"The Mississippi Great River Road was listed among
the top three most beautiful drives in the country"

1 -888 -999 -2619
Home Welcome History Birding 100 Mi of Gardens 100-Mile Garage Sale In the News

In the News
Art and Music Festival in Alma on August 31, 2008

6th Annual Music and Art Festival in Alma

Alma, WI  The Mississippi River town of Alma, Wisconsin invites families to the Music and Art Festival on Sunday August 31, 2008.  There will be something for all ages to enjoy Sunday of the Labor Day Weekend at the Beach Harbor Recreation Area.  It is located just north of downtown Alma, exit off Hwy 35 on the Harbor Road.  The event will start at 11 am and go non stop until 7 pm.

This year there will be 2 special guests, Kenny Salwey the Last River Rat will be storytelling at 2 pm and again at 4 pm.  Scott Mehus will be giving a live eagle presentation on loan from the National Eagle Center from 5 to 7 pm.

There will be several Art and Craft vendors.  The Friends of the Library will be sell books under their tent. There will be Live music all day in the big tent with Cam Waters starting at 11 am, followed by Small Potatoes at 1 pm, Ron Sacia & The Fat Daddys at 3 pm and ending with The Riverbenders at 5 pm. All day there will be mouth watering foods such as broasted chicken and dog zellas from the Alma Hotel, Kate and Gracie’s serving gyros, pulled pork sandwiches from Pier 4 Café  and served by the St John youth group and hamburger and hot dog plates by the UCC Church group.  St John Lutheran women will serve home made pies, Fire and Ice Cream shop serving ice cream and root beer floats.

Children will be attracted to pony rides guided by Laura Secrist, other children’s activities include jewelry making, and minnow races along with Scott Mehus who will be helping children make some fun eagle projects. These activities will start at noon until 4 pm.

Stop at the Alma Chamber of Commerce booth for your souvenir Tee shirt and other information or pick up a bag of pop corn from Wings Over Alma.

The tree lined shore along the Mississippi River is a perfect place to enjoy the last days of summer.  “Bring your camera and binoculars as you never know what you may see long the river”, stated Mac Cherry , President of the Alma Area Chamber of Commerce, “we want this to be a safe holiday and enjoyable family experience”.

Admission is $5.00 students are free.  The first 500 paid guests will receive a free 30 minute phone card from TDS Telecom.

The event is sponsored by the Alma Area Chamber of Commerce and TDS Telecom.
For more information: Ph: 608-685-3303 or [email protected]

2008 Lake Pepin Monster Expedition "scienta procul ullus sumptus" (Science at any cost)
August 16, 2008

The Expedition Team
Left to right, George Hoffman, St Paul, MN.  Novice monster hunter and procurer of the bait (pickled herring)

Philip Rahman, Minneapolis, MN. Professional monster hunter and publisher of books about monsters and the "unknown". Has traveled the world in search of monsters, including Loch Ness in Scotland, South Nahani Valley in the Northwest Territory, Mount Shasta, and Black Mount in Glen Coe Scotland.

Anna Waltz, Minneapolis, MN. Author of "Small Little Vampires of Brainard" and creator of the Pepie Expedition theme song. In her right hand is the giant swab used to collect DNA samples from their prey and in her left hand is the bobber for their lure.

Mike Waltz, Minneapolis, MN. Master craftsman who built the lure, based on the team's assumption of what a baby "Pepie" might look like.

Dennis Weiler, (kneeling) Napa, Idaho. The Expedition's boat captain who has accompanied MR. Rahman on several other expeditions.

Scott Wyatt, Bemidji, MN. Crypto-zoologist and experienced monster hunter.

The Expedition Flag and Motto Scienta Procul Ullus Sumptus (Science at any cost)

The Lure

The Lure and its creator Tim Walz

Good Luck!
The Expedition Team is sent off with a hearty "Good Luck" cheer by Lake City entrepreneur and promoter, Larry Nielson.

