Day 24-27 Titusville/St. Augustine   Leave a comment

Titusville, Florida

Arriving in Titusville, we had a social which included 2 couples that we traveled with to Alaska last summer. It’s so great to meet people along the way.

We played a game, Straight to a Straight, Cross to a Cross, Straight to a Cross, or Cross to a Straight.

Hmmmm trying to figure it out. What fun!

Titusville, Home of the Kennedy Space Center and Astronaut Hall of Fame.

We started out at the Astronaut Hall of Fame.

Remembering the loss of the three Apollo 1 crewmembers in 1967 during a routine simulated launch test, the 1986 loss of the seven Challenger STS-51L crewmembers 73 seconds after liftoff when an o-ring failed, and the loss of the seven Columbia STS-107 crewmembers in 2003 when the space shuttle broke apart during re-entry over east Texas, 16 minutes from home was a somber experience.

Since 1981 the Kennedy Space Center’s shuttle landing facility serves as the primary landing site for all space shuttle missions. The first space shuttle, Columbia, launched from Kennedy Space Center on April 12, 1981, with astronauts John Young and Bob Crippen aboard. This began the new era of “reusable” space shuttles.

Pictured below is the vehicle assembly building. Hard to believe that after they assemble the shuttle that they can get it out of that building.

This year we were actually allowed to drive over to the launching sites! WHAT A TREAT!

Before leaving the complex, we hopped on the Space Shuttle Flight and Landing Simulator. We were able to view the launch control center for the Saturn V, which sent Apollo 8 astronauts into orbit around the moon.

It was exciting to sit there and imagine what it felt like to be in the control room at that time. Watching the original film of the first landing on the moon sure brought back memories.

Before moving on, we had another social and played another game.

And the winner was “Birthday Boy John!”

Arriving in St. Augustine, we celebrated with a S’mores party.

Sandy, who traveled with us on the Grand Circle last Fall lives in St. Augustine and stopped by for a visit.

It seems that Florida is a VERY popular state. Every stop we made, we met up with someone we had traveled with on previous trips. WE LOVE IT!

St. Augustine, the oldest city in the USA. Mission Nombre de Dios is where the first Spanish Catholic Mass was conducted in 1565 by Father Lopez, whose statue still marks the spot. President John F. Kennedy said that this site was the most sacred acre for Catholics in the United States.

The grounds are very beautiful gardens along the water. It’s so relaxing to walk around or sit and enjoy the view.

The oldest street, Aviles Street

Castillo de San Marcos is the oldest masonry fort in the United States. Construction began in 1672 by the Spanish when Florida was a Spanish territory. It was under the British from 1763 until 1784. In 1784 it went back to the Spanish when Spain reclaimed Florida. Florida was not given to the US until 1819.

We were lucky enough to be there for the canon shot.

The original entrance into St. Augustine

Flagler Memorial Presbyterian Church was built in memory of Flagler’s daughter, who died shortly after childbirth and granddaughter who only lived a few days. He spared no expense. It commissioned it to be built and they built it within a year. Flagler, his daughter, granddaughter, and one of his wives are buried in the rotunda.

The oldest house in the USA. You are no longer allowed to take photos inside. The photos below were taken a few years ago.

The oldest wood school house in the USA

Fountain of Youth

The ranger explained that the water is very hard with sulfur, but this particular day it was not bad. I remember the last time we were there, the water was definitely worse.

The old Flagler hotel, which is now a college.

Flagler & Lightner Museum. It was once Flagler’s hotel. Below left was the lobby.

Flagler built the first hotel to bring in tourism. When a hotel was built across the street from his hotel, the furniture that was to arrive on the train, which was owned by Flagler, disappeared… It was not on the train! Hmmmmmmm so here was a hotel on opening day with no furniture. It didn’t take long before he sold to Flagler at pennies on the dollar.

Below, now a ballroom, was once an indoor swimming pool, complete with deep end.

It’s difficult to tell in the photo how the floor graduates to where the deep end once was. The tables are at the deep end. The photo below was taken when it was used as a swimming pool.

Bill liked the grandfather clock which was hand carved wood.

And it still works! Look how tall it is.


Posted March 23, 2014 by carolnbill in Adventure Caravans, Friends, RV, Travel

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