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Archive for the ‘ History & Interesting Facts ’ Category


Not All Fall Colors Are in New England!

October 5th, 2017

When most people in the United States think of seeing fall colors, they plan on going to New England.  While there are certainly spectacular colors to be seen there, we westerners also have some much closer choices. In New England, the color changes generally start in the north and spread south as the season progresses.  In California, there is a progression as well, but it generally starts at the higher altitudes and spreads to the lower elevations.  Our color changes generally start in mid to late September so many places are in the middle of their season.  You can find a great article on... Read More

Solar Roadways, Imagine the Possibilities!

May 25th, 2014

This doesn’t exactly fit the category, but it is an interesting “fact”.  Here is an absolutely amazing idea that could easily become a reality.  This really is impressive, especially if the government is really working on it.  Not just for the roads but for all the other possible uses for various hardscapes around the country!  Let your imagination go wild with how this could be used.  Watch the video and then think of the possibilities: [embedit snippet=”solar-roadways”] Can you think of other possibilities for this?  How about collision avoidance beyond what... Read More

The History of Sourdough Starter

August 20th, 2013

Sourdough bread is a well known San Francisco treat. It is unique in that each batch takes a “sourdough starter” that is saved from the previous batch. Usually your initial starter is obtained from a friend but you can start your own as discussed in this article: Out of yeast? Don’t worry: It’s not hard to find. The feisty critters that make bread rise actually live all around us. In fact, the use of yeast in bread-making probably got its start accidentally, when “wild” yeast caused doughs meant for unleavened flatbreads to ferment. To this day, many bakers still use “wild”... Read More

San Francisco History and Interesting Facts: Who Didn’t Find the Bay

July 31st, 2013

It is interesting that Europeans sailed up and down the coast of California for nearly 200 years before the bay was finally discovered by a land party. The first of these was in 1542 when Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, a Portuguese navigator sailing the Spanish ship San Salvador traveled up the California coast. Later Cabrillo’s pilot, Bartolome Ferrelo sailed past the Bay twice more without seeing it although he is credited with sighting the Farallon Islands which lie just off the mouth of the Bay. A few years later, in 1579, Francis Drake, the English privateer who was to become a knight, landed... Read More

Why Cable Cars?

February 11th, 2013
Cable Car on California Street

Cable Cars are iconic symbols of San Francisco and attract over eight million riders each year. They offer the charm of Victorian San Francisco of the late 19th Century and provide transit to important destinations such as Powell and Market, Fisherman’s Wharf, Nob Hill and the Embarcadero. Riding the cable cars is easy. Simply purchase a MUNI “passport” ticket from any cable car conductor. MUNI Passport tickets are available for one day, three day or seven day use. In 1873 the first cable car line in San Francisco began public service. The Clay Street Line was estimated to cost... Read More

San Francisco History: Who “Discovered” San Francisco Bay?

November 12th, 2012

San Francisco Bay was discovered in 1769 when an expedition to Monterey Bay led by Gaspar de Portola, the Spanish appointed governor of California overshot its destination. On November 3rd, a scouting party lead by Sergeant Jose Ortega spotted a large estuary to the north. Ortega is credited with the discovery of San Francisco Bay. Upon realizing that they had gone too far, the party was disappointed and Portola led them back to the South.  Read More