In my Second Life wanderings, I sometimes receive recommendations of places to visit, which are always welcome. So when Sammi Borgin recently dropped me a line about Avedon Park, occupying most of the full region of Newfie Land, I set out to investigate.
Avedon Park is home to The Factory, a club located up in the sky, and a landscaped park down at ground level, which is both open to the public and a home to the creative team behind the region. There’s a lot to see and do here, with walks, water features, castles, a touch of steampunk, a photo studio /gallery and more.
Created by Aura Firehawk and Karma Avedon, the region is largely free to roam, but as noted above, do be aware that this is also their home, so do please take note of any privacy signs you find while exploring. Also, please keep in mind that the property in the south-east corner of the region, separated from the rest by tall mountains, is not a part of the park but an entirely separate private residence.
The arrival point, located towards the west side of the region offers a teleport system for getting around and to get to the club overhead, and an information board which will offer to open a link to the Avedon Park website when clicked. This provides general information on the park, including a history to the place, which introduces readers to James Wellington Avedon, “a noted entrepreneurial inventor and explorer” of the early 20th Century, credited with discovering the land, and Captain Charles T. Firehawk, “the noted WWI pilot and accomplished explorer”, Avedon’s partner. The website makes for an entertaining (and informative) read when exploring the region, and has some very nice photography within it.
Where you go following your arrival is entirely up to you; the teleport system makes reaching some parts of the park easier than when using pedal extremities, but I do urge you to wander and take your time on foot – there is much to see (and do), and a lot of little details which make the time taken in wandering more than worthwhile.
Within the area of the park containing the arrival point you’ll find the Avedon Gallery / studio, a private house boat, a tree house and two large bodies of water. A path wanders through the area, crossing a stone bridge into Firehawk Cove, an island on the north-west side of the region offering places to relax by the water or to dance in the shade of a gazebo and even the opportunity to try your hand at fencing with a friend or two on a pier at the water’s edge.
Just before the bridge to Firehawk Cove, the path branches, with one part of it leading you across two wooden bridges and a small islet to Firehawk Island. Here you can follow a wooded path to a small beach and the Sanctum Tower, which faces Sky Castle across a narrow neck of water.
Sky Castle itself is apparently available to rent as a venue for weddings – although you might have to get your feet wet in getting to it! The castle – one of Alex Bader’s stunning creations (as is much else to be found here), sits on its own island on the north-east of the region and offers a commanding view back across the water to the Sanctum Tower and across to the tall cliffs to the east, which have further walks at their feet and the Avedon Amazing Music Machine further up. The cliffs are reached via Fennux Park, home to a small colony of Fennux.
This is another region which has been put together with a wonderful eye for creativity and invention – the website accompanying it really is a must-read if one wishes to fully immerse oneself here, as it adds depth and colour to the park.
Windlight settings are supplied with the region, but as usual, I opted to play with my own in taking snaps, and the region is very photogenic in this respect, being suited to a wide range of windlight themes and settings, whether preset (viewer allowing) or your own.
I very much enjoyed my afternoon of wandering through the park, and loved all the little touches to be found – the deer drinking at the lakeside, the bird bath, the Amazing Music Machine and so on. For thosew who like a little activity, there is the aforemention fencing, opportunities to go swiming and various games to be found scattered across the park. Do make sure you have sounds enabled and speakers / headphones on when you visit, as the soundscape has also been put together with care.
All told, a recommended visit, and my thanks to Sammi for pointing Avedon Park out to me.