Saturday, July 04, 2009

Day 6 - What City Are We In?

July 2nd started in – well, let’s just say Minnesota. We slept in. Yes there is a 5k in two days and we won’t be running tomorrow morning, but we slept in anyway. Today’s adventure was to ride the Light Rail Train to the Science Museum of Minnesota, which used to be in Minneapolis, I think, and Rice Park to see some bronze Peanuts cartoon characters. Luckily they are on the way to the Museum.

So we got to the station and figured out the tickets. Then spent some time figuring out the train route, it turns out there is only one. We wanted to go to 5th and Market Street. So we figured out we that we should get off at 5th Street, even though there was no mention of Market Street on the map.

When we were almost there we saw a couple of Peanuts characters in a small park. Great! Now we know which way to go when we get there.
So we got off the train and got a nice look at the downtown area.
Then we went over to the park and got some fun pictures with Charlie Brown and Lucy.
Then we started walking on in the direction that should be the museum, but… something doesn’t look right. Where is Market Street? Why didn’t we bring TomTom? Walked back a few blocks. There is no building that looks right. We are headed toward Hennepin Avenue; I know that is not right. Go back a block. This seems to be banks, lawyers, city hall… this isn’t right. Then my sister calls, "Can you stop by IKEA for me before you leave Minnesota?" Sure we can, by the way, are you near a computer? She searches and finds the Museum, but can’t figure out where we are. So, we decide to walk a bit more and see what we can find in another direction.
Along the way we found these guys doing some yard work.
And then FabHub breaks the Man Rule and approaches a US Marshall – I told you we were outside some sort of building full of “Responsible People” – he asks the man where the Science Museum is located. The man says “In St. Paul”. So I ask “Are we in Minneapolis?” He answers “Yes”. Okay Then. So the conversation turns to Where are you from? WV, but I used to live in Edgerton, MN in Pipestone County. OF COURSE he says “Oh, yes, I have heard of that place, something about a basketball team.” Yep back in 1960, before the schools were broken up into size classes, David (Edgerton, pop. 1,019) beat Goliath (Austin, pop. 27, 908)for the State Championships with a score of 72 - 61. I just found thi s link to the story, there is a whole website set up to tell the story!
Which means I now know more details about the whole thing too. I had heard that people still remember that, but it is surprising. This US Marshall is probably ready to retire from the service though so that might explain it. It is still crazy though.
I mentioned that I used to come up to the Science Museum a few times when I was in school and he said that he thought it used to be in Minneapolis, but they had moved it to St. Paul. Anyway, he told us we would have to take a bus to get to St. Paul; the train doesn’t run over there so we would have to go back to the airport to transfer. Great. Let’s go back to the airport via the train and figure this out, but on the way by, snap a picture of the Metrodome.
See the "This is TWINS Territory" sign?
And a view of the dome.
What we finally figured out is that we were supposed to get off the train at the Airport and then get on the bus to 5th and Market Street. Or we could have ridden the bus from the Mall straight out to the Museum in the first place. Roflmao… no not really.
So we do all that and look what we found!
The Museum, finally!
The Mississippi river and a butt shot of Billy. If you are new reading this blog, get used to these. He prefers to be seen this way.
So we went in and managed to catch an Omni theater show of the Titanic and the science displays in the Museum. They have tons of interactive activities, displays, and shows that allow the kids to really get some hands on experience with ALL things science. It is something that WV could really use.

Oh and I have to mention, if you are going to have something like that, how about making it the experience user friendly. Walking in off of the street we didn’t know at all what direction to go for anything. There were signs for the Omni show, but nothing to let a person know what to do if they don’t want to see the show. When you get to the counter to get your tickets is the first time you can even know that you do not have to pay the full $30 EACH to get in. We didn’t want to see the Titanic display or even the show to start with, but there was no information and then the girl at the counter picked up on my frustration from the last couple of hours and became even more useless than she was in the first place. Yes, I was irritated – and we hadn’t even been to IKEA yet! I need to send this to the Customer Service people.

After we finished at the Museum we found the bronze Peanuts statues that we were looking for earlier.
Peppermint Patty
This is Marcie and Snoopy's Bird.

After all of that we got back on the bus and road all the way back down to the Mall. Then we went to IKEA. If you have been there without a personal trainer to show you how to participate in the Experience you know what I am talking about. If you haven’t been there, I would suggest not being in an aggravated state before you even enter the building. Then stay calm and do not be in a hurry. Oh and I have heard that taking children with you is Always a bad idea. I don’t really get the whole deal, but we survived the experience and don’t have to worry about going back too soon.

That evening we had a couple of drinks.

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