The Things I Find

Quite a few folks that see my varied posts and ride pics remark that I find the oddest stuff. It’s true, I do.

But odd in a good way, I think.

Some are appalled by the creepiness of some of my pics. Like this one…


Clowning Around


And this one…

Cool Elf (or Pixie)


Others are weirded out by my photobomb-like selfies.

Keeping Selfies Interesting
Keeping Selfies Interesting


But I’ve never found clowns to be creepy. Or elves. I just think they’re fun. Same goes for photo-bombing my own pics. LOL.

Some people don’t understand why I bother to capture these oddities. A moto-blogger pal, Darlene (aka Princess Scooterpie), who lives on Vancouver Island in Bristish Columbia, Canada, captured it well in a recent post on her blog:

“I love it when I am out riding and spot something that catches my attention and makes me pull a u-turn and go back and look, I am more apt to do this on the bike ย than when I am in the car. ย I think blogging has a lot to do with this, we bloggers are always looking for the eclectic, interesting and appealing blog subjects.”

It’s true. Imagine how dull my blog posts would be if I just said something like, “I did about 150 miles, ate breakfast, and saw this cool collection of parade stuff.”


โ€œOh the things you can find if you donโ€™t stay behind!”
— Dr. Seuss

My recent visit to American Celebration on Parade. To me, anyway. I’ve known vaguely of the place’s existence for years. So I didn’t do much research before going beyond finding the address. Which somehow made it even better. Because I didn’t know exactly what to expect. I was imagining a bunch of sorta tacky, old, parade floats crammed into an empty lot behind the caverns. Like an afterthought. Something you’d see on American Pickers perhaps.

Boy, was I ever wrong. The collection is housed in a huge, nicely landscaped modern building. The clown is one of only a few statues on the outside. The Statue of Liberty is another.

Statue of Liberty


Huge, Modern (as in recently constructed) Building


And when you go inside, this is what you see, seated atop the ticket booth.

Jester Welcome
Jester Welcome


The $10 admission fee was a small price to pay for the delight I felt while visiting this place. Of course, if I were traveling with a group, that could add up. But I was alone, and I literally had the place to myself. Other than the staffers, I was the only person there.

As I entered the exhibit hall, I couldn’t help but laugh out loud. I felt like I’d stepped into Wonka land.

It doesn’t get much more colorful than this. Or does it?


signageThere are signs like this one by all of the floats.

That genie is 30 feet tall and 47 feet wide!

I didn’t care as much about the history or the stats/dimensions. I was just enjoying the sheer creativity of the pieces. The saturation of color. The variety and amount of fun stuff squeezed into this building.

Really. How can you not smile seeing all these treasured bits of Americana lovingly housed and maintained under one roof for people like me to admire?

Some of you won’t get it. But that’s okay. I do.

Rather than overwhelm you with words, I’m just going to share some pics.

Okay, maybe a lot of pics. But I couldn’t help myself.

Genie (the soldier was on a different float)


I just love that face.


“Mahvelous” Stuff


The Genie’s Pet Parrot


A Huge Hand


To give you a better idea as to the large size of these displays, not ’cause it’s a great picture.




Polar Bears




Lehman Trikes Bear


Down the Inaugural Path


Some pieces are less-attractive than others.




Fearsome Dragon


Family of Farming Bunnies


The Driver


Cuteness, Plain and Simple


The detail was amazing to see.


Don’t you just LOVE the matriarch’s dress?




Very big disembodied Chieftain’s head.


Pelican Band


Even pelicans need pretty background singers.




What tickled me even more than all of the complete floats were the miscellaneous items tucked into nooks and crannies. Like any collector, this guy has pieces you just know he loves so much that they have to be displayed somewhere. Anywhere.

No wasted space here.


The guy must really like frogs. ๐Ÿ™‚

A skinny Bob’s Big Boy in an Uncle Sam costume?


I’m pretty sure these came from a Broadway marquee.


This last one reminded me first of the Josie West doll I had as a kid. Second, I swear it’s my cousin, Shannon, immortalized as a parade participant.

Josie West!


So there you have it. Wasn’t that fun?

Remember the giant frog? He’s at a completely separate building, The Yellow Barn, which I’ll share pics from in my next post.

10 Replies to “The Things I Find”

  1. I LOVE these pics…Reflection of an easier more playful time of life. I have to make a plan to see for myself.

    1. Thanks, Kathy. The images don’t do it justice. Being among all of this really big, colorful stuff is just the best. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I’m glad you enjoyed the visit, too.

  2. I love for finding this kind of stuff. I love taking pictures of it and if I can roll my bike into the pic all the better! I think when I am riding I do this, because it am usually riding solo and don’t have to listen to the grumbles of others if I was in the car and wanted to stop. So I hear ya! Without pics it’s just a cleverly told story, with pics it’s entertainment and makes me want to visit places and explore.

    BTW – check out today’s post later on I went Moto Fishing………

    1. Dar, this sort of stuff is definitely captured without the Hubby. Lingering over this sort of silliness would drive him crazy. ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. I love kitsch and brick-a-brack, it’s weird because I find beauty in the creation of it. I think it speaks to pop culture as well. A few years ago hubby were on a toad trip driving from Ontario and I loved it! We saw a giant Canadian Nickel, a giant Canadian Goose, moose and the best was the giant Ukrainian Easter Egg in Alberta, but he wouldn’t stop to take a pic and promised we would go back the next day, unfortunately we didn’t and I’ve never let him forget it! I think a bike trip is in order to capture that picture.

    1. Dar,

      Things like this speak of a gentler time. The days before interstates when restaurants, motels, etc. had to do a little extra something to get folks to stop. My Hubby sounds a lot like yours. ๐Ÿ™‚

      I have never let mine forget the time that he nixed an overnight stay at the Wigwam Motel during a trip to Arizona in 1998. LOL.

  4. kathy

    I like to go down every road. I often make u-turns to capture photos that I pass but in a group it is hard to be stopping all the time. I often pull over to let traffic pass, that way I can drive slower and not have to wear out my brakes.

    I think you have more of this stuff in the East. I’m waiting to find my first Mufflerman but we do have a Statue of Liberty, I’ll have to see if it’s still there

    bob: riding the wet coast

    1. Bob, I can hook you up with a real doozy

      He’s located 1.5 miles south of U.S. 30 on Hwy 896. At the Hershey Farm Restaurant And Inn. You and Mrs. Skoot can both pose with him. ๐Ÿ™‚

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