Jeff’s Odd Destinations: Trees of Mystery

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If there is one thing about California, it’s that it’s probably the American Capital of Attractions, Vacation Spots and Tourist Traps. They seem to have everything to see, the San Diego Zoo, Disneyland, Knott’s Berry Farm and that is not including the famous beaches and cities. Good Gravy, Cali, don’t hog all the tourists. You’re soon gonna make the 49 other states scrape the barrel to get some visitors.


Anyway, enough complaining, back to business. There is one particular Roadside Oddity in the Golden State in the town of Klamath in the Del Norte County that I find of great interest, a strange woodland known as “The Trees of Mystery.” Awesome Name, right?

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The park, now claiming to be the oldest redwood nature attraction, first opened in 1931 by Carl Bruno probably hoping to expand the regions economy beyond logging (a bit ironic as we will later get to). It was originally a fishing camp but evolved into a roadside oddity/amusement park/natural preserve named “Wonderland Redwood Park” and later “Kingdom of Trees.” It got its current name in 1946 when, returning from military service, Ray Thompson bought out the park. His family has run the place since. The original attractions are various trees growing in unique and unusual ways. They include the…

  • Cathedral Tree: Nine trees growing out of a large stump in a semicircle. Easter services and wedding are held here each year.
  • Candelabra Tree: A once mighty Sequoia that fell over. Still not dead, it’s branches grow to the sky like like candles.
  • Octopus Tree: Lots of roots going this way and that way. You can even crawl underneath the tree!

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Trust me, there are too many of them to talk about right now. We need to address the starring attraction of the Trees of Mystery: the Lord of Lumberjacks himself, in person, Paul Bunyan with Babe the Blue Ox! Standing at almost fifty feet with ax in hand, Paul waves as visitors come to visit his wooden wonderland. He can tell jokes and riddles, chew the fat with folks and predict the weather (if the trees are all bent in any direction, then its windy!) Could this be due to a voice actor in a hidden room? Nah, I’m pretty sure that it’s Paul for real. The Lumberjack Giant lumbered in when Ray first got ahold of the property. He was first made out of paper-maché but fell apart within a year due to rain. I mean seriously! Did anyone not see that coming? Luckily smarter heads prevailed and Paul has been refitted with more sturdy material. It’s not completely Bunyan without Babe, of course, as the Big Blue Beef was added in 1951. He would snort and blow smoke out of his nostrils when he first came but has been on better behavior now due to scaring the kiddies.


These, of course, are not the only attractions available. There is the Trail of Tall Tales full of chainsaw carved wooden sculptures. Many of them tell stories of Paul and his lumber camp, but some are original creations. You can take a ride on the Sky Trail gondola. If you’re a nature lover you can take a walk in the Wilderness Trail for a walk in the beauty and majesty of the woods for the sake of it, nothing special just a normal forest. At the gift shop there is the six roomed End of the Trail Museum, containing a lifetime of collected Native American artifacts from across the continental United States. The museum is free of charge for all visitors to the Trees of Mystery.


Nearby is the charming, “vintage,” Motel Trees. These 23 rooms are all individually forest themed with details and beauty. Adjacent to it is the Forest Cafe for a hearty good ‘ole fashion bite to eat. Here you can have your dinner under the Klamath River or under the sky of the Redwoods…. well, OK, its individually themed dining rooms, but they are amazing. I hope they serve up a good stack of pancakes.

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Oh man, this is too cool for me to hold in. Years ago as a kid, I remember visiting the Trees of Mystery. I can still remember seeing Paul Bunyan. For quite some time after that I was enthusiastic with tall tales especially with the mythos of the lumberjack giant. You can look up more information on the website here at But if you have seen the film Axe Giant pleas don’t bring it up. I doubt Paul is very flattered at the portrayal of him in that movie.


