Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The new hotspot

Forget LA, good-bye New York. The Midwest is rising in popularity, according to my recent experiences (admittedly narrow).  No longer a fly-over region, the MW is the new hot destination. I submit as evidence the following:

  • INDIANA: Number one on the list because my son Eric is spending his first semester as a graduate student at Indiana University. His initial assessment: did we know that Bloomington is the nexus of the Midwest universe? Draw a circle around B-town on the map to encompass 4 hour road trips from IU and you'll be pleased to see Cincinnati, St. Louis, Louisville and Chicago. Not that you're anxious to leave IU - a beautiful campus with buildings of light gray Indiana limestone, a bustling college town area and woods, lakes and old quarries surrounding the town. No snarling or bored waiters, hotel staff or store clerks here- forget about it. Why are these people so happy?
  • WISCONSIN: Gary and I had a 4 day long weekend in Spring Green, Wisconsin. Yes, Wisconsin--it's more than cheese! It was the perfect storm of our interests: history, golf and Shakespeare. Home of Frank Lloyd Wright and his famous home/studio-Taliesin, Spring Green in the Wisconsin River Valley is a charming place, inhabited by many aging hippies. I never saw so many middle aged women with gray hair--do they not sell Nice N' Easy in Wisconsin?  We had tracked down James DeVita and his Shakespeare Company after seeing him in a one man show in NYC last year. For golf, we traveled to Lake Michigan coast, where you would swear you were in Scotland--deep grassy rough, hundreds of bunkers, terrific lake views and sheep roaming the course.
  • INDIANA (again!): My eldest brother returned to South Bend and the University of Notre Dame for a visit for the first time since graduating almost 50 years ago.  From touchdown Jesus to The Grotto to sneaking into Father Hesburgh's office, the trip was a big success. Maybe the next cruise vacation will be replaced by an MW staple: Road Trip?
  • MICHIGAN: A friend just reported that her newly married daughter and son-in-law will be abandoning Brooklyn in favor of Ann Arbor, Michigan. Nice to be young and in love. They are optimistic enough to be starting their adventure in the wintry month of December, so let's hope global warming kicks in this year for a gentle transition to a Michigan winter.
Check out the pictures below and think about the big MW for your next adventure. It's not called the Heartland for nothing.
IU Art Museum

Eric and me at IU

Eric and Dad just inside Sample Gate at IU
IU Stadium--also the view from Eric's apt.

Jets fans in Indy
Me at Taliesin- Frank Lloyd Wright's home
Shakespeare in the Park - Wisconsin
Whistling Straits Golf Course

Sheboygan, Wisconsin on Lake Michigan
Salmon in the river - Wisconsin