Thursday, September 30, 2010

They Saved Paradise... and Unpaved a Parking Lot

With apologies to Joni Mitchell.

Discovery Green, located on the south side of downtown, is a 12-acre park created in 2008 out of what were originally concrete surface parking lots. Fountains (see yesterday’s post), a lake complete with remote control boat rentals, gardens, bandstands for free public performances, dog runs and other recreational areas give Houstonians a place to “get away” in the shadow of downtown.

This image is of Margo Sawyer’s “Synchronicity of Color” which, coincidently, is the cover for the exits to the UNDERGROUND parking lot.

Joni Mitchell would be proud.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Splish Splash

The Gateway Fountain in Discovery Green is a series of water sprays that create an interactive waterscape.

While almost peaceful in this image... during the summer it is an escape from the heat for any child (or adult) to prance through.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Shipley's Do-Nuts

A Houston tradition since 1936, Shipley’s is still a family operated business today, with over 220 stores across the southern U.S. (146 of those are in the Houston area alone).

It is a rare weekend that passes that I, myself don’t partake in the light melting texture of a simple glazed doughnut from this establishment.

Is it snack time yet?

Monday, September 27, 2010

Watch Your Step...

IMG_8819, originally uploaded by lc_db.

Seriously. I'm not so sure I want to know what is behind Door No. 1, are you?

This grand example of proper planning was seen on the concourse in Rice Stadium.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Williams Tower

File this in the “Everything Is Big in Texas ” file.

The Williams Tower is one of Houston ’s most visible buildings. Odd thing is… it’s not located downtown, rather in the uptown area across the street from the posh Galleria shopping center. While only the 80th tallest building in the world, it IS the tallest building outside of a central business district with its 64 stories measuring 277m (909 ft).

It’s not enough that it is the tallest structure for miles, at night its 7000 watt rotating beacon can be seen for up to 40 miles.

Weather permitting, of course… your mileage may vary.

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Arches, Arches Everywhere

Lovett Hall was the first building constructed on the campus of Rice University in 1912, and gives a very old world feel to its atmosphere for higher learning. Most people are aware of the academic credentials of Rice, but here’s a little tidbit most people don’t realize.

According to the website, Jon’s World o’ Squirrels, Rice boasts a “five-squirrel ranking” The campus squirrel listings states, “The quality of an institution of higher learning can often be determined by the size, health, and behavior of the squirrel population on campus.”

Friday, September 24, 2010

I Like Beer

…but not as much as this guy.

Beginning in 1968, spanning almost 20 years and utilizing over 50,000 cans of beer, John Milkovisch created his own piece of eclectic Houston Folk Art. Simply know as The Beer Can House, it is located amongst recent new build homes between Memorial Dr and Washington Ave.
All I can say is… Cheers, John!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010


Houston actually has two distict Chinatown areas. South of downtown is the original or "Old Chinatown" where this temple, the Pien Hou Taoist Temple resides. Open to the public, it allows one to experience a completely different way of worship.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Woman's City Club

IMG_9538, originally uploaded by lc_db.

Centered inside the gazebo, as a part of the Bloch Cancer Survivors' Plaza is this fountain, which has obviously been “re-used”. Unfortunately, I am unable to find any history on its origin.

Still… it does provide a serene getaway in an otherwise busy city.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Birds In Flight

Ah… a sign of autumn??

Hardly, seeing that we still are having high temperatures over 90º here. However, these silhouettes on the playground equipment in Discovery Green give the illusion it’s on its way.

I sure hope so.

Monday, September 20, 2010

If Today Is Monday...

Then it must be Palm in a Pyramid Day!!!

What? Does not every large city have one of these? This perfect specimen is brought to us by the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Are You the Key Master?

Sitting atop the hill that overlooks Miller Outdoor Theater in Herman Park is this handsome fellow.

Created by Hannah Stewart, "Atropos Key" provides an interesting backdrop to those that attend the free concerts and play that occur here.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Like a Boy Scout... Always Be Prepared!

With the Northern Atlantic hurricane season in full percolation, and three named storms brewing… it’s always good to know your escape route should the need arise.

The upper Texas coast is in no danger, but the memories of Ike in 2008 and the scare of Rita (on the heels of Katrina) in 2005 are still there serving a constant reminder that…

You NEVER fool with Mother Nature!!!

Friday, September 17, 2010


I have a proclivity for bench images... I’m weird that way.

This one has a great vantage point of the skyline and is in a prime people-watching spot in Eleanor Tinsley Park.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Dogs Need Water, Too

Houston's first Dog Park was opened in 2002, and since then, the number has grown to 20 fenced areas allowing all sorts of canine off-leash fun, some even including swimming ponds.

Make sense that they would also provide this doggie water fountain, which was seen at the recently opened T.C. Jester Dog Park.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dancing Waters

IMG_9295, originally uploaded by lc_db.

