Archive for the Roadtrip Category

Quickie L.A.-ish trip

Posted in Roadtrip on April 20, 2014 by roadsidenut

This was just a one-day trip but I got loads of good photos.  I got a little night-neon shooting in on Friday & Saturday night before zipping home.  Nik’s eye pressure checked out fine.  We’ll be back in three months for another $48 15-second test.  More outrageous prices:  the cost of gas here is now $4.20 a gallon — for the cheap stuff!

Let’s start with a couple shots from Friday night.  Here’s Al’s Bar in San Gabriel:

blog1

 

From Santa Monica:

blog2

 

Stalling for the vet appointment Saturday morning — time for some signs from nearby Los Angeles:

blog3

 

Here are a few other signs I’ve passed dozens of times near the vet’s office but never shot.  These beer mugs must have been mass-produced. There was another one just like it in Daggett, CA (gone now):
https://www.flickr.com/photos/route66_aout-sept2010/5581616363/

I’m betting all three of these signs were installed at different times.  The bigger sign appears to be the oldest with those Art Deco style corners.  It surely had neon and a far nicer paint job originally:

blog4

 

Another oldie with nice jiggity edges — and a great freestanding arrow.  I’ve got a Flickr group for these neon “extensions” that you might enjoy perusing:
https://www.flickr.com/groups/neonextensions

blog5

Although it’s been repainted countless times, you can still make out the “ripple tin” panels that were used to build it.  [clicking on photos at my blog makes them bigger]  As Paddy Rowell of Flexlume Signs explained to me awhile back, the crimping was not just a decorative thing.  The sign maker could use a lighter metal since the crimping strengthened it.  Paint also stuck to the crimped panels better than flat ones.

blog6

 

A sun-bleached oldie from Gardena:

blog7

The non-sunny side shows the colors better:

blog8

A fun sign on the side of the building.  Missing some plastic but those neon notes are incredible, no?

blog9

 

Also in Gardena — Majestic Lighting.  This crown is wonderfully curved and I think the M might be (or was) backlit.  How appropriate for a lighting place!

blog10

 

It’s hard to work around these towering palm trees in California sometimes!  The Don is in Wilmington:

blog11

 

The Maya Shoe Repair is in Santa Monica:

blog12

More signs in the wonderful storefront.  The interior is incredibly vintage as well:

blog13

 

Front yard adornment in Lakewood.  I don’t know the story — but it appears to be carved from the former tree.  Apparently, meant to be Venus de Milo — but kind of an alien-like face:

blog14

blog15

 

Yes, in Norwalk:

blog16

 

Some bad news — the Dal Rae replaced their neon with backlit plastic earlier this year.   They also rebuilt the parking sign with all plastic in-the-style-of the original (ugh).  Here’s one of my photos from 2012:

blog18

And now:

blog19

 

Over to San Bernardino (it was a busy day!!).  What can I say – I’ve used the word “wonderful” too many times in this post already:

blog17

 

I finally shot this place that I’ve been passing — my namesake, after all:

blog20

blog21

 

I timed the end of the day to shoot the neon signs at Universal Studios CityWalk at dusk.  I’ve shot them during the day before and was able to negotiate with the parking attendant for a 20 minute freebie at curbside.  But the attendant there last night gave me no mercy and it cost me $10.  But I can finally check it off my list.  The vintage signs will all be uploaded to my website.  I also posted a few to Flickr just now.  But to close out this blog, I’ll give you one of the many modern signs (or at least I think it is!).  Is this racist or sexist or just fun?  Too bad the “SA” was out but the animation is fun.  I took a quickie video for you (turn your head sideways – sorry! – and turn your volume off!):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HYIxlNTC2kg&feature=youtu.be

blog22

 

More photos from this trip over at Flickr:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

 

The dogs and I will be back on the road in a couple of weeks.  Back up to the Stockton area.

Happy Easter!

Debra Jane

 

Bowlarama

Posted in Roadtrip on April 11, 2014 by roadsidenut

Just a quick “hi” to let you know about a neat little gallery thingie in Los Angeles for all you fans of bowling buildings & signs.  The opening was tonight and I toughed out the crazy rush hour weekend-getaway traffic to get my butt down there.  I didn’t have my “real” camera with me — but I took a few photos with my phone.  I lost my iPhone a couple of weeks ago and I don’t know how to use this new hotshot Samsung phone.  But I did what I could — after a glass of wine which lowered my techie capabilities even further.

