The Great Minneapolis Walk-Around
Faith Lindell, Becketwood Member
Editor’s Note: This is a great idea for a family outing – especially since Spring has decided to finally show up. Add some of the outdoor spots along the light rail line, such as Minnehaha Falls and Gold Medal Park, right next to the Guthrie.
Having lived in nine different cities, both in the U.S. and overseas during our working years, we rejoiced in being able to retire in our favorite place, Minneapolis. But we soon realized that our ten grandchildren, many of whom also had never lived in Minneapolis, did not know this gem of a city.
So, in 2012, as part of our family Christmas celebration, we decided on a kind of scavenger hunt where the grandchildren could find some of the treasures of our city. Starting the day from Becketwood at 10 a.m., a bus ride and the light rail took us to the Metrodome stop. We walked to the Guthrie and spent time on the large section of the building that juts out towards the river, called “The Endless Bridge.” The sunny crisp day enhanced our spectacular view.
Back on the train, the next stop was City Hall, where we spent time admiring the sculpture Father of Waters, the five-story rotunda with stained glass windows and the grotesques peering out from around the elevator doors.
At this point we wanted the grandchildren to find the Convention Center using mainly the skyways. Each of twelve adults and young teens were given maps of the skyway system and instructions to use their phones to take pictures of interesting sights along the way. They divided into two groups of three teenagers and one group of adults.
Each person carried their own sack lunch so they could eat whenever and wherever they wished. For the adults, pausing in one of the public areas near a piano with seasonal music being played was a welcome rest stop.
Highlights included the original Farmers and Mechanics bank where, as children, Grandpa and one uncle had deposited money in their very own accounts, the Gaviidae Common’s outstanding Christmas decorations and many other decorated locations, the Crystal Court and then down to street level to take a picture of Mary Tyler Moore’s statue on 7th and Nicollet. Orchestra Hall was covered with scaffolding and canvas, so instead they took pictures of the large pipe sculptures on Peavey Plaza.
The instructions were that no one should stop to shop, but when we finished our walk-through, some of us still had enough energy to spent time in the downtown area and do a little day-after-Christmas bargain hunting. The rest of us were eager to return to Becketwood for hot chocolate and popcorn, since all the Christmas cookies had already been consumed. It was truly a memorable adventure.