Exploring the Desert Wonderland of Moorten Botanical Garden

The annual visit to Palm Springs, which is for Pat’s work, typically means I fill the days on my own – shopping, visiting museums, etc. This year Charles Phoenix recommended I visit Moorten Botanical Garden. And when Charles Phoenix tells you to go somewhere, you go! Home to over 3000 plant varieties, Moorten Botanical Garden…

The Outlet Mall Masquerading as an Assyrian Palace

If you’ve ever driven along Interstate 5 through Commerce, just outside Los Angeles, you’ve likely spied a grand ancient looking palace and perhaps wondered “What on earth is that!?” Well, it’s an outlet mall actually. Yes, an outlet mall, known simply as The Citadel. But it wasn’t always that way. The building was actually built…

The Shopping Mall Based on the Set of a Silent Movie Flop

Located at what is considered to be the center of Hollywood, among grand old movie palaces and tourist traps is the Hollywood and Highland shopping center, with a Forever 21, Victoria’s Secret, Sephora, and more. But this isn’t just any ol’ shopping center, it’s attached to the Dolby Theatre (formerly the Kodak), the home of…

A Revisit to the Enigmatic Fun Factory

Last year we visited the Redondo Fun Factory located on the Redondo Beach Pier after hearing news it would be closing. Over a year later the bizarre Fun Factory, with its eclectic variety of games and collection of odd signs, is still operating, but now has a large banner reading “Open Until December 2019.” With…

Peek Inside America’s Oldest Puppet Theater

Recently we visited The Bob Baker Marionette Theater for a friend’s birthday. It was our second visit to what is the oldest puppet theater in the United States, and it was just as trippy and wonderful as the first time. For the afternoon we got the party room all to ourselves before the show, and…

Abandoned Resort Town of Bombay Beach Now Weird Artist Paradise

Over the last couple days I have been entertaining one of our friends visiting from Portland. It was a whirlwind few days hitting up various tourist and not-so-tourist spots. We spent Sunday in the desert including a visit to the Salton Sea. I’ve been several times now, but it’s always worth revisiting as it is…

Paramount Ranch: Set to Screen

Over the last week my friend Mel (of Deela Designs) was staying with us. Mel is a fellow cosplay friend, with a passion for all things nerdy, and during her stay we had many fun adventures, including a visit to Paramount Ranch. Like me, Mel enjoys HBO’s Westworld, and after she heard about my visit…

The Weird and Hidden Figures of Old Trapper’s Lodge

Off the 101 lies Pierce College in Woodland Hills, and on its campus is a unique and downright bizarre sight, a collection of concrete sculptures depicting old west figures, along with a faux cemetery featuring rather colorful epitaphs. What is this exactly? Well, it’s the remains of Old Trapper’s Lodge. Built in 1941 by a…

The Abandoned Movie Ranch of Corriganville

Over the weekend Patrick and I visited Corriganville Park, the former location of Corriganville, a western backlot and amusement park of sorts from 1949 to 1965. Corriganville was built by movie and TV actor Ray Bernard, but better known as Crash Corrigan. After going on a hunting trip in Simi Valley with fellow actor, Clark…