I didn’t write down the facts of where things came from — so consider this as just “flavor” of the event and show:

bowl1

Reproductions of matchbooks with bowling alley advertising:

bowl2

bowl3

The crowd.  At least two roadside “celebs” in this photo:  Chris Nicols (back to camera) who was the show’s curator — and Charles Phoenix (facing right):

bowl4

 

bowl5

Here are the details about the show if you’re interested or think you can make it.  It runs through May 11:
http://aplusd.org/exhibitions-future/bowlarama

and more:

http://www.lamag.com/laculture/culturefilesblog/2014/04/02/slide-show-bowlarama-at-the-architecture-and-design-museum

 

I’ll be back blogging next weekend with some L.A. area shooting.

dj

 

Fresno-ish Wrap-up

Posted in Roadtrip on April 7, 2014 by roadsidenut

A killer drive home last night.  Four and a half hours after shooting like mad all day.  But we’re home and safe and I made it through work today.  All is well.  And the weather yesterday was full sun — giving me nearly 12 hours to shoot.  I did so well that we’ll be able to tackle Stockton and thereabouts next time.  But that won’t be til May.  In the meantime, I have loads of photos from this trip to add to the website.

I’m still wiped out — so let’s move straight to the photos.  From Gustine:

blog1

 

From Dos Palos — established, I believe, in 1966:

blog2

 

The Valley Bowl in Madera:

blog3

 

From Firebaugh:

blog4

 

Time for a little tribute to my traveling buds.   For you newcomers, my four dogs are present for each and every one of my roadtrips.  They are much calmer on Day #2.  Except for Gremlin (at the window) who’s always looking for something worthy of ear-piercing barking.  That’s Nik (Sputnik) and Fix in the foreground:

blog5

Griz (Griswold) has hopped on the dash a few times while I’m driving — like here.  It’s not a habit that I’m encouraging!  I think he’s just looking for sun-bathing opportunities.  Since this is not really a comfy place for that, I assume the practice will fade:

blog6

Since he’s so backlit in that photo, here’s a better shot of his face:

blog6a

 

Onward!  From Madera – El Molino Mexican Imports (most likely not the original business name):

blog7

 

The top of the Cornaggia’s Bakery sign in Chowchilla.  From the plugged holes and amateurish paint job, this sign might have been really nice in the past.  Still cute enough now though:

blog8

 

The Century Bowl in Merced.   The bowling alley is long boarded up.   The “coming soon” illustration on the sign at the right shows a KFC, a gas station, a 24-hour restaurant — but not this gigantic sign.  Shoot it now, folks:

blog9

 

Also from Merced:

blog10

 

You may recall the Slumber Motel sign from Saturday night’s post.   Here’s the dayshot showing the atomic sign topper.  It was probably outlined with neon and flashed sequentially:

blog11

 

From Modesto — the Fraternal Order of Eagles Hall – with some very cool “mission style” architecture.  I don’t know if it was built for the Eagles:

blog12

blog13

 

Also Modesto — a repurposed Shakey’s sign:

blog14
Lastly, from Lathrop — this UFO has crash-landed on the roof of the Tower Mart gas station where I filled up for the long journey home:

blog15

blog16

 

The next mini roadtrip will be in two weeks.  It’ll be just a little jaunt to the L.A. area since I have an eye doc exam for Nik in Culver City.  I’ll be blogging again then.  Don’t forget to check out the other sampling of photos from this weekend over at Flickr:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

Til then — happy Spring!

dj & the dogs

 

April in Fresno

Posted in Roadtrip on April 5, 2014 by roadsidenut

Not quite April in Paris — but good enough for me!  I’m pretty much done with SoCal trips – although there will still be some L.A. area stuff now & then because of Nik’s eyeball checkups.  We’re moving on to the Central Valley for a bit.  Then it’ll be back to Bay Area weekends for a while.   I’m gradually chipping away at northern California but it takes times since I can only get away weekends for now.

The day started in Arvin (just south of Bakersfield) which was depressingly smothered in clouds.  Even more depressing was the number of stray dogs — many limping around on three legs.  A pair of skittish Chihuahuas.  Heartbreaking.

