Seniors Venture Into Moundsville

banner_mound_sepred Moundsville, a small town in Marshall County nestled in the northern panhandle of scenic West Virginia is a growing community rich in heritage and history. Seniors learn that its name comes from the many Adena Indian burial mounds constructed more than 2000 years ago.


Moundsville was settled in 1771 by Samuel & James Tomlinson. Elizabethtown, as Tomlinson’s community was called, was incorporated in 1830. Nearby, the town of Mound City was incorporated in 1832. The two towns combined in 1865.

Fostoria Glass Company, specializing in hand blown glassworks, was headquartered in Moundsville from 1891 to 1986. The retired West Virginia State Penitentiary operated in Moundsville from 1867 to 1995 and has been placed on the National Historic Register.


 Senior Travelers Find Burial Mounds

Moundsville is home to the largest conical burial mound in North America. The area is not only a land of sacred pasts, but of promising futures. The town is a melting pot of fine education, a strong blue-collar workforce, bountiful heritage and beautiful landscapes. 

The Grave Creek Mount Archeological Complex is well worth a visit. The heart of the site is the most famous and certainly the largest of the Adena Burial mounds. A massive undertaking, construction of the mound required the movement of more than 60,000 tons of earth.


Construction of the mound took place in successive stages from about 250-150 B.C., as indicated by the multiple burials at different levels within the structures.

In 1838, road engineers measured its height at 69 feet and its diameter at the base at 295 feet. Originally a moat of about 40 feet in width and five feet in depth with one causeway encircled it.

I always wonder who figures out stats like that. Artifacts and exhibits interpreting the lifestyle of the Adena people are displayed in the Delf Norona Museum, adjacent to the 2,000 year old mound. The Museum opened in December 1978 and is a thoroughly modern facility and an architectural tribute to a prehistoric era.


 Seniors Visit A Theater and a Toy Museum

The Strand Theater is another must see site in Moundsville that has its first opening back in November 1920. The first pictures featured were Norma Talmadge in “The Branded Woman” and Fatty Arbuckle in “The Garage.” Remember Fatty? Admission prices were 17 cents and 33 cents.

If you bring along grandkids, plan to enjoy the Marx Toy Museum as the company became the “largest manufacturer of toys in the world.”


Up on McCreary’s Ridge Road you will find Prabhupada’s Palace of Gold that is reminiscent of a heavenly kingdom.

High atop the Appalachian foothills, healthy mountain air carries the sweet fragrance of countless garden flowers and is home to one of the 100 top award-winning rose gardens in the country.

The Palace is rated as one of the 8 religious wonders to see in the U.S. by CNN.

So set your GPS for Moundsville and enjoy all that it offers along with some awesome West Virginia scenery. -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel, United States


Seniors Enjoy A Stop In Chandler

Chandler-Chandler-Sign-e1401139163989This senior pours over the daily sports page of our local paper here in The Valley (Phoenix) and today it featured the football team of Chandler High School. The Wolves are rated #1 among the 17 teams in the Arizona Interscholastic Association. Right behind them is Chandler Hamilton.

Chandler is a prominent suburb of the Phoenix area. The population runs just over a quarter of a million. The city is loaded with technology companies, including huge firms like Intel and Orbital ATK, an aerospace manufacturer and defense industry company.


Thumb through the many links on the homepage and you will note that it is a city full of amenities that attract senior visitors from all across the nation, many of them ‘snowbirds’.

 Seniors Find Canals, History and A Veterionary Surgeon

The City of Chandler was founded in 1912 and incorporated in 1920. Since its early beginnings Chandler has been a vibrant, diverse community, loaded with history. In 1891, Dr. Alexander Chandler, the first veterinary surgeon for the territory of Arizona, bought 80 acres of land from the federal government south of Mesa in the Salt River Valley.

Dr. Chandler was instrumental in building an early system of canals in what was then an arid desert. Thus, today we have Chandler, Arizona.


