October 1, 2023

Ringing in October on the St. Croix River


Ringing in October on the St. Croix River

Todd Swank's Diary Entry for October 1, 2023

On Friday night, we joined Avery and Abby for dinner at Kona Grill.  Abby's Grandma Brenda was in town and we had the honor of meeting her.  She's a very nice lady.  It was fun getting to know someone from Abby's family which we haven't had a chance to do yet since they're mostly all living in Georgia.

Luke has been living at home for only a month, but just moved into a new place with his old roommate, Jackson, and new roommate, Cade.  I'm going to miss having a buddy at home, but we're excited to see where this new adventure takes Luke.

On Saturday, we drove to the Minnesota/Wisconsin border to the St. Croix River.

We've been having an annual tradition with our good friends Karl & Tina Zitzwitz to take their boat down the river to Red Wing, Minnesota, and Treasure Island Casino for a night of debauchery.  

We couldn't have asked for better weather considering it was the last day of September.  The temperatures were in the high eighties both days which is unseasonably warm for this time of year.  We certainly weren't complaining.

It's about a 3 and a half hour ride each way.  It's always an adventure with beautiful sights constantly coming into view.  Watching the trains go by right next to the river with the colorful foliage behind them is a very memorable image for me.

I also enjoy going under this railroad bridge in Prescott, Minnesota.  It's so interesting to see the point where the St. Croix River converges with the Mississippi River because the two rivers have strikingly different colors so you can see the exact spot in the water where they merge.

You never know who you're going to bump into on the river.  

As we pulled into the marina, we began noticing various pelicans in the water.  We occasionally see pelicans in Minnesota, but I wouldn't consider them commonly seen.  Thus my surprise when we encountered an island of them where there were literally hundreds of them gathered together.  I assume they were meeting to plan their migration strategies before heading south for the winter.

We had a bunch of them fly directly over us.  Some were even kind enough to drop off some presents on the boat as they soared past.

Karl said this was the latest in the season we've ever done this trip.  That may have explained why the marina seemed so empty when we got there.  That's OK, though.  We can have plenty of fun together all by ourselves!

We started the evening with a pleasant dinner at Tado's Steakhouse.  I liked pronouncing the restaurant like it was my first name, TODDO!  I'm sure the other guests enjoyed it as well especially after I said it five or six times.

We enjoyed doing a little gambling together, but never seem to walk out of the place with more money than we came in with.

We'd hoped to take in a concert while we were there, but there wasn't anybody playing that night.  However, we did sit and watch this band for awhile and really enjoyed it.  They sang a lot of classic songs from the seventies and eighties and rocked them like a hurricane.  Sadly, I didn't catch the name of the band but I'd watch them again if I randomly encountered them on another night in the future.
@toddswank Train crossing the St Croix River in Prescott, Minnesota. #train #bridge #stcroixriver #prescott ♬ Bridge Over Troubled Water - Simon & Garfunkel
@toddswank A barge on the St Croix River south of Welch Minnesota. #barge #stcroixriver #minnesota #riverlife2021 ♬ Fortunate Son - Creedence Clearwater Revival
@toddswank I hear a train a comin’! #train #stcroixriver #wisconsin ♬ Folsom Prison Blues - Johnny Cash

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