Thursday, July 12, 2012

The Answer is FIREWORKS

If you read the last blog you will remember the question, “Why did we come to Sioux Falls?”, and the answer is “Fireworks”.  We had stayed at the Lyon Fairgrounds in Sioux Falls 4 years ago and remembered the down-home celebration we experienced then and so we returned this year.  Also, we are on our way to the FMCA Golden Spike Rally in Lewistown, MT, and Sioux Falls is on the way. 

I just have to say… I LOVE fireworks.  Maybe one of the reasons is our daughter, Jennifer, is a pyrotechnic and shoots fireworks for baseball games, football games and other celebrations.  Our niece, Denise, has been a pyrotechnic at Disneyland for more than 20 years.  We also go to the big fireworks celebration, Winterblast, in Lake Havasu, AZ.  And we have helped ‘crew’ a number of shows for Jenny.  So we can't miss a big 4th of July show with fireworks.   These are some of the pictures taken this 4th of July.  It was a wonderful patriotic celebration with a performance by the Sioux Falls Municipal Band, a circus, and the fireworks.
These fireworks were pretty but they were not synced with the music playing in the background.  We are so spoiled seeing Jenny’s shows.  If you would like to see her 4th of July show following the Fresno Grizzley Game, click this link.

One of the cool things we have discovered in Sioux Falls is the Memorial for the Battleship, South Dakota.  It is displayed as a life size outline of the ship with radar, guns, and a very nice museum in the middle.
This is where we looked for over 30 minutes for a geocache before giving up a “did not find”.  Sad smile  In our defense as geocachers, it was a Difficulty-3.5 micro and only 2 groups have found it since it was placed.
We did find a cache earlier in the day. Open-mouthed smile   We did not do much caching as it was blasted hot and we tried to stay in air conditioned venues as much as possible.

We drove down to the area that the city is named for, The Falls.  They are spectacular.

This is all that remains of the Queen Bee Mill, built to process grain grown in South Dakota. It was built in 1879 and produced as much as 1,200 barrels of flour a day.  It was the most ambitious attempt ever made to use waterpower west of the Mississippi River. It burned in 1956.

This was the hydro-electric power plant that also used water power to produce electricity, but now is a café.  The wall below the windows is where a laser light history show is shown every night at 9:30 throughout the summer.

We took the Free Trolley Ride around the Historic District of Sioux Falls and learned where we should visit the over the next few days like the Clock Tower Museum.


One day we went to the Sertoma Butterfly House.  We were just getting out of the car in the parking lot when a lady came up to “Da Toad” with her camera.  She was taking a picture of the Travel Bug on the back of “DA Toad”.  Of course we got to talking and exchanged Path Tags with Tobi (BakerGeckos), a fellow geocacher.  What a special lady that we hope to meet again some day down the road.

The Butterfly house also displays one of the best salt water aquariums we’ve seen.

Trying to photograph butterflies in flight is really challenging so most of my pictures were of butterflies that had landed on something. There are several white butterflies in the picture below.

One landed on Tom and a little girl coaxed one onto her finger.

These butterflies are drying their wings before flying away.

The flowers in the butterfly enclosure were so pretty.

The next day we went to the Museum under the Clock Tower.  We found the largest manufacturer of hot air balloons and the giant balloons used at the Macy’s Parade in New York, Raven/Aeostar, is in Sioux Falls. They manufacture the envelopes, the burners, and the baskets.

There was a good display on bicycles, but the weirdest thing there was a picture of a bunch of boys in the 50’s and one looked JUST LIKE Tom when he was a teenager. (What do you think, Ellen?)

This is the full picture of the boys and some of the bicycles on display.

Our last night we went to the laser light show.

We discovered many new things in Sioux Falls this year.  I am always amazed how much there is to see and learn about this beautiful America.  Even when we revisit an area, we never run out of things to do. This is why we travel full time.  I know we will never live long enough to see it all, but we are sure going to give it our best shot.
So until next blog, we will be on the road again, caching places that we’ve never been.

1 comment:

  1. I've never visited Sioux Falls other than to drive through or around it. So thanks for a great virtual visit!


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