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Archive for north dakota

A Legendary Surrender

By Linda Tancs

Native American tribal leader Sitting Bull symbolized the conflict between Indians and western settlers, a dispute that increased markedly after gold was discovered in the Black Hills of South Dakota, a sacred area to Native Americans. Ultimately his battles with authorities led to his surrender at Fort Buford in North Dakota in 1881. Now a state historic site, the fort is probably best remembered for that seminal event. Located near present-day Williston, it was a vital frontier plains military post established to protect overland and river routes used by immigrants settling the West. Original features still existing on the site include a stone powder magazine, the post cemetery site and a large officers’ quarters building which now houses a museum.

A Chateau in North Dakota

By Linda Tancs

French nobleman and entrepreneur Marquis de Morès was a key player on the western edge of North Dakota. There he founded the town of Medora (named for his wife) in 1883 and pursued his legacy as a meat packing industry baron. In keeping with his station in life, he built a 26-room home just southwest of town. Now a museum, the Chateau de Morès State Historic Site contains many of the original furnishings and personal effects of the family. It’s open from May to September.

A Model Home in Bismarck

By Linda Tancs

The former governors’ mansion in Bismarck, North Dakota, was the largest of its day in the city when it was built in 1884, hailed as a model building. In 1893 it was appropriated for use as the executive mansion. Twenty governors ultimately called the Victorian mansion their home until 1960. Thereafter it served as a mental health clinic (the first one in the nation to use talk therapy as a treatment for mental illness) until purchased by the State Historical Society in 1975. The house opened as a museum in 1984, its exterior being restored to its appearance in 1893. The interior of the house was not restored to reflect a particular time period. Instead, it was designed to present the overall life of the house, with exposed layers of historic wallpaper and paint samples showing the many changes that have taken place over the years.

Five Countries in One

By Linda Tancs

Beginning with tonight’s opening ceremony, five countries are converging on the State Fairgrounds in Minot, North Dakota for Norsk Hostfest.  Continuing through 4 October, Hostfest celebrates Scandinavian culture from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden and is North America’s largest Scandinavian festival.  This year’s entertainment includes Doc Severinsen, Merle Haggard, Peter Noone (Herman’s Hermits), Bill Engvall and Jennifer Nettles.  With a lineup like that, expert pure Scandimonium.

Where the Buffalo Roam

By Linda Tancs

President Theodore Roosevelt was an avid outdoorsman and a budding naturalist in his youth. During his presidency he advanced his conservationist agenda with the preservation of millions of acres of land and the creation of wildlife refuges. His values are well defended at Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Located in western North Dakota, the park monitors and manages elk, bison and feral horses to maintain sustainable populations. An entrance fee is required. Buy an annual park pass, available for 20 dollars. A lifetime pass for U.S. citizens or permanent residents aged 62 or over is available for 10 dollars.

Always Warm in Fargo

By Linda Tancs

In April, the lowest temperature in Fargo, North Dakota can dip into the 20s or even lower.  But the Fargo Moorhead Convention and Visitor’s Bureau will tell you that it’s always warm–friendly, that is.  The Children’s Museum at Yunker Farm exudes warmth.  The century old, red brick farm house was the first brick house built in the Dakota territory.  In this home-like atmosphere learning and exploration is fun for families.  And what could be warmer than that!  Don’t miss the Easter Eggstravaganza this weekend.

Looking Up in Fargo

By Linda Tancs

Education, preservation and restoration are the goals at the Fargo Air Museum in North Dakota.  Their flyable aircraft exhibits include the F4-U Corsair, L 39 Jet, TBM Avenger, P 51 Mustang, Bell Helicopter and Duggy DC 3.  Plans are underway to build a second wing to house restoration projects complete with rivet stations, audio WWII vignettes, welding and aviation basics.   To raise funds for the new wing, the museum is raffling a 1964 Cessna Skylane.  Tickets are available for $50 each, and no more than 2,500 tickets will be sold.  The winner will be drawn on 30 June 2012.  Things will definitely be looking up for one lucky flyer.  Buy your ticket today.

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