What brought me to Arvin — this guy — who’s been on my list for years.  I’ll be back on a sunnier day.  Very few of these statues outside of Michigan — more about them at my website here:
http://www.agilitynut.com/eateries/caesars.html

blog2

Also in Arvin:  a fairly huge gas station sign — most likely not the original design:

blog1

 

The weather wasn’t much better in Bakersfield.  Here’s an interesting round building which is now skanky apartments.  I’m assuming a motel complex originally.  Maybe an upstairs restaurant?  Beware of the dog indeed — a grey Pit Bull lower right giving us all the hairy eyeball — and my silly, wimpo terriers inside the van egging him on with their nutso barking:

blog3

 

On to Coalinga — sun at last!

blog4

 

Still in Coalinga — a former Sno-White Drive-in.  A re-purposed sign but the building was nothing special.  More examples of the chain at my site here:
http://www.agilitynut.com/eateries/casno.html

blog5

 

One more from sunny Coalinga:

blog6

 

A couple of signs from Lemoore:

blog7

 

This one says in broken English “mufflers” but I’m thinking maybe a Chevrolet or Pontiac sign originally.  I’m too tired to check on designs right now:

blog8

 

Two from Reedley — a closed bar:

blog9

and a vacant shoe store.  Note the Red Goose logo which would have looked like this originally:
http://www.agilitynut.com/10/4/redgoose.jpg

blog10

 

From Orange Cove — which was delightfully fragrant with orange groves in bloom.  Unfortunately, this theatre has gone the way of far too many others.  Maybe if we all pray hard enough, this building will be turned back into a theatre?

blog11

 

On to fabulous Fresno.  A skeleton of a sign.  I like the semi-sputnik with bulbs on top.  And the puffy clouds always help.

blog12

 

Repainted drably and denuded of neon but still some dignity left:

blog13

 

This one has to be 1920s-ish with its little rope-y border & most likely opal glass “Beauty Shop” letters.  It would have been a hanging, two-sided sign.  You can still see the wire rings on top of the panels which would have supported it.  And the other side of the sign is flat against the building now.  Am I imagining lavender-colored tubing?

blog14

 

Surely, the yellow piece must have been painted transmission-like:

blog15

 

This stash of vintage signs is at Commercial Neon Inc.  I had to shoot through the fence from pretty far back.  But some of you may recognize Me-N-Ed’s Pizza, Cedar Lanes and other Fresno signs.    The Ronnie’s Midway Market sign is also here:

blog16

 

After a long drive in the pines near Yosemite to shoot some signs & bear statues, we called it a day in Merced where there are many lovely things to shoot at night.  I decided to treat myself to dinner-to-go at Marie’s and help foot their electric bill:

blog17

I knew it was meant to be when I saw a cigar store Indian right by the door.  I’ve had a bit of an obsession with these statues lately and have added loads of them to my lists for all over the country:

blog18

A cute interior with lots of 7up signs since the neon 7up sign is right next to the restaurant (see my Flickr photos from tonight):

blog19

blog20

Here’s my chow — two cheese enchiladas.  I have to be honest and say it was on the bland side.  Maybe they toned it down for the gringa?  But I’m sure if you dine in, you can ask for it spicy.   Still, I have a happy tummy & the dogs were delighted to share & lick the container when I was done.

blog21

 

Fantastic font, no?  Major police activity going on here — I literally jumped out of the van, shot & scurried back inside.  Not fast enough though — a policeman pointed a flashlight inside my van & made a face at me as I drove off and sort of waved.  Sheesh.

blog23

And appropriately, this is what I’ll be doing shortly:

blog22
Lots more shooting tomorrow.  Merced by day, Madera & lesser towns.  I’ll post the wrap-up on Monday or Tuesday.  Meanwhile, here are some other goodies which I posted from today at Flickr tonight:
https://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

dj & the dogs

 

San Diego Mega-Trip Wrap-up

Posted in Roadtrip on March 18, 2014 by roadsidenut

Alrighty then.  So here is a sampling of Sunday’s photos from this weekend’s driving & shooting marathon.  One of the reasons that I got to bed so late on Saturday & got into this mess of being behind on blog posts is this little sidetrip to El Centro.  It’s about two hours from San Diego.  So, rather than wasting four hours roundtrip, I thought it wise to drive there at night and only waste half the daylight shooting time.

