Last Friday evening was the kickoff to the “Music in The City” series that our town has each summer. The first Friday of the month the Main Street that goes through downtown is closed down and there is free live music on a stage at dusk and it is an all around great time! There is usually a food truck or two and the local eateries are also open late as well. We started attending these events last summer and it was so much fun to see so many people come together and just hang out and listen to music and be in community. I met Atom and the kids down there as I worked last Friday and went home to change and then walked down to meet up with them.
Everything about the evening was PERFECT. The weather, the company, everything. Our friend Joey’s band Roustabout was playing and they are seriously so so so talented!!!! I was sitting in my lawn chair eating my giant ice cream cone from our favorite ice cream and soda shop Antiqology and thought, THIS is happiness. Small town life is our calling. I can’t even begin to tell you how many times Atom and I have looked at each other throughout the past year & said “how did we get so lucky to live here?”
As I was looking around I had another realization that made me literally laugh out loud. Atom asked what was so funny. I looked up and down the street and said, “have you ever noticed that our downtown is basically Main Street, Disneyland?” He looked at me like I had two heads.
Ok, I know what you are thinking. How could our little town *possibly* be compared to the happiest place on earth? Stay with me as I explain.
Growing up in Southern California, my family made yearly trips to Disneyland and I have always been a huge Disney fan. It has always been a magical place for me. That feeling you get when you walk through the gates and into the park. Main Street, Disneyland in particular has a lot to offer to make a person happy.
As I was sitting in my lawn chair last Friday listening to the music I realized that there were so many parallels that our little downtown has to Main Street Disneyland. We have an ice cream and soda shop (Antiqology), we have a coffee and home made candy shop (The Party Shop), a bakery (Sugar Mama’s), several amazing restaurants (The famous Nick’s Kitchen, The Berg, & The Brick House Grill to name a few), an old theatre that is currently for sale where local plays were once held. Our downtown has parades, live music, a water fountain, clock tower and I could go on and on. Are you starting to see the similarities?!
Many of the buildings have been restored and painted and brought back to life and are absolutely stunning. At least to this city slicker.
The city building/police department looks like a castle so there’s that…..
Even the bricks are magical! We have many yellow brick roads as well! (Not to mention our building is made of half yellow brick)
Another thing about Disneyland that has always captivated me since I was a child are how many colorful flowers, plants and trees are in the park. Over the past 2 weeks our town has literally EXPLODED with color. It has truly been a sight to see happen seemingly almost overnight. We don’t remember seeing it happen last year because everything was already green before we moved into town but it seems spring took her sweet time arriving this year. Flowering trees that I have never seen in person before have literally taken my breath away with their beauty on our walks and the tulips and daffodils are blooming in everyone’s gardens and popping up all over the place. I have taken a ton of photos because I’m like a kid in a candy store when I see these trees in full bloom and it has been hard to choose which ones to include in this post. So I’ll throw some of my favorites below from around town:
(Magnolia photo credit- Shannon Zuercher)
While we might not have Mickey & Minnie & the gang running around nor the Main Street Electrical Parade, I think our little town is pretty magical and we are pretty darn happy here. Our daughter (age 4) is always telling us there are all kinds of castles in our town. She tells her friends that she is a princess and lives in a castle herself. I prefer to think of our building as the “Haunted Mansion.” 😉
Find magic where you are friends! If you look you will find it. Promise.