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This Week's GART Clue Due April 27th
The place we are now headed is one of the most bike-friendly cities in the U.S.; there are over 300 miles of bike paths, and there is almost one bike per person. This place has always been somewhat forward-thinking, with this state’s first university opening here in 1877 on “The Hill”, and a Parks and Open Space Program beginning in 1898, which has preserved over 54,000 acres in and around this city in the nearly 120 years of its existence. This was also the second state to give women the vote and is considered to be America’s most educated city. The economy here is based on the headquarters of many high-tech and pharmaceutical corporations, including IBM, Ball Aerospace, and Celestial Seasonings, which together employ over 5,500 people. Tea is a big thing here, and there is even an authentic teahouse from Tajikistan that was shipped over piece-by-piece and erected in the middle of this city as a symbol of peace and friendship between the two places. Mostly I can’t wait to head outside for some hiking and rock climbing. It is popular to climb the Flatiron Mountains, which are taller than the Empire State Building, and has been done by a speed climber in a record 5 minutes, 59 seconds and once someone even climbed it on roller skates. I’m also looking forward to eating brunch at The Buff Restaurant, especially the “saddlebags”, which are stuffed pancakes that I can’t wait to try, before sitting on some lawn couches- a new trend people started to get around the city ordinance banning couches on porches. People here walk to the beat of their own drum, that’s for sure!

The Great American Road Trip

over 3 years ago

Santa Fe, New Mexico

Santa Fe was awesome, especially as an art lover. It is the third largest art market in the United States, after New York and Los Angeles, and Canyon Road has more than 100 art galleries in one square mile, making it the densest concentration of art galleries in the world. Amazing!

San Antonio, Texas

San Antonio was so cool! I loved the River Walk, which is lined with cool restaurants and shops, and visiting the Alamo, which was the first of five Spanish missionaries in the San Antonio area and was the location of the famed standoff between Texan and Mexican troops in 1836. This was a very interesting place.

Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

Oklahoma City was a really beautiful place to visit! The Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial was stunning with 168 chairs, one for each of the victims, and the survivor tree, a nearly 100-year old tree that survived the blast. It was also great to catch an OKC Thunder game and watch Kevin Durant in action! Just glad we didn’t experience any tornadoes- this city has more than any other!

Little Rock, Arkansas

Little Rock was so cool! Biking along the Arkansas River Trail was so pretty and visiting the Clinton Presidential Library was really informative- it is the largest presidential library and even includes a life-size replica of the Oval Office!  What a great time!

St. Louis, Missouri

Meet me in St. Louis! It was a fantastic place to go to see everything from the famous Gateway Arch to the most unique amusement park I’ve ever heard of, Cementland. The food here is also fantastic- loved the butter cake, provel cheese, St. Louis-style pizza and homemade root beer floats made this one of the tastiest stops so far!

Bowling Green, Kentucky

Bowling Green is fantastic! I loved visiting Western Kentucky University, which is the 2nd largest in this state, and the Corvette Museum is actually a working factory with all sorts of cool car memorabilia. What a fun place!

Memphis, Tennessee

Memphis was amazing! I loved every second of it, from the river tour rolling down the Mississippi to seeing where the King (Elvis) lived at Graceland, where more than half a million people flock each year. It was also extremely moving to see the National Civil Rights Museum, which was erected on the site of the Lorraine Motel, where Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated on April 4, 1968.

Mobile, Alabama

Mobile was beautiful! It was such a great experience to be here for carnival, which is the biggest party there is this time of year. It was fun to walk the Azalea Trail and visit the memorialized USS Alabama at this state’s only seawater port. It was also awesome to visit the Gulf Coast Exploreum, a hands-on science museum that allows kids to learn through exploration. It was so much fun!

Key West, Florida

Key West was so cool! It was great to visit some of the most iconic spots- the southernmost point in the continental United States, the “Little White House” (former residence of Harry S. Truman), and the long bridges built to connect the islands from mainland Florida to Key West. What a good-time town!