Monster Expedition Update

On 16, August 2008, an Expedition of professional monster hunters converged
on Lake City to hunt for the legendary Lake Pepin monster commonly referred
to as "Pepie".

Although the group was unsuccessful in their attempts to capture Pepie and
secure the $50,000 reward, they may have made contact with him! A hook was
removed from their lure and an "unknown force" caused the Expeditionary
flag to become dislodged from the boat and thrown into the depths of Lake
Pepin. Even though the Expedition was unsuccessful, they enjoyed
spectacular weather and scenery on their visit to Lake Pepin and no doubt
will mount another expedition to Lake Pepin in the future!

Lake Pepin Monster Expedition August 16, 2008
A monster-hunting expedition will converge on Lake City, Minnesota, on
August 16th to search for the legendary creature that haunts Lake Pepin.
The expedition consists of a dozen intrepid monster-hunter, mostly from the
Twin Cities area, but including members as far away as Bemidji and Nampa,
Idaho. Armed with digital still and video cameras, they will spend the day
exploring the lake, concentrating on areas of previous sitings.  

The leader of the expedition, Philip J. Rahman, is no neophyte to monster
hunting, having twice visited Loch Ness, home of Pepie's more famous
cousin, along with legend-shrouded South Nahani valley in Northwest
Territory; Postbridge in Dartmoor, England, site of the grizzly "hairy
hands" that were known to attack motorists in the Twenties; Mount Shasta;
and Black Mount in Glen Coe, Scotland, home of the "Bloody Thing". Also
included are Dennis Weiler who joined Mr. Rahman on the previous South
Nahani and Mount Shasta expeditions, and Scott Wyatt who previous
investigated a lake monster rumored to dwell near Star Island in northern
Minnesota.  Expedition member Michael Waltz designed the expedition logo and
the monster lure patterned on an Elasmosaurus, a genus of plesiosaur from
the late Cretaceous.  Members of the expedition have theorized that the lake
monster may be cabalistic, eating most of the young to keep the population
low, reducing chances of discovery.

For further information, contact Mr. Rahman at 612-710-8635.
Art and Fire 08
A Lake Pepin Mystery: Do We Have a Situation Here?

Click Here to read the full article

Vikings star Paul Krause visits Lake City
Former Minnesota Vikings all-star visited Lake City on Thursday, June 19th.
He said that he was in town to ride on the Pearl of the Lake paddlewheel
boat and maybe "intercept" Pepie the Lake Pepin monster. Krause was the
Vikings free safety from 1968 to 1979 and was enshrined in the Pro Football
Hall of Fame in 1998 and still holds the NFL record for career interceptions
with 81. He is pictured here with Ken Stechman, Customer Service Specialist with the Pearl of the Lake.
The creature from Lake Pepin

Proof of the legendary local cousin to the Loch's Nessie could net a $50,000 prize for some lucky angler.
By Kevin Harter
[email protected]

Steve Raymond, owner of a gas station and bait shop in Lake City, Minn., believes he's seen a creature in Lake Pepin. He grabbed his camera and took a photo of the monster but says he has misplaced that evidence. (Scott Takushi, Pioneer Press)

As fish stories go, this one is a whopper.

It tells of a large, serpentlike creature, a legendary lunker that lives in the shadowy depths of Lake Pepin below Maiden Rock.

The latest twist in the tale is that anyone who can hook, net or capture Pepie on film could earn a $50,000 reward.

Larry Nielson, 52, of rural Lake City, owns the 125-passenger paddle wheeler Pearl of the Lake. He said he has seen Pepie and believes the creature deserves respect and recognition. That's why he has taken the lead in attempting to prove Pepie lives.

In the process, Nielson, who's also a member of the Lake City Tourism Bureau, wouldn't mind drawing a few tourists to the lake that gave birth to water skiing. That's why Nielson is behind the $50,000 reward and the Web site pepie.net.

