A Midwesterner’s View of The Azores Islands

I’ve followed Bismarck, North Dakota-based writer Katey K. since we met at a conference last summer. She’s a riot on Twitter as @Katey911 and she also writes for Katey911.wordpress.com. (Although she’s insisted that I tell you all she’s an “intermittent blogger”.)

I was scrolling through Twitter one morning when I saw that she leaving on vacation. I’m always looking for ways to showcase other Midwestern writers and photographers on Prairie Style File, so I immediately asked if she wanted to write a guest post.

She said sure and it was only then that I thought to …

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Art Matters

“What an artist is trying to do for people is bring them closer to something, because of course art is about sharing. You wouldn’t be an artist unless you wanted to share an experience, a thought.”
– David Hockney

The passing of Prince, Minnesota’s truest, wildest original, earlier this week reminded me of the incredible power that art (and artists) have. Art connects us, it inspires us and it challenges us. Art makes us curious, it draws us in, it keeps us hungry.

Art matters.

Piano by Susanne Williams for the The FM Piano Project

We live in a world …

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My Minot Must-See List

I was on Twitter a few weeks ago when a friend asked about what she should do in Minot. If you’re a regular person, you respond with recommendations (which I did). If you’re also a travel writer, you immediately start drafting a story.

Minot gets a lot of press for being the host city for both the North Dakota State Fair and Norsk Hostfest but I was more interested in what was happening in town during the rest of the year. I didn’t know much about this western North Dakota city before I visited and it had lot …

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What I’ve Learned Halfway Through 30 Days Of Biking

Last month I was in downtown Fargo when I noticed a flyer that promoted 30 Days of Biking, a movement that challenges people all over the world to bike every day for the month of April. It was founded in Minneapolis in 2010 and there are over 8,000 pledged riders from around the world.

Rides around the block totally count (and I’ve done a bunch of those…sometimes at 11:50 p.m.) and of course longer rides do too. The point is to be active, to be outside and to integrate riding a bicycle into your life in …

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Fargo Spring Wing Fling

Hey #PrairiePeople, there’s a new event in Fargo and I think it’s gonna be pretty fabulous. It’s called the Fargo Spring Wing Fling and it happens May 14 at the North Dakota Horse Park in north Fargo.

Eight Fargo-Moorhead restaurants, Shotgun Sally’s, Brickhouse Taverns, Dempsey’s Public House, Herd & Horns, Labby’s, Rookie’s, Sickie’s Garage and Sidestreet, will offer wings for you to try. The rubs and sauces they create will only be available at the event.

You can sample them all and vote for your favorite. There’ll also be a beer garden, food vendors (fingers crossed for …

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Spring Things

It’s spring and, although the weather in the Red River Valley doesn’t appear to have gotten the memo, warm weather adventures are on everybody’s minds.

I hosted a #PrairiePlaces Twitter chat a few days ago and asked readers about their favorite spring things. Here are their recommendations.

Please let me know your suggestions in the comments at the end of the post too! Just look for the questions in bold throughout the post to get ideas about what to comment on or chime in with your own thoughts and opinions. I get my best tips from readers like you.

What do you …

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Hidden Fargo-Moorhead: The View From Above

If this website has taught me anything, it’s that it’s totally possible to become blind to the people and places you see every day.

“I had no idea that was there” is maybe the most common comment I receive, followed by “How long has that been there?” This makes sense when you consider that the Upper Midwest is a pretty big place and it’s totally normal not to have visited every corner of every state. We’re all busy, with places to go and things to do. I get it.

Have you ever walked by this mural? I’m …

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Why I Loved San Juan, Puerto Rico

I have terrible passport envy.

My natural tendency towards wanderlust has been made exponentially worse by reading books set in other countries, befriending other travel writers who go abroad more often than I do and scrolling through a breathtaking (and jealously-inducing) assortment of travel photos on social media this winter.

Plaza of the Religious Procession, Old San Juan, Puerto Rico

So when we had an extremely limited amount of time to arrange this year’s vacation, we landed on Puerto Rico through a rather unorthodox (for us, anyway) decision making process.

And I’m not gonna lie, I was kind of …

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Let’s Talk About Spring

“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”
― Rainer Maria Rilke

“always
it’s
Spring)and everyone’s
in love and flowers pick themselves”
― E.E. Cummings, Collected Poems

The weather is getting warmer, we just marked the first day of spring and everybody in my world is already in full Easter vacation and/or Spring Break mode, so I’d say the transition to the next season is already in full swing. And I’m already dreaming of planting herbs, sitting in the park and relaxing on a patio somewhere. I just need you to tell me where I …

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A Vintage Photo Mystery

If you’ve read Prairie Style File since the beginning, you might remember that I used to write about local art, artists and the creative process for my In Studio series. I want to do more of that in 2016 and as I was researching interesting people, a photo from Kayla at Kayla Satrom Photography popped up on my Instagram feed.

The photo was one that she found on a roll of exposed film at an antique store. Once she had it developed, she couldn’t stop thinking about the people and places she saw in the images. And since midwestern …

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