A Travellerspoint blog

DAY 11, Saturday, 11 May MINNEAPOLIS TO PIERRE, SOUTH DAKOTA

Heading through the Sioux Indian Nation to Pierre, Capital of South Dakota

Today we had a long drive of 727km starting from Minneapolis through the rich farmlands of South Dakota, homeland of the Sioux Indian Nation.
South Dakota is a big state with a small population of only 760 000 people. the main industries are agricultural with corn, wheat, corn, alfalfa, corn, dairy and beef grazing and corn.
Main Street St James

Main Street St James

Main Street, Mitchell, South Dakota

Main Street, Mitchell, South Dakota


Wind Farm South Dakota

Wind Farm South Dakota

We stopped in Mitchell to see the CORN PALACE, a remarkable Moorish-style building where the interior and exterior are covered with designs of corns outlined with grasses and grain. There have been three Corn Palaces since 1871. It costs approx $130 000 a year to split corn cobs etc and nail them to the building in changing murals from year to year.
The Corn Palace, Mitchell, South Dakota

The Corn Palace, Mitchell, South Dakota

The Corn Palace, Mitchell, South Dakota

The Corn Palace, Mitchell, South Dakota

The First Corn Palace

The First Corn Palace

The Second Corn Palace, Mitchell

The Second Corn Palace, Mitchell

Display in The Corn Palace - all things made from corn

Display in The Corn Palace - all things made from corn

Philip and Julie waiting for the Corn

Philip and Julie waiting for the Corn

Later on, we drove through the Crow Creek Indian Reservation and along the mighty Missouri River.
Missouri River, South Dakota

Missouri River, South Dakota

Crow Creek reservation centre

Crow Creek reservation centre

The Lewis and Clark Expedition, also known as the Corps of Discovery Expedition was the first American expedition to cross what is now the western portion of the United States, departing from St. Louis on the Mississippi River making their way westward through the continental divide to the Pacific coast.
The expedition took place shortly after the Louisiana Purchase in 1803, was commissioned by President Thomas Jefferson and consisted of a select group of U.S. Army volunteers under the command of Captain Meriwether Lewis and his close friend Second Lieutenant William Clark. The duration of their perilous journey lasted from May 1804 to September 1806. The primary objective was to explore and map the newly acquired territory and, by following the Missouri river northwest to see if it was connected or came close enough to the Columbia river, which flowed on to the Pacific Ocean. During this exploration Lewis and Clark aimed to find a practical route across the Western half of the continent, and in doing so, to establish an American presence in this territory thus securing it before Britain and other European powers tried to claim it.
Here is where they camped at Chamberlain on the Missouri River.
Lewis and Clark Memorial Bridge at Chamberlain

Lewis and Clark Memorial Bridge at Chamberlain

Lewis and Clark Memorial Bridge on the Missouri River at Chamberlain

Lewis and Clark Memorial Bridge on the Missouri River at Chamberlain

Sioux Nation Memorial

Sioux Nation Memorial

Purple Heart Memorial Highway crosses 50 states to commemorate Badge of Military Merit struck by Washington in 1782

Purple Heart Memorial Highway crosses 50 states to commemorate Badge of Military Merit struck by Washington in 1782


We had our accommodation at Pierre, the state capital of South Dakota. Tomorrow we are going to the Badlands of South Dakota.

Posted by Kangatraveller 17:02 Comments (0)

DAY 10, Friday,, MINNEAPOLIS & EXCURSION TO MALL OF AMERICA

A tour of The Twin Cities -Minneapolis and St Paul's then Mall of America

Today we had a very late start with a tour of the cities starting at 9.00am.

Minneapolis, nicknamed "City of Lakes" and the "Mill City," is the county seat of Hennepin County, the largest city in the state of Minnesota, and the 48th largest in the United States. Its name is attributed to the city's first schoolteacher, who combined mni, a Dakota Sioux word for water, and polis, the Greek word for city.

As of 2011, the estimated population of the city of Minneapolis is 387,753. Minneapolis lies on both banks of the Mississippi River, just north of the river's confluence with the Minnesota River, and adjoins Saint Paul, the state's capital. Known as the Twin Cities, Minneapolis–Saint Paul is the 16th-largest metropolitan area in the U.S., with the area containing approximately 3.3 million residents.
Mississippi River in Minneapolis with St Paul Falls - the only waterfalls on the Mississippi River

Mississippi River in Minneapolis with St Paul Falls - the only waterfalls on the Mississippi River

Mississippi River in Minneapolis view from University of Minneapolis

Mississippi River in Minneapolis view from University of Minneapolis

Mississippi River in Minneapolis

Mississippi River in Minneapolis

The city is abundantly rich in water, with twenty lakes and wetlands, the Mississippi River, creeks and waterfalls, many connected by parkways in the Chain of Lakes and the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway. Among cities of similar densities, Minneapolis has the most dedicated parkland. It was once the world's flour milling capital and a hub for timber, and today is the primary business center between Chicago and Seattle, with Minneapolis proper containing the fifth highest concentration of Fortune 500 companies.

