Minnesota Wonders

Discovering the Treemendous Playground in St. Peter

Compared to those of my childhood, the playgrounds of today seriously blow me away. I could only have imagined such beautiful playgrounds in my dreams as a child. While the swing sets, teeter totters, and merry-go-rounds of the past were loads of fun, they can’t compete with some of the modern day playgrounds that blend art with imagination and fun. While spending a day in St. Peter a while back, the kids and I discovered one such incredible playground. The […]

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Take a ride on Minnesota’s State Bike Trails

Like a lot of kids growing up in the eighties, I didn’t wear a bike helmet. And I didn’t think much about it until I started riding through the city with my own children. I decided to invest in one for myself after having one too many close calls with the drivers on our roads today. Let’s face it; there’s a lot of distracted drivers out there! That’s why I have fallen in love with the bike trails of Minnesota. […]

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One “Giant” Minnesota Protest: Big Vic, the Voyageur

Note:  If you head to the far northern tip of Minnesota, you will find a couple of super cool giants.  I am dividing this story into two separate blog posts.  First up is Big Vic, the Voyageur, which can be found in the small town of Ranier.  In a couple weeks I’ll share the story of Smokey Bear, which stands a couple miles away in International Falls.    Let’s face it.  It’s been a crazy couple of weeks.  Donald Trump has […]

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Happy Veterans Day!

Thanks to all the veterans that have served our country and also to your families, who also sacrifice so much. We are so lucky to have such brave men and women in our country! I love how so many communities have taken the time to create veterans and war memorials, even in super small towns. The memorial below is found in Cleveland, Minnesota, located just east of St. Peter with a population just over 700 people. These spaces always provide […]

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The Murals of Faribault

In the town that I call home, one of my favorite things to see are the murals of Faribault. Bursting with color, the murals showcase some beautiful artwork and scenes from Faribault’s historic past, like this one of the bustling downtown in the 1950’s.   Murals began showing up in 2007.  Artists and others from the community came together and formed the Mural Society of Faribault, which aims to use public art to increase community spirit and promote tourism.  The first […]

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Alexandria’s “Big Ole”

  This week we head to Alexandria, home to the mysterious Runestone and the giant Viking, Big Ole. A great family vacation destination, Alexandria will keep you busy with its beautiful lakes, many museums, and outdoor fun. Standing 28 feet tall and weighing 8,000 pounds, the Viking “Big Ole” protects the city of Alexandria with his shield and sword. Built by artist Gordon Shumaker out of fiberglass, Big Ole represented Minnesota in 1965 as part of a display at the […]

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Bemidji’s Paul Bunyan and Babe

Perhaps the most famous sculptures in all of Minnesota, Paul Bunyan and Babe attract thousands of visitors every year to far northern Minnesota. Bemidji offers loads of family fun with opportunities to learn about science, history, culture, and more! In 1937, the city of Bemidji created the giant sculptures of Paul Bunyan and Babe for their winter carnival celebration. At 18 feet tall and weighing 2.5 tons, Paul stands on the shore of Lake Bemidji, which is said to be […]

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Olivia’s Giant Ear of Corn

This week we travel to southwestern Minnesota and visit the town of Olivia. The heart of agriculture country, Olivia pays tribute to one of Minnesota’s most cultivated crops: corn. In 1973, Olivia became known as the “Corn Capital of the Midwest.” To promote the idea, they constructed this monument to corn, which measures 25 feet tall and is made out of fiberglass.  Nine different seed research companies in the area employ many local people and create new varieties of corn. […]

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Big Moose in Moose Lake

This week I feature the city of Moose Lake in northeastern Minnesota. Known for its “Big Moose,” historic fire, and Lake Superior agates, this amazing small town will keep you busy with tons of fun and interesting attractions. Big Moose In 1989, three citizens of the town decided to honor their city by erecting a giant moose sculpture along the shores of Moose Lake. In 2002, the sculpture moved to its current location in front of the Moose Lake Area […]

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Blue Earth’s Green Giant

I love how small towns always surprise me. Just off Interstate 90 in far southern Minnesota, Blue Earth delivers affordable family fun for a day trip or weekend getaway. Blue Earth’s Green Giant Back in 1978, radio host Paul Hedberg interviewed people passing through Blue Earth on their summer vacations. At the end of the interview, he would give them a can of Green Giant vegetables as a thank-you gift. People would always ask him, “Where’s the Green Giant?” This […]

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