Kitty Islet was one of the Red Chair's favorite stops with the innkeepers of the Oak Bay Guest House in Victoria, BC, Canada. Like the Red Chair these colorful additions to Kitty Islet had a unique start to their fame. Now they are often searched out, photographed and well known by many who enjoy a front row seat to a spectacular view. Check out how the interesting story of how these two colorful chairs originated here: http://bit.ly/1SBSa8D
Langley, Whidbey Island is right on Saratoga Passage and in the Spring the Grey Whales come in to feed on ghost and brine shrimp on their journey to Alaska. Spy a whale? Ring the town bell! It alerts everyone to a whale sighting off the town's beach which such a fantastic sight to see. There is also a local whale center in town that is run by the Orca Network Red recommends you check out if ever in town. Red learned about Lolita a local "L" pod resident whale captured in 1970 in Penn Cove and about the efforts to retire her and "Bring Lolita Home" to live out her life in Native waters. Red didn't get a chance to see a whale and ring the bell this time, but that just gives it one more excuse (of many) come back to the Eagles Nest Inn. It will ring the bell some day followed by a "there she blows"!
As I sit and write this today, I realize the Red Chair has now been travelling for over five years from coast to coast across America and Canada. It’s now on its way to Alaska! Born from humble thrift store beginnings, the Red Chair has grown into an internet sensation and is the darling of the B&B industry.
Yet, the tale of the Red Chair started from a simple photo and painting, and yesterday we learned that it’s story took a strange twist. It came to my attention that our friend and artist, Julie Cromer, who so beautifully originally captured the Red Chair in her photo, was arrested in Santa Barbara for elder abuse. We are shocked to learn this news, and saddened to think that such a talented person is now in such trouble.
Julie is the photographer whose striking original photo of the Red Chair at Nobska Beach in Woods Hole first got me musing about this simple chair, ruminating about it’s poetic power, and blogging about random connections made over the internet (http://bit.ly/1TRtzRz).
From Julie’s original photo, and the power of the Red Chair in making connections, an amazing movement has grown. Joyous visits to extraordinarily beautiful places, photo opportunities with local celebrities from sea to shining sea, and the broad smiles of innkeepers who often meet face to face for the first time to advance the journey of a celebrity chair have been the legacy of the Red Chair. The Red Chair movement has grown far beyond these first photographs and taken on a life of its own. It symbolizes the best of hospitality, the adventure of travel, and the beauty of local places across North America.
We are shocked and surprised to hear this news about Julie’s unfortunate situation. The details of her legal situation are blurry and I am sure we will never know the whole story of which there are always two sides. But this cloudiness is not at the essence of what makes the Red Chair great, so at this juncture, we feel we must sever our official ties with her while also wishing her well.
As in life, and any journey, the Red Chair is moving on to greener pastures, bluer seas, and fabulous, welcoming B&Bs. Tune in for the next adventure.
A cool and unique stop the Red Chair made while visiting the innkeepers of the Cobble Hill Bed and Breakfast in Cobble Hill, British Columbia was to nearby city of Duncan, home to The Raptors, a education and conservation center. Here the Red Chair met new feathered friends and learned all about the many different, beautiful birds of prey. Red also got a chance to provide a sturdy perch for a Saker Falcon named Airington!
The innkeepers of the Pineacre on the Lake Bed and Breakfast in Peachland, BC, made sure to take the Red Chair to Gasthaus on the Lake Pub & Restaurant for a Medieval Fest. As Red approached the building it knew it was in for a treat! The decor was fantastic with its authentic feel and vintage touches. Inside Red found the massive fireplace and admired the holiday decorations. Red learned the innkeepers had coordinated a medieval fest for the arrival of the Red Chair, a reoccurring event this particular restaurant is known for in the winter months. Red had never been the guest of honor at a feast before, let alone a medieval one with costumes and decor to transport you back in time! Once the feast began it was an evening affair with pewter plates, dripping was candelabras, a stuffed boar's head, costumes and everyone speaking in the medieval tongue. Not to mention everything Red tasted was superb. The Gasthaus on the Lake Pub & Restaurant was a spectacular dining destination, and you should check it out no matter what time of year you visit!
While heading back towards the Hawley Place Bed & Breakfast the Innkeepers took Red down the Brenton Page road to take a peek at the log sorting operations. There were small boom boats, like the TV show in the 70's "Beachcombers", it was very interesting to see them bobbing up and down moving the logs around. Ladysmith and Chemainus have deep harbors and a little further on down the road the group saw a huge log barge that looked like it was tipping over. Red learned that it only goes do far and all those logs will just fall off the barge, right onto the ocean, it was quite an interesting process and sight to see!
While staying at the Cornerstone's Bed and Breakfast in Qualicum Beach, BC, the weather cooperated perfectly for Red's week-long stay. On the fourth day sun was shining so perfectly, Red wanted to take advantage and be out side to take in the sites starting with Cathedral Grove. It was amazed at the Douglas Fir trees that seemed to reach so high they touched the sky. Red questioned, coming across a tree of great stature, what if this was its northern roots? Early springtime in Qualicum Beach, Red learned, was perfect for exploring.
One of the many memorable moments for our Red Chair when it was visiting the Chesterfield Inn Bed and Breakfast in Kelowna, BC, back in February, was when the innkeepers took Red to the blue bear. This public art piece is fascinating! The Blue Bear typifies Ko-low-na, which means grizzly bear in the Salish Language. The closer you get the clearer these symbols become, it truly is a beautiful signature piece of this city. Be sure to add it to your must see list when heading to Kelowna, it is definitely worth the stop!
Since Red could not choose which room it wanted for the duration of its stay at the Myra Canyon Ranch Bed and Breakfast Inn (it was way to hard to pick just one!) the innkeepers let Red try each of them out. Rooms have access to decks with stunning views of the surrounding Valley, Okanagan lake and Kelowna, that offer unforgettable sunsets and serene sunrises, each room offers a unique view yet equally as special, we can see why it was so hard. Even after staying in all of the different rooms, when Red was asked which one was its favorite the reply was,"All of them".
Revelstoke was once famous as a ski-jumping center and boasts the first ski-jump in North America, established in 1915. Many Scandinavian families settles in Revelstoke and brought their winter sports with them. Local man Nels Nelsen was the world champion ski-jumper for several consecutive years in the 1920s. The ski-jump was uin use until the early 1970s and the international competitions attracted athletes and spectators from around the world. Red found that the winter sports in Revelstoke are the cream of the crop, boasting North America's greatest vertical at Revelstoke Mountain Resort, world class Snowmobiles trails blanketed with an average snowfall of 40-60 feet per year, 25+km of groomed Nordic trails including 5+km lit for night skiing, easy access to the best Backcountry Touring experience on earth, and more Helicopter and Cat Ski/Snowboard operations than you can count. Needless to say, Red LOVED staying at the Courthouse Inn Revelstoke nearby to all of these awesome activities!
This blog is maintained by the participating innkeepers of the Red Chair Travels project.
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