Sunday, January 27, 2013

Patrick Dougherty at Wegerzyn Gardens

 Patrick Dougherty is a sculpture artist who makes large scale sculptures out of intertwined sticks and branches. The Wegerzyn Gardens metropark currently has one of his installations which resembles a winding, whimsical tunnel or playhouse. 

The other day we got a few inches of snow, and I thought it might be interesting to get some winter pictures of the sculpture and the gardens under a blanket of white snow. Enjoy!

The Federal Garden

Federal Garden with the English Garden in the background

Fountain in the center of the English Garden

The boardwalk that winds through part of the swamp forest

The Swamp Forest

Looking back at the Dougherty sculpture from the memorial garden
For more information:
Wegerzyn Gardens website
Patrick Dougherty's website

Saturday, January 19, 2013

Maximum Candiosity: Esther Price

People who don't live in Dayton or Cincinnati may not be familiar with the name, but Esther Price was the Willy Wonka of Dayton Ohio. Since the 1920's, the Esther Price factory has been pumping out her own special recipe of super sweet chocolates and other sugary treats. It's still a family-owned business (albeit another family) so it's not surprising that the employees are also super sweet, offering tasty morsels of chocolate and candy-choosing advice. The chocolate factory is just a couple minutes down the road from my house, so I stopped by this morning to check out the Valentine's Day spread and nibble on a few free samples.

It was chilly this morning, so they had free hot chocolate, but I made a beeline for the "misfits" bowl- those chocolates that are so hideously deformed as to make them ineligible for inclusion in a box of candy. AKA the "Imperfection Confections."

Mmm... yummy imperfections...
Next up is something that might be considered a local delicacy- Chocolate covered potato chips. (The chips are Mike-Sell's brand- also made in Dayton!) Sweet, salty, and so good...
The ripples in the chips ensure a good ratio of chip to chocolate.
On down the line, I sampled pecan-infused fudge and a pecan turtle. Both delish, but if you're in the candy store this time of year, there is one thing you can't miss. Everywhere you turn you will find row upon row of heart-shaped boxes of chocolate, from petite 4 ounce packages to the massive $171 eight pound red velvet covered behemoth.
Light chocolate, dark chocolate, light and dark chocolate... so many to choose from!

Animal prints are going to be big this year.

Seriously, 8 lbs of chocolate, but somehow it adds 10 pounds to your hips?
And oh yeah, another Ohio favorite, the Buckeye...
Chocolate covered peanut buttery goodness!
Finally, lest you succumb to chocolate overload, there is the wall of Jelly Belly jelly beans, the fantastically nostalgic pic-m-mix selection, and a variety of pre-bagged non-chocolate candies of the gummy, sour, chewy, and hard variety, including sugar free ones, ensuring maximum candiosity for all!

For more info: Esther Price

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Jon Graham Pottery

I go to 2nd Street Market almost every weekend. It's a great year-round farmer's market located on 2nd Street in downtown Dayton, Ohio, and housed in a former B&O railroad freight building. During the summer, you can find vendors outside selling flowers and produce from local farms and nurseries. In the winter, the outside vendors close up, but you can still find produce, cheese, breads, honey, flowers and other local products inside, in addition to a variety of international food options: French crepes, Thai chicken satay, Columbian arepas, and meat pies from New Zealand are some of my favorites.

2nd Street market also showcases some really fantastic local artisans. You can find jewelry, alpaca wool, upcycled crafts, woven bowls, felted bags, and much more. Recently, I picked up this beautiful yarn bowl by local potter Jon Graham:

John Graham is at the market every week, not only selling his work, but making new pots, offering demonstrations, and chatting with his customers. 

I have my eye on a few other pieces for my own kitchen, or to give as gifts. I don't know that I really need a special garlic pot, but it's certainly a conversation piece.

For more information on this artist, visit the 2nd Street market page.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Garden Station

Garden Station is a community garden and art space in downtown Dayton. Although the garden plots are empty this time of year, today's unseasonably warm weather and lack of foliage on the trees provided excellent conditions for viewing the sculptures and murals in the garden. 

I expect I will be back in the spring and summer to take photos of the gardens and attend the community events, but until then, enjoy the art!

A found-art sculpture among the tree stumps

I do not know most of the artists' names, but this mural is by Amy Kollar Anderson

"Dusk is when the little men melt into mountains."

A robot destroying the city? Sweet!

What remains of the Wooden Man...

For more information on the Garden Station, visit