So, this was shot when there was just barely enough light in the morning.  I guess they cut back on the 31 flavors at some point.  Now, it’s a water store below the sign.

blog1

 

Here are a couple of remaining signs on one of the downtown main streets.  The businesses are gone:

blog2

blog3

 

A very sad downtown — it just have been swinging at some point.   Here are some nice window display cases:

blog4

 

A couple more signs from El Centro.  Nice little jaggedy edges.  Maybe meant to look like those homemade-ish “house for sale” signs you stick in people’s lawns?

blog5

This oldie looks like it was restored in recent years.  Those stuck-on letters are probably original:

blog6

 

Moving on to the San Diego area — this sign from National City:

blog7

 

And these signs from Chula Vista:

blog8

Broadway Liquor:

blog9

 

I don’t know how much of this neon still works.  The neon on the facade is probably relatively new (guessing 1980s or so):

blog10

 
Plastic signs are so under-rated:

blog11

 

The El Patio gives us a pole sign and a facade sign — but I don’t know if either are still lit at night:

blog12

blog13

Most likely, some neon originally:

blog14

 

A Masonic Lodge with nice canopy details and neon sign:

blog15

blog16

 

A small sign said “since 1940″:

blog17

 

Across the street from Bob’s — I’m assuming this is an Irish bar?  Too bad I couldn’t get it to yesterday for St. Patrick’s Day:

blog18

 

While many of you are still dealing with snow and cold, it was in the 80s this past weekend in San Diego.  I decided to have a Shamrock Shake from McDonald’s.  I never eat at McDonald’s — but this was a nostalgic moment.  I haven’t had one of these in more than 30 years.  I don’t even remember it being minty.  I just like the color.  And it was refreshing and filling.  They didn’t serve it with the whipped cream back.  It was just a simple paper cup:

blog19

 

And on to San Diego proper for some more signs.  This must be the result of some really cheap paint used during a “restoration”.  A shame because this is a really old sign (1920s?):

blog20

 

I’ve never been able to figure out what this place with the circus theme was originally:

blog21

The clown terrazzo apron at the entrance:

blog22

 

This two-tone green paint job on this Art Deco building is just horrible, in my opinion.  And I like green.  But wouldn’t something lighter and fluffier be better?

blog23

 

Union Station was built in 1915 — an incredible interior:

blog24

blog25

and yes, a mammoth, double-sided neon sign on the roof.  I don’t believe it’s lit at night:

blog26

 

A couple of quick shots from the Automotive Museum in Balboa Park.  A gorgeous little NSU Spider:

blog27

And this thing — which looks fairly ordinary until you look inside and under the hood:

blog28

Some details on the sign next to the car — and some more info at this link:
http://sdautomuseum.org/exhibit/louis-mattars-fabulous-car

blog29

 

Okay, I’ll leave you with one more sign.  A modern but super fun one outlined with neon — with Mr. DUI and Mr. Ticket.  Don’t forget — you can click on all my photos for enlargements:

blog30

 

And if you want even more photos from this weekend, check out the sampling I put up at Flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

I’ll be home for a couple of weekends (busy adding photos to the website).  Then, the dogs and I will be heading up to the Fresno area for some more shooting.

Take care,

dj

San Diego Mega-Trip – Part I

Posted in Roadtrip on March 17, 2014 by roadsidenut

Normally, I do these Saturday roadtrip posts on Saturday night.  But this trip was so action-packed that I didn’t get settled until 11 pm.   Then, after a very busy of shooting on Sunday, I didn’t get home until 10:30 pm and then work today.  So, I’m now playing catch up.    I’ll get this post in tonight — and the other one tomorrow night.

I had a huge list and figured it would take at least two trips, possibly three to get it all done.  But with perfect weather and pushing myself, I got through the entire thing.  This means most of SoCal is officially wrapped up (except for some L.A. area stuff which I’ll get  to in conjunction with Nik eyeball checkups).  The next string of trips will focus on the Central Valley north of Fresno and the Bay Area south of San Francisco.

