Friday, July 31, 2015

Diablo Mountains

That's the Diablo range to the east of Hollister. Doesn't it look like it's right behind the neighborhood? They're several miles away. By the way, that wall separates the neighborhood from Highway 25.

Thursday, July 30, 2015


The other day, the Husband and I pedaled our bicycles by the tomato cannery. I felt very tiny droplets fall on me. I looked up. Ah! Tomato mist. The droplets even tasted a bit tomato-y.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Granite Sculpture by Richard Deutsch

The abstract sculptures in front of the San Benito County Administration Building on the corner of Fourth and West Streets were created by award-winning Davenport sculptor Richard Deutsch.

Deutsch designed the pieces as a two-part sculpture out of five tons of granite from Graniterock's quarry in Aromas, according to Santa Cruz Sentinel (December 3, 1993 issue). Graniterock donated the material for the public art piece.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Relay for Life

Downtown Hollister is swimming in purple to support Relay for Life that's taking place this weekend at the San Benito High School football field. This local annual event is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.

Participants form teams and each member takes turns walking around the track for 24 hours from Friday evening (July 31). According to the Hollister Relay for Life web page, 27 teams and 198 participants have raised nearly $56,000 so far. For more information about this event, click here.

Today I'm participating in Our World Tuesday. If you'd like to join or check out posts by other participants, click here.

Monday, July 27, 2015

Fremont Memorial Tunnel

A long time ago, a tunnel was built beneath Fourth Street so that schoolchildren could safely cross the busy street to go to and from Fremont School, which used to be where the present-day courthouse stands.

Recently, a mural honoring the memory of Fremont School and the schoolchildren was painted on the Fourth Street underpass. It's an amazing mural, full of life and brilliant colors.

The designer, Arturo Rosette, the Fine Arts Chair at Gavilan College, based the mural on photos he found in the San Benito County Historical Society's archives. The silhouettes are of children who went to Fremont School, including the mural's painter, Roy Darr II.

For more about the mural, check out this story by John Chadwell at And, to check out another Downtown Hollister mural designed by Arturo Rosette, click here.

Today is the Monday Mural meme, hosted by Oakland Daily Photo. Click here to check out other murals from around the world.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

Walnuts of San Benito County

Walnuts have been produced in San Benito County for many, many years. Although there are fewer acreage of walnut orchards, walnuts ranked third in the fruit and nut crops category in 2014 in terms of their value. Last year, the walnut crop was worth over $5.5 million, according to the San Benito County 2014 Annual Crop Report.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

See Da Tree?

Isn't this very, very tall and huge cedar tree on Fifth Street gorgeous? Just think of all the Hollister history it has lived through so far.

Friday, July 24, 2015

Whale City Bakery, Bar & Grill

Yesterday, the Husband and I ran away from Hollister for a few hours and headed to the coast. I realized it has been a long while since I've been to the beach when I saw the kitesurfers at Waddell Beach. Wowza!

For lunch, we stopped at the Whale City Bakery, Bar & Grill in Davenport on Highway One. A family-run operation, it opened in the 1990s as a bakery. Then somewhere along the line, the family added sit-down service for yummy meals. Several nights a week, the restaurant also offers live music.

By the time I thought about taking photos, our plates were nearly empty. The Husband had a Reuben sandwich bursting with corned beef and sauerkraut that came with a healthy portion of green salad. He was glad he didn't opt for the french fries, otherwise he would've been stuffed.

I had the calamari appetizer, which was lightly coated and fried. I was happy that they threw in the squid heads. While the Husband was working away on his second half of the sandwich, I asked for a cup of coffee and lemon poppy seed muffin. Very mellow coffee. Although the muffin was dense, it did not feel heavy on the tummy at all. The exact nutrition was what I needed to propel me up a hiking trail later on.

Whale City Baker, Bar & Grill is a perfect stop for a meal if you're ever up near Davenport. Some people say that you can actually see whales from the restaurant. And, they didn't mean the murals. For more info about the restaurant, head over to its website or Facebook page.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Morning on Southside Road

A few mornings ago, I rode my bicycle on Southside Road. It pays to look up.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Looking West on John Smith Road

This is looking west on John Smith Road. Here's the view looking down from up there. 

It's Nature Footstep's Digital Art Meme today. Click here to check out digital artwork by other participants. 

Here's the original image:

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Gas, P.U.

The high cost of gas, that's what's P.U.! It's summer so, of course, prices are climbing again. Today, the lowest prices range from $3.27 to $3.69. Heaven only knows what it shall be tomorrow.

It was a treat to see a few vintage gas pumps in San Benito Tire Pros & Automotive  on Nash Road the other day, which once upon a time was a gas station.

Ah, the old days when you pulled into a gas station and someone immediately came out to pump the gas, check the level of the brake fluid, and wash your front and back windows. And, if you asked, he would check the air in your tires. All that service whether you were there for a full or partial tank of gasoline.

Today I'm participating in Our World Tuesday. If you'd like to join or check out posts by other participants, click here.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Calpulli Itzpapalotl Danza Azteca

Calpulli Itzapapaloti Danza Azteca is a local Pre-Columbian Aztec dance troupe that performs at various events and functions, such as last Saturday's Street Festival and Car Show in Downtown Hollister.

According to its Facebook page, the group offers free instruction to anyone interested in learning Aztec dance. Beginners are welcome to observe or participate. The group holds practices at the First Presbyterian Church in Hollister on Thursdays, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.

