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Remembering eHow Dolly
eHow Dolly's Grand Adventure
We still remember the day eHow Dolly arrived on our doorstep. She traveled by "limousine," and had most recently been in Western Michigan. But we were only one stop on a year long tour that took her across mountains, prairies, deserts, and even twice across an ocean.
Who is this eHow Dolly and what was the fuss all about? Read on to find out and then test your Dolly knowledge with a quiz, if you like.
All photos by bossypants. Please do not use without permission.
If You Knew Dolly Like I Knew Dolly
Do You Know eHow Dolly?
So, Who is this eHow Dolly?
And Why is eHow Dolly on Squidoo?
eHow Dolly was created by Squidoo lensmaster veryirie for an article she was writing on another site. (Just a shot in the dark, but I'll bet you can figure out which one.) Photos of Dolly began finding their way into that site's forums, to the delight of some of the other writers. The photos were all g-rated, but she looked like a frisky girl, swinging from palm trees and posing with empty bottles of artisan wine. Several of us begged to meet Dolly in person. Who could resist that face?
Once it was decided Dolly should visit her fans across the country, Squidoo lensmaster SPhilbrick (Shirley) began looking for a place where Dolly's hosts could post pictures and accounts of their time with Dolly. Squidoo turned out to be the perfect place!
In fact, that's how I ended up joining Squidoo: with the intention that Dolly would be my first lens. That I didn't write any lenses for almost a year and a half and that Dolly's lens is my eleventh is a story for another time.
Dolly's Grand Adventure
A Big Journey for a Little Girl!
There were a few ground rules. Dolly was to travel via the United States Post Office's Priority Mail to enable location tracking and hopefully keep her from getting lost. Hosts were to keep her no longer than a few days. Hosts should include a post card of their home state and a small token for the next host when sending Dolly on her way. And of course, every one was to play nice, keep Dolly safe, and show her a good time!
A Greater Purpose
Not Just a Pleasure Trip
eHow Dolly's Grand Adventure was about more than a cross country vacation. Dolly was a goodwill ambassador whose travels raised money for charity.
Two charities were selected to benefit: Dolly Parton's Imagination Library and the Mark Sandman Music Project. Squidoo lensmaster dlcass (Diane) established an Aloha Dolly Zazzle store and created a calendar, the profits of which were divided between the charities.
The Adventure Begins
On a Friday the 13th, in November of 2009, Dolly left her paradise home in Hawaii to travel to the opposite end of the United States, Maine, to meet Shirley. Fortunately, Shirley's a massage therapist, so Dolly got the full spa treatment on her arrival.
Shirley also noticed Dolly's wardrobe lacked certain necessities. She stitched up some lingerie for Dolly, in the form of square undies to fit Dolly's square bottom. This was to be only the first of several couture garments Dolly received on her trip. By the time she got to our place, she owned an evening gown, a corset, and several t-shirts, among other things.
Dolly's US Tour - Part One
Before she arrived in South Central Wisconsin, Dolly traveled along the Eastern Seaboard, through the South and up into the Great Lakes. Click on the links in the list below to read about Dolly's adventures and see the writers she visited.
- Dolly visits Maine and SPhilbrick
- Dolly visits Upstate New York and dlcass
- Dolly visits Allegheny College in Pennsylvania and PrettyEvil
- Dolly stays in Pennsylvania and visits Shari L.
- Dolly visits New Jersey and ReuseItAll
- Dolly visits the Jersey Shore and survivoryea
- Dolly visits Maryland and TomCom
- Dolly visits DC and David Sarokin
- Dolly visits Virginia and WriterGig
- Dolly visits North Carolina and Suzyhomeeconomy
- Dolly visits AJTyne
- Dolly visits Florida and Writenow
- Dolly visits Central Florida and vallain
- Dolly visits Alabama and Addie Protivnak, boatst
- Dolly visits Kentucky and Frischy
- Dolly visits Michigan and Showpup
- Dolly visits Western Michigan and jseven
Dolly Arrives in South Central Wisconsin
After 6 months visiting 17 writers in 12 states, Dolly arrived on our doorstep. We had been waiting with much anticipation and were delighted to welcome her into our home.
Dolly's creator, veryire, was my first online writing buddy so I considered it a special honor to be able to spend time with Dolly. Dolly arrived with a lot stuff!! In a later module, I'll show you a picture we took of Dolly with all the souvenirs that traveled with her.
Take Dolly to Work Day
Dolly came with me to work one day. I spend a lot of time in the training room, so she amused herself with the whiteboard while we were there.
Dolly, (meet) Madison (Wisconsin, that is)
The view from the office doesn't look like much in this picture. But, in the winter (when the trees are bare), if you lean way over, you can just see the Capitol Dome in downtown Madison.
Dolly Parton's Imagination Library - One of Dolly's Charities
- Imagination Library
"In 1996, Dolly Parton launched an exciting new effort, Dolly Parton's Imagination Library, to benefit the children of her home county in East Tennessee, USA. Dolly's vision was to foster a love of reading among her county's preschool children and th
Dolly in the Dells
On the weekend, we took Dolly to Wisconsin Dells, one of Wisconsin's best known tourist spots. The Dells area bills itself as the Waterpark Capital of the World. Personally, I think of it as the world's fiberglass capital, with its many waterslides and enormous sculptures and characters.
Pirate's Cove wasn't open for business when we were there, but Dolly spent some time with the official greeter. (And, yes, he is made of fiberglass.) Arrrrrgh!
The Dells Tour
We felt the waterparks would pale in comparison to Dolly's ocean beaches at home. We did take a driving tour along some of the Dells' most intriguing boulevards.
