2011 featured 9 sites.

Downtown Menomonie

I had the pleasure of taking a tour of the sights and sounds of downtown Menomonie. We explored the many local shops and restaurants, learned of local attractions, and discovered the beauty of the majestic Mabel Tainter theatre. After a busy day at school, finding things to do for leisure will not be a problem. I know I will be spending a lot of time at La Dee Da, the quaint little gift shop filled with knick-knacks, student made jewelry, and locally crafted gifts. The tour of downtown Menomonie lifted the stress of uncertainty I was feeling being in a new town. With these places to go, I feel more at home and comfortable with my surroundings. My experience at Stout is sure to be a great one. -Meghan L.

While talking amongst a group of friends one started off his sentence with, “When I get back to real life”. Although we were all in “real life” we all understood what he meant. Your first couple days of college it seems like you are under a bubble which consists of only the campus.  Today while taking the first steps out of that bubble it felt like we were in a whole different place. Menomonie may be small but it has some pretty interesting places. A lot of the restaurants and markets have locally grown produce which I found awesome because I believe in supporting the “little people”. There were also a couple of cool bike shops because biking is one of the easiest ways to get around town. My favorite places were the Mabel Theater and a shop called La Dee Dah. Although they are completely different types of places they were both very unique. The Mabel Theater is a theater that had a lot of history behind it and has a pretty neat art gallery. La Dee Dah is this little shop that sells homemade jewelry, picture frames, candles, etc. There is also a movie theater and a couple of quaint coffee shops. So if you ever want to get out of the college bubble downtown Menomonie can be your escape. -Julia K.

Seeing Menomonie as more than a campus or college was quite the experience.  Being able to view all the stores and sites that are available to both student body and public persons was a fantastic idea.  Knowing that there is a Co-op and nice restaurants nearby is wonderful to know so that I am not limited to just being stranded on the campus.  The theater house was quite a sight and knowing the ghost stories and history behind it made it all the more interesting.  Visiting the bike shops was a good thing because now I know where to pick up emergency equipment if my bike would break down or if I wanted to purchase items for disk golfing and what-not. The antique store was very cool and a sweet place to find objects for dorm rooms.  Discovering all the cafes and ‘hang-out’ spots was a plus so that I can start to spend some of my time off campus without having to use my car.  The best part was learning that a little piece of home was just within walking distance of this nice little town, Menomonie Wisconsin. -Ryan K.

When I think of a small town, home comes to mind. Going to college, I was thinking I would lose and miss that small town feel that I had grew up with and loved. My group for city as text was able to walk downtown and I was surprised; the people, sights, sounds, and smell even, all reminded me of home. The businesses lining the streets all had a very friendly and home-like atmosphere. That feeling I previously thought only existed in my hometown; I felt everywhere. It was refreshing to know that I wasn’t the only one who had an experience like this on our little excursion around town. There is also so much history in Menomonie, from the lake and all the changes it has seen, to The Memorial, to Stout itself. I really enjoyed our trip and learning this new area. I cannot wait to get out and explore some more for myself. -Jordan L.

I had a great time on my tour of downtown Menomonie.  My favorite part was exploring the Mabel Tainter Theater.  As I walked under the stone carvings and through the door, I felt as if I was taking a step back in time.  It was like nothing I had ever seen before, from the wooden seats to the huge drapes and window seats.  It also amazes me that they still perform plays there, even though it is a memorial to Mabel Tainter and is so old.  I would definitely suggest visiting the Mabel Tainter if you ever have some spare time.   It’s an experience that I will never forget. -Katherine K.

Our group explored the downtown area of Menomonie. We got to spend a while in the Mabel Tainter Theatre, which was beautiful with its antique, artsy decor. The rest of our afternoon was taken up by looking in various shops along Menomonie’s streets. Places like The Raw Deal, Acoustic Cafe, and Menomonie Market Co-op were especially impressive in the way they utilized local produce and natural ingredients. In almost every store we went into, there was some sign of local flavor, whether it was homemade jewelry or art created by students at UW-Stout. All in all, exploring downtown was a great experience for me because it gave me the sense that being a community and using local resources is very important to the people of Menomonie. –Isabel L.

What I found most interesting about the trip was all of the organic, healthy, and locally grown food available. College students don’t get much of that, and they should know more about it. I like The Raw Deal and how it sells raw food because cooking takes away nutrition. Plus, it’s a nice place to relax, do homework, and have some coffee. Even Legacy Chocolates has fresh chocolate without the harsh chemicals. I’m impressed with the town’s style of trying to be healthy and more organic. Even the La Dee Dah shop has locally-made items. That was my favorite stop and a great place to buy gifts. -Kensie L.

Coming to Menomonie, I expected a small town with not much to do except for the occasional coffee shop, grocery store, and a small clothing outlet.  However, by touring downtown Menomonie, I discovered that that was not the case.  Out of all the places that we toured, La Dee Dah was my favorite.  It was a cute little outlet that had everything from jewelry made out of silverware to your basic picture frames and books.  What was most inspiring to me was a sign that said “Spending Time with Friends and Family…Priceless.”  This just goes to show that you should live your life to the fullest and realize that your family and friends are everything and that they do not come with a price tag. –Brianna K.

Menomonie is not just the dinky little College town that many may think it is. It holds many places in it with rich history as well as new sensations and experiences that everyone can relate to. On our tour the first few stores we dropped by were locally owned and had a comforting feeling to them. The bike shops are perfect for this town with their many commuters that utilize bikes. The next major stop on our tour was Mable Tainter Theater, which I would have to say was my favorite stop. We took a self-tour of the establishment and found the building to hold rich details of its past. The most interesting part of the building was the ghost stories that it held. Of course as we read they did explain that the sandstone has a phenomenon of storing small bits of electrical currents or other sources of energy. But I still believe the place could have supernatural connections. The rest of our tour led us to places like the Acoustic Cafe and Legacy Chocolates. I very much liked the fact that one can receive a free truffle on your birthday at Legacy Chocolates.  So many other places happened to catch my eyes, but maybe I’ll just have to show you sometime. -Wang L.

