Sunday, October 31, 2010

The Pumpkin House

Named by the locals, The Pumpkin House of Kenova, West Virginia boasts over 3,000 hand carved pumpkins each October. 
(Photo Credit: Mark Webb/The Herald Dispatch)

What began as a fun, humble activity has in recent years grown into a nationally known event. In it's 30th year, displayed at a historical, 1891 Victorian Home, owned by Ric Griffith (the town's mayor) the house becomes transformed each Halloween season into The Pumpkin House
Griffith begins preparing in September by ordering pumpkins and then as the time grows closer volunteers are gathered for 6 days of carving and gutting. On average 500 pumpkins are completed each day leading up to show time- Halloween! Pumpkin carvings range from Presidents, animals, sports teams to religious symbols... A little bit of everything!
To complete the look of the pumpkin house, a choreographed musical number is completed with a wall of pumpkins. The music featuring the theme from Pirates of the Caribbean. 
(Photo Credit: Mark Webb/The Herald Dispatch)

So if you missed it this year, I'm sure you can catch it next year! The Pumpkin House is located at 748 Beech Street, Kenova, West Virginia.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The Roosevelt Hotel

On a recent trip to Los Angeles, California, I had the pleasure of staying at the Hotel Roosevelt. The Hotel Roosevelt is located in downtown Hollywood and is within walking distance to many well known attractions such as the Kodak Theater, Walk of Fame and the Chinese Theater.
The Hotel Roosevelt has long been a hollywood haunt. Everyone from movie stars such as Marilyn Monroe to music legends such as Blondie have stayed there. The hotel was also the location of the very first Academy Awards Presentation. Most recently the hotel has been seen as the backdrop on MTV's The Hills. The pool and outdoor bar area is a mecca for celebrities to hang out and be seen.

During my stay, I found the front desk staff friendly, welcoming and helpful. The valet was also friendly and even suggested great places to dine at and spot celebrities. However, wait time for the vehicle was sometimes long, so call ahead! That way the car is ready and waiting.

As for the actual room, we had a Deluxe room 2 double beds which was roughly 400 square feet. The room was clean, included a mini fridge with a mini bar and snacks, had a flat screen tv and came with C&O Bigalow bath products for the bathroom. The beds were comfortable and the decor was brown and white with a sepia tone celebrity photograph as the wall decor.
All in all, I'd say if you were looking for a hotel in Hollywood that's close to all the attractions and even has it's own history then the Hotel Roosevelt is the choice for you!

Monday, October 25, 2010


One of my favorite places to visit every time I'm in Orlando, Florida is Gatorland.
I first went to Gatorland in the early 1990's and fell in love with the place. On my most recent trip in August I had the pleasure of adding to my Gatorland memories.

If you've never been to Gatorland then you're in for a unique experience! As soon as you walk through the gates you become surrounded by alligators, crocodiles turtles and other wildlife.
The reptiles are so close to you but far enough away for safety. Besides being able to walk around the grounds viewing the reptiles they also have a feeding show, a gator wrestling show and opportunities for the general public to feed them.
As I mentioned before, Gatorland has other wildlife animals on their property. Beautiful birds are spread out all over their property and have no problem being close to people. They're a great bonus to the alligators. The scenery is also wonderful.
Not only was Gatorland a fun place to spend the day, it was filled with friendly and helpful employees that made this day of travel a memorable one. Not traveling with family or friends? Who cares... you can have a great time here alone!

Gatorland is open daily 9:00am-5:00pm and is located on Highway 441 just North of Orlando.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

A Welcome Note

Hello and Welcome! 
I'm Jennifer Marie Olivia (JMO) and I'll be your guide here on JMO Travels. I've been traveling around the world since I was a child and nothing has ever made me happier. There's just something about being out on the road, visiting new cities and exploring new attractions that's always brought a smile to my face. What else can I say, I love it! 

During all my years of travel, I've visited some great attractions, stayed at some fancy hotels, shopped at chic stores and discovered delicious foods and often at times it was because I went off the beaten path. Yes, there's some great tourist locations everywhere, but sometimes the most special places are only found by word of mouth. Here you'll hear about some of those places.

Along with going of the beaten path in my travels, I've learned that many people hate to travel alone. Yet, they all had one thing in common, they still wanted to travel. I'm here to tell you that you can travel independently. Due to my schedule a lot of my travels have happened when I was alone. I'm living proof that you can be safe, have fun and get to explore major cities. Male or female, in a group or individually travel is for everyone. 
Here at JMO Travels, I will be sharing all of my globe trotting ways! Expect to see tons of travel tips ranging from restaurants, attractions, shops, hotels and much more! You'll also be seeing reviews, suggestions and tips on how to make traveling cheaper, simpler and stress free. I hope you'll stick around and come back. 

Till the next travels,