Explore Northeast Minnesota Lake Vermilion - Rainy Lake - Blueberry Festival in Ely
July 22-25, 2020
Explore Northeast Minnesota Lake Vermilion - Rainy Lake - Blueberry Festival in Ely July 22-25, 2020
Voyageur's National Park and Cruise on Rainy Lake in International Falls, MN Fortune Bay Casino on Lake Vermilion The Blueberry Festival . NOvA Fermalab-Ash River Soudan Underground State Park Vince Shute Bear Sanctuary in Orr The Root Beer Lady, Dorothy Molter's Cabin in Ely
We'll help arrange an opportunity to fish one evening on Lake Vermilion for those Interested. (Up to 12 Max) Seating is limited on this tour.
Here’s What We’ve Included in the Explore Northeast MN Tour:
Round Trip Motor Coach Transportation with Trobec Bus Company to include boarding in the following towns; Bloomington, North Branch, Hinckley, Sartell, Rice, Little Falls, Brainerd and Cloquet ( Plus Hibbing, Virginia & Eveleth)
Three Nights at the Fortune Bay Hotel & Casino on Lake Vermilion
Voyageur's National Park and a Narrated Cruise on Rainy Lake
Dorothy Molter's Cabin (Root Beer Lady) & Blueberry Festival in Ely
(music, food and many wonderful crafts at Whiteside Park)
Vince Shute Bear Sanctuary in Orr and the Underground Mine in Soudan and the U of M NOvA Project in Ash River
Hibbing High School Auditorium, Veteran's Memorial "Shoulder to Shoulder" and Drive Across the Tallest Bridge in Minnesota - The New I-53 Bridge
Six Meals: Three Breakfasts, One Lunch, and Two Dinners
Luggage Handling, Taxes, Tips for Porters & Included Meals, and Fully Guided with a Travel Host.
Deposits/ Registrations: Deposit of $100 per person due when registering. Deposits become non-refundable with cancellations after 4/4/20.
Final Balance: Balance due on June 15, 2020. Travel documents will arrive in late June.
Refunds / Travel Insurance: Monies returned with cancellations made between April 04 -June 15, 2020 are contingent to what Happy Trails Tours receives from hotel, charter, tour companies, restaurant, etc. There are no refunds with cancellations made after June 22, 2020. Travel Insurance is available for an additional cost to help cover money lost due to unexpected, last minute, or trip interruption cancellations.
We need a minimum of 30 travelers - If the numbers fall below 30, the trip runs the risk of being cancelled. All monies will be refunded if Happy Trails Tours cancels this tour.
Wed, July 22th Day 1; Travel North along I-35 / 1-53 / 1-169 to the Iron Range Cities - Lake Vermilion: Begin with early morning departures on your Happy Trails "Explore Northeast Minnesota" Tour at various venue's throughout the Southern and Central part of the state. You'll ride in style on a lovely state-of -the art Trobec Motor Coach with drivers that have your utmost safety and care in mind. Boarding locations offered will begin in Bloomington, (near the Minneapolis/St Paul Airport); Anoka, North Branch and Hinckley. Other boarding locations offered will include Sartell, Rice, Little Falls and Baxter area and Cloquet. A great day is planned as we embark NORTH along interstate 35 - I-53 with the start of our journey with a bit of Iron Range history.
12:00 pm- We'll arrive to Hibbing, hometown of Bob Dylan, which will also include a drive by his home. This is where we'll make time for lunch (paying on our own) before visiting the Hibbing High School Auditorium. This stop is one of the Iron Range and Hibbing's most beloved treasures. Built is the early 20's during the mining boom, this 1805 seat theater has hosted famous guests including the Boston Pops and John F Kennedy. From here, we'll travel northeast along #169 to Virginia routing ourselves to I-53 so that we cross over the brand new Highway 53 Bridge, the tallest bridge in the state of Minnesota (204 feet @ a cost of $230 Million) before winding our way to Bailey's Lake in downtown Virginia to meet Artist, Gareth Andrews, designer and creator of the Veteran's Memorial, "Shoulder to Shoulder - Even the Fallen Stand Tall". Before leaving town, for all those with a sweet tooth, we can't miss visiting one of Virginia's iconic establishments...Canelakes Candy Store. 5:30 pm- Estimated arrival to the Fortune Bay Hotel and Casino in Tower, MN (Three Nights) Amenities: This property has an indoor pool, full service restaurant, two beds in the room, all non-smoking hotel, an attached casino, indoor pool, hot tub, sauna, coffeemakers, irons and ironing boards in the rooms. 6:00 pm- We've included a Walleye Pike Dinner (Or Chicken Breast, Vegetarian/ Vegan if you prefer). The evening is open for you enjoy as per your own agenda. Please let us know if you might be interested in dropping a line in the water. We are happy to assist you in this - either in arranging for a later evening of fishing for a couple of hours or perhaps just off the dock. Let us know in case we need to arrange for a fishing guide, fishing gear, etc....
Thur, July 23rd Day 2: Beautiful Voyageur National Park - Rainy Lake & International Falls 7:00 am- Enjoy a nice full breakfast before boarding the coach for International Falls. We'll continue our focus NORTH toward Voyageur National Park located on Rainy Lake. The park's name commemorates the voyageurs, French-Canadian fur traders who were the first European settlers to f f frequently travel through the area. Voyageurs National Park lies within the heart of the North American Continent. Here you can see and touch rocks half as old as the world, experience the life of a voyageur, experience the sights and sounds of a boreal forest.
We'll visit the Rainy Lake Visitor's Center before boarding the boat and going out on the lake for the next several hours. When making plans this far in advance, the national park service is still planning the route as to exactly what stops we will make on our narrated boat ride ... but rest assured, we'll get off the boat and experience this day to it's fullest. Lunch is included today. 10:00 pm- We'll return to the hotel. Plan to be out most of this day until we know the park schedule for the boat tour.
