Saturday, June 22, 2024

Our Koffee Trail: Aspen Coffee

Aspen Coffee building

Date of Visit: June 19, 2024

Location: Aspen Coffee, Edmond, OK

We had skipped getting any coffee earlier this day because after having to start our day with an unplanned oil change we did not want to waste any more time getting on the road and hitting Pops. After we were back on the road from Pops, we decided to find whatever was the closest coffee shop without going off the route to Tucson. We actually thought we'd probably end up at Starbucks, but Apsen Coffee ended up being the closest and no more of a detour than a usual food or gas stop off an exit. 

holding my vanilla cinnamon iced latte

I had a Vanilla Cinnamon Iced Latte.

See full list of Our Koffee Trail stops here and Our Koffee Trail Google Maps list here.

Our Koffee Trail: Hidden Springs Java

Hidden Springs Java building 

Date of Visit: June 16, 2024

Location: Hidden Springs Java, Medora, ND

Hidden Springs Java is "hidden" inside the Mercantile building in Medora. We stopped in to get some coffee to drink while we walked around Medora while waiting for the Theodore Roosevelt Visitor Center to be open to get our park stamp before a quick round of mini golf at Little Bully Pulpit Mini Golf.

Holding my cup

I had a Cafe Miel.

See full list of Our Koffee Trail stops here and Our Koffee Trail Google Maps list here.

Our Koffee Trail: Serendipity Coffee Drive-thru

Serendipty Coffee Drive-thru front of building

Date of Visit: June 15, 2024

Location: Serendipity Coffee Drive-thru, Dickinson, ND

While visiting Medora, ND, we stayed in Dickinson, ND as it was much cheaper than the lodging in Medora. On the way to the Theodore Roosevelt National Park and Medora the first day, we stopped at Serendipity Coffee Drive-thru.

My lavender honey latte

I enjoyed a Lavender Honey Latte.

Danke sticker on my latte

We thought it was interesting that they used stickers instead of plastic stick stoppers.

Floral sticker on Dad's cup

See full list of Our Koffee Trail stops here and Our Koffee Trail Google Maps list here.

Thursday, June 20, 2024

Mini Golf Adventures: Little Bully Pulpit Mini Golf

Little Bully Pulpit Mini Golf road sign

Date of Visit: June 18, 2024

Location: Little Bully Pulpit Mini Golf, Medora, ND

We did not have much time to spend really exploring Medora (and Theodore Roosevelt National Park), but when I found out there was mini golf making sure we played the course was a top priority to fit in.

Me by Theodore Roosevelet National Park sign on Hole 18

The theming of Little Bully Pulpit is Medora and North Dakota symbols for the front 9 and the Badlands for the back 9. The variety of holes was fun, especially as each hole had an information sign about what the hole was representing.

Dad putting behind Theodore Roosevelt National Park sign on Hole 18

As there was a larger group just starting when we were paying for our round, they suggested we cross the street and start with the back 9. When done with the Back 9, we ended up being an even larger group for the front 9 and skipped hole 2 to get ahead of them and then went back to do Hole 2 before doing Hole 9 last. Certainly not how I prefer to play, but we were trying to save time as we still had the Enchanted Highway to do that day and the layout of this course made it not difficult to do out of order.