Let’s get to the photos — LOADS of them!  First, a couple of shots from my hometown of Ventura.  I drive by this one every night and have been meaning to shoot it.  Lots of patched & unpatched neon tubing holes.  I’m guessing this was probably not the original business name:

blog1

 

And a night photo of the Hong Kong Inn which just reopened with new owners a couple of weeks ago.  Evidently, the restaurant has also revived the “Polynesian Review” (dancers) on weekends:

blog2

 

Friday night’s destination was Oceanside.  A bummer that the Star Theatre was lit since nothing was going on there.  But I got to shoot this one before bedtime — with a nearly full moon.

blog3

 

This concession stand is at the Flower Fields in Carlsbad.  I assume it was inspired by Twistee Treat buildings:
http://www.agilitynut.com/food/twistee.html

blog4

 

More ice cream?  This is on the roof of the Oceans Ice Cream building in the Mission Bay section of San Diego:

blog5

 

Everything from here on out is from San Diego unless I say otherwise.  The Freaky Boutiki features this 3-D tiki figure on the side of its building:

blog6

There’s also a neon window sign:

blog7

 

This house (apartment?) appears to have been made from a trolley car — or at least simulates one:

blog8

blog9

 

I lived in various fourth floor “walkups” for nearly 30 years.  Not missing it at all.  I’m in a second floor apartment now which seems like nuthin.  This would be a nightmare with my four dogs:

blog10

 

I suspect from the tubing holes and the font style that this is a reworked sign.  Impossible to get a good shot during the day since it’s under billboard scaffolding.  Pretty at night though:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/25849022@N08/4323455776/

blog11

 

Nik is obsessed with sleeping in caves — tight, dark corners.  In my apartment, he likes to sleep in the linen closet.  Most of the time, on roadtrips, he wedges himself in the very back of the van in a corner with some blankets.  But on this trip, he discovered what I call the “bed of nails”.  A new cave in the passenger front seat floor where he sleeps on my stash of Diet Coke bottles.  It can’t be comfortable.  Note the squashed ear on the left.

blog12

 

I love the simulated trunk on this one:

blog13

A nice mural at the same motel:

blog14

 

Two kiosks on one corner.  The one on the right appears to be a former Fotomat.  The one on the left is a flower stand with a faux thatched roof:

blog15

 

A decent Art Deco building made great with the pastel paint job:

blog16

On the side of the building, some of my favorite cacti which add even more class.  Does anyone know the names of these?

blog17

blog18

 

A former Original House of Pies (now Lil B’s Urban Eatery):
http://www.flickr.com/photos/25082963@N02/2840367572

blog19

With an adapted sign:

blog20

 

This 1963 photo of JFK in a motorcade passing by Rudford’s is installed on the side of the building:

blog21

What the place looks like today:

blog22

blog22b

 

Two neon signs keeping each other company.  The Stern Gym sign is protected by clear plastic panels — but the sign wasn’t lit when I was there:

blog23

The arrow on the New Life Laundry sign flashes on and off:

blog23b

 

This one from Coronado — still nice even with the “Night & Day” not lit:

blog24

 

Back in San Diego for some more nighttime shooting:

blog25

blog26

blog27

blog30

 

These signs are modern but still pretty wonderful.  They decorate a shopping center.  This majorette is a nod to the Campus Drive-in sign — part of which was saved & is now located at another shopping center just down the block.  The baton on this sign also twirls:

blog28

I believe this represents the San Diego Mission:

blog29
Even more photos from Saturday at Flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut

And — stay tuned — some photos from Sunday here in tomorrow night’s post!

Quickie Trip to Templeton

Posted in Roadtrip on March 8, 2014 by roadsidenut

I’ve been itching to take a little two-hour trip up to Templeton to shoot a giant milk bottle which I found out about a few weeks ago.   Today’s forecast was for all-day sun and near 80 degrees — not a good day to sit at the computer.  After a few errands and a drastic haircut, I loaded up the dogs and camera and a list of stops.  Had to stop in Morro Bay for that doggie beach again.  It was just as wonderful the second time.

So, I’ve got some sign photos for you.  I do shoot other stuff on these trips (the buildings and statues) but my blog fans seem to like signs the most so that’s what I focus on here.

