Dharma Bear Initiative

Illinois

Location: Indiana & Illinois

Host: Lost4Eternity/Tanya

Dates: September 2-12, 2009

     George comes to Northern Indiana looking forward to seeing some great sites.  His host Tanya did a fantastic job taking him to the following places: In nearby Chicago Illinios, the Silver Bean in Millenium Park, The Sears/Willis Tower, Navy Pier and The Magnificent Mile. In Indiana they went to the Dunes, Lake Michigan, and a historical site in Griffith Indiana where there is an army tank and some significant railroad yards.

 

      But unfortunately, according to Murphy's Law, "Everything that can go wrong will go wrong".  When uploading all the great pictures from the camera to the computer, a technical malfunction occurred and all but 3 pictures were LOST.  So here they are; Near I-64 & Wrigley's field in Chicago and with his lovely host, Tanya.



Illinois


Location: Illinois

Host: LostPepperGirl/Tammy

Dates:  September 14-21, 2009


George is positive that he has arrived at Lost Pepper Girl's house



He is greeted by an entourage of fellow bears welcoming him to Eureka, Illinois.
Wait, is that a Dharma logo? Is this another Dharma station??
Oh well, he decides to join the "other" bears for a group shot.



The Eureka Hornet bear was George's new best friend



Suddenly, George sees a familiar face and thinks it's awesome that
Jorge Garcia sent greetings with an autographed picture.  Pepper just
recently went to Toronto for a GWN Convention and everyone who
 went got an autographed picture.  George would have gone with, but
didn't make it to Peppers house in time to go on that trip with her.



No time to reminisce with Jorge as it's off to a marching band competition
in the nearby town of Washington where he gets his photo taken with
Lost Pepper Girl, Peppers son Caleb and several other band members. 
George even gets to go become a groupie for the EHS Marching Hornets.
He thinks the saxophone section is pretty awesome and they have fantastic
 looking uniforms. George learns what a sousaphone is and really hopes
that he doesn't fall in.  The band takes the field and George absolutely
enjoys the performance.



On Sunday, George takes a trip to Starved Rock State

Park near Oglesby to sight see and do some hiking. 

George didn't realize that rocks get hungry.



In the visitor's center, he sees a section of an Elm tree that was growing

in the 1800's and even had a bullet from the Civil War embedded in it.



George becomes distracted at the fish tank.
Hmmm... those swimming fishies would taste better than fish biscuits.



George checks out one of the displays and

thinks that the Illinois Indians had strange igloos.



After hiking for a while, George takes a break to admire the view

of the Illinois River and the tall sandstone bluffs.  Lost Pepper Girl

and her son sit and rest with George, because this hiking is hard work. 

Along the way, George finds a really cool stone bridge and

then spends some time climbing around on the sandstone cliffs.




On the way back from Starved Rock, they come upon a couple of curious signs. 
One seems to indicate a place that is either for fans of LOST or lost ants
and the other seems to be related to the Dharma Flame Station. 
It looks as though it was turned into a restaurant.




After lunch, we head on over to Tower Park in Peoria Heights.
Did I mention that we are going up in the tower? 
Caleb and George try not to look down, but it is a great view of the river.
Up in the tower there are some city directional signs.
We couldn't find Hawaii, but it looks like we are
 9,250 miles from Sydney, Australia.



On Monday, George goes to work with Lost Pepper Girl and

guards her drink for her.  Because he did such a good job,

he gets to sit in her chair.




After work, they head over to Metamora where Abraham Lincoln often
came to perform duties as a lawyer there at the courthouse. 
Speaking of presidents, George then visits the campus at Eureka College where
the 40th President of the United States attended college.  He visits the
Ronald Reagan Peace Garden and Museum.  There he reads about the former
 President's role in tearing down the wall that divided East & West Germany.



Then we head to the Ronald Reagan Museum where George signs the
guest book and looks at a variety of memorabilia.




Thursday evening, it's off to the Pumpkin Festival in Morton IL where George
finds a really, really big pumpkin No wonder Morton Illinois is the
pumpkin capital of the world!



George is excited that the Anheuser-Busch Clydesdales are there and poses next

to one of many huge trailers and then with the Clydesdale horses themselves.




George comes full circle with his visit when he once again heads off to another
marching band competition which was in Morton. Of course he hangs out with
some of those cool saxophone players again.




He also visits a family friend Sandy.

She is a French teacher.


George says, "Je me demande si elle est un fan PERDU."


Translation~  "I wonder if she is a LOST fan."




















After all of the places that George visited, he was glad to spend some

time at Lost Pepper Girl's home with her family.  He played chess with Caleb

and picked out Lost episodes with Peppers husband, known on the boards as

Lost Stranger.  And George has a little fun with Caleb's Lego plane and takes

a ride on his Lego electric train.




After such a fun and busy week, it's time for George to relax in a nice bath

and make himself all spiffy for his trip to Kentucky and beyond.


North Carolina

Location: Kentucky & North Carolina

Host: Mountains Gandalf/Mel

Dates: September 22nd - October 20th


George comes to Kentucky to visit Mel, but darn it, Murphy and his law followed. 

Though Mel was a wonderful and loving host and took care of George well,

she was unable to take him out site seeing in her immediate area. 

In her house he was nice and cozy on a beautiful star quilt Mel's grandmother made. 



And George spent some time learning about Mels favorite football player
T.J. Houshmanzadeh from the Cincinnati Bangals.



Mel did however eventually get to take George on a rocking road trip to
North Carolina for a weekend to visit Beachfairie/Donna where
Ginger bear had been just recently.  On the way he got his picture
 taken at the Tennessee border.



George & Mel met with a good friend Brax/David from Maryland. 
And with Donna & little Bailey in North Carolina. 


They all go out for a day at the beach.  George loves it and realizes

how awesome it is that he has now seen both the Pacific and the Atlantic oceans.





Mel, Bailey & George go fishing.  While there; they met a kind fisherman
named Tony.  He was impressed to hear the story of the traveling bear.
He was more than happy to get his picture taken with George and was
astounded with the fact that Mel drove all the way from Kentucky to
meet Donna and bring a bear.



Young Bailey shares her Happy Meal lunch with George.



Later they go for a ride to see Oak Island where there is a light house.



Around the towns of Wilmington and Southport N.C. there are nice places for
shopping for lots of interesting things.  In particular there is the Bull Frog store. 
George poses with a very welcoming alligator, a patriotic Frog, a large bluefish,
and a set of shark teeth.



In the evening, in Historic downtown Wilmington,
George stops by his very own restaurant.




He poses with some interesting bear sized things, including a model ship of the

C.S.S Colonel Lamb.  It's a Confederate blockade runner ship from 1864.



He also posed with a couple of great looking statues.  A classic tree trunk carving

of an Indian chief and another piece of work that reminds him of the "Boys Town"

statue George had seen in Nebraska.



Before leaving North Carolina to continue his journey,

George spots a beautiful rainbow; a great sight for any bear.

He had a fantastic time with Mel, Donna, Bailey and David.