The great state of Minnesota is beautiful during all seasons, but come Autumn, when the air is crisp and the trees begin to turn fiery colors of orange, yellow, and red, the Land of Lakes really shines. For another year of our second installment of our ‘Fall Foliage’ event series, we’ll explore the pristine St. Croix River Valley. Join us for a full day of fall fun as we take in the majesty of this region by bus, train, boat, and foot.
Our day will begin in Roseville, MN at our check-in location, where your GetKnit Gurus will be waiting to greet you with a hot cup of joe and donuts. From there, a luxury coach bus will whisk us north, as we travel up river to the Minnesota Transportation Museum’s historic 1916 Soo Line depot located in Osceola, WI. There we will board the Great Northern train for a 90 minute journey that follows the St. Croix River valley on top of the river bluffs, winds down to river level, crosses over historic bridges, and travels through lush state parks. Along our journey we’ll enjoy a Champagne brunch, that features poached eggs benedict with house-made hollandaise, and is served with herbed American fries and a fresh fruit medley (vegetarian option available upon request).
We will then head to the iconic Franconia Sculpture Park which was recently named one of the “Top 10 parks in and around the Twin Cities“. Here we will be greeted by one of the park’s resident artists who will give us a guided tour of the many giant sculptures set throughout the 43 acre park. Or you’ll be able to explore the grounds at your own speed. As you enjoy this unique park you can enjoy an included cup of hot apple cider and an apple turnover, perfect for the crisp fall air.
Next, we will continue our journey north to the beautiful Interstate State Park nestled on the coast of the pristine St. Croix River Valley. Here we will be greeted by a naturalist, who will give a brief but informative overview of the many treasures that lie within this too often overlooked state park. Afterwards we will have the opportunity to take a naturalist guided hike through the Glacial Potholes and the overall beauty found here on an optional hike, and with some free time to explore the beautiful river forests on our own.
Our adventures will continue as board Taylors Falls Scenic Boat Tour‘s paddleboat. “She” will take us on an 80 minute happy hour cruise of the river giving us a unique vantage point of the beautiful river valley and the fall colors erupting from its shores. Aboard the paddleboat, we’ll be able to order up our choice of local wine from WineHaven Winery, beer, cocktails, or pop.
To round out this epic fall day, we’ll head to the Wisconsin side of the river and visit the beautiful Dancing Dragonfly Winery surrounded by acres of grape vines and the colorful forest in the distance. Here we will order either a glass of one of their house-made wines, a bottle of beer, or a non-alcholic beverage and enjoy a delicious wood-fire pizza dinner alongside of fresh salad. After we’ve eaten our fill, we’ll have the opportunity to enjoy a tour of the grounds or take in the serenity of the vineyard.
We think you’ll agree that this day-trip will leave you with beautiful photos, wonderful memories, and a renewed appreciation for all that our diverse state (and Western WI!) has to offer.