Trip Advisor is high on the Zelma Basha Salmeri Gallery, the Koli Equestrian Center and Tumbleweed Park. Mayor Jay Tibshraeny welcomes you to the City of Chandler and notes that Chandler is a progressive, cutting-edge city where entrepreneurial spirit and hometown traditions create a truly dynamic destination.

Chandler offers many dining choices, unique shops and galleries, outdoor recreation and other local amenities.

 Seniors Discover Chandler Center For The Arts

Chandler’s convenient and relatively isolated location makes it extremely popular with area families. Its modern downtown includes plenty of shopping as well as entertainment venues like the Chandler Center for the Arts. Hosting live performances by the London City Opera to Jay Leno, the 64,000 square-foot Center is the hub of Chandler’s cultural scene.

Chandler_AZ_downtownI counted ten museums in Chandler and each of them is outstanding. The San Marcos Hotel and the Silk Stocking Neighborhood are historic landmarks in Chandler of interest to senior visitors.

A Desert Botanical Garden is a big draw on 50 acres with an extensive collection of desert plants, showcasing more than 130 rare plant families and over 21,000 total plants.

Toss the clubs in the trunk  and play a round or two on the first golf resort in Arizona, opened in 1913. San Marcos offers 6,626 yards of golf on fairways lined with mature tamarisk and palm trees. Seniors, have you ever see a Tamarisk tree? 

Welcome to Chandler with ZERO snow days and 53 developed parks all in a 70 square mile area. -jeb


 Seniors Stop In Lihue


From my experience, a bus tour is always the best means to get to know an area prior to going out on one’s own. And this is what these senior travelers did when we went to Kaua’i for our 52nd wedding anniversary. We saw the island by bus our first day.

A major attraction on the island is the Grand Canyon of the Pacific, the Waimea Canyon. Wai in Hawaiian means water, mea is red, so Waimea means reddish water. One sees wai a lot all over the Hawaiian Islands.


Upon our arrival in Kaua’i, we landed in Lihue, Kaua’i’s capital city (6,500). Lihue is served by the island’s only airport, making it the most popular port of entry to Kauai and a hub of industry on this small island.

Grove Farm Attracted These Seniors

One of the highlights of Lihue was a two-hour walking tour of the Grove Farm Homestead. Founded in 1864, this 100-acre sugar plantation museum provides a fascinating look into Kauai’s plantation past. Our guide was an elderly, highly knowlegable woman who talked non-stop as we trooped around the grounds visiting  several old buildings including a mansion that were part of a one-time sugar plantation.


The Kaua’i Museum was another good stop for us, featuring amazing collections from the artisans of Kauai.

Near the Sheraton was a historic community called Koloa that provided these seniors a stroll along old buildings each marked with plaque telling the role of the structure years back. Chickens were on the boardwalk and seemed to be at home and not bothered by our presence.


No trip to Kaua’i would be complete without a visit to Wailua Falls, just north of Lihue being a step off the beaten path. Located at the south end of the Wailua River, it cascades into two streams, dropping 80-feet below. Some say the distance is more accurately described as 200 feet. As part of our bus tour we took a boat trip up the Wailua River to the Fern Grotto.

 Chickens Chickens Everywhere

In a Koloa art gallery a woman told us the story of the feral chickens that roam freely everywhere on the island. It is considered a crime to harm a chicken. Nearby I saw a tee shirt that read: Frickin Chickens. She also told us about the Kilohana Plantation Estate, a restored sugar plantation estate in Lihue and home of Gaylord and Ethyl Wilcox. They say that this estate is perhaps Kauai’s most unique and gracious visitor destination.


This historic landmark has become a showplace for Kauai’s agricultural history. We took part in a Kaua’i rum tasting event and enjoyed walking around the grounds among the hundreds of exotic native trees and flowering shrubs.

TripAdvisor has a listing of 43 things to do in Lihue. The Beckers could go on and on about Kaua’i but we would like you to experience the Garden Island for yourself. It is unique indeed.  So Aloha and Mahalo to my senior friends. -jeb


These Two Seniors Explored Kaua’i


I’ve always felt as an Editor that being onsite gave one a distinct advantage over reading about a site.  That’s us. My wife and I celebrated our 52nd wedding anniversary on Kaua’i in September. These seniors had been to Hawai’i twice before but never to Kaua’i.

