Playing “I Spy” at the Connecticut State Capitol

Visiting state capitol buildings is one of the first things we do when visiting the capital city. It’s a little ironic that it took our family, who has lived in Connecticut for almost 20 years, this long, but we recently, finally made it to the CT Capitol for a tour. Connecticut was founded in 1662 and is known as the Constitution State, as it was the first state to adopt a constitution.  Built in 1878, the Connecticut Capitol building, located in downtown Hartford, was designed by Richard M. Upjohn to replicate a Victorian Gothic style. The building overlooks Bushnell Memorial Park’s 41 acres in the heart of Hartford and was restored in the 1980s to the original colors and design. The addition of the Legislative Office Building (LOB), which opened in 1988, allowed for office space for Connecticut’s 151 Representatives (each representing approximately 25,000 constituents)  and 36 State Senators (each representing approximately 90,000-100,000 constituents). The “LOB” also allows for more public meeting spaces and opportunities for state officials to meet as committees and with public interest groups. The first and second floors of the LOB and the first floor of the Capitol are both open to the public; upper level floors house private offices and chambers and guests must be accompanied by officials. 

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7 Stops on the Tour of the Massachusetts State House

Located in downtown Boston, on the south side of Beacon Hill and overlooking the Boston Common and Back Bay, the Massachusetts State House was constructed in 1798 and served as the state house until the mid 1880s. The land where the capitol was built was donated by John Hancock, the first elected governor of Massachusetts and the building remains the oldest on Beacon Hill.

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The Old State House; the Boston National Historical Park

The Old State House, built in 1713, is the oldest building in Boston. It has been restored several times since it was saved by demolition in 1881. In addition to being the State House, the building also served as City Hall in the mid 1800s.  It’s famous for overlooking the Boston Massacre and being the site of the first reading of the Declaration of Independence in Boston. In 1903 a branch of the subway was installed. 

With your admission ticket, each guest receives a lanyard and card and assigned historical figure from the Revolution Era. Each card includes biographical information, social rank, and age. Use this information at several exhibits throughout the museum.

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Pennsylvania State Capitol

Touted as the “handsomest building” President Theodore Roosevelt ever saw, the five story Pennsylvania State Capitol, covers over 5 acres in downtown Harrisburg. The current 600 room building was completed in 1906, after a 1897 fire destroyed the original building. It’s “home” to the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, State Senate, State House of Representatives, and State Supreme Court,  The campus now includes 10 additional buildings, although the main Capitol Building and East Wing will be most appealing to visitors.

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Six Ways to Explore Providence, Rhode Island in the Winter

Rhode Island make take some heat for being the smallest state in America, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in family-friendly fun. Providence, the state capital, is located one hour south of Boston and three hours north of New York City. My family has driven through the Ocean State several time on the way to visit family (check out my posts on nearby Newport, Bristol, and The Farmer’s Daughter) but we’ve never stayed in town for more than a day.

On our way home from celebrating Christmas in Boston, we decided to spend some time exploring Providence. Even though the weather was chilly (mid 20s-30s), we enjoyed lots of indoor and outdoor fun. Here are some of our favorite activities for family fun in Providence:

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Year in Review: Highlights of 2018

2018 was an exciting, adventure filled year for my family. We started a bit early by purchasing a new 2018 Chevy Equinox, and to date-exactly 54 weeks later- we have over 26,000 miles on the odometer. We’ve been as far west as Texas, as far south as Florida, and as far north as Maine. We’re explored over a dozen states, over twenty National Parks Service locations, over two dozen museums, two baseball parks (that brings our total count to 24 out of the 30 MLB parks), and created countless memories.

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