Tracing California’s Orange Roots at the Citrus State Historic Park

The orange is one of the most iconic things about California. Southern California’s climate makes it a perfect place to grow citrus, and thanks to advances in irrigation, processing, transportation, and the addition of the Washington navel orange, California’s citrus industry boomed in the late 1800s, as oranges and their citrus cousins made for California’s…

Discovering the Hidden Treasures of Sid Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre

Think you’re looking at an ancient Egyptian temple? Well, not quite. This isn’t Egypt, and this wasn’t built thousands of years ago. Try Hollywood, and 1922. This is Grauman’s Egyptian Theatre. Patrick and I have been meaning to take one of the tours offered at the Egyptian for years now, and with the theatre’s future…

Gallows, Ghosts, and Paved Over Graves: A Visit to San Diego’s Whaley House

On a September day in 1852 James “Yankee Jim” Robinson was taken from an adobe jail to the gallows. Standing upon a wagon, a noose was placed around his neck. When the order was given, the wagon driver pulled away, and Yankee Jim reportedly kept his feet on the wagon as long as possible, but…

The Stunning Art Deco Theatre Hidden Inside Catalina’s Casino

Our main reason for visiting Catalina was to attend Catalinaland, a presentation by Ambassador of Americana, and personal idol, Charles Phoenix. Phoenix was presenting his slideshow celebrating the island in the iconic Avalon Theatre, which is located within the Catalina Casino. When chewing gum king, William Wrigley Jr. opened his “Casino” on May 29, 1929,…

The Violent History of LA’s Iconic Crossroads of the World

Sunset Boulevard is synonymous with Hollywood. It’s home to a plethora of iconic buildings and linked to many legendary people. One such building is Crossroads of the World, a bizarre little 1930s shopping center turned office complex that looks like something out of a Disney theme park, with a steamship style building “sailing” past storefronts…

The One Night Revival of Hollywood’s Favorite Honky Tonk, the Palomino Club

When people think of Hollywood, they think of searchlights rocking back and forth, glittering movie stars, and flash bulbs popping on a red carpet. But just on the other side of the Hollywood sign is North Hollywood, and the further out you go, it turns heavily industrial, and you begin to feel a long way…