Posts Tagged With: Travel Channel

Sweet Home Rocks! Part I – Petrified Wood

Petrified Wood, Holleywood Ranch, Sweet Home, Oregon

Petrified Wood at Holleywood Ranch

The Sweet Home, Oregon area is known for Holley Blue and other agates. But did you know you can also dig petrified wood and gather pyrite? Now I know some people say, “Pyrite?! Who wants Fool’s Gold?” Well, this is very pretty, nicely shaped Fool’s Gold.

Jerry and Jessica ready to dig petrified wood, Holleywood Ranch, Sweet Home, Oregon

Jerry and Jessica ready to dig

On this day, my little brother, Jerry, his wife Marilyn, and daughter Jessica, headed up to Sweet Home to check it out. We first arrived at Holleywood Ranch just outside of town, to dig for the petrified wood. We saw the sign showing we were at the right place, but no one was in sight. It turns out you should always phone ahead because the owners live on a hill behind the field where the digging takes place, and so they aren’t always in the field. There is a white house next to the fields but that is rental property, so please don’t bother the renters.

Petrified Wood Field, Holleywood Ranch, Sweet Home, Oregon

Petrified Wood Field

We met up with owner Brad Newport, and he showed us the wagons and probing tools and told us to head on out to see what we could find. The top of the ground was literally littered with pieces of petrified wood. It’s tempting to reach down and pick up several pieces but even more tempting to see what we could dig up for ourselves. We saw several trenches where other people had dug so we checked them out and found several pieces nice enough to keep. Most pieces were rather small, but there were some pieces in the field that were simply too big to pick up!

Jessica standing on large piece of petrified wood, Sweet Home, Oregon

Jessica standing on large piece of petrified wood

After choosing several pieces we headed back to the gate where there was water available to clean our finds and decide which ones to keep. The details really show up when the rocks are wet! Then we took them up to Brad’s house to pay for our keepers.

Petrified Wood from Holleywood Ranch, Sweet Home, Oregon

Petrified Wood from Holleywood Ranch!

When we walked into his shop, we were enthralled! Petrified wood everywhere! Limb casts, huge pieces, colorful pieces – it was a rockhounder’s heaven. We had some time to talk to Brad, an extremely pleasant gentleman, and he told us how he bought the property not knowing the petrified wood was on it. And when he did find out, he nearly wore himself out digging every day after work. I could completely understand, I would have done the same thing!

Brad Newport, Owner of Holleywood Ranch, Sweet  Home, Oregon

Brad Newport, Owner of Holleywood Ranch

He didn’t plan to open his property to the public until the Travel Channel Cash and Treasures show called him and wanted to visit. One of their requirements is that the property be opened to the public so he decided to try it. He had a great time telling us the story of the filming of the show, and some of the funny highlights. Holleywood Ranch has also been featured on Grant’s Getaways!

Holleywood Ranch is open for digging every day (weather permitting), just make sure to call ahead to 541-401-0899 or 541-409-6047. The digging is easy, the ground is soft and flat so no hiking, just a simple walk out into the field. You only pay $1.50 per pound for the pieces you choose to keep.

 

More gorgeous petrified wood! Holleywood Ranch, Sweet Home, Oregon

More gorgeous petrified wood!

You can find Holleywood Ranch online at http://holleywoodranch.com/

The link to the episode on Cash and Treasures, as well as Grant’s Getaways can be found here: http://holleywoodranch.com/claim-to-fame/

Come back next week to find out more about how Sweet Home Rocks! Part II – Pyrite.

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Categories: Oregon, Outdoors, Roadside Attraction, Rockhounding/Gold Panning | Tags: , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Has Anyone Seen My Taste Buds? Great Balls of Fire at Salvador Molly’s!

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Adam from Man vs. Food – Pic on wall

1-IMG_1613On David’s 50th birthday we decided to head to Portland, Oregon to celebrate. While waiting for his mom, Sue, to come down to join us, we were watching Man vs. Food on the Travel Channel. The host, Adam, was at Salvador Molly’s in Portland taking the Great Balls of Fire Challenge. He was crying – that’s a signal to people who like spicy food that it’s an enjoyable experience. The challenge involves eating 5 habanero chile cheese fritters covered in habanero sauce. So that’s where we decided to go for the birthday dinner.

The other thing that intrigued us about this restaurant is the variety of foods provided. Dishes are offered from Jamaica, New Orleans, Hawaii, Ethiopia, and Thailand. David was very excited for the variety.

Getting there is a bit of a challenge if you aren’t familiar with the area and even though David knows Portland pretty well, we were glad I had my iPhone with GPS and Siri. It’s easy to pass the restaurant. It is just the end part of a very small strip mall. After we went in, we immediately order just the three Great Balls of Fire. The challenge requires a person to eat five of them. Even my spice-loving guys thought that might be a bit much. When they came, first David tried one, then Josh kinda licked at his. After a few seconds, David’s eyes started watering and he was sputtering a little. Josh had finally eaten his in one whole bite and started regretting it. I have to admit Sue ate half of one and just said it was very spicy but no crying from her. She’s no wimp!

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Great Balls of Fire!

Of course, I just watched and recorded their reactions on my phone. I’m no fool plus I don’t like much of anything. I asked the waiter, “What do you have for people who don’t like anything?” and he looked at me kinda funny. Sue said, “She’s not kidding, she doesn’t like anything.” So I ordered pulled-pork sliders with the BBQ sauce on the side. When it came, I just sniffed the BBQ sauce and my eyes started watering. I said to the waiter, “I know this is probably bad to ask here, but do you have just plain ‘ol ketchup?” They did.

David and Josh ordered Jambalaya. When it came, they took a few bites and David said, “I can’t taste anything yet.” But after a few more minutes, it finally went away, and he said the food was delicious. At one point we saw a baby outside on the deck waving his arms around. David said he must have tasted the Great Balls of Fire and was waving his arms, crying, and asking if anyone had seen his taste buds that had ran off down the street.

1-IMG_1628Fast forward a few months. We told my daughter, Brandy, and her fiancé, Jason, about Salvador Molly’s and she loves spicy food and he likes some of it, so they wanted to try it. This time we ordered five Great Balls of Fire, expecting everyone (except me, of course) to eat one. David and Jason each ate one. Brandy ate ½ of one, Josh ate the other half. After about a minute Brandy’s eyes started watering, then she started feeling hot all over, then her sinuses cleared. Jason did pretty good for a guy who doesn’t like very spicy things. He was disgusted though when he took a drink of his beer and said, “Now I can’t taste my Corona!” We laughed and told him that would pass.

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Our meals came and everyone was pleased with their meals which were flavorful and spiced just right. Or maybe they just seemed that way in comparison to the Great Balls of Fire. This time I ordered the Chickidee Do Dah (chicken breast with mashed potatoes and carrots) off the kids menu. Yes, I most certainly am a wienie – that’s about as brave as I get.

Salvador Molly’s is a small restaurant, but has interesting, vibrant décor from around the world. The service is excellent and the ambiance is fun. Most of all, it’s just entertaining to watch other people eat the Great Balls of Fire!

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Getting there: Located at 1523 SW Sunset Blvd., Portland, OR, 97239. Rather than give directions, if you don’t know the area, I recommend using your GPS. It is very confusing to get to.

Categories: Food, Wine, Cider, Oregon | Tags: , , , , , , | 2 Comments

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