Day 5: More Minnesota

Most of the day was spent in the Twin Cities. The day started grey but got sunny and hot quickly enough. Got tons of photos. I finally got to see two statues that have been on my list for years: the Beach Dude and the Snowman (photos over at the Flickr account). There were some really nice and interesting gas stations and midcentury churches. I shoot an awful lot of churches for an atheist. Here are a couple that won’t make the cut for the website.

This is the Beth El Synagogue in Minneapolis. The silvery side faces a major highway and then changes shape as you drive by it. I don’t know if there have been any accidents as a result but I know my attention to the road was not good.
http://www.bethelsynagogue.org/about/index.shtml

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And this is St. Peter’s Lutheran in Edina — smaller scale and more elegantly simple than the synagogue:
http://www.stpetersedina.org/

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Downtown Minneapolis has lots of skywalks which link buildings together – a convenient necessity during those long winters. It’s sure hard to imagine how cold it gets here at this time of year.

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Also in downtown Minneapolis: this one puzzles me. Were these water fountains originally or only for certain times of the year? Is this just for summer that they grow these prairie grasses to as an eco-friendly gesture? Or is this an art piece?

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The Nicollet Mall in downtown Minneapolis has the nicest manhole covers I’ve ever seen:

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I parked the van in a parking garage downtown for about 20 minutes because there were no spots and I needed to shoot a few things indoors and on the pedestrian mall. It was one of those spiral type garages that I love and I risked getting rear-ended to get this shot. I love to drive just a teensy bit too fast on these to hear that echo-y tire squeal.

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When I returned, I discovered that the dogs had busted into the cooler to get the cheese curds. Gone — just a ripped up plastic bag as evidence. I don’t know if it was just one dog that reaped the profits or if it was a family affair. I should find out soon as there are also some roasted cashews missing.

And if that wasn’t the highpoint of their day, Cleary Lake was. An incredible dog park with 28 acres just for off-leash romping. A big pond, mowed trails & big unmowed fields if your dogs like to deer-hop like mine do. Fenced but a determined little dog could get out (luckily mine didn’t). Fun, fun, fun. There are lots of other big, fenced dog parks around Minneapolis & I wish we could have sampled them all.
http://www.ecoanimal.com/dogfun/minnesota.html

Here’s a really nice painted wall sign in downtown Minneapolis:

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I went to Como Town in St. Paul to shoot the old kiddie rides. While there, I noticed these bumper cars. I’ve never modern ones like this before:

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When you’re a kid, there’s just nothing as much fun as driving your own car. Although these kids were way too highly supervised by khaki-wearing employees:

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Speaking of driving — very late here– and I have a lot of it to do tomorrow. Time to call it a night.

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