Thursday's Child: Destination Saint Paul

Thursday, August 8, 2013



Destination:  Saint Paul, Minnesota

When we visited: July 2013

Why to go: Saint Paul does a great job of paying homage to its famous citizens.

What to see:


We covered a lot of ground in half a day in Saint Paul.  The first famous citizen we tracked was 
F. Scott Fitzgerald, who grew up there.  Rice Park is home to a statue built in his honour, depicting the artist as a young man.  Garrison Keillor has said, “This sculpture was conceived as a figure in the midst of things, a figure you could walk up to and talk to.” 





Having seen the sculpture, we wanted to retrace some of Fitzgerald's steps.  Both his birthplace (two photos up) and the house in which he wrote his first novel, This Side of Paradise, (photo immediately above) are beautifully maintained and marked with commemorative plaques.  Fitzgerald spent much of his childhood in the city and, after spending time in Montgomery, Alabama and New York City, he moved back to rewrite his book.  He had met Zelda Sayre in Alabama and was smitten; he devoted himself to the novel hoping he could convince her that he could support her in marriage.  He did, and they married in New York in 1920.  (I've always thought there was a bit of Zelda in Daisy Buchanan.  What do you think?)


My sports-fan husband couldn’t pass up the chance to see the statue of Herb Brooks in downtown Saint Paul.  Brooks will always be remembered as the man who guided the U.S. hockey team to a gold medal in 1980, as the coach of the Miracle on Ice hockey team.



Notwithstanding my love of The Great Gatsby, I have to concede that Saint Paul’s most beloved son is probably Charles Schultz.  Peanuts was the first comic strip I remember reading, and A Charlie Brown Christmas was an annual part of my childhood.  What other comic strip has inspired TV specials, stage shows, jazz recordings, Thanksgiving parade balloons, and a skating revue?  A series of sculptures in Rice Park pay tribute to some of Peanuts most beloved characters, including Sally and Linus, above, and Charlie Brown and Snoopy, below.  Elsewhere in the park we saw Schroeder playing the piano, Marcie reading on a park bench, and Peppermint Patty kicking a football.




21 comments:

Belinda said...

Peanuts rock. So does MN,

Natalie Aguirre said...

Wow! I loved the picture of that second house. It looks so cool from the outside.

Jemi Fraser said...

Love those Peanuts sculptures! Worth the visit for those alone :)

Bonnie said...

What? No Lucy giving advice? I love them all. Yes, I think Zelda Fitzgerald was F. Scott's model for Daisy.

St. Paul's looks like my kind of place. Hugs!

I Wilkerson said...

You certainly made the most of this trip! I guess I should have ditched the how-not-to-be-a-nervous-parent (which I'm not) sessions at the U of M and done the tourist thing instead.

Valerie said...

Yes! I always thought the same about Zelda and Daisy! The way Zelda was portrayed in the movie Midnight in Paris immediatly made me think of Daisy Buchanan.

What a beautiful city, Saint Paul! Love the shout out to Garrison Keillor too. :D

Juliana Levine said...

Cool pictures Beth...I never been to this part of US.
Fun sculptures :D

Daniela Grimburg said...

Great pictures, you really managed to capture the atmosphere of the place.
Cool sculptures, loved especially the one of the Peanuts :)

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Those Snoopy statues are adorable!!!

Kathy said...

Great pictures, Beth! I have never been to the Minnesota or to that part of the US for that matter. Looks like a wonderful trip…love the Peanuts statues! Charles Schultz was one of my favorites. I also love the photo of you throwing your hat in the air like Mary Tyler Moore…very cool!

belesaaru said...

Hi, Just stumbled upon your blog and love all the pictures and wonderful writing.

Kari said...

Those statues are so cute :-) Sounds like a great place to wander around!

nancy at good food matters said...

Looks like this was a great trip. I've never visited Minneapolis nor St. Paul, and would love to some day. Your photographs are great! I had no idea of either Fitzgerald or Schultz connection to the city--

Angie Schneider said...

I like the Charlie Brown and Snoopy statues...so adorable!

Monet said...

Ah! What a great trip! I love Fitzgerald so I think that would be enough reason for me to go! Thank you for sharing Beth!

Jess said...

Very cool! One of my favorite authors, Anne Ursu, lives in the other twin city. I've never been to St. Paul, but it looks like it's a friendly place to wander around!

Andrea_TheKitchenLioness said...

Beth, I had almost forgotten that the Peanuts were my very favorits comics when I was a child and the Peanut movie was the first movie that I ever saw in a movie theatre - thanks for bringing back those lovely memories! Great photography, Beth - nice to see you had such a lovely time in Saint Paul!
Have a wonderful Sunday, Beth!

Kitchen Riffs said...

I forgot that Fitzgerald was from Minneapolis. Great statue. Sounds like such a fun trip.

bakewithjill.com said...

You saw a lot of statues on this trip! The Charlie Brown and Snoopy one is really sweet.

Lady Rae Silver said...

2016 we are still benefitting from your great pictures! I was googling Zelda, a new fascination. The St. Paul 'Peanuts' were such a great bonus. I love them! They are especially great with you in the picture...gives an idea of size. I just showed (as a substitute teacher) the 'Great Pumpkin' last month and the classes all loved it (after all these years), timeless. The caricatures are visual 'eye candy'....I'm still fascinated, too. I'd love to visit these, since I can't, thank you.
Lady Rae, Ft. Worth

Beth said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed this post. Thanks for letting me know!

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