I am here at UW-Stout. The campus has a lot to offer with many activities and more fun to experience, but the city of Menomonie is just right around the corner with much to offer. Our main stop of the day was the Mabel Tainter Theatre. I was amazed, as I’m sure my group was as well, to see the vast ornate carvings, curtains, and woodworking. Students often do not venture far off campus, so it was interesting to see places that are worth making the hike. The theatre was like stepping back in time. It was good to see that some of the buildings from years ago are still being taken care of and cherished in the community. As well as touring the Mabel Tainter Theatre, our group wandered in and out of bookstores, antique stores, eateries, and shops. This tour was interesting as well as informative about local businesses that might have otherwise gone undiscovered by us students. -Katerina M.

Farmers Market & Stepping Stones

Even while walking through Menomonie, it quickly becomes apparent that there is a lot of history and meaning behind what we see. What once was a town devoted to the logging and brick-making industries has now effectively been “reprogrammed” to serve the purposes of UW – Stout. Old houses that may have once been home to lumberjacks are now used as fraternities and sororities, the shiny Greek symbols attached to weathered and peeling wood. While walking further, you can see where newer homes have been constructed, in indication of how Menomonie has expanded since its founding. At the farmer’s market, local vendors comprise most of the stalls, and these vendors in turn are made up of individual families. It gives a sense of community, to know that these are local people, providing the products of their own labor to the rest of us that live here. The food itself is good, and the care given to growing the moderate quantity available definitely shows. Stepping Stones was also a sign of community in Menomonie. While helping to support the homeless and others in need with food, shelter, and other opportunities is already an admirable cause, there is more to it than that. Much of the items available for purchase, the manpower for their community projects, and even the money that funds their activities comes from local people and businesses. This is indeed a caring, close-knit community.

– Kyle F.

Mine was the group numbered 3 and we were led by Dr. Thomas Pearson. We walked around the town and visited the farmer’s market and an organization called Stepping Stones. Along the way we passed a Greek fraternity party in a local park and we passed a lot of old buildings including a creepy, rundown, abandoned school. At the farmer’s market we talked to the venders who were all very nice and I bought a Zestar apple. There were the most amazing fruits there including apples and raspberries and there was a wide variety of garden vegetables. The Stepping Stones’ office building is about 3 blocks from the farmer’s market co-op. What Stepping Stones does is they provide housing, food, and other services for homeless or poverty stricken in the Menomonie area. Heidi told us all about their volunteer work and services. Overall it was an enjoyable and educational experience.

– David F.

Today in the University Honors Program, I had the unique opportunity of exploring the city of Menomonie and learning more about two rather diverse and perhaps shadowed industries: Farming and Social Services. First, my group went to the Menomonie Farmer’s Market, featuring over 30 vendors selling a wide variety of farm fresh produce, meats, and even hot foods (Farm Fresh Atlas, 12). The most notable aspect of the market was the extraordinary quality and care put into crop growth. In speaking with Wilson Mills, owner of Circle K Orchard in Beldenville, I learned that he employs Integrated Pest Management Systems to ensure the long lasting integrity of his food. In all, the Menomonie Farmer’s Market is an attraction you will not want to miss. Our second stop brought us to the Stepping Stones of Dunn County. The non-profit organization’s tag line says it all: Food, Shelter, Support. Heidi Hooten, Shelter Coordinator at Stepping Stones, explained the ever growing demands placed on her organization and its resources. “Dunn County is the fourth poorest county in the state,” says Hooten, explaining why such a high demand is exerted against her facilities. Stepping Stones is always looking for more volunteers to staff their two main facilities: the shelter itself and a local food pantry. In addition, Stepping Stones is looking to open a brand new Warming Shelter. The shelter, to be operated at St. Joseph’s Church in Menomonie, will offer short term housing for anyone wishing to avoid the ever colder winter nights. I am very glad I had the opportunity to further explore Menomonie, and I am certain it has helped make me feel a little more at home in what used to be a foreign city.

– Joshua D.

As an honor student, we were welcomed into Menomonie by taking a tour of the community. We split into several different groups and visited many of the main locations throughout the town. The group I took part in went to the local farmers market and Stepping Stones of Dunn County, which is a food pantry. At these sites, we learned numerous facts about the area.  The farmers market is filled with many assorted fruits and vegetables; it is also very promising to find that everything there was completely organic and grown within a fifty-mile radius of the area. The crops there are typically grown by different cultures; they tend to be very good and hard working at what they do as well. This location shows both variety and multicultural aspects, which says a lot about the community as a whole.  Food pantries are also filled with many different people from countless different backgrounds. At Stepping Stones, we were informed of the nonprofit organizations that they offer. Menomonie has a poverty level of 15%, which is extremely high; it’s the fourth highest poverty stricken area in Wisconsin. Because of this, they offer a food pantry, where tickets are needed to get food for each month (each person in a family receives $200 a month, which is just enough food for the average person to get by). Other operations that Stepping Stones runs are hotels and temporary homes, and for the “overflow” a warming shelter is offered for the night. What most found astonishing was the amount of people on the waiting list for a home (which a family can only stay in for thirty days as they receive help in numerous ways); it is an eighteen-month wait. Menomonie is a small community with a lot going on. It is filled with beautiful scenery along with people who just want to help.

– Cheyenne D.

Through my participation in the “City as Text” Freshman Honors activity I made quite a few observations pertaining to the city of Menomonie. I made several of these observations while walking through a residential area of the city. First, I discovered that there is a dramatic difference of a home of a college student(s) versus that of a yearlong, permanent resident. It was fairly easy to distinguish the residence of a college student(s), as it (generally speaking) is not in great condition. Many of the homes were not visually appealing. Most had peeling paint, an utter lack of outside landscaping or decorative touches to add to the beauty of the structure, and an unkempt lawn. Upon entering the full-time, permanent residential area you immediately saw landscaping, decorative touches, and well cared for homes and lawns. Essentially the difference between the two residential “classes” was the difference of well maintained and simply a roof above one’s head. While we continued on our exploration of the city, we stopped by the local farmer’s market. What struck me the most while at the farmer’s market was the nationality of many of the vendors. Most of the vendors looked to be Asian. I was not willing to ask them personally what nationality they were, as I thought that may be rude, but after asking a fellow vendor I was told that most were Hmong and Vietnamese. This struck me as intriguing because the city of Menomonie is not a large city (and thus I wouldn‘t think the city would offer a whole lot of diversity). Having such a concentration of this group of people in this sort of business is interesting and worth looking into. Even the lunch area at the farmer’s market catered to this group of people, serving food like egg rolls, spring rolls, and fried rice. Lastly, what I found interesting and saddening at the same time (while at the Stepping Stones food pantry) was the large percentage of homeless in Dunn County. I was informed that Dunn County has the 4th largest homeless percentage in the state of Wisconsin. I found this news very depressing but was pleased to find out that there are programs and organizations that are taking great strides to reduce this rate. I really had no idea how many outreach programs were available for the aid of the homeless, poverty stricken, or those simply in need of a helping hand. Today, all in all, was a really an eye-opening experience as to how much Menomonie has to offer. Yes, it may be a college-town, but it truly has so much more to offer and to explore.

