Thursday, August 31, 2006

Mystery Fireworks

We could hear muffled rumblings, then brilliant crackeling sounds. Boom! Boom! The distinctive sound of 9:30 in the evening on a warm Monday night. The dogs were nervous.
I put on a pair of shoes and wandered down toward the lake in the dark (streetlights are scarce in Deephaven). Gathered at the public landing were a few of my neighbors.
To the west the sky was illuminated by dazzeling fireworks. Big Island, in the foreground, was outlined by the bursts.
It lasted half an hour, and was a very impressive display. I do not know who was reponsible for such a lively display on a Monday night. My simple "as the crow flies" estimation tells me it came from Orono.
The next day I made a couple phone calls, then decided I preferred the mystery.


Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Toonie the Shetland Sheepdog

Toonie i August.

Toonie On Tonka

Our American Kennel Club "formal" name for our Shelty is "Toonie On Tonka". Having met many other dog owners in the neighborhood I have found that some variation of "on Minnetonka" is very common. Kind of like Leonardo "Da Vinci" or Judy "Chicago".... well that's a stretch.
"Toonie" is a traditional name for Shetland Sheepdogs, in fact they were originally referred to as "Toonie Dogs" by the Sheltland Island farmers. "Tun" is farm in Norwegian- I read that, and I am open to corrections or modifications.

From The Shetland Island Web Page:
"In the early 8th and 9th centuries the Vikings arrived in the Shetland Islands looking for land, and for the next 600 years or so the Norsemen ruled both Orkney and Shetland.  Surprisingly, although the Vikings had a reputation as fearsome warriors, they settled down and became farmers.
In 1468, the impoverished Christian Ist, King of Denmark, Norway and Sweden, pawned the Orkney Isles to James III of Scotland in lieu of a royal dowry, for 50,000 florins and then the Shetlands for a further 8,000 florins."

In Canada they have a $2 coin called a "Toonie" or sometimes a "Two-nie". That's 2 dollars Canadian.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Along the Road

Along the Road
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Solar System's loss

Our Solar System
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Now Pluto is one of the dwarves.

The International Astronomical Union has re-defined the term "planet". As of August 22, Pluto became a "Dwarf Planet".
So what is hard science? Just a group of definitions, categories and subcategories? I think not. Since 1930 Pluto was a planet... a proud one I might add. Now it has been rellogated to rubbing elbows with Sneezy and Dopey.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

A James J. Hill Race Competitor?

A Hot Dog on the 4th!
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
I took this photo in Deephaven on the4th of July, but I expect this fellow to be to be one of the competitors at the starting line.

James J Hill Days Features Dachshund Races!

From the Explore Minnesota web site:
James J Hill Days Wayzata:
An old-fashioned celebration on the shores of Lake Minnetonka. Arts and crafts fair, food fair, business expo, parade, dachshund races, Kids Carnival and special shows. 100 classic and antique cars. Engine #261 steam locomotive train rides.
Dates: September 8, 2006 to September 10, 2006

Dachshund races would make "The Empire Builder" proud.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

"Batson's Corner" Wayzata 1925

Superior & Wayzata Boulevard. In 1930 "Batson's Corner" was the busiest intersection in Minnesota, with 8,340 vehicles passing through. The vast majority were heading to Excelsior.

Monday, August 21, 2006

At the Ox Yoke Barn

At the Ox Yoke Barn
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
Inside the barn, looking out.

Golden Rod Abounds

The Luce Line - Hay Fever Revisited
I drove out to St. Bonifacious on Sunday and parked my car in a dirt lot near the Ox Yoke Inn. This “Inn” is a classic western Minnesota bar and grill. It is a favorite stopping spot for bicyclers, bikers and sightseers. They serve a burger called the “Jucy Lucy”, deriving it’s name from the adjacent Luce Line trail. (The Inn getting it's name from the nearby Ox Yoke Lake - which is shaped like an Ox Yoke) The burger is very similar to the famed Lions Pub burger. Both to me are merely conventional burgers.
Grilled, preformed beef patties - probably Simeks brand, sauteed nondescript white bun, lettuce, tomato, optional onion and cheese of your choice. Enough said, customers seem to like them a lot.
I had decided to run the runner-friendly trail, while my wife was at the Ox Yoke Stables riding her horse “Rainey”.
As I ran the on clay surface trail I became aware that the trail is lined with goldenrod. A pretty weed that really is more of a physical nuisance than anything else. I ran along and sniffled.I was also aware of the a new golf course that had sprung up along the trail. A private club with a nifty membership fee.
The cyclists who filled me in on the club told me the clubs name, but I blanked it out after I heard the fee. I came back home and watched the Twins win... free. GO TWINS!
I apologize if this is a dull post.... it is Monday.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Details at Thorpe

Details at Thorpe
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
Thorpe Park, Deephaven. One of the many benches scattered throughtout the dog-friendly park. This one is an antique with the "Miracle Mfg" lettering molded into the cast iron frame.
Sit down and contemplate the miracle.

Friday, August 18, 2006

A Deephaven whale.

Deephaven whale
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
Resting on a skid at Deephaven Beach. This old boat has seen a lot of time in lake rocky bottoms and up against the docks.

