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One Can Dream

June 12, 2012
by Lori Hall , Emmetsburg News

I now know what I would do if we were to win the lottery. It's not as if I didn't have ideas before. Of course, I would pay off all debts. That's a no-brainer. And I've always wanted to travel more. So, some lengthy jaunts around the globe would be added to the tab, as well.

But now I know what I would want my dream home to look like, at least on the inside. I know because of a recent trip to IKEA. The name alone conjures up some Scandinavian deity. I-KEY-AH. Over the Memorial Day weekend, Rich and I celebrated our fourth wedding anniversary by traveling up to the Twin Cities to spend a night and a day. We did a lot of fun things, but the best was visiting the IKEA store near the Mall of America. The store is a three-level behemoth that can be a bit daunting. We examined the first level filled with model kitchens, living rooms, and bedrooms, and bypassed the cafeteria where they were serving Swedish meatballs (what else would you expect?). Advancing to the next level, there were model bathrooms, children's rooms, and office areas, not to mention all the little things that make a house a home. I found a really handy spatula and Rich found a coffee carafe that he just couldn't live without. The thing about the IKEA line is that form follows function. Items may sport a traditional, funky, or contemporary style, but all boast clean, efficient lines. The simplicity was refreshing.

But the trip wasn't all about dream homes. We also got to check out some pretty awesome restaurants. The Lion's Tap in Eden Prairie is one of those favorites. It has a long history. At times, over the years, the property has been home to the Upper Grass Lake Gun Club and a spot for a local fruit and vegetable stand. In time, the owners began serving beer at this little roadside stand, and it soon became a neighborhood bar. The vegetable stand was discontinued and bootlegged whiskey and slot machines were added, which attracted more customers.

The hamburgers that the Lion's Tap is famous for were added in 1958. According to the history of the restaurant, "The hamburgers were made in an electric frying pan, which could handle four burgers at a time. They sold for $.25 each, regardless of whether they were a California, Cheeseburger or plain Hamburger. Business was going so well that they bought a new grill, which could produce eight hamburgers at one time. Sears introduced tap beer, which became very popular. Beer was a whole $.05 a glass. Hamm's and Grain Belt were the top-sellers. Beer was flowing so substantially that they had to build a walk-in cooler and expand their seating. This little roadhouse built into the bluffs of the beautiful Minnesota River Valley occasionally had bands and dancing as an added attraction."

So, we now know that if Rich and I ever win the lottery, we will go all-out in IKEA-style as well as building and operating our own "Mom and Pop" style burger joint close to home. One can dream, can't they?

 
 
 

 

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