Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Minnesota River Towns Lakes State Parks Performing Arts and Local Brew Traditions

Minnesota means clear blue water from the Dakota language. Nearly 60 percent of the population lives in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, the center of transportation, business, industry, education, government and an internationally renowned arts community. The remainder of the Land of 10,000 Lakes consists of western prairies, forests in the southeast and mining, forestry, and recreation in the North Woods.

The Twin Cities besides the Mississippi river, they are also connected by the Metro Green Line light rail, which runs between Minneapolis’ Target Field and St. Paul’s Union Depot, with more than 20 stops.

Performing Arts Minnesota is home to a number of older stages that have been recently restored
Fergus Falls built in 1921 as the Orpheus, and later known as the Fergus Theatre, this venue has evolved from vaudeville to film and back to stage performances. The Center for the Arts remodeled and updated the space in 1995, showcasing a variety of live performances.

St Cloud the Sherman Theatre opened in 1921 and was renamed as the Paramount in 1930. Like other venues, it transitioned from vaudeville to cinema to disrepair and renovation, transforming into a multimedia arts center, keeping the original design, acoustics and decor intact.
Minneapolis historic venues include First Avenue with a history of live rock music.

Native American Heritage indigenous people have lived in what is now Minnesota for thousands of years. When the Europeans arrived the predominant American Indian tribe was the Dakota. As explorers and settlers moved west, the Ojibwe, who lived in the central Great Lakes region, were forced into Dakota Territory. The resulting migration resulted in the Dakota residing primarily in the prairies of the Minnesota River Valley and points south and west, while the Ojibwe inhabited the lakes and forests of north and central Minnesota.

Lakes and Fishing Minnesota has many bodies of water and more shoreline than California, Florida and Hawaii combined. The deep, cold waters of Lake Superior, the world’s largest freshwater lake, offer charter fishing for native lake trout as well as steelhead, chinook, salmon and walleye. Aside from the Mississippi, other rivers include the Minnesota, St. Croix and Red River of the North, where anglers can reel catfish or northern pike, smallmouth bass, walleye, pan fish and over 100 lesser-known species. Northern pike are one of the most widespread fish in the state, from the backwaters of the Mississippi to the wilderness lakes of canoe country.

Minnesota has 4,000 miles of Scenic Paved Biking Trails
The State Park System begins at the source of America’s greatest river. Itasca State Park, one of 67 state parks, is home to the headwaters of the Mississippi River, was established in 1891, launching what is now the second-oldest state park system in the nation. Most are on lakes or rivers with opportunities for boating, canoeing, fishing and swimming, with hundreds of miles of hiking trails through forests, bogs, grasslands, and along riverbanks and lakeshores.
Jay Cooke State Park 20 miles southwest of Duluth, follows the rugged, rocky St. Louis River, which thunders when the water is high. Whitewater rafting trips are hosted on the river in nearby Carlton, and the University of Minnesota Duluth runs the Kayak and Canoe Institute just outside the park boundaries, with classes open to the public.

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The River Towns of southeast Minnesota are perfect for a weekend packed with activities. Only 60 miles from the Twin Cities, the town of Red Wing, tucked between bluffs and river, has many historic Victorian properties and farmhouses. The St James hotel, dating to the 1880s, offers elegant dining overlooking the Mississippi River and is near the Amtrak Depot, built in 1904, with an art gallery and visitor center.

Winona is an arts and cultural center. The riverside Minnesota Marine Art Museum, with three major galleries, holds hundreds of fine art pieces, including works by Picasso, Van Gogh and Monet, depicting lakes, oceans and rivers. Enjoy a stroll around Lake Winona. The Garvin Heights overlook features panoramic views of the town and Mississippi River Valley.
New Ulm follow the Minnesota River Valley Scenic Byway and experience Old World German heritage through unique architecture, restaurants and shops selling German imports, from chocolates to cuckoo clocks. A traditional Glockenspiel features figures from the town’s history; you can also take a narrated history tour downtown.
Wines and Brews on a scenic estate tucked back into the woods is Schell’s, the country’s second-oldest family-run brewery. Celebrate the release of Schell’s seasonal bock beer at the annual Bock Fest on Feb. 6, the same day New Ulm celebrates Fasching, the German Mardi Gras.The town also offers one of the state’s best-established vineyards. Weekend visitors can enjoy live music and pizzas at the countryside winery weekends through December, or at The Grand Kabaret weekends throughout the winter.
Fitger’ Brewhouse in Duluth boasts more than 100 beer recipes and a connection to a North Shore brewing tradition that dates back to the 19th century, A Duluth legend, the brewery's tanks are scattered throughout the complex and can visited.
Lift Bridge in Stillwater was the first on-site brewery taproom in Minnesota, part brewery, part neighborhood hangout, and an opportunity to taste some interesting brews.
Summit Brewing in St Paul is a leader of the modern Minnesota craft beer movement with the release of its ever-popular Extra Pale Ale in 1986. Since its launch, the brewery has expanded both its production facility in St. Paul and its brewing horizons, releasing new year-round and limited-run beers that are among the most popular in the Upper Midwest.

Minnesota River Towns Lakes State Parks Performing Arts and Local Brew Traditions
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