Greetings from Felix

Greetings from Felix
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Big Island In The News: From the MCWD website:

Minnehaha Creek Watershed District Managers Attend Big Island Park Ceremony

MCWD Board managers Pam Blixt, Jim Calkins, Jeff Casale, Lee Keeley and Ethel Smith joined the Governor in a short ceremony transferring ownership of Veterans Park on Big Island to the City of Orono.  The MCWD assisted the city in the acquisition by purchasing a perpetual conservation easement over this 56-acre park with more than 7,500 feet of frontage along Lake Minnetonka.  The Governor announced that the park, now renamed Big Island Park, will be “dedicated to those who desire to reclaim, enjoy, and protect the history, the sanctity, and the peacefulness of this precious land, its natural inhabitants, and its natural resources.”

Editors note: It has been called Big Island for over 100 years.

A do-able Triathlon- Deephaven.

I have watched athletes stagger and crawl across the finish line in triathlons. Some have even eliminated on themselves. Others are simply crippled for life. Well hurray for Deephaven and their family traithlon. All the finishers I witnessed were tired but happy. They had finished a do-able triathlon. In this Deephaven Days city sponsored event participants swim 400 yards, bike 10 kilometers and then run a 2 mile run.
For most triathletes this would seem to be a light workout. For real humans, this is a perfect fun and fit event. My aside: If you think a marathon is tough, try running a competitive, all out mile.
( BTW - They could lengthen the biking section to 10 miles).
I apologize for the lack of photos.


Minnetonkascenes is a no “ something on a stick joke” zone. You want jokes about deep fried foods or things on a stick go to your State Fair live radio program.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

The Deephaven Historical Society

Jim Wyer - "Mr. Deephaven"
I was introduced to Mr. Wyer, Deephavens oldest resident, at Deephaven Days. Another member of the Deephaven Historical Society, Marylou Bennis, encouraged me to attend the Society meetings. She called me 'young man'... Bless her heart.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Wild fowers on a bench

wild fowers on a bench
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
There is the hint of Autumn.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Meet Bobbles the Clown

Meet Bobbles the Clown
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

I met Bobbles the Clown at the Long Lake Corn Days Festival while walking my dog Rocky. "Bobbles" leaned toward me and asked me if I knew why dogs were bad dancers. I replied "No". Bobbles said; "Because they have 2 left feet!"
Another button stated: I do not talk to strangers... please introduce yourself.


Meet Bobbles the Clown

Meet Bobbles the Clown
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Deephaven whale

Deephaven whale
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Celebrate corn

Celebrate corn
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
Here comes the Corn King!

Monday, August 07, 2006

The Long Lake Centennial Corn Days

I wonder how many Long Lakes there are in Minnesota? This Long Lake is in Hennepin County and can be found where I 394 magically is transformed into Highway 12. Highway Construction is ongoing.
I attended this festival last year, and enjoyed listening to the music and the small town flavor of the festival.

From the Long Lake Centennial Site:
CORN DAYS - Saturday, August 12 through Sunday, August 13
The Church of St. George will be hosting their annual Corn Days festival.  Centennial button holders (you must be wearing your button) will enjoy free "all you can eat corn" at the festival and will be able to participate in various special drawings.

The Long Lake Area Chamber of Commerce will also be participating in Corn Days activities by sponsoring the Corn Days Parade on Sunday, August 13.

Boating with Tang

We recieved a call Sunday from Peggy Tang, inviting us out on her boat to cruise Lake Minnetonka. Who could refuse? It was sunny , 81 degrees, and we could tour 'The Lake' the best way... on someone else's boat!
The Lake was semi- busy with very courteous boaters. Many Minnesota environs were at the new State Fair - The Uptown Art Fair (fine art while eating a pronto pup).
Peggy had not yet named her little 17 1/2 foot Crestliner. I suggested "The Little Gnat". Gnat is Tang backwards. Rejected.
She is leaning toward "PT Cruiser".


Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
There was a light wind.

Wayzata 1

Wayzata 1
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
We tried to keep our distance.

Saturday, August 05, 2006


The Lesser Scientists
Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Sir Francis discovers bacon.

Friday, August 04, 2006

I Cried

I cried because I had no shoes,
'till I met a man who had no feet. - So I said, 'You got any shoes you're not using'?"
  --  Steven Wright

Tour de' Tonka - No Performance Drug Testing!

It was announced that the Tour De Tonka is not a race. There will be no drug testing, so I put away the 5 bottles of Robitussin cough Syrup I use as a masking agent and decided to ride au natural!

From the official event page;

Tour de' Tonka, Saturday, August 5, 2006. This event is for all ages. This will not be a race. There will be a 15 mile ride, 25 mile ride, and a 65 mile ride which loops around Lake Minnetonka.
Riders can check in or register between
6:15-7:15 am on the day of the ride. There
will be a mandatory safety meeting for a riders at 7:20 am. All riders must attend this session.

Thursday, August 03, 2006


Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.
Waiting for the wind.


Originally uploaded by minnetonkafelix.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Steam Boats at Burwell Park

The Burwell House was built in 1883 for a milling family. There was a wooden plank dock out front for callers arriving on small steamboats to use to visit the Burwells, - and for the delivery of mail. Boats and timber floats used the Millpond to bring their cargos to Minnetonka Mills from Lake Minnetonka.
The following lovely historic Burwell house, blacksmith and other outbuildings are located in a little park owned by the City of Minnetonka just off Minnetonka Boulevard.
After the dam was built at Gray's bay the Millpond was filled in 1897.

Burwell House, Minnetonka Mills

In the 1880s, Steamboats from Lake Minnetonka stopped here via the Millpond, Minnetonka Mills.