"There have been a lot of people over the years who said they saw it, or something they couldn't explain, on the lake, but up until now, there hasn't been a central clearinghouse for that information," Nielson said. The Web site will chronicle the creature.

Read the full story here >>


Kenny Salwey Film Festival Mississippi: Tales of the Last River Rat

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                       

Alma, WI  The Mississippi River town of Alma, Wisconsin invites nature and river enthusiasts to attend the 2nd showing of the film Mississippi: Tales of the Last River Rat.  This is a fund-raising event on Sunday, November 11, 2007. at the Alma High School Auditorium just three miles north of the city of Alma on State Highway 35.  Refreshments, book signing, chatting with Kenny and music by The Riverbenders will start a 3 pm.  The films will be shown at 4:30 pm. Following the film Kenny will be available for book signing also. Admission is $10 per individual and $5.00 for children 10 and under.  Proceeds which exceed expenses will be donated to the Alma Area School for environmental projects, and to Wings Over Alma, Inc.

The premise of the 50-minute documentary, Mississippi: Tales of the Last River Rat, is based on the Voyageur Press (Stillwater, MN) book, The Last River Rat: Kenny Salwey’s Life in the Wild, by J. Scott Bestul and Kenny Salwey. It took the film’s producer, Andrew Graham-Brown from Bristol, England, who is a highly acclaimed, award-winning producer of BBC documentaries 2 years to produce this film.  Neil Rettig of Prairie du Chien, Wisconsin a world-renowned wildlife cinematographer for National Geographic and BBC teamed up with Graham-Brown to do this outstanding filming of the wildlife and scenery of the floodplains, backwater sloughs, bluff top goat prairies and sparkling tributaries of the Upper Mississippi River.

Producer Graham-Brown, describes Kenny Salwey as “a beguiling individual who possesses an exceptional knowledge of the diverse wildlife of American’s great icon, the Mississippi River.”  Salwey casts a unique light on the awe-inspiring natural wonders of this river.  The documentary, seen through Kenny’s eyes and told in his mellow voice, takes the viewer through the four distinct seasons of the Upper Mississippi.  He is the viewer’s guide to the fascinating plants and animals that share the forests, swamps and river.  The story focuses on those animals closest to Salwey’s heart: the muskrat, beaver, bald eagle, snapping turtle, timber rattlesnake, tundra swan, trout and mayfly..to name just a few.

Kenny Salwey, a native of Buffalo County, Wisconsin, is the last of a breed of men who has eked out a living close to nature.  Salwey belongs to a tradition-a fabled fraternity of backwoodsmen whose life has always been intricately bound to the seasonal ebb and flow of this mighty river system.  He has earned his self-sufficient lifestyle as an old-time trapper, hunter, fisherman, root and herb collector, river guide and all-round woodsman.  For years Salwey spent his days and many nights living hermit-style in backwoods swamp shacks, straight out of a by-gone era.

The documentary aired in Europe on the BBC’s Natural World series November of 2005 and received outstanding reviews.  The Discovery Channel aired it in the spring of 2005 and again received several awards.  After the 55 minute Alma Film showing November 11th, the audience will be treated to 25 minutes of the humorous “behind the scenes” look at the extraordinary cinematography techniques used to get the unusual viewpoints of the show’s stunning scenes.

In recent years, Salwey has shifted his focus towards conservation and nature writing.  For nearly 20 years, he has entertained and educated audiences of all ages with his true-life adventure stories of his years in the swamps and hill country along the Mississippi River.  Salwey’s storytelling talents blend folksy humor and woodslore with a gently philosophy of Nature. His ultimate goal is to share his hard-learned experiences, his respect for the Mississippi River and his love of the natural world with his audiences in hopes of inspiring them to protect the precious, fragile and internationally-significant river ecosystem.

