Minneapolis Journals

Rivertown: Two Trips to the Twin Cities

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A June 2007 trip to Minneapolis by callen60

Golden hued city Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota More Photos
Quote: The Twin Cities in June and July, solo and with family, on the river, in the theatre, and at the ballpark.

Rivertown: Two Trips to the Twin Cities

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Overview

Guthrie Theater Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Quote:
During a four-year period that began—gulp—three decades ago, I lived in Minneapolis. Or, as a displaced city kid, so I liked to tell myself at times. My bucolic college town of 10,000 was a short jaunt away, and I loved the combination of what felt like a classic collegiate setting with the easy access to a metropolitan area. And Minneapolis was a city that worked. Freeway noises were cordoned out of neighborhoods by large, patterned and attractive concrete or wooden walls. The bitter cold winds of the plains could be avoided by the indoor, glass walled Skyway that connected the downtown buildings, keeping one's need for exposure confined to one entrance and exit per trip. Everyone was che...Read More

Metrodome

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Attraction

Metrodome Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Quote:
"I never thought there was a good use for nuclear weapons, but this might be one."—Kansas City Royals pitcher Dan Quisenberry, 1982It ain’t for purists. 25 years after it opened, with its end (at least for baseball) apparently in sight, the Metrodome still feels like a funny place for a game. Some of its flaws have been addressed—the incredibly bouncy turf of the first five years is ancient history—but it’s still loud, indoors, and scarred by the ‘baggie’ that covers the right-field stands.I found myself downtown for the evening, waiting for my brother to finish a preview performance at the Guthrie. The Twins were in town, in the middle of a three-game series with the Bl...Read More

Member Rating 2 out of 5 on August 14, 2007

Metrodome
900 South 5th St.
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55415
(612) 332-0386

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area

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Attraction | "Mississippi River National Recreation Area"

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Quote:
After two experiences in San Francisco’s Golden Gate NRA, I’m more intrigued by the idea of urban national park areas—particularly those that aren’t exclusively historic preservations. The Mississsippi NRA was created in 1988, which explains why it didn’t seem familiar from my years in Minnesota. Like Golden Gate, it’s a collection of sites; unlike GG, however, it has no large expanses of land (evidently, the Federal Government didn’t feel the need to hang on to large portions of the Twin Cities for national defense and protection from invasion).This park consists of 40 sites along 72 miles of the River, mostly administered by other governmental agencies. The relatively new Mississippi ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 14, 2007

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area
111 East Kellogg Blvd. Suite 105
St. Paul, Minnesota 55101
(651) 293-0200

Padelford Packet Boat Co.

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Attraction

Padelford Packet Boat Co. Photo, St. Paul, Minnesota
Quote:
No river is more central to America’s understanding of itself than the Mississippi, and Minneapolis is where the Mississippi becomes large enough to be navigable, making steamboats and (eventually) Mark Twain possible. The great river starts 200 miles upstream in Itasca State Park, where its source looks rather ordinary set among a host of other small lakes. Here, it’s only 20’ wide and three feet deep, but by the time it arrives in the Twin Cities it’s clearly a river of significance.Traveling with my Dad, a fan of rivers and boat rides, it wasn’t surprising that he was interested getting out on the Mississippi. As much time as I’ve lived in the Mississippi’s large valley, it was surprisi...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 14, 2007

Padelford Packet Boat Co.
Harriet Island
St. Paul, Minnesota 55107
(800) 543-3908

Science Museum of Minnesota

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Attraction

Science Museum of Minnesota Photo, St. Paul, Minnesota
Quote:
We had a day to spend in the Twin Cities before the next afternoon’s matinee performance at the Guthrie. We considered river cruises, museums, and parks before eventually heading to the Science Museum of Minnesota. This was in part dictated by its proximity to the River Cruise in St. Paul, but also by my kids’ love of science museums, and the current traveling exhibit A Day in Pompeii.This building opened in 1999, and is located right on the Mississippi on West Kellogg Boulevard, just west of central St. Paul. It’s easy to reach from I-94, and its parking garage is just past the building as you approach from I-94 (if you come from the other direction, the RiverCentre parking lot is ...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on August 14, 2007

Science Museum of Minnesota
120 Kellogg Blvd W
St. Paul, Minnesota 55102
(651) 221-9444

Musings: The Falls and Minneapolis

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Story/Tip

Mississippi National River and Recreation Area Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Quote:
A millwright, a weaver, or a sawyer might also enjoy what perturbed me; but the spirits and saints have now been driven off, the charm sullied. City building and speculation fever, and the arch enemies of beauty in our time have taken over here and are gradually turning the lovely haunts of nymphs and mermaids into a very prosaic millpond. The entire vicinity is on the verge of becoming a temple to the gods of manufacture and trade.—Johann Georg Kohl, Reisen im Nordwesten Vereinigten Staaten, 1857.It’s odd to find technology in disarray: it disturbs our assumptions that progress allows no backward steps. In some ways, we don’t even see an area that was once the cutting edge o...Read More

Minneapolis' Origins: Mill Ruins Park

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Story/Tip

Mill Ruins Park Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Quote:
Despite Johan Kohl's lament, it was inevitable that the power of the Mississippi's St. Anthony's Falls would be fully tapped. The River’s power was first harnessed for cutting lumber, although the soldiers at Fort Snelling also pioneered its use for grinding flour. Both industries were well established when Kohl lamented the falls' usurpation by commerce in the mid-1800s. Lumber eventually yielded the waterfront to grain, and the ruins of the milling industry are now preserved and explained in brand new Mill Ruins Park.The structures on the banks themselves are largely gone, although foundations and a few walls can be seen. A walkway runs along the west/south shore, with a large number of ...Read More

Guthrie Theater

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Attraction | "The New Guthrie Theatre: Riverside Showpiece"

Guthrie Theater Photo, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Quote:
Placed virtually on the Mississippi, the lightly corrugated midnight blue steel skin of the Guthrie’s new home speaks both toughness, utility, and welcome. The building is designed to be a destination in itself, and is fully treated as one by the welcoming staff in every area. Eager to share and show off their new home, they point out its features and send you on to other floors and rooms. Space, color, and light level vary throughout the building, from the tall, airy first-floor space (complete with 6’ reproductions of rave architectural reviews from Time and the New York, Chicago and Minneapolis papers), to the low-ceilinged stainless steel Target Lounge on the 4th level, the deep blue, darker loung...Read More

Guthrie Theater
818 South 2nd Street
Minneapolis, Minnesota 55415
(612) 377-2224