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Mitch's Blog


Monday, July 12, 2004

I have been looking for a good lead-in into my post about going to the Fargo-Moorhead area to check out the local scenery, and I think I found one. I’m going to post an article that appeared in the Chicago Tribune on Sunday, June 13th. It’s about life in the Midwest, and the oft-expressed view by residents of the coasts that the Midwest is a boring, uninteresting place to live. Take a read; it might be a little wordy, but I thought it was a pretty good article.

Hick or hip?
Confused coastals give Midwest a bad rap

By T.J. Becker
Special to the Tribune
Published June 13, 2004

Since 1997, Harris Interactive has conducted an annual poll asking Americans where they would most like to live other than their current state. In seven years, no Midwestern state has ranked in the top 15.

What's the problem? Granted, the weather can get a little dicey, an understandable turnoff for folks fond of gentler climes. But writing off the Midwest goes beyond climatic conditions...

Click here to read the rest of the article

I am very proud to not only be a Minnesotan, but a Midwesterner as well. As expressed in the article, Minnesota, and the Midwest as a whole, both have many very good qualities that make them excellent places to live. I could elaborate on this point a little bit, but I don’t really think it’s necessary to do so.

Anyway, the point of this entry was to share some of the better photos from my short trip to the Fargo-Moorhead area. As much as I love Minnesota, I also really enjoy the beauty to North Dakota. No, I’m not being sarcastic, either. I particularly think that the photos of the wide open expanses of few trees and a lot of farmland below are very scenic, even though a lot of other people seem to not be able to agree with me. It’s really not hard for me to find beauty in just about every kind of landscape, whether it be tall mountains or flat prairie. I think the fact that North Dakota is so sparsely populated is another reason that draws me to the landscape. Although I’m particularly mentioning the landscape in the Red River Valley area of eastern North Dakota when I refer to the photos below, I also think western North Dakota, past the Missouri River is also very beautiful, perhaps even more so than the eastern portion of the state.

Before I turn into an advertisement for the North Dakota Tourism Bureau, I’ll present the pictures that I took from my trip on Saturday, June 5th. Besides just Fargo-Moorhead, I also made it to Harwood, ND, a small, and I mean small – the only place that showed any signs of life was the Elks Club – community about 9 miles north of Fargo. I also made it to Mapleton and Casselton, about 12 and 20 miles west of Fargo, respectively. It was a pretty fun day, not to mention that I managed to get a few decent photos of trains in North Dakota, and I made it to a cache.

If you’re interested in saving the endangered species of North Dakota, check out this website organized by the Fargo Forum about the questionable future of the rural areas of the state. It’s quite an interesting site with many good articles dealing with current North Dakota issues. Also, here’s an old, but good, newsgroup thread on Google Groups discussing the actual existence of North Dakota.

Here are some of the pictures that I took:

On Highway 10 east of Hawley, MN

The Hawley City Hall/Police Station/City Council Building

One of the buildings in downtown Hawley

The flat land near Harwood, ND

At Harwood Station

My favorite photo of the trip, a field near Harwood, ND

The Sheyenne River in West Fargo, ND

A train heading east between Mapleton, ND and Casselton, ND

One of the trains I saw in Casselton, ND

Another train heading west that went through Casselton, ND

Another one of those flat fields in North Dakota

I saw this little critter, some sort of chipmunk I think, near Mapleton, ND

This picture was actually taken a few weeks after this trip in Royalton, MN, but I thought it was pretty neat anyway, and decided to include it with this collection


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Mitch's Blog began on December 23, 2001