From Guadalupe — looks like a replica of the original jewelry store clock sign installed here in 1923.   The business is gone now.

blog1

 

Several signs from Santa Maria:

blog2

blog3

blog4

blog5

 

This drive-in in Santa Maria opened in 1960 — and is still going strong:

blog6

blog7

 

A few signs from Lompoc.  Gotta reshoot this one in the morning sometime when the sun is coming from the other direction:

blog8

Unfortunately, this IOOF sign is in a spot that probably never gets light:

blog9

I’ve shot these signs a few times — but not been lucky enough to see them in the afternoon from this side when the roof is out of the way and you can get them together:

blog10

 

Last stop in Buellton where the sun ran out.  This is the County Line Motel:

blog11
This was a good little test drive for next weekend.  Sparkle needed an ABS computer module which was a pricey $1500 and required 3 trips to the shop to get it right.  It was a relief to have no scary warning lights on the dash for a full day of driving.   Next weekend, if the forecast is sunny, the dogs and I will be heading down to San Diego.

More photos from today over at Flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

dj

More Sun! Santa Cruz and the Bay Area

Posted in Roadtrip on February 24, 2014 by roadsidenut

The dogs had fun running on the beach in Santa Cruz while I waited for the fog to lift.  The sun came out around 10 am and was with us all day long after that.  All that perfect-weather shooting made that five-hour drive home not quite as agonizing!  This was the first of many trips to the San Francisco Bay Area.  I can only afford maybe one trip up there per month, so it will take a while to finish this list.  If someone wants to drop a few grand in the donation bucket, it’ll get done much sooner!

On with Santa Cruz — I’ve got a big batch of signs to get things rolling.  This one was shot last night after my blog post was done:

blog1

The same sign by day:

blog1a

 

A faded beauty for the Plymouth Court (originally  a motel):

blog2

 

Most likely, went by another name originally.  Lit at night but I didn’t get a chance to shoot it:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/51035555243@N01/6730690315/

blog3

 

An institution in Santa Cruz — there since at least 1958:

blog4

 

A neon detail from The Jury Room bar:

blog5

 

More motel & apartment complex signs:

blog6

blog9

blog10

 

Here’s a clover modern sign on the side wall of Larry’s Photography — although the camera reference is probably lost on much of today’s younger generation:

blog11

 

This sign is at the Rip Curl surf shop.  I read somewhere that it was originally a grocery store sign:

blog12

 

A little strip mall sign — I don’t know how old this one is:

blog13

 

And one more sign from Santa Cruz:

blog14

 

It was nice to be at the Boardwalk before it opened and all the people were there — but I missed a chance to try these!

blog7

I’ve been told by the historical folks that the swiss cheese-hole fins on this Boardwalk building are “real” (vintage from at least 1967):

blog8

 

Moving on — this one in Boulder Creek:

blog15

 

And from Ben Lomond:

blog16

 

The city’s welcome sign:

blog17

 

And then on to the “Bay Area” — this sign in San Carlos (I believe the business is closed):

blog18

 

That should be enough neon overload to last you for a while!  But if not, there’s more signs, buildings & statues over at my Flickr stream from yesterday:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

The dogs and I will be hitting the road again in about three weeks.  Back down San Diego way for that one.

Cal Central Coast – Day 1

Posted in Roadtrip on February 22, 2014 by roadsidenut

The dogs and I are back on the road again this weekend.  A full day of glorious sun — the forecasters are promising more tomorrow.  Started shooting today in Morro Bay — where the dogs got a good run at a fantastic more-or-less legal dog beach.  I think it’s three miles long and a really wide packed sand beach.  Yeah, I know, shoulda brought the camera.

Lots of photos to share — let’s start with this one in Morro Bay.  These plastic oval Foster’s signs are even rarer than their earlier neon cousins.  More about Foster’s Freeze and lots of photos at my site here:
http://www.agilitynut.com/eateries/fosters.html

blog1

 

A couple of other great signs from Morro Bay:

blog2

blog3

 

Back inland for a bit.  This drug store in Soledad has one of those nice navy and orange neon Rexall signs:

blog4

It also has a nice under-canopy plastic sign:

blog5

And Rexall door pulls (that’s Sparkle’s reflection).  More Rexall signs from all over the country at my section here:
http://www.agilitynut.com/signs/rex.html

blog6

 

On to Salinas –

blog7

And the “star” of the Star Center — the neon is apparently still lit at night:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/85853333@N00/8421214616/

blog8

 

One more from Salinas:

blog9

 