– Amanda D.

During “City of Text” on September 10th my group walked to the Farmers Market and Stepping Stones. It was a great time walking around the town of Menomonie and seeing all of the changes that have happened over the years. There is a large change from the college campus to the residential living areas. We first arrived at the Farmers Market; here there was a wide range of food including fruits and veggies. There was a wide range of ethnicity selling these foods also. Everyone there was from around a fifty mile radius and came to the fairgrounds everyday to sell their organic grown foods. After the Farmers Market we walk a couple blocks over to Stepping Stones Food Shelf. Here we were shown around the new facility and told about the volunteering. They have a great way of giving out to those in need. They are soon going to be setting up a warming house where the homeless can go for the night to get a small meal and have a warm place to stay. They can always use volunteers to help out in the warming house and shelter.

– Shayla G.

When people come to the city of Menomonie, there are many places, people, and opportunities that are just waiting to be discovered. I had the fortune of seeing a couple of these hidden gems early on Saturday afternoon as a part of the Honors Orientation. Myself, along with a group of about ten to twelve other students, got to travel to the Menomonie fairgrounds to see a farmer’s market that is open twice a week. This was a great experience. I, in my short lifetime, have personally not been to a farmer’s market, so seeing how the small fruit and vegetable stands were run, and how close to home the products were grown was nice to know. After spending about thirty minutes at the market, our group went over to Stepping Stones, a food pantry located in Menomonie. A tour was given to us, and we were then briefed about how the pantry works, who is eligible to receive products from Stepping Stones, along with the warming shelter that they will be putting up in November with the help of St. Joe’s church. The afternoon was a great chance to see different parts of town, as well as an opportunity to talk and get to know some of my classmates a little better, too.

– Zachary, D.

Being a freshman in college in your first week is super busy and full of excitement.  Since I come from a small town it’s a change of pace coming to Menomonie where everything from fast food to Walmart is within walking distance of the campus, so to take time out of my day to walk to the farmers market was really nice.  On the walk there we walked past an old school house that looked abandoned and it made you think about the times when kids used to play in that school yard and it makes you wonder what they learned about.  Even though the farmers market was small it was bursting with color and life.  Walking past the booths looking at all the fresh fruit and vegetables that people put their hard work into growing, it was almost like everything that they were selling there had its own little story.  Food doesn’t just end up on supermarket shelves by itself and its interesting to see the people behind the food we eat and talk to them about how they grow their crops.  The Stepping Stones Food Pantry was also like stepping into a different world.  We take for granted having food, shelter, and clothes every day, the things that other people go without.  It makes you reconsider your wants and needs: do you really need that new pair of shoes?  Do you really need to drive your car when you could easily walk there?  We take these things for granted, but the volunteers at the food pantry see people just getting by and they help them as much as possible.  It’s nice to know that there are people in this world that care more about bettering someone else’s life than their own.  This whole experience was an eye opener and showed me a side of Menomonie that I never knew existed.

– Taylor G.

No one knew what to expect. All we knew was that our destination was the Farmer’s Market followed by Stepping Stones. As we began leaving campus, we were to question essentially everything. Close to UW Stout’s campus, house after house was rented by college students. They were unkempt, obvious that they housed students. The further we walked, the tidier the lots appeared. These homes were owned by more permanent individuals, those who appreciate Menomonie for what it is. Finally, we arrived at the Farmer’s Market. All of the produce was harvested within a 50 mile radius. Not only was that an interesting aspect of the Farmer’s Market, but the venders were from all different cultures. After our stop at the Farmer’s Market we worked our way towards Stepping Stones. To my surprise, Stepping Stones was a food pantry. We were given a tour and a synopsis of what all goes on there. On this little trip, I learned a lot about Menomonie, many things ranging from the poverty stricken population to Menomonie’s fresh produce. Each of us examined our surroundings and learned to look at it with a new point of view. All in all, it was a day well spent.

– Seneca D.

Attending the City as Text orientation really benefited me to learn a little more about this area.  To start off simple I never knew that there was a farmer’s market near here and also how poor Menomonie’s economy and unemployment rate was.  Then when you look deeper into each visit there is to that I found.  You can read an ad for the market or pick up a pamphlet for Stepping Stones, but you get a lot more from actually going to these places.  At the Farmer’s Market there were many different cultures represented; from the typical American farmer to families of Hmong immigrants.  Stepping Stones triggered a slightly different reaction from me.  To hear from a woman that actually works there and experiences helping these people first hand.  She puts so much emotion into her job that it is almost inspiring to potential volunteers and appeal to them to volunteer themselves.  I thought this was powerful to learn about.  I’m glad we got to have this experience.

– Robert D.

My exploration of Menomonie entailed adventuring through the Farmer’s Market and Stepping Stones Food Pantry; each being important parts of the community here. The Farmer’s Market revealed the multiple cultures and identities in the surrounding area of Menomonie along with the wonderful organic choices that the Market has to offer. The Food Pantry made me more culturally aware of the booming 15% poverty rate in this 15,000 citizen town!

– Chalsey F. 

Menomonie Churches Near Campus

Around Stout it could be easy to be a face lost in the crowd. Having the ability to see all
that the city of Menomonie offers based on religion is very beneficial. The
mass amount of religious options makes living at Stout feel like home. Within
college some may become lost in their faith, and it is nice to know Stout is
here to help that not happen. With the many different options and mission
groups, you will never feel alone.

–         Raelynn S.

It was quickly apparent as we toured the various churches around the Menomonie area that there is a very lively Christian community awaiting the Stout students. With at least 6
different parishes only a short walk away from campus, there are plenty of
convenient opportunities for student ministry, fellowship, and even free meals. The majority of these buildings display beautiful stained-glass windows dating
as much as 120 years, and two of the congregations themselves are celebrating
150 years! A tour of these sites is well worth it to any student interested in
Christian community or even the history of Menomonie.

–         Alex S.

