Who would think a shopping mall is an “indoor theme park”?? Well that is how they market Mall of America, aka MOA. I suppose given that they do have a 30 ride indoor amusement park complete with arcade games, that would qualify it as a theme park. Or would it because the “theme” is shopping?? I guess I don’t know.
Three floors, four huge department stores, and over 500 specialty stores; this place is a shop-a-holic’s dream destination. Unfortunately, I’m not much of a shopper and that many options send me on sensory overload. I mean really . . . how many shoe stores do you need? Famous Footwear and DSW Shoe Warehouse should be plenty! Twenty-five plus five athletic shoe stores are just too many. I guess if you can’t find the right style, color and size here, it simply does not exist!
Bloomingdales, Macy’s, Sears and Nordstrom each anchor a corner of the mall. They say that if you walk the entire square of a floor of MOA, you will log about one mile. On this day, we did our mile’s worth on the second floor and called it a day, especially since we were not shopping for anything in particular. It was more of a “How can you go to Minneapolis for a weekend and NOT go see Mall of America?”
It was a bit strange seeing a storefront for the local Native American casino, Mystic Lake. With over 100 black jack tables, slot machines and bingo it seemed to be a bit tame for our gambling interests. They have headline entertainment out there, however, with Kelly Clarkson performing on New Year’s Eve this year. Tickets are still available.
MOA is a great destination if you want to get in your power shopping, given that it is very accessible from the Minneapolis Int’l Airport. Northwest is their hometown airline and does its civic duty in promoting local tourism for the mall. There is light rail from the airport out to MOA so leave your car in Milwaukee, Chicago, Des Moines or wherever in the Midwest you come from. Parking is a bit crazy so be prepared to jockey for a space . . . or do yourself a favor and consider using shuttles or other free transportation available in the area. We were at the Comfort Inn, who did have free transportation to and from MOA.