Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween

Over at the Birmingham Daily Photo, Virginia has begun an unofficial "100 Strangers Challenge." She challenges herself to greet strangers, get to know them a bit and ask to take their picture. She's met some interesting people that way! So, I decided to try the same thing, and today I met this curious fellow at the Selma-Dallas County Public Library. He was too timid to say a word, but his picture tells his story...which is? I don't know, except he normally wears a suit of armor, and now he is dressed as a warlock? I really think that bright orange (scarf?) brightens him up a lot, and I picked up a vibe that he'd like to tell everybody "Happy Halloween!"

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Jack-o-Lantern Baskets

Here's a cute idea for fall decorations...put your jack-o-lantern in a basket.

Then, when Halloween is over, these vine creations will still be a unique addition for a porch or patio...or Christmas decorations. These baskets were for sale at Riverfront Market Day.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Friendly Ghosts

Friendly ghosts hang on the front doors of Ashford, a 1903 Victorian home in Old Town.

On Halloween, I bet little ones will enjoy their trip up the steps to meet these ghosts for treats

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

A Few Pieces of Art

I thought this display of arts and crafts at Riverfront Market Day was unique. See anything you like?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Across the Creek

The bridge at Kenan's Mill will be swinging again this Saturday as folks cross Valley Creek to the annual fall festival. Of course, those who don't wish to bounce their way across can just take the road.

Anyway, bring your lawn chairs and sit all day listening to bluegrass music and tap along with the cloggers. I hear a little 7-year-old boy and his granddaddy from Tuscaloosa are gonna play some dueling banjoes too. Don't worry about getting hungry. There will be plenty to eat, including a taste of Selma's Best chili and cornbread in a couple of cookoffs. Get a team together for the cookoffs, and you might win cash and/or trophies!

Kids (and adults) have the added fun of free hayrides pulled by an antique tractor, pony rides and bouncing around on inflatables. There's arts and crafts, and the mill house will be open for tours as will the mill where you can buy fresh-ground cornmeal.

As you can tell in the photo above, Valley Creek was low and muddy last year, but a lot more rain has the creek spilling over the dam the way it's supposed to. Gates open at 9 a.m., and the music begins at 10.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Time for Sunday School

It's time for Sunday School, according to the clock on the base of this butterfly. (That would be 9:30 a.m.)

Artists Elizabeth Gilmer, Kelly Pomeroy and the youth group at First Presbyterian Church painted "Madame Butterfly" as their contribution to The Butterfly Project.
This butterfly features favorite Bible verses of Selma's Madame Butterfly, Mallieve Breeding.

Notice that the clock on its base matches the clock on the church tower.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

"Dog (Cats) & Butterfly

What a fashionably friendly cat...wearing a flower in her furr, wouldn't you say?

She's just one of the whimsical cats painted on the "Dog (Cats) & Butterfly" sculpture sponsored by The Frame Shoppe. It's a butterfly sculpture, of course, and you can see more on The Butterfly Project blog.

The artist is Laura Grossman, who owns the shop in Lafayette Park on Water Avenue.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Gathering at the River

Young and old alike gathered at the river the day the butterfly sculptures were unveiled. Many took the opportunity to visit on the riverbank at Lafayette Park.
To view some of the butterflies, visit The Butterfly Project.

(Click on the photo for a larger view.)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Up On a Pedestal

I feel as if I'm on a pedestal!
The pedestal in this photo is part of the St. Paul's Episcopal Church fall Pumpkin Patch decorations.

Thank you, Hope of Knoxville Daily Photo and Tanya of Around Roanoke, Va., Daily Photo for the "Fabulous Fall Decor and "BFF" blog awards.

The Fabulous Fall award goes to bloggers who have posted great autumn pictures.
Here are my picks.

1. Steffe at Photos from Haninge, Sweden
2. Dido at Edingburgh Daily Photo
3. Andrew at Philadelphia: Photographers View
4. Mouse at Lakewood, Ohio Daily Snap
5. JB at Mainz Daily Photo

and the BFF award has the following rules:

1. Only five people are allowed.
2. Four have to be dedicated followers of your blog.
3. One has to be someone new or recently new to your blog and live in another part of the world.
4. You must link back to whoever gave you the award.