The park Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is an 11 acre (45,000 m²) park in Minneapolis, Minnesota, in the United States. It is located near the Walker Art Center, which operates it in coordination with the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. It is one of the largest urban sculpture gardens in the country, with 40 permanent art installations and several other temporary pieces that are moved in and out periodically.

The centerpiece of the garden is the Spoonbridge and Cherry (1985–1988) water sculpture designed by husband and wife Claes Oldenburg and Coosje van Bruggen.
Minneapolis Sculpture Garden with Spoonbridge and Cherry

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden with Spoonbridge and Cherry

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden with Spoonbridge and Cherry

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden with Spoonbridge and Cherry

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden with Spoonbridge and Cherry on Julie's head

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden with Spoonbridge and Cherry on Julie's head

Minneapolis  Sculpture Garden

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden Goddess with Golden Thighs sculpture - some sculpture is hard to interpret

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden Goddess with Golden Thighs sculpture - some sculpture is hard to interpret

Sculpture Garden Junge frau (Young Woman) 1926 sculpture with two young girls

Sculpture Garden Junge frau (Young Woman) 1926 sculpture with two young girls


Minneapolis Sculpture Garden stone seats with sayings

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden stone seats with sayings

Our next stop was St Paul's Church. A lumber millionaire offered the church a quarter of a million to build a little church. The Archbishop turned it down and went on to build this massive church across the road from the millionaire's house and dwarfed what was previously the largest mansion in town.
St Paul's Church Minneapolis

St Paul's Church Minneapolis

St Paul's Church Minneapolis

St Paul's Church Minneapolis

St Paul's Church Minneapolis

St Paul's Church Minneapolis

St Paul's Church Minneapolis - take out is available everywhere in the US

St Paul's Church Minneapolis - take out is available everywhere in the US


St Paul's Church Minneapolis internal doors

St Paul's Church Minneapolis internal doors


James J Hill House

James J Hill House

James J Hill House - Lumber millionaire house built in 1891

James J Hill House - Lumber millionaire house built in 1891

Our next stop was to see the Capitol Building in Minneapolis. Across the road from it was a park honouring one of their favourite sons, Vice President Hubert H Humphrey who was VP to LBJ.
Vice President Hubert H Humphrey statue

Vice President Hubert H Humphrey statue

Vice President Hubert H Humphrey statue

Vice President Hubert H Humphrey statue

School buses at  The Capitol, Minneapolis

School buses at The Capitol, Minneapolis


The Capitol, Minneapolis

The Capitol, Minneapolis

In the afternoon, we headed out to the fabulous MALL OF AMERICA, the largest shopping mall in the United States, featuring more than 400 specialty
stores as well as several large retailers.
Mall of America lego figures

Mall of America lego figures

Mall of America lego figures

Mall of America lego figures

Mall of America lego figures

Mall of America lego figures

Posted by Kangatraveller 15:52 Comments (0)

DAY 9, Thursday 9 May CHICAGO - WISCONSIN DELLS &MINNEAPOLIS

Enter Wisconsin with a leisurely break in pretty Wisconsin Dells.

This morning we left at 7.30 am. A very long day of travel through showers throughout the day. We travelled 656km from Chicago to Minneapolis.

We enjoyed a break at the Wisconsin Dells - a popular spot with photographers. We enjoyed a boat trip in a unique amphibious vehicle. The driver had a very sharp sense of humour. At one stage we entered the water in the vehicle in a large dam. he asked us to look at a house behind us. He said the house had nothing to do with the tour but when people asked us what we saw we could say that we looked out through the rear of a duck.

DUKW Rides on the Wisconsin Dells

DUKW Rides on the Wisconsin Dells

Ex Army DUKWs 1942 - there is one just ahead of us

Ex Army DUKWs 1942 - there is one just ahead of us

Potsdam Sandstone -- only found in three other places in the world

Potsdam Sandstone -- only found in three other places in the world

The girls on the DUKW

The girls on the DUKW

Hog Rock on the is Wisconsin River

Hog Rock on the is Wisconsin River

Wildlife along the trails

Wildlife along the trails

This was a very picturesque area of Wisconsin. Farming is the major industry with dairy being of particular importance.

