Butterworth Center and Deere Wiman House – Moline, Illinois

The Butterworth Center and Deere Wiman house at 817, 11th Avenue and 1105-8th Street, Moline is a must visit for Quad city residents to explore the history of the place. They were originally owned by the John Deere family but currently serve the community for architectural and historical education.

Deere-Wiman House

The Deere-Wiman house was built by the great John Deere for his youngest son Charles. It was designed by Chicago architect William Le Baron Jenny and the John Deere descendants lived there from 1872 to 1976. The house was renovated and currently offers a unique opportunity to compare the life style of then and now. 🙂

The house has Blue room, Rose room, Green room with rich upholstery, furniture and architecture. The dining hall has big paintings and tea pots. The paintings throughout the house are extraordinary and may take hours to enjoy. The piano hall, guest rooms, library and music room show case the original and renovated architecture.

Butterworth Center

The Butterworth Center, originally called as ‘Hillcrest’, was built in 1892 as a wedding gift for Katherine Deere and William Butterworth from her parents Charles and Mary Deere. Mrs. Butterworth was the grand daughter of John Deere. She was the first president of Deere and Company. She invented the steel plow in 1837.

The Center features rich architecure and paintings. The roof painting in the library is a master piece. The bi-level living room features a music room with grand piano and pipe organ of 26 ranks. These are the one of the foremost residential installations in the Midwest. The house was dedicated for community after the death of Mrs. Butterworth.

Community Service

The Center offer guided tours for school children. Several workshops, tours, summer camps, field trips for teachers and children are conducted every year. The Butterworth trust offers scholarships to outstanding students in the Moline School District. The center conducts different competitions where students can participate and show case their talent.

I liked the Blossoms on the Butterworth event today and enjoyed the tour apart from some free goodies. 🙂 The tent by the WQPT, the free picture, the 1800s games, and balloons were top attractions. The garden tour was pleasant and good for walking! The shows included juggling, Niabi Zoo show, youth bands among others. The car antique display was amazing to watch including the car that featured in Johnny Depp starred movie, ‘Public Enemies’. 🙂

You can reach them on (309) 743-2700 to schedule a guided tour or check the event calendar for a visit.

The Annual Quad City Air Show – Davenport, Iowa

The annual Quad City Air Show is a must watch for the locals. It features top class air planes and amazing feats by the pilots.

The jets and super sonics make a colorful patterns and arrangements in the air. The bomber aircrafts fire the bombs and demonstrate their capabilities. The multiple jet synchronization and the feats are superb.

The aeroplanes twist and drop at a ninety degree angle from top to bottom and bottom to top. the expertise and skill of the pilots is commendable. I wonder how the pilots risk their lives just for the entertainment of the people.

The air show team recreate the Pearl Harbor attack which took place in 1941. In addition, the show features the American Navy Blues Angles. The dedicated top performers entertain and honor the veterans and engage the audience.

Good music and commentary along with food and drinks make a perfect afternoon for kids as well as adults. It costs $15 per head or you can just sit by the green grass by the road side and watch the aero-show.

The air show is conducted annually at the Davenport Municipal airport on the last Sunday in June. It is located at 9010 Harrison Street, Davenport, IA 52806. You can call 563-285-7469 for more information.

Niabi Zoo – The Wild Fest

Niabi zoo in Coal Valley, Illinois is a great outing for children and adults. This Saturday along with the local sponsors Niabi Zoo conducted a ‘Wild Fest’ event. Businesses from Quad cities advertised apart from conducting games and offering cool coupons in the zoo today.

