Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Is Everybody Happy?

TWO MONTHS AGO (late post, huh?) I ended up on an emergency trip to Circleville, Ohio, population 13,485. Sah-loot!

At first glance it's like Mayberry in Pickney County. Once you get to walk around the place it becomes a real oddity. For one, it's called Circleville because it was originally built on top of an ancient Indian mound. The mound was a circle so they just made it part of the fortifications, putting an octagonal courthouse in the center with smaller circles inside for streets. Like this:

Eventually the citizens realized how cool that would look 200 years later and decided to get rid of it. In the 1830s a Circleville Squaring Committee was formed. They tore out the mounds and straightened the streets. Aw. The town brags that they are the first example of "urban renewal" in the country, predating Buffalo's attempts to erase their circular pattern by about 140 years. On the other hand, "Circleville Squaring Committee" could make a great band name.

A local artist recently painted this mural to celebrate their 100th annual Pumpkin Festival. (Three years were missed because of war. Wow did I learn too much.) Luckily I caught a perfect color match between the sky in the mural and the air.

Wittich's is the oldest confectionery store in America. The more you know!

The Ohio State fan shop

Main Street

The Hippie Hut had a special backroom for 18-and-overs only. When I went back there some hippie followed me in. They must be really protective of their penis bongs.

Note to self: never again do a Google Image Search for "penis bongs."

The "new" courthouse

The huge, old Armory/Library/Town Hall

Look at the cornice on that facade! That's freakin' outstanding.

But without getting into it, the people of Circleville were wonderful. The folks at the hospital were outstanding (free ambulance rides!), the police apparently filled up our gas tank before we left without telling us, and motel rooms were surprisingly cheap, even at one in the morning. The next time something weird goes down I hope it happens in Ted Lewis' hometown.

1 comment:

Brian Emerson said...

I can't believe you were in Circleville, OH and didn't stop by to see me!

It's only like 3 hrs away.

Pretty much the same time it takes to get here from Buffalo.