Mall of America

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It’s fairly easy for the imagination to take over about people who fly around on business trips... varied climates, exciting restaurant choices, visiting touristy “hot spots,” and some sense of immersion into local culture.   I don’t fly much, but my experience is that it’s airport to airport, to office, to hotel, to dinner, to office, to airport to airport.   The dinner is the best part.  Otherwise, it may as well be Anywhere, USA.

I happened to make my second business trip to the Minneapolis/St. Paul area, one that I expect to be my last.  Well, if I fly up early and take a half day vacation, what could I see and do?  Hello Tripadvisor.com. 

No insult to the hundreds of thousands who live in that area, but... nothing jumped off the page.  Little parks, some fairly artsy explorations, a cool used CD store... but nothing that said “Get Thou a Rental Car and Make Haste for Destination x.”

So, I took the transit train to the Mall of America, technically in Bloomington, MN.  With minimal effort (namely another 15,000 sq.ft.), MOA would surpass King of Prussia Mall as the nation’s largest.  Aim higher, Minnesotans. 

What follows is simply the visual evidence of “Been There, Done That.”  Hover over pictures for additional comments.

 

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In the era of Sandusky, it’s a bit awkward to be a male taking photos of kids at play.  Below is a parachute that a group was having fun playing with in an atrium area.

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Let’s see, Macy’s, Nordstrom, Sears, Best Buy, Old Navy, Barnes & Noble... same ol’ stores in Anywhere, USA.   Distinctive stores included several featuring Minnesota sports teams apparel, a “old time saloon” photography store, and not much else.  As expected.  But, if I were in need of sneakers, baseball hats, or chocolate, I could certainly find what I wanted here.  In this economy, I was surprised that there were not more vacancies.

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Like car dealerships, the Apple and Windows store are located across from each other.  It wasn’t surprising that the Apple store had numerous customers.  It was surprising that Windows managed to scrape together a few of their own.

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Three levels of Macy’s is appealing to some, I’m certain.  I liked the balloon.

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The scale of this mall is fairly amazing, with many angles formed by the walkways, escalators and support members. 

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The Lego store tends to dominate the area.

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The mall is rectangular shaped, with a Nickelodeon theme park in the middle, and a theme park in the mall is something we don’t have around these parts.

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Great destination with kids, great destination for exercise for the mall-walkers, great destination to spend money, and I’d guess it’s a mall that’s a great place to hang out for teenagers on weekend nights.  Otherwise, it’s just an insanely large mall.

Oh, and I bought a yo-yo for my 18 year old son.

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