Animals

I got a chance to visit all the dear animals including:

  • Asian elephants – Very huge under a small shade
  • Australian kangaroo – Quietly resting
  • African Giraffes – I love the two baby ones with beautiful stripes. The female giraffe is cute and the male one enjoying getting wet in the water fountain. The giraffe bends its neck and legs to reach the grass on the ground, which is amazing to watch.
  • African Lions – Mustafa, the male lion is gorgeous and beautiful
  • American bald eagle – my son’s favorite
  • Reptiles – Anaconda, pythons and Texas snake which are scary to watch
  • American black Bear – With lots of apples and a swimming pool!!
  • Colorful fishes and turtles
  • Bobcat – Really big ones

There are many other birds and animals which I will see in detail next time when I visit.

Rides

We all took the train ride with a ringing bell. The carousel ride with animals seats was good. My son took the pony ride which I think is painful for the animals. The rides are affordable and I think they are under-priced for the benefit of the people.

The Wild fest today included many inflatable slides and play areas for children. The zoo installed water sprinklers and water fans everywhere to keep the visitors cool. 🙂

Overall, the zoo is worth visiting in the summer when all the animals are grazing around. It was sad to leave the zoo and I wish they had extended the summer hours.

The zoo has special events and free days for children and adults. You could host a birthday party or have breakfast with animals or enjoy a casual picnic or get together with friends. I could just sit and watch the lion whole day. 🙂

Build Credit History With The Public Savings Bank Secured Visa

For individuals with no credit or those who have experienced a negative credit event like divorce or foreclosure, establishing credit history can be a real challenge. Without proper credit, everything from a car loan to an apartment or even a job can be denied.

When faced with problem credit, many people rely on prepaid cards to manage their daily expenses. However, prepaid cards simply provide access to your own money, not credit from a lender. These cards do not report to credit bureaus and do not help re-establish credit history. People need to demonstrate on-time monthly payments on a credit card in order to rebuild that important credit history.

So how can someone who cannot get a credit card rebuild their credit?

The Public Savings Bank Secured Visa offers people with low credit or no credit the opportunity to re-establish their credit history and work towards improving their credit score. Individuals make a deposit into an FDIC-insured account that acts as a security deposit. They can then make purchases anywhere Visa is accepted or take cash advances up to the deposited credit line amount, currently between $300-$2000. Payments are reported to all three major credit bureaus (TransUnion, Experian and Equifax) so customers can begin to establish credit immediately.

The Public Savings Bank Secured Visa does not require a credit check or even a checking account to apply. Customers can fund their account via Western Union, ACH, wire transfer, check or money order. The card has no annual or monthly fees, and offers 0% APR for 6 months. Rush shipping is available so customers can begin using their card just days after funding their account.

Building good credit is critical at a time when credit is getting harder to obtain. This card allows the customer to build good credit while enjoying all the benefits of a Visa card at very favorable terms.

25 tips for a happy marriage

The New York post listed twenty five tips for a happy marriage. While I think only one best tip works, ‘Silence’. Enduring the partner’s good and bad requires a lot of patience and the only way to express self is remaining silent.

While exerting your wishes and wants on the partner, it is also important as how far are we prepared to receive the other person’s wants.

The priorities of both the members may vary, but the common goal must be peace and happiness. Enjoying the small moments, while working for the bigger goals is essential to keep the marriage going.

Silence in most of the tense and unpleasant situations avoids conflict and ugly fights in front of other family members. It is better to resolve the issues in private. Or, giving some time to let the matter settle down may help.

Finally, it is not him versus her but it is the overall happiness of the family that is most important consideration in marriage. Regardless of who the bread winner is or who the intelligent person is, all the feelings and needs of the members must be prioritized before establishing individual’s interest.

Father’s Day 2010

Father’s day is celebrated worldwide to honor fathers and their significance in the upbringing of a child. It is the 100th celebration this year, started by a women to appreciate fathers!

Fathers play a very important role in the society. They have a great influence on children. The rules of the house, education, finances and all important aspects are decided by father. Though they play a minimal role in the initial upbringing of a child, fathers do influence and take key decisions on behalf of a child and family. Some families do have single fathers raising children.

