Photo galleries of places I have been

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South Coast Botanic Garden, Palos Verdes

These photos were taken last week at the South Coast Botanic Gardens. Every once in a while we need to get out of the house with nothing that has to be done, and Tanya really enjoys taking photos of flowers; so we will head off to somewhere like the South Coast Botanic Garden. The place is huge and after two visits there, we have just scratched the surface. Of course, with Tanya’s limitations due to her Rheumatoid Autoimmune Disease, we don’t usually get more than an hour or two there. It was a nice day; she got some sunshine and photos of flowers so our mission was accomplished.

For those of you with children, the South Coast Botanic Garden is having a Great Pumpkin Hunt every day through October. You can submit a new entry every day so if you want somewhere to take the kids that does not involve candy or video arcades, the South Coast Botanic Garden may be just what you are looking for.

I have donated my watermark to the Rheumatoid Patient Foundation to help bring awareness to this organization Continue reading

Photos of Sausage Fest at FIG in Santa Monica

These photos are from last night at the 1st Annual Sausage Fest, held at FIG Restaurant in the Fairmont Miramar Hotel in Santa Monica. Our friends at Smog City Brewing are celebrating their first year in business and are pouring their fine brews at many events this October. When asked if I would not mind covering the event, I was honored and more than happy to do so. Over the years I have attended many events that might be described as a sausage fest, but this was the first one I attended that actually served sausage. In fact, if it were not for the sausage, there was no resemblance to any sausage fest I have photographed before.

Hosted by FIG’s Chef Ray Garcia, additional chefs included Vartan Abgaryan of Public Kitchen; Greg Daniels of Haven Gastropub; Daniel Mattern of Cooks County; Bernhard Mairinger of Bier Beisl and Kris Morningstar of Ray’s and Stark Bar. Participating breweries, besides Smog City Brewing, included Eagle Rock Brewing Company, Hopf Wheat Brewery, Noble Ale Works, Brouwerij West and several others. FIG’s Chef Garcia is a homebrewer and provided four brews that he made; they were all very good. Some of the chefs offered pairings with beers provided by homebrewers that they were friends with. It was a very fun event and everyone seemed to have a great time. I know I did and I am looking forward to the 2nd Annual Sausage Fest. Thanks again to Smog City Brewing for the hookup. Continue reading

3rd Annual BAM Fest Santa Monica

Saturday, October 6, was the 3rd Annual BAM Fest (Beer, Art and Music Festival), which is a fundraiser benefiting the 18th Street Arts Center. I have been talking to many of the local brewmasters about this event and I heard nothing but good things about it; now I know why. This was a very fun event with beautiful weather, beautiful people, good food, good music and some really great beers.

All of the local micro breweries were represented with Strand Brewing, Monkish Brewing, The Brewery at Abigaile, El Segundo Brewing and Smog City all showing up. There were over 30 breweries represented with every type of beer you could hope for. In addition, there were several food trucks, Venice Ale House was making some great tacos and there was wine and craft soda tastings. You can see by the photos that everyone was having a really good time. I can not wait to come again next year. Continue reading

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