Fri, July 24th Day 3: Soudan Underground Mine - U of M NoVA Project - Bear Sanctuary in Orr 7:00-9:00 am - A wonderful included full breakfast await us prior to our day's adventures in beautiful Northeast Minnesota! This morning our tour will begin at the Soudan UndergroundState Park in Tower. Immigrants looking for a better life came to the area to mine what began as open pit mines. Due to safety concerns, mining was moved underground. Nicknamed the Cadillac of underground mines, Soudan was in operation from 1882 to 1962. Over the years, 54 miles of tunnels were dug 2,350 feet deep, and more than 15.5 million tons of ore were mined. Tours show visitors actual mine settings and the various equipment used over the decades the mine was operation, from candles to headlights, chisels to jackhammers. This tour involves an 1/2 mile elevator ride taking you to the 27th level. The mine is very cool (51 degrees). Be sure to dress warm for this event. Let us know if you are not able to do this tour. From here we'll continue to Ash River... what a delightful community nestled along the Ash River which is the gateway into Voyageur National Park. We'll get our lunch in town, paying on our own, in Ash River before our next stop along our journey. University of Minnesota’s FermiLab NOvA Project in Ash River is gathering the data on tiny cosmic particles called neutrinos in hopes that this study may eventually show them how the universe evolved over billions of years. The laboratory in Ash River contains a 300- ton neutrino detector that receives beams of neutrinos from a much larger facility in Illinois. The trip takes less than three milliseconds. Scientists in Ash River are eager to discover how and why neutrinos change as they move, and what those changes can tell us about our past and our future. This lab is unbelievable! Whether you are into science and physics or this subject doesn't interest you at all, you ARE going to be amazed at the U of M's NoVA Fermalab in Ash River.
3:30 pm- Once we complete our visit here, we've got one more unbelievable place to bring you.... It's the Vince Shute Bear Sanctuary. Half a century ago, a Minnesota logger who lived in a forest full of hungry bears decided that if you can't beat 'em, join 'em. By the time he died at age 86, Vince Shute had fed generations of black bears, become best friends with a bear named Brownie and inspired bear-lovers all over the world. We'll ride into the lumber camp and learn about this incredible story. It's not unusual to see 30 -50+ bears come to feed. We could see anywhere from this year's cubs and yearlings to very old bears that have been coming there for many, many years. People come from all over the world to study them and learn about the American Black Bears. Dinner is included tonight. 7:00 pm- After dinner, we'll return to the lovely Fortune Bay Resort
Sat, July 25th Day 4: Travel to Ely .... Dorothy Molter's Cabin and the Blueberry Festival 7:00-9:00 am - A wonderful included full breakfast await us. Travel to Ely- just a short drive from Orr.
9:30 am- Arrive to Dorothy Molter's Cabin. Dorothy was a legendary resident of Minnesota’s famed Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW). For most of 56 years, she lived alone on the Isle of Pines on Knife Lake, 15 miles from the nearest road. When Dorothy died in 1986, she was the last remaining non-indigenous year-round inhabitant of the BWCAW and a legend of the Northwoods. After Dorothy's death, permission was granted to disassemble her cabins and bring her personal belongings to Ely. We'll be sure to enjoy a ice-cold bottle of Rootbeer in Dorothy's memory before leaving here.
10:45 am - Re-board the coach and travel a few blocks to our next venue - Home of the Ely's Annual Blueberry Festival. The festival is held in Ely’s beautiful Whiteside Park where you can find wood and leather products, metal art, photography, paintings, jewelry and pottery, and many other unique hand-crafted items While you are shopping for that special one of a kind original piece of art you may want to take a break and listen to one of the musical acts that are scheduled everyday. There are activities for the children as well like the bungie jump and other amusements. Make sure you visit the food court with all kinds of tempting food everything from cream cheese wontons and seafood to authentic Polish Pierogis. There of course are fresh blueberry pies by the slice with ice cream or a whole pie. You are right downtown so if you wish to shop the downtown vendors as well, you've got ample time to enjoy yourselves today.
3:30 pm- Board the coach and begin our journey homeward! 5:30 pm- Estimated arrival to Cloquet 8:15 pm- Baxter 8:45 pm -Little Falls 9:15 pm to Sartell) 6:30 - 7:00 pm - (1/2 hour fast food stop in Hinckley) 8:00 pm- arrival to North Branch 9:30 pm- arrival to Bloomington Changes: We reserve the right to adjust this schedule for the benefit of all traveling. If a change of hotel, restaurant or an attraction occurs, we’ll replace it with one of equal value or better. As always… we’ll inform you of any changes as we learn of them. Disclaimer: Happy Trails Tours acts only as an agent for the various independent suppliers that provide hotel accommodations, transportation, theater, or other services connected with this tour. Such services are subject to the terms and conditions of those suppliers. Happy Trails Tours, INC and their respective employees, agents, representatives accept no liability whatsoever for any injury, damage, loss, accident, delay, or any other default of any company or person in performing these services. Responsibility is not accepted for losses, injury, damages or expenses of any kind due to sickness, weather, strikes, hostilities, wars, terrorist acts, acts of nature, local laws or other causes. All services and accommodations are subject to the laws and regulations of country in which they are provided. Happy Trails Tours INC is not responsible for any baggage or personal effects of any individual participating in the tours/trips arranged by Happy Trails Tours. Individual travelers are responsible for purchasing a travel insurance policy, if desired, that will cover some of the expenses associated with the loss of luggage or personal effects
The New Highway #53 Bridge connecting the Iron Range Cities of Virginia and Eveleth.