You might ask why I would focus on “urban” as the theme for Sunday Stills this week. Most of you know I live in a rural area of Washington, having moved from a suburban area of Sacramento in 2020. While my images of urban are the focus, I’ll compare those to images of rural and suburban. Trust me, it was a challenge for me to find some good urban images.

Without city centers, there would be very little to draw populations to the areas. But as the model shows, changes shift concentrically outward as neighborhood areas evolve or devolve. The city center is prime real estate for businesses, while the outer rings suggest real estate prices rise as they progress toward the suburbs. Conversely, many folks flee to rural areas as they desire to reduce stress, retire, or seek a change in lifestyle.

The pandemic caused a major shift in lifestyle for many. When we lived in the RV park for two months from the end of January to mid-March in 2021, I was astounded at how many campers were living there. Like us, some were awaiting their homes to be built, others were there for temporary work, while others (including families with children) had sold their homes and bought RVs to live in. I’ve also seen it all within a few miles of where we live. Just a few blocks away, there are people living in old single-wide mobile homes, in tiny houses, or have parked their RVs in the woods and really living off the grid! How the latter get away with it is unknown to me.

Urban Views

Despite my living 30 miles from the city center of downtown Spokane, Washington, we visit frequently for family gatherings and events.

On March 10, I had shared that we attended the Broadway musical, Wicked, at the First Interstate Center for the Arts located in Downtown Spokane along the south bank of the Spokane River adjacent to the Spokane Convention Center. Being the second night of the performance, the Pavilion (built for the 1974 World’s Fair in Riverfront Park) was lit up in green.

Spokane Pavilion at Night
Celebrating Wicked at the Green-lit Pavilion

It was so nice to see the lobby of the First Interstate Center for the Arts and look up at the huge figures hanging from the ceiling. I doubt if we should see this in the ‘burbs or in our rural library!

Lobby First Interstate Arts Center Spokane
Figures hanging around in the First Interstate Arts lobby

The featured image shows a filtered view of the Convention Center area. Spokane has one of the most beautiful downtowns on the West Coast. Ringed with mountains covered in evergreens, the streets boast brick buildings and both modern and historical architecture. The mighty Spokane River flows through the center of downtown where you will find Riverfront Park. Spokane is known nationally for its tech and healthcare industries.

Spring in Downtown Spokane

Spokane is also home to the country’s largest urban waterfall. Spring snowmelt is underway!

“Moving to Spokane will put you in the second-largest city in Washington state and also in a charming community that is a perfect mix of urban vibes and natural beauty.” ~ Cross Country Moving Company

If you follow the March Madness NCAA College Basketball playoffs, you may have heard of Gonzaga University which is situated just north of downtown. Gonzaga men’s team was ranked #1 in the tournament but lost to 4th seed Arkansas Razorbacks in the Sweet 16.

With Gonzaga’s notoriety the last two years, and other economic factors, the Spokane/Coeur D’Alene areas are now high on the list of places to move, causing a hot housing market. Many are lucky to find homes for rent and for sale and prices have skyrocketed. Spokane law enforcement agencies are struggling to hire more sheriffs because once hired, they can’t find housing nearby.

CLoudy day Downtown Spokane
Downtown apartment buildings and hotels near Riverfront Park’s Pavilion

At a recent doctor’s appointment last week, I caught a touch of spring in the air while admiring the urban architecture.

Downtown Spokane architecture

That is the URBAN Spokane I love. Sometimes I can’t believe that within less than 30 miles from downtown Spokane, I am in the land of rural living.

Rural Mountain road
Early spring on this rural mountain road

Next, I will share views of various marinas from my gallery that depict urban, suburban, and rural marinas.

Urban Marinas

I have always loved the views of the marinas in the San Diego harbors as you see below.

Suburban Marinas

As I scrolled through my images, I found suburban marinas as well.

Rural Marinas

It seems more likely to find marinas in rural areas rather than in suburban areas. People love boating and being on the water, so marinas are pretty much anywhere.

Poppies bloom at the Sherman Island Marina (Sacramento delta). I sure miss seeing California poppies!


“The promise of spring’s arrival is enough to get anyone through the bitter winter!” ― Jen Selinsky

Just for fun, I had to throw this old urban image in, taken years ago in San Francisco, since the street bears my last name.