Savannah, Georgia

Savannah was amazing! It’s so beautiful that on his historic (and destructive) march to the sea during the Civil War General Tecumseh Sherman was so impressed with the beauty of Savannah that he could not destroy it and offered it instead as a Christmas present to President Abraham Lincoln. This is also the setting of a famous book, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, which is based on actual events, and the location of the famous bus bench scenes in one of my favorite movies, Forrest Gump.

Asheville, North Carolina

Asheville was so cool! Visiting the Biltmore Estate has long been a dream of mine and it was everything I thought it would be. The more than 30 plaques and statues along the Urban Trail were wonderfully informative and beautiful and the waterfall at Linville Gorge, which is known as “The Grand Canyon of the East” was beautiful. Taking a side trip to the Outer Banks to learn about the Wright Brothers at Kitty Hawk and to learn about the mysterious fate of the early colonists at Roanoke Island was also incredibly fascinating!

Richmond, Virginia

Richmond was fascinating! I was enthralled by the American Civil War Museum, which includes the White House of the Confederacy here in the former capitol of the Confederacy, and the larger-than-life statues on Monument Avenue are awe-inspiring. It was also fun to take some side trips over to Colonial Williamsburg and the settlement at Jamestown, which was England’s first permanent settlement in America. There is just so much history here!

Annapolis, Maryland

Annapolis was so beautiful! It was fascinating to tour the U.S. Naval Academy and see the history of the U.S. Navy. It was also fun to take some side trips down to the Civil War battlefield of Antietam near Sharpsburg and to Baltimore to visit the National Aquarium. The sights, sounds and especially the tastes of the boardwalk in Ocean City were also quite thrilling!

Washington, D.C.

Washington, D.C. was fascinating! I loved every museum, but especially the Museum of American History and the National Gallery. I also was thrilled to tour the J. Edgar Hoover Building, home of the F.B.I., and visit the National Holocaust Museum. I also got to see the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial, which I’ve never seen before, and go up in the Washington Monument, the tallest building in the city, for the first time. There is so much to see we could spend weeks here, but it’s time to move on to our next location.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Philadelphia was breathtaking! I loved visiting Independence Hall, the Liberty Bell and the Betsy Ross house, even if the story of her sewing the first American flag is more fiction than fact. I ate my fill of cheesesteaks from Pat’s King of Steaks, the restaurant that started the traditional sandwich way back in the 1930s, and reenacted the famous scene from the movie Rocky by running up the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. My kids and I loved the Please Touch Museum for Children and the Reading Terminal Market, which houses over 100 different vendors selling food and wares ranging from Amish doughnuts to jewelry.

New Haven, Connecticut

New Haven was amazing! It is the perfect confluence of education, food, history, music and art. I loved visiting the Yale University Art Gallery, which is the oldest college art museum in the U.S., and the Peabody Museum of Natural History, which was founded by O.C. Marsh, the first professor of paleontology in the country. I only wish we could be here in the summer for the Festival of Arts and ideas, which packs the town with artists, performers and academics for two weeks every June.

Boston, Massachusetts

It’s beautiful, historical, gritty and fun! I had a blast hanging out at Harvard Yard, strolling along the Charles River, eating chowder and Boston cream pie by the harbor and visiting all the historical sights along the Freedom Trail. It doesn’t get better than Beantown!

Portland, Maine

Portland, Maine was spectacular! I was amazed at the beautiful scenery of this sparsely populated state, and I can see why so many tourists visit each year. I loved sailing in Casco Bay, biking to each of the area’s 5 lighthouses, hiking into Maine’s rugged interior, and enjoying as many of Portland’s over 500 restaurants as I possibly could.

Rochester, New York

Rochester was such a pleasant surprise! I loved visiting the George Eastman house, with its phenomenal photography exhibit and visiting High Falls, a beautiful waterfall that was used in the early history of Rochester for hydroelectric power, but can now just be enjoyed for its beauty. I had a great time!

