Tuesday, June 29, 2021

Armchair Travelogue: Follow the Yellow Brick Road in the Wonderful Wizard of Oz Outdoor Exhibit in Holland, Michigan

The characters in the Wizard of Oz book in front of the library in Holland, Michigan
#armchairtravel #travel #Hollandmichigan

Hello and welcome! The fifth Wednesday of the month...Some time I must google how often a fifth Wednesday occurs in a year. Anyway, since it's a special Wednesday because it's #5, I am sharing a blog post from the archives that popped up serendipitously. Yes, the 5th Wednesday is Serendipity according to my new schedule for the blog posts.
Posting Schedule for the Focused on Story Blog.

This was one of my most popular posts on the blog, so I thought it would be a good one to choose for you. I hope you are getting out a lot more now that the COVID restrictions are gone (in Michigan anyway.) 

Last year we were tired of "staying-in", so we broke out and took a drive with my daughter, Sara, and family on Memorial Day which turned out to be my birthday this year. So we had two great reasons to head out to Holland, Michigan, about one hour from our home.

Lighthouse at Holland

Sara wanted to see the famous tulips albeit late in the season. Ben wanted to look at Jeeps. Read no further if you are looking forward to a tour of the car dealerships featuring Jeeps. 

The characters in the Wizard of Oz along the yellow brick road in front of the Herrick Library.

Why would the city of Holland feature the beloved story, The Wizard of Oz, in their downtown area? Because the author of the book, L. Frank Baum, spent summers along the shores of Lake Macatawa in Holland. I wish I could tell you all about him and how some of the folks in his neighborhood can be seen as the characters in the book! I'll save that for another day because we're here to tour through this amazing exhibit.  It's FREE and Open 24 hours every day.

The 10' x12' open book is made of thousands of annuals a living "floral mosaic. 

I snapped this photo in September 2017 when we visited. On Memorial Day 2020, the book had not been moved from its winter home in the Holland City greenhouse.

Follow the yellow brick road across the road kitty-corner from this display to the amazing bronze sculptures of the cherished characters in the book. Interaction with the characters is encouraged. In fact, one cannot help but pet the lion, hug the scarecrow and tin man, and adore sweet Dorothy and her darling dog.

Sculptor Nick Christenson and his crew at Brodin Studios have made an outstanding exhibit that will make visitors smile and remember their experiences when reading the Wizard of Oz or seeing the movie based on the book.

I hope you will someday be able to visit when you're in the West Michigan area.
This little host greets you as you walk across the street from the park.

See what I mean? You can't resist the scarecrow!

The perfect word to describe Dorothy is precious. So is her lovable companion. 
Sara and I wanted to climb on the lion, but the hot sun made the bronze sculpture very very hot. I bet little kids wouldn't care. His broad back invites you to sit!

The tin man wins for the best grin.

Now the Fighting Tree was scary, just as in the book. But I ended up laughing.
Sunset over Lake Michigan
The photo was taken on the shore of Lake Michigan,
 one of the best places to view a breathtaking sunset.


Click here for my blog post about more places to visit in Holland, Michigan.

Deadly Undertaking by J.Q. Rose
Cozy mystery
A handsome detective, a shadow man, 
and a murder victim kill Lauren’s plan for a simple life.

Buy Links: Deadly Undertaking is available at your favorite digital bookseller.

Universal Link for Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Apple, etc.


Have you visited this exhibit? Have you read the book or watched the movie, The Wizard of Oz? Please leave a comment below. 


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Natalie Aguirre said...

I've never visited Holland though I've lived in Michigan my whole life. I want to follow the yellow brick road.

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Neat feature at the library. Glad you took a birthday trip and saw it.
I think there are four fifth Wednesdays in a year.

Helena Fairfax said...

Hi JQ, I remember seeing that stunning mosaic. It's such a clever idea and so wonderfully put together. The Wizard of Oz is one of my favourite films. I would love to visit the Yellow Brick Road!

Marsha said...

Hey, J. Q. I remember this post from last year. What a fun place to go. I've shared. :)

J.Q. Rose said...

You'll love it, Natalie. The downtown is charming and water water everywhere with beaches on Lake Michigan and Lake Macatawa. I love Holland State Park and the lighthouse. Okay. I could go on and on. I'll meet you there!!

J.Q. Rose said...

Only four fifth Wednesdays? That's okay, I'll try and make my Serendipity Wednesdays as special as fifth Wednesdays!

J.Q. Rose said...

Come on over and we'll go. Only an hour away on Interstate. No mountains or moors to cross though.!!

J.Q. Rose said...

Thanks for sharing Marsha. It was a lot of fun.

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