The Factory of Dreams: St. Louis Corvette Plant

  This Book Is An Excellent Gift For Nostalgic Classic Car Enthusiasts, Especially Corvette Lovers!

For a number of years, the St. Louis Corvette plant defined a way of life for thousands of St. Louis area workers, including Granite City business owner, Mike Dixon of Dixon Heating & Cooling.

In 1981, the assembly line at the St. Louis Corvette plant halted for good.   “It was a combination of track on the floor, pushed hand carts and what workers called a ‘knife-edge’ conveyor.” ~ Corvette Magazine.   The plant shut its doors and production moved south to Bowling Green, Kentucky, but the memories remain and Mike Dixon decided it was time to share his experience in the story.

“On August 1, 1981, the St. Louis Corvette Assembly came to a final halt, and the last Corvette built there rolled out of the factory. ” ~ CorvetteActionCenter.Com

My dad was a lover of classic cars and loved perusing at car shows.  If he were still on this earth, I’d buy him this book as a gift from my heart because I know he’d really enjoy reading it.  If you know someone in a Corvette Club this book will make a great gift for them too.

“There Are Really Two Stories Told In The Book.

One is about the car, but the other is a peek into the life of an auto worker in the 1950s and ‘60s, when the industry was at its peak for its workers.  It shares an engineering triumph, by St. Louis and automotive engineers.  It’s about the startup of the plant, but it’s also about the history of the cars and the men who built them.”  Melissa Meske ~ Advantage News

Dixon Now Has His Hands On Corvettes As An Owner Of Them.

He has five of them and enjoys taking them to Classic Car Shows, including his 1972 red convertible Corvette with its value being sentimental and not just material.   Mike had a part in putting this one together when he worked at the factory.

“I did a VIN search, determining when and where it was built.  From that, I know it is one that I dropped the body on. And it only took me 40 years to own it,” Dixon said, laughing.”

Did You Know That Channel 9 Actually Had Its Own Corvette?   Watch The Video Below and Listen To How That Deal Was Made.

“The Corvette Emerged As Its Own Statement That A Machine Can Also Be Art.”


Published in October 2018, The Factory of Dreams: St. Louis Corvette Plant is a brand new book for Corvette enthusiasts & automobile history lovers, and is now available on   Please post your review & give it a rating after you’ve read it.  Thank you!   Enjoy!

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Life Is Better On The Farm Happy Trails Farm Logo Mug

Help Support The Happy Trails Farm Horse Rescue Foundation

Help Support The Happy Trails Farm Horse Rescue Foundation

Have you heard of the Happy Trails Farm Horse Rescue Foundation yet?

First of all, this place is spectacular and there are many ways to be of assistance.  I’ve personally made arrangements to sell a mug with the farm’s logo featured on it with profits from any sales to be donated to the Happy Trails Farm Horse Rescue Foundation.    This item is not found offline.  Taking care of rescues is expensive.  Sales will benefit the rescues, such as medical expenses, food, and farrier services.   Place your secure order by clicking here.

This place has been there for me and mine as an inexpensive family outdoor recreational place to go for many years.  They’ve treated us like family and now I wish to return the gesture by paying it forward.  You can  click here to place a secured order.  To learn about other ways you can help this organization Click here to visit their website.   Thank you for your time and consideration!

If you would like to donate money without receiving a souvenir you can make checks or money orders payable to Happy Trails Farm Horse Rescue Foundation and  mail it to: P.O. Box 1577, Granite City, IL 62040

Read about my experience with Happy Trails Farm.

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Encountering A Symbol Of Authority

In the event of an encounter with a symbol of authority perception matters and so do manners.

It’s a good thing to be perceptive.  It means to be aware of our environment and those in it.  The Madison County Sheriff’s Department is located in Edwardsville Illinois.  They created an educational video to serve as a tool for helping to reduce confrontation anxiety.  Also in this article you’ll find access to tactical and First Responder supplies.   If you’d rather skip past the lessons and see 10 viral videos of the lip sync challenge, then just keep scrolling down.

Maybe you were in a rush to get to work.

Maybe you’re trying to avoid severe weather, are running late for school, or just appear suspicious.  For whatever reason you find yourself stopped by a cop, remain calm and try to be pleasant, even if you encounter an officer who isn’t.  View the video below to watch their lesson. It covers what to expect during a traffic stop in under four minutes.  “This video is designed to reduce the stress and anxiety through information and knowledge. An informed community is a safer community.” – Lt. Kris Tharp.

