As mentioned in my post about Rock-a-Hoola, I love photographing abandoned locations, and we stumbled upon quite a few during our road trip, dotted in between tiny towns, and miles of fields. So here is quite the picture heavy post of what happens when buildings get left behind…
I literally took thousands of photos on our road trip, 3322 to be exact. Most were of abandoned buildings and killer vintage signs, which are my two favorite things to photograph, and our road trip was full of them! So much so my photos are coming to you in three, yes, three, separate posts! First up I’m sharing the sights of Reno! Now, if you follow me on Instagram and checked out any of my stories while we were on the road, you may have seen me fawning all over some of these signs, and I am so happy to finally share them with you in all of their glory in this post!
Most of the signs you’ll see are from motels, and I’ve even included some images of the actual buildings if the building was cool too!
If you liked this, there will be another signage post in the near future! So stay tuned!
When Patrick and I decided to stop in Vegas on our way to Idaho, I suggested we stay at Circus Circus, as I am a fan of the James Bond film Diamonds are Forever, as the hotel is featured somewhat prominently in the film. Also we were able to visit two more filming locations that I thought would be fun to share as well!
I think it’s fair to note that when discussing filming locations, there will be some spoilers involved! So you have been warned!
If you only go to one museum in Las Vegas, it should be the Neon Museum. The Neon Museum is rich in what made Las Vegas famous – neon. That spectacular glow of gases swirling inside glass made the lure of Las Vegas so bright and people flocked. Sadly though, over the years, many motels, hotels, casinos, and businesses have either bit the dust or “updated” their signage. But thankfully some of that signage is laid to rest in the “Neon Boneyard”.
The Neon Museum doesn’t just let these old signs sit out, they are also actively restoring their signs, slowly, one at a time. The Neon Museum offers both daytime and nighttime tours, and Patrick and I did both during our stay in Vegas, so we got to see the restored signs lit up. You’ll see a combination of both visits throughout the post.
The Neon Museum is a photographer’s dream, and I took hundreds of photos! And even though I narrowed it down, it was still quite a lot!
Patrick and I are finally home from our road trip to Idaho! Why Idaho? Well, my grandfather on my mom’s side passed away, so we went for his services, but I figured if we had to go, why not make the best of it, and do a road trip?
The first stop on our trip was Las Vegas (not counting the abandoned waterpark in my last post), and we crammed a lot into our two night stay, so I have lots to share with you! And we will start with the Mob Museum.
Very fittingly located in an old Las Vegas courthouse, the Mob Museum was on my list last time I was in Vegas, but didn’t get around to it. The museum offers a chronology of the history of the mob in the United States, as well as the history of law enforcement’s way of combatting the mob, but with a strong focus on Las Vegas, and a nice general history of Vegas.
At the very end of the museum was a small room showcasing vintage fashion from the late 1910s through the early 1930s, with some absolutely stunning pieces! So if you’re more in this for the fashion, just scroll to the end!
When it comes to my passion for photographing abandoned Americana, my love really is with places from the mid-20th century or older. However any place that is abandoned I’ll check out, even if it was abandoned just thirteen years ago, which is the case with Lake Dolores’ Rock-a-Hoola Waterpark off Interstate 15 in Newberry Springs.
Originally, the area around Lake Dolores was a private resort, but opened to the public in 1962. By 1998, it had new owners, and a massive remodel, which added the Rock-a-Hoola Waterpark with the most horrendous and gaudy “retro” theme, which ended up looking like a that 1980s vision throwback to the 1950s. You can check out a video of what it once looked like here, now it has been overrun by graffiti, and I was able to only locate one spot that featured the original “Rock-a-Hoola” text. The park closed in 2004.
Today, a hill looms high with nothing but oddly foreboding supports from the long disappeared waterslides over tag ridded buildings that continue to fade and decay in the hot Mojave sun.
I took loads of photos, so gear up for a pretty picture heavy post!
April 1st kicked off the first day of Boyseberry Festival at Knott’s Berry Farm, which celebrates the berry that helped put Knott’s Berry Farm on the map. And Knott’s puts together some wild and crazy things for guests to eat during the festival, including boysenberry pizza, which was new for this year! There is also loads of entertainment for guests to enjoy, such as Snoopy’s Boysenberry Jam-boree, and they finally brought back the melodramas at the Bird Cage! And the one happening during the festival is hilarious!
Now, I had decided I wanted to make a boysenberry parasol, but between Portland, and the Knott’s Berry Farm auction, I just didn’t find the time to finish it! But I’ll have it done before the festival is over and share with with you all then, because, seriously, you need at least two days to eat everything!
Knott’s offers a festival tasting card, so guests can opt to try six of the special items for $25, including the pizza, which was actually really good, and I’ll likely have it again. I also tried the boysenberry cheesecake dipped in chocolate, which was fabulous, although the chocolate may have overpowered it a bit too much. I may try it again, but sans chocolate. I also absolutely adored the boysenberry cream soda, pictured above. It was so subtle, but still sweet and refreshing.
I have a few more boysenberry inspired ensembles planned for future visits during the festival and hope to share them, along with the new parasol when we get back from our road trip to Idaho!
Peasant top: Pinup Girl Clothing
Skirt: Retro Rejuvenation, Coburg, Oregon
Shoes: Olvera Street, Los Angeles, California
Holster earrings: I honestly don’t remember!
Cowboy Brooch: Found by my dad
Rings: Here and there…