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Winnewissa Falls

Visiting Winnewissa Falls with Lisa Crayford

Join Lisa Crayford, author of Waterfalls of Minnesota, on a journey to Winnewissa Falls Winnewissa Falls is situated amid the pipestone quarries at Pipestone National Monument. The falls, along with the surrounding quarries, are considered sacred by many American Indians. Our journey to Winnewissa Falls began on a rainy Saturday morning in June. With umbrellas in hand, we first headed up to the visitor center, which houses the Upper Midwest Indian Cultural Center. It’s home to a gift shop, museum exhibits, a bookstore, and a 22-minute film. The quarries here have produced pipestone (also known as Catlinite) for thousands of years. The soft, malleable stone is used in ceremonial objects, especially pipes. Quarrying is limited to American Indians, but, during the summer months, American Indians sometimes lead cultural demonstrations where visitors can see pipestone carving in progress. When you are ready to head to the waterfall, grab a trail map. You’ll want to plan on a good hour for the 0.75-mile nature walk, which is known as the circle tour. On...

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Halloween and Scary Bats

We are excited to share Stan Tekiela’s first blog post on our website today. Stan will be contributing regularly for your reading pleasure. So, without further ado, here is his post about scary bats—just in time for Halloween! At the end of October, we tend to contemplate scary animals. Well, I guess I understand. After all, Halloween plays a huge part in our culture. But what do you know about Halloween? Very basically, in ancient days, people believed we were switching over from a season of life to a season of death at this time of year. At the end of summer and fall (warm and prosperous seasons), food would become scarce and people naturally worried about surviving another winter. So it makes sense that in the past this was a frightening time of year. It was only later, in more modern times, that we began to associate scary animals with Halloween. By the way, the name Halloween...

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Dinosaur Destinations

John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

A Museum and Cenozoic Mammal Fossil Beds Site Jon Kramer, Julie Martinez, and Vernon Morris, authors of the book Dinosaur Destinations, explore the most exciting dinosaur and fossil sites near you. Today we take a look at the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument in Oregon. John Day Fossil Beds National Monument is one of the greatest geological and paleontological preserves on Earth. Consisting of three separate land units, the fossil record here spans an incredible 41 million years, covering most of the Cenozoic Era, aka the “Age of Mammals.” So can you guess what kind of fossils you’ll find here? Well, they aren’t dinosaurs! Over millions of years, the area was home to all kinds of incredible mammals: from primitive rhinos and three-toed horses, to saber-toothed cats and huge short-faced bears. And those are just a start! The Monument is also home to the famous Painted Hills, which are aptly named. Long story short: A visit is well worth the trip,...

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Tall Ships

Tall Ships on the Great Lakes

Whether you witness a tall ship breaking over the horizon or see one up close at a festival, there’s nothing quite like being in the presence of a full-fledged sailing ship. These majestic vessels are often thought of as ocean-going vessels, but many tall ships ply the waters of the Great Lakes. Some have homeports on the Great Lakes, whereas others are based abroad and only visit the region occasionally. Kaitlin Morrison, author of Tall Ships: History Comes to Life on the Great Lakes, shares with us the sea story of the Friends Good Will. A Tall Ship Sails Great Lakes as a Memorial to the Original that Served in the War of 1812 Friends Good Will is a replica of the famous warship of the same name that served in the War of 1812. The original ship was constructed in 1810 and participated in the Battle of Lake Erie. She was built as a merchant ship and was transporting fresh supplies to...

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Yellow Morel Mushrooms

Mushrooms of the Northeast

Discovering the Wonderful World of Mushrooms With mushrooms, the sheer number of possibilities makes them a challenging but fascinating subject. Within the large number of different mushroom species, there is an amazing variety of characteristics. Additionally, some of the features are tactile or even sensory elements, like smell or taste. Identifying mushrooms from a book is a good way to begin learning about them, but when edibility is your goal you must be extremely careful. It is recommended to obtain a first-hand, positive ID from an expert before eating any mushroom, as many of the toxic varieties look similar to the edible ones and could make you very ill, or even kill you! It is tempting to look for a simple rule or test that tells you whether an unknown mushroom is edible; unfortunately, no such rule exists. Taking the time to learn how to identify each species by its unique characteristics (even though some may be hard to see) is the only appropriate...

