It doesn’t matter which road you take into Lompoc, this lovely town to which we have moved; you will be greeted with a sign that announces that it is the “City of Arts and Flowers.” Before we arrived, we found out in our research that Lompoc supplies more than half the world’s flower seeds to retailers and many of the cut flowers that florists across the country. The masthead of this blog is the first flower field that we saw blooming and we couldn’t wait to take a picture!
Although not really a flower, another nod to that part of Lompoc’s claim to fame is the bower of Italian Stone Pines that grace the main drag in Old Town Lompoc. These trees were originally planted by mistake in 1940 and are now valued at over 3 million dollars. It’s such a treat to drive through this canopy of greenery.
The “City of Flowers” we understood, but it wasn’t until we looked around a bit did we get the “Arts” part. From what I’ve read, Lompoc was looking for a way to bring tourism to their small town and in 1990, the first mural was completed. Emblazoned on the sides of buildings, tucked away in alleys, in some of the most unexpected places are murals. Lompoc officially has 40 murals in its inventory, but many privately created pieces are spread across town.
This mural is called Flora and Fauna. It was part of the “Mural in a Day” project in 2001. It was painted by a group of artists in, that’s right – one day!
Space is a recurring theme as that is an important part of Lompoc’s industry. Vandenberg AFB, the reason that we are here, falls under space command and is one of the area’s largest employers. The locals are proud to be a part of America’s space program and it shows in the murals.
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