West Baden Springs Hotel: Touring Historical Opulence

West Baden Springs Hotel: Touring Historical Opulence

Lee W. Sinclair dubbed his dream hotel “the eighth wonder of the world” when he built it in 1901. The opulent West Baden Springs Hotel’s centerpiece was the dome-topped 200-foot diameter atrium. The rest of the hotel and the surrounding grounds were grandiose, as well. The West Baden Springs Hotel, along with neighboring French Lick Springs Hotel, was the wealthy’s place to go. West Baden Springs was more than a hotel; it was a full resort. The resort included a casino, a velodrome, and a baseball field that professional teams used for spring training. However, West Baden Springs was best known for its mineral springs that had healing powers. We toured the West Baden Hotel during our recent French Lick, Indiana, visit and learned of the hotel’s rise, decline and restoration. Read more

2 Romantic Bed and Breakfasts along Indiana’s Ohio River

2 Romantic Bed and Breakfasts along Indiana’s Ohio River

We used to stay only at chain hotels when we traveled. Until, during a press trip in our early blogging days, our hosts booked us at a bed and breakfast. Our first B&B experience was so impressive that we now prefer to stay at bed and breakfasts, small inns, cottages and cabins. So we were thrilled when our itineraries for last fall’s road trip to southern Indiana included several such accommodations. Among the places we stayed were two romantic bed and breakfasts along the Ohio River:  Kintner House Inn in Corydon and Market Street Inn in Jeffersonville. Read more

North Dakota Road Trip Day 5: Bismarck to Dickinson

North Dakota Road Trip Day 5: Bismarck to Dickinson

On the fifth day of our summer road trip across North Dakota, we took a road trip inside a road trip inside a road trip. Starting at Bismarck, we drove to Mandan. We left the interstate at Mandan and continued west on the Old Red Old Ten Scenic Byway. At Gladstone we detoured south onto the Enchanted Highway, then headed back north to continue on the Old Red Old Ten to its end at Dickinson. Read more

French Lick Springs Hotel: A Stay in Historical Luxury

French Lick Springs Hotel: A Stay in Historical Luxury

When the Monon Railroad built a line from Chicago to French Lick, Indiana, in the late 1800s, everyone who was anyone from Chicago began visiting French Lick. Well-to-do folks played golf on a championship course. They bathed in the healing mineral springs. And they stayed in the luxury French Lick Springs Hotel or the nearby equally luxurious West Baden Hotel. Read more

Goldmoor Inn Artists in Residence Teaching January Painting Workshops

Goldmoor Inn Artists in Residence Teaching January Painting Workshops

I had never touched watercolors in my life—besides the eight-color Crayola® trays that I used in kindergarten. Yet, in only two hours, I created a watercolor painting that I was proud of, during the inaugural session of the Goldmoor Inn Artists in Residence program. The luxury bed-and-breakfast Goldmoor Inn, located in Galena, Illinois, is sponsoring the program for four consecutive weeks during January. Award-winning Chicago watercolor painter Carol Luc taught me and several others basic watercolor techniques during this past weekend’s session. Read more

Midwest Wanderer 2016 Top 10 Posts

Midwest Wanderer 2016 Top 10 Posts

At Midwest Wanderer we write about a variety of article topics. We like to include a mix of restaurants, attractions, festivals, and accommodations. So I was pleasantly surprised when I ran the list of the Midwest Wanderer 2016 Top 10 (most viewed) posts and the top four were a bakery, an attraction, a hotel, and a festival. Apparently you, our readers, like a variety of topics, too. Here is the list of Midwest Wanderer 2016 Top 10 posts: Read more

Why You Should Stay at the Murphy Guest House

Why You Should Stay at the Murphy Guest House

When I visited northern Indiana’s Amish country, I stayed at the Murphy Guest House Bed and Breakfast in Bristol. Here is why you should stay there, too. Read more

One Day in Fargo, North Dakota

One Day in Fargo, North Dakota

I can’t tell you how many times we’ve had a short time in a city and wished we could stay longer. Fargo, North Dakota, is one of those cities. We had a week to explore North Dakota, and a single day in Fargo was our starting point. Read more

Red Umbrella Bed and Breakfast: Relaxing Retreat Near Hershey

Red Umbrella Bed and Breakfast: Relaxing Retreat Near Hershey

I felt at home as soon as we pulled up to the red-brick Federal-style Red Umbrella Bed and Breakfast.  White rockers and red begonias on the porch that stretched across the home’s front practically yelled “welcome.” Co-owner Anna Goss’ genuine friendliness cemented my comfort level. The Red Umbrella B&B in Grantville, Pennsylvania, would be our home for the next three days while we explored nearby Hershey. Read more

Roadtrip: Meet Minnesota’s Great River Road

Roadtrip: Meet Minnesota’s Great River Road

The Mississippi River, the third-largest watershed in the world, flows over 2,300 miles through the United States, from Lake Itasca in Minnesota south into the Gulf of Mexico. Traveling the Great River Road Scenic Byway, which follows the course of the river, is on my bucket list. However, lacking the time to do it “right,” seeing everything there is to see along the byway in one trip, I am doing it piecemeal. During a recent travel bloggers conference, TBEX, which was held in Minnesota at the Mall of America, we had an opportunity to explore part of Minnesota’s portion of the Great River Road, from Kellogg to Red Wing. Read more