So, the bloggers I am tapping are:
1. Kathleen at Southern Artistic Touch
2. PJ at Pensacola Daily Photo
3. D at Tuscaloosa Daily Photo
4. Marley at Cheltenham, UK
5. Hilda at My Manila

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

St. Paul's Pumpkin Patch

The Pumpkin Patch is open at St. Paul's Episcopal Church. The annual fundraising project allows people to pick a pumpkin from the courtyard, and there are extra activities for children on Friday nights at 6 p.m. such as storytelling and face painting.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

"Through My Eyes..." First Baptist Gargoyles

And now...the winner of the Junior Division in the Arts Revive "Through My Eyes...Selma's Historic Architecture" photography contest.
This photograph of a gargoyle on the Gothic-designed First Baptist Church at Dallas Avenue and Lauderdale Street has the wings of an angel and the face of a lion. The photo was taken by Elizabeth Wilson, who I believe, already has a good eye for composition.

Monday, October 20, 2008

"Through My Eyes" Contest: Pettus Bridge Wins Again

This magnificent picture of the Pettus Bridge and Water Avenue buildings along the river at sunset won first place in the recent Arts Revive photography contest.
Kathy Price won $100 and a blue ribbon for her composition with the "Through My Eyes...Selma's Historic Architecture" theme. Photos had to include a view of all or some part of one of Selma's historic buildings. The photographs were displayed at Riverfront Market Day last weekend.

Last year's winner can be viewed HERE.
The 2007 theme was the river, and the blue ribbon picture featured a portion of the Pettus Bridge. Another bridge photo won third place this year while the St. Paul's Episcopal Church tower won second.

To see more winning photos, go to this article on The Selma Times-Journal website.
Note the gargoyle in the other blue-ribbon photo. It won the junior division and was entered by my young neighbor, Elizabeth Wilson.

Congratulations to all!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Reflections of Love and Peace

The courtyard at St. Paul's Episcopal Church welcomes parishioners with "Reflections of Love & Peace." This butterfly sculpture was painted by Sandy Greene and features a variety of Christian symbols and even the church on an outside wing. As you can tell, this butterfly has a stained-glass window appearance. St. Paul's is well known for its beautiful Tiffany stained-glass windows designed by Clara Weaver Parrish, who was an artist, a St. Paul's member and worked for Tiffany & Co. in New York.
To see more views of this butterfly, visit The Butterfly Project.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


I was out taking butterfly sculpture pictures when these colorful flowers drew my attention. Then, I noticed the curled-up cat on the steps. Kitty was sleeping so soundly in the morning sun that she never knew I was there.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Steel Gray (Skywatch Friday)

The sky over Selma matched the steel gray trusses of the Edmund Pettus Bridge last Saturday during Riverfront Market Day. But, there was no rain in sight, and the slightly cool breeze persuaded the crowds to get outside. My camera caught this youngster enjoying the river scenery shortly after he finished a picnic lunch.
To see more skies around the world, click on Skyley.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Mirror Art

Now what is that object in the mirror?

It's a soft drink can sitting on a post and reflected in a vine-wrapped mirror. Unusual mirrors such as this one were for sale last weekend at Riverfront Market Day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Up the Haunted Staircase

A haunting we will go!

Here is the staircase at Sturdivant Hall where the ghost of Selma bankerJohn Parkman has briefly been seen and felt. (Okay, I know it's blurry, but I "softened" the photo to give it a ghostly appeal.)
Sturdivant is among the sites that guests will visit this weekend on Selma's Haunted History Tours. They will hear stories of its resident ghosts, view other haunted houses and meet a few of the spirits at Old Live Oak Cemetery. More ghost tours are scheduled at Old Cahawba Archaeological Park.


