31 October 2013

Sleepy Holloween Spirits On Display

As recounted previously on this blog, the Carbon Canyon community of Sleepy Hollow had a tradition from the mid-1960s for a couple of decades afterward of celebrating Halloween by having its own recreation of the nighttime ride of the headless horseman chasing after Ichabod Crane near the old community center and fire house.

Unfortunately, that event ceased quite a number of years ago, although more recently the Carbon Canyon Women's Club held annual Halloween parties in the new community center.  Even that, however, stopped a few Halloweens ago.

There are, though, some folks who are doing their best to keep up the spirit(s) of the season by decorating their homes and encouraging the few children who live in Sleepy Hollow to do their trick or treating here. 

In fact, at least in some parts of the community, there have been increasingly more elaborating decorations this year than in the recent past.

Here are just a few photographic examples of the ghosts, goblins, witches, zombies, tombstones, and other Halloween creatures and fixtures that are inhabiting the area this holiday.  While there isn't a picture of it here, there's even a headless horseman at the end of the community to keep that part of the local lore intact.

It sure would be cool if there could be a revival of the ride of the headless horseman, though that might be asking for too much, but at least there are some inventive and creative holiday decorations to enjoy during the Halloween season.  Note the Miley Cyrus tombstone at the lower left of the above photo.

So, thanks to everyone who takes part in enlivening Sleepy Hollow this time of year.  While it's certainly fun for the kids to enjoy, the adults seem to be as in to it as the younger ones, too.

Here are more examples of the awesome decorations that are out there right now:

Couldn't resist having this sincere shout-out to Elvis included.

Some of these take some work, but they really add a lot to the atmosphere when they're up.
All this one needs is a hand sticking up out of the ground--maybe next year.

28 October 2013

Carbon Canyon Historical Artifact #39: Badminton at La Vida Mineral Springs, 1948

This is an unusual view of La Vida Mineral Springs from the 1940s, with a "Genuine Hand Colored Photograph" from publisher Fred K.W. Martin of Pasadena showing a couple of dudes in white duds playing a spirited game of badminton.

The duo are in a dirt court set next to the two-story bath house, which existed for about three decades or so, from the 1920s to the late 1950s, when a devastating explosion destroyed most of the structure, which was then raised and replaced by a motel.

To the left is a small structure which may be the one seen in many views near both the bath house and the hotel and which may have been an office.

A few trees amidst a sitting area with an umbrella and some furniture are also of note.  At the lower left is the name of resort in black lettering, though notice how the letters "Vida Min" are distinct from the rest and are located on what looks like a small post at the border of the badminton court.  Not sure, though, if that means anything.

The postally used card has a one-cent stamp, a postmark from Placentia (La Vida had a rural route designation through that town's post office), an address to some folks from Quakertown, Pennsylvania (about the most appropriate name for a community in the state as could be) and a short message that the sender was readying to go to Santa Catalina Island but also noted that "we went hier [sic] for one week."

While there were other La Vida postcards issued during the 1940s, this one by Martin may be somewhat rare.  In any case, it is a nice little view of another aspect of the springs.  Clicking on the image opens it with a larger view in a separate window.

21 October 2013

La Vida Mineral Springs Water Tank's Good Samaritan Again!

Sometime over the last few days, presumably during the weekend, the recent spate of graffiti on the old La Vida Mineral Springs water tank was painted over.

It is assumed this good act was done by the same good samaritan who has covered previous tagging efforts, unless another person took it upon themselves to take on the good deed.

In any case, whoever stepped up, kudos to them.  There is still some graffiti on the side of the base, but who can complain when the worst of it was brushed away!

As noted before, the old tank, dating back many decades, was long hidden from view by the dense growth of plant material before the November 2008 fire, now approaching its fifth anniversary, burned away the cover and exposed the tank to endure several bouts of tagging.

Thanks again to whoever it was who came to its rescue yet again.

15 October 2013

Memorializing by Graffiti?

Well, however the previous posts were expressed regarding the death of driver Abel Preciado, who crashed into a power pole in front of the old La Vida Mineral Springs site, and the two roadside memorials that sprung up afterward, the sight yesterday afternoon of the defacing of the surviving La Vida water tank, which has the deceased's first name on it, is a clear indication that someone close to him just couldn't leave well enough alone.

It's one thing to ponder a snap decision that led to tragedy, but deliberation in defacing something that doesn't belong to you actually takes away a lot of the sympathy manifested in the aftermath of mid-September's accident.

Why the two memorials weren't sufficient to express what happened when a tagging seemed like a good idea isn't really worth asking.

Is it too much to ask the good samaritan(s) responsible for painting over previous bouts of graffiti on the old tank to help once again?

10 October 2013

A New Carbon Canyon Roadside Memorial

In recent days, a second roadside memorial has appeared for Abel Preciado, who died last month when a car he was driving crashed into a power pole in front of the old La Vida Mineral Springs property on the Brea side of Carbon Canyon.

This monument is on the pole replacing the one destroyed in the crash and is much more elaborate than the first memorial located a little further east.

As the photos here show, a great deal of attention was paid to the memory of the deceased, including handwritten notes, stickers, and a remarkable photograph of Preciado on a piece of the Camaro that he was driving when the accident occurred.

Clearly, this was a person who meant a great deal to his family and friends and this remarkable tribute is all the more lamentable because he was only twenty.

09 October 2013

Carbon Canyon Road Closure In Effect

UPDATE, 9:20 P.M.:  Looks like the two-hour guesstimate was just that.  Traffic seems to be moving freely in both directions, so the accident looks to be cleared.

Carbon Canyon Road is closed right now in both directions because of a traffic accident between Canon Lane and Canyon Hills Road.

Coming in from the Chino Hills side the backup is light and travelers are turned around at Canon Lane, but there are a great many cars on the eastbound side from Brea and there doesn't appear to be anyone at the moment turning them around at Canyon Hills Road.

A brief chat with Sheriff's Department officers at Canon Lane didn't yield too much information, other than that the closure could be up to a couple of hours, thought the officer said he couldn't say for sure.

No other information about the accident could be obtained because they were busy turning people around to head back towards Chino Hills.

08 October 2013

Sol de México Closes in Olinda Village

This is hardly new news, having taken place a few weeks back, but Sol de México, a great family-owned Mexican restaurant in the Olinda Villa shopping center, closed its doors.

The restaurant business is a tough one, obviously, but operating one in the decaying center was, undoubtedly, doubly (triply?) difficult and it is perhaps amazing that the eatery lasted as long as it did.

The food there was really good, especially the camarones a la diabla (shrimp with spicy mole, or sauce), which this blogger had to take diablita (or about half-strength.)  The cheese enchiladas and the caldo de pescado (fish stew) were also excellent.  And, the chips were homemade, as was the salsa, which offered a citrus tang not often found.  An ice cold Negra Modelo was a nice complement to a meal.

The place had been called Las Redes for years, before it closed and was briefly replaced by an Italian restaurant that was quite good for as little as it lasted.  Now, Sol de México gave it a good run, but has left yet another empty storefront in the 1960s-era center that is an anomaly in these days of strip malls and flashy shopping centers.

Supporting family-owned restaurants is always a good idea in the face of greater and greater pressure by the big chains, but as with the Mongolian BBQ place that just closed in Chino Hills recently, the market is a tough one to survive in.

Thanks to the folks who ran Sol de México and gave it their best shot!