Sunday, September 19, 2010

Back To Mineral Point

So, now that I have my pictures from Mineral Point downloaded off the Droid, I can finally do my blog entries. We went up there to visit our friends Daniel and Alan. Here's me and Jim at the Mineral Point hotel where we stayed (much bigger if you click on it). It's a 4-room B&B and, as you can see, Mineral Point is very Midwestern small town in appearance.  Even so, there's a lot of history as well as artists and small stores. I really got to like the picturesque 'main street' complete with its ice cream shop and breakfast joint (the Red Rooster).

Daniel has been coming up for decades, and so he seemed to know just about everyone we bumped into. This was helpful as we got to go down into some of the artists studios. Seeing these stone-walled, unfinished basements full of paintings, ceramics, wood carvings, or whatever in various stages of completion, along with reference materials and supplies made me really miss my artistic pursuits. The workspaces were just sizzling with creative energy!  One of the ceramics artists showed us how he works the clay for the mugs he is partially known for producing. It was just like Hapkido class, where you stand around and watch someone do something and just learn by seeing. It was great that they took the time to speak with us.  Definitely made the trip interesting.

The town is not a manicured 'small town' the way some of these weekend towns are. Not that there's anything wrong with that. It can be very nice and pleasing to the eye, but I also like the vibe from a town that isn't too self-conscious.  This was especially true as we went hiking around. We'd pass some of the old Cornish limestone buildings which are empty and no one has done much with, and it would be in the middle of a field like the one above. The shot at the left (click for larger view) was typical of the country right around the town. By the way, the rolling hills of southern Wisconsin really is great country.  Could definitely image what it would look like in the fall!

The town has a bike trail running through it that I think either is or is connected to the Military Trail up there that Jim and I had biked a bunch of years ago.  There's also a place where they have an art fair and you can try out different crafts: blacksmithing, ceramics, etc. Definitely sounds like PeteRetreat potential!

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