A Cheerleader Along The American River Parkway

Real Estate Agent with GreatWest Realty DRE# 00827565

One of the more important things I’ve experienced since beginning to access The American River Parkway on my bicycle these past couple months, is that no two rides are alike.  There is always some new experience, which defines the ride from the rest.  It may be a whiff of seasonal flora in bloom, or the sound of the river quickly rushing from recent rains.  It could be a wisp of cool air sent by a late autumn breeze.  And always, there is some form of wild life, interacting with nature that teases.

Soon after my first ride along The Parkway, I came upon a pretty little rest area.  It had grassy areas, picnic tables and a nice view.  It’s only accessible by The Parkway, and is located about ½ mile or so from the Sunrise Bridge area. 

I quickly noticed a guy sitting on a bench next to the path, with a cowbell.  He rang the bell as I rode by.  In subsequent trips along this stretch of The Parkway, he was often seated at the same spot, while talking to a few cyclists, or feeding the squirrels; but nearly always cheering on those riding or jogging by.



Today, when I reached this vicinity, it was time to take a needed break, get a drink of water, and catch my breath.  But, mainly, I was curious about who this individual actually is.

Garland began riding The Parkway about 18 years ago.  He thought, like I did, he’d probably quickly become bored.  He didn’t!  I suspect The Parkway is about as much home to him as most any place else.  He’s on a first name basis with the squirrels.  The one pictured eating from his hand, is Bob.  Bob apparently got his name because he has no tail.  However, Garland explained that Bob is actually a girl, and has a family.  Garland is also friends with several wild turkeys, and deer that pay him no mind, as he sits in his usual place along The Parkway.  If you ever get to about mile 18.5 on The American River Parkway, be sure to wave to Garland, and say, “Hi.”




Other Photoblogs I’ve written about The American River Parkway can be accessed as follows:



Re-Blogged 2 times:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Roy Kelley 11/18/2012 08:05 PM
  2. Toni Weidman 11/18/2012 09:24 PM
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myrl jeffcoat

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Marney Kirk
Cummings & Co. Realtors - Towson, MD
Towson, Maryland Real Estate

Myrl, I like the sound of this Garland fellow. How neat that he communes with the animals and cheers on riders!

Nov 18, 2012 10:00 PM #8
. 4Terra Land Brokers .. 828-776-0779 Asheville NC
What's Most Important to YOU? Call(828)-776-0779

Dear Myrl~

I've been pretty much "on hold" with a sprained back and so have missed any number of posts. I am so happy that I got to be here today to read your story. I really appreciate the photos and the "feeling" THANK YOU!

Nov 18, 2012 10:28 PM #9
. 4Terra Land Brokers .. 828-776-0779 Asheville NC
What's Most Important to YOU? Call(828)-776-0779

PS. I have to send this along to my god daughter who is a wildlife rescuer-squirrels- she will LOVE this story. TWEET!

Nov 18, 2012 10:30 PM #10
Steve and Jan Bachman
RE/MAX Gateway, Reston, Herndon, Ashburn, Sterling, Fairfax - Herndon, VA
Realtors - Northern Virginia

Meryl,  You have a talent to connect the right words with fine photos to make your stories have the human impact. You are unique not only here on AR but in the other photo places I inhabit.

Garland has awesome hair. I am thinking about going long with a tail. It may help me look more like the artist I strive to become.

Nov 18, 2012 11:21 PM #11
Myrl Jeffcoat
GreatWest Realty - Sacramento, CA
Greater Sacramento Real Estate Agent

Marney - It is interesting how some people find the simplest of things to enrich the lives of themselves and others.

JaneAnne - I'm glad you enjoyed the story.  I hope your god-daughter finds the story of interest.

Steve and Jan - You always find warm and kind words to say in your comments.  I'm impressed with Garland's hair too. I like the style.  It's so quintessentially, "Californian."

Nov 18, 2012 11:46 PM #12
Than Maynard
Coldwell Banker Heart of Oklahoma - Purcell, OK
Broker - Licensed to List & Sell - 405-990-8862

I like Bob's name, very fitting.

Nice to take the time to find out more about him. Never know what you will find out.