The thing that struck me about all the area churches was the friendly rivalry they shared. It’s an old joke that Christian denominations are at odds, and it hasn’t always been funny, but today in Menomonie there appears to be a communal attitude. Several churches have
changed hands over the years, and many share architectural motifs, not to
mention doctrine. Throughout the day, Catholics dispelled popular misconceptions about their worship held by Protestants, while the Lutherans
acknowledged the strong stylistic debt they owe to Rome. Overall, I found the
friendly demeanor shared by area leaders a refreshing contrast to the sometimes
stuffy, competitive attitude that can exist between denominations.

–         Shane R

The tour of the churches of Menomonie during the City as Text orientation pushed me
to explore a more three-dimensional definition of Menomonie as a city. Until
that point, I had only thought of it as a “college town” and everything that
that term implies, both positively and negatively. But as I’m sure it was
intended to, the trip from church to church revealed another side of the city.
The sheer number of programs that the church provides paint a picture of
Menomonie’s spiritual side, which challenges the notion of a typical “college
town”. I was also impressed at the number of outreach programs designed to
reach college students, including free meals. These programs not only feed
students physically, but spiritually as well, and show that the churches and
the city itself are investing in the city in more ways than one.

–         Hannah S

The churches in Menomonie each had an interesting historical background. Some were over one hundred years old and others had basements converted into retro coffee shops. I
found the religious variety and settings of the churches to be welcoming and rich
in their community values.

–         Amanda S.

I enjoyed learning about all the history behind churches in the area. I find it very interesting. I also liked learning about the Himalayan house, it’s very different than the usual religions represented in the area.

–         Sarah S.

Menomonie has a variety of churches aimed towards people of all different denominations and each church provides a history in the area, religious outreach, and outreach programs or events aimed towards students.

–         Elizabeth S.

At the churches it was cool to look at the stain glass and learn what it stands for. One of the
churches has been open for 150 years.

–         Courtney S

North Menomonie: Walmart and Goodwill

Visiting the local Menomonie Wal-Mart was not the most exciting thing in the world but I definitely learned a lot! I’m a business administrations major so all the marketing strategies that Wal-Mart use stuck out to me. The manager giving us the tour told us about product placement, how they choose target markets, store displays, multiple placements of products, and special display units. The special display units were the most interesting to me because we learned they switched them out every two weeks. We also learned that while special display units are used for a product that it boosts sales significantly for that product and nearby products

Claire Q

Even though I have been to many Goodwills, my trip to the Menomonie Goodwill was a completely new experience. Not only did I get a glimpse of the stockroom, but I learned about the strong relationship this Goodwill has the community of Menomonie. 90% of the donations given to this Goodwill are from people living in the community. In fact, sometimes the problem arises of having too many items than they have room for, being that the store was quite small. However, in spite of their size constraints, it was much cleaner and better organized than any Goodwill I have ever seen. I learned of their system to keep the apparel in a rotation so they don’t keep items in the store that are not going to sell. After 5 weeks being on the racks, the unsold clothes are either recycled or sold to other organizations to give to 3rd world countries. Overall, I was impressed with the impact one small store in Menomonie has both locally and globally.

Madeline F

During our visit to Goodwill and Walmart, I was surprised at how much I learned. During our visit, we got to tour the stores and get a sense of how they run things. Despite the differences between the stores, such as the profit and size, there were still some common characteristics between the two. Both stores mentioned how they give back to the community. Goodwill stated how they have different programs to help out, such as donating money to the local high school and senior center. They also offer job services to people getting out of jail who want to reenter society. I was surprised to learn how much Walmart gives back to the community. They make donations to not only the high school, but here at Stout too! Even though they are both widespread businesses, I still could get a sense of them being unique to the community

Kara J

I really liked visiting Walmart and Goodwill because it gave us an inside look at how they help the Menomonie community. Goodwill especially was very oriented towards giving back. The fact that they ship extra donations to other Goodwills in the area and even send items off to be recycled was very interesting. Both of the stores help out the community more than I originally knew, and I am glad they are so involved!

Averie  R.

Our tour consisted of going to visit the Goodwill and Wal-Mart. These places offered huge contrast in how each store has its own philosophy in running their respective business and how each gives back to the community. At the Wal-Mart in town, donations are given to the local high-school and college in the form of tens of thousands of dollars each year; providing funding each year. Goodwill, on the other hand, is given donations from all over the community and sells them back at reasonable prices to those that need the products. Every year, the Goodwill in town is given thousands of articles of clothing, electronics, books, and other re-sellable items, which go back into the community. This is all done without profits; instead the money is given to countries in need, with clothes being recycled. Both shops give back to the community in their own way.

Travis R

We went to Walmart and they took us in back where they receive their shipments.  I found out that they receive 10 shipments per day just for their food department.  They go through the food so fast that they have already sold goods that they haven’t even paid for.  There were also some really awesome murals in the entrances of the employee only section.

Austin R

What I found most interesting during the “City as Text” excursion was the similarities in giving back to the community between Goodwill and Wal-Mart.  Goodwill works very closely with the special education classes at Menomonie High School by using money they have earned to help move these programs along.  Wal-Mart, on the other hand, has donated numerous meals to those who need them and has donated $50,000 to local schools, including UW-Stout.  Both companies place a high value on education, and seek to promote it in the area.  Although Goodwill did not give any exact statistics on how much they donate, it is likely that it is less than Wal-Mart and by a large margin as well.  Even so, whatever Goodwill does donate definitely helps out and so does the money given by Wal-Mart.  These are two admirable companies in terms of giving back to the community.”

Zach R

When people think of giving back to their community, many of us think of Goodwill. Goodwill use their stores to give job experience to people who would otherwise be unemployed; generate large amounts of clothing and shoes for third-world countries; and recycle as much unsellable material as they can salvage. However, giving back isn’t exclusive to non-profits. I was surprised to hear that Wal-Mart is community-oriented. They donate to high school organizations, and even to UW Stout. They even have a sector of their business designated specifically to distributing household necessities such as food, water, clothing, toiletries and laundry detergent in the event of natural disaster, like Hurricane Katrina, where Wal-Mart was proactive in providing aid for the victims. Some give Wal-Mart grief because they believe whatever the media tells them, but few complain about a source of charity and hope during a critical time of need for homeless families.