Next, Minneapolis - the "Land of 10 000 Lakes." It was a cool night tonight. A week ago they had 10 inches of snow here.

Posted by Kangatraveller 18:52 Comments (0)

DAY 8, Wednesday 8 May CHICAGO

It really is my kind of town

Yesterday, we drove from Detroit in the State of Michigan through the southern part of Indiana and arrived (after adjusting our watches to an hour behind for Central Time) at Chicago. We had an orientation tour around Chicago. What a beautiful place with miles of shoreline kept for parks and public beaches around the shoreline. This place really is an architectural marvel with many famous architects in past years from Frank Lloyd Wright, Daniel Burnham (architect of Union Station in Washington DC) and Frank Gehry.

The architecture of Chicago has influenced and reflected the history of American architecture. The city of Chicago, Illinois features prominent buildings in a variety of styles by many important architects. Since most buildings within the downtown area were destroyed (the most famous exception being the Water Tower) by the Great Chicago Fire in 1871, Chicago buildings are noted for their originality rather than their antiquity.

Burnham Bay features many notable buildings from Soldier Field Stadium, the Shedd Aquarium, Planetarium and fabulous views of the skyline.
View from Burnham Bay

View from Burnham Bay

View of skyline from Burnham Bay

View of skyline from Burnham Bay

Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) tallest building currently in US

Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) tallest building currently in US

The Shedd Aquarium -one of the oldest public aquariums in the world

The Shedd Aquarium -one of the oldest public aquariums in the world

This morning we had free time to wander around our part of the city called South Loop and Loop. here are some pictures from around here.
The Flamingo sculpture - Dearborn Street Chicago

The Flamingo sculpture - Dearborn Street Chicago

Adams Avenue, street scene -tulips in flower everywhere

Adams Avenue, street scene -tulips in flower everywhere

Chicago Art Gallery -the lions speak (apparently) when a virgin walks past

Chicago Art Gallery -the lions speak (apparently) when a virgin walks past

Two streets away from our hotel is the start of Route 66.
Dearborn Street, Chicago, the start of the famed Route 66

Dearborn Street, Chicago, the start of the famed Route 66

The start of Route 66 -Chicago to Los Angeles

The start of Route 66 -Chicago to Los Angeles


Jean-Pierre Baptiste DuSable -founder of Chicago-Carribean African who set up a trading post on the Chicago River

Jean-Pierre Baptiste DuSable -founder of Chicago-Carribean African who set up a trading post on the Chicago River

The Water Tower Buildings -one of the few buildings that survived the disastrous fire of 1871 that destroyed much of Chicago

The Water Tower Buildings -one of the few buildings that survived the disastrous fire of 1871 that destroyed much of Chicago

We signed up for the cruise on Lake Michigan and the Chicago River. The Chicago River used to run into the lake but they built a canal and deepened the river so it now flows out of the lake and down to the Mississippi River and down out to the Gulf.

Cruise along the Chicago River

Cruise along the Chicago River


The Wrigley Building (think gum)

The Wrigley Building (think gum)


Chicago Tribune Building

Chicago Tribune Building

Chicago Tribune Building

Chicago Tribune Building

The Tribune Building has small pieces of. Famous buildings set into the blockwork

The Tribune Building has small pieces of. Famous buildings set into the blockwork

One of the 37 bridges across the Chicago River

One of the 37 bridges across the Chicago River

Architectural masterpieces

Architectural masterpieces

Merchandise Market Building -so large it has its own zip code in 1930

Merchandise Market Building -so large it has its own zip code in 1930

Navy Pier Chicago

Navy Pier Chicago

Willis Tower formerly the Sears Tower -1730 feet and 104 floors -highest building in Western Hemisphere

Willis Tower formerly the Sears Tower -1730 feet and 104 floors -highest building in Western Hemisphere

At night we had a delicious dinner at Carson's and then visited the Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower).
Dinner at Carson's

Dinner at Carson's

Sky Deck at ground level, Willis Tower

Sky Deck at ground level, Willis Tower

View to East from Willis Tower

View to East from Willis Tower

View from Willis Tower

View from Willis Tower

View from Willis Tower showing glass floor of Sky Deck

View from Willis Tower showing glass floor of Sky Deck

Julie standing on the Sky Deck 103 floors up -Willis Tower

Julie standing on the Sky Deck 103 floors up -Willis Tower


Philip, Julie, David and Colleen on the Sky Deck 103 Floor Willis Tower

Philip, Julie, David and Colleen on the Sky Deck 103 Floor Willis Tower


It is now 11.30pm and we have a 6.30am start in the morning with a long drive 656km from Chicago to Minneapolis.

