My Seaside Story

For 30 years, our dream for Seaside has been the dream we have for life itself.  Simplicity, grace, elegance. Fashions have changed. Wars have come and gone.  And a wave of technology has changed the way we exist. But the fact remains that Seaside reminds us of what is truly real and significant in life. A simple connection to family and friends and the world around us. The story of Seaside is the story of lives touched by this simple philosophy. We are all Seaside, because we all share the same dream.  And, perhaps, Seaside continues to help us live that dream. The dream of a simple, beautiful life. These are our Seaside stories. Stories of laughter and sadness. Romance and loneliness. Families and friends. Traditions and discoveries. My Seaside Story is a yearlong storytelling experience, a setting for us to share our stories. For the past three decades, hundreds and hundreds of them have washed ashore.

What is your Seaside story? | |
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Carey McWhorter’s Real Contribution

Posted on June 25th at 3:09 pm 1 Comment

As an architectural photographer, I really didn’t want to buy into the initial trade journal hype over Seaside. Mainly, I was incredulous that this particular “opportunity” was seemingly earmarked for every other photographer in the world besides me.

Tied to my regular magazine assignments in Denver at the time, we were barely able to make ends meet, so any dream my wife and I may have had for traveling down to see this place were about as likely as to come our way as a big fat check from Publisher’s Sweepstakes. Meanwhile, (as I imagined it), Steven Brooke must surely be driving a Roller or Bentley by years end, assuming he hadn’t opted for the 93′ Benetti and that beachfront gallery in Majorca instead.

By the time the critics had long since moved on to flashier projects, I too had outgrown much of my original interest in this peculiar form of trophy-hunting. One day, as I was counting my lift-tickets & concert stubs from Red Rocks, I concluded that “true success,” (should it ever come my way), would begin as soon as I could get aboard an ocean-sailing craft. Crazy as it seemed, I deducted that the closest path to fame and riches for me was to live among the celebrated yacht builders near Ft. Lauderdale.

It was 2004 before I chanced upon a freeway exit, simply labeled “Seaside – 1 mile.” And I was literally shaking from excitement as I drove into the hamlet at a roaring 28 mph.

Having no real reason to be there, I literally felt for a minute that I had barged into some stranger’s living room.

Timidly, I strolled about town for a little over an hour before I felt relaxed enough to get behind the wheel and back on the highway, albeit utterly unconvinced that I had accomplished anything of value all day. But, as I made that last hard left, back towards the highway, I noticed a sign that read architect, and on a lark I decided to pay the folks a quick visit, just to say thanks.

Details aside, there is no question in my mind that MOST of the credit for this architectural treasure trove is simply due to the miraculous conviction and selfless attitudes that people like Carey McWhorter and his wife had contributed to the process. Together, their spirits telegraphed a rare joie de vivre, or quality of life, which reminded me of this near Biblical truism, as penned by Frank Lloyd Wright: “Mankind inhabits architecture, thereafter, architecture inhabits us!”

Obviously, many other equally talented people were required to build Seaside. They always seem to whisper; savor this moment and DO let everyone know it, whenever you happen to stumble upon what’s truly important in all of our lives.

One Response to Carey McWhorter’s Real Contribution

  1. Richard Clark says:

    We vacationed in Destin, Florida this summer. My wife heard about Seaside from reading about ” The Truman Show “. So we drove to see it for ourselves. We made a pledge to return as soon as we could and stay there for a few days to experience the community. For the most part everyone gets around on bikes. Everything you need is in the town. ( including the sightseeing ) beaches are gorgeous. They also have planned events for all age groups. It is as close to utopia as you can get on earth unless you are in the top two percent of wealth in the world. But not even money can buy the sense of family and community this town emulates. It welcomes all strangers as long as they do not upset the quaint rhymic living environment it has established. We look forward to visiting soon.

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