While working towards this goal, many times we try to plan activities that involve the image that comes to mind as we think about the state. For example, our token Texas trip included a visit to the Alamo.
Our Louisiana trip included Cajun food, Zydeco, and, of course, a swamp tour.
But we also enjoy uncovering the hidden treasures of a place through more spontaneous trip-planning. Since Stephen loves reading through every pamphlet we come across when we travel, it’s not so tough anymore to find random things to do wherever we are.
But on the way back from Houston, Gary and I started talking about what we considered to be the token thing to do in each state. Like….
Go to a potato farm in Idaho.
Go to a corn farm in Iowa. (Surely there’s something else, right?)
Go to Mississippi and ride a riverboat.
But those are mainly stereotypical ideals. When people find out my childhood roots are in Oklahoma, I’ve experienced the sterotype: “So, do the Indians there live in teepees?” or “You poor thing. There’s nothing in Oklahoma. It’s No Man’s Land.” And yet, if they just stick to those ideals of Oklahoma, they’d miss out on things like The Holy City of the Wichitas, or Medicine Park, or the Arbuckle Mountains, or Robber’s Cave (a former hideout of Belle Starr and Jesse James).
And I don’t want to miss the unusual, wonderful, off-the-beaten path adventures when we head to the 50 states. So, my question to you is, where should we go if we head to your state? What is special around your current hometown? (If you’re overseas, I’d love to hear about that, too, because we don’t intend to keep ourselves limited to our home country.) Let us know what’s special about where you live! We may even come and visit you!
Our intention is that we will eventually take all of these ideas and put them into one place so that all of us can experience Off-the-Beaten Path America, as recommended by the “experts.”
As we build up this part of our website, be sure to look for the link-ups to each of the states we have visited and link up your own blog posts – or submit a comment sharing some of the places we might have missed! To take a look at some of the places we’ve been, visit our Traveling America posts:
Many Half-a-Hundred Acre Wood readers have contributed SO MUCH to our trips in the way of recommendations. As the family planner of our trips, I am so grateful to all who have offered suggestions! So… consider this a heart-felt THANK YOU!