Doing Duluth

Como Park Zoo and Conservatory, Minneapolis

Becky and the grandkids spent an afternoon with us at the zoo.  Giraffes figured prominently…

The conservatory portion is very pretty, but we only saw it from the outside.  Grandkids are more interested in animals… but it did look like Peter would loved to have walked in among the water lilies like the worker was doing.

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Our cute grandkids got to feed a giraffe!

Headed North

With all three families together, we loaded up Kevin’s Polaris General, and headed for a rented Lake House, a bit north of Duluth, Minnesota…

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Lake Superior Marine Museum & Maritime Visitor Center

The focal point of this museum area in Duluth is the Aerial Lift Bridge.  It is one of only two of this type in the world, the other being in France.  Built in 1905, it originally had a trolley car suspended from the top structure, and would take pedestrians across for a nickel.  Horses and carriages and even some cars made the trip.  With car traffic becoming more common, the bridge was upgraded in 1930 by having a roadway that lifts straight up.  The roadway weighs about 900 tons, but with that same amount of counterweights, it is said it takes very little electricity to open or close it.

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A land locked tug:

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Island Lake, Minnesota

Our hosts for the beautiful lake house warned us that some phone wires would be too low for the motorhome… but they have done this before and had a special stick made to lift them so we could drive under!

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The house was on the shore of Island Lake.  You may notice a few islands!

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Sunrise over the lake:

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An early morning double rainbow seemed a great omen…

 

 

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We had several kayaks, a paddle board, a paddle boat, and several tubes.  Time spent playing in and on the water was wonderful!

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We also got some fun rides in “The General”… and it’s never really done till you get stuck!

Here is a short video recap of our time on the lake and on the trail…

 

Split Rock Lighthouse

1905 saw some of the worst storms Lake Superior has ever seen.  29 ships were lost that year in one storm alone.  With Radar and GPS decades away from being invented, during a storm it was very hard for ships to navigate and stay off the very rocky coastlines.  In response to that disastrous year, the Split Rock lighthouse was created.  The 133 foot cliff was a great spot for a light, but there were no roads anywhere near it.  So a derrick was built to lift all the supplies up the steep cliff to build the beacon.  For years it was only accessible by boat, but now the road makes it much easier (and safer) to visit the lighthouse.  While there we were treated to a torrential downpour, complete with extremely close lightning and deafening thunder!  It added to the mystique of the old lighthouse!

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Music by Bensound.com

 

 

 

 

Maranatha Project Wrapped Up

Another week has passed, and we have wrapped up the Maranatha project redoing 34 rooms in Rees Hall, the girls’ dorm at Union College.  We have spent the last three weeks ripping out the desks/dressers and bookshelves out of the rooms, as well as light fixtures, electrical outlets and more.  We were simultaneously turning big piles of beautiful wood into beautiful and strong cabinets and bookcases.  So we manufactured 68 of the cabinets, involving a total of 340 drawers, and 68 bookcases.  Solid oak face frames and drawer fronts not only look great, but should last forever.

I could show you hundreds of pictures, taken by the Maranatha team leaders, and some more that I shot, but I’ll spare you that.

Here is one of the best rooms pre-renovation.

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And here is what it looks like with new flooring and cabinets…  OK, my picture with the lap drawers in and the baseboard placed is not uploading… hopefully soon!

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Here are a few shots of work in the shop:

 

Parts started multiplying and taking up lots of space!

 

Units had to be moved a lot just to find spots for new ones to be stained and lacquered.

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Then all the finished furniture had to be taken across campus and up to the third and fourth floors!  Thankfully they used a SkyJack to lift them all up and through a window opening.  Here is a load of drawers being sent up.

 

Of course there was a ton of cleaning to be done… Here’s Kathy going above and beyond by vacuuming a part of the shop… note the spot in the lower left that she hasn’t gotten to yet!

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Obviously, the most important job of all was feeding all 100+ volunteers!  Cherryl worked in the cafeteria to aid the otherwise small summertime kitchen crew giving us wonderful food.  Really!

There is supposed to be a nice picture of Cherryl in the kitchen here, but it’s not uploading either!  ARGGG!

 

To close out the week, I’ll show you a few more pictures of the campus:

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Our “home” is just beyond the tennis courts…

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This is a nice little water feature outside the Krueger Science building:

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Why Would You Want To Go To Leavenworth?

Our Kids have been talking about the beauty of Leavenworth for a long time now.  The image that came to my mind was this:

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Leavenworth Prison, Leavenworth, Kansas
By Americasroof – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=8727865

But it turns out they were right! (Imagine that!)  Leavenworth, Washington is a very charming mountain town that looks transplanted from Switzerland.  We had so much fun, and I took so many pictures, that I haven’t had time to get them together for this blog.  So here are a few pictures from a walk in a park in Leavenworth.  Maybe tomorrow I’ll get the rest of the adventure online…

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