marine life

A Look Inside Tropics

Here it is!

The wonderful employees of Tropics spoke to Beachy Keen about how the store got started, what they do there and why they love it.

This is the first video I’ve ever made and put together, and while there’s obviously room for improvement, I have to say my favorite parts of my video were the introduction where Andreas tells his story and my B-roll where I put in lots of clips of all the fish they have at the store. I chose an alternative introduction (not one with a description/title) because I wanted the viewer to be immediately immersed in Andreas’ story.

As far as my field of study, I’m involved in Broadcast Journalism. I just made the switch from my previous major, Art & Design. With broadcast, my experiences so far have been with writing scripts, technical directing and anchoring. Can you tell I haven’t made any packages yet? 🙂

If I had to do it over, I would get more shots of the inside of the store, and to interview a customer. Overall, I’m happy with my project!

Enjoy!

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Giovanni’s Fish Market

Giovanni’s Fish Market has been a huge attraction in Morro Bay, California for the past thirty years. Beachy Keen loves anything seafood related, so naturally checking out Giovanni’s was a must-do.

Update on the Monarch Butterflies

Beachy Keen decided that the monarch butterflies at Pismo Beach are too phenomenal to discuss just once.

So many pictures were taken; some great, some blurry (if you can imagine the insanity of chasing around a flying insect with your 18-55 mm lens). But here’s a favorite:

So graceful. Image by Avrah Baum.

So graceful. Image by Avrah Baum.

Now that it’s the second half of February, they’ve slowly begun leaving their colony in Pismo to head back up north, many to Canada. They travel in groups of thousands, and the Pismo Beach Monarch Grove is one of the largest in the nation, where about 25,000 monarchs have called home in the past 5 years. The monarch butterflies that come down to Pismo originate from west of the Rocky Mountains. The butterflies that migrate down from east of the Rockies fly all the way down to Mexico for the winter.

Justin Trabue, a student at California Polytechnic State, San Luis Obispo appreciates the rare opportunity to see monarch butterflies. “I’m from D.C., so I don’t get to see this at home,” Trabue said. “That’s why I think it’s so cool to be able to come here and see thousands and thousands of them in one place.”

Michael Chen and his wife, Tiffany Chen are tourists that enjoy observing the natural wildlife at the many places they’ve traveled to. They brought their own cameras, binoculars and tripods with them and set up along the wooden bar separating the grove from the walkway. “I could stand here all day and look at them,” Chen said. “We invest a lot of money in our equipment to take excellent pictures to show our family.”

You don’t need a fancy camera to experience the beauty of the grove. Just go, and enjoy a few peaceful minutes with nature without a gadget in hand. It does wonders for the soul.

There are still butterflies preparing for their journey, so if you hurry, you can still see them for the next couple of weeks when the skies are clear and the weather is warm. Although the weather along the Central Coast is a bit fickle, don’t be too discouraged if it isn’t a good day to see the butterflies…

The monarchs are keeping warm in clusters high up in the trees on foggy days. Image by Avrah Baum.

The monarchs can be seen keeping warm in clusters high up in the trees on foggy days. Image by Avrah Baum.

You can easily see them from your own window!

If you want to create a mini monarch grove of your own, David Coon, a docent with San Luis Obispo State Parks (Beachy Keen just loves this guy) has some advice. “They like to eat nectar from flowers. They don’t usually need to eat in the winter, but if you have any flowering plants, it’ll attract them to your yard.” Beachy Keen spots monarchs across California Polytechnic State University’s campus all the time!

Good luck spotting the monarchs as they migrate north, and don’t forget to pick up some potted flowers for your garden!

Stay tuned: Beachy Keen has crazy plans throughout the next few weeks. Get ready to see Santa Cruz, California and Monterey Bay!

Review: Sun N Buns Bakery

YUM!

Beachy Keen visited Sun N Buns Bakery in Morro Bay, California, and the well-known coffee shop did not disappoint. Besides coffee, they offer pastries, espresso, ice cream, and even dog treats! This family-owned business has been here for years and is a favorite among locals and travelers alike.

IMG_7865Sun N Buns Bakery. Image by Avrah Baum.

Their mochas are excellent, and their ice cream is a real treat. Their prices are fair and the indoor seating offers a sunny atmosphere to chat with friends and enjoy some of their pastries and sweets.

If it doesn’t sound good enough, they sell T-shirts and tank tops that read, “Everybody wants my buns”.

If you were wondering, yes, Beachy Keen definitely bought one.

An interactive map!

To give all of Beachy Keen’s adventures some perspective, take a look at this interactive map of the Central Coast! You can glance at some of the locations where many blog posts have been done. Using ThingLink was tricky at first, but it provides beautiful interactive graphics for a multitude of purposes within educational, personal, and professional uses. Enjoy!

Click the image below to view more pictures from Beachy Keen’s adventures.

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The background image is from Wikipedia.org, used with permission by the Creative Commons license. All tagged images are taken by Avrah Baum.

Feedback!

Since starting this blog 6 weeks ago, I have posted articles, slide-shows and reviews of beaches, aquariums, and marine life to discover along the Central Coast. I want to thank everyone who has even taken a glance at my blog and given me feedback; it’s not possible to move forward and constantly improve without constructive criticism.

My Stats:

I’ve had 282 views on my blog, and 109 individual visitors. I haven’t been using social media to advertise very much, however I have added a link with my twitter, created its own Instagram, and I finally shared it on my Facebook page. In class, we conducted a peer assessment of our blogs to receive more focused feedback. Here’s what I got:

1. Use sub-headlines. Lupita Rodriquez, author of A Golden View suggested this. Absolutely! I didn’t think to do this, but it’s totally useful in helping readers get a sense of what my articles are about before they choose to dive in. Making my opening statements catchy is also important.

2. Increase font size. Lupita also recommended this. In general, I’ve thought about changing the theme of my blog, which would also re-arrange how my media would be presented. I can’t change certain things like font size with my current theme, so I’m looking into another theme I could use that would maximize the readability of my blog.

Thank you to those of you so far who have read Beachy Keen! I’ve enjoyed this experience so much that after this class is over, I’m planning on continuing it and making it more my own. Any comments & suggestions are more than welcome, so let me know your thoughts!

Keeping it Beachy Keen,

Avrah