Friday, October 17, 2008

Georgia Traveler-inspired Columbus Journey

This weekend, viewers will have a chance to watch Georgia Traveler's Episode 107 - Southern Rivers North (Columbus) tonight, Friday, October 17 at 9 PM, Saturday, October 18 at 7 PM, and Wednesday, October 22 at 7:30 PM on GPB. And if you have a digital tuner, you can also watch Episode 107 on the newly launched GPB Knowledge channel (8.3) on Saturday, October 18 at 8 PM and Sunday, October 19 at 8 AM.

In this particular episode of Georgia Traveler, Gerald Bryant explores the National Civil War Naval Museum and Phil Proctor finds a food favorite, Lieutenant’s Scrambled Dog at the Dinglewood Pharmacy, both of which are located in Columbus. Now I don't know about you, but when I watch the show, I often want to do what our hosts are doing. As the Executive Producer of the show I produce many of the segments and get to experience a great many things, but, I'd never been to the National Civil War Naval Museum or to the Dinglewood Pharmacy for the Scrambled Dog. Through my responsibilities on the show, I see each episode many, many times. My craving for a Scrambled Dog had reached a fever pitch. I recruited my Dad, a big Civil War history fan- of course, he'd want me to say War Between the States- to accompany me on an outing to Columbus. And what better day to explore than Columbus Day?

So on the observance of Columbus Day this past Monday, October 13, we embarked on a Daddy-Daughter Day to the great city of Columbus in search of naval knowledge and scrambled dogs. We were not disappointed. Mom snapped this picture on the left just before we left my parents' home in Marietta at about 10:15 AM. We planned our departure time to avoid the Atlanta morning traffic snarls. Our first stop was the National Civil War Naval Museum at Port Columbus. Whew! Long name but great place. Dad took this picture to the right of me in front of the museum. They have great directions and all kinds of other information on their website.

We wandered the museum's exhibits for about two and a half hours. There is a lot to see here and excellent interpretive materials. The most impressive display is that of the remains of the CSS Jackson. The exhibit gives the visitor a feel for just how large the ironclads were. It's actually quite amazing so this picture doesn't really do it justice. As you might expect when archivists are trying to protect historic materials, the light is very low in the museum. Personally, I think it actually enhances the experience even if it makes for not-so-great pictures. Some of the displays are interactive. I took this picture of Dad at the imaginary helm of a ship in the Timeline Exhibit which lays out the history of the naval action during the Civil War (War Between the States). We got a feel for Admiral David Farragut's flagship, the USS Hartford, in the model of several parts of that ship and we watched a film about the CSS Albemarle in the "battle theater". It's narrated from the point of view of one of the "powder monkeys", the youngest sailors in the navy.

After all that, we looked at the newest exhibit, the USS Waterwitch. It's easily visible from Victory Drive- it's a full size model of the paddle wheel powered steamer that was captured in a daring raid by the Confederate navy off the coast of Savannah in June 1864. To read more about the interesting history of the Waterwitch, click here. The model is still under construction, so, it's not quite ready for visitors but Dad snapped this picture from the road as we were heading off toward the Dinglewood Pharmacy for a late lunch.

And what a lunch it was! We ordered up Scrambled Dogs and chocolate shakes. It was just as tasty as I had anticipated. To the right, that's Dad getting ready to dig in... and to the left below, that's a close up of my scrambled dog with cheese, onions and pickles. And in case you're wondering about the white-looking things, those are oyster crackers. If you haven't seen the Georgia Traveler segment about the Dinglewood Pharmacy, a scrambled dog is a bun, chopped hot dog, chili and oyster crackers layered into a white porcelain dish. While the Dinglewood Pharmacy doesn't have a website, you can track 'em down Track at 1939 Wynnton Road, Columbus, GA 31906. The phone number is 706-322-0616.

I know my Dad and I certainly enjoyed our trip to Columbus to experience these wonderful sights and tastes. Tune in tonight at 9PM, tomorrow at 7PM or next Wednesday, October 22 at 7:30PM for Georgia Traveler's Southern Rivers North episode.

Don't miss the other features in Episode 107! David Zelski takes a ride on the SAM Shortlline through Cordele, Leslie, Plains, Archery and Americus. And Gerald enjoys the delights of Georgia’s Official Barbeque Cooking Contest at the Big Pig Jig in Vienna.

You can watch Georgia Traveler 107 online by clicking here.

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