Part of the Hawaiian archipelago, Kaua’i is the last large island of the chain. It’s nicknamed “the Garden Island”  thanks to the tropical rainforest covering much of its surface. The dramatic cliffs and pinnacles of its Na Pali Coast on the north shore have served as backdrop for major Hollywood films, while 10-mile-long Waimea Canyon and the Nounou Trails traversing the Sleeping Giant ridge are hiking destinations.


Kaua’i is green everywhere with a world record of 400 inches of rain in parts of the island. This video captures the flavor of Kaua’i with all the hiking trails, waterfalls and amazing green scenery in every direction.

These Seniors Spent Time At The Botanical Garden

My wife and I visited a well known Botanical Garden on the north shore called Limahuli in a 1,000 acre valley. Limahuli means “turning hands” in Hawaiian, and was one of the first places on Kauai settled by ancient Hawaiians.


We saw remnants of original houses built high up on the side of the mountain. The Garden is known as a living Hawaiian landscape through a native forest walk. It allowed these seniors to learn about ancient Hawaiian plants and culture in the spectacular beauty of their natural setting.

Set in a lush tropical valley, surrounded by towering peaks, sculpted by eons of wind and rain, Limahuli Garden offered visions of incomparable natural beauty and intriguing antiquity. We stepped into a place where ancient knowledge blends with contemporary practices.


Limahuli Beacons Senior Travelers

These seniors enjoyed the two hour walk, reading the different plaques identifying the plant, tree or shrub we were viewing. We learned a lot about kalo (taro to many) that was a chief food to Hawaiian people for generations.  They still eat poi today made from the corm of the plant. The site is watered by the Limahuli Stream, a virtually pristine stream, one of the few remaining in Hawai’i.


We spent six days in Kaua’i, took a bus tour of the island, an airplane ride over the island, and thoroughly enjoyed exploring the island in a rental car. We stayed at the Sheraton Kaua’i resort near  Poi’pu, perhaps the most famous beach in Kaua’i. We enjoyed a luau right on the beach and we meandered over to the nearby Grand Hyatt for a mai tai and enjoyed seeing that famed resort.

The Beach House is “the place to dine” on the south shore, and we discovered another restaurant right next to the Sheraton called Keoki’s Paradise. Hawaiian Airlines took us direct from Phoenix to Honolulu and on to Lihue. Meet you tomorrow in Lihue.  jeb




Seniors Enjoy Mushroom Capital

03-water-towerKennett Square (pop.  6,000) is a borough in Chester County, Pennsylvania that senior travelers will find along Hwy 1. The name comes from “Kennet”, England, and “Square” from the original land grant from William Penn of one square mile.

Known as the Mushroom Capital of the World, mushroom farming in the region produces over a million pounds of mushrooms a week. That would be reason enough for yours truly to spend quality time with my wife, (a “portabello hound”), in Historic Kennett Square learning all about the various kinds of mushrooms. This past New Year’s Eve, they dropped an 800 pound stainless steel mushroom from a crane in lieu of a ball.

Kennett Square hosts an annual Mushroom Festival on the weekend after Labor Day. I learned that over 65% of the mushrooms consumed in the United States are grown on site.  Over 100,000 visitors come from all over the country take part in this “Small Town America” Festival.

Seniors Find A Revitalized Town


Historic Kennett Square is a downtown revitalization model developed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation in 1980.

Kennett Square’s founder is credited with introducing mushroom growing to the area. He grew carnations, a popular local commodity around 1885, and wanted to make use of the wasted space under the elevated beds. He imported spawn from Europe and started experimenting with mushroom cultivation. It all went uphill from there.

My botanical friends and I would head to Longwood Gardens that consists of over 1,000 acres of gardens, woodlands, and meadows in Kennett Square. It is one of the premier botanical gardens in the country.


