Tricia Vita

Cover Stories



"Canned Wonders"
Games Magazine


"Greetings from
Coney Island!"
Islands Magazine


"Bet on the Thin Guy"
Holiday Inn Express Navigator


"The Games We Played"
Games Magazine


"The Biggest Little
Show on Earth"
Games Magazine

"Shocked and Amazed: The Strange But True World of the Sideshow Banner," Art New England

Historic Preservation
& Heritage Tourism


An African American family's 145-year-old neighborhood is Fort Worth's newest historic district. Story of the Week in Preservation Online, the National Trust's webzine

A company called Vertical Access goes to extremes for a close-up view of history. Story of the Week in Preservation Online

Can Buffalo, NY, woo tourists with its historic grain elevators? Story of the Week in Preservation Online

Fairy-tale theme parks struggle to make a comeback. Story of the Week in Preservation Online

Museums & Attractions


T + L Family Tips:
In Nashville, artist Red Grooms puts an unusual spin on a favorite ride with the Tennessee Fox Trot Carousel

Nonprofit parks and museums use creative ideas and critical funding to enrich the community

Technological advances allow students to take
part in deep-ocean expeditions at the Mystic Aquarium and Institute for Exploration

A very short piece on the Acme Miniature Circus in Yankee Magazine

Essay/​pictorial on sideshow banner painter Johnny Meah in Raw Vision, the international journal of outsider art

Copyright 1997-2009
Tricia Vita
All rights reserved
No part of this Web site may be used or reproduced in any manner without written permission

Affiliations

Find Authors

Publications

Archived Features


Canned Wonders
Last November, a team from Butler Rogers Baskett Architects pulled an all-nighter at the New York Design Center. Their mission: to build a 10-foot-long hot dog balanced inside a bun and two nearly 8-foot tall condiment bottles out of canned food. A mind-boggling 6,394 cans, to be precise. It was far from an ordinary workday for these five employees of a firm whose clients include the Chelsea Piers sports complex and the jeweler Cartier. Games, September 2005


Greetings from
Coney Island!

I set off for Coney Island on the first Saturday of summer, when King Neptune and Queen Mermaid turn a giant key in the Atlantic to “open the ocean” for the season, to the delight of a half million mortals who come for the annual Mermaid Parade. Islands, December 2000


Bet on the Thin Guy
This battle of widths is one of 15 regional qualifiers for the "big dance"---Nathan's Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest (quite a mouthful). Though Jarvis, Lerman and Lipsitz may sound like a law firm, these guys are the Three Musketeers of the competitive-eating circuit, and I'm here to watch them in action. Holiday Inn Express Navigator, October/November 2001

Art Awhirl!
Like Don Quixote de La Mancha, woodcarver Gerry Holzman has dared to dream an impossible dream: the creation of one of the first all-hand-carved carousels since the 1930s, when the aluminum horse galloped onto the scene.
Art & Antiques, Summer 1998

Conjuring Houdini
In Appleton, Wisconsin, Houdini Elementary School is named after the local boy who grew up to become the world's greatest escape artist. The school's colors are the same as those on the famous magician's cape: red and black. If anything disappears, they blame Harry. Games, November 2001

Step Right Up!
In 1988, Jim Secreto bought his first sideshow banner: a visually arresting image of The Human Blockhead, a turbaned fakir with spikes hammered up his nostrils and pins piercing his tongue. Nine years and 35 banners later, Secreto's collection of carnival curiosities has entered the rarefied realm of 20th-century folk art.
Art & Antiques, April 1997

Short Takes


Sherlock's Home
Connecticut's puzzle palace was built in 1919 at a cost of about $1 million, a kingly sum in those days. Its sole architect was the actor-director-playwright William Gillette, who made his fortune originating the stage role of Sherlock Holmes.
Stagebill, June 2002


Log Home Lifestyle


Perfect Harmony
Milled logs of northern white pine selectively harvested from Quebec's Outaouais forest and a holistic design system that originated in India come together in a Vedic-style chalet in the cornfields of Iowa. “Log homes are green, natural and nourishing—it’s an unbelievable product if you consider it,” says Doug Greenfield, president of Fairfield, Iowa-based Maharishi Global Construction. Luxury Log Homes & Timber Frame, Summer 2005


Blossoming
in the Blue Ridge

For Gisele Weisman, whose log home is perched on the side of Grandfather Mountain, the highest peak in North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Range, the adventure began with an inheritance of 17 acres of land. “When I came up here to try to figure out what to do with it,” says Weisman, “I was mesmerized by the magnificent view of the St. John’s River Gorge. There was no question I had to live here.”
Country's Best Log Homes, March 2006

A Natural Beauty
Montana’s Stillwater Valley is an outdoorsman’s paradise. The Stillwater River, which is anything but still in this south-central part of the state, draws fly fisherman, kayakers and whitewater rafters. The river flows between the Absaroka Range and Beartooth Mountains, through Custer National Forest, where miles of trails attract hikers and horseback-riders. Elk and deer abound. Only a lucky few homo sapiens call this pristine wilderness area their home. Among them are the owners of a spectacular log home nestled in a canyon a few miles south of the old gold mining town of Nye. Country's Best Log Homes, September 2005

Children's Book


The Ten-Woman Bicycle
"An amusing look at 'emancipation,' in which one sees what wonders resourcefulness, tenacity and independence can lead to."---Utrecht Daily News (Holland)

Translations


One Thousand and One-Second Stories
"This collection brings the eccentric, influential work of Taruho into English for the first time...
Vita provides an informative biographical and literary introduction."---Publishers Weekly

Selected Work

Features
Canned Wonders
Charitable competitions produce remarkable feats of Canstruction®
Greetings from Coney Island!
A former carny kid casts an insider's eye on the world's most famous beach amusement park
Bet on the Thin Guy
Upon examining recent advances in speed-eating techniques, we would like to offer you the following advice...
Art Awhirl!
An Empire State carousel maker's dream machine is almost set to spin
Conjuring Houdini
Searching for the spirit of the great escape artist in his American hometown
Step Right Up!
For one fairground art collector it's always a banner year
Short Takes
Sherlock's Home
Sleuthing the mysteries of Gillette's Castle in Connecticut
Log Home Lifestyle
Perfect Harmony
Milled logs of northern white pine from Quebec's Outaouais forest and a holistic design system that originated in India come together in a Vedic-style chalet in the cornfields of Iowa
Blossoming in the Blue Ridge
A city girl finds a new lifestyle, a new career, and recognition as an artist in a picturesque mountain town
A Natural Beauty
A red cedar home blends perfectly with its surroundings in Montana's Stillwater Valley
Stories for Children
The Ten-Woman Bicycle
"A tribute to the role of the bicycle in women's history...humorously told...wittily illustrated," Children's Book Bulletin (UK)
Translations
One Thousand and One-Second Stories
A gem of early modernism by the Japanese Dadaist Inagaki Taruho