Monday, September 27, 2010

Brookings & Sioux Falls

Sunday Sept. 5th - Monday Sept. 27th

Landmark on our drive thru Pochahontas, Iowa after visiting relatives. Spent a couple days in Sioux Falls with our daughter.

Biking Beauties before the Cycle to Stop the Cycle ride (for the Domestic Abuse Shelter) in Brookings on Saturday, Sept. 11th. I have hardly ridden at all this past year, but managed to ride 40 miles in about 4 hours. It was fun to see my old biking buddies again.

It was the grand opening for the new Children's Museum in Brookings while we were there. It is the old Central Elementary School remodeled with a $500,000 donation from Dale Larson of Larson Manufacturing (doors & windows).

A close-up of the dinosaur on the north side. It moves and roars.

Our peaceful campsite at Rich's place west of Brookings.

A view of the train in the background between Volga and Brookings, as we were out for our daily walk.

View of the soybean plant in Volga, also as we were walking down the country road. Thanks Rich and Kathy for all the veggies and salsa and the campsite. The salsa was delicious!

Back in Sioux Falls, house sitting for our daughter.
The bike path in Sioux Falls goes over the spillway on this bridge.

This is the bike path switch backs above the spillway.

After the switchbacks we rode along the diversion channel behind the State Penitentiary.

This is by the dam where the Big Sioux is diverted around the city to prevent flooding. From here we rode south along the west side of the airport, along a couple of golf courses and behind the zoo, where we saw two leopards, two zebras and some bison.

This was just behind the Olive Garden on the west side. Needless to say, the trail was kind of messy here.

This is by Tuthill Park heading back toward Cliff Avenue and home. We rode about 20 miles, but didn't do the downtown area, as there is a lot of construction going on there.

The annual South Dakota Festival of Books was going on the last weekend in September. So we went to several author talks and an excellent live performance of "Huckleberry Finn" at the Orpheum done for S.D. Public Radio. The picture is from one of the author talks we went to. The authors were Bruce Junek and Tass Thacker. They have been traveling the world on their bikes for 34 years. Their talk and photos were on the Mayan Ruins and South America and it was excellent. I read their book, A Road of Dreams, a few years ago. It was about their two year bike trip around the world and I liked it very much. They are planning a bike trip thru China next year.

This is taken from the Observation Deck at Falls Park about five days after recent flooding in Brookings and nearby areas. The water was really roaring thru.

We walked down to the park several times. It is a little over a mile from our daughter's house and such a beautiful place to walk around.

You can see the clock tower on the old courthouse behind the railroad bridge.

This was a lovely Sunday evening and lots of people were strolling around and crawling around down on the rocks next to the water.

Here you can see the cathedral in the distance.

Here is a picture of the Observation Tower taken from the south end of the park.

Another shot of the cathedral and the railroad bridge.

The bike path bridge and the Overlook Cafe.

Taken from the south end of the park with some boys sitting down along the edge of the water.

Near the south entrance to the park along the new walking/biking path from downtown. The downtown sculpture walk continues thru the park with several more sculptures.

Taken from 6th Street on the far south end where the falls is just getting started.

The Old Courthouse Museum is free and pretty cool. The courthouse originally opened in 1890 at a cost of $135,000. The clock tower is 165' tall. It closed in 1962 when the new courthouse opened.

My favorite was the underwear room. It had all kinds of men's and women's undies and the history of changing fashions and the reasons and purposes for said fashions. Some interesting tidbits.

There was a group of young school children taking a tour and their teacher wouldn't allow them to go in this room. John liked the room that was all about hot air balloons and, of course, the corn room. What Iowa farm boy wouldn't like that! There was also a room with Indian beadwork, one about all the past drive-ins in Sioux Falls and one about hunting, trapping and pets.
In 1938 Mayo Kellogg (18 months old) fell in a 5' deep water tank near Sinai. The family collie, Nipper, dove in and grabbed the baby and stood on the narrow edge of the tank barking incessantly while holding the child's head above the water with his front paws until his grandma heard and came.
He was hit and killed by a truck a few months later. They saved the pelt as a lasting memory of their heroic collie and it is now in the museum.

Even the water closets are cool. You pull the chain from the top to flush them.
Probably no more blogs till end of October. We will be heading thru Montana to spend some time with our kids and grandkids and then to Portland, Oregon to see John's aunt and then south to warmer climates.
Over and Out.