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You are on Page 2 (2013 Travel America)
Contents: DAY 5-6 (July 1-2); Omaha, Union Station/Durham
Museum (Sue the T-Rex), Johnny's Cafe, The Corn Palace, and other sights in
Nebraska and South Dakota
Click to Page 1
5, July 1
of downtown Omaha
We tried to eat at Gerda's Bakery the night
before (not open even though the hotel brochure said they should be), then
this morning (found out they don't serve anything but sweet rolls &
coffee in the morning). Disappointed to say the least, as we love
area of Omaha, great shops with ivy-covered brick storefronts including a
candy store for Heidi
We can't resist trying on hats, and we are
serious customers too. Glenn did buy the Dorfman Pacific Co. (Scala)
off-white Panama hat. They sold whole cow hides, jackets and many
other great leather products.
The restaurant & clothing storefronts were completely shrouded in
Now the Durham Museum
Union Station operated the railroad from
1931-1971. It served countless American servicemen during WWII, with
a 24 hour restaurant, news & magazine stand, barbershop, taxi stand,
telegraph office, hospital and traveler's aid office. The Durham
Museum undertook the renovation of the building to its former glory,
re-opening in 1997. The building is considered the Museum's largest
Historic building, great to view inside &
out. "Dedicated by the railways of Omaha to the service,
comfort and convenience of the people". We are glad they have
renovated this beautiful building.
Displays of Railroad memorabilia and traveling
exhibit Tyrannosaurus Rex named Sue made it doubly interesting
INSIDE UNION STATION
Phenomenal, words do not describe the art deco
motif and grandeur of this place. Photos of ceilings, walls and
grand spaces in the Suzanne and Walter Scott Great Hall. Each
lighting fixture weighs more than a ton.
Cast figures (local sculptor John Labja, made
of clay then hard resin) make the building come
alive...with a little help from Glenn
In 1946, 64 steam engines huged through the
station, transporting 10,000 passengers daily
For show only, with sculpted figures
Hilarious, HALF A MAN! - guess they saved on
this statue, since most people viewed it from the other side
At the old-fashioned counter right in
the main hall of Union Station, Heidi had a Chocolate Egg Cream soda
(seltzer with milk & chocolate syrup), yum!
Glenn had always wanted to see the exhibit,
and we happened to miss it in numerous cities in the past. Now,
we've done it! Sue is 42 feet long and 12 feet tall at the
hips. From the Cretaceous strata in South Dakota to the U.S. Courts,
and finally to the world. This cast was created by the Field Museum
MODEL TRAINS, HISTORIC COLLECTION
TRAIN DIORAMA, this was absolutely huge.
O Scale Model train has layout with a depot
and diorama that represents Union Pacific's double track main line from
Omaha to Ogden during the 1950's.
The Outdoor theater section was my favorite.
FULL SIZE RAILROAD CARS, ALL
We walked through the restored train cars, it
was like we could sit down and just ride off. Beautiful dining
car. 1st class and coach cars, sleeping berths. Amazing.
These are the train cars & locomotives on
Union Pacific 1243 Steam
25559 Caboose (1962)
Cornhuster Club Observation Car (1924)
Pacific 1202 Pullman National Command Sleeper (1956)
Pacific 2986 Lounge Car (1949)
& Council Bluffs Railway & Bridge Co. Streetcar (1940's)
SCULPTURE (Herb Mignery)
A gift to the people of Omaha from the
Mid-America Council - Boy Scouts of America, Heritage Patrons, 1984.
"Tomorrow's heritage of leadership is planted today in the minds of
our young people, through the ideals of scouting".
Prime Rib & Seafood
is KING - all parts of the cow including oxtail and tongue)
ORIGINAL STEAKHOUSE SINCE 1922
charm & ambience thanks to the Frank Kawa family
Leather map of U.S. showing location of
interior, lovely mural
Using a $100 bill we won at the casino.
Schmidt" with Jack Nicholson- there is a scene
film of this restaurant of Warren Schmidt's retirement dinner.
exit doors with bronze of
stayed at Harrah's in Omaha NE this night
6, July 2
"STOCKYARDS" facility with iron cows running out front
Burgers, Steaks, Phillies, Gyros
Across from the zoo was his wonderful signage
& gorilla family
DOORLY ZOO & AQUARIUM
were curious what this huge dome was. It is part of a Zoo Park in
Omaha on 10th Street. We admit we were tired and did not go in,
though after reading about it, we wish we had.