Andrew R

Our group went to Goodwill and Walmart today. It was definitely an interesting experience. I enjoyed the trip to Goodwill much more than the trip to Walmart. Walmart, to me, was very pompous and self-promoting. All the manager seemed to be interested in was bragging about how great their company was as well as trying to get us to buy things. One particular incident was when we went to the electronics section and their idea of a great game night idea was to organize a tournament of Madden NFL. No good games like Halo or Super Smash Brothers; they decided on a football game. So, I guess Walmart is just as detached from society as I thought. Goodwill, on the other hand, seemed to be more interested in promoting their charity work and the fact that they are a nonprofit organization. They seemed to want to show us how they did things rather than get us to buy things. I found Goodwill to be much friendlier and humble, which made it a much more enjoyable place to be.

John R.

“City as Text” was an interesting experience. I was part of a group that visited and toured Goodwill and Wal-Mart. I found Goodwill to be very interesting, just like some will say they found Wal-Mart to be. I had never seen the inside workings of Goodwill and know I have. I never realized the work they had to do after someone drops off a donation. The local Goodwill here in Menomonie receives clothing from the community and uses what they can. Clothes, shoes, and other items that are not in good condition are sent to third world countries or to recycling plants to be recycled into other products. Goodwill does a lot for the community. They use their non-profitable business to create jobs and offer opportunities for people to build their resume. Overall I found the experience to be interesting and educational.

Lucy P

Menomonie in Text was a fun and interesting way to get to know the town we now call home. I along with the rest of group seven ventured across town by bus and toured the local Goodwill and Walmart. It turned out that the two stores were similar in some ways, but in the end their focuses and business strategies are different. Our tour began with Goodwill, a well-known nonprofit organization.  We learned that the store only uses profits to pay for wages and utilities, while the rest go towards the community.  Most of the goods are those that are donated by the community itself and are then resold or recycled. The second and last stop of our tour was Walmart. There we learned that the company profits over 400 billion dollars annually. Last year Walmart donated over 95,000 meals to the Menomonie and Dunn County area. Although both companies are similar in the way that they donate greatly to the community, they differ in their ways of business strategies were Goodwill is nonprofit and Walmart is a profiting company.

Emily P

For our “city as text” experience, we went to Walmart and Goodwill. While these stores seem fairly normal, there is a lot more to them than meets the eye. I learned the most about Goodwill today, so I will focus on that. I always thought Goodwill was just a store full of used things. I’d been there before, and knew they provided excellent Halloween costumes. We met with the store’s manager, and I learned that Goodwill is actually a non-profit organization, and besides paying their employees, all their profit goes to community outreach programs. Goodwill also helps people with disabilities, or who have just been released from prison by providing them with job training and work experience. Goodwill is also a large part of the Menomonie community, where they receive the majority of their donations. The store was very well organized, and had a wide variety of both new and used goods. I enjoyed learning about Goodwill, and am glad to know about how they help the community.

Danielle R

Just got back from our adventure called “City as Text.”  Our group toured Wal-Mart and Goodwill. The main difference between the two stores is that Wal-Mart is out to make a profit while Goodwill is nonprofit.  They took us “behind the scenes” and let us see the warehouses and loading docks.  We learned that the Goodwill store in Menomonie generates approximately $3,000 each day on an average day and up to $5,000 a day during their busiest times (which includes the current season, Halloween). They also told us that whatever items were not quality enough to be sold in the store would be recycled and reused if possible. I think it was a cool experience that not everyone gets to have.

Jamie P

Hoffman Hills

Hoffman Hills Tower

Tower at the top of Hoffman Hills State Recreation Area

I have never been to Hoffman Hills before but I was able to appreciate its unique beauty from the moment that I stepped out of that yellow bus. It was beautiful in a way that only nature can provide, beauty that is always changing. You will never see the exact same view because everyday something is different. Leaves change color, plants grow, and the world rotates; forever changing the way a beautiful view will look. Hoffman Hills provides anybody who takes the time a once in a lifetime experience. From the tower you can see for miles and every visit will open your eyes to the beauty of a changing world.
-Anna D.

My group and I went on an adventure to Hoffman Hills. We walked trails and climbed the Greg Schubert Memorial Tower. We had started climbing the tower after we had walked the “most difficult” section of the trail, and the stairs seemed to just keep going up, up and up. Each time we reached a level I thought to myself “Finally! The top!”, but it wasn’t truly the top until we reached it. The view from the top of the tower was amazing; the land seemed to go on for forever, just like the stairs. It was so wonderful and rewarding to finally be at the top! I thought about our futures and how they were similar to our adventure; we have to work for our view on the top and for success. Working hard for something that is worthwhile (like working hard for our futures or to the top of a tower) is a very rewarding experience.
-Meghan B.

My group and I went on an adventure to Hoffman Hills. We walked trails and climbed the Greg Schubert Memorial Tower. We had started climbing the tower after we had walked the “most difficult” section of the trail, and the stairs seemed to just keep going up, up and up. Each time we reached a level I thought to myself “Finally! The top!”, but it wasn’t truly the top until we reached it. The view from the top of the tower was amazing; the land seemed to go on for forever, just like the stairs. It was so wonderful and rewarding to finally be at the top! I thought about our futures and how they were similar to our adventure; we have to work for our view on the top and for success. Working hard for something that is worthwhile (like working hard for our futures or to the top of a tower) is a very rewarding experience.
-Erin C.

The City as Text trip to Hoffman Hill was a very memorable experience; it was a great way to get to know some of the other members of the Honors program and to see the hidden beauty of Menomonie. The walk to the tower was absolutely gorgeous; I took a lot of pictures along the way of the rolling landscape and natural beauty of the land. Along the way we found a small camp site with an old fashion water pump where we stopped to rest. We also walked to the tower which overlooks miles of woods and farm land. I am afraid of heights, but going to the top of that tower was very empowering. The view was amazing and something I will not forget.
-Megan B.

While I was up on top of the Greg Schubert Memorial Tower at Hoffman Hills, I was just thinking about moments in life. It was so peaceful up on top of the tower, dead quiet. Just to take it all in, exhale really slow and be in that moment. Seeing all the green hills and flat farms against the pure blue sky. It was nice to just stand back and reflect about that single moment passing by. To not constantly think about what’s happening next was a nice change of pace. The long climb up was worth it for that solitary moment.
-Jamie B.

