Wheeler Park Mural

I wish I could have been at the dedication of the new mural at Wheeler Park. At least I could see these photos of the ceremony, and I can go over and look at it when I want to.

Timothy Robert Smith

Painted by Timothy Robert Smith with help from Vista del Valle and ArtStart Students, the mural portrays kids at play in a cardboard boat and being attacked by a Kraken.

Mural Wheeler Park Claremont

Mural in progress


Mural Wheeler Park

Finished mural

Wheeler Park


Bookstores in Ventura County

During our weekend getaway we visited two bookstores, because, well, that’s how we do vacation. In Ventura we spent some time in The Calico Cat Bookshop and ended up buying a book of Gustav Klimt’s artwork.

Even though we didn’t buy any books at Bart’s Books in Ojai, we loved the ambiance. It’s an outdoor bookstore, like an open air market.


I’m sure there’s a plan about how to protect the books from rain, but it wasn’t obvious to the casual book browser.





Maybe I should have bought this book….


Rose Valley Falls

IMG_7241This is fall break at the Claremont Colleges, the weekend chosen to inaugurate Pomona College’s 10th president, Gabrielle Starr. I don’t have a post about the event, as we choose the weekend to get away. I’m sure it was one for the books.

You can read about it at my friend’s blog here.



Instead, we spent the day in and near Ojai, with a short hike (a stroll, really) in the Los Padres National Forest. Perusing a number of choices for hiking, we chose the one with the most shade as California weather has been hot and dry with the Santa Ana winds blowing.

Driving past Ojai, the coastal mountains were clear.


Around a bend we saw the smallest post office in the US. Aside from the closed antiques store next door, I didn’t see anything that might be called Wheeler Springs. We didn’t investigate, but I’m sure there’s civilization somewhere nearby.


The Rose Valley Falls Trailhead starts in a campground and traverses over a few small streams and through some shaded areas, enjoying what passes for fall colors in Southern California.


The falls were not large, but offered a cool spot on a hot day. I would certainly recommend it for families.



Cliff May Houses

IMG_7235Sunday’s Claremont Heritage Home Tour featured homes in the Towne Ranch Estates. Our suburban city, like so many in California, features many ranch style homes which came to prominence in the 50s.

Alan Hess gave a talk at the Garner House on Sunday about the history of the ranch house. He mentioned the architect Cliff May who designed a few houses on Butte Street.

I took a walk along Butte to see if I could figure out which ones were May houses, and these are the three I found. I like that all of them have native drought-tolerant landscaping.


ReForm Arts Festival

IMG_7222 copyThe new Arts Guild at Claremont UCC hosted their first event on Saturday. In celebration of the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, the Arts Festival theme of ReForm showcased local visual art as well as performing arts.





Martin Luther himself (and looking pretty good for being over 500 years old) showed up and marveled at all the changes in the church since his time.

Visual art ran the gamut from paintings, to sculpture and pottery, a mobile, and fabric arts.

Performances ranged from organ music to dance to a short story reading, piano improvisation and poetry reading (accompanied by recorder).


Biking Town

I’m almost done reading this fun book about the history of bikes in Amsterdam and one American’s integration into Dutch bike culture.

In the City of Bikes

It made me think about our times in Holland. (Obviously.)

There is no way that Claremont comes close to having a love affair with bikes the way the Dutch do, but I usually see bikes every day. The college students use them frequently.

There are some dedicated bikeways, but even a street like Foothill is wide enough for bikes and cars. (That doesn’t mean that drivers are especially kind to bikers, though.)

Once I saw this group of riders having a fun Sunday ride through the Village.

In 2011 the Amgen Tour of California came through town. That was exciting!

Claremont AmgenAmgen Claremont

But usually we don’t have need for signs such as these which we saw all over Holland.

Geen Fietsen

Don’t you dare put your bike here!

Pomona College Ballet Fountain

In Claremontography’s last report of Pomona College Fountains, it was lamented that the ballet fountain was no longer there. But, joy of joys, it has returned! Not quite as a fountain, but the lovely dancing sculpture is back.

It remains the centerpiece in the courtyard between the Art Museum and the Thatcher Music Building, along with these other works of art.