This afternoon we went to a place we have visited on all our trips to Fairbanks. It is the Pioneer Park (formerly known as AlaskaLand, but changed to keep people from thinking it was a DisneyLand experience). To me it is a village of old cabins and buildings mostly built when Fairbanks was established. The buildings have been moved from their original locations throughout the town and placed on several streets. They now house eating establishments, museums, gift shops. Most have a plaque outside that tells you who owned the building and where in Fairbanks it was moved from.
|Cruise-In on the streets of Pioneer Village|
It’s fun walking the wooden sidewalks, looking in the windows or browsing through the merchandise inside the shops. The Pick N Poke Shop had a stuffed Artic Wolf on display. It is a beautiful animal. Inside they sold chocolate covered peanuts, which they sold as moose poop. They also sold real necklaces and earrings made of lacquered moose poop. I bought several sets to bring back to friends and family members. J Get in line please.
There was a Disney feel at the Palace Theater. A long line of people rounded the building. We didn’t go in for the show this time, but we have seen the live stage show about the settlers in Fairbanks. As I remember it, it was funny.
The best part of the trip to Pioneer Park is the Alaskan Salmon Bake. They used to have this all over the state, but I noticed on the way up, there weren’t as many as their used to be. You enter the Salmon Bake through an underground mine shaft. When you come back into the sunlight, you are greeted by trees and flowers and old mining equipment surrounded with picnic benches. There are different stations set up outside the picnic area and the indoor dining hall.
|Me at the entrance--Richard inside the mine shaft|
|Me trying to decide which food station to go to first. LOL|
You pay and are given a big plate. You go to the first station which is a salad bar, roasted red potatoes, baked beans, sourdough rolls. Then you go to a huge, circular grill where you can get all you want Prime Rib, grilled salmon, and beer battered Bering Sea Cod. Then you go to the condiment station to get tartar sauce, horseradish sauce, etc. Then to the beverage bar to get your drink. After you finish with all that, you go to the coffee and dessert cabin. There they had shortcake, sweet blueberries, chocolate cake and white cake with white frosting. Everything was really good. Usually we only go one time while we are here because the food is too good to say no to. Not that I ever say NO to food, but you know what I mean.
|Prime Rib, beer battered Bering Sea Cod, grilled Salmon|
This is a cache. It is an important thing in the Northland. It is a small building placed high on poles which provides safe storage for food and supplies from bears and other wildlife. You see them in many places through Alaska.
|Cache on display at Pioneer Park|
Last night we were coming home from the store at around 10:30 at night. This is how daylight it still was. It is so strange to see so many cars, people jogging, adults and kids on bicycles so late at night, but it is broad daylight. By the way, I am amazed at how many cyclists we see along the road. I don’t mean in town. I mean on the highway we came in on with stretches for miles of nothing but scenery and moose, bears, and buffalos. Maybe I’m just a wimp, but even if I could physically ride a ten speed bike up a 7% grade, I’d be scared to death of the wildlife.
|10:30 at night|
We have not made a trip anywhere in the past three days without going by the Transfer Site. I swear Richard is addicted. It is the craziest thing I’ve seen in a long time. Every time we go by there, the front parking spaces are all taken. We park second or third row back. Tonight there was a washing machine and a two-piece sofa set. I prayed really hard that Richard wouldn’t decide we couldn’t live without any of that. You think I jest? You have no idea how many times we’ve been driving home and pass a pile of junk and he would make me stand by the side of the road so no one could steal his treasure until he ran to the house to get his truck. I’m not sure what the heck he thought I would do to stop someone from taking a window air conditioner or dining room chairs or a pinball machine with only 2 remaining legs. Thankfully, I never had to find out. Well, there was that one time Little Roy called and Richard talked to him and, although he says not, I think he forgot about me.
|Vehicles lined in front of the drop off corner of the |
We arrived in Alaska just in time to see the thickets all along the highway and pretty much everywhere alive with wild roses. Their fragrance is strong, but pleasant and fills the air when you are out walking or if you have your car windows down when you drive by them.
|Wild Rose Thicket right by the place we are staying.|
Until next time,