Thursday, May 1, 2014

The Miraculous Spiral Staircase of Loretta Chapel

Happy May 1st everyone! I wasn't able to finish my next stop-motion series episode, “Animal Face-Off: Brown Bear vs. Siberian Tiger” by today, but I should be able to have it published next week. It's going to be really cool! I have taken all the photographs necessary to complete it, so I'd say that I'm roughly 50% finished. As I mentioned before, Animal Face-Off season two is going to have more episodes and more cool creatures than the first season. I'm very pleased with how well Animal Face-Off season one went last year. One of my videos (Tyrannosaurus vs. Spinosaurus) has over 10,000 hits as of the last time I checked! Season 2 will hopefully be really awesome! Now let's move on to our “usuals”.

Days Till
It is: 10 days till Mother's Day
It is: 45 days till Father's Day
It is: 64 days till Independence Day

In the Spotlight
As with last week, more production pictures from the upcoming Jurassic World movie (which used to be called Jurassic Park IV) have appeared on the internet over the past week. I'm really glad that the news topic for this film has changed from casting rumors. Now that we know most of the main cast, there's not that many rumors to be made! Anyway, here are a selection of photographs from the Jurassic World set area. Do some of them look vaguely familiar?

The first two photos are from the same set we saw being constructed in some other recent photographs several weeks ago. Theories as to what it was ranged from a viewing platform to view dinosaurs to a research station of some kind. Thanks to these pictures, we now know that this is a helipad. We don't know if this is just for the helicopter the camera guys will use to film from the sky, or if it is actually a set. Whatever the case, it looks cool. The last picture is one of the choppers the film makers are using to film air shots.

Here are some more photographs that have been taken of the interiors and exteriors of the Hawaii Convention Center, the location some believe to be the where the shots for the Visitor Center in the movie will be filmed

It hasn't yet been confirmed, but it looks like this building could indeed serve as the filming location for the Visitor Center. Of course, special effects will have to be applied in order to make it look like a Visitor Center on the tropical island of Nublar where tourists will be preparing to see real life dinosaurs!

This last photograph is of a helicopter that will be in the film:
As you can see, the words "InGen" are on the helicopter's side. This is important because as many of you might already know, InGen was the company that bioengineered the dinosaurs and created Jurassic Park. It's nice to know that InGen might be appearing in the film in one way or another. I was kind of hoping that it would.

Topic of the Week by Joy Hammond, as told to by Lizzy the Lizard

Who constructed these beautiful staircases in the Loretta Chapel in 1872? We don't know, but read more about them in the article below.
A mystery that has plagued people for decades has intrigued me to go with and take a look myself. Allow me to introduce myself, my name is Lizzy the Lizard and I've asked Daniel P. Smiwthwater, my boss's photographer to come with me on interesting journey to the Loretta Chapel in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Rumor has it that a staircase was built there and that it's maker's identity lays unknown. I've decided to go check out this sight. I asked for a private tour with Nathaniel and asked some questions to our tour guide Bill.
“What makes this staircase famous other than the mysterious identity of it's maker?”
“Well in order to explain that I'd have to take you back to 1872.” Bill exclaimed, “Jean-Baptiste Lamy ordered for a convent to be built for the Loretta sisters.”
“How does that explain anything?” i interrupted,as Nathaniel took some pictures.
“Where's the support beams and all?” Nathaniel muttered.
“Hold a second, listen” Bill stated, “They hired a french architect named Antoine Mouly to build this convent. However he died suddenly and later on after much of the building was complete did the builders realized that a staircase was needed to reach the choir loft. They were in a huge predicament since the the staircases then where too big. One day a carpenter came by and asked if he could build a staircase for them.”
“Saint Joseph!” I interrupted.
“Actually no one know his name,” Bill insisted. “So it is said, the carpenter asked for complete privacy and locked himself up in the chapel for three months. When it was finished, he vanished without a trace. He made a spiral staircase, with no supports beams or anything. He just used his primitive tools and his own two hands. The wood that he used was like nothing seen in New Mexico. No one knows who he is, how he built the staircase, or where he got his wood from.”

“Why did they name him Joseph, if they didn't know who he was?” I asked.
“Good question” Bill said, rubbing his chin. “The sisters of Loretta offered a reward for the identity of the carpenter but no one came. Eventually they believed that it was the St. Joseph that built the impossible staircase.”

“Wow that is an amazing story!” I exclaimed, “boy I wish I could go back in time and found out what happened to him.”

“Don't we all” he chuckled, as I looked at the staircase.
So as we packed up our bags and headed back to New York, I thought about the carpenter and his good dead. How he didn't accept the praise. People like that are rare to find but when they come to your door, you are very blessed. Doing something to help others and not accepting any praise or reward is one of the amazing ways people reveal who they truly are. So the next time you notice a problem that you can fix such as helping someone out. Do a secret good deed and don't let them know. You'll realize you feel good inside and so will the person you helped.

The Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe, New Mexico.

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Disclaimer: Some (or all) of the photographs above are not my own; if you own them and would like them taken off this blog, politely make the request and it will be done.

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