Tuesday, October 14, 2008

River Respite

A special addition to Riverfront Market Day this year was the newly unveiled butterfly sculptures. "River Respite" is sponsored by The Restaurant on Grumbles Alley, in background, and depicts the establishment's history, legends and cuisine. The artist is Laura Grossman who owns The Frame Shoppe nearby.
To view a map of the butterflies, click HERE.

Monday, October 13, 2008


One of the tastiest things about Riverfront Market Day is barbecue!
This chef stood over the grill all day long cooking up pork. A barbecue plate or sandwich, anyone?
See my Riverfront Market 2008 photo album HERE.

(Note: This is not a political blog, but I see the camera caught another cook's T-shirt advertising her choice for president. BTW, this blogger does not necessarily endorse the politics caught unawares by her camera!)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

To Market, To Market

Hundreds of people came to Riverfront Market Day Saturday in the biggest turnout in years.

I'm sure that cool weather helped along with a number of new vendors and variety of crafts. The music was superb, and yes folks, I did buy a funnel cake...can't say I ate the whole thing by myself though!

One of my favorite parts of the day is meeting and greeting folks that I haven't seen in awhile. Like the women above, I "ran into" several old friends who had been out of sight but not out of former longtime neighbors who moved but returned for the weekend. It was a wonderful day!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Society's Queen City Swallowtail

Selma is the "Butterfly Capital of Alabama," and the Eastern Tiger Swallowtail is its official mascot. This butterfly sculpture was sponsored by the Selma-Dallas County Historic Preservation Society and painted by member Candi Duncan. It sits on the corner of Heritage Village near Sturdivant Hall.

The Butterfly Project unveiled 45 sculptures Thursday just in time for festival visitors to include the tour in their weekend. The Alabama Tale-Tellin' Festival continues tonight at Pickard Auditorium at 7 p.m., and Riverfront Market Day on Water Avenue is open until 5 p.m.

More Butterfly Project photos can be viewed HERE.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Ta Da!

Ta Da! It was that kind of moment on Thursday when the horn blew and the first butterflies were unveiled. "Tranquility," painted by artist Nate Brown, center, sits at the foot of Lafayette Park on the bank of the Alabama River. Sponsors are Raymond and Ann Thomas, left, and Kathi and George Needham, right, and McNair and JoAnn Ramsey, not shown. More than 40 of these five-foot-tall sculptures are stationed across Selma's downtown historic district. The Butterfly Project is sponsored by the Dallas County Arts Alliance as an effort to showcase the artistic talent in Selma to begin a downtown revitalization. The entire project is locally produced. Butterfly Flight Path maps will be available this weekend at the Alabama Tale-Tellin' Festival and Riverfront Market Day. Most of the butterflies can be seen via walking tours. The rest are a short driving distance away.

To see more photos of the ceremony and other butterflies, check out The Butterfly Project.

Thursday, October 9, 2008


Go to most any farmers' or flea market around here, and you can bet there will be collards for sale. Give them a good washing, tear up the leaves and stir fry them in a skillet with a little oil oil and onions. Add a small amount of water and sugar, cover and let simmer til tender. Then, eat with a few shakes of pepper sauce. Good!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Market Day Woodwork

Here's another Riverfront Market Day preview.

These unique wooden bowls and baskets were at last year's market, and with the vendor lineup out in today's newspaper, I see where there will be lot of things made of wood: bowls and baskets, picture frames and tables, stools, spinners and children's toys.

Other booths that I'll definitely check out are the barnwood and cedar birdhouses, baskets woven with wisteria and kudzu, the numerous Arts Revive-sponsored arts, monogrammed gifts and pottery.
(For you young mothers and grandmothers out there, several booths will offer baby and children's items.)

Now, what to do for lunch? Looks like there will be plenty of barbecue, hot dogs, Polish sausage and hamburgers. Or, I could head over to The Restaurant on Grumbles Alley for a sit-down lunch on the covered terrace!

For snacks, I see funnel cakes listed and some sweet kettle popcorn! Yum, yum!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Market Day Wares

Canvas art was among the many wares for sale at last year's Riverfront Market Day. This year's market activities are Saturday, Oct. 11. There will be music, food, arts, crafts, antique cars, pony rides, a strolling musician and much more!

