Forestville: Life in 1899

It’s extremely cliché to say that “history comes alive” at Historic Forestville, a turn-of-the-century town tucked away in the confines of a state park in the bluffs southeast of Rochester, MN. But this village actually features outbuildings, machinery, and hundreds of other artifacts that were literally left preserved and unchanged when the place became a ghost town after the railroads came through and bypassed it in the late 1800’s.

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Where the Journey is the Destination: The Enchanted Highway

North Dakota has plenty of good things going for it. The oil boom has brought the Roughrider State back to the forefront recently.  But although it has been said that ND has no real “major” tourist attractions, it does have a stretch of road 30 miles long dotted with giant roadside gooders called “The Enchanted Highway.”  This thoroughfare between I-94 and Regent, ND is home to 7 scrap-metal sculptures and ends in the small town of Regent, where something even more interesting is being built.

The first attraction that beckons you off the interstate at Gladstone, ND, called “Geese in Flight,” is a 110-ft tall, 154-ft wide piece that is Guiness-certified as the World’s Largest Scrap Metal Sculpture. It’s an eye shape with geese portrayed as flying westward. Continue reading

Minnesota Vikings: Football and Beyond

As another Autumn sets in here in Minnesota, many football fans are tuning in each Sunday to watch the Minnesota Vikings and hoping they don’t blow it this year.  While most people think of the purple NFL team when they hear the term “Minnesota Vikings,” there is a rich and storied history here beyond the pads.

The “Viking” is a very emblematic mascot for Minnesota.   Tales of Vikings around here date back to the 1300’s and earlier. There’s the questionable Kensington Runestone yarn, the Hjemkomst Viking ship incident, and the Scandinavian/Norwegian/German history which is still very alive and present here today. Continue reading