Street Name in San Francisco's China Town

Photo Challenges this Week

Each week I am inspired by my fellow bloggers’ photo challenges. I find it fun to incorporate these into my Sunday Stills weekly themes.

Sunday Stills Photo Challenge Reminders

Sunday Stills weekly challenge is easy to join. You have all week to share and link your post.

  • Remember to title your blog post a little differently than mine.
  • Please create a new post for the theme or link a recent one.
  • Entries for this theme can be posted all week.
  • Tag your post “Sunday Stills.”
  • Don’t forget to create a pingback to this post so that other participants can read your post.
  • I also recommend adding your post’s URL into the comments.

This Week’s Featured Bloggers

Sunday Stills is a wonderful community of bloggers and photographers who desire to connect with one another. Below are this week’s links from bloggers who shared their urban-inspired photos. I edit these all week as new links are added.


Due to travel, I will take a two-week break from Sunday Stills on April 3rd and 10th. We are driving with the trailer to Leavenworth, WA, and camping in a nearby KOA campground. My experience tells me that wi-fi can be spotty at best. You can bet there will be a new crop of photos to share. Next time we meet it will be for the monthly color challenge on April 17.

Please check out my Sunday Stills page for details.

I’m excited to see how you will interpret “urban” this week. Thank you to everyone who linked to daylight in black and white last week.


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106 thoughts on “Sunday Stills: An #Urban Focus

  1. Nice collection of urban images. I should head back to Spokane for a more in-depth experience than our overnight stay last year.

    I’m not much for “living off the grid.” My idea of “roughing it” is no refrigerator in the hotel room.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I like that top photo, Terri. It has a very urban feel. Also love the images of the river. It must be nice having that running through downtown. Can you walk a long the banks much? Sorry to hear that house prices have gone up so much, but I guess that’s the same pretty much everywhere this last year or two.
    Have fun in Bavaria – a very different urban experience! Here’s my little slice of urban life:

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Graham. That was another painnted image that made it look like snow–which a few weeks ago probably was very realistic looking! In Riverfront Park, there are great walking areas that are fenced plus there is the Skyway. Of course the Spokane River makes a strange northward turn out to our area where there are endless trails along the river and where it becomes Lake Spokane, before turning south again to the Columbia. Whenever we get visitors, we try to take them to downtown. Hans had been to Leavenworth before–I’m sure I will have a ton of new pics!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, Terri,
    Your downtown waterfall reminded me of an image I have from a trip to Minneapolis a few years ago. The headwaters of the Mississippi River flow over St. Anthony Falls. It makes a nice urban setting and the pedestrian bridge is nice as well. Enjoy your camping trip. We’re camping in NC next week…Helen insisted! Joe

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Who doesn’t love a river and falls in an urban setting, Joe? Lovely shot you shared! Enjoy your camping trip–it will be just what you need. I’m excited (really) to get my neglected trailer cleaned up. After living in it for 2 months last year, Hans ended up using it for a garage until the pole barn was built. Glad it’s almost ready for travel again!


  4. I have to get up to Spokane at some point, Terri. It sounds like a wonderful city with beautiful settings and lots to do. I love your photos and what you did with them. You’re so talented! Enjoy the spring weather, that awesome waterfall, and all the arts. Have a wonderful week.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Diana! When I first saw the downtown area of Spokane in 2010, then where my in-laws live in Dishman hills, I asked my hubby why we are not living here? And now we are. The PNW and Inland NW as they call our area, is truly unique and spectacular–at least for this mountain girl. You always have a place to stay with us–a nice guest room and bathroom–don’t be shy, if you get the urge!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I am so grateful to have had the chance to visit Spokane for a car club event several years ago. It was such a beautiful city in a magical setting. We had the Concours D’Elegance (car show) on the grassy hillside of Riverfront Park… just beautiful. One of these days, I will definitely be back to enjoy it some more.


    1. I remember you mentioning a visit to the Lilac City as they call Spokane, Janis! I’m still learning, too. Riverfront Park is really quite amazing and has plenty of good accessible parking areas that aren’t too expensive. I hope you can visit some day and please feel free to stay with us!


