Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Winter Park

When we made the decision to move to Florida, we knew not to fall into the trap of thinking, "Oh, I'm sure our family will follow us."  Chances are, they won't.  We knew we had to be okay with only seeing them once or twice a year, unless we move back north.  And we are okay with that (for now).

But, of course, it would be wonderful if they did move down here.  Unfortunately, both my sister and my father have a less than favorable view of Florida, so when Kristine came down for a visit, I set out to show her that there's more to Florida than subdivisions, strip malls, and sinkholes.  We spent a good bit of time driving around Clermont, checking out the older neighborhoods.  We also went up to Winter Park for the day.

Winter Park is in the northeast area of Orlando.  All I really know about it is that it's upscale and trendy, there's a college and some art museums.  I wasn't expecting a whole lot, but boy, was I surprised.

We went to Rollins College, to the Cornell Fine Arts Museum.  Kristine is a big fan of Kara Walker, and they had a timely exhibit of her work, focusing on her Civil War pieces.  It was a good start to Black History Month for sure.

The college itself is lovely.  Lots of mature trees with moss dripping from the branches, beautiful flowers, brick streets, and lovely buildings.  We went for a short walk behind the museum, along the water.  Above, Fiona is pointing out what looks like an eye in the tree.

Here the kids are being very silly, posing in front of the museum.  It was just so beautiful.

When we were done in the museum, we hopped over to Hannibal Square and part of Park Avenue.  Kristine totally fell in love (or as much as she can in Florida).  I'm sure she can describe it better than I can, but it was definitely something I didn't expect to see in Florida.  It was definitely a trendy, more indie area.  Other areas of Park Ave have more of the upscale brand boutiques, but the areas we were in weren't quite like that.

There were dog bowls outside of lots of shops, and lots and lots of green - in hanging plants, window baskets, planters, etc.  Some of it had a bit of a Art Deco feel.

I just loved this second floor here, with all the hanging plants and boxes along the railing.  Our best guess is that they're hotel rooms, but I'm really not sure.  This was across the street from Peterbrooke Chocolatier, where we got a little snack.

I'm so glad we got over to Winter Park.  I think we nearly have Kristine convinced.  And on another note, we also saw a paella bar that has all you can eat paella for $13.  Doug can't wait to go.

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