Last week my son and I visited the town of Leavenworth, WA. This was originally a logging town with a sawmill. They thrived until about the middle of the 20th century when the Great Northern Railway Company pulled out of town. In the 60's the leaders of the town took their last chance to turn the town around.
They took advantage of the surrounding mountains and Alpine atmosphere and modeled the town after a Bavarian village to encourage tourism. They planned festivals throughout the year and remodeled all the buildings to resemble Bavaria.
They did a pretty good job, the buildings looked very similar to some I saw during my visit in Alsace Lorraine a few years ago.
Naturally, as in all tourist towns, there was SHOPPING! I was very good though. We visited a shop that specialized in Nutcrackers. I've been collecting them for a few years now, but I've never seen such an assortment. There was a whole wall of them. I was in heaven, until I saw the prices. They were very expensive, much too rich for me. They must have been either imported or hand carved.
They also had some Hummels which I used to collect, but stopped when I bought my favorite, "Blessed Event".
On the way back, we stopped in a 50's style diner. They had all kinds of old pictures and a TV that was showing "The Cisco Kid". That really brought back some memories.
It was a wonderful day. The scenery along the way was magnificant. There was a lot of snow along the road in some places. Later in the week they had more snow and they did some avalanche control.
I just wish they'd change the name. All I could think of was Ft. Leavenworth in Kansas and a federal prison.