Roadside Art on Route 20, New York

Before we moved to New York state many years ago we never thought of it as a beautiful place since we illogically equated the whole state with New York City. Then when we first drove in we were unreasonably surprised to discover how beautiful it was!

Well, that hasn’t changed. Recently we dropped our son off at a Civil Air Patrol Encampment near Albany and decided to take the scenic route back along Route 20. As it turned out, we wished we had allowed for an extra day because it was so beautiful. Being out of practice with leisurely road trips we didn’t stop nearly as often as we should have to photograph the interesting things we saw, and we really needed an extra day because we ran out of time and daylight! One particular place we saw was so interesting that we turned around and went back.

It began with a friendly wave…

Then we noticed the tree that the dog was looking at and realized…

…aliens had landed!

However, the M&M guy assured us the visitor was harmless,

although he couldn’t vouch for these two characters.

Paddington and Paddington, Jr. assured us we would get a better reception from the two ladies, who were a chatty pair.

They were friendly and helpful, and in turn said we should next go meet and talk with the Woodman across the way.

We were greeted with open arms and he introduced us to his friends, the Yard Guard.

A spider led the company while an ancient Soldier stood at his post and let her host, a slightly disquieting experience given her size.

When we left, we looked back on the faithful Soldier keeping his eternal silent vigil.

Kilroy was there to watch us as we left to continue our journey homeward on Scenic Route 20,

and a sunflower gave us a saucy wink good-bye, and we wished we could have stayed and visited longer.


16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Scott Harris
    Aug 18, 2012 @ 23:42:05

    I will just have to come up with it later . . . but there is a show on public TV . . . three guys travel all over the US and take video s of places just like the one on Route 20 . . . many interesting places they go, with a large used up roll of video tape, an interesting narrative voice, and a game of three way baseball catch when they stop to take a break. 🙂


  2. Scott
    Aug 22, 2012 @ 20:45:02

    It is called Rare Visions & Roadside Revelations; and it was not easy to find. I kept searching the net with key words. Don the Camera Guy is the one with the interesting voice. I copied the following words from their site:

    Randy Mason, Michael Murphy and Don the Camera Guy are your trusty guides on this tongue-in-cheek tour of 46 of the United States. Visit the legendary Garden of Eden, Dr. Evermor’s Forevertron, Howard Finster’s Paradise Gardens, the UCM Museum in Abita Springs, Louisiana, a giant concrete buffalo, sculptures made entirely from aluminum pull tabs, and a host of other rare visions to catch a curious traveler’s eye.

    Mike, Randy and Don the Camera Guy pose in front of the Big Ball of Twine with the Big Ball o’ VideotapeWhile their hair gets grayer, their eyesight poorer and backs a bit sorer every night, their joy at discovering artists and oddities along the road less traveled remains unchanged. And their Big Ball of Tape continues to grow!

    Watch full episodes of Rare Visions & Roadside Revelations
    Visit for information on sites featured on the program


    • Lloyd's of Rochester
      Aug 22, 2012 @ 22:24:16

      Very cool! Thanks for the info; I had never heard of the program before. I looked at the interactive map, too, which gives us some interesting ideas of places to check out. I did some more searching and here’s some places to watch some full episodes: (I think there were about 8) (the only full episode on youtube)
      Now I am going to have to take some time to sit down and do it!


      • Scott
        Aug 23, 2012 @ 21:23:11

        I had never heard of it before either and one night about bed time we kicked back and turned on the tv and there it was. We have caught it several times, usually later in the evening, I want to say ten-ish. Some of the places they travel are quite neat and/or interesting and some are really bizarre. Some of the attractions these men come across make your Route 20 very tame. Anyway, enjoy . . . I thought you might get a kick out of it.


        • Scott
          Aug 23, 2012 @ 21:52:35

          BTW, my daughter has a very nice blog with Blogger I think. Upon viewing my daughters site a few times and now yours I felt inspired and have begun the process . . . very green right now . . . a little here a little there . . . my picture there you see.


          • Lloyd's of Rochester
            Aug 24, 2012 @ 12:35:26

            Nice photo! If you haven’t already chosen a platform, I unabashedly recommend WordPress. I had Blogger, but I migrated over. I am working on reducing my exposure to Google products, and even though I do have a gmail account I philosophically object to the idea that one must set up an email with them just so you can use Blogger. Too Big Brother-ish.


            • reachingouttoothers
              Aug 25, 2012 @ 17:33:17

              I have chosen WordPress and I figure it may take me awhile figuring out what I want to do. I have never liked having to set up an email just to use something else . . . didn’t like that with Facebook. Here is how much I don’t like the Big Brother thing; I pulled the fuse out of my 2009 Chevy Colbalt so Onstar couldn’t be my Big Brother. I see and understand the benefit; but as you put it, too Big Brother-ish.

              Oh, and I like your word, “unabashedly”. 🙂


        • Lloyd's of Rochester
          Aug 24, 2012 @ 12:31:32

          When I was younger I would go on road trips with my grandparents – usually out west. The stuff you see out there is truly amazing. Route 20 is more scenic, but the guy with the characters at his home was too good to pass up. Maybe a few more items later. The Blonde Coyote, I am not. BTW, she has an amazing travel blog you might want to visit (also wordpress), but not about curious stuff, just everything. Very beautiful.


          • Scott
            Aug 25, 2012 @ 17:37:46

            I too have traveled out west with my grandparents; truly good memories. I’ll take a look at The Blonde Coyote blog.


            • Scott
              Aug 25, 2012 @ 18:04:52

              Ok now that is awesome . . . The Blonde Coyote travels everywhere. I need a budget like that or time or something. Very cool!


            • Scott
              Aug 26, 2012 @ 22:34:52

              I had not asked your permission to use your name, so I told Mary, theblondecoyote, that a friend suggested I take a look at her blog. Mary’s reply was, “Thanks Scott! I’m glad you found me. Tell your friend I said thanks for spreading the word! Cheers, Mary”

              I like how her self portraits are her feet at the bottom of a particular photo.


  3. Scott
    Aug 22, 2012 @ 20:51:15


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