Now Ponder This!

When we use our manners to behave respectfully towards others, we ideally expect them to return the gesture.  Realistically, that doesn’t always happen.  Civil servants are a symbol of authority and looked to as an example. Not all set a good one though, and bad experiences can be disheartening for those of any viewpoint.  When we abase each other we make unpleasant memories that cause discord and separation, which then leads to issues that have further contributed to a social crisis.  The truth is that it’s important to consider how we interact with others.  Whether online or off, as a civilian or officer, our actions invoke a reaction.  Developing and improving our social skills is vital.  It’s possible as individuals for us to reach our highest levels of potential no matter our titles or hindrances. Social media is an excellent tool for getting practice. Practice is what makes the master.

Not all people deserve the condemnation they’ve received.

There are bad apples in every tree.  It doesn’t mean the branches are bad or that the roots are dead.  It’s important to remember that we’re all human beings.  Most of us care to right the wrongs that are done.  That’s why many officers enlist and put their lives at risk in the first place.  Productive members of society seek to labor according to our abilities in order to be enabled to provide for our families.  It’s stated by definition that police officers aren’t civil servants, and that they’re lower ranked as public servants, yet it’s their job to respond first and intervene in uncivil situations.  They are meant as keepers of the peace for the betterment of the public, and they wear badges as symbols of authority, so I beg to differ.


When civil servants fail to set the example.

Civilians should set the example of respect by being the first to show it.  We don’t need to be paid by the public to be civil or to live up to civil servant standards.  It’s necessary for civilization to thrive.  You may be surprised to discover how behavior is reciprocated.  Maybe you won’t.  Even if you’ve been robbed, gas-lighted, defamed, falsely accused, charged, jailed, maced, and beaten for having the audacity to regard your rights despite others violating them, don’t take it out on the next officer you see.  I’m not going to deny the negativity, it’s controversial, and I’ve had some bad experiences myself.  However, my aim here is to point out the positive in an effort to make the most of what I’ve learned from them.

Duty Gear Clearance

The world is riddled with news of those who abuse their authority.

Predators deliberately seek out positions of trust and power of authority because it’s how they gain easy access to prey, but just like not all animals eat meat, not all people are predators.  We have to remember and remind ourselves that not all are guilty over the few who do, regardless of our experiences with the bad apples that manage to infiltrate any association.  If there’s any position we are all associated with it’s being human. We all make mistakes.  We all start out inexperienced and we all share the desire to be a success, to celebrate our successes and to be regarded and respected by others.

I’m perceptive and I’ve been observing a movement.

When I saw the “Lip Sync Challenge” videos by departments all over the nation become viral sensations, I witnessed more than something fun and entertaining for people to watch.  I saw a psychological tool for progress that triggered more than just my sense of respect for civil servants.  I see it from an empowering point of view.  These videos display our ability to relate, unite, and serve as a reminder to our own and other nations, through the use of entertainment, that even though we’ve made mistakes, our bonds can still be strengthened.

America is a melting pot of a nation, made up of cultures as various as the colors of the spectrum.  We live in an era of worldwide virtual connection and our social structures are ever changing.  We can be conservative by holding on to the good and liberal by changing the bad.  That’s how we find middle ground.  The best way to get along with someone who is different than us, or whom we disagree with is to point out our likenesses.

Below is a list of Lip Sync Challenge videos by various departments.

  Wouldn’t it be neat to see more police departments all over the world represent themselves as keepers of the peace by accepting the challenge?  I’ve certainly found it entertaining and educational.  Some tactics maybe unorthodox but they can still be extremely useful, especially when it’s moral and unites our communities.  Click here and add your State to the search bar to see if your department has participated, and if you don’t see your community involved, then be the first to take action.  Encourage your community to participate.

Illinois State Police Department

Columbia Illinois Police Department

Leroy Police Department

Norfolk Virginia Police Department

Bexar County Texas Sheriff’s Office

New Orleans Louisiana Police Department

Get Your Safety Gear Here!

Granite City Illinois Police Department
Granite City Illinois Police Department

Should you wish to study to become a police officer, the job openings are endless.  Thank you for listening.  Your time is appreciated.

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Learn to connect with your guardian angel.  Click here to learn more!

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Director Jesse V. Johnson

Director “Jesse V. Johnson Was Born In Winchester, England and Is An American Film Director and Screenwriter. See The New Trailer For Triple Threat!

About Director Jesse V. Johnson and Review of The Debt Collector Film.

