting left fielder. Next stop, Williamsport. Tragically, we lost our first game, I think 7-1. I didn't get a hit that day.

Not that it grated on me or anything, but I had to see the place.  I can't believe they let kids that age play on fields as nice as this.  I swear there are big league fields that aren't this nice!  I know I never will, but at least I got to Williamsport.  48 years late, BUT I GOT THERE! (6-2-11)

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