It is open year-round so senior visitors can enjoy exotic plants and horticulture, events and performances, seasonal and themed attractions, as well as take part in educational lectures, courses, and workshops. It is one classy place. I am confident that my botanist brother Steve knew of this famous garden.

 Seniors Visit A Mushroom Farm

TripAdvisor suggests that after the gardens, senior visitors check out Galer Estate Vineyard and Winery on Folley Hill Road. The Anson B. Nixon Park is a another hidden gem nestled just north of town where a free summer concert series is held on Wednesday evenings. On 106 acres, the Park was carved out of the historic woodlands of the late 18th through early 20th century Chambers Estate.


The natural setting includes two ponds, meandering streams, woodlands including a beech grove with specimens dating back over 250 years, and three miles of walking trails. Bring along your hiking boots and toss in your clubs for a round or two at the Kennett Square Golf & Country Club.

Hike on over to the Phillips Mushroom Farms, the largest grower of specialty mushrooms in the US. Bring a cooler and pick up several kinds of quality mushrooms. That’s what I call a “practical edible souvenir.”  Senior travelers, enjoy Kennett Square. -jeb


Seniors Fall In Love With Warsaw


Dzien’ dobry.  I recently read in a Travel & Experience section of our local Sunday paper that Warsaw is considered to be vibrant and trendy and a great place for a visit. Senior friends, get your coffee and let’s go to Warsaw today see why it is gathering so much attention in the travel world.

I learned  that Warsaw is the sprawling capital of Poland with a population or nearly 2 million. It has been on the rise since Poland joined the EU in 2004. Senior visitors soon find out that the old is combined with the new throughout the city.

Its widely varied architecture, from Gothic churches and neoclassical palaces to Soviet-era blocks and modern skyscrapers, reflects the city’s long, turbulent history. As Poland’s cultural hub, Warsaw has a thriving nightlife and music scene, both classical and underground.


Seniors Enjoy Poland’s Capital City

Warsaw, with over 400 years of pride as a capital, is Poland’s largest city and an economic, political, and cultural center. The symbol of the city is the Mermaid, featured on the city seal. You will find mermaids all over the city.

Warsaw is a bustling metropolis and features an unforgettable history. A city where a fourth of the terrain is covered by parkland and a city of culture for all tastes and budgets. Most of Warsaw’s tourist attractions are on the left or western bank of the Vistula River.


Lonely Planet notes that once you’ve travelled around Poland, you realize this: Warsaw is different. Rather than being centered on an old market square, the capital is spread across a broad area with diverse architecture: restored Gothic, communist concrete, modern glass and steel.

This jumble is a sign of the city’s tumultuous past. Warsaw has suffered the worst history could throw at it, including virtual destruction at the end of World War II – and survived.

Senior Visitors Eat Their Way Through Town


This senior would head out first for The Warsaw Old Town, one of the most prominent tourist attractions and the oldest part of the capital city and also a World Heritage Site.

During the Warsaw Uprising in August 1944, more than 85% of Warsaw’s historic center was destroyed by Nazi troops. After the war, a five-year reconstruction campaign by its citizens resulted in today’s meticulous restoration of the Old Town, with its churches, palaces and market-place.

For you senior gourmet folks, they say that you can “eat your way through town.” Take a look at the Top Ten Attractions in Warsaw by My Destination. Enjoy your time in Warsaw. You will come away with  many fond memories and maybe even pick up a few words in Polish. Do widzenia -jeb


Seniors Spring Into The “Art City”

Welcome_to_Springville_on_State_Rd Springville, Utah is part of the Provo-Orem Metropolitan Statistical Area. The population runs right at 30,000.  Senior travelers will find Springville just a few minutes drive south of Provo.

Springville is a bedroom community for commuters who work in the Provo-Orem and Salt Lake City metropolitan area. It is a city on the move. In 1849 the City was originally named Hobble Creek, but as the town grew, the name was changed to Springville and was incorporated on February 13, 1853.

Springville is known as “Art City” due to its strong development of the arts. It is home to the Springville Museum of Art, Utah’s oldest museum for the visual fine arts (circa 1937). The museum showcases collections of many well-known artists, both local and national, including collections of Utah art, a major Soviet collection, early Americana, and the European Steed collection.