Father’s day is celebrated on different dates in different countries. In the USA, it is the third Sunday of June every year. Father’s day celebrations include giving gifts and small cards for the father.

While father’s day is being criticized by single mothers, I think men don’t need any special attention and celebration. They are usually self-centered and contented anyways. 🙂

It is unknown how far they will appreciate the surprises on fathers day or rather enjoy being left alone watching game shows.

Movie Review – Vedam

Vedam, 2010 is directed by ‘Gamyam’ director Radha Krishna (Krishh). It is multi-starrer movie with multiple stories running simultaneously.

Social Problems, Again

The director projects the following social problems with different characters:

  • Child labor and Poverty – Junior artists
  • Prostitution – Anushka
  • Bureaucracy and Bribery – Police department
  • Unemployment and False life – Allu Arjun
  • Ambitious and selfish youth – Manchu Manoj
  • Casteism and Terrorism – Manoj Bajpai

Apart from these social problems, the other problems shown include kidney-selling in hospitals, abuse of youth by cultural organizations, confused youth, slum life, chain snatching, hand loom weavers and what not.

The Cast

All the actors did complete judgement to their roles. The comedy and dances are apt and according to the situations. The main heroes Allu Arjun and Manchu Manoj have a good opportunity in this movie to showcase their acting skills despite their latest flops. Manoj Bajpai’s plays a crucial role in the movie and has done it well.

Anushka’s performance is commendable and reminds Kareena Kapoor in ‘Chameli’. New heroines Siya Gautham, Lekha Washington and Deeksha Seth (Femina Miss India 2009 No. 4) are cute enough and do judgement to their roles as well. Comedy by Vadivelu, Brahmanandam and others is good and entertaining.

The Confusion

The movie starts with a funny note but progresses with heavy twists and turns in all the simultaneous stories. The plot and screenplay is good though. Your mood may change from jovial to sentimental to frustration and helplessness then confused and ultimately unsure of what is happening around. 🙂

In the climax both the young heroes lose their lives in the process of saving people, which is wierd. The  movie  may win an award but you will leave heavy-hearted. If you are looking for a jolly and happy movie, this movie is not suggestible. 🙂

Weekend Getaways in Quad Cities – Metropolis, Illinois: The Superman City

Starting June 10th to June 13th, Metropolis Illinois is be celebrating the 32nd annual Superman celebrations. Metropolis is a small city in Southernmost Illinois on the shore of the great Ohio river. While Metropolis is famous in American history for the civil war, it is also popular as the home of Superman!


Superman

Superman is a fictional super hero character of DC Comics. The character was created by Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster in 1932. The character appeared in comic books, radio and television programs, newspapers, movies and video games. Also known as ‘The Man of Steel’, Superman is popular among public and children.

Though Superman character was born in Smallville he became popular when he came to fictional city Metropolis. While the exact connection between the fictional Metropolis and the real Metropolis is not yet known, the city celebrates ‘Superman’ every year. 🙂

Attractions

Metropolis is fifteen miles away from Paducah, Kentucky. It has a 15 foot statue of Superman at the Masaac county courthouse. The statue is located just five miles of the US 45 highway. Across the street, the Superman Museum, which is a house to the largest collection of Superman memorabilia.

The other attractions in the area:

You can visit the city in between a long journey or during the annual Superman celebrations!

Superman Celebrations


Superman Celebrations attract hundreds of people from across the United States and the world. Visitors across the country participate in the celebrations to keep up the Superman spirit.

The celebration organizes multiple events including concerts, car races, carnival, games, contests, shows, celebrity autographs, and costume contest. The largest people dressed up as Superman gather together in the costume contest!

You can enjoy the trip to Southernmost Illinois as well as participate in the Superman celebrations when you visit Metropolis. 🙂

Steve Jobs Announces Apple iPhone 4 – Multitasking Ahoy!

