Journeys of Discovery: More exploring on America’s scenic River Road

Sep 18, 2018

Correspondent Tom Wilmer traverses the Great River Road in Wisconsin—from Praire du Chien in the southwest to the hip university town of La Crosse.

Wilmer starts his journey with travel insights from Stephanie Klett, Wisconsin’s cabinet secretary for tourism. And Robert Moses, president of the Prairie Du Chien Area Chamber of Commerce, talks about the city’s history and its year-round outdoor attractions.

Mary Elise Antoine, a Wisconsin historian based in Praire du Chien (Wisconsin’s second oldest city), talks about Fort Crawford and the U.S. Army soldiers stationed there before the Civil War. 

A. J. Frels, executive director of the La Crosse County Convention & Visitors Bureau, talks about the vibrant growth of the university town’s independently-owned retail shops, diners, brew pubs, and the trendy Charmant Hotel. It was ranked "#2 in America" by Trip Advisor’s Travelers’ Choice Awards 2017.  

Maria Norberg, owner of Grounded Patio Café in downtown La Crosse, shares her life journey from university student to business owner and how she—and her millennial friends—are reinventing and invigorating the city’s business community. She also talks about the city's affordability factor; many young people don’t need to rent since homeownership is very accessible, according to Norberg.

And finally, Doug Aloisi, project mananger at U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's Genoa National Fish Hatcthery, talks about the the facility's interpretive services for school children and its partnership with Wisconsin's Great River Road to showcase the region's history and destinations along the Mississippi River.

You are invited to subscribe to the Lowell Thomas Award-winning travel show podcast, Journeys of Discovery with Tom Wilmer, featured on the NPR Podcast DirectoryApple Podcast, the NPR One App & Stitcher.com. Twitter: TomCWilmer. Instagram: Thomas.Wilmer. Member of the National Press Club in Washington D.C.