This section of Water Avenue is the entrance to Lafayette Park and leads to the St. James
Hotel entrance, Bridge Tender's House and The Frame Shoppe.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Opening Night

It's opening night for the Lions' Club Central Alabama Fair!
The fairgrounds open shortly after 5 p.m. at the old armory on Dallas Avenue. There will be the usual midway rides, popcorn and cotton candy, and don't forget to eat the ever popular Kozy Dawgs. You know that your name will be called until you head over to the Civitan booth!
My favorite part of the fair is the exhibits. Local talent really shines through the art, photography, canning, cakes, cookies and crafts.
For entertainment, tonight the Back in Time music group from the Talladega School for the Blind will perform at the pavilion at 6:30 p.m.

(The photo above was taken in the exhibit hall last year.)

Check out the article about a few of the butterfly artists in today's Selma Times Journal.

Sunday, October 5, 2008


Church steeples rather than skyscrapers form Selma's downtown skyline.
First Baptist Church is at left, and St. Paul's Episcopal is at right.
Have a blessed Sunday!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Friday Night Football

I don't take many high school sports pictures these days, but when your alma mater comes to town, well...we just had to go watch them play the home team.

Besides, I once cheered for the Big Blue, and the Cougars are working on their fifth state championship in a row. The game was a tough defensive battle with Selma's Morgan Academy Senators (the red team) holding Southern scoreless until late in the fourth quarter. With the score tied 7-7 as the clock wound down, the game went into overtime. The Cougars leaped ahead 14-7, and the Senators stalled for the loss.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Mirror, Mirror (Skywatch Friday)

Mirrowed windows at Weaver Castle reflect blue skies above Selma.

The "castle," according to its website, "is of significant architectural Gothic design, was completed in 1868 and is located in the Old Town historic district of Selma, Alabama. Weaver Castle was built by William M. Weaver, a prominent Selma landowner, whose father was one of Selma's founders. It is believed that architect Richard Michel Upjohn designed it from a castle on the Rhine in Germany. Well known in architectural circles in New York, he also designed the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church here in Selma . Situated on the highest spot in Selma, Weaver Castle is located in the northern corner of what was Weavers Grove. All the materials to make Weaver Castle were from the property. Sand bricks were kilned and the woodwork is made from walnut, oak, and pine. The front entrance and ballroom feature parquetry floors. It is said that during the Civil War that gold was buried on the site of the Weaver Castle. It is also believed that the castle is haunted. There is music playing, people talking, and a light in the attic where there is no electricity."

For more skywatching, click HERE.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Historic Water Avenue

Selma's Historic Water Avenue is the site every October for Riverfront Market Day. The outdoor arts, craft, music and food festival is Saturday, October 11 and will feature wares that include homemade crafts, art, apparel, baby items, decorations, baked goods and much more. A variety of live music including Dixieland jazz, Oldies, light rock and blues will take to the stages, and a strolling musician will entertain throughout several blocks. There's an antique car show for enthusiasts and pony rides for children.
...And of course, the butterfly sculptures will be on display!

Other events the weekend of Oct. 10-11 are the Alabama Tale Tellin' Festival and the Central Alabama Fair.

The marker above is located at the entrance to Lafayette Park. The St. James Hotel is to your left, and the first block of buildings is to your right. Go straight, and you can see a lovely view of the Alabama River and Pettus Bridge, plus pause on the bench next to the Bridge Tender's House. This location is also the site of the old river bridge, which as demolished in 1940.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

October Theme Day (Lines)

October's Theme Day is LINES, and these are the bold brush strokes of an impressionistic painting by Cam Walker, and the painting just happens to be on one of Selma's butterfly sculptures. Her theme is the migration of impressionism, and the sculpture's base will reflect more of that idea.

Cam is an art teacher and was recently recognized for other works at the Selma Art Guild Summer Art Show.

The butterflies are almost ready for the big unveiling... October 9 at 5 p.m.!

To view the LINEUP from around the world...
Click here to view thumbnails for all participants