Thursday, July 16, 2009
The Van Patten House
The Van Patten House houses Katie Belle's restaurant. Originally, one had to be a resident of The Villages or a guest of a resident to dine at Katie Belle's. I'm not sure what happened (not enough business?), but that rule was relaxed and now all are welcome.
One visitor explained the Van Patten House this way (and it also helps one understand The Villages as a "Disneyland for adults"):
"Outside [of the Van Patten House], an historical marker explains the building's colorful past. 'Katie Belle Van Patten was the wife of a Jacksonville businessman, John Decker Van Patten, who, along with a number of other investors, built the luxurious hotel in 1851 ...'
"The plaque looks so authentic that I have to remind myself that I am standing on what was pastureland a mere decade ago. ..."
And so it goes. Make-believe. But ain't it fun?