Completed in 1937, this building was designed in the style of the Spanish Colonial Revival style by architect Claud S. Ashworth. In 1986 it was placed on the National Register of Historic Places.  That’s where this senior would go first on my visit to Springville… I love those historic sites.

 Seniors Enjoy Jack-O-Lanterns

Jaker’s Jack-O-Lanterns is a fun destination for folks of all ages, including seniors. In their  giant pumpkin patch and you pick your own pumpkin or choose one from the stand. This year a pumpkin tower is being introduced.


 The Springville – Mapleton Daughters of Utah Pioneers Museum is a spot in town where senior visitors can enjoy learning about the town’s history.

Utah Valley is loaded with free things to take in all year long. Springville Travel information and resources in Utah County Utah state that the state of Utah is unique with its variety of landscapes, geology, and recreational activities.

Senior Golfers Find Championship Course


The most notable geographical feature of Utah County is Utah Lake, the largest natural freshwater lake in Utah. While the national parks are considered national treasures, there are many more places to see and things to do that are just as amazing and certainly less crowded.

At the Springville Utah website you can discover and explore some of Utah’s most famous attractions and the perhaps lesser known yet worth a visit sites nearby.

The Hobble Creek Golf Course features an 18 Hole Championship Golf Course, so toss your clubs in the trunk and play a round or two in Springville. In addition, the Springville Historical Society does a great  job of preserving Springville’s Past.

Enjoy the mountains, the beauty of Utah and the friendly folks of Springville . -jeb


Seniors Come To Bridgeport

1788698_f496There are many things I do not know about our great country, like all the major cities in the US. I checked this AM and discovered that in Connecticut, was Bridgeport. Senior travelers, let’s check Bridgeport, Connecticut out.

Bridgeport is the most populous city in the state of Connecticut. Located on the Pequonnock River and Long Island Sound, the city had a population of 144,229 in the 2010 Census. The city is the core of the Greater Bridgeport area and part of the Greater New York City Combined Statistical Area.

History has played an important part in the development of Bridgeport. Bridgeport was first settled in 1665. The town was incorporated in 1821 from Stratford and Fairfield; the city was chartered in 1836, and the two were immediately consolidated.


Seniors Find Large City, Small Town Feel

Connecticut’s largest city is, in many ways, a small town with a sense of community, neighborhood spirit, and traditional values. In recent years, Bridgeport CT has undergone a revitalization and is now home to the Bridgeport Bluefish, the University of Bridgeport and the headquarters of People’s Bank.

800px-DiscoveryMuseumBPTLet’s check and see what TripAdvisor has in mind for visiting seniors.  Always helpful and full of suggested things to see and do, they really like the Seaside Park, the Beardsley Zoo and Adventure Park.

I think I would enjoy spending some quality time at the Discovery Museum and Planetarium. The Discovery Museum functions as both a tourist attraction featuring science and space science exhibits and as an informal science education center.

Bridgeport CT – 100 Years in 10 Minutes for senior travelers who want a quick review of the fascinating history of the city. Seniors, set your GPS for Bridgeport and enjoy all the amenities that the city has awaiting for you. -jeb

Filed under : Family Travel, United States


Seniors Enjoy Historic Wickenburg

DocumentWelcome to Wickenburg, a town of 6,500 residents primarily located in Maricopa County, Arizona, with a portion in neighboring Yavapai County. Senior travelers will find the town 60 minutes northwest of Phoenix.

The Wickenburg area with much of the Southwest became part of the United States by the 1848 treaty that ended the Mexican-American War. A German named Henry Wickenburg was one of the first prospectors. His efforts were rewarded with the discovery of the Vulture Mine, from which more than $30 million worth of gold has been dug.


Ranchers and farmers soon built homes along the fertile plain of the Hassayampa River (a Yavapai term meaning “river that runs upside down”).  Together with miners, they founded the town of Wickenburg in 1863.

