Wednesday, March 25, 2009
Places: Let's play
During my stay in Houston, I discovered there was a 12-acre park next to my hotel called Discovery Green. The park is new, and, in fact. opened in April, 2008.
On Saturday, I went to eat at the food court in the Houston Center. On the way back, I side-tracked through the park. I had my point-and-shoot camera, and I'm certainly glad I did.
The field of yellow snapdragons invites you in:
I hope I have my directions right, and, if so, this (below) is looking north:
If you look east, you can see Minute Maid Park (see image below). The bright, colored thing that looks like it was made out of legos is a geometric design titled Synchronicity of Color and was created by Margo Sawyer, a well-known artist.
There are two of them and here's the other (wear your shades if you have a chance to see it):
I've heard about this, and always assumed it was a myth, but in Houston, I found the fountain of youth!
Kids love the Gateway Fountain (shown above, left and in the two following photos). They would scream and run when the fountains came on. Some wore bathing suits, some just shorts and tee shirts.
This from the Discovery Green web site: Two systems of jets create a myriad of water activity atop a gently sloping granite surface, with 14-foot high arcing jets serving as landmarks and smaller jets cycling on and off to invite park visitors for a closer look or some fun in the spray.
I came back on Sunday with my good camera for this, and I shot it fast. You can see the water magically suspended in air.
This young fellow guides his remote-controlled model boat on a one-acre pond called Kinder Lake. Kinder means child in German, as in kindergarten.
Another view of Kinder Lake and Minute Maid Park:
Children take horse (or pony?) rides at Discovery Green:
The park has a series of programs. On Saturday, the South Texas Indian Dancers performed:
The group was formed back in the Seventies by Robert Soto, who is the older guy on the left above.
Most of the dancers are of the Lipan Apache tribe.
Soto claims the dancers do so as a way of preserving a tradition that was taken from them many years ago.
Soto also says, "When we dance, we dance not for ourselves but for the memory of our ancestors before us and for future generations that will follow after us."
Soto (above) performed a hoop dance. When he finished, the hoops were in the form of a globe like planet earth.
This little guy (above) was watching so intently, I couldn't resist.
After the performance, the audience was allowed a photo op (see above). Apparently, they'll let anyone join them.
You can read more about the group here.
Below is an experiment that went awry, I'm afraid:
This (below) is something kids could play on. I wish I knew more about it, but it looked pretty cool.
Here's (below) a closeup of the same gizmo:
From the park looking west, you can see the Hilton-Americas, my home for two weeks.
To the right of the Hilton is the Toyota Center. It's where the NBA Houston Rockets play their home games.
If you haven't seen anything you like, stick around. More photos are coming.