Thursday, September 20, 2012

The Good Girls are good sports in Fargo

Judy takes great glee in pushing Steve Buscemi through the wood chipper. Photo by Debi Lander.
The movie Fargo is one of those films you either love or hate. Judy and I both enjoy the black comedy.  Naturally, when we heard the famous wood chipper was in Fargo, we insisted on a visit. 

We reached Fargo on Labor Day when nothing was open but malls, restaurants and, fortunately, the Visitors' Center where the machine is ideally located. They even supply the plaid hats for photos.  In fact, they want to take your picture for their Facebook site.

While wandering the  tourism displays, I picked up a pamphlet on the Roger Maris Museum. I remember him (yes, I'm that old) and my ex was truly devoted to the man. The museum is also conveniently located in a mall, so off we good girls went in the name of sports enthusiasts. 

Fargo native Roger Maris has his museum here. Photo by Debi Lander.
The Maris Museum displays fill the indoor storefront windows with easily readable signage. They don't take long to peruse but you really must go inside and sit in authentic Yankees ballpark seats to see a continuous playing film on Roger's life. The film lasts about 45 minutes and we thought, was well worth the time.  You can come in just about any place and catch on.

Memorabilia galore. Phptp by Debi Lander.
Roger Maris was a humble man who didn't care much for publicity, but he happened to be a great ball player. In 1961 he and team mate Mickey Mantle battled through a home run hitting streak. Mickey got hurt but Roger went on to break Babe Ruth's long standing record of 60 home runs in a season. Note: Ruth played a shorter season but Maris still hit a record 61 over the fence. 

Home run crown. Photo by Judy Wells.
Many people criticized him for breaking the Babe's record but  in many ways I suspect Roger's accomplishments were more difficult. And, he did it in an era before steroids. 

Roger's home run pennants extend far beyond the length of the museum. Photo by Judy Wells.
Sadly, Maris died very young and is buried in his hometown of Fargo. We did not go to the cemetery but I'm sure many do as there's not a lot to see in this town. We honestly wanted to visit the Art Museum, but it didn't open until 11:00 a.m., too late for our schedule.  

Our other discovery in Fargo actually started in Bismarck.  A restaurant called the Space Aliens Bar and Grill caught our eye. It looked a bit strange but the kind of strange that makes North Dakota interesting. When we saw another one in Fargo, we ventured in. 

Space Aliens Bar and Grill: We had to go in. Photo by Debi Lander.
The restaurant, dubbed "the extraterrestrial mother-ship of food and family fun, " was fun. The decor included a domed outer space ceiling, lots of kitschy creatures and references to earthlings. Kids love it because they can play games and win prizes- like at the Dave and Buster's in Jacksonville. The bar is a separate room giving adults a kid-free zone. We watched the bartender whose job seemed rather unusual; he not only made drinks but plated desserts.  In between pouring beers he put together ice cream sundaes, space cakes and who know what else. We joked about the strawberry syrup sitting near the salsa. Perhaps someday he will create an out of this world alien treat.   

 All in all we were glad we visited Fargo but honestly don't think we'll be returning any time soon. 

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