The Gus & Lyndall Wortham Park is located at the busy intersection of Holcombe and Main in the Texas Medical Center, and very well might go unnoticed to most Houstonians.

It is the perfect getaway from a busy day. Shaded benches, moving waters... just typing this makes me want to take a nap.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Gulf Building

This is the main entrance to the JP Morgan Chase building on Main St. in downtown. Originally the Gulf Building (I still call it this), it was completed in 1929 and until 1963 was the tallest building in Houston. One of only two Art Deco skyscrapers in Houston, it still is a vibrant part of the skyline today.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Someone Paid Attention...

To yesterday's post!!!

These obviously life long Houston Texans fans were in top form, leading the cheering frenzy as the hometown NFL team won its 2010 opening day game yesterday. Unleash the spirit, indeed!!!

Of course… it IS much easier to do when your team wins.

These two were almost as entertaining as the game itself. Almost.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


American football’s NFL season started this week, and today the local Houston Texans have their first game.

This rather unique form of light gray stencilled advertising has been showing up on sidewalks and pavements all over town the last several weeks. Quite clever actually… unless you step out into traffic while reading it.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

September Eleven

I pondered what today’s post should reflect. I supposed I might have chosen something with flags waving in the breeze, but instead selected one that depicts rebuilding and reclamation.

Today’s image comes from the Japhet Creek Dis(solve) Project, a volunteer initiative meant to recapture green space along the forgotten creeks that feed Buffalo Bayou.

These small iron letters, mounted to the underside of a bridge in Houston’s Fifth Ward ask us to “Wonder”… and that’s all we can do today.

Friday, September 10, 2010

There's No Place Like Gnome...

In a courtyard outside One Allen Center in downtown Houston is this quirky display of public art. "Disappearing Gnomes" is brought to us by artist Paul Kittleson, adding perhaps just a little bit of levity to a busy work day.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Riding the Rails

Any large city will have areas that people shy away from, for whatever their reasons. They will undergo “urban decay” and then perhaps “revitalized”. Occasionally, I like to take the road less travelled and this photo comes from one of those urges.

Located near Jensen and U.S. 59, this is one of my favorite images.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Downtown Fountain

In the shadow of the Chevron buildings at the intersection of Smith and Clay streets the Bob and Vivian Smith Fountain gives downtown employees a place to relax and possibly enjoy their lunch.

Weather permitting, of course.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

No Bones About It

Sorry... this is not a new archeological find on the banks White Oak bayou, but rather a very unique playground on the grounds of Travis Elementary School in the Heights area.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Big Cactus Fountain

Clever title, don't you think?

Tucked off the beaten path, near the intersection of Washington and Houston Ave. in the city’s historic sixth ward is this very large cactus-shaped water fountain. Standing over 20 ft. tall, there is not much that can be found as to its creator or history, but I still think it is one of the coolest things I have stumbled across while out with the camera.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Jones Hall

Home to the Houston Symphony and he Society of the Performing Arts, Jones Hall has been the center point of downtown’s Theater District since 1966. Architectually classic with its curved marble façade and rectangle columns, it was chosen for the American Institute of Architects' Honor Award in 1967.

A gift to the city from its namesake Jesse H. Jones, it stands as a monument to his works fashioning the city to what it is today.

I’ll spare you the history lesson… just enjoy the beauty that is Jones Hall.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

The U.K. comes to U.K.

Seems over the last several years certain areas of town have become more identity conscious. Uptown, midtown, near town have become more defined and marketed as such. Twenty-plus years ago the area sandwiched between River Oaks, West University and Greenway Plaza had no name… and thus was born Upper Kirby.

Using the abbreviation UK, they have cleverly utilized several Royal Post Boxes and signature red phone booths to enhance their newfound identity.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Red Swing Project

The Red Swing Project is an urban phenomenon that places a red swing in an unfamiliar place. In several places throughout the world, swings are anonymously hung… just to see how the public will react to them.

We have one here in town, located across the street from The Menil Collection in the Museum District.

Sorry… no photos exist of me trying out this particular example.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Buffalo Bayou Promenade

Buffalo Bayou runs through the heart of the city and now is home for the Buffalo Bayou Promenade. Thirty years ago, no one would ever think of walking its banks, but now after millions of dollars of private funding, it is a revitalized section of town as it is now used for live music performances, a place for public art and sculptures and a destination for canoeing (if you dare), as well as, jogging and cycling.

This “torch” is part of the promenade and labels where the bayou crosses underneath Interstate 45, just west of downtown. It is visible from both the walkways below and the freeway above.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Alkek Fountain

A moment of splendor in the busy Texas Medical Center. This is the Alkek Fountain in front of the Roy & Lillie Cullen Building giving those walking near the Baylor College of Medicine of brief respite in their otherwise busy day.