Hailing from the state of Washington, I was blessed on a daily basis with panoramic views of Puget Sound as well as the rugged Cascade Mountains. Although many of these United States lack breathtaking scenery (Illinois…), there is definitely a unique attraction to each place.
For my most recent post, I wanted to share a positive experience I’ve had in each state that I have traveled for the great Fraternity:
Idaho: Play a round at Coeur d’Alene Golf Resort with its famous floating green. Having a postage stamp sized landing area will surely test your game.
Montana: Fly fish the Bitterroot River in Hamilton, MT. It’s one of the best managed trout rivers in the world, and only a short drive to Yellowstone National Park.
North Dakota: Stop in and see 11 full-sized Dinosaur skeletons in Dickinson, ND. The Dakota’s are some of the most fossil rich places in the world.
Minnesota: Eat at Mesa Pizza. This unique pizzeria serves an eclectic style of pizza by the slice featuring favorites like Mac ‘n Cheese, Gyro and Burrito Pizza.
Wisconsin: Tour the Lakefront Brewery in Milwaukee. During Lent, the Friday night Fish Fry is one of the most happening places in the city. You’ll also want to pick up at least a serving of a Wisconsin Staple, deep-friend cheese!
Illinois: Be in Wrigleyville for a Cubs game. Win Lose or Draw, Cubs fans know how to enjoy our nation’s pastime.
Indiana: Witness the Little 500. Each year students at Indiana University participate in the most hotly contested bike race this side of the Tour de France. It’s so competitive; it even spawned the Cult Classic “Breaking Away”, featuring a dashing young Dennis Quaid.
Ohio: In the Cincinnati area, you’d be bereft of culture if you didn’t stop by Jungle Jim’s International Market. You can literally buy everything under the sun, and be sure to browse the over 1,400 varieties of Hot Sauce!
Kentucky: Visit the Woodford Reserve Estate on the Kentucky Bourbon Trail. Take a tour of the grounds led by a true Kentucky gentleman and learn the art of making Bourbon, an American institution.
Iowa: Vacation at Lake Okoboji in the summer. Okoboji is a haven of outdoor and aquatic recreation deep in the heart of Iowa.
West Virginia: Visit the Lost World Cave, home of the Infamous “Bat Boy.” This tabloid sensation has been burned into the collective memory of a generation, and is still culturally relevant today.
Pennsylvania: Meet the Amish. Residing in pockets of Pennsylvania and Ohio, the Amish live a quaint existence without modern conveniences such as electricity or automobiles. It’s not uncommon to see horse-drawn carriages tied up to next to convenience stores and restaurants.
New Jersey: The Garden state holds one of the most intriguing culinary delights in the Northeast. Stop by the appropriately named “Grease Trucks” and have yourself a Fat Darrel, Maxim Magazine’s #1 sandwich in America.
New York: Like its west coast counterpart California, the majority of attention is lumped on the big city. However, Cooperstown, NY is a destination for any sports fan. If you make it there, be sure to get your picture with the Lou Gehrig Memorial Award, presented by your Phi Delta Theta Fraternity each his in his honor.
Tennessee: Across the street from the Vanderbilt campus, visit a full-sized replica of the historic Parthenon, Greece’s most famous monument.
North Carolina: Much to the dismay of folks from Texas, Memphis and Kansas City, vinegar based BBQ is King in the Carolina’s. Tangy pork BBQ is the name of the game, and there’s no better place in Asheville than Little Pigs.
South Carolina: Any seafood lover needs to get to South Carolina and sample their Low Country Shrimp ‘n Grits. You can try this recipe as well, provided by the Clemson tigers.
Virginia: It’s hard to pick a top destination in a state steeped in tradition, but George Washington’s Estate at Mount Vernon provides a unique glimpse into our Nation’s past.
Maryland: Crab cakes and Football, that’s what Maryland does! You might also want to try some Baltimore famous Pit Beef while in town.
Missouri: I try not to be too “touristy” on the road, but it’s hard not to summit the Peace Arch while in St. Louis. It’s interesting to be moving both vertically and horizontally in an elevator as you ascend the parabolic monument.
Nebraska: Nothing is more “Nebraskan” than Memorial Stadium on game-day with the Huskers. To top off the experience, be sure to flag down the Runza boys for a traditional Polish snack!
Colorado: The “Big Rad” is one of my favorite places, mostly because of the people and the striking beauty. It may also have to do with the eclectic atmosphere of Pearl Street, nestled against the Flatirons.
Utah: The Beehive state is unbelievably rugged, and it’s not uncommon to drive 100 miles without seeing a single building. The rock formations created under the primordial oceans are definitely something to see out west.
Nevada: Aside of Las Vegas and Reno, Nevada is composed of small towns with unique people and endless stretches of undeveloped land. My city is Mesquite, home of the annual RE/MAX World Long Drive Championships.
Arizona: Ever want to test your endurance? Travel to Phoenix and tackle the trail on Camelback Mountain. Although it’s only 1.4 miles long, something about 100+ degree heat and the threat of snakes makes this hike a doozy!
California: There are so many places of interest in the Golden State, but my favorite place to eat is the Dog House Grill in Fresno, and it’s impossible to beat the scenery of Yosemite.
Oregon: One of the most interesting cultural experiences I’ve witnessed on the road happened in the Hippy Mecca of Eugene, OR. At the Saturday farmers Market downtown, you can get a great meal, some awesome organic produce, and some original artwork even better than this T-Shirt.
Washington: Visit Ross Lake National Park. To reach the floating resort on Ross Lake, you need to take a Passenger Ferry, a flat-bed truck ride on a switchback mountain road and finally a 50mph pontoon speedboat. Once you are there, you’ll know exactly why reservations are made years in advance…
Wyoming: Wyoming may have a population less than a number of US cities (544,000) but it presents an opportunity to see every major North American game species from the comfort of your car in Yellowstone National Park.
South Dakota: How could I drive across South Dakota and not see the “World Famous” Wall Drug Store. Most folks from South Dakota would rather have you stop at Wall Drug than see the Black Hills or even Mt. Rushmore. I guess the pie is pretty tasty…
So far, I’ve seen 31 states while traveling for Phi Delta Theta, and I look forward to seeing many more before my time on staff is finished.