The Midwest

 

Recently I attended a program by the fine Flint Symphony Orchestra, which performs in a concert hall located in the Flint Cultural Center. Those planning a visit to the popular, Bavarian-themed community of Frankenmuth nearby would be well advised to also consider making a stop at this excellent museum. The museum tells the story of…

sloan-museum1

 

Old Mission General Store

Posted by Bob Hoelscher in The Midwest on October 18, 2013

 
 

On a recent trip to Michigan, I took an excellent scenic drive north of Traverse City past handsome wineries, cherry orchards, a lighthouse and palatial summer homes. For my money, the highlight of the entire trip was a stop at the Old Mission General Store, at 18250 Mission Road. Established as a trading post for…

general-store9

 
 
 

For some reason…likely just unfamiliarity with the scenic riches that lie beyond…most tour groups visiting Michigan seem to make it as far north as Mackinac Island before turning around and heading back south. Although some tours continue for an extra hour to Sault Ste. Marie to see the Soo Locks and perhaps venture into Canada…

 
 
 

Unfortunately, some extraordinary sites administered by our National Park Service are not very accessible. Among these is surely Agate Fossil Beds National Monument in northwestern Nebraska, even though it is not all that distant from South Dakota’s popular Black Hills resort region. The Monument was once part of the Agate Springs Ranch, purchased by James…

 
 
 

The Missouri, North America’s longest river, meanders from its headwaters in Montana and through the Dakotas, borders Nebraska and Kansas to the east, and Iowa and Missouri to the west, before crossing the “Show Me” State and joining the Mississippi just north of St. Louis.  Although it became an important commercial waterway as the U.S….

 

DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge

Posted by Bob Hoelscher in The Midwest on December 03, 2012

 
 

A unit of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Services, DeSoto National Wildlife Refuge makes a wonderful tour stop for groups traveling in Nebraska. Only about five miles off of I-29, DeSoto is one of over 500 refuges protected and managed nationally. However, DeSoto is much more than just a place to view spectacular flights of…

 
 
 

A great aerial shot of the West Baden Springs Hotel. The dome at the West Baden Springs Hotel is truly breathtaking.  Once dubbed ‘The Eighth Wonder of the World,’ the dome and hotel were officially reopened to the public on September 15, 1902 after the entire structure burned to the ground in 1901.  It is…

 
 

A statue of the devious Pete Dye with a very appropriate quote. When the idea for a golf and gaming feature came up in our weekly Monday meeting a few months ago, Mac and I jumped at the chance to put our names next to it.  That meeting several months ago led us to this:…

 
 

Silver Dollar City’s greatest treasure may be lie 300 feet below its surface. Branson’s pre-eminent theme park is best known for its rides, entertainment and 100 artisans who demonstrate Ozark Mountain crafts for visitors. But the park got its start because of Marvel Cave, a limestone cave that was first discovered by Osage Indians around…

 

Branson Scenic Railway

Posted by Brian Jewell in The Midwest on April 18, 2012

 
 

One hundred years ago, Branson was a newly incorporated town growing around a stop in the White River Line railway that connected Arkansas and Missouri. Today, visitors can experience a taste of historic transportation — as well as the scenery of the unspoiled Ozark mountains — during a ride on the Branson Scenic Railway. When…