Big Tree Park

Carol & I stepped back in time at a popular tourist destination. I first saw the Senator in 1960. I remember the car ride from Bayside, Va. to Orlando with my dad, mom, and three sisters.  It was a hot balmy summer day, driving with the windows open, no A/C, and we noticed the Big Tree Park sign along road 17/92 and my dad decided to take a break, stop and check it out. At that time there was a trodden path through the woods that led to the Senator and Lady Liberty, two very big trees. I wasn’t acquainted with the woods being so dark and thick.  I remember it felt a bit eery. As we walked toward The Senator, the balmy feeling increased. Seeing the tree ahead I couldn’t believe its size, it was definitely the biggest tree that I’ve ever seen. Now visitors walk through a natural hydric hammock swamp and make way on a boardwalk to the former site of “The Senator”: Before the fire, The Senator was approximately a 3,500-year-old National Champion Bald Cypress Tree. with a diameter of 17.5 Ft. and 118 Ft. high. The story behind the fire is a sad one.  Carol and I had visited the Senator in 1975, shortly after we were married. 

A memorial has been developed that includes interpretive signage along the newly renovated boardwalk, a playground piece that mimics a bald cypress tree stump and a clone of “The Senator” that was planted near the playground. The name for the clone is “The Phoenix”, and it’s growing at a fast rate. Big Tree Park is also home to the Senator’s sister tree, “Lady Liberty”, an approximately 2,000-year-old Bald Cypress Tree. This property was donated to Seminole County by Senator M.O. Overstreet and dedicated by President Calvin Coolidge in 1929.

There is a picnic area with a pavilion, a rubberized surface playground area, restrooms and ample parking.   There is currently no admission cost.
SEE FLICKR GALLERY:
Big Tree Park

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Wild Hare Kitchen and Garden Emporium

Today, Art and I took on an adventure in Old Longwood, Florida. We found this unique organic gourmet grocery shop that buys and sells locally, carrying locally-sourced eggs, produce, honey & milk, plus garden supplies.  They’re located at 335 N Ronald Reagan Blvd  Longwood, FL 32750, directly across the street from the beautiful historic houses.

A Local Good Clean Fair Food They Bring the Farm to You! Local Produce, Plants, Seeds, Raw Milk, Yogurt, Kefir, Grass-Fed Meats, Broth Making Supplies, Jams, Pickles, Lacto-Fermented Kimchi and Sauerkraut, Raw Cheeses, Honey, Pastured Soy and Corn Free Eggs, Handmade Soaps, Naturally Made Cosmetics and Cleaning Products.  

Their egg selection included duck and quail eggs.   Besides having packaged teas, a hearty, flavorful ginger herb tea is available to taste for free or purchase by the ounce or jug.  Bottled savory sauces, glass-jar pickled vegetables, and vegan pastries are among other unique items.
SEE FLICKR GALLERY:
Wild Hare Kitchen and Garden Emporium