The Charles Phoenix Test Kitchen Puttin' the Kitsch in Kitchen!
Eye-popping edible party centerpieces and potluck pleasers made with legendary American brand name products. These festive original recipes reflect the retro sensibility Charles is famous for. Don’t just eat your food, have fun with it too! And serve it up with a great big helping of American pride!
Be prepared for your Disneyland loving spirit to soar when the Ambassador of Americana takes you to the granddaddy of all theme parks when it was new.
With his spectacular collection of “found” mid-century era Kodachrome images, unbridled enthusiasm and keen eye for detail, Charles shares the early days of Main Street USA, Adventureland, Fantasyland, Frontierland and Tomorrowland.
See long-gone attractions including the Phantom Boats, Flying Saucers, Indian Village, People Mover, House of the Future and Carousel of Progress and the original Tomorrowland – promoted as “The World of 1986,” and the all-new Tomorrowland in 1967.
Your imagination will be inspired and your spirit will soar !!! …
Prepare for your national pride to swell when Ambassador of Americana, Charles Phoenix, super charges the classic living room slide show into a laugh-out-loud, celebration of mid-century futurism ala vintage Kodachome slides and retro road trip adventure discoveries.
With keen expertise, unbridled enthusiasm and sharp eye for oddball detail, Charles launches us into the super spellbinding stratosphere of out-of-this world suburban style, extreme architecture, car culture, tourist traps, theme parks, and space age other relics – then and now.
Sit back and enjoy the fabulous flight as we time travel to Charles’ fun-filled, action packed, crazy kaleidoscope of peppy pop culture – all in glorious Kodachrome COLOR!
… Your imagination will be inspired and your spirit will soar !!! …
Be prepared your for your national pride to swell when the Ambassador of Americana, Charles Phoenix, supercharges the classic living room slide show into a laugh-out-loud celebration of spectacular mid-century car culture, space age style, landmark attractions, festive fashions, outrageous architecture, theme parks, and much, much more.
With his keen expertise, unbridled enthusiasm, and eagle eye for oddball detail, Charles presents a crazy kaleidoscope of his “found” vintage Kodachrome slides, hi-octane road trip discoveries, eye-popping test kitchen creations and “best of guide” to local attractions, past and present.
Don’t miss this fun-filled, action packed, extravaganza of great American pop culture all in glorious COLOR !!!
Mid-Century Mod Architectural Drive-by Excursion Extravaganza
OCTOBER 21, 2016
OCTOBER 22, 2016
OCTOBER 23, 2016
Palm Springs Parking Lot
350 S. Palm Canyon Drive
Experience Palm Springs with the Ambassador of Americana! Humorist and tour guide extraordinaire, Charles Phoenix, will lead you on an entertaining adventure atop a double-decker, open-air bus.
With his unbridled enthusiasm, design expertise, and keen eye for oddball detail, Charles’ spirited tour highlights exterior views of dozens of spectacular Midcentury Modern estates and homes, commercial and civic buildings, famous neighborhoods and other treasures that have made Palm Springs world famous.
Peer over the walls and hedges of landmark homes and hotels in legendary neighborhoods, including Vista Las Palmas, the Movie Colony, Twin Palms and more. Marvel at Elvis’ “House of Tomorrow” honeymoon hideaway and the famed “Twin Palms” home of Frank Sinatra.
Charles also shares his favorite local restaurants, resorts, bars, boutiques and other not to be missed local attractions in Palm Springs.
The tour concludes on foot at the Village Green, a historic enclave where Charles guides you inside historical and cultural museums, followed by everyone’s favorite local treat, a date shake.
Museum admissions and date shake included in the tour price. Note: The final stop at the Village Green concludes the bus portion of the tour. The tour’s original starting point is 1½ blocks south.
Come prepared for lots of SUN, SUN and more SUN. All seats are on the upper deck of the bus and EXPOSED to the elements. Sunscreen and hats and or jackets are recommended. Please plan accordingly.
One “comfort stop” will be made mid-tour.
Please check in for the tour at least 15 minutes prior to departure
All tickets are sold for upper deck
Wheelchair accessibility is on the lower level only.
Free parking is available on the street or at the covered parking structure on the corner of W. Baristo Road/S. Indian Canyon Drive.
This tour begins at 11am sharp, outside the main front entrance of Union Station, and ends at 5PM, also at Union Station
“Rediscover Downtown Los Angeles as I have” says your tour guide Charles Phoenix, “It’s just like a theme park!” Experience the charm of MAIN STREET USA, exotica of ADVENTURELAND, wilderness of FRONTIERLAND, magic of FANTASYLAND, and future of TOMORROWLAND all in the heart and soul of the city!
This experience includes these legendary L.A. landmarks and so much more!
Union Station, the last grand train station built in the USA.
Ride on the Gold Line “Monorail” to exotic and colorful Chinatown.
Olvera Street landmarks and flavor; including a stop for Taquitos at Cileto Lindo, my treat!