Detroit, Michigan

Detroit was amazing! It was so cool to visit the Henry Ford Museum to see the history of innovation in automobiles and the Motown Historical Museum to learn more about Barry Gordy and the artists from “Hitsville, U.S.A.” I also loved walking along the Detroit River, famous for being home to the two busiest crossings between the U.S. and Canada- the Ambassador Bridge and the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel.

Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is one of my absolute favorite cities! I had so much fun playing on the beach of Lake Michigan, kayaking down the Chicago River and I even saw one of this city’s 36 annual parades. I went window-shopping on Michigan Avenue, also known as the Magnificent Mile, and took in a comedy show at The Second City where many comedians have made their start, including Chris Farley and Tina Fey.

Green Bay, Wisconsin

Green Bay was beautiful! Call me a cheese-head for sure! I was lucky enough to watch the Packers in action last Sunday and I even got to see someone do a famous “Lambeau Leap”. My kids and I thoroughly enjoyed visiting the Green Bay Children’s Museum and Bay Beach Amusement Park. What a fantastic place!

St. Cloud, Minnesota

St. Cloud was beautiful! I loved exploring along the banks of the Mississippi River, which is the world’s fourth longest river. I also had fun visiting a nearby alpaca farm and the Mall of America, which is America’s largest mall, at over four million square feet! I feel very fortunate to be here in the fall when the state’s official fruit, the honeycrisp apple is in season- yum!

Keystone, South Dakota

South Dakota was amazing. I loved seeing the iconic Mount Rushmore up close. I also visited the Akta Lakota Museum and Cultural Center in Chamberlain and the Presidential Wax Museum. I can't wait to return when the mountain monument to Crazy Horse is completed to learn more about this Native American historical figure.


Jackson, Wyoming

Jackson was awesome! I had a fantastic time eating classic cowboy cuisine and watching the bucking broncos at the rodeo, as well as hiking through some of the most gorgeous landscapes in our country at Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks, which this city of around 10,000 is nestled between. It is also home to the National Elk Refuge and the National Museum of Wildlife Art. 

Source: Wikipedia

Photo Source: Wyoming Public Media


Missoula, Montana

Missoula was such a cool town! I loved visiting the Victorian mansions, taking a ride on the hand-carved carousel and playing disc golf while hiking through the mountains surrounding Missoula. This city of around 70,000 people is home to the University of Montana. It is only 3 hours south of Glacier National Park and is known for its mild winters (in Montana terms, anyway). 

Sources: Wikipedia,

Photo Credit: Nelson Kenter


Seattle, Washington

Seattle was so cool! From the museums at Seattle Center to the restaurant at the top of the Space Needle there is so much to see and do! Although this city has a reputation for bad weather, it's actually the 44th wettest city in the nation, so we were able to enjoy some sunny weather on our segway tour around the city.

Photo Credit: Michael Riffle, 2011

Astoria, Oregon

Our second stop took us to Astoria, Oregon, a port city where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean. This beautiful city of 9,500 people is the most humid city in the country (tied with two others) and the temperature goes above 80 degrees an average of only four days a year!

Source: Wikipedia        
Photo Source:

San Luis Obispo, California
Our first stop on our Great American Road Trip is to San Luis Obispo. This is a beautiful city on the central coast of California adjacent to the campus of California Polytechnic University. 

By Susanna Ventura

Interact Club Homepage

over 3 years ago

Interact induction ceremony scheduled May 11

All Interact members and families are invited to the MVP gym on Wednesday, May 11th at 5:30 p.m. for a potluck dinner/induction ceremony. We will be celebrating our accomplishments from the 2015-2016 school year. Hope to see you there!

Next Meeting: January 29th

By Susanna Ventura

Informational Meeting

Thursday, Lunch recess, Mrs. ventura's room