Posted by Kangatraveller 21:24 Comments (0)

Day 7, Tuesday, May 7 DEARBORN to CHICAGO

From Henry Ford Museum to Chicago, America's third-largest city

What a luxury to have a sleep in. We had to have our bags ready for collection at 8.00am rather than the 6.30 am usual time. We stayed in a suburb of Detroit. Detroit is known for automobiles. And Motown - the music from Motor Town - Detroit. The designer of Mew York's Central Park (Frederick Law Olmstead) also devised the landscape of Detroit's island gem called Belle Isle.

The Henry Ford (also known as the Henry Ford Museum and Greenfield Village, and more formally as the Edison Institute) is a large indoor and outdoor history museum complex and a National Historic Landmark in the Metro Detroit suburb of Dearborn, Michigan, USA. Named for its founder, the noted automobile industrialist Henry Ford, and based on his desire to preserve items of historical significance and portray the Industrial Revolution, the property houses a vast array of famous homes, machinery, exhibits, and Americana. The collection contains many rare exhibits including John F. Kennedy's presidential limousine, Abraham Lincoln's chair from Ford's Theatre, Thomas Edison's laboratory, the Wright Brothers' bicycle shop, and the Rosa Parks bus.

Henry Ford said of his museum:
I am collecting the history of our people as written into things their hands made and used.... When we are through, we shall have reproduced American life as lived, and that, I think, is the best way of preserving at least a part of our history and tradition...

The museum features an IMAX Theater, which shows scientific, natural, or historical documentaries; as well as major feature films.
A model of the nuclear-powered Ford Nucleon automobile
An Oscar Mayer Wienermobile
The 1961 Lincoln Continental, SS-100-X, that President John F. Kennedy was riding in when he was assassinated
The rocking chair from Ford's Theatre in which President Abraham Lincoln was sitting when he was shot
George Washington's camp bed.
A ten-person safety bicycle made in 1896
A collection[10] of several fine 17th and 18th century violins including a Stradivarius.
Thomas Edison's alleged last breath in a sealed tube.
Buckminster Fuller's prototype Dymaxion house.
The bus on which Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat, leading to the Montgomery Bus Boycott
Igor Sikorsky's prototype helicopter.
Fokker Trimotor airplane that flew the first flight over the North Pole.
Bill Elliott's record-breaking race car clocking in at over 212 MPH at Talledega in 1987
Fairbottom Bobs, the Newcomen engine
A steam engine from Cobb's Engine House in England.
The Automotive Hall of Fame is adjacent to the Henry Ford Museum
A working fragment of the original Holiday Inn "Great Sign"

To commemorate the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the RMS Titanic, the Henry Ford Museum exhibited a vast array of artifacts and media documenting the Titanic's voyage and demise. The exhibit was hosted from 31 March to 30 September 2012.
Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn, Detroit

Henry Ford Museum, Dearborn, Detroit

Henry Ford Museum

Henry Ford Museum

George Washington's camp gear

George Washington's camp gear

Chair from Ford's Theatre -Lincoln was shot sitting in this chair

Chair from Ford's Theatre -Lincoln was shot sitting in this chair

1950's Kitchen

1950's Kitchen

1957 Ford Edsel -a flop -some said it looked like a Buick sucking a lemon

1957 Ford Edsel -a flop -some said it looked like a Buick sucking a lemon

Ford Lincoln Continental in which Kennedy was assassinated in 1963

Ford Lincoln Continental in which Kennedy was assassinated in 1963

1902 Presidential vehicle - Brougham used Teddy Roosevelt and President Wilson

1902 Presidential vehicle - Brougham used Teddy Roosevelt and President Wilson

Allegheney Locomotive 1941 -Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad

Allegheney Locomotive 1941 -Chesapeake and Ohio Railroad

Model trains

Model trains

Exploded view of the Model T Ford

Exploded view of the Model T Ford

Ford 1903 Model A

Ford 1903 Model A

Ford 1905 Model B

Ford 1905 Model B

Ford 1914 Model T Touring Car

Ford 1914 Model T Touring Car

Buckminster Fuller's Dymaxion House

Buckminster Fuller's Dymaxion House

Our friendly coach driver Eric with the coach

Our friendly coach driver Eric with the coach

Equality for Women

Equality for Women


1956 Ford F100

1956 Ford F100

1952 Weinermobile

1952 Weinermobile

Posted by Kangatraveller 16:12 Comments (0)

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