Wednesday, August 26, 2009

There's something about a gazebo...

...that says something about a town and a way of life. Especially in the hot days of summer.

A gazebo is a focal point for community events and I guess that we've always had one at our town Square, whether it was a 4th of July celebration in the early days -- or as a backdrop to the recent high school band concert. It is part of an inviting outdoor civic life that suggests we forgo contemporary air conditioned seclusion and the TV for a few hours and join the crowd -- almost always a great idea.

The other of our major gazebo venues over at the Sharlot Hall Museum grounds. (In this case, a fine opportunity for me to point out that there's no better combination than a gazebo and a brass band.) Though it is often home to musicians of various genres, periodically I see it being set up for a wedding or other special event.

While my mother lived over at Las Fuentes Assisted Living, we enjoyed afternoons at this pretty portable gazebo. Unfortunately, it did suffer from the winds and weather; I don't know if it is still there or not.

I'm envious of the folks who built their own private gazebo among the granites on the west side of town. What a lovely spot to enjoy a lemonade and a mystery novel on a lazy afternoon! Not bad for a party, either.

This being the west, people might quibble whether this structure is a ramada or a gazebo; my vote goes to the latter, as much for the privacy latticework as for the comparatively small size.

Memphis, which I visited last summer, was a great place for gazebos, especially on estates with large expanses of green lawn, sheltered by huge trees. Can't help imagining crinolines, bonnets and plenty of mint juleps. Though I wonder about the mosquitoes in the bad old days. The FNFM (Famous Niece from Memphis) helped me locate the local summer houses (you do recall that term, don't you?).

The ONFM (Other Niece from Memphis) drove me far out into the Tennessee countryside one day, where we saw these gazebos. More rustic in design and materials than their city cousins. More my style.

This lovely shelter overlooking the mighty Mississippi was featured at the National Ornamental Metal Museum. Yes, I'd gladly accept a copy of this belvidere, especially if the view came with it. As you might gather, it is made of iron -- and it is certainly ornamental. Quite the contrast to the so-called "gazebo" package I caught at one of the big box stores recently. Strictly for a casual hot dog and 6-pack scene, I would say.


Antipodean Curmudgeon said...

A most thoughtful put-together on gazebos. The previous two posts also are excellent--maybe you can get a job as an editor or something.

Please note: the large brass horn at the right is a conventional bass horn cum tuba.


Steve said...

Gazebos give a place that small town feel.

Jarart said...

We thoroughly enjoyed the post on gazebos. When we travel, I like seeing them in the small town squares. They are a nice place for people to gather. And I have to say, I think Prescott's gazebo is quite pretty.

Anonymous said...

This post is SOOOO making me miss Prescott, and Arizona in general.


Need. To. Get. To. Courthouse. Square. Soon. Ahk!

~Anon in AV.

P.S. Missing The Raven Cafe' too.

Granny J said...

bro -- now I finally know the diff between a tuba and a sousaphone! Tnx.

steve -- you're right -- I can't imagine a gazebo in Chicago or NYC. Especially not in LA/

jarart -- my absolutely most favorite gazebo, from many years ago, was in Fernandina, FL, on a tiny spit of land out in the bay. Tiday changes had gradually been eroding away the great lawn of that particular estate.

anon av -- just FYI, the roof garden is finally open at The Raven.

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