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River Drawdown - Stillwater Bike Loop - Mpls Farmers Market

We had heard that the the Mississippi River was being drawn down in Downtown Minneapolis. So we picked up some pizza and headed down to the river.

The other side of the river was packed so we stayed on the west side. I don't know why they don't take advantage of cleaning up all the garbage.

Perhaps everyone could just take a piece of garbage to the trash. It could've been cleaned up in no time flat.




Always finding light sabers.

We got there just before sunset, so didn't have much time to explore. Oh, well.

Later in the week on Friday we headed back to Stillwater. The colors weren't vibrant enough last week so Scott had to go back. It was also 80 degrees today so much more people and boats out. 

The only problem today was there was some fire haze. Never going to be perfect, I suppose.

This time we brought our bikes and did the St. Croix River Crossing Loop Trail. 







Going over the bridge was pretty cool. The cars speeding by were very loud though.



It does have a few bumpouts to take in the scenery.


The walking and bike path is spacious. Plenty of room for everyone.


The Wisconsin side was mostly open prairie and ran along the highway. 





Thank goodness we went the direction we did, because going back to Minnesota was a long steep hill going down.

You used to take this road down to Stillwater. With the new bridge they converted the route to a bike and pedestrian route.








We stopped on the bridge so Meadow could take some photos.

Meadow brought her camera along and took some stellar shots.


Notice the slightly orange glow. Seems like fire haze is going to be regular summer and fall occurrence. Y'all could stop buying gas guzzling SUVs and trucks anytime now.

Everyone was getting one last boat ride in.


The loop was only 4.7 miles, even Meadow said it was easy. We've been taking her on 12 mile rides lately.

Then we found somewhere to lock our bikes and waste some time until it was closer to sunset.



I can't remember the last time I've been here when it wasn't flooded. Usually this building is partially underwater. 

Meadow got some good pics of the riverfront.

This is usually under water.





We walked with Scott up the big hill so he could get his shots.

Once at the top I captured the aerial 360 and some other shots.

Here's the fall 360 I put together for Discover Stillwater. It was a hit on Facebook.

Oh, hey, Theo. He loves taking pictures with my camera when it's over my shoulder.

While Scott was busy we took a walk around the neighborhood. We happened upon a wishing tree.

Most of the wishes were for peace and health. Meadow wished for a lollipop.

Right as we found a playground, Scott said he was done. 

We stopped by the candy shop quick for some treats for the kids. Meadow's wish came true. 

We went back to the brewery, but then picked up QuickFire Pizza. It was good. Food has gotten so much better in Stillwater over the years.

Once it got dark the crowds had cleared out.

The next day Scott was busy with his work so I took the kids on a little day trip to Rice Lake State Park. I had never heard of this park and figured it wouldn't be as crazy crowded as some of the more popular parks. We picked the perfect time to come. 

I recently signed us up for the Hiking Club. I had always seen the signs at the parks but thought it meant it was the most difficult trail. I finally looked it up one day and it turns out it's a fun system to keep track of your hiking mileage. You get a booklet that you log all the hiking club trails you hike in the Minnesota State Parks. Then you get a badge for every 25 miles you hike. When you reach 100 miles you get a free weekend of camping. You have to look for a password somewhere along the trail to prove you hiked it. I thought this would be fun for Meadow.


The goldenrod is starting to go to seed.

Meadow said this park should be called the Yellow Woods State Park.

After we finished the trail we clocked in our first 2.4 miles. Then we had lunch and played at the playground.


When we got home our realtor Nate Pentz sent us a care package of cookies and icing to decorate.

Nice job Theo.

The next day we did our first big trip to the farmers market. I had been going on Friday's but it's gotten to where there's only a couple vendors left.


Everyone was masked up and they made the sheds one way only.

Theo blends in.

It was good to get out to the farmers market. Usually it's one of our regular summer adventures. It was great to be back as a family.

As you can see we got a lot. 

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