Friday, May 15, 2020

Local Joys #3: The Masks Are Back!

Picture credit: FC MoA
Every year since 2003, the Fort Collins Museum of Art has held their Masks Exhibition and Benefit. The plain ceramic masks, seen here, are distributed to professional and recreational artists, who design and adorn them and return them to the museum for auction.

This year, in light of current events, the exhibition and auction are taking place online. For a virtual tour, click here, and to see the entire catalog of this year's masks, follow this link. As always, I'm amazed at the variety of artistic vision manifested in the masks. From poignant to whimsical, minimalist to ornately transformed, there is something for everyone. Click on the individual masks for more pictures and the artist's statments.

As you can imagine, museums everywhere are struggling with lengthy shut-downs due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Masks event is the museum's big annual fundraiser, and this year is more important than ever. Bidding is open until June 28. If you're so inclined, you have plenty of time to find that special mask and support a great cause.

I have never bid on a mask, but I'm going to this year. The tough part is deciding which one!

Stay safe and well, everyone!

Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Local Joys #2: Show Me the Monet

It seems like a year ago, but it was only the end of January when my husband and I ventured out (remember doing that?) to the Denver Art Museum to see the exhibit Claude Monet: The Truth of Nature. Spanning two decades, the exhibit consisted of more than 120 paintings reflecting Monet's evolving relationship with nature.

It was amazing and humbling to be in the presence of such beautiful artwork. I couldn't help but wonder what Monet might have thought if he'd known that his singular talent would someday draw sold-out crowds for weeks on end.

For a nice overview, watch the short video below. Try not be alarmed that people are standing close and no one is wearing a mask. It was B.C. (Before Corona).

These quotes from Monet provide interesting insight, too.

Wishing you health and safety as we continue to take things one day at a time on the long road back to normal!

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Three Random Things: Outdoor Color

We're still waiting for things to green up here in Northern Colorado--today's rain and projected snowfall will help with that--but here are three random colorful things I spotted on my walk the other day:

Crocus! A sure harbinger of spring.

This orange feather. I have no idea why it was on the sidewalk, but I like to imagine that someone was strolling around in a feather boa.

These two people in their red coats. I kept trying to get closer for a better picture, but then they cut across the open space. Maybe they felt like they were being followed?

Have a lovely day! Stay safe and well!

Monday, March 9, 2020

Local Joys #1

Hello there, and happy Monday! In case you missed it, I'm working on bringing more joy into my life this year and writing about it at my other blog, Jenny Writes. Here at this blog, I'm reporting on the local joys I find around my hometown.

This week:

I was stopped at a light when I saw this orange Lamborghini in my rearview. It was a beautiful day, and this couple looked like they were having a blast as they passed me. (Of course they passed me. Pretty sure they passed everyone.)

And on Saturday, my husband and I happened across this 24-hour open Jam for the Van session. The folk band A Brother's Fountain was trying to raise money for a touring van, and they also donated half of their proceeds to the local homeless mission.

I'm not sure how many on the stage at this moment were actual band members, but here's a bit about the band that I swiped from online:
A Brother’s Fountain is a band birthed from deep spiritual expression within the avenue of passionate music. Their story began on the street corners of Old Town Fort Collins, Colorado. Starting out with just two guitarists/songwriters, the band has evolved into a seven piece with a rather eclectic combination of instruments. They have uncovered a folk inspired genre that you’ve always wanted to hear, but never knew existed.

Joy on, people!

Friday, February 21, 2020

The Resurrection

Welcome! It occurred to me the other day that I started this Choice City Native blog all the way back in August of 2010. It began as a challenge to do one new thing in my hometown every week for a year, which I successfully completed. After that, I posted pretty regularly for three years. I did a bunch of new stuff, and some favorite old stuff, and had a lot of fun writing and taking pictures. Then I decided I needed a little break.

That break went on. And on. For. Years.

I would post occasionally, but for the most part, this blog has been gathering dust for the better part of a decade now.

The other day, I thought, that's it. Time to toss it onto the heap of well-intentioned but forgotten blogs in some cobwebby corner of the internet.  But then I had a change of heart and decided to give it one more run for old time's sake.

Over at Jenny Writes, I started something this year I call Joy Project 2020. You can read the explanation here, but the short version is that I'm using the book Joyful: The Surprising Power of Ordinary Things to Create Extraordinary Happiness, by Ingrid Fetell Lee, to inspire more joy in my life. And I thought it might be fun to let that spill over into this blog and report on the elements of joy I find here in my hometown, where I still happily reside. Think of it as Joy: Local Edition.

So, here we go!

The first "aesthetic of joy" in Ingrid's book is Energy, and I don't know if I could find find a better example of joyful energy than the performance of Ballet Folklorico my husband and I recently attended. The choreography, the costumes, the music, it was all spectacular. And, I have to say, the perfect antidote to everything that's happening in the news this month.

We weren't allowed to take pictures or videos (which was actually awesome because no one was waving phones around), so here's a short YouTube clip. I hope you enjoy it, and I also hope you'll stop by periodically to see what other joyous things I discover in my neck of the woods this year!

Friday, March 23, 2018

Photo of the Week: Scorpion Gulch

Scorpion Gulch, Phoenix Arizona

Built in 1936 as a residence and curio store, what remains of the site is now listed on the Phoenix Historic Property Register and is open to the public.

Monday, March 5, 2018

Plog Away!

The wind is whipping in NoCo today. When I had Walter the Wonder Dog out on an ill-advised walk, I couldn't help but notice how much trash has collected in the winter-dry irrigation ditch near my neighborhood. That reminded me of something my son told me about the other day: plogging.

The term is a portmanteau of "plocka upp" (Swedish for pick up) and, of course, jogging. I'm not much for jogging, but I can certainly try get into the habit of bringing a trash bag along on my daily dog walks.

I guess that will make me a "plalker"...?