Monday, August 29, 2011

Plover, Wisconsin

  We decided to stop at Plover on our way south because that is the home of our niece Rachel and her husband Ben. We had a busy but enjoyable weekend with them. On Saturday we biked a small part of the Green Circle Trail. The trail encircles Stevens Point, a town adjacent to Plover. We started out on the River Pines section, and from there took the Westside Loop which gave us views of the Wisconsin River, and downtown Stevens Point. We also rode past old paper mills and large wetlands.
We took time off from our ride to view a Civil War encampment at Buckolt and Pfiffner Parks. We also strolled around the downtown area of Stevens Point after first checking out the farmer' market. The market had a interestingly diverse group of sellers from the Hmong and Amish communities. I have obtained quite a large amount of produce in the past week, which has kept me busy pickling beets, baking zucchini bread and saucing up rhubarb. I consequently dared not look at any of the produce in the market (well, I did sample some ground cherries which were a bit too strange for my liking).  Anyway, it was the flowers in the market which caught my eye. There were some very beautiful flower arrangements on display.
 We attended a bluegrass festival Saturday evening, appropriately called Bluegrass in the Pines. Sloppy Joes, an excellent bluegrass band which played at our son's wedding, was scheduled to play at 11PM. Unfortunately that was a bit too late for us as we had a bit of a distance to drive to return to Plover.
Sunday morning we attended Good Shepherd Lutheran where Ben is associate pastor. We have been attending quite a few traditional services lately so their praise service was an enjoyable and different worship experience. I found the altar of Good Shepherd to be quite beautiful with a simple stained glass window above it. The window can be popped out and changed for the different liturgical seasons.
Sunday afternoon found us back on the Green Circle Trail. This time we hiked on foot through Schmeeckle Reserve, a nature reserve on the UW-Stevens Point campus. Our last stop of the day was at Steven Point Sculpture Park. One interesting sculture there was La Casa del Carbonero, an artistic piece described by its creator as "inspired by a traditional Chilean charcoal maker's structure..combines a form from my homeland and more contemporary industrial elements ...the viewer is invited to sit inside and ponder". Ben did try it out to see if it could possibly help him with his sermon notes. Today we are moving on to Madison Wisconsin.

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