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The two RV Gypsies looked for Oddities
in Bemidji, Minnesota
(but first, a short paragraph about Bemidji KOA)
July 1, 2013
map of Minnesota showing location of Bemidji

The two RV Gypsies parked their motorhome at Bemidji KOA in Bemidji, Minnesota. As with most KOA's there were dirt roads in the campground. The pool was very small, but as usual, the two RV Gypsies did not use it. Washing vehicles not allowed. The two RV Gypsies had full hook-ups with 50 amp. Wi-Fi was fast. The park had bike rentals, a game room, mini golf and a very small heated pool. They did have cable TV. Cabins also on site. Shaded sites were nice. Lee took a few nice sunrise photos from within the park. Bemidji KOA had a campground cafe that delivered food to sites, so the two RV Gypsies ordered a pizza and wings. The wings were over-cooked and really tiny. The pizza was not cooked; the crust was totally raw and mushy.

sunrise through the trees at Bemidji KOA
sunrise at Bemidji KOA

Bemidji (/bəˈmɪ/ bə-MIJ-ee) is a city in Beltrami County, Minnesota, United States. Bemidji is the principal city in North Central Minnesota and the largest commercial center between Grand Forks, North Dakota and Duluth, Minnesota. Bemidji houses many Native American services, including the Indian Health Service. The city is the central hub of the Red Lake Indian Reservation, White Earth Indian Reservation and the Leech Lake Indian Reservation. Bemidji lies on the southwest shore of Lake Bemidji, the northernmost lake feeding the Mississippi River and, as such, is deemed "the first city on the Mississippi." Bemidji is also dubbed the "curling capital," of the U.S.

Its name derives from the Ojibwe Bay-may-ji-ga-maug meaning "lake that traverses another body of water". On occasion, in Ojibwe, the city of Bemidji is called Wabigamaang ("at the lake channel/narrows"), because part of the city is situated on the Lakes Bemidji/Irving narrows, located on the south end of Lake Bemidji, and extends to the eastern shore of Lake Irving. Some people also credit the name to Chief Bemidji, an Ojibwe chief.

 

Paul Bunyan and Babe statues Bemidji Minnesota -

Bemidji is the hometown of busting out 1940s actress Jane Russell, but to most vacationers it's better known for its postcard-perfect Paul Bunyan and Babe statues. Bemidji has possibly the oldest shrine to the legendary lumberjack in this Bunyan-thick land.

Overly broad-shouldered and boxy, the 18-foot tall, 2.5-ton Paul was built in January 1937 by sun-starved Bemidjians. Companion Babe the Blue Ox, once on wheels, was trucked around to Minnesota carnivals for a few years before joining Paul permanently in 1939. The spot where they congregate on the shore of Lake Bemidji is said -- by the Chamber of Commerce, anyway -- to be Paul Bunyan's birthplace.

sign - Bemidji
Karen Duquette measuring Paul Bunyans butt
Paul Bunyan, Babe, and Karen Duquette
Babe the blue ox

The adjacent Chamber of Commerce building features a collection of Bunyan stuff -- Paul's titanic boxer shorts, flyswatter, toothbrush, dice, playing cards, belt, chocolate bar, lighter -- pretty much any slightly over-scale piece of anything.

welcome to Bemidji sign
sign about Paul Bunyans shot gun
large stuff for Paul Bunyan
large stuff for Paul Bunyan
large telephone  for Paul Bunyan
Paul Bunyans hat

Lake Bemidji and scenery behind the Chamber of Commerce

Karen Duquettew, Lake Bemidiji and scenery behind the Chamber of Commerce

laughing due clipartWonder if Paul Bunyan ever used these spikes as toothpicks??????

Karen Duquette and Paul Bunyans toothpicks
a pond behind the Chamber of Commerce
a pond behind the Chamber of Commerce
Lake Bemidji
pathway and flowers

Bemidji, Minnesota: Green Mr. Hockey Statue - on 4th Street, NW, Bemidji - On the lawn in front of Security Bank USA.

Nine feet tall and uniformly dark green, a 1970s-vintage hockey player created by Wanda Reise Odegard looks ready to deposit a puck from the grass outside of a bank. He is painted green so he won't endorse any hockey team.

Green Mr. Hockey Statue
Green Mr. Hockey Statue

Below: One memorial, but it took several photos taken at different angles to try to do justice to the memorial.

sign for Josh Boock Memorial
Josh Boock Memorial
Josh Boock Memorial
Josh Boock Memorial
Josh Boock Memorial
the story of Lobo
Lobo
 
Babe sign
Babe - the baseball player statue
a bird
a bird
sign about Niiemii
Karen Duquette and Niiemi

Poor Chief Bemidji, namesake of the city, is ignored in favor of Paul Bunyan and Babe who stand just down the street. The colorful statue, made of wood and concrete, was built by a retired lumberjack in 1952. He is Downtown, on the lake side of Highway 197/Bemidji Ave., directly across the street from the gas station at the corner of Bemidji Ave. and 4th Street

Chief Bemidji plaque
Karen Duquette and Chief Bemidji

These two giant oddities are in front of a store, across the street from Paul Bunyan and Babe.

a painted groundbog
a big indian statue
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Menu for the two RV Gypsies Adventures
in Bemidji, Minnesota
July 1, 2013

You may visit these three (3) sites in any order you choose.
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Oddities in Bemidji

Aiton Heights Fire Tower

Itasca State Park/Mississippi Headwaters/Mary Gibbs Center

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go to the next adventure of the two RV GypsiesAFTER you have seen all three sections above, please continue on to the adventures of the two RV Gypsies in Saskatchewan, Canada- Castle Butte, Home of the Giant, Moose Mountain, and more