The Legend of Spyro: Trilogy(Review)

Hello, my name is Charles and I’m here to review all three The Legend of Spyro games for the PlayStation 2. The Legend of Spyro games are a reboot of the entire Spyro the Dragon game series and are consisted numerically as The Legend of Spyro 1: A New Beginning, The Legend of Spyro 2: The Eternal Night and The Legend of Spyro 3: Dawn of the Dragon.


The Legend of Spyro: The New Beginning reintroduces us to the dragon named Spyro and his companion/friend/brother Sparx the Dragonfly as well as follow their adventures to save the four guardian dragons each in command of a different element from the black dragon Cynder. The guardians consist of Terrador (Earth), Cyril (Ice), Volteer (Electricity) and Ignitus (Fire).

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The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night follows the Continuing adventures of Spyro as he seeks out an ancient dragon of immeasurable wisdom known only as the Chronicler, tries to save his former enemy Cynder and foil the evil ambitions of Gaul: the Ape King. While doing so, Spyro not only regains the ability to utilize the elemental powers of the four guardian dragons but he also gains a new ability called Dragon Time which gives Spyro the power to temporarily slow down time.

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The Legend of Spyro: Dawn of the Dragon concludes the adventures of Spyro, who along with both Sparx and Cynder as well as their new friend Hunter of Avalar (Cheetah) ventures forth towards a final confrontation with the Dark Master who is also known as the dragon called Malefor. While Sypro wields the elemental powers of Fire, Ice, Electricity and Earth, Cynder wields four dark powers consisting of Wind, Poison, Fear and Shadow.


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In conclusion, I found these three games in total to be an extremely incredible improvement over the original storyline which of course is saying a lot.


Video Games Live(Review)

Hello, my name is Charles and I’m here to review Video Games Live. Video Games Live is a concert featuring video game music as well as a collaborated/synchronized mixture of lighting, Effects and interactive segments.


Video Games Live tours the entire world and was originally founded/created/hosted by Tommy Tallarico and Jack Wall in 2002. On July 6, 2005, Video Games Live made its big debut at the Hollywood Bowl in Los Angeles, California.


In conclusion, Video Games Live has been around for 16 years and is scheduled to perform in Phoenix, AZ at Symphony Hall on March 12, 2018 at 7:30 PM. Plus, I found Video Games Live to be an event where one relives one’s youth as well as experiences Tommy’s dream of merging video games with the musical sounds of a symphony orchestra/rock concert.

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Christmas BY Keri

I’m going to Flagstaff this winter for Christmas and Christmas Day too. It’s going to be so much fun. We are going to open presents and eat tamales and rice and beans. We are probably going to the movies too. I hope it snows up there too. We are just spending just a couple of days there. I’m really excited too. This is are first year up there in Flagstaff. We are going to have a nice breakfast too. 


Phantasy Star Universe (Review)

Hello, my name is Charles and I’m here to review Phantasy Star Universe for the PlayStation 2.


This game takes place in a far-off galaxy called the Gurhal system which is comprised of a single sun orbited by three planets and one space station. Humans thrive on a space station called the GUARDIANS Colony which is systematically located at the centermost point of all three worlds. The species corresponding to each interplanetary location are as followed: the planet Parum is populated by a race of android-like beings called CASTs, the planet Newdaiz is populated by a race of elvish beings called Newmans and the planet Moatoob is populated by a race of humanoid animals called Beasts.


Some of the characters in this game consist of Ethan Waber (Human/Male)(main hero), Karen Erra (Newman/Female)(heroine), Tonnio Rhima (Beast/Male)(hero), Lucaim Nav (CAST/Male)(hero), Renvolt Magashi (CAST/Male)(main villain), Mirei Mikuna AKA the Divine Maiden (Newman/Female)(Karen’s sister) and Alfort Tylor (Beast/Male)(rogue).


In conclusion, I positively found this game to be both challenging and exhilarating than most RPG games in existence.

