Left quaint, friendly La Crosse this morning after a much-needed breakfast.
The people are nice here. I parked the bike in front of Duluth Trading downtown and a young man was outside the store managing a sidewalk sale. I took a little too long getting back to the bike and smiling big, my new friend on the sidewalk proudly told me that he had gotten the parking cops to cut me some slack. "My man is here all the way from Georgia. No way you're ticketing that bike." It was certainly appreciated.
I was walking around town looking at things and it dawned on me that the German heritage here is very strong. Lutheran churches all over town, they love their cheeses and sausages, and, of course, their beer. There was a brewery pub open and doing a full business there at 1100 in the morning. Savannah has nothing on these folks.
As I was leaving town, I got to see the city's most famous landmark, the World's Largest Six Pack.
These are actually holding tanks for the old La Crosse beer brewery. The tanks are painted to be oversized replicas of La Crosse beer cans. When La Crosse quit brewing and sold the brewery to a company called City Brewers," the "cans" were painted over. The locals got so mad and raised such a stink that the new owners had to repaint the "cans."
Here are the stats...and they are impressive.
By midday I was across the state line and into Minnesota...Land of 10,000 Lakes...and they're not kidding.
Ripped through Lake City...which boasts that it is the "Birthplace of Waterskiing." It was beautiful and clearly up here the folks mean to take advantage of their short summer. I saw tons of boats out sailing, and even more motorcycles, hundreds of them.
Later in the day, I rolled into a pretty little town called Red Wing.
Yep, as in Red Wing Shoes. Made right here. This is the corporate office and original store. They have the world's largest shoe in there. I didn't feel like standing in line for a picture of me next to it...sorry.
By suppertime I had made it to Little Falls, boyhood home of Charles Lindbergh. There is a museum here...and he is well remembered. The high school team here is called "the Flyers."
Tomorrow it's a hard left turn and off to North Dakota, where the stretch run to the coast begins for real.
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God bless you!