Nov 19, 2012 12:43 AM #13
Ron and Alexandra Seigel
Napa Consultants - Carpinteria, CA
Luxury Real Estate Branding, Marketing & Strategy

Oh Myrl,

What a delightful story accompanied by delightful photos.  I love your description of Garland.  If I was riding alongside, I would look forward to seeing him.  We all thrive on encouragement, it is nice when someone appoints themselves as chief Encourager.  A

Nov 19, 2012 01:03 AM #14
Yolanda Cordova-Gilbert
Richmond, TX


          Thank you for sharing your experiences on the parkway I wsh I could smell the smell of the crisp autumn air! I hope you are getting ready for Turkey Day!

Nov 19, 2012 07:16 AM #15
Michael A. Caruso
Surterre Properties - Laguna Niguel, CA

Myrl, Thanks for sharing your adventure stories and photos! I'm glad to that you are still enjoying the bike rides. Garland, seems to be living the life, too...Staying active, enjoying nature and meeting new people. Have a wonderful week!

Nov 19, 2012 08:24 AM #16
Patricia Kennedy
RLAH Real Estate - Washington, DC
Home in the Capital

Myrl, does Garland ever hear anything from Nutsy?  Garland is a cutie!

Nov 19, 2012 11:20 AM #17
Kwee Huset
Kwee Huset Realty - Venice, FL
Venice Florida Homes For Sale

Hi Myrl, your post reminds me of  my mother in law, she liked to feel those wild animals around her garden.        

Nov 19, 2012 11:41 AM #18
DeeDee Riley
Lyon Real Estate - El Dorado Hills CA - El Dorado Hills, CA
Realtor - El Dorado Hills & the Surrounding Areas

Great story, Myrl!  Good for you that you get out there on a regular basis!  Hope to see you at the Sac Meet-up.

Happy Thanksgiving!  

Nov 19, 2012 01:01 PM #19
Jennifer Fivelsdal
JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571 - Rhinebeck, NY
Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection

Myrl nature can bring us such pleasure, I can see why Garland is also hooked.  So true even if you go down the same path frequently there is always something new to discover.

Keep the stories coming.

Nov 19, 2012 03:34 PM #20
Karen Kruschka
RE/MAX Executives - Woodbridge, VA
- "My Experience Isn't Expensive - It's PRICELESS"

Myrl  P;ease tell us when your photo storybook is published - Arthur and I also dropped in to wish you and yor family a very Happy Thanksgiving

Nov 20, 2012 06:02 AM #21
Barbara-Jo Roberts Berberi, MA, PSA, TRC - Greater Clearwater Florida Residential Real Estate Professional
Charles Rutenberg Realty - Clearwater, FL
Palm Harbor, Dunedin, Clearwater, Safety Harbor

Myrl - Wishing you and your entire family a wonderful Thanksgiving Holiday!!!

Nov 20, 2012 06:52 AM #22
Bruce Walter
Keller Williams Realty Lafayette/West Lafayette, Indiana - West Lafayette, IN

Myrl, this is a great story and your opening paragraph is something every author could hope to aspire to, or perhaps envy!

That is amazing that Garland has continued his riding along the American River Parkway for 18 years, but after looking at your pictures it is easy to see why!

Have a blessed Thanksgiving with all your family, Myrl!!!

Nov 20, 2012 11:01 PM #23
Steve Hoffacker
Steve Hoffacker LLC - West Palm Beach, FL
Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor


Nice human interest story and great shots to go along with it. :)


Nov 21, 2012 01:43 PM #24
Steve Hoffacker
Steve Hoffacker LLC - West Palm Beach, FL
Certified Aging In Place Specialist-Instructor


Congratulations. This post is now featured on "Speechless Sundays." :)


Nov 23, 2012 02:18 PM #25
Patricia Feager, MBA, CRS, GRI,MRP
Selling Homes Changing Lives


I'm beginning to see that nothing was coincidental - from the moment you thought about getting a bike, until you hit the trails and started making connections with everything that came into your path of interest. Garland is no exception. The fact that you got off your bike and didn't just drive by without getting more information, tells me you are definitely in the people business and you are a sharp connector!

Something tells me we'll be hearing more about Garland and more people you meet along the bike trails.

You and your stories always make me happy. And by the way, the tail-less squirrel can't be just a coincidence either, now can it?

Nov 25, 2012 01:31 PM #26
Rebecca Gaujot, Realtor®
Vision Quest Realty - Lewisburg, WV
Lewisburg WV, the go to agent for all real estate

Hi Myrl, I love the photos and love to watch squirrels.  We've been planning to get bikes for 2 years and still don't have them....this post makes me want to go out and get a bike...will have to wait until spring now...just too darn cold for bike riding :)

Nov 26, 2012 10:02 AM #27
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Myrl Jeffcoat

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