This Desert Dome is the largest indoor desert,
also the largest glazed geodesic dome in the world. It is Omaha's #1
& Clark and the Corps of Discovery
on side of the Veteran's building (13th & L Streets) in Tekamah NE
POLE TO LURE MAILBOX
Kellogg's Farm, North of Tekamah NE
Americana at its best
against a boat, in the front yard of a home on
Highway 20 East, near Jackson NE
of interesting WINDMILLS
in a yard near Willis NE
"PROUD TO BE AMERICAN" Mural on side
KELLER PHARMACY & SODA FOUNTAIN (circa
"Flavor Burst" soft serve ice cream,
new to us! The flavor edges the outside of the ice cream. We
enjoyed the historic building & old fashioned atmosphere. More
on the business here, including "goop" sundaes, also known as
"scum sundaes" invented here though no longer made (too bad, I
would be their first customer):
The history of Ponca is interesting.
Founded in 1856, development slowed during the Civil War and the
grasshopper plague in the 1870's. Once the railroad was established,
it flourished again. In the 1890's, it was known for one of the
finest one-mile thoroughbred racetracks in the Midwest.
Home of the smallest City Hall in the U.S.
Statue of Liberty and American flag at the turnoff for Maskell
leading to the City Hall, "Mayor Wally Benson & Linda", and
"John Maskell Homestead, 1874"
Yup, sure is small. 67 Residents.
Bridge to Yankton SD. The Missouri River
is the reason Yankton is in existence, as the town thrived due to the
steamboat industry, then waned due to the railroads and then a flood in
1881. Yankton history includes ties to Lewis & Clark, General
Custer, "the Culligan Man" was born here, and NBC Anchorman Tom
Brokaw went to high school here. Now a huge dam controls the waters
and has generated plenty of tourism dollars.
The main road is named "Tom Brokaw
Great historic buildings.
always laughs to see these tall sprayers on the road
This is hay & corn country. We were
amazed that the farmers are allowed to bale the grass growing right next
to the highways and in the medians as well. Good use of space!
Historic church St. Wenceslaus Parish,
in the town of Tabor SD. "Vitame vas" is Czech for
"We Welcome You". This is known as a predominantly Czech
We would have loved to have been there
in time for their festival in June.
Grotto on the grounds of the St. Wenceslaus church, is
"Our Lady Fatima Shrine"
Great information on the meaning of this and
the other shrines and windows on the church & property:
chicken statue in Parkston SD
in Mitchell SD, huge steer statue
loves those Budweiser murals! He used to own 11 Clydesdales.
A real tourist attraction we couldn't resist
(and to keep a promise to friend Kathy). Besides the spectacular
onion dome style and being folk art, it is an amazing building because the
walls of all parts of it are made with real CORN and GRAINS.
They strip & rebuild the murals every year
with new corn and a different theme. Over the summer, 3,000 bushels
of rye, oat heads and sour dock are tied in bundles & attached.
When the new crop is ready, about 275,000 ears of corn are sawed in half
lengthwise & nailed to the building following patterns created by
local artists. So, it is always a work in progress. You can
watch this redecorating process being completed. You
can see a side view where the sheaves make the walls 3D. It is a
folk art wonder on the prairie of South Dakota.
Even the interior amphitheater is decorated
with murals using corn. Today there was a craft show on the main
floor, which can also be used for basketball games, etc. The smell
of popcorn is all through the building as they sell it right at the
The building above is actually the 3rd Corn
Palace. Here's a vintage photo of the Corn Palace which is
inside the lobby
The first building was built in 1892. It
was meant to display the settlers' agricultural bounty to prove the
fertility of the soil and attract immigrant farmers to settle here.
For more info, visit their website
Bridge over the Missouri River, a welcome
sight after not seeing water or many hills across the plains states
spent the night in Murdo, SD
7 (July 3)
WOOD CARVING MUSEUM
spent the night in Sturgis SD
Click to Page 1