Clifton’s Cafeteria, for a “no host” lunch and tour of the newly reopened and reimagined iconic eatery extravaganza.
Iconic 1894 Bradbury Building
Grand Central Market walk-thru to the Angel Flight stairs to the futuristic Water Garden and past the Broad Museum of Art on our way to the Walt Disney Concert Hall.
Carroll Avenue for a stroll through the largest concentration of Victorian houses in Southern California.
Bob Baker’s Marionette Puppet Theater for a classic puppet show performance followed by cake and ice cream served in the party room and much, much more!
PLEASE NOTE: Tour tickets are good for this date only. Lunch at CLIFTONS is *no-host. Museum, show tickets, snacks, and transportation are all included in the ticket price. Itinerary may change without notice. This tour happens rain or shine. Wear comfortable walking shoes and PLEASE BE ON TIME!
Everybody loves it when a cow jumps over the moon. But we love it even more when it’s a neon cow jumping over a neon moon perched high-in-the-sky on an erector set platform on the roof of a ranch-style roadside restaurant. Looks like she might even be a tail wagger! I’m sure the ‘59 Chrysler, ’55 Mercury, ’57 Chevy and Ford pickup are enjoying the view from the front row.
According to the long and narrow signage, hamburgers, hot dogs, steaks and fried chicken may be on the menu here, but milk is definitely the main course. It’s all-you-can-drink for 10 cents. If you really like leche you can enter their famous “Who-can-drink-the-most” contest. Win or lose, don’t forget to smell your way back to the pasture to meet and marvel at the milk makers. Cows and restaurants go so well together!
The Milk Farm originated in 1928. In 1986 it closed after, according to the legend, the wind huffed and puffed and blew a big ‘ol hole in the roof. In 2000, what was left of the building was dismantled and put into storage with hopes that someday the Milk Farm would be resurrected.
Today, only the luna hoppin’ Holstein still stands on the property where it serves as an unofficial, yet beloved local landmark.
If the day ever comes when the Milk Farm moos again, I’ll be the first one in line for the milk-drinking contest. Unless your lactose intolerant, or even if you are, I hope you can be there when they plug in the neon cow so we can all be over the moon when she jumps the neon moon once again!
Here’s to the cow, the milk, the Milk Farm and YOU!
A gray-suited man is casually perched on the side steps of San Francisco’s iconic ride as it travels Nob Hill. Before him a ’60 Plymouth taxi follows the dovelike flight of a ’60 Ford Starliner as it blurs into a turn. Behind him, perspective plays games as the cable car heads up that oh-so fashionable hill past a little red side-mounted sign on which Fairmount Hotel Tonga Room is written in neon. It marks the entrance to San Francisco’s most deluxe and enduring tiki bar and restaurant.
Tucked away deep inside the famous Fairmont Hotel, the Tonga Room is the city’s kitschiest tourist attraction. The centerpiece and crowning touch is the pool where, to this day, the live band plays floating on a little stage. And if that’s not exotic enough for you, it fake rains every 20 minutes. And who doesn’t love fake rain while drinking and dining!
So if you are in mood for a Mai Tai and puu-puu platter this is the absolute perfect place for you and your tribe to belly up to the tiki bar and unleash a primal scream of pure joy. Rice-a-Roni isn’t the only San Francisco treat. So is the legendary Tonga Room.
BUT…BIG BUT… whatever you do…don’t dawdle get there ASAP. Developers have been threatening to demo the Tonga Room to build a mondo condo tower for years.
Speaking of SF, I’m deeee-lighted to be debuting my RETRO SLIDE SHOW there, a deep-fried and delicious live comedy performance celebrating classic and kitschy mid-century American life and style…tourist traps theme parks, space age suburbia, car culture and much much more!
Thursday night, April 14th, 8 p.m. at the Roxie Theater.
BUY TICKETS Here’s to San Francisco, the Tonga Room and YOU!
March 26, 2011
Los Angeles, CA
P.S. You are cordially invited to join me on Facebook for more Americana goodness!
Clotheslines and power lines pattern an overcast sky. A trio of gents poses with a ferocious lion, fortune teller, blue-eyed clown and barefoot monkey. They are in the backyard of a classic Van Nuys track home. One of the men, I don't know which one, owns a party store on Van Nuys Blvd. He rents these standees out. Each is a precious one-of-a-kind work of art as you can see...
Going through other people's old slides I've seen a lot of cakes but this one is unexplainable. Yellow, orange, Chinese red, avocado green and black lumps of mystery matter on top of tan frosting. It's ANOTHER WEIRD CAKE - and the SLIDE-OF-THE-WEEK. Cake is special. It would be unfathomable to celebrate a wedding, anniversary or birthday without one.
The 1960 Plymouth Fury is one of the most spectacular cars of the space age! First of all, the name, FURY! It's the only car ever named for violent anger or rage. How weird is that? That pointy front fender; the shape of the wheel wells and yes, just in case you didn't notice, those ravishing rooster tail fins! Cock-a-doodle-doo!