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My Little Pony: The Movie

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The ponies of Equestria prepare for their first Friendship Festival, which is overseen by Princess Twilight Sparkle in Canterlot. The festivities are interrupted by an invasion of monstrous storm creatures commanded by the broken-horned unicorn Tempest Shadow, who uses magical obsidian orbs to petrify Twilight’s fellow princesses; Princess Celestia unsuccessfully urges Princess Luna to seek help south of Equestria, uttering “the queen of the hippo” before being interrupted. Twilight flees the city alongside her five pony friends – Pinkie Pie, Rainbow Dash, Rarity, Applejack, and Fluttershy – and her assistant dragon, Spike, setting out with them in search of the aforementioned “hippos”. Tempest is contacted by her superior, the Storm King, who reminds her to gather all of Equestria’s princesses in order for him to activate his mystical staff with their magic, promising to restore her horn in exchange.

In the desert city of Klugetown, a feline con artist named Capper falsely offers to guide the seven friends to the hippos, secretly intending to sell the ponies to settle a debt to a local criminal. However, he develops a genuine friendship with them after Rarity generously mends his coat. Twilight discovers an atlas in Capper’s manor that reveals the “hippos” to be hippogriffs, exposing Capper’s treachery to the others. When Tempest arrives in pursuit of Twilight, the seven evade her aboard a delivery airship. Tempest interrogates Capper over Twilight’s whereabouts, but he deliberately misdirects Tempest to atone for deceiving the seven.

The airship’s birdlike crew reluctantly allow the seven passage during a lunch break, revealing themselves to be former pirates that have been forced into the Storm King’s service. Rainbow Dash persuades the pirates to defy orders and take the seven to the hippogriffs’ kingdom on Mount Aris, performing a Sonic Rainboom that inadvertently gives their location away to Tempest. Disgruntled by her friends’ carelessness, Twilight single-handedly engineers her group’s escape in a makeshift hot air balloon, leaving Tempest to destroy the ship with the pirates and Capper on board.

The seven reach Mount Aris to find the kingdom deserted. Following a singing voice to a fountain, they are pulled down a whirlpool where the singer, the seapony Princess Skystar, gives them air bubble helmets and takes them to her underwater home of Seaquestria.  Princess Skystar identifies her kind as the hippogriffs, transformed by a magic pearl used by her mother, Queen Novo, to hide from the Storm King’s assault; Queen Novo demonstrates by turning the ponies into sea ponies and Spike into a pufferfish. When Queen Novo denies them the pearl to use against the Storm King, Twilight desperately attempts to steal the pearl while letting her oblivious friends socialize with the seaponies as a distraction. Pinkie Pie nearly changes Queen Novo’s mind until Twilight triggers an alarm, prompting the outraged queen to banish the entire group to the surface.

After arguing with her friends over her actions, an ashamed Twilight is abducted by Tempest and brought before the Storm King in Canterlot to have her magic absorbed; Tempest gains Twilight’s sympathy upon divulging how her own friends feared and shunned her for her dangerously unstable magic after she lost her horn in a monster attack as a filly. Meanwhile, Twilight’s friends reunite with Capper, the pirates, and the hippogriff Princess Skystar to infiltrate Canterlot and rescue her. Seeing the group repel his army, the Storm King uses his empowered staff to unleash a tornado on the city, betraying Tempest as well. Twilight saves Tempest from the tornado and reconciles with her friends, working together with them to take the staff from the Storm King and disperse the storm. The Storm King hurls an obsidian orb at the seven in a final effort to reclaim the staff, but Tempest jumps in his way, petrifying them both. The Storm King’s body falls and shatters, while Twilight and her friends use the staff’s magic to revive the petrified ponies and repair the damaged city.

