Sunday, September 6, 2020

City of Trolls -- Mount Horeb Wisconsin


When people ask me where some of my favorite travel destinations have been, Mount Horeb is near the top of the list.  A town in Wisconsin with under 10,000 people, yet I have so many memories and photos of there. 

In 2017, my husband and I went to the Church of the Nazarene General Assembly in Indianapolis, as it was a closer way to get to a college reunion for me than going to Tennessee.  Afterwards, my husband and I decided to travel through the midwest a bit, going out to Antique Archeology in Iowa and then heading back.  It's a bucket list item for me to travel to all 50 states, so we did what, as a child I used to call "the longcut" and went through southern Wisconsin so we could travel through another state.

I was getting restless, and wanted to stop and do something, so I started checking my apps.  Apps I generally check when I'm getting restless on a road trip are for thrift stores, Roadside America (I have the upgraded version for the entire USA, and it's been well worth it to me, especially since my state and the next state from me are in different regions), and geocaching. I saw on Roadside America that we were close to Mount Horeb, and it said it was filled with trolls.  Needless to say, this intrigued me and I found a geocache in that town that had good reviews, told my husband to put it in the GPS and we were off.

Also, the geocache I put into the GPS?  It was located at a local business -- outside so it could be accessed anytime.  It's commonplace for "swag" to be exchanged in geocaches, and this geocache was filled with great swag from the insurance company.  So, we have a pizza cutter advertising an insurance agency in Mount Horeb that we used regularly!  When having a fun meal, it's a great way to remember a welcoming town that we would have missed if it hadn't been for the trolls.

Amazingly, this town has almost two dozen trolls.  They are expertly carved, and we went from troll to troll taking photos.  According to the Mount Horeb Chamber of Commerce in the 1970s a store put a troll in their lawn to attract business and truckers started talking about it.  When a bypass was built, the town decided to put up trolls to attract visitors.  I have to say, it worked.  We stopped at a town we otherwise would have missed to visit all the trolls.  We had fun, went to a local bar and ordered Wisconsin cheese curds.  The waitress reminded me of my grandmother, and that was a lot of fun.  She was thrilled to serve a couple their very first cheese curds.  She was quite interested in the fact we were from West Virginia and just decided to stop in. 

Another fun memory is while we were taking photos of the trolls, we found a couple painted rocks.  This was when the trend was just starting and it was the first painted rock I had ever found.  It just seemed to round out the enjoyment of our detour off the Interstate into a friendly town in the midwest before continuing on our journey.

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