From Hollister:

blog10

 

From Morgan Hill – a former Sno-White Drive-in.   The sign and building have been adapted.  More examples of these signs and building (and a photo of what this Morgan Hill sign looked like originally) at my site here:

http://www.agilitynut.com/eateries/cadi2.html

blog11

 

Also in Morgan Hill.  I have no idea how old this Punch statue is — probably not very — but I thought he was pretty neat.  He is located in front of a cigar store.  I think he would have held a cigar box in his right hand.  I have no idea what that indentation in his belly is about.  Evidently, there’s a history to these statues — an oldie here:
http://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/4279104

blog12

 

Some neat freestanding letters in Gilroy:

blog13

 

And just last weekend, I posted a Sofspra car wash sign from Encinitas here at this blog — declaring that I thought it was the last one of its kind.  Well, today, I bumped into this one in Watsonville.  So, that makes two:

blog14

This location has more intact looking stalls than the one in Encinitas:

blog15

 

This building was just across the street.  An indecipherable name on the sign.  I have no idea if this was the original occupant or if there were any others like this:

blog16

 

One more from Watsonville.  This rooftop sign is at the long-closed Cabrillo Lanes:

blog17

 

Let’s close out with another mystery — this one from Aptos.  Just north of the Sno-White Drive-in is this mid-century beauty.  It now houses the Ambrosia Indian Bistro (I was hungry and tempted — but opted for onion rings at the Sno-White).  I don’t know if that triangulated glass is original (most likely not).

blog20

Surely, this giant spoon sign in front of the place must provide a clue as to the original business name:

blog18

That’s it for today.   The dogs and I have settled in Santa Cruz for the night.  Some shooting here in the morning and then working our way up to San Jose, Redwood City and thereabouts.  A long journey home and then back to work on Monday.  I’ll post this weekend’s wrap-up then.  Until then, here are some more photos from today over at Flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut/

dj

San Diego Outskirts — Day 2

Posted in Roadtrip on February 17, 2014 by roadsidenut

Most of the “outskirts” stuff has been checked off the list for now.  The next trip down this way should be mostly San Diego focused.

The day started with pea soup fog so I treated the dogs to a leisurely morning at the Del Mar dog beach.  The weather was not much better even by noon but I went ahead and shot some things that I’ll wind up shooting again next time.

From Encinitas.  This was a nationwide self-serve car wash chain established in the 1960s.  However, this is the only sign that I know of that still exists.  The only other still-open location that I know of is in Rochester, NH.  However, that one has a boring, modern box sign.   I assume those balls on top of the sign must have been sequentially lit.  This night-time photo of a later sign (location unknown) shows what that embossed bit on the right next to the name probably looked like:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/83307323@N00/3369816318/

blog1

 

Also from Encinitas.  This modern 7-Eleven gas station convenience store was based on one of my favorite gas station designs:  the Mobil “drum”.  This Michigan station is gone now but it gives you a reference as to what these stations looked like originally:
http://www.daads.org/preservation/mobil.htm

This tribute station in Encinitas was built in 2007 as a Mobil station originally:
http://www.theleucadiablog.com/2007/04/new-gas-station-question-and-comment.html

blog1b

 

Thanks to the fog and some pranksters, I didn’t get to shoot the “Cardiff Kook” surfer station in Cardiff like I’d planned.  Next time.  Here’s some info about the statue:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cardiff_Kook

blog2

 

I was glad to see this Catalina Pools sign still standing next to I-8 in La Mesa.  The proximity to a building forced this arty angle:

blog3

 

Let’s close out with a couple of signs from San Diego.  I had to choose between glare or a tree on this one.  I went with the tree:

blog4

 

This sign was built in the 1950s for the Sheng Haw Low Cafe.  It has, thankfully, been declared a San Diego landmark.  The sign has been adapted a little bit by the VIP Restaurant and now for University Square.  The “and Shops” box at the bottom originally read “Fine Chinese American Food.”  I don’t believe the neon is lit anymore:

blog5

 

That’ll do it for this trip.  Don’t forget, there are a sampling of some other photos from this weekend over at Flickr:
http://www.flickr.com/photos/agilitynut

The dogs and I will be back on the road this coming weekend (if the weather looks decent).  We’ll be heading up to the San Jose area for that one.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 102 other followers