S: The Great River Road
FC: The Great River Road from Beginning to End September 27, 2011 to October 27, 2011
1: Our adventure begins when we meet Don, Barbara, Richard and Georgia in Colorado. From there we travel to Scott Bluffs and visit the Corn Palace before reaching the start of the caravan in Minnesota
2: Getting to know one another at potlucks and L.E.O.'S (where the bread pudding was to die for (so I am told) | Guy and Norma celebrate 50 years
3: Our first day, we board a bus that takes us to the source of the Mississippi River at Itasca State Park. | We meet our guide at the visitors center. | Shari attempts to walk across the "great" Mississippi
4: We have a delicious lunch at the park lodge which includes wild rice. The countryside from our bus windows is at the peak of Fall colors. Before ending our tour, we visit Bemidji Woolen Mills and Paul Bunyan and Babe, the Blue Ox.
5: Our first driving day, starts very rainy, but clears to show wonderful fall colors | We are treated with the sighting of a deer
6: After stopping to "smell the roses" all day, we barely make it in time for the wonderful dinner play
7: A big city tour day of gangster caves, government buildings, churches, museums and neighborhoods of St. Paul/Minneapolis
9: Who ever knew so much started in Minnesota?
11: A lunch cruise on the Mississippi River and an impromptu margarita party
12: Neat things to see as we drive to our next stop
14: Another great drive day with a stop at the Mississippi River Museum, topped off with staff-prepared Italian dinner.
15: Our morning activity takes us to the locks on the Mississippi and the National Armory
16: Our afternoon is filled with tours of John Deere, Isabel Bloom, American Pickers, a gin distillery and dinner at the locally famous Shed
17: Wish we had more time at the Amana Colonies after lunch, but we still had to visit the Hoover Library and the biggest truck stop in the US
18: We drive to our next campground and immediately get on the trolley for our tour of Hannibal. | Mormon temple and historical site
19: Tom and Becki await us when we get back to camp. We visit the Tom Sawyer Museum, are treated to a Clemen's performance, and see original Norman Rockwell prints. I still have time for a geocache
20: Dinner and dancing on the river
21: Another full day touring St. Louis Basilica, Cardinal stadium, Anheuser-Busch with samples | Mosaics all done with little pieces of colored tiles. As pretty as ones in Italy.
22: One of those highlighted days-a visit to the home of former President Grant and then the St. Louis Arch.
23: We see a movie of the arch's construction, visit the museum and ride the little elevator car to the top
24: A rare free day, Bert finds a life bird on a bike ride.
25: May the bounty of the season fill your heart and home. | We meet good friends, Doug and Kay, for lunch in Sikeston, MO
26: Everyone enjoys their full day at Graceland
27: Another full day: Morning to St. Jude, famous walk of the ducks at the Peabody hotel and lunch at renown Arcade after city tour of Memphis
28: In the afternoon we stroll Beale Street where Memphis blues began and then Sun Studio where Rock & Roll began.
29: On one of our few rainy days: good for the tour of the Memphis River Museum and lunch at one of the oldest cafés in the city
30: A day at Vicksburg National Battleground and a mansion tour
31: Natchez Trace
32: Continuing our travel day on Natchez Trace | A great place for fried chicken on the Trace
33: Merritt, Diane and Richard serenade as Guy marries Moushi to his sweetheart. Georgia celebrates
34: Horse and buggy tour of Lynchburg and tour of two mansions
35: A travel day. On the way we visit the mansion where Audubon stayed to tutor and paint.
36: Our visit to Mardi Gras World enlightens us to the year round work of float making.
37: New Orleans, Jackson Square and Muriel in the French Quarter
38: The French Market for lunch before touring an above- ground cemetery
39: Great food and funny lesson at the cooking school
40: We choose to do a swamp tour on our free day | People live in the swamp without electricity or cars | After lunch stop for beer
41: Our last day we take a bus to the mouth of the Mississippi River where we board a float plane
42: We stop for shrimp before we head back
43: Our farewell lunch is in a converted church on a working plantation with friendly(?) alligators