Article by Cari Bousfield
Without giving away my age, I will tell you that I have lived in North Dakota for most of my life. I was born in Montana but my parents, both originally from Watford City moved back to the state when I was about five months old. In the year 2000, I surprised myself and my family and friends by moving to North Carolina. While I loved living down there and quite enjoyed their nice, warm winters, home was beckoning me back.
So you see, I have lived most of my life in this wonderful state. For as long as I have lived here though, there are still places in North Dakota I would love to see and events I would like to attend. So consider this my bucket list, if you will, of things this North Dakota gal would still like to do right here in this great state.
The Medora Musical
Hard to believe, right? In the thirty-some years I have lived here, not once have I ever attended the number one must-see musical event in North Dakota. Last summer when my sister was visiting from Nebraska, some members of my family spontaneously decided to drive from here in Bismarck to Medora to check it out. Unfortunately, being the mom of a daughter with special needs does not really lend itself to a life of spontaneity and for that reason and others, I wasn’t able to go along. I was so close!
Thankfully, the Medora musical is something that happens every summer, so at least I’ll have plenty more chances to knock this one off my list.
Maah Daah Hey Trail
I have always dreamed of someday riding this trail on horseback. There are many, many reasons this dream has not become a reality for me. One is that I don’t even own a horse. Another is while I loved horseback riding growing up, I haven’t ridden a horse in over 10 years. That is, unless you count the brief five minutes I rode around in a corral with my daughter about five summers ago.
In case you’re not familiar with it, the trail is 96 miles that connects the northern and southern portions of my favorite park (which by the way I’ve been to many times), the Theodore Roosevelt National Park. Maah Daah Hey is a phrase used by the Mandan Indians to mean “an area that has been or will be around for a long time.” I love this, especially with so much changing in the western part of the state.
International Peace Gardens
This one’s another shocker, especially since I am married to a Canadian! Come to think of it, that would have been a great place to get married. To my credit, I did visit the Peace Gardens when I was very little and I did attend Bible camp at Lake Metigoshe when I was about nine years old. But now being married to a Canadian, I would love for us to go back there together and I know it would be a great experience for our 10-year old.
I’ll be the first to admit I am proud of my Scandinavian heritage but have never attended the Norsk Hostfest – the premier event for Norwegians and Swedes alike. The festival has been going strong since 1978 and tens of thousands of people from across North America attend the annual event.
I just took a look at this year’s entertainment lineup and who knows, this could be the year to go! The Gaither Vocal Band will be there and Merle Haggard! Jennifer Nettles from Sugarland will be there too. I don’t really listen to country music anymore but thanks to seeing her on Sesame Street, I do know who she is and I bet my daughter would love to see her live. Hmmm, I may have a future trip to plan.
Tim Horton’s in Grand Forks
Some of you may be asking, what the heck is Tim Horton’s? Even though it’s only been in Grand Forks since December of last year, it is a truly historical place. Tim Horton’s is a Canadian coffee shop founded by a professional hockey player from Hamilton, Ontario. The Grand Forks coffee shop is the first one in North Dakota. This is huge for my family. Like I said earlier, my hubby is from Canada and when he found out Tim Horton’s was coming to North Dakota his first thought was, “I guess God really has destined me to be here.”
Before opening in Grand Forks, the closest Tim Horton’s on this side of the border was all the way in Michigan. Whenever we have traveled to Toronto to visit my Canadian family, we had to plan our trip according to the availability of Tim Horton’s along our route. I can honestly say, Michigan is a long way to travel before getting some good coffee!
The great news is that Tim Horton’s is also coming to Fargo and Minot and I’m betting the famous Canadian coffee will make its way to Bismarck too!
There you have it – five places in North Dakota this North Dakota gal has never been. What are some places in North Dakota you would like to see or some events you would love to attend? If you’re not from North Dakota, is there once place you’ve heard about that you would like to see?
Cari Bousfield is a freelance writer who loves to blog and share all that God has done in her life through her writing. She has been married to her husband Rob for almost 12 years and together they are raising their amazing daughter, Faith. They currently reside in Bismarck.