Who doesn't love a fountain? This little secret hidden fountain I noticed at the back of a shop on Venice Ave. I was admiring the clothes and followed the unmistakable sound of water. Through an open door I was surprised to see this perfect little hidden garden and was charmed. The delicate tinkling sound of water and watching the droplets dance is such a relaxing little pause in our lives.
There are some famous fountains in the world. For example, even if you haven't seen them in person, you have probably seen photos or a video of the dancing fountains in front of the Bellagio Hotel in Las Vegas. Or if you are a fan of old movies, I'm sure you are familiar with the famous Trevi Fountain in Rome which was the theme of the film, " Three Coins in the Fountain" (it won the Academy Awain in 1954).
The fountains here in Venice are not quite that famous. But they are charming just the same. One of the first that we noticed before we actually moved here. We were just visiting when we saw the Dolphin Fountain sitting across from the Venice Beach in Graser Park.
The greek-inspired tile lining the water basin and the style of the sculpture itself strikes me as being very Mediterranean which is perfectly in keeping with the original plan for this town. The fountain is agreeably round and circled by benches, perfect for a little rest during a long walk or bike ride.
The second fountain that we stumbled across sits in Centennial Park. Centennial Park is bordered on one side by one of the most important streets in all of Venice Island, which is Venice Avenue. The Park is a busy place as it has the primary parking lot for most Venice Avenue shops and restaurants but it also is an actual park with a lovely gazebo, a six-sided events board and a very nice public restroom. Many outside musical events are held in this park. There was a terrific car show over the summer there. And year round there is a basin-less fountain. It is a rare day that there aren't small children (and sometimes not so small children) frolicking in that water.
I found the next fountain shortly after we moved into the house while walking around the island, determined to learn to navigate our new town. It was quite hot and humid and I had turned myself around so completely that I had no idea which way took me back home. Frustrated, hot and rather annoyed with myself, I paused for a moment, certain that I was hearing water. I followed the sound a very short way and found myself in a tiny but perfect little park with shade trees, fragrant flowers, benches and the prettiest little fountain. I rested a short while at the Ponce De Leon Park fountain before setting out again and of course eventually found my way back home. Because I have moved so much in my life, I long ago realized that the best way to find your way around a new town is to just go ahead and get lost. Works every time.
The MIchael Biehl Park is a beautiful place just before the North Bridge. It sits alongside the Venice Theatre behind stucco walls and quietly awaits visitors. Surprisingly poorly attended, it is spacious, with shaded benches, flowering shrubs, trees, a very large fountain and a beguiling mural. I'm not sure you noticed in the photo, but all along the rim of the water basin are little sculpted bronze starfish. It's those little details that just charm the socks off me. I have no idea why each time I am there, I am there alone. It's fine with my by the way. It's like having my own personal park. But it's also a shame. Something that lovely should be seen and appreciated.
I'm quite certain that as time goes on, I will discover yet more fountains here. Well actually I nearly left out two, didn't I? There are a lot of parks here on Venice Island, each with it's own unique distinctions. Some have playground equipment, some have sports arenas of one sort of another, one is specific to dogs, some have beach access, and a couple have historic signage. A few of them are just lovely, many tree-d, grassy areas, though some have sculptures and as I've noted here, some have beautiful cascading fountains. One thing I have noticed though, way too few of them have this sort of fountain.
But not one single park here on the Island has my very favourite fountain though, thankfully, Venice Avenue does, so I am saved. And if you come to visit, so you are.
Have a terrific weekend, my friends!
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.