This is one loaded site so bring up the links at the top that provide a nice overview of the town. Find the Travel Guide and flip through the pages and then view the Photo Gallery of Wickenburg, a town full of western history. I enjoyed reading the names of the various sites and restaurants in town.

 Seniors Visit The Western Museum


Wickenburg’s Desert Caballeros Western Museum is renowned for “Cowgirl Up,” the country’s most important annual showcase for female artists of the West. Several tours are available that are well worth your time as they provide an insight that you might miss on your own, especially the many older historic homes.

The local Wickenburg Chamber of Commerce promotes the town with  annual events  that pack the town: a Bluegrass Festival, A Cowboy Poetry Gathering, the annual Christmas Parade of Lights and the Gold Rush Days featuring a Senior Pro Rodeo.

The National Senior Pro Rodeo Association circuit is designed for cowhands aged 40 and older. One can expect familiar rodeo events like barrel racing, roping and bull and bronc riding.

Seniors Enjoy The West’s Most Western Town


It is said that Wickenburg, Arizona is arguably The West’s Most Western Town, where the air is clean and the cowboy lifestyle endures. Senior visitors will discover everything from a dude ranch, great golf, horseback riding and art & culture with the annual festivals.

Arizona Leisure notes that like so many Arizona towns, the rich mining history of Wickenburg, Arizona is a testament to the hardy resolve of the gold rush dreamers who flocked to the area in the 1800s, searching for their share of the greatest riches ever known.

What sets Wickenburg apart however from other early Arizona mining camps is its location near the lush and fertile Hassayampa River, giving the region a storied reputation both as a gold mine mecca and agricultural promise land.

My wife and I drive through Wickenburg on our way to Las Vegas and have stopped to enjoy some fine southwest food. It’s a neat town for a visit all year long. -jeb


Seniors Drive Southeast To Find Richland

29RichlandRichland is a city in the southeastern part of the State of Washington, at the confluence of the Yakima and the Columbia Rivers. The population runs just over 51,000. Seniors might think that the soil in Washington was very rich, thus the name.

Actually in 1904–1905, W.R. Amon and his son Howard purchased 2,300 acres and proposed a town site on the north bank of the Yakima River. Postal authorities approved the designation of this town site as Richland in 1905, naming it for Nelson Rich, a state legislator and land developer.

The city is blessed with a rich history and today the city is getting a facelift one building at a time.  From new construction to revamping the old, a rejuvenated downtown Richland is taking shape. “Other cities have inherited decaying downtowns and wondered how to revive them. We’re trying to create one,” said the Mayor .


Seniors Enjoy Award Winning Winery

Among the many things senior visitors can enjoy is the Howard Amon Park with 45.91 acres, located along the Columbia River. The Art in the Park Show is an annual fundraiser brimming with artist booths. The Empress of the North is docked at Howard Amon Park and is ready for senior visitors to board.

The Barnard Griffin Winery on Tulip Lane, founded in 1983 by Rob Griffin and Deborah Barnard, has been producing award-winning wines for over 30 years. Barnard Griffin is the premier family owned winery, one of the largest and one of the oldest in Washington state. For senior oenophiles, the winery is an essential stop on any tour of Washington’s best wineries.

Apple orchards are loaded with Washington’s best all around the Richland area.


Seniors Drawn to The Columbia River Area

The Hanford Reach Interpretive Center, (REACH) is a hybrid institution-part interpretive center, part museum, and part visitor center, developed to celebrate and learn about the natural and cultural history of the Columbia River and greater Columbia Basin.


The recreational facilities on the beautiful Columbia River abound. So pack a picnic basket and enjoy the air along the river. Richland is one of three cities in Washington State that make up the Tri-Cities region. The Gold Coast Historic District is highly popular with senior visitors who enjoy a good stroll past classic old homes.

Richland is rich in history, produce and wine and offers an abundance of activities both indoors and out. The pleasant weather brings golfers of all skill levels to the fine courses that make golf one of the most popular sports in and around Richland. For the Beckers, I think my wife and I would enjoy hopping aboard one of the popular river cruises that depart from Richland to explore the rest of the Tri-Cities region. -jeb

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