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Children reading books

Get Kids Reading in Five Easy Steps

Parents and teachers everywhere want to get kids reading—and with good reason. Reading isn’t just relaxing and peaceful; it also increases intelligence, improves communication skills, and even helps readers to better understand others’ feelings and emotions. And reading is fun too! But what are we to do for children who don’t like it? Will these reluctant readers ever find joy in books? Yes, it’s absolutely possible with the right approach. Here are five steps to get you started. 1. Read to Them If you want to get kids reading, begin by sharing books on a regular basis. For younger children, a story before bed is always welcome. At my house, the 6-year-old loves silly (yet educational!) books like Whose Butt? and Critter Litter. For reluctant readers who are “too old” for bedtime stories, get creative. Perhaps dig out a book of interest after dinner and share a chapter or a short story. With Halloween approaching,...

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Monsters of the Midwest

Creepy Tales of Monsters Just in Time for Halloween Does telling creepy tales around the campfire sound like a perfect night out? Is scaring yourself silly your idea of a good time? Well, the Midwest is home to some pretty spooky ghost stories, but wait until you read about the region’s terrifying monsters in our latest book, Monsters of the Midwest: True Tales of Bigfoot, Werewolves & Other Legendary Creatures by Jessica Freeburg and Natalie Fowler. Are you brave enough to find out about monsters and the other chilling creatures that have been seen in the Heartland? In their book Monsters of the Midwest,  paranormal investigators Jessica Freeburg and Natalie Fowler share reportedly true accounts of the strangest, most bizarre sightings of Big Foot, werewolves, and other monsters. Their collection of stories is sure to keep you up at night. Try to remember: That noise you hear… it’s probably just the wind. If you are a skeptic, remember...

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The Amazing World of Dinosaurs

The Amazing World of Dinosaurs

Dinosaurs have filled us with wonder since the first monstrous bones were pulled from the earth hundreds of years ago. For centuries, we imagined dinosaurs as giant, clumsy brutes—but science has since revealed them to be so much more. They were living, breathing animals that had moments of great power and ferocity, but also periods of quiet beauty. Of course, science cannot tell us how they behaved or how they interacted with their environments. For that, we need our imaginations. Amazing paleoart reflects our current knowledge of these breathtaking creatures. The Amazing World of Dinosaurs is found at the intersection where imagination and knowledge meet. It features breathtaking artwork that accurately reflects our current knowledge. These captivating images are paired with James Kuether’s research and insights, which make dinosaurs and the Mesozoic Era accessible to anyone. Let James Kuether take you on an Illustrated Journey Through the Mesozoic Era. From famous creatures like Tyrannosaurus rex to lesser-known...

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Maggie the One-Eyed Peregrine Falcon

Meet Maggie

Maggie the Peregrine Falcon is a special bird, and we consider her a friend of ours here at the Adventure Publications blog. Maggie is special because she is a survivor. And Maggie has one eye. Maggie the One-Eyed Peregrine Falcon is a true story told in collaboration with the Wildlife Center of Virginia, the animal hospital where Maggie lives. The folks at the Wildlife Center do amazing work, and Maggie’s story is just one of hundreds they could share with you. Maggie’s Story When this children’s book begins, Maggie has just learned to fly when she crashes into the side of a building. She falls to the ground, alone and injured. Who will help her? This true story explains how wildlife hospitals rescue and treat injured animals. Their goal is to release the animals back into the wild. Sometimes, this isn’t possible—but there can still be a happy ending. Maggie’s story is just...

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Super Animal Powers

Super Animal Powers Earns Mom’s Choice Award

Super Animal Powers Earns Mom’s Choice Award Ahead of Publication! Acclaimed children’s author and superhero expert Ryan Jacobson joins forces with award-winning naturalist and photographer Stan Tekiela to spotlight 13 North American animals and their astonishing super powers, such as the Peregrine Falcon’s “super speed” and the Horned Lizard’s “laser eyes.” Animals are amazing—you might even say they’re super! They have special abilities that you’ve only seen in comic books and on your favorite cartoons. The powers that some animals possess are sure to surprise and delight. Young readers will never look at animals the same way again! About the authors: Ryan Jacobson is a successful Minnesota author and presenter. He prides himself on writing high-interest books for each age level, so he can talk picture books in kindergarten, ghost stories in high school, and other fun stuff in between. He lives in Mora, MN. Wildlife photographer Stan Tekiela has written more than...

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