Bet you didn't know the Roman Coliseum was in Wisconsin Dells, did you?
Dolly Does Culver's
What would a trip to Wisconsin be with out a visit to Culver's, home of the Butter Burger? No, the burgers aren't made of butter (but good guess, since we're here in America's Dairyland). Wisconsin-based Culver's is famous for their frozen custard and attentive customer service.
Dolly is a natural model, isn't she? I think Culver's should hire her as official spokesdoll.
Dolly at Circus World Museum
Circus World is an outdoor museum on the grounds of the historical winter home of the Ringling Brothers Barnum and Bailey Circus, in Baraboo, Wisconsin. Fans of the film "Water for Elephants" might be interested to know Circus World loaned the film's producers several vintage circus wagons. After the wagons were returned, Circus World's owners decided to leave them painted as they were for the film. But all that happened after Dolly was here!
Dolly was curious to see what these flat kids were so interested in, through Circus World's fence.
While in the Dells, we'd hoped to get Dolly some authentic Minnetonka moccasins, but they didn't have her size. Her foot size seems to be somewhere between "souvenir key chain" and "newborn." Instead, Dolly picked out some pink hightops with plenty of bling.
We'd chosen a welcome gift for Dolly before her arrival, and she seemed to like her very own dolly. When we posted pictures of Dolly and her doll on eHow's forum, a long discussion ensued over what Dolly's doll should be named. In the end, a name was chosen that honored one of the charities Dolly's trip supported and the doll was named Parton. This inspired much humor over the phrase, "Dolly and her dolly, Parton."
Mark Sandman Music Project - One of Dolly's Charities
- Mark Sandman Music Project
"The Mark Sandman Music Project is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to bringing children and music together to foster recreational, educational, and artistic goals. The Project's after-school, evening and weekend programs will provide children
Souvenirs of Dolly's Travels
As I mentioned earlier, Dolly arrived with a lot of stuff! Here's a list of all the mementos Dolly had collected by the time she left our house:
Apparel and bling: yellow square butt panties; silver lame' evening gown; black "leather" corset (and pattern to make more); "Bubba Gump Shrimp Company, Bayou La Batre, AL" t-shirt; "Kentucky: Where Horses Fly" t-shirt; "20th Annual Labor Day Tournament Moorestown 2009" patch; dried lei; Cape May surfboard necklace; "groovy chick" bracelet; pink hi-top sneakers; pirate ship temporary tattoo. Personal effects: Toothbrush, Dolly's dolly. Collectible tacks: flag (sorry - don't know location); Kentucky Derby Festival 2010 Spring Fever Believer; Baltimore Maryland: U.S. Constitution; and "A" Gator. Ephemera: bookmarks from Ocracoke Lighthouse, Gumbo Limbo Nature Center in Boca Raton, Florida, and of Walter Anderson Art in Ocean Springs, MS; Michigan Lodging and Tourism directory; Grand Haven, MI, Musical Fountain Brochure; postcards from Maine, Rochester - NY, Cape May - NJ, Shenandoah River - VA, NC, FL, Bellingrath Garden and Home (2) - AL, Dauphin Island - AL, The Estuarium at Dauphin Island - AL, Bayou La Batre - AL, Churchill Downs - KY, WI, and Wisconsin Dells - WI; "A Note from Virginia;" Dolly stickers; Wisconsin Budweiser coaster. Lottery: eHow Dolly Sweepstakes lottery ticket. Key chains: eHow Dolly and "Washington D.C. United States of America." Luggage Tag: Providence Hospital Foundation's Festival of Flowers. Magnets: Winston Salem and Kentucky. Collectibles: Smashed penny form Baltimore, Maryland; seashell; "Love" plaque; St. Patrick's Day Irish Flag; collector's spoon from Virginia; Wisconsin beer bottle cap.
You've figured out, by now that Dolly's limo is the box she travels in, right? I'm sure she'd been through several "models" by the time she got to us, and the most recent one was looking pretty worn. So, we got a new "limo" to slip over the current box and decided to decorate the retired one. We printed out the profile pictures of her hosts and wrapped the limo in their portraits. A limo scrapbook!
All too soon, it was time to bid Dolly farewell. We carefully packed her belongings, imagining the surprise and delight of future hosts as they greeted Dolly. The next leg of Dolly's journey would be by automobile. We'd arranged to meet Sharon Meier halfway and drop Dolly off in person.
It was fun to meet a fellow eHower in the flesh! Sharon was sweet enough to bring a big bunch of daisies from her garden (and a copy of her eHow article on how to grow them). We must've been thinking alike because I brought her the product of my very first eHow article: a jar of cranberry pear sauce (with article). So nice to see Sharon, so sad to say good bye to Dolly.
Dolly's Adventures Continue
After she left our place, Dolly went on to visit 6 more writers in four more states, before culminating her tour at eHow headquarters in California. From there, it was back across the ocean to her home state of Hawaii.
- Dolly visits Sharon Meier in Southeastern Wisconsin
- Dolly visits kittycooks in Minnesota
- Dolly visits ChrissLJ in Missouri
- Dolly visits rickmac and Specs in Texas
- Dolly visits Alina Bradford and stays another few days in Texas
- Dolly visits nancycarol in Nevada
- Dolly visits the eHow staff in California
Dolly Gets a Facebook Page
- Where's Dolly?
Dolly's progress seemed to get a bit stalled, so her fans and hosts decided to launch a Facebook page to move her travels along.
Life After Dolly
Our house is a little emptier and a little quieter without our Dolly. But, we've lots of nice memories to fill our dreams!
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