Tickets will go on sale September 7, 2007.  Advance tickets may be purchased by sending a self-addressed stamped envelope and a check made out to the Kenny Salwey Film Festival in the appropriate amount to:

Wings Over Alma
P.O. Box 191
Alma, WI 54610

In your ticket request, please list how many tickets at adult and children’s admission price you wish to purchase.  Tickets will also be on sale at Wings Over Alma in Alma, Water Lily Gift Store, Alma, Book Cliffs in Wabasha, MN, Waumandee Bank, Alliance Bank Mondovi and Alliance Bank Cochrane.  At the door if there are tickets still available as seats are limited.

More information at the Wings Over Alma 118 North Main St. or website: www.wingsoveralma.org or 608-685-3303

Press Contacts:  Kenny Salwey
(608) 685-4858
Donna Krebsbach
(608) -685-3303
[email protected]

Tourism’s “Wisconsin-Life’s So Good”
is the new slogan for Wisconsin’s Tourism promotion.
April 4, 2005

Tourism’s “Wisconsin-Life’s So Good” is the new slogan for Wisconsin’s Tourism promotion. This slogan replaces “Stay Just a Little Longer”. Governor Jim Doyle and Department of Tourism officials paired news of a proposed $3.8 million biennial budget increase. Will it happen??? contact your legislator –your help is needed now.

“Tourism is the third-largest economic sector in Wisconsin” Governor Doyle said at a well-attended conference in Madison.

“National Tourism Week” oh, no! it has been changed by TIA to “See America Week” this is an annual event to bring greater public awareness of the powerful economic, social and cultural impacts of travel and tourism through local events and celebrations..It also marks the “official” start of the summer travel season. MVP starts the season with the “World’s Greatest Garage Sale”. Let us know what your community has
planned. Alma is going to “Salute our Veterans for keeping us safe to travel”.

Help Wisconsin to promote our new slogan “Wisconson..Life’s so Good “
go to http://agency.travelwisconsin.com for new logo’s and other info.
Submitted by Donna Krebsbach
Sustaining the richness of the Mississippi
Sustaining the richness of the Mississippi River and the natural experience along the Great River Road Scenic Byway doesn’t just happen. It takes the collective efforts of each of us blending our talents and fostering partnerships with river colleagues from north to south. It takes planning. It takes passion. And it takes place when we get together and open dialog.

The National Mississippi River Parkway Commission Board of Directors and the Minnesota MRPC host committee are excited to announce the details of the 2005 National MRPC Semi Annual Meeting. Please join MRPC delegates, technical advisors and river resources from all 10 Mississippi River states as we open conversations about how – community by community – we can work with a common voice to preserve the historic wonder of the River in today’s ever increasing commercial development climate:
2005 National MRPC Semi-Annual Meeting:

“Sustaining the Richness of the River”

Date: April 21 – 23, 2005
Place: St. Paul Radisson Riverfront Hotel
111 East Kellogg Boulevard
St. Paul, Minnesota
* www.radisson.com/stpaulmn

Please find the agenda and registration form attached. For your convenience, you can also register online at: www.MRPCMembers.com Special day rates are available.

Early registration deadline is March 15th.
Hotel reservations should be made directly with the hotel before March 22nd.

Hope to see many of you in April!

If you have questions, please contact the National Mississippi River Parkway Commission Office at:

Phone: 763-212-2560
E-mail: [email protected]
About Tourism in Minnesota
Tourism is a key sector of Minnesota's economy, generating $9.8 billion annually. It's a statewide industry, part of the economic mix in the Twin Cities area and in cities and towns throughout Minnesota.

Explore Minnesota Tourism (EMT), the state's tourism office, is the lead state agency in promoting this part of the state's economy. The EMT markets Minnesota as a travel destination to sustain and increase tourism revenues in the state; it also leads tourism policy and product development.

In addition to its St. Paul office, EMT serves the tourism industry through its four regional offices. The tourism industry is encouraged to participate in the many marketing opportunities described on this web site.


Upcoming conference link for next week

http://www.deed.state.mn.us/tourism/Conference.htmArticle from the Winona Post


top of page
MVP | PO Box 1 | Wabasha, MN 55981