Welcome to MidwestWeekends.com! I'm Beth Gauper, and for more than 20 years, I've written about vacation travel in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa, northern Illinois and western Michigan.
I'll tell you where to find the best places to stay and eat and the festivals you should be sure to catch. I'll tell you where to shop and where to take the kids. If you like to hike and bike and paddle, I know the best places to go.
You can read stories about your favorite destinations or skip to the Trip Tips, where I give you a choice of the best places to stay and things to do.
If you don't know where you want to go, visit the Plan a Trip page to get ideas. Our home page is where you'll find the most timely stories, geared to the season.
You'll find a round-up of the region's best festivals on our Events Calendar. If you want to run out the door right now, look for FastPlans, quick itineraries with links to longer stories.
We're adding and updating every day so you can have the best and most up-to-date information about travel in the Upper Midwest. If you see a broken link or something that needs updating, please let us know.
When I point you toward a place, it's because I think you'll like it, not because someone is paying me to plug it. Though I list many places I think you'll want to check out, I recommend only those I've visited myself.
I'm lucky because I got to know the Upper Midwest while writing weekly travel columns for the St. Paul Pioneer Press, which paid my salary and travel expenses for 14 years.
Now I'm exploring on my own, still providing unvarnished opinions and tips. I hope you'll find value in the work we're doing.
It took another kind of travel expert to build this site. The man behind the screen is Torsten Müller, my husband and a fantastic developer. We live in Minneapolis.
Thanks for stopping by MidwestWeekends. Check back weekly, or sign up for our free newsletter and have new stories and the week's tips delivered to you.
We also pass along fun little tidbits on our Facebook page, and you can follow us on Twitter.
If you like what you see here, please tell a friend about us. If you like the places we recommend, please tell the owners that MidwestWeekends sent you.
And we're always happy to receive ideas, comments and updates. Please use the contact form to write us.