For more information about the dance troupe, visit its Facebook page.

Today, I'm linking up at Monday Mellow Yellows, hosted by Gemma Wiseman. Click here to see more mellow yellows by bloggers around the world.

Sunday, July 19, 2015

A View from KT Road

It was a wonderful morning for a bicycle ride on Southside Road. Pedaled a bit down Thomas Road and came across a neat old wooden bridge near the intersection of Thomas and KT Roads.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Wine grapes

Wine grapes at Leal Vineyards, off of Fairview Road

In 2013, wine grapes made the top 10 crops grown in San Benito County, according to the annual crop report. The local vineyards produced 15,733 tons of wine grapes on 3,885 acres. The combined gross value of their wine grape production was $21,771,500.

Vineyards are growing all over the county, on widespread acreage as well as on small estates. Click here for a list of local vineyards—and wineries.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Red Barn on Fairview Road

This fading red barn is near the south end of Fairview Road, just past Maranatha Drive. In the distance is the Gabilan range.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

29th Annual Street Festival, Car Show, Swap Meet, and Chili Cookoff!

Here's how late I can be: I finally "processed" some of my photos from last year's street festival. Ha! Just in time, too. This Saturday, July 18, is the 29th Annual Street Festival, Car Show, and Swap Meet in Downtown Hollister. New this year is a Chili Cookoff. 

The free event runs from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on San Benito Street, between Fourth and South Streets. Fifth, Sixth, and Seventh Streets will also be closed between Monterey and East Streets. 

Lots of old, older, and even older cars to see. Also, live music and entertainment to enjoy on two stages. Be sure to stop at the Hollister Downtown Association's booth for a free slice of watermelon.

The Hollister Downtown Association sponsors the event each year. Thank you, Brenda and team!

Here are a few more photos from the 2014 festival and car show. Maybe this year, I'll get Saturday's photos up sooner. Have fun at the festival!

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Through the Looking Glass

Sightseeing in Downtown Hollister. See you tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Santa Ana Valley Road

Santa Ana Valley Road is a pleasant bicycle ride or drive, several miles east of Downtown Hollister. You can get there one of three ways.

The most direct route is to access it from the north by turning onto Santa Ana Valley Road from Fairview Road.

From the south, turn onto John Smith Road, and follow it all the way to the end. You have a choice of turning left or right onto Santa Ana Valley Road. Turn left and you pedal or drive through the valley floor.

The least direct route is from Tres Pinos. From Highway 25 (aka Airline Highway), turn onto Quien Sabe Road, across from Immaculate Conception Church. Simply follow the road, and at the end, turn left. Voila, you're on Santa Ana Valley Road.


Monday, July 13, 2015

Local Corn Fields

That's the Gabilan Range in the distance. Where am I? Looking at the corn fields on Fallon Road.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

A Sunday Flashback -- Early 1990s

You're looking north on San Benito Street. Not much different, right?

Look closer.  Johnny's Bar & Grill doesn't have the mural we see today on it. That gets painted in 1996.

See The Vault building on the corner, across the street. No? It's the two-story green building. The Vault won't be open for another several more years.

Saturday, July 11, 2015

Looking Down Swope Alley

Swope Alley is a unique street in Downtown Hollister. Between West and San Benito Streets, the alley runs east to west (or west to east depending on your point of view). Nothing strange about that.

But, on the other side of of San Benito Street, Swope Alley runs behind the storefronts. It goes from north to south (or south to north) between Seventh and South Streets. That's what you're seeing in the photo.

Interesting, huh? I wonder what the story is about Swope Alley

Friday, July 10, 2015

Thursday, July 9, 2015

Irrigation Pipes

I have a soft spot for irrigation pipes. Sounds weird, I know. But, they were a part of my childhood. The Daddy worked for various farmers in San Benito County as an irrigator. Between the ages of four and eight, he and the fields were my babysitter.

One of my memories is of playing next to the large irrigation pipes from which water rushed down vegetable rows from the small open gates in the pipes. I made sure to see where the Daddy was as he worked his way across the field to the other end. When the water reached the end of a row, Daddy held his shovel high above the row. My job then was to shut the water gate for that row. Looking back, it was one of the best jobs I've had.

By the way, this scene is on Union Road, near Ladd Elementary School.

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Drying Apricots

Tray after tray of organic Blenheim apricots dry in the sun at The Farm/ Bertuccio's Market on Airline Highway (aka Highway 25).  The aroma of the drying apricots was delightful.

Tuesday, July 7, 2015

The House on the Corner

Every time I pass by the run down, abandoned house on the corner of Fairview and John Smith Road, I think photo opp. I finally stopped there the other morning when something got in my eye while pedaling my bike.

I wonder what the story is behind the house. Whoever had lived there once upon a time liked pepper trees. The trees are gorgeous.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Summer Morning

It's another beautiful morning in Hollister. This is a view from Union Road above The Farm/Bertuccio's Market.

Sunday, July 5, 2015

2015 Hollister Freedom Rally

The Hollister Freedom Rally will be ending in a couple hours. The weather has been perfect for the three-day event. Not too hot, not too cold. And, the fog burned off early in the morning. Hope the thousands of visitors and locals who attended the motorcycle rally enjoyed themselves.

Hats off to the ConvEXX, the rally's organizer, and to Hollister Police Chief David Westrick for a great job of ensuring a safe and peaceful event.

For more photos of the events, check out Take 25's album on Facebook. You don't need to be a Facebook member or sign on to view it.



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