Lake Harriet Bandshell / The Claddaugh

The Bandshell at Lake Harriet

A sunny summer afternoon at the Bandshell

Minneapolis urbanites share some special weekend gathering places.  I visited one of them – the Lake Harriet Bandshell – for the first time last week.  There my companions and I (and probably a couple hundred other people!) listened to a sweet sampling from the Minneapolis Pops Orchestra We were seated on benches, on picnic tables, in lawn chairs and on blankets.  We soaked up a beautiful summer day in the sun or shade, whichever was our preference.  We got there on foot, on bikes, in cars, by trolley or by boat.  We came alone or with companions; some of brought our kids or dogs.  And while waiting for the music to begin we lounged, played horseshoes, hit volleyballs, picnicked, fished, read or people-watched.   We did our individual things together, but without intruding on our neighbors, in a regular “Minnesota Nice” fashion.

By the way, my favorite piece that day was “La Campanella” by Frantz Liszt.  If you go to Wikipedia’s listing for it, you can hear it performed by piano, complete with the very difficult fourth-and-fifth finger trill (click the link on the Wiki page at top right).  It’s beautiful, and worth six minutes of your time.

How wonderful that the bandshell offers free entertainment (mostly music) almost every summer night.  The schedule is available online and offers something for everyone.  The bandshell itself is picturesque in front of its Lake Harriet backdrop.  And concessions offer sips and bites that appeal to all age groups.

A beautiful home near Lake Harriet

This was a favorite home en route to the bandshell - click on the photo and you can see it larger and in more detail (on most computers)

Even the walk to and from was full of the interesting.  Homes of varying architecture and landscaping on one side, lakefront on the other.  Bikes with two wheels or three wheels ambled by, some motorized and some not.  I passed walkers, joggers, runners and sunbathers of every kind and in every manner of dress, or they passed me.  And it was comfortable – “no hurry, no stress, just enjoy” seemed to be the theme.  Thanks to Bonnie and Cindy for sharing it and the afternoon with me!

Later in the week I dined at The Claddaugh Irish Pub in Maple Grove for the first time.  The menu offers interesting  specialties and descriptions, which always appeals to me.  The drink menu is the same in individuality and tone.  Decorating was intended to “feel” like an Irish pub, and did!  (At least as I imagine it).  With restaurants located in fifteen states, the Claddaugh was a delicious and fun lunch while out running errands.

Exploring new places, things and eateries gives me great joy and keeps life exciting.  Have you been out finding your own new places, things and/or eateries recently?  Please share by commenting…I’d love to read about it!  And thanks to all of you who visited the site these past weeks – your interest is appreciated!

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7 responses

  1. Concerts at the Lake Harriett band shell have been a favorite of our family for years. Next time you’re there, head down to Linden Hills, just to the west of the lake, and visit Sebastian Joe’s. You won’t be disappointed!

  2. Two of my favorite places this week! The kids know how to find the Elf Tree on the south side of the lake and there is a fabulous consignment shop a few blocks off on Penn. George and I treat ourselves to The Claddagh on special occasions. Do you have any plans for this week?

  3. Yes, the food and drink are great at The Claudaugh, which incidently is both a ring of friendship/love to the Irish as well as a destination on Galway Bay, as noted in the ol’ Irish ballad.

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