In its entirety, I found this UHP meeting extremely beneficial. Not only was it informative on a historical and natural note, but it was an excellent workout as well! Hoffman Hills is a great place to hike and explore. On our nature walk up hill after hill, we were privileged enough to see and physically experience a hand-pumped water fountain, (which was EXTREMELY) beneficial in such hot weather. A few friends and I passed where the four townships come together as well! That’s something I’ve never seen before and in all honesty was pretty exciting to me personally. I’m glad to have gone on this field trip because if it wasn’t for that, I don’t think I would have experienced what I did today!
-Kaitlyn B.

Farmland surronds the Hoffmann Hills, it inhibits the natural beauty of the surronding area. Up on the observation deck, I thought about what the indians would see. Unrefined, natural beauty, maybe. I still saw beauty of farming and agriculture that supports our economy.
-Anna C.

The adventure was calm and relaxing until the journey back. I ran down the hill and nearly fell a couple times with a pizza box in my hands. Today I learned that these nature walks are a little too calm for me especially during these exciting years of my life, I want to live while I can and reflect on my down time. I saw some nice scenery at Hoffman Hills but didn’t learn too much except for the tower has 97 steps. I want to feel like this adventure gave me a new perspective or an additional view on my goals, however I feel like I had a break of a couple hours from my school work.
-Eric B.

Lake Menomin and the Menomonie Library

A warm day, and a hotter breeze
Green film atop the water
The crunch of nuts we tread over
Ungreen leaves and too-green lake
and with the algae’s odor
the lake is oddly still

Connor B.

Upon entering Menomonie, Lake Menomin is immediately visible. From a distance, this scenic lake appears beautiful and clear, but, upon closer inspection, is found to be covered in a thick layer of algae. This dense film floats on the water like a bright green blanket. As unpleasant as this algae is, it adds beauty to the lake in its own way. Lilly pads lay in the algae, creating a picturesque scene as though an artist painted green around them. However, the smell of decomposing algae and the sheer density of it takes away from the lake’s beauty. Standing at the lake shore, the algae collects by the docks and along the shore, but, looking across the lake, the water reflects the scenery around the lake, creating a beautiful scene amidst the algae blooms.

Crystal B.

First, my group went to the park and looked at Lake Menomin. The lake was very beautiful, but it smelled bad because of the algae on the edges of the lake. The alga was very green and it almost looked like a film that was over the lake. After going to the lake we went to the library, which had a nice overlook of Lake Menomin. The library was also very quiet and peaceful. Overall I really liked going to the library and Lake Menomin with my group.

Karli B.

While walking to the lakeside park, my senses picked up many sounds, sights, and especially smells. The day was very hot and the sun was relentless. The sense I experienced first was the loud chirps and squeaks of bugs in a bush. I found it very odd that bugs would be so noisy in the middle of the day. When we finally reached the lake a putrid smell wafted into my nostrils. It was definitely a warning to prepare us for how green and algae filled the lake really was. Thankfully we didn’t linger near the lake for too long.

Molly B.

As we walked down the hill and entered the park the first feeling you encounter is an overcoming, calm, peaceful atmosphere. We were the only people down in that area and thanks to my lack of smelling capabilities, it was an undisturbed beauty. For our second stop we went to the local library where we were welcomed by the cool air conditioning. Once there we talked to the librarian and learned about the different programs that they offered including a visit by an author who writes scary stories. These two stops helped me get to know Menomonie better and some of the things that I have available to me within walking distance of campus.

Alexa B.

Red Cedar Trail

Red Cedar Trail
The Red River Cedar state Trail was an amazing experience. Although it was hot outside, the town life compared to the scenic smell of trees was different. Everything was a lot more calm and relaxing. The atmosphere was really soothing and the walk itself wasn’t far from campus. As I sat down ants and red backed daddy long legs would crawl all over my feet. The sound of cicadas echoed throughout the entire forest of trees. I tried looking for a four leaf clover but it just didn’t happen. Turns out those are a lot harder to find than I thought

Rachel V.

Red Cedar Trail is an amazing place to go to just get away and relax.  It has awesome scenery and nature.  For example, you can see ducks playing in the river, birds chirping in the trees, and butterflies on all the pretty yellow flowers.  These trails are also nice to for taking walks or going for bike rides.  Also, for people who enjoy fishing, there is a nice river that flows right alongside of these trails.

Mariah W.

Today for our outing we went to the Red Cedar State Trail.  Although I haven’t been on campus a full week, this is my third time here.  As always, it is extremely peaceful and quiet.  I enjoy being able to walk about in nature, even though it was terrifying when I found a caterpillar on my finger.  This park really reminds me of a park back home called Oxbow.  I always had my cross country practices there.  I’m very grateful that places such as this are still being preserved for people to appreciate.  I am particularly looking forward to seeing how this area will look in the fall with all the breathtaking leaves changing color.  A place that is already gorgeous in just green must be outstandingly exquisite in an array of colors.  In addition, this is the first place I can remember seeing blue dragonflies.  They aren’t usually in my way; they just flit about before they continue on their journey.  They are very pretty to look at.  I will continue to take advantage of this beautiful area for running and walks.  I hope that others will be able to find as much joy and serenity in it as I have!

Michelle T.

I love the outdoors and nature, so I enjoyed this trip to Red Cedar Trail. The quantity of spiders, animal homes, and rare wonders, like the cicada skeleton, took me by surprise and made me fall in love with the area even more. New surprises lurk in every hole, on every tree, and in each foot of grass and they are all amazing. I really loved it!

Morgan W.

The Red Cedar Trail is a quiet area a short walk from campus. During our time there, the sun beat down on us reminding us that summer hasn’t quite left yet, and at the same time, dry leaves were being taken from the trees at the slightest breeze. Flowers along the hill leading to the river were dried and wilting from the combination of too much sun and too little water, and the leaves on trees and shrubs were changing from their vibrant green to the colors of fall. On the Red Cedar River, a single boat was fishing from the murky water. The park’s pavilion was being used for a picnic, and other visitors to the area were enjoying one of the last warm days before the inevitable cold weather.

Sam T.

Coming from Colorado, I was not sure what to expect.  Although I left behind the mountains, Red Cedar Trail helped me discover Menomonie has many opportunities to explore nature.  The trail runs along the river and is surrounded by towering pine trees.  In the heat of the day, not many animals were out but we did manage to see butterflies fluttering in the bright sun rays.  I realize that if I need to escape the sound of garbage trucks beeping from my dorm window, I can walk down to the river and listen to the peaceful sounds of nature.  Knowing this, Menomonie is starting to feel like home.

Amy L.