Hole 1 Medora Musical Info Sign
Hole 1: Medora Musical

Hole 1 Medora Musical themed

Hole 2 Mining Info Sign
Hole 2: Mining

Hole 2 Mining Themed

Hole 3 The Tipi info sign
Hole 3: The Tipi

Hole 3 The Tipi themed

Hole 4 Wind Energy info sign
Hole 4: Wind Energy

Hole 4 Windmill themed

Hole 5 Petroleum Oil info sign
Hole 5: Dakota Petroleum

Hole 5 Petroleum Oil themed

Hole 6 Freight Wagon info sign
Hole 6: Freight Wagon

Hole 6 Freight Wagon themed

Hole 7 Maltese Cabin info sign
Hole 7: Maltese Cross Cabin

Hole 7 Maltese Cabin themed

Hole 8 Meat Packing Plant info sign
Hole 8: Meat Packing Plant

Hole 8 Meat Packing Plant themed

Hole 10 Rolling Plains info sign
Hole 10: Rolling Plains

Hole 10 Rolling Plains themed

Hole 11 Petrified Forest info sign
Hole 11: Petrified Forest

Hole 12 American Bison info sign
Hole 12: American Bison

Hole 12 American Bison themed

Hole 13 Bully Pulpit Golf Course info sign
Hole 13: Bully Pulpit Golf Course

Hole 13 Bully Pulpit Golf Course themed

Hole 14 Wind Canyon info sign
Hole 14: Wind Canyon

Hole 14 Wind Canyon themed

Hole 15 Horseshoes info sign
Hole 15: Horseshoes

Hole 15 Horseshoes themed

Hole 16 Cowboy Hat & Boots info sign
Hole 16: Cowboy Hat & Boots

Hole 16 Cowboy Hat & Boots themed

Hole 17 Rough Riders info sign
Hole 17: Rough Riders

Hole 17 Rough Riders themed

Hole 18 Theodore Roosevelt National Park info sign
Hole 18: Theodore Roosevelt National Park

Hole 18 Theodore Roosevelt National Park themed

LEGO Ranger Dan with Theodore Roosevelt National Park themed hole
Ranger Dan

Final Scores

  • Kjersti - 54
  • Dad - 52
Score card for Front 9, Kj 31, Dad 25

Score card for Back 9, Kj 23, Dad 27, Final Kj 54, Dad 52

See full list of our Mini Golf Adventures here.

Enchanted Highway: How We Spent Dad's First Retired Father’s Day

Dad and I spent the first week of Dad’s retirement traveling to the 2024 North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in Medora. Father’s Day marked the beginning of his second week of retirement. It started off with a visit to Theodore Roosevelt National Park South Unit and a round of mini-golf at Little Bully Pulpit in Medora before beginning our journey back to Chicago on I-94 to pick up Mik and start his 30th birthday trip.

Enchanted Highway sign

There was so much more of North Dakota we wanted to explore, but we settled on checking out the Enchanted Highway as it was right along the route. The Enchanted Highway is a series of large metal sculptures leading to the town of Regent. Not part of the Enchanted Highway, but as we continued on I-94 we also stopped at the largest Holstein cow, sandhill crane, and buffalo.

Geese in Flight sculpture

The first sculpture, Geese in Flight, is actually visible from I-94 as it is right at Exit 72. This sculpture holds the Guinness World Record for Largest Scrap Metal Sculpture.

Geese Sculptures in Flight lining road

Along the road as you approach the parking area for the sculpture, there are Geese sculptures.

Deer Crossing sclupture

Next was Deer Crossing.

Maze of Enchantment metal sculpture fence maze

At this stop we noticed The Maze of Enchantment. We later found many of the sculptures had an associated activity for children (of all ages).

Grasshopper sculpture with wheat sculpture in background

Then there were Grasshoppers.

Giant grasshopper sculpture

Dad riding metal grasshopper

And a ride on a grasshopper.

Western Meadowlark on sign

As we were pulling out of the parking lot for the Grasshoppers we also happened to catch a glimpse of the North Dakota state bird, a Western Meadowlark.

Fish metal sculptures

Our next stop was Dad’s favorite, Fisherman’s Dream.

Me on Metal Boat Sculpture

At this stop there was a boat run aground that you could climb aboard.

Pheasants on the Prairie sculptures

Our next encounter was Pheasants on the Prairie. As we drove to the next stop, we even saw an actual Ring Necked Pheasant crossing the road.

Teddy Roosevelt Rides Again sculpture

Then there was my favorite, Teddy Roosevelt Rides Again.

Dad riding in stagecoach

Here there was a stagecoach you could climb up into.

Giant Tin Family sculptures

Just before arriving in Regent was Tin Family.

Enchanted Highway gift shop and Wirly Gigs sculpture

The journey ends in Regent at a Gift Shop and Wirly Gigs.

Sir Albert Slaying Dragon sculpture

The clerk in the gift shop told us to check out the next sculpture at the end of the road, Sir Albert slaying a Dragon. For more details about the Enchanted Highway, visit the Enchanted Highway website.

Me with Salem Sue

After getting back on I-94, our next stop was in New Salem, ND to see Salem Sue, which is the World's Largest Holstein Cow.

World's Largest Sandhill Crane sculpture

Next stop was the World's Largest Sandhill Crane in Steele, ND.

World's Largest Buffalo sign 1959, Dakota Thunder

Last stop sightseeing in North Dakota was the World's Largest Buffalo in Jamestown, which was built the same year Dad was born.

Me with World's Largest Buffalo