Hey, everybody! It’s been a long time since I’ve posted- whoops! But we’ve still gone on a lot of adventures as a family. Our latest road trip was up to Duluth, Minnesota to see the Bentleyville lights!
Did you know Bentleyville is billed as America’s largest free walk-through light display? Located right on the canal, it’s best to dress warm to this light display as temperatures are sure to go below zero. We visited on a Saturday night and it wasn’t ideal- because there were SO many people there! I would recommend looking at the expected attendance calendar on their website and then picking a weeknight if you can make it work… unfortunately with our jobs we were stuck with a weekend. We still had a lot of fun- Summit was very impressed with the lights and music, along with all the costumed creatures.
We didn’t make it to see Santa Claus at Bentleyville- the line was way too long for any of us to handle it in the cold! Apparently all kids that visit with Santa receive a free hat- I’ve heard there were really great quality. Maybe that will be in store for us next year!
We stayed at the Northern Rail Traincar Inn, a little past Two Harbors. I would highly recommend this place to anyone— especially those with little kids who would love sleeping in a real train car. Summit had a blast exploring the train and was totally blow away by the fact that we got to sleep there. The inn is locally owned, has great room rates and even has a free breakfast! The decorations were super cute for Christmas and they even offered free board games, toys for the little ones and a HUGE dvd library so you could watch movies in your room. We will definitely be back!
Another highlight our trip was visiting Glensheen Mansion for their annual Duluth Winter Village celebration. For one weekend in December, the Glensheen grounds are open to the public for this artist-driven event. Local shops set up mini "houses" to show off their wares, along with a food tent with local treats and free s'more-making! Honestly- I thought this was more fun for us than Bentleyville. It was way less crowded and Summit loved being up close to the waves. I hope the city and Glensheen keep this event going each year!
We also had the opportunity to eat at OMC Smokehouse for the first time- OMG- it was good! OMC Smokehouse specializes in smoked meats, along with tasty BBQ sauces. We enjoyed our meal and were surprised by the extremely fast and kind service- even though the restaurant was packed! While we waited for our table, we ventured around the block and were pleasantly surprised to meet a bear inside of the Knife River Store- how fun :)
I would definitely recommend Duluth in the wintertime. Yes it's cold, but the city really makes up for the chill with its amazing local events. We can't wait to go back next year!