Thumbs up all around for our big day in Fairbanks. In fact, five stars.
We started off in Creamer’s Field (after an adventurous turn at the Mc Donald’s drive-through to get coffees. Note to self: just go inside the store). We had a nice viewing of some geese and (sandhill) cranes in the old fields and then took a walk along their boreal forest. We then visited the University of Alaska campus and took in the Museum of the North (you can skip this one, it’s updated and cramped. Good information, just can use some reorganizing and updating), Large Animal Research Station (we’ve seen of a lot of Musk Ox etc, so we waved to them from the field), and a quick tour around the Georgeson Botanical Garden (OK, this stop was cool and they have active bee hives which makes it even cooler). We had a delicious lunch at the Cookie Jar (have the corned beef hash) and then took off for the North Pole, a small (real) town outside of Fairbanks. This place was on par with South of the Border, but less cool and with less amusement factor. I bought some ornaments and felt bad for the reindeer who were captive in a small, cramped space. Oh well.
We then headed to downtown Fairbanks and stopped by the cool visitor’s center. This place was awesome and had a cool exhibit on the area and Alaska in general. Loved it! So cool. THEN we headed to the magical land known as Pioneer Park! Their website doesn’t do them justice. This is a little historical town with original buildings. Think of Frontierland at Disney, but without rides. It’s cute. It’s charming. It’s free. It was only $2 to ride the train, which went around the park TWICE. Twice. And everyone was so nice and friendly. Fun Fun Fun. I loved it. We then went to Silver Gulch brewery for dinner. Dear god, what a great place. Food and beer was wonderful. From the outside, the place looks very old, but is spacious and modern inside.
We are trying to stay up to catch the northern lights and/or the meteor shower tonight. Tomorrow we are off to Healy and getting ready for our Denali stay….