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Lake Wobegon Tours

March 14, 2008 | 4 Comments

Post to the Host:
My husband and I are spending the summer in Minnesota and so I just have to ask... Is Lake Wobegon a real place and if so where is it? We'd like to visit! Our friends say it doesn't exist but we're not convinced. Please reply with the truth — no matter how painful.

Jane H.
Delton, MI

Lake Wobegon is a fiction, Jane, a big trunk where all sorts of real things are stored, odds and ends of experience and impressions, but if you headed your car north on I-94 and got off at Sauk Center, you'd find a bike trail called the Lake Wobegon Trail that you could wend your way on through Osakis and Melrose and Freeport, Avon, Albany, all of them very real towns, and you could get a taste of Minnesota that you won't get from driving the freeways. It's lovely, wooded country and if you were so moved, you could drop in at Fisher's Supper Club in Avon, overlooking Lake Watab, and partake of the deep-fried walleye. (I own a share of Fisher's, which is run by local people and is really good.) And thanks for visiting us in the summer.


Dear Garrison,
You may have done more for Minnesota
tourism with this letter than all
the advertisements in the world.

I was hoping, someday, to see your
show at Tanglewood. I've changed my
mind -- now it's going to be in
St. Paul, with a visit to all the
places you mentioned.

It all sounds so charming!

San Clemente, CA

hey Garrison, I grew up in a little Michigan town called Walled Lake and was always intending to write a memoir about Lake Wally. Can't now cuz it's too close to Lake Woebegon, both in spirit and in name. However, I'll dream up something else while I pleasure to the tales of your hometown. keep cookin' those stories. love 'em.

John Rainey
Redondo Beach, CA

Jane, Garrison has done much for minnesota, as a young Michigander I grew up listening to PHC every Saturday night, only to miss it when I was working on the Production Staff for our local NPR Station. When I went to college, the stories of Lake Woebegon and my Powdered Milk Bisquit T-shirt pointed me towards Minnesota... hey a land that welcomes us closet Lutefisk and Lefsa Lovers with open arms couldn't be all that bad,right? I found my self at Concordia College in Moorhead, MN.. now those who know MN will say there are many Concordia Colleges - but this one my dear friend is across the street from "The Prarie Home Cemetary" rumored to be the base for the name of the show. Now that made a huge difference... If you look closely on your travels in Minnesota you will find places and business that are Lake Woebegon - just not all in one location. Pleasant journeys... and Thanks for the dreams and memories Garrison!

Fiction? I don't think so. Seems to me there are a thousand Lake Wobegon's across this great land. The stories are beautiful, superb humor, that is found no where else.

Bless you,

Harry Tomlinson
Grand Island, FL

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