Preservation Photos #64

 

The Egyptian Theater in Park City, Utah, built in 1926, is an example of the Egyptian Revival Style. Photography courtesy of Linda O'Shea, November 2010.

Tennis in New York, Larger-than-life Texas, Roadside Utah, Missouri Preservation & Vermont Outhouses

Happy Monday! Here are some interesting links and stories I came across over the weekend (with a super-long post title to attract your attention).  Enjoy!

A New York Times article on September 11, 2010, featured an article about “Long Past the Last Match Point, Debating What’s Next at Forest Hills.” The gist of it: In Forest Hills Gardens, Queens, NY, the West Side Tennis Club owns the historic West Side Tennis Stadium, constructed in 1923, which was host to the US Open and many significant events in tennis history. A tennis match has not been played at the stadium in years and the wooden benches and concrete structure are suffering from neglect and deterioration. The club, operating at a loss for many years, does not know what to do with the stadium, which is small for today’s standards. Even if money can be raised for restoration, the West Side Tennis Club is in need of a creative solution. Thoughts? {Picture below shows the Tennis Stadium in 1960. Source: the NY Times, September 11, 2010, by Patrick A. Burns. Click photo for original source.}

Need some fun places to visit? Check out 10 Endangered American Tourist Attractions Worth Saving (with pictures!) on the blog, Searching for Authenticity, based on an article in Spring 2010 Society for Commercial Archaeology newsletter (and reproduced on the SCA blog). I want to visit Tex Randall in Canyon, TX.

Tex Randall. Photo source: RoadsideAmerica.com. Click for source.

Check out this awesome blog by Steven Cornell, Utah-rchitecture, dedicated to the past, present, and future architecture of Utah. It began in January 2010 and features only a few posts per month, but all seem well-written, well researched, and very interesting! The most recent post discusses the The Birth of Utah’s Automobile Tourism — lots of motel postcards & images included.

Another blog I just found is by Preservation Research Office, a project based collaborative research organization based in St. Louis, MO.  The blog, Ecology of Absence, seeks to be,

“… a voice for historic preservation and a chronicle of architectural change in the St. Louis region… The major theme of the blog is historic architecture and the primary goal is to build awareness of that architecture and interest in preserving it. The editorial approach is to “strike the roots” and look beyond threatened buildings at the larger forces that create, change and often destroy the built environment of the city. Public policy is a key part of the analysis. Consequently, the blog focuses on changes in the built environment that come about as St. Louis attempts to stem the deindustrialization, depopulation, shrinking public services and loss of architectural fabric that define the modern American urban condition.”

Roadside, real estate, policy – good stuff. Check it out!

And lastly for today, how about designing outhouses? Believe it or not, people think about such things. The book, Outhouses by Famous Architects, proves such a statement (thanks Elyse!)  In Vermont, the Vermont Wood Manufacturers Association (VWMA) has invited Vermont architects and woodworkers to participate to design the “Green Mountain Comfort Station,” a wooden structure that will house a composting toilet to be used at outdoor recreation areas and state parks in Vermont {see article here}. The winner will be announced on September 25, 2010. Read more about the contest rules in the Burlington Free Press article from September 12, 2010, “Designers pit themselves against the old, standby trailside outhouse.”

How could you not love Vermont, I ask.

Annie O’Shea, Skeleton Athlete and Solo Road Tripper on I-15

Salt Lake City, UT to Calgary, Canada is a distance about 900 miles, involving snow and mountains this time of year. Most people probably wouldn’t choose to make this trip alone, except for my sister Annie O’Shea.  Then again, Annie is unlike most people I know. Annie is a member of the United States Skeleton Team, training for the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, Canada.  What is the sport of skeleton? Oh, well, just imagine lying on your stomach, face first, on a sled that is just a few inches off the ice.  Now imagine doing that at about 80 mph, with your only protection being a super thin speed suit and a ski helmet. That is how Annie spends many of her days. You can see a video of the start on her website – see under Media Gallery.
Annie O'Shea, Skeleton athlete

Annie O'Shea, Skeleton athlete

During the winter months, the skeleton and bobsled athletes compete in the United States, Canada, and Europe.  For a number of reasons it was easiest for Annie to fly into Salt Lake City, Utah and rent a car to drive up to Calgary for her most recent competitions. Knowing my fetish for road trip photographs, she took many for me and wrote a blog post on her adventure.

Hay on the side of I-15 in Idaho. It was everywhere, Annie said.

Hay on the side of I-15 in Idaho. It was everywhere, Annie said.

The route from Salt Lake City to Calgary follows along I-15. If you have a GPS, do not rely on it, according to Annie. It did steer her in the wrong direction for part of her trip. Even though Annie had to travel the interstate for time consideration, she was still able to see the beauty of these states.

More hay in flat Idaho.

More hay in flat Idaho.

Montana!

Montana!

Annie, knowing how much I love crossing state lines, remembered to take the above photograph of the Montana sign. Montana, known as Big Sky Country, was quite cloudy as Annie traveled through, but its beauty is not lost in these photographs.

I-15 traveling through the mountains in Big Sky Country.

I-15 traveling through the mountains in Big Sky Country.

These photographs are more than enough to make me wish that I could have joined Annie on her road trip. She considered that factor, but also considered that I might slow her down a bit. Something to the effect of “Oooh, wait, can we take a picture of that? Let’s stop here!!”

Cloudy in Montana

Cloudy in Montana

Thanks to Annie for sharing these photographs! Be sure to check out her full account of the trip on www.annieoshea.blogspot.com.*  It will make you want to travel the Great American West. I can’t wait for my chance to get out to those states!
 
*We are in the midst of updating her website (www.annieoshea.com), but she does update her blog as often as her training schedule allows.