Director “Jesse V. Johnson was born in Winchester, England and is an American film director and screenwriter.”   He’s an accomplished stuntman and coordinator who worked on the set of The Shawshank Redemption.   Holding both US & EU passports he has traveled and worked in exotic places.”   I first met Jesse in person at the Widescreen Film & Music Video Festival event in Miami Florida, where he gave a speech about the making of his fan film trailer for Wonder Woman.  Watch the trailer below.

Wonder Woman – Fan Film from Jesse V. Johnson on Vimeo.

Since then, Jesse has released a number of films with accomplished actors Scott Adkins, Louis Mandylor, Tony Todd, Tony Jaa, Selina Lo, and many more.   The Debt Collector, had a very successful theatrical premiere in Santa Monica California and London, England.  It’s now available on Netflix.

Watch An Interview With Jesse V. Johnson at the Santa Monica Debt Collector Screening below.

Theater tickets sold well in the United Kingdom and the special post movie interview with the director and actors was witnessed by some very lucky movie goers.

You Can Watch The Whole London Q & A Interview By Clicking Here (Fighting Spirit Film Festival Channel ) or Here (Channel Fight.)
 Tony Todd had a lot of fun working on this film.

Louis Mandylor Was Ecstatic About The Project!

Check Out Behind The Scenes Footage!


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Man it was nice to be a man called SUE’ fun times’The Debt Collector’ behind scenes of some action setups!

A post shared by Louis Mandylor (@louismandylor) on

Spoiler Alert!  Skip This Paragraph If You Don’t Want To Read My take From The Movie.

Despite the blood, gore, and violence, I really liked the movie because of the figurative message in it.  It’s powerful enough to make one ponder their own purpose, plus it’s always nice to see when a bad guy changes his mind and does the right thing.  I think the ratings should be much higher than what they’ve been.  People might not be displaying their lack of understanding, or completely disregarding the content of it in their own written reviews, if they understood that the clips of the cows shown in it is a figurative message pertaining to people being spitefully used for a specific purpose before being removed by those who used them.

There is some nudity and sexually provocative segments in the film too, so it’s for mature audiences.  Watch The Debt Collector on Netflix and consider rating the film on IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes when you’ve finished.  I hope you enjoy the film as much as I did!

Triple Threat Is Scheduled To Be In Theaters March 19, 2019!

Watch The New Trailer  Released Below Of Triple Threat!


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Triple Threat (2019) In theaters March 19th. #indiemoviemaking #actionmovies #action #karate #muaythai #kungfu #ufc #silat #mma #martialarts

A post shared by Jesse V Johnson (@actionjessevjohnson) on

Also look for “Avengement”  in the future, and a sequel to “Accident Man.”   It looks to me like Jesse has found himself an excellent team to work with.  You can follow along his journey by connecting with him on Vimeo, Instagram, and Facebook.

See Scott Adkins bring a comic to life in “Accident Man!”


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Visiting Gateway Arch National Park

“People Said It Would Fall.  They Said A Poorly Funded Project Would Leave The Nation With A Half Finished Monument But Instead It Became An International Symbol Of The United States.” There’s So Much To See In St.Louis, Including The Gateway Arch National Park, So Add It To Your Places To Go List, And View All Of Its Works Of Art!

The Gateway Arch Is Always A Sight For Me To See. Not Just The Name Has Changed And Now It’s Even More Impressive As The Gateway Arch National Park.

Show me St. Louis

I grew up just across the river from St. Louis, Missouri.  As a child my parents took me to the amazing museum beneath it, and I think I can recall going once or twice on a school field trip with my peers as well.  I remember being with my parents best because they treated me to a meal on the McDonald’s River Boat.   Talk about a nostalgic memory of experiencing St. Louis.

McDonald’s River Boat

When my children were young the boat was already long gone, but I still took them to the arch grounds too.   There was major renovation done recently and now it’s being rediscovered by folks worldwide as The Gateway Arch National Park, with more access and other activities for tourists to do.

If You Haven’t Been There Or Ever Since Before The Renovation Add It To Your List Of Places To Go And Visit.

You can follow Gateway Arch National Park on twitter and other social media.  View this video about the rediscovery of the Gateway Arch.

Once Upon A Time…

“People said it would fall.  They said a poorly funded project would leave the nation with a half finished monument but instead it became an international symbol of the United States.  It is an architectural & design masterpiece touching everyone who touches it.” – The Gateway Arch: A Reflection of America Documentary.

