52 Weeks Of Donna's Life

Donna's Photo Challenge


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5 Bouncer

2584 Bouncer

At a recent Circle S Rodeo in the Myakka City area, I was able to photograph the pro bull riding event where participants are assigned a bull to ride and are rewarded points for the number of seconds they are able to stay on the back of that bull. This cowboy was able to ride his bull for almost the entire allotted time and had one of the highest scores for the night. However, that bull should have been given points for being one of the most effective “bouncers”!


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7 Catch Me If You Can

During an afternoon event of the "Circle S Ranch" Rodeo in Myakka, several frisky calves were set free within the show ring.  Young contestants (girls and boys aged eight to twelve years) were challenged to catch one of these calves and brome the winner.

During an afternoon event of the “Circle S Ranch” Rodeo in Myakka, several frisky calves were set free within the show ring. Young contestants (girls and boys aged eight to twelve years) were challenged to catch one of these calves and become the winner.

2557 Kids Catching Calf

And the winner is . . . A very strong and determined boy who just would not let go of the calf’s tail!


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3 An Expression of Love

Shown here is a portion of the traveling Wall with Expressions of Love.

Shown here is a portion of the traveling Wall with Expressions of Love.

On Veterans’ Day, we visited the Traveling Wall which was brought to the small park next to the Senior Friendship Center in Sarasota. It is a representation of The Wall in Washington D.C., a part of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Originally, it had 58,195 names indicating those involved in the Vietnam War and were either KIA (Killed In Action) or MIA (Missing In Action). The names are listed chronologically from 1959 to 1968 and, as of May 2011, there are 58,272 names. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs uses May 7, 1975 as the official end date for the Vietnam era. On May 15, 1975, eighteen U.S. servicemen were killed on the final day of a rescue operation. These appear as the last names listed on the timeline.

It is really quite an experience to see. Many who knew or had lost loved ones named on “The Wall” have left “An Expression of Love” in memory of those who made the ultimate sacrifice.

Major Michael Davis O’Donnell (who was KIA 2/7/1978) wrote this:

“If you are able, save for them a place inside of you and save one backward glance when you are leaving for the places they can no longer go.

Be not ashamed to say you loved them, though you may or may not have always. Take what they have taught you with their dying and keep it with your own.

And in that time when men decide and feel safe to call the war insane, take one moment to embrace those gentle heroes you left behind.”


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52 What’s Cooking

This is the new Manatee Technical Institute on Rt 70 about a mile west of I75. As part of their Food Service course, they have incorporated The Whetstone, a restaurant where their student chefs prepare and serve the food to diners.

Tiffany, one os the students in Food Service acted as our waitress.

At our noontime dinner, Tiffany, one of the students in Food Service acted as our waitress.

The salad chef was busily constructing her salad orders.

The salad chef was busily constructing her salad orders.

Our soup course arrived looking colorful and appetizing.

Our soup course arrived looking colorful and appetizing.

Meanwhile, the student chefs were assembling our main course.

Meanwhile, the student chefs were assembling our main course.

Our dinners appear ready and we are ready for them.

Our dinners appear ready and we are ready for them.

The grand finale -- Chocolate mousse !

The grand finale — Chocolate mousse !


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1. A Hot Ride

757-Isorivolta Rcng Car (Red)++

During a photo shoot at Sarasota, I spied this great looking low-slung beauty, the Varedo model of the Isorivolta racing car. From the Internet, I learned it was the last Maserati to be designed by Ercole Spada, a veteran designer from Carrozzeria. As chief designer and stylist, he wanted a pure performance car and chose a fiberglass body. Equipped with a 325 horsepower engine and ZF 5-speed transmission, it was a hit as it debuted at the Torino Auto Show around 1972. It was later found to be a great handling vehicle during testing at the Monza Race Track. Not too long after this, the Rivolta family sold their interest in the company. The project died without the Varedo ever being introduced as a production model.

Too bad! It would have been such a great car to drive.

4 Architecture – and – 40 Shot in HDR

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2441 So. Side of Hs - 2 Prch+

At the Manatee Village Historical Park there is a prime example of a house built in the “Cracker Gothic” style of architecture. Originally built and owned by the Stephens family, who lived in Hardee County, it was constructed of pine timber and heart pine blocks that were cut on the homestead. A fireplace supplied heating for the family. By raising the house about 2 1/2 feet, air circulated from under the house into the interior through cracks in the floor. Porches on three sides of the house cooled the breezes as they entered the house. A high-ceiling, central front hallway (called the “dog trot”) channeled the cooled air through the house. The pitcher pump on the back porch supplied water for the occupants.

This type of house was typical of a rural Florida home between the 1870′s and WWI.

2420 Frnt Entrnc+
All of these pictures were taken in HDR.

Front entrance looking into the long “dog trot” hall.

2429 No.Porch+

North porch of Stephens’ house.

2440 Front Porch+

Front porch is shown complete with rocking chair and swing. The bunting seen on front porch is part of a Halloween party the sponsoring group was having.


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25 Juxtaposition

794 Hooded Lapwings-2

What strange-looking birds these are — the Hooded Lapwings. They reside at the Lowry Park Zoo and were quite compliant about having their picture taken. It seemed as though they were presenting the front and rear views! At first, I could not find their identifications on any accompanying signs and so I called the Aviary at the Lowry Park Zoo. After supplying them with the photo, they promptly replied with the name of the birds.

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