  6. This is a hard topic for you Terri without resorting back to Sacramento, and you did it! Wow! I’ve been thinking about how I am going to do my post as well. Most of my pictures focus on either trips to downtowns, which I have shown or tiny Woodlake or things I’m saving for PPAC in Prescott or Scottsdale. I’m going to have to go photo shooting, I think. I like the filters and effects you’ve added to many of your pictures that make them look like artwork rather than photos. Very interesting post comparing urban to rural, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Marsha! When I went back into just my WP media files, I found a lot more urban images than I remember. It seemed like a great theme, one I hadn’t tackled before. I really love the Painnt effect filters. A couple of other bloggers use them too. I personally would love to see more photos of Scottsdale even though I’ve been there a few times. Glad you enjoyed the post 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  7. As I too live in the country I was wondering what to do for this week’s theme Terri but you’ve managed to create a great post showing both rural and urban settings. I love the filters on the photos too. All that water in Spokane looks amazing! I haven’t done an actual post but will try to share the bright lights of our (one) main street called The Parade here in downtown Tumbarumba

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Like me Terri, you live in a quiet and beautiful place, yet have easy access to urban life whenever you want it. Personally I think it’s the best of both worlds! Also, having boating and water close at-hand makes for ideal lifestyle IMHO. So happy to see you settled into your new life and enjoying all that it has to offer. Enjoy your break and we’ll see you when you return. Terrific and fun post!


    1. Thank you so much, Tina! I totally agree. I love looking out every window in my home and seeing pine trees, and gorgeous sunsets from my kitchen window. Long drives are not boring–always something to see. I’m lookin forward to a little break and will be back loaded up with new photos!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m with you on living somewhere quiet and beautiful, yet is also not far from city life, Terri. Having lived and worked in London for 27 years, I was ready for a quieter life, but I also put that down to my age. My days of going out every night were long behind me, so moving to the coast was perfect. Fortunately, where we live now, it is only a 5 min walk to the beach, but we can also drive to the city centre of Swansea in 15 minutes. If I tell you that in the last six years of living here, I’ve only visited the city centre five times, it will tell you where I prefer to be.

    I’m sharing two photos this week, as I could not decide between them. They are two of my favourite cities outside of the UK. The clues are there as to where they are.

    Have a great trip, and enjoy your time away.


    1. Wow, what great shots you shared, Hugh! I can see Radio City so that must be NYC. I opened the other image and see a Casino…not Lake Tahoe, so Las Vegas? I’ve never seen a body of water like that…it looks like the desert behind Caesars? Do tell! I agree that there is a time when we desire quiet days and nights. We are living the dream, Hugh!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thanks, Terri. Correct on both accounts.

        Las Vegas is such a different city. I loved that they had urban scenes inside urban buildings (buildings within buildings). One of the hotels had Venice inside it. You could even take a canal ride. The buildings were huge. I also liked the hotel that was built like a Pyramid. I also rode a massive rollercoaster with my niece outside the New York hotel in Las Vegas. I’d never heard such shocking words coming from her as we did the ride.


      2. Caesar’s LV is quite the experience as you say, Hugh. I’ve been inside and wandered the hallways watching the “sky” change colors. We stayed at the Venetian years ago where you describe the canal rides. Those casinos do everything they can to create artificial beauty in order to keep us inside and spending.

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Hi Terri, I managed to find quite a few urban rainscapes. I need to take some video production lessons. I used the one that comes with the computer and it cut all my individual videos short. Oh well, shorter is good. Have a great week. Get urbanized and we can talk soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. I’m so glad you’re enjoying your new home in Washington, and also your new urban center, Spokane! Your pictures are wonderful and inviting! 🙂 I was born and raised in Seattle, but I’ve only been to Spokane a couple times – I mean when we actually stopped and stayed awhile. We’ve been by on I-90 to somewhere else cross-country MANY times! But the last time we actually stopped, I really enjoyed the downtown area where the world fair was and the river flowing through. It’s worth another visit! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Hey
    I hope your weeks off are great and enjoyed this urban take on the Sunday stills challenge
    The old city photo of Webster street was cool!
    And nice flow to the city theme and of course some orange flowers near rise rocks and cool backdrop was a great addition

    Wishing you a nice week ahead

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Always a delight to see your photos and your impressions of your daily life. Spokane is such a unique city. I imagine its taken a bit, and this will be your first year to really feel at home, with the possibility to explore as you should. So much to do there.

    My favorite photos was of the poppies. And also Shelter Island. For some reason I fell in love with that little spit of land and you sure captured it will with the marina photo. Donna

    Liked by 1 person

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