I recently spent 49 consecutive hours in Bismarck, North Dakota, attending Red Sox Daughter’s tennis tournament. Bismarck is the capital of North Dakota. And they have the building to prove it:
North Dakota State Capitol
I was amazed at the number of people taking pictures of this building. Maybe it’s because it has more than three stories, which makes it something of an oddity in North Dakota. Nonetheless, Bismarck has many other attractions, including a very nice 9-hole frisbee golf course. Or as the kids call it, "frolf." The course has many trees and it’s located on the side of a hill.
Frisbee Golf Course. And the tall building in the background? You guessed it. Capitol building.
Besides being the capital of North Dakota, Bismarck also seems to be the capital of parks, softball fields and walking paths. All are very abundant. And their main tennis court complex, the Tom O’Leary Courts, are very nice and feature five courts located below street level, giving them a built-in stadium feel.
Tom O’Leary Courts
A hidden gem amongst Bismarck’s many chain restaurants is a place called The Little Cottage Cafe. And yes, it is little.
The Little Cottage Cafe (L), Big Boy (R)
The Little Cottage Cafe is known for North Dakota’s very own Fleischkuekle. I was instructed a while back to give it a try. So, unsure of how to pronounce it, I pointed at it on the menu. The waitress said, "you want the Fleischkuekle?" (flesh-key-kluh…at least that’s what I thought she said.) Fleischkuekle is a meat pie with flat bread surrounding it and then deep-fried. True story. It was so simple and so good I was amazed.
I was very skeptical of Fleischkuekle. I am now a believer. Gotta love the Germans. When RSD and I entered The Little Cottage Cafe, we lowered the average age of the customers to about 67. This was an actual comment overheard at the next booth: "My tooth kept falling out so now I’m using Gorilla Glue. It works great." True story.
All in all, Bismarck is a pretty cool city. It’s much bigger than I remember it, and it seems to have a steady rate of growth. And for the purpose of full disclosure, we ate at the Big Boy the next night.