Steve Jobs announced Apple iPhone 4 to be available from June 24th. The much awaited iPhone 4 has promises for the frustrated previous iPhone users. iPhone 3GS was the latest in the series though it has some limitations. Most users opted for jail breaking rather than getting stuck with the limited features of iPhone 3GS.

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Apple iPhone 4

iPhone 4 features and design include retina display, A4 processor, built-in three-axis-gyroscope, LED Camera, multitasking (much needed), HD Video recording and editing and so on. It has enabled video calling ‘Face time’ apart from the existing shared features in iPhone 3GS. When you compare the two models, the latest one is obviously better with increased options and promises.

iPhone 4 is going to have multiple new applications including Netflix. Let’s hope the promises are kept up and all the features work properly. 🙂

AT&T or Verizon

Apple has contracts wit AT&T until 2010. In today’s announcement, everybody expected Steve Jobs to mention Verizon as the next service provider. But no such announcement is made leaving the iPhone users to wonder about what is going to happen next?

You can pre-order your iPhone 4 from June 15th onwards which will be available from June 23rd. Let us hope that it wins the smart phone race. 🙂

The Big Oil Spill – Is it the Beginning of the End of the World?

From British Petroleum, to Beyond Petroleum and Now, the Biggest Polluter, BP has proved to be a largest disaster on the face of earth. Is it the beginning of the end of the world or the end of life itself? The big oil spill and the consequences leave us shocked with nothing anyone can do.

Drill, Baby, Drill

Offshore drilling is not allowed in most of the coastal areas. According to the Minerals Management Service, US coasts have billions of oil barrels and trillions of gas sources along the coasts of Atlantic, Pacific and Gulf of Mexico. Seventy per cent of oil is found under water, where it is most expensive to drill.

The Republicans used the ‘Drill, Baby, Drill’ slogan as part of their support for extensive drilling for additional sources of energy. The corruptive authorities and government policies led to large drilling contracts throughout the USA coastline. British Petroleum purchased a large number of energy companies in the USA.

Spill, Baby, Spill


Huge blowouts followed by fire are uncommon during oil drilling but oil spills are common. Some of the reasons of the spills might be oil ships hitting objects or other accidents causing the oil spill. Apparently, as the level of depth increases, the water pressure, oil pressure increases and becomes difficult to control. The strength of the pipes could not withstand the pressure resulting in a major blowout. Despite the technology and computer alarming systems, the blowout became unavoidable.

On April 20, 2010, in the Macondo Prospect oil field, an oil well exploded. As a result, around 1.1 million gallons of oil per day is leaking in to the Gulf of Mexico. The oil slick is spreading and has covered around two thousand miles on the water.

Whose fault is it anyway?

While the oil well is owned by British Petroleum, it is maintained by Transocean company in that area. British Petroleum helds Transocean responsible for the maintenance and hence the blow out. Whereas, Transocean helds British Petroleum responsible for the quality issues. Currently, British Petroleum accepted the responsibility for cleaning up the ocean. But, not sure if how to control the blowout in the first place.

BP is using toxic chemical dispersant such as Corexit 9500 that may clean up the spill but may kill the entire life in the oceans. Further, BP have tried cutting the leaking pipe and putting a cap over it. But, that effort failed too.

Kill, Baby, Kill


Currently, as BP and the entire world remains clueless as what to do to control the current blow out, the oil slick has reached Florida beaches and may reach the east coast within the next month. The slick is reaching the tourists in the Florida beaches in Pensacola.

Further, there are no contingency plans thought of or backup plans laid up in these emergency situations. Also, the President visits pulls in temporary clean up staff on the coasts. The cleanup staff apparently leave as soon as the President leaves the coast!

BP Efforts

BP promises to pay the fishermen a loss of pay but not sure for how manu months. They may clean up the slick, but cannot control the damage already done. The website has toll free numbers for ideas, suggestions and volunteers in this regard.

The containment dome was successful but the cleanup may take even longer time.