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Mighty Mississippi: Bridging America

Program Number: 20726RJ
Start and End Dates:
7/4/2013 - 7/13/2013; 9/5/2015 - 9/13/2015;
Duration: 9 nights
Location: Minnesota/Wisconsin/Iowa/Missouri
Price starting at: $3,897.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Adventure Afloat Study Cruise; River Boats Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 25; 9 Breakfasts, 8 Lunches, 8 Dinners    

Explore the Upper Mississippi aboard the magnificent American Queen, an authentic paddlewheel steamboat that recalls the romance and adventure of the past. From the Gateway Arch to the Wisconsin Amish Country, fill your heart with the spirit of expansion and feed your mind with the historic events and fascinating figures that define this iconic corner of America.




Activity Particulars

Walking up to one mile per day.



Itinerary At-a-Glance

St. Louis, Mo., 1 night; aboard American Queen, 7 nights.



Coordinated by Road Scholar.



Days 1-2: Arrival St. Louis, Mo. / embark American Queen:

Explore St. Louis which includes a visit to the historic Forest Park neighborhood, site of the 1904 World's Fair and the Herman T. Pott National Inland Waterways Library at the University of Missouri.



Days 3-4: On River / Hannibal:

Absorb the natural beauty around you as you steamboat up the Mississippi River. At the Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum learn how the life of Samuel Clemens inspired the classics he penned as Mark Twain.



Days 5-6: On River / Dubuque, Iowa:

Visit the Mississippi River Museum (a satellite of the Smithsonian) The National Rivers Hall of Fame captures the drama of river people from all across America. Explore our nation's rivers in the keelboat audio exhibit, enjoy the steamboat invention theater, then steer barges in a modern-day towboat pilothouse simulator. Hall of Fame inductees are the pioneers, the explorers and the artists who are no longer living.



Day 7: La Crosse, Wis.:

A visit to the University of Wisconsin Library, housing the largest collection of steamboat photographs in the world.



Day 8-9: Red Wing, Minn. / disembark St. Paul / departure:

In Wabasha, Minn., the oldest city on the Upper Mississippi River, visit the National Eagle Center to observe bald eagles and a golden eagle.









American Queen

The largest steamboat ever built, the American Queen is a recreation of a classic Mississippi riverboat featuring a steam-powered paddlewheel, lacy filigree and, inside, glistening woodwork and antiques. Public areas include the Mark Twain Gallery library, the Grand Saloon and a lounge. Wine and beer are complimentary with dinner.


Meals and Lodgings
   Drury Inn & Suites Convention Center
  St. Louis, Missouri 1 night
   American Queen
  On the Mississippi River aboard the American Queen
On the Ohio River aboard the American Queen
8 nights
 Drury Inn & Suites Convention Center
Type: Hotel
  Contact info: 711 North Broadway
St. Louis, MO 63102 USA
phone: 314-231-8100
web: https://wwws.druryhotels.com/PropertyHotelServices.aspx?property=0058
  Room amenities: •Hair Dryers in All Rooms •Indoor Pool & Whirlpool (9 am - 10 pm) •Iron & Ironing Board in All Rooms •Same Day Dry Cleaning Available •Two-line Phones & Data Ports •Free Wireless Internet •Free 60 Minutes of Long Distance •Free Soda/Popcorn (daily 3-10 pm) •Free Local Phone Calls •All Rooms with Microwaves & Refrigerators •Flat Panel LCD TVs in every room
  Facility amenities: •Free Covered Parking* •Free In-room Coffee Service •24 Hour Business Center •Fitness Center •Fax Services •Guest Laundry •Guest Voice Mail
  Smoking allowed: No
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: 160 Pre-nights available at group rate.
  Check in time: 3:00 PM

 American Queen
Type: Riverboat
  Description: •The only authentic overnight paddlewheel steamboat in America. •The acclaimed cuisine of famed American chef Regina Charboneau. •The only steamboat with multiple, specialty dining options, all at no additional charge. •Complimentary bottled water and soft drinks throughout your voyage. •Complimentary wines and beers at dinner. •All staterooms feature gourmet coffee brewers and Starbucks coffee. •Gracious, friendly service from a professionally trained all-American staff. •The warm and inviting ambiance of an antebellum mansion. •Public rooms and accommodations are decorated with Victorian charm and carefully selected antiques. •Elegant-casual attire throughout your voyage — no formal wear required. •Daily lectures by the Riverlorian, our onboard river historian. •Professional showboat-style entertainment nightly. •Nightly dancing to swing and big band music. •Enthralling calliope concerts and a chance for guests to play!
  Ship Information: Length: 418 feet long Capacity: 436 passengers
  Contact info: One Commerce Square
40 South Main Street, 21st Floor
Memphis, TN 38103 USA
phone: 190-165-4260 x0
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
St. Louis, Missouri. 5:30PM at the hotel. You will be staying at Drury Inn & Suites Convention Center that night.
  End of Program:
St. Paul, Minnesota. The ship docks at 8:00AM. You will be staying at American Queen the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. "The Guest Information Form" towards the back of your packet must be completed online at https://www.americanqueensteamboatcompany.com/booked-guest-info/ or it must be filled out and faxed to the cruise line at 901.654.2639. Approximately one month prior to the program, cruise documents will be mailed to participants.
  Parking availability:
A group transfer will be included for those who have booked their air through Road Scholar. Details will be included in your 2nd mailing which you will receive approximately 5 weeks prior to your program start date.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  St. Louis, Missouri
  Nearest airport:  Lambert St. Louis International Airport
  From End of Program
  Location:  On the Ohio River aboard the American Queen
Travel Details
 