“The Gateway To The West”

“The Gateway Arch reflects St. Louis’ role in the Westward Expansion of the United States during the nineteenth century.  The park is a memorial to Thomas Jefferson’s role in opening the West, to the pioneers who helped shape its history, and to Dred Scott who sued for his freedom in the Old Courthouse.”   Click here to plan your visit.


More Has Changed Than Just What Was Stated In This video by USA Today.  Visit And See For Yourself!


For Instance, Now It’s More Tourist Friendly. Check Out The Video Time Lapse Of The Renovation.

Check Out The View Of The Courthouse From Up Inside The Arch.   Spectacular!

There’s So Much To See In St.Louis!

The Great Forest Park Balloon Race Takes Place Annually.   Featured Image and Photos Below Are By Justin Barr Of STL From Above.

I’m Always In Awe Of  This Place And I Hope That You Too Will Make Memories As Precious As  The Ones I Have!  Consider Using The Hashtag #STL If You Share Your Experiences on Social Media When Your Next Adventure Takes You On A Tour Of St.Louis.

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Visiting Happy Trails Farm

Happy Trails Farm is a valuable asset to the community.  It’s a fun place for the whole family and an animal rescue too!

Not all heroes are human & family isn’t forgotten.

If you just want to buy the mug to help rescue horses click here.

Visiting Happy Trails Farm has made memories for me and my children that I’ll always be thankful to have.

This small farm is open to the public for visitations on scheduled dates.  Entry is free for most of their events and pony rides are just five dollars per child.  It’s located behind Walmart (in Granite City, Illinois.)  I didn’t have to travel out of the city for a genuine country-life experience.

Preview the farm:

As a struggling single mother, Happy Trails Farm was a big help for providing inexpensive family entertainment.

I first discovered this farm after my mom boarded her horse there.  Happy Trails Farm was ten minutes from the local hospital, my mom’s place of work, and it became like a home away from home for her.   I almost always found mom at this farm and she was happy to be there.  She spent many of her days grooming and bonding with her horse Pretty Girl.  Having a horse was a childhood dream come true for mom, and their boarding services enabled it to happen.

Melody and Pretty Girl

The animals there were fond of mom.

Melody with her grandson and diablo the donkey

My kids always had a great time visiting this farm.

They became fans of llamas after watching “The Emperor’s New Groove.” Your youngsters might enjoy meeting a real live llama after watching it too. There are three llamas living at the farm as of now and their names are Morningstar, Spanky, and Miracle.  Recently Morningstar gave birth to Miracle, the llama baby!  Your kids might enjoy meeting rescue pigs named Dolly, and Cris P. Bacon, a tiny billy goat called Thunder, and Diablo the donkey.  Bring your kids to see and feed the chickens, ducks, geese, and goats.  You can even plan a picnic and pick peaches.

Daughter riding a horse

It’s fun for most kids to ride horses and ponies.  They’ll enjoy feeding the animals too.

Pre-cut veggies and treats are already available for purchase.  We just brought our own bread and a bag of peppermints.  In the process of spending time around all these majestic creatures we all learned a lot about bonding, gentleness, and leadership skills.

Son riding a horse

Happy Trails Farm has grown into a full fledged non profit large hoof animal rescue.

This place is a strong asset to the community.  They have many valuable goods and services to offer the general public.  Now you know where you can board your horses.  The farm has fresh fowl eggs available for purchase at Kool Beanz Cafe.  Happy Trails Farm has staff on board with the credentials to give riding lessons.  One staff member is a barrel racing trophy holder.  Farm animal rentals are available for private and public events.  Venue rental is available for weddings, birthday parties, and other special events.   They’re even located near a famous landmark that has an equine trail.  Happy Trails Farm is all that and a rescue too!  You can learn more by visiting the Happy Trails Farm website.

Happy Trails Farm has been there for me and mine, treating us like family, and now I aim to return the gesture by paying it forward.

Did you know you can help provide for the rescues that Happy Trails Farm takes in?  There are many ways to assist this foundation.  I’ve made special arrangements to sell a mug with the farm’s logo featured on it.  The profits earned from any sales are to be donated to the Happy Trails Farm Horse Rescue Foundation.  It will help cover the costs of rescuing animals, and provide for the necessities of all the rescues.   You can click here to place your secured order.  To learn about other ways you can help Click here!   Thank you for your consideration!

Don’t Forget to Mark your calendar for the dates of the Annual Fall Festival!

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