Menomonie may be more known for its aromatic Lake Menomin or its many well-known coffee shops, but it should be known for the Red Cedar Trail.  On a nice day like today, we traveled to this paved, peaceful trail.  It was extremely relaxing and beautiful. There was interesting insect life and many towering trees to keep the ground level cool.  I recommend visiting the Red Cedar trail if you ever need a place to just get away and unwind.

Frances V.

As college students many become stressed about keeping up with homework, projects, and staying active in the different organizations. However, a majority of college students fail to see the simplicities in life and how to distress from such frustrations. One way to do so is to take a stroll along the Red Cedar Trail. Getting in tune with nature is a great way to relax and forget about ones’ worries. Many students plan their life step by step in order to achieve their goal. Even so, taking a step back and looking at the simplicities in nature given to the public for free is helpful to maintain sanity. Whether it’s sitting on the plush grassy grounds or leisurely walking along the river, taking a step back and enjoying the sceneries in life can truly encourage people to stay positive and maintain ones stress levels. With a change in attitude, a simple stroll in the Red Cedar Trail can inspire some to look outside the box by using the simplicities found in the life of nature.

Kimberly Y.

I don’t regularly take long walks, on the beach or otherwise.  I’m from Milwaukee.  There isn’t all that much green there.  Walking along the Red Cedar Trail, though…everything was green.  Including the water.  Algae aside, the greenery along the trail was a nice change from the city.  Peaceful is probably the best way I could describe it, the exact opposite of my normal surroundings.  I approve.

Dylan T.

 My group went to the red cedar state trail. I think that if you are an outdoors type, then this is the place for you. We saw squirrels, a caterpillar and too many spiders to count.  It was interesting to talk about the surrounding places like the Swiss Miss factory. Their hot chocolate is only made here in Menomonie!

Lucas Z.

Wakanda Park, Museum & Indian Mounds

Indian mound in Wakanda Park

For my University Honors Program orientation I went to the Wakanda Water Park, Museum and Elk Walk. The museum has numerous exhibits about the Menomonie area and its past. There were exhibits and displays from the Native Americans to the early days of Menomonie. Next to the museum is an elk and buffalo walk. This is an area to walk around and look at a few elk and buffalo. On the way down to the only three burial mounds left there is a water park to cool off from the heat. We walked down to the mounds and learned why the others had been destroyed. They were destroyed when the dam was raised and the lake flooded the low lands where the mounds were positioned. That was the end of our tour and we then came back to recap our tours.

Brettain J.

The City as Text was an interesting experience. Our group went to the Dunn County Museum, which as we found out, is the largest museum between Minneapolis, MN and Madison, WI. It was neat because it included everything from primal stone weapons up to shiny automobiles of the 50’s. This museum is also supposedly haunted, which made the tour more interesting. We also had the chance to see three Indian mounds. We learned that there used to be at least 20 in the area, but 17 where wiped out when the water rose. There are actually some cute little camping spots that we learned about as well.

Ashley J

On our trip we visited a museum, an animal park, and three Indian burial mounds. The museum was quite interesting. It provided a unique view into the history of the area by separating the facts from some common rumors. The animal park provided a highlight by revealing Charlie the elk close to the fence and posing for pictures. Finally, we took a short walk to the site of three Indian burial mounds. We were informed of the actual history of the remains, and discovered that the plaque signifying the resting place actually bore false evidence. All the places we visited were interesting, but one of the most intriguing aspects of our trip was our guide, Dr. Kennett. He provided detailed knowledge of the UW-Stout campus, and some of its more interesting stories. Few other people know of Stout’s underground tunnel! The trip provided insight and an overall good time.

John K.

For the “City as Text” Honors Program orientation, my group visited the Dunn County Historical Museum. It is the biggest museum located between Madison, WI and St. Paul, MN. There were many interesting things in the museum including Indian darts, old photographs, and other historical artifacts from Menomonie. We then saw three different Indian mounds that are still intact. Many have been destroyed, but today they are recognized as important religious and cultural monuments. We also visited Lake Menomin, which is full of algae, due to high phosphate levels from runoff. The experience as a whole was very informational and it helped our group have a better understanding of Menomonie.

Amanda J.

The “City as Text” trip was incredibly enlightening for me. It was great to be able to see the hidden treasures that Menomonie has here in Dunn County. I was a part of the fourth group, and we ventured to Wakanda Park. The park was wonderful and its beauty was accented by the gorgeous weather. We started our adventure at the museum where there were many historic relics to observe and appreciate. There are artifacts in that museum that date back to 10,000 B.C! It was amazing to see things of that age flawlessly preserved. Wakanda Park also has a wildlife preserve where elk and buffalo are kept. Curiously, we ventured over to see them in action. Eventually we made our way to the Indian Mounds. There are three in Wakanda Park, but there used to be more before they were torn apart. The trip was personally a great experience!

Taylor J.

For my group’s excursion we visited the Wakanda Water Park, Museum and Elk Walk. The museum took a look at Dunn County dating back to the Ice Age all the way through present day. It included arrow heads found in the area and an impressive list of well-known citizens of the area. Outside of the museum is an old one room school house that the local elementary school still utilizes for classes. Behind the museum is a small game park which features elk and bison. Down the road is the park that includes picnic shelters, playground equipment and Frisbee golf. Many families were out at the park enjoying the beautiful weather. The most interesting part of the park is the ancient Indian burial mounds, three oval effigy mounds.

-Kate H.

As part of City as Text, group four and I traveled to Wakanda Park, where we visited the Historical Society Museum, the Menomonie water park, and the nature trail. In the museum we learned of the history of Menomonie, dating back all the way to 10,000 B.C. The artifacts seen and the knowledge gained there created an appreciation for the nature trail, which unfortunately now features only two (possibly 3) of the sacred Native American mounds (and by sacred, I mean you’re free to walk around on them). The water park (necessary only because of the large amounts of phosphate that makes the Red Cedar River unsafe to swim in) and the destruction of the mounds which ruin what could have been a great natural site for Menomonie make me reflect on the root of all the problems: white people. Good going. (Ian and Wang, you guys are still cool).

Jacob H.

I thought the day was pretty interesting. We first went to the Menomonie Historical Society. We learned about the area and its history. We then went to visit the elks and buffalo. That was really cool! Then we made our way over to look at the Indian mounds and the lake. Overall I thought the day was very interesting and I learned a lot.

