Outside of Weatherford, east of town on 180, there's a wonderfully run down looking old place called the "Studebaker Farm". They apparently specialize in old Studebakers, and had several old girls parked out front.
I do love me some rusty old trucks....
We were pretty hungry after walking around Greenwood Cemetery all morning, so we stopped in at the Weatherford Downtown Cafe:
I had read good things about it, and I can definitely recommend that you get there early. We didn't have trouble finding a table at 11:30, but by noonish it was getting pretty packed with the after-church crowd. A+ Cafe food!! Service was good and the food delicious.
We didn't even have room for desert.
When we left the Cafe, we headed over to Mineral Wells, which is just 30 minutes of so to the west. We had passed through Mineral Wells in a hurry back in the winter and I wanted another opportunity to see the old Baker Hotel.
The beautiful old Baker Hotel opened its doors in 1929. Clark Gable, Ronald Regan, Lyndon Johnson, and Marlene Dietrich are just a few of the celebs that visited the Baker during it's heyday as a mineral water spa. By 1932, though, financial troubles began to plague the Baker and would continue to do so until it finally closed for good in 1972.
They don't let you go inside anymore, though there used to be official tours. If I were as reckless as I used to be, and single, I'd be in there in a heartbeat to have a look around. I love old wrecks like this. The Mrs. and I only bother to watch a handful of shows on TV anymore, one of which is Ghost Hunter's on A&E. I'll admit to hoping that a spectral, spooky face would appear at one of the windows, but it never did.
There are rumors of hauntings, and it certainly looks the part. You can find all sorts of info on the Baker online, including pictures of the inside from several years ago. I'm pretty certain that the old girl will continue to deteriorate with no hope of making a comeback. I don't see there being enough demand for her services to make a restoration possible. Likewise, I imagine that the cost of demolition and cleanup would far outweigh the value of the property.... not just a whole lot going on in Mineral Wells these days.
So, we'll have to see if she just gradually crumbles into the dust like the buildings in those "After Man" shows on Discovery.
I'll miss her when she's gone...
On the way back through Weatherford, we were please to find that a couple of the Antique shops off the square had opened for Sunday afternoon business. We spent an enjoyable couple of hours wandering around looking a stuff. Even bought a couple of small doo-dads that caught our eyes.
On the way back home, we stopped off at a roadside Malt Shop called, oddly enough, The Malt Shop. The fries and hotdog weren't that good, but the malt was great! They certainly seemed to be doing a good business, with 50's music playing through the intercom outside. This picture was taken around 3pm, and it got even more crowded as we left with the arrival of a large group of bikers.
The last picture opportunity was a group of heavy draft horses we spotted along side the road. I'm a huge fan of working horses, and seldom pass up a chance to photograph them, or just stop and stare. These are Gypsy Vanner horses, which is a breed that I had never heard of before my Wife brought them to my attention a couple of years ago.
I never thought I would have a chance to see one in person, much less several.
They were really friendly, and came right up to the fence for some scratchin'. A little TOO close at times :)