The Friendship Festival resumes, and the ponies celebrate with all of the allies they have made on their adventure. Tempest is convinced by Twilight to join them by using controlled sparks from her still broken horn to provide a fireworks display, happily accepting the friendship of Twilight and her friends


by Sydney

Jeff’s Odd Destinations: Valley of the Moon

Valley of the Moon

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First order of business, I have an important announcement to make. After much thought I have decided that “Jeff’s Eccentric People, Places and Things,” has to awkward a title. While I am pleased with how my work is coming out I decided to go with a different name. While “Eccentric Person of the Month,”  and “Unusual Place of the Month,” my old titles from the Seeds’ Newsletter have been suggested  I decided on “Jeff’s Odd Destinations” and “Jeff’s Gallery”

Now for a very special trip today, I take you on a very mysterious journey to a land of wonder and imagination. To Tucson Arizona’s mystic and mysterious Valley of the Moon. For over eighty years this strange land has enchanted children of all ages. Its story begins with the coming of the Mountain Gnome, George Phar Legler. Born in Evansville, Indiana somewhere between 1884 and 1887, George was a former post office clerk who was forced into an early retirement due to an automobile accident. He was also a spiritualist and believer in fairies. He moved to Arizona around 1917 and bought the 2.25 acres that soon became his life’s work. Nearby lived a clergyman whose teenage daughter was dying of tuberculosis. George created a little mountain scene with a waterfall and a bathtub lake just outside her window. She could leave her room and explore the serene landscape with her imagination. When she died George comforted her mother by telling her she had moved to the spirit world where she would live forever now. He found his life calling and expanded on the small landscape and started building the Valley in 1923.


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With the help of friends, family and locals George Legler constructed his “secret” fairyland and wild animal sanctuary, opening up officially in 1926 and full of homemade rock decorations, buildings and sculptures of wonder opening to the public . George lived on the property giving tours, telling stories and performing magic tricks as the Mountain Gnome. During the Valley’s original run it did not allow boys in-between the ages of 12 to 21 as visitors in because George thought that they would upset the fairies for not believing or being imaginative for the “magic” to work. The Valley was open until 1963. George would live by himself in his now abandoned fairyland until 1971, when he got an unexpected surprise visit from a group of High Schoolers. While the park never officially closed, visitors were coming less and less. The Valley was falling into disrepair due to vandals and George’s health was failing due to his age.


The boys apparently thought they all shared the same dream of a friendly gnome. Apparently they decided it was no dream and went on a quest to find an almost forgotten part of their childhood, climbed over the fence and rediscovered the Valley. While George at first thought they were vandals, the Mountain Gnome gave them an over two hour tour and told them that they were welcome back any time. The boys later formed the Valley of the Moon Restoration Association (VOMRA) now called the George Phar Legler Society (GPLS). The Valley of the Moon was listed on the Arizona Historic Places Register in 1975 and George was awarded the Tucson Outstanding Citizen Award a year before he died in 1982 around age 95. It is also an official National register of Historic Places under Pima County in 2011 and a Historic Landmark for the city as of 2016. The Valley is now owned mainly by the GPLS and partly by the Boy and Girl Scouts of America.

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Now, I have never been to the Valley of the Moon (yet) so I can only judge from what I have read and studied but the park contains a large number of statues and buildings made from scraps of old toys, and junk George found and put together. This includes the Wizard’s Tower, a bridge, a cave, a homemade pond and an artificial flower garden. In 2008 a number of sculptures were added from closed down mini golf course named Magic Carpet Golf now a car dealership. A house that a friend of George Legler helped build in the Valley became a storage room for props and costumes stood on the site but burned down not too long ago. Today the park is kept by members of the GPLS and volunteers. I don’t know if it is still an animal sanctum however.

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The Valley of the Moon is open on the first Saturday of every month for free and paid for visits are on special occasions and holidays. As well, exploring the Fairyland of the Desert shows are performed by members of the GPLS, many with the audience participating. You can find more information about the Valley of the Moon, George Legler, and helping to keep the wonder and magic alive at the website The Valley is at 2544 E. Allen Rd. Tucson AZ and can be contacted at 520-323-1331 and