Lambert St. Louis Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$38 for one or two people
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

24 minutes 

 

Distance:

 

17 miles

 

Minneapolis St. Paul Airport

 

To Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Taxi

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Approximately $29-36 per taxi
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

Approximately 20 minutes from the St. Paul pier 

 

Distance:

 

16 miles

 

Minneapolis St. Paul Airport

 

To Airport

 
 

Service:

 

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

$20
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

Approximately 20 minutes from the St. Paul pier 

 

Distance:

 

16 miles

   

Transportation by coach is available by the cruise line. Reservations can be made while on board the ship.

 

Minneapolis St. Paul Airport

 

To Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

N/A
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

Approximately 20 minutes from the St. Paul pier 

 

Distance:

 

16 miles

   

Shuttle services available. Please call Super Shuttle at 800.258.3826 to make reservations.

 
Driving Directions
  Traveling East On I-64 Traveling East on I-64/Hwy 40: Take Broadway Exit #40B Turn Left at First Stop Sign Turn Left onto 4th Street Turn Left on Convention Plaza Dr Turn Left on Broadway
  Traveling East On I-70: Take The Convention Center Exit #249C Follow Broadway One Block The Hotel Will Be On The Right.
  Traveling West On I-64/Hwy 40 Take Downtown Exit (Memorial Dr) Turn Left On Washington St Turn Right On 4th St Turn Left On Convention Plaza Dr Turn Left On Broadway
Elevation Note: Flat terrain.

The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Arrival, orientation, welcome dinner.
(Thursday, July 4)
   
 Afternoon: Arrivals in St. Louis. Look for Charlene in the lobby at the Hospitality desk between 12 and 5 p.m. Welcome Reception at 5:30 pm in the hotel lobby.
 Dinner: Welcome dinner and orientation at the hotel.
 Evening: At 9 pm, with the mighty Mississippi River as a backdrop, enjoy St. Louis’ spectacular 4th of July Fireworks gala – recognized as one of the most extravagant pyrotechnic celebrations in America – on the historic St. Louis riverfront.
   
