Sunday, July 31, 2011

Daily Adventures August 1 - 6, 2011

We went camping this weekend at the Baker Park Half Moon group site - part of the Three Rivers Park District.  I recommend it.  Despite the mosquitoes, and the fact that the sweat lodge that was our tent induced a Vision Quest experience, I had a great time.  We went with seven other families, and I was reminded that there is nothing like hanging out with friends while your kids run around catching frogs, building sand castles, and roasting marshmallows.  Simply divine. 

Monday, August 1  We're going to head to the Quaking Bog of Wirth Park.  It was named "Best Nature in the City" in 2008 in City Pages.  I don't know what's better in the years since, but there is something nice about this place.  Maybe it's the "nearly 200 mature tamaracks [that] shade the understory sphagnum moss of the hidden five-acre acid bog."  Or maybe it's the squishy sound I hear when I step on the floating walkway.  Either way, it's worth a stop.  Here's a self-guided tour of the bog.

Tuesday, August 2  If you've not been to Caponi Art Park, I strongly recommend it.  Take your time there.  It's not flashy, but it's pleasing.  The trails that snake through the park lead to small surprises that make me stop and think.  On Tuesdays they have programs for families, and today features the "Voice of Culture," a West African drum and dance troupe.  And, to top it off, there's a tree swing there that is a favorite part of summer for my boys.  There's a suggested donation of $2 per person. 

Wednesday, August 3  The Midtown Global Market hosts "Wee Wednesdays" on, well, Wednesdays.  True, this is geared towards kids 5 and under, but the Global Market is pretty cool even if the band is singing Barney covers.  OK, maybe that would make it not cool.  But today at 10:30 am the Roe Family Singers take the stage, and they started as a Johnny Cash tribute band.  If Johnny Cash ain't cool, I don't know what is.  When the music dies, take a look around and maybe buy an East African lunch at Safari Express.  Midtown Global Market is right on the Midtown Greenway so biking there could be fun!

A note for dinner on Wednesdays: Jakeeno's Pizza and Pasta offers a free large cheese pizza with the purchase of any large pizza on Wednesday evenings.  They've got a nice little patio too!

Thursday, August 4  I feel like Fort Snelling is another of those places, kind of like Minnehaha Falls, that I've come to take for granted.  But think about it - there's a fort, built almost 200 years ago, sitting right in the middle of our fair city.  Your visit will cost $10 per adult, and $5 per child, but there are costumed guides, exhibits, demonstrations, and even a cell-phone tour to make it worthwhile.  Last time I was there, they shot off a cannon.  Boom, big time.

Friday, August 5  Check out the Milwaukee Avenue Historic District.  It's the first planned worker's community in the city.  Not only are the garages not attached, you can't even drive up to your own house if you live here.  I find this little corner of Earth intriguing.  After you stroll through, visit the nearby Seward Co-op Deli for lunch.  Sit at the window bar and watch the work-a-day world go by.

Saturday, August 6
  The Home Depot has seen a lot of my face this summer as I attempt to keep my 88-year-old house in working order.  Today, they'll see my face for a pencil box.  The first Saturday of every month from 9 am to noon sees a kids how-to workshop at all Home Depots.  And since it's back-to-school time, pencil boxes are the fare.  While I'm there, maybe I'll pick up a meat thermometer.  Home Depot has those, right?

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