Monday, September 27, 2021

Two museums, a race track and a giant Gnome!

 Yes, you read that right, a giant gnome...actually the US's tallest gnome and 3rd tallest in the world, formerly first. 

Our trip started out heading over to Kerhonkson, NY, a place I had never been, which is home to the gnome. 

We went through New Paltz, which is where this photo was taken, and you can see the Shawangunk Mountains (Known colloquially as the 'Gunks") in the distance. 
We drove into the mountains and down the other side, to get to Kerhonkson. 
And here's the giant Gnome! How large is the gnome, you may wonder? Well, here I am standing next to it, and I'm 5 foot 7. 
So I figure the gnome is maybe 10 feet tall or so? I'm not great with estimating that sort of thing. 

That was a fun little diversion, and as we were driving there. we went through the town of Accord. I knew Accord had a speedway, so we had to find it. This sign was all the instruction we found...
the road out to the speedway is somewhat rural...
But of course, we found it! 
I zoomed in onto the one small part of the track I could see...I had taken my actual camera, which is not great for much but is good for long distance shots. This was actually shot through the opening in the trees above the A in the Accord sign. 
After we left we put in the GPS for the next planned stop and it took us down Airport Road in Accord...which doesn't have an airport on it or any signs of there ever having been one. The road does go right through the middle of a cemetery though, which is quite interesting. 
We got to 9W and were going along there heading towards Kingston, which was planned to be the next stop....
But we happened to drive by the Den of Marbletown Teddy Bear Museum and doubled back to stop. It was great, and I'm glad we did! We got a guided tour and learned a lot about the history of the Stieff Brand and teddy bears in general.

It's an interactive museum as well, this is me holding a Pelican from the mid-1960s.

It's not JUST bears, and look, even a NASCAR sighting! 

This made me laugh out loud when I saw it! Yes, a T-Rex eating a cupcake with a tray full of food. 
We had a great time, and we spent about an hour and a half there. It was well worth the stop and a nice added bonus...we had no idea it existed, luckily my brother happened to read the sign as we drove by it. 

After that, we were back on the road, now to Kingston NY, 
which is really historically important. 

Our goal, which I didn't know until we pulled up in front of it, was the Hudson River Maritime Museum! (I like to be surprised by the destinations most of the time)
We parked right in front of the propeller for the Mary Powell, a very famous cruise ship that used to sail the Hudson and was based in Rondout, which is a subsection of Kingston where the museum is. 

As a modeler myself, I was very appreciative of how much the museum relies on ship models to tell the stories. 

Those are the backup steering wheels from the SS Alexander Hamilton, about 7 feet tall,

More parts of the Mary Powell
The bench isn't just sitting there for no reason, it's from the ferry terminal that was replaced by the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge in 1963. 

Seeing these obviously rubber toy fish in the "fishing on the Hudson" section made me laugh out loud

They have a whole modeler's room recreated, which I really liked...but forgot to take an overall picture of. These small scale ships, which appear to be 100% scratchbuilt, were really great. I wish I had that skill level.

There's an actual Tugboat as part of the collection. Built in 1898, this is the Mathilda.
The museum is actually on the Rondout Creek, which empties into the Hudson just a mile or so away.
Looking towards the Hudson. 
Info about the Mathilda
I love ducks
They had a Butterfly bush and I was able to get some really great Monarch Butterfly pictures. Note also the bumblebee here. 

After the Maritime Museum, we walked down to the Trolley Museum of New York, which is separated by only two buildings. However, they are currently undergoing renovations and only one floor of the two floor museum is open, so we will be going back to this next year at some point when they finish the work. However, there are a couple of trolley cars outside, which I naturally photographed. 

After that, we went to the Ollies in Kingston where we saw this laugh-inducing abomination, as well as the Target where I had my best card pull ever back in 2003 (Dale Jr's autograph from a single pack purchase) but they no longer carry cards. 
We were both starving at this point and used the Edge's Food setting on the GPS- something we've never done, despite having it since June 2018- and we picked Friendly's. Unfortunately, since the Edge was made in 2018, the Friendly's had gone out of business, so we settled on Wendy's, which wasn't good but at that point we needed fast more and it was literally right there. At least I got this cool shot and saw a 1972/73 Mustang go through the drive through while we were eating. 
Then we went across the Kingston-Rhinecliff Bridge, which I had never been over before.

Right by the Rhinecliff side of the Bridge there's a really nice farm stand which we stopped at. 
Finally, heading home, we ran into some traffic at the Mid-Hudson Bridge in Poughkeepsie but it wasn't bad, and was worse going north (we were going south). This is the Walkway Over the Hudson State Park in this photo. 
Finally, a funny sign we passed on the way home.
I added a bunch of new places that I had never photographed before, including the other Rochester (For some reason New York has two) and Accord, which is now alphabetically the first place in my Places I've Been Project. 

While none of the places I went to had traditional cards unfortunately, I didn't walk away empty handed. 
I got some new books to read, two at the Maritime Museum and one at Ollie's,
and four vintage post cards at the Maritime Museum. 

While we were out, the new display case my brother got for me arrived, although I was too exhausted to to try it out then. I really like it, I think I like it even better than the cases with the mirror backs. It's actually easier to see the cars here, and it's lighter to boot. All but two of these I built during 2021- two of them I built in 2020. They aren't in any particular order here, just the order I picked them up in to put in the case. The neon pink of the 1989 Kyle Petty car really pops more here than it did in the "professional" style photos I posted before. It holds 65 cars and I've finished 58 already this year...going to be full literally next week. 

I ended up taking over 1400 photos on the day, and even with removing the blurry rejects it's still a lot more than I shared here. I have three photo albums on my website that you can see here:

The ride may still be uploading when this goes live, I don't know as I'm scheduling it. 

Thanks for reading!