Xanath Guzman

3M Lake Menomin Park

On Saturday, September 10, 2011, a group of honor students gathered together to learn more about the lands of Menomonie. My group was assigned to travel to a place called 3M Park. So after getting our assignment, we piled on a bus and arrived shortly after at our destination. Once there, we split in half and traveled along two separate paths. My group took the road less traveled, which truly wasn’t a metaphor. There were plants growing on, in, and around the path. However, it was still a beautiful area, and the shade from the trees made it nice and cool. After walking for some time, we found the lake, or rather, we smelled it. So as to get away, we went to a prairie. For a while, we couldn’t find the way out and we turned around many times in the thick prairie grass. Luckily, we found the right path and lived to spread the word about a nice spot to walk, regardless of the lake.

Joshua M

My experience at 3M Park was eye opening.  Before the trip we were assigned an article to read concerning Lake Menomin.  In the article it talked about why the lake was to green and the affect it had on the community.  In the article there was an interview with a woman who became very sick from the lake and was hospitalized.   At first I thought it was an overreaction but once I got to the lake and saw how green it was and the smelled the horrid odor it gave off I realized how bad the lake was.

Elizabeth N

One day six men went to pit their will against the unexplored wilderness around Menomonie.  The men stumbled across a great lake of slime that reeked of decomposition and slowly engulfed all that entered it.  It swallowed rocks and sticks and covered them with a green sludge from which there was no hope of escape.  The great lake was surrounded by a field of maddening proportions. The field surrounded the travelers and prevented them from going on in the direction of their intended course.  The group finally found where they needed to go after over an hour of vigilant search throuh the high grass and gopher holes of the 3M park.

Charlie M

On Saturday, September 10th, I participated in City as Text, the freshmen orientation for UW-Stout’s UHP Group. After dividing up the students, I ended up going with a small group of my peers to 3M Park. When we arrived (after a short bus ride), it was sunny – perhaps a little too hot – and there was a small family playing on the grass; it seemed like quite the place to go to unwind and just relax. Then we took the next hour or so to walk around, find the trails, etc. With the exception of one dead vole located right in the beginning of the walking path, all the wildlife was happy, healthy, and incredibly interesting to look at. The only unpleasant part of this trip was the river (in its entirety). Due to excess phosphorus, the water is green, slimy, and doesn’t smell too great either!

Vikki M

My group for the city as text around Menomonie went to the 3M Park. I felt that this was a wonderful experience to learn not only about the beauty around our university, but also learn about the people we will be spending these 4 years in the Stout Honor Program with. What I enjoyed most about the 3M Park were the colors. I noticed right away all the different colors and hues of the many plants and other wildlife. Another aspect that I enjoyed from the park was the contrast in wildlife, as we were walking we saw a corn field, a lake, and a prairie. It was interesting to me that all three were so close in proximity to one another. I very much enjoyed this adventure and I plan on going to the other places around Menomonie and learning about then as well.

Natalie O

I was a part of group six and as a group we went to 3m park. When we arrived at the park we divided into smaller groups and began to explore.  The smaller group that I was in first encountered a dead vole in the path. Soon after, we saw a jumping toad, several butterflies, and a black and yellow snake.  As we walked towards the water we could smell the effects of the high phosphorus levels and we could feel the bites of the mosquitos. Later along the path, we came across a beautiful prairie and more butterflies. The path we took led us around a loop, which took us back to where we started.  Overall, it was good sunny day to see the scenery and the creatures in the park as well as, to meet new people however; the mosquito bites and heat were a bit unpleasant.

Brittany M

You come around the corner, the sweet smell of grass assaulting your nose as the some sounds of crickets and the occasional songbird fill the air.  The soft glow in the air adds to the feeling of anticipation as the sun struggles to get through the boughs of the mighty pines intertwined with the oaks and maple trees. You look to your right catch of a squirrel disappearing into the safety of the undergrowth. A butterfly, a regal Monarch, flits silently in front of you, dancing in and out of sunbeams till landing lightly on a bright, colorful perch.  You look around yourself and smile, enjoying the peace and relaxation a walk through the 3M park offers.

Carolyn Q

On Saturday, September 10th, a group of students and I received the chance to take a trip to the 3M Park in Menomonie, Wisconsin. To be honest, I was not sure what to expect, but when we got there it was a beautiful park with plenty of trails. Walking through the trails, there was so much to see: insects, plants, wildlife and stunning scenery. Although most of it was gorgeous we also  witnessed the effects of pollutions on Lake Menomin. It did not even look like the lake I thought it was. But although we witnessed the lake pollution we also saw what the parks in Menomonie have to offer. Plus, it is definitely a nice place to get away from the college life and to take a break and be able to enjoy nature. I surely plan on going there again.

Sara O

With my group I went to 3M park.  At the park we traversed the trails that led near the water and through the prairie next to Lake Menomin.   We saw varied wildlife in the prairie, ranging from bugs to small birds and even a snake.  Near the water the smell of the blue-green algae was very obvious, and very putrid.  This raised concerns with me of what might be happening to the lake, the surrounding wildlife, and the surrounding community.  I feel like a solution to what may be causing the blue-green algae growth should be a necessary goal of this community because of how it could affect the people living around the lake.  I personally feel like I would enjoy visiting the lake as often as possible, if it weren’t for the smell and the fact that not much can be done in the lake due to the algae.

Kyle M

When I visited the 3M Park I found a variety of different ways everyone can connect with nature. This park allows you to break free from the city and enter a world full of peace, tranquility, and comfort. I was able to walk along the trail and discover everything from death to life along the trail. Only a couple minutes into my small group’s walk and we found a dead volt in the middle of the trail. Another few minutes passed and we discovered a snake slithering into the tall green-brown grasses alongside the neatly trimmed trail. Towards the end of our walk through the nature trails we found both beautiful majestic butterflies floating through the breeze alongside a handsomely plump brown-black caterpillar inching its way up wildflowers. Throughout the walk I felt calm and had no other worry then discovering the beauties of nature. This is a place where anyone can escape from the city.

Erika M

If I had to describe my experience in one word it would be “smelly”.  I will be honest though. The 3m park was nice except the part by the lake. When we arrived, we saw an open field with a background of forest separated by different paths. There were two main ones. The girls went down the one on the right, and we went down the wrong one. The path we went on got progressively stinker by each step. After we passed the swamp thing’s home, we came across the better part of the place which was the prairie field. It had many flowers and butterflies and it was hot, so we walked back and it took about an hour because we got lost.

Nathan O


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