Accommodations: Drury Inn & Suites Convention Center
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: St. Louis, Missouri
(Friday, July 5)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the hotel.
 Morning: After breakfast we will enjoy a field trip of St Louis that will focus on the city's unique relationship with the Mississippi River. Guest speaker Dennis Brown (who was born and raised in St Louis) will lead the field trip. Special emphasis will be given to James Eads, designer of the St Louis Bridge (now known to the world as Eads Bridge), which spans the mighty Mississippi. Eads Bridge is now universally recognized as one of the great design structures in the world.
 Lunch: A 4th of July-styled picnic lunch in beautiful Forest Park (site of the 1904 World’s Fair, which is featured in the classic movie Meet Me in St. Louis) will be included on the field trip.
 Afternoon: Transfer to the American Queen for boarding. As our steamboat sits on the levee within sight of the majestic Gateway Arch, we will provide a special screening, exclusive to Road Scholars, of Monument to the Dream, the amazing 30-minute documentary about the construction of the Arch.
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen.
 Evening: The American Queen is scheduled to depart St. Louis at 9 p.m. The St. Louis skyline is at its most striking when seen from the vantage of the river itself. This will also give us a rare opportunity to view these two iconic structures – Eads Bridge and the Gateway Arch – from the deck of a moving steamboat.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Chester, IL
(Saturday, July 6)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard the American Queen.
 Morning: Today is a “Steamboating Day”. with plenty of time to enjoy the pastoral scenery as well as partake in any of the scheduled onboard activities offered by the cruise line. Spend some free time on the ship's Front Porch of America, cozy up with a book in the Mark Twain Gallery, or try your hand at some card's in Ladies' Parlor or Gentleman's Card Room.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: With the magnificent Gateway Arch still fresh in our memories, this afternoon we will schedule a private screening of The Gateway Arch: A Reflection of America, a 60-minute documentary narrated by Kevin Kline. The film will be introduced by Dennis Brown.
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Cape Girardeau, MO
(Sunday, July 7)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard the American Queen.
 Morning: This morning we arrive in Mark Twain’s boyhood hometown, Hannibal, MO to board the Twainland Express for a journey enlivened by the spirit of Samuel Clemens, who authored American classics under the pen name of Mark Twain. Begin your journey into the town that inspired the author’s imagination at the Mark Twain Boyhood House & Museum. See the Justice of Peace, the courtroom setting used for trial in Tom Sawyer’s story. Visit the Becky Thatcher House, home of Tom Sawyer’s first sweetheart. Delight your palate. Then, take a journey to a time where the golden age of railroading and toy trains were part of most everyone’s life at the Big River Train Town Museum. Last but not least, enjoy visiting local Trinity Church or perhaps taste some wine at the Mark Twain Winery.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: Now that you have trod on the same Hannibal cobblestone streets that Samuel Clemens walked upon a century ago, we will “meet” Mark Twain in the personage of a Twain impersonator. Later on this afternoon, prior to dinner, we will gather for an exclsuive Road Scholar cocktail party.
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Paducah, KY
(Monday, July 8)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard the American Queen.
 Morning: The Great Waters of the Mississippi originate in Lake Itasca and roll relentlessly to the Gulf of Mexico. This force of nature is your constant companion during a magical day of uninterrupted cruising. Spend some free time on the ship's Front Porch of America, cozy up with a book in the Mark Twain Gallery, or try your hand at some card's in Ladies' Parlor or Gentleman's Card Room.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: This afternoon Dennis Brown will prepare us for tomorrow’s visit to Dubuque, Iowa. He will discuss Dubuque native Richard Bissell who (though not as famous as Mark Twain) is, after Clemens, America’s most noted river author. A licensed river pilot, Bissell also wrote the novel 7-1/2 Cents, which was adapted into the colorful Broadway musical, The Pajama Game.
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Henderson, KY
(Tuesday, July 9)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard the American Queen.
 Morning: Dennis Brown will lead us on an exclusive field trip to “Richard Bissell’s Dubuque.” This is our opportunity to have some fun discovering this very amusing author. The field trip will include a visit to the Mississippi River Museum and Aquarium (which is located near where Bissell lived on his own shanty boat). We’ll also ride the Fenelon Place Elevator, which is billed as the shortest and steepest railroad in the world. You’ll even see where the original Bissell family pajama factory (the inspiration for The Pajama Game) once stood.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: Free time to explore Dubuque on your own. You might want to join the American Queen's Hop-On, Hop-Off coach and explore the Grand Opera House.
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: Steamboating on the Ohio River
(Wednesday, July 10)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard the American Queen.
 Morning: Enjoy a relaxed morning onboard before we dock in La Crosse, WI, a gem of Victorian and Art Deco architecture.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: Mississippi Explorer Cruise – a 90 minute ecology cruise in the backwaters of the National Wildlife and Fish Refuge. Unreachable by other passenger vessels, we venture into seldom seen side-channels such as: Broken Arrow, Swift Creek, Mormon, and Running Sloughs. We'll explore the outskirts of Goose Island and Target Lake, stop at beaver lodges, lotus fields, and even active bald eagle nests. Now's the time to get outside and see the wide variety of plants and animals that live in the "Upper Miss" wildlife refuge
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 8: Louisville, KY
(Thursday, July 11)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard the American Queen.
 Morning: Winona is one of the most beautiful places in the country, nestled between the covered limestone river bluffs that rise 500 feet and the stunning mighty Mississippi River. The historic architecture and cultural opportunities give Winona a soul that is living, breathing and growing. Still, Winona and its wealth of culture, arts, history, recreation and festivals, is relatively undiscovered.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: Our field trip today will be to visit the Shakespeare Theater in Winona where we will have an exclusive behind the scenes visit.
 Dinner: Onboard the American Queen.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Madison, KY
(Friday, July 12)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard.
 Morning: Red Wing is home to a variety of shops, including arts, antiques, pottery and one-of-a kind boutiques. Red Wing ranks as one of Minnesota's leading manufacturing cities. Historically it is known as home to products including its famous shoes, pottery and linseed oil. Start your exploration of Red Wing at the Visitor Center and Art for some vital information about the city. Discover Minnesota’s favorite destination for things such as antiques and pottery at the Pottery Place District. Then visit the Stoney Ends Harps, who have made handcrafted folk lever harps for 25 years. At the Historic West End, you will find the Native American, Military and Sheldon Performing Arts Theatre. Don’t miss the spectacular view of bluffs of Minnesota and Wisconsin that await you at Memorial Park.
 Lunch: Onboard the American Queen.
 Afternoon: This afternoon, we travel to Wabasha, Minnesota, the oldest city on the Upper Mississippi River. At the home of the National Eagle Center, eagles are in abundance during the winter months, and they nest here year-round. The Center in downtown Wabasha houses bald eagles and a golden eagle and is open for programs and special groups. Visitors from all over the world have been to Wabasha to have a "nose to beak" experience with America's national symbol of freedom - the American bald eagle.
 Evening: Enjoy an evening show onboard the American Queen.
   
Accommodations: American Queen
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 10: Cincinnati, Ohio
(Saturday, July 13)
   
 Breakfast: Onboard
 Morning: Disembark in St. Paul, Minnesota. Independent departures.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


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