I’ve spent almost two weeks this year working in and around Bloomington, MN. , home of the famed Mall of America. Each visit I keep trying to get my arms around the community. It’s a pleasant suburban city without a central hub. Intersected by I-494 and I-35W, modern high rise office buildings line the expressways. Everything else seems to be a patchwork of homes, lakes and parks.
Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge is 14,000 acres of protected land. The Long Meadow Lakes section is within a mile of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. When you get off of I-494 you can make a left to the airport or go right to 2400 acres of protected floodplain forest, ponds, marshes, bluffs, spring fed streams and historic sites. Go figure.