Over the 4th of July weekend, my sister came to visit me in Minnesota so we did some exploring!
She arrived Friday evening and then we had 3 full days before she flew back on Tuesday morning. The first full day she was here, we discovered there was a Frank Lloyd Wright house in Mason City, Iowa so we went on a road trip!
We have been fans of Frank Lloyd Wright houses for some time; ever since seeing our first – Falling Water, in Pennsylvania and have toured several more since then. We are also on a quest to visit every state and Iowa was still to be checked off!
We had to stop and get a picture with the Mason City sign because our nephew’s name is Mason 🙂
Then we headed to the Frank Lloyd Wright house – the Stockman House.
After the house tour, we headed into town to see the bank and hotel Frank Lloyd Wright had designed.
There are no official tours of the bank and hotel since they are in operation, but we were able to go inside the hotel and look around.
On the way back to Minnesota we stopped so I could get a picture of the state sign.
On the second full day, we headed up to northern Minnesota to Bemidji to see the statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox.
Then we headed to Itasca State Park to see where the Mississippi River starts.
Our grandma had told us that it was a tiny creek that you could stand with one foot on each side of the Mighty Mississippi! Well, that was not the case.
It was really shallow and people were walking through it, which was neat considering how large the river becomes.
And then we explored Itasca State Park some more and wound up climbing this tower, which only allows 6 people at once for “safety”, aka the tower was very shaky and a bit scary!
Once at the top, it was swaying a lot with the wind so I snapped a quick photo and we headed back down! This would be gorgeous in the fall!
And a photo along the hike back from the tower.
Finally, on the third full day, it was time to explore Minneapolis! Since it was 4th of July, we started the day off with some festive donuts from Glam Doll Donuts (after our morning aqua aerobics class).
Then we set out to do paddle boarding! It was both our first time paddle boarding other than the family paddle board we tried in Greece.
It was the perfect day for it – not too hot! And it was a lot of fun! I even convinced my sister to do a Pilates pose on the paddle board for her Instagram.
Afterwards, we stopped and got ice cream from Milkjam Creamery. It was so good! I had been there once before in the winter but it was better than I remembered. I got Hard Knock Life and Ridin’ Duuurty. Yum!
We finished off the day with seeing some sights around Minneapolis including a birds eye view of downtown riverfront where people were camped out ready for the evening fireworks show.
It was a fun and busy three days!