Summer 2016, time again for the Steiner Family Reunion and an excuse to travel the country. Ever since the late 1990s, my siblings and I have endeavored to rotate the duties of an annual family reunion. We’ve been successful, not only in keeping up the new tradition, but encouraging the next generation to pick up the baton and move forward now that many of my generation have gone to their reward.
This year, the family of my late brother Gerald hosted the reunion at Lynchburg Tennessee. The last time we were in Lynchburg for the family reunion, we flew (which is another adventure I will share with you in a future post.) This time, we decided to drive and make some stops along the way to capture some photos of attractions in states I haven’t yet featured here on Journeys with Johnbo. Our travel itinerary would be a loop, traveling through Wisconsin and Illinois to Tennessee, and returning to North Dakota via Missouri and Iowa. In the next few weeks, Travel Tuesday will feature places we visited and photographed along the way. Our first overnight found us in Madison, Wisconsin.
We arrived in Madison in late afternoon, just before 5 PM. My son and his wife are one-time residents of the city, having lived there during college days. Knowing their history with the city, I asked for advice on places to go and things to see. Of course, with our late arrival, some of the places recommended were closed for the day. But as luck would have it, we wouldn’t miss out on the fun.
First things first, though. My son had an errand for us to run. When I inquired about things to do in Madison, he mentioned he would love it if we would stop by Fraboni’s and pick up a favorite sauce, the taste of which he missed since leaving Madison. Happy to oblige, we put the grocery/deli in Google Maps on the Smart Phone, and it led us right there… We arrived at 5:10 PM, just 10 minutes after they closed for the day, and they wouldn’t reopen in the morning until long after we’ve left Madison.
Downtown Madison is located near the juncture of two lakes, Mendota and Monona. The view of the city skyline from the shore of Lake Monona provides a glimpse of Wisconsin’s capital city’s downtown area. For over twenty years, the city’s Fourth of July fireworks celebration found people gathering along the shore of Lake Monona to view the fireworks launched from barges on the lake. Rhythm and Booms, as the celebration was called, featured a choreographed display synchronized to music delivered to the audience by local radio broadcast. Unfortunately, amid funding concerns and other reasons, Rhythm and Booms was discontinued in 2015.
On our way to Fraboni’s Deli, though, we saw lots of pedestrian traffic and the trip down the road between the two lakes was detoured around some areas of the highway that were blocked off due to a celebration of some sort. Coincidently, June 25, our arrival date, was the Festival Shake the Lake event. Festival Foods, a local grocery chain, picked up the ball that the city of Madison dropped and with the help of community organizers put together a replacement for Rhythm and Booms. The gallery of images below features views of the lake and the Festival. Click on an image to enlarge it and to scroll through the gallery.
Due to our long day of travelling, we opted to miss out on the featured fireworks knowing that we would be on the road to Nashville, our next stop, leaving early the next morning. Next week we visit Honky Tonk Row, the famous Broadway Street in Nashville, Tennessee.