The Good Traveler May Miss the Best Part of the US

Last Updated on December 4, 2016 by Jody Halsted

I’m a pretty avid travel blog reader.  I love reading where people go, how they go and why.  It fuels my wanderlust when I’m at home.  So when I read last week that The Good Traveler, Aric S. Queen, would be crossing the United States on a “Classic American Roadtrip” I was keen to follow along. 

The adventure begins this Monday, May 7th. Follow Aric’s journey on Intelligent Travel, Twitter @GoodTravelerNG and Instagram (@GoodTraveler) to get inspired, to be entertained, and to give him advice about what he should see and who he should meet as he blogs his way across America.


Leander Reeve House, Hampton, Iowa
The Old Stone House

Being a proud, and rather outspoken, Midwesterner, I tweeted to Aric that he should definitely make Hampton, Iowa a stop on his route so he could meet Deb Brown (@debworks38383838).  Deb is a Franklin County native who moved away, only to return years later to help care for her ill father.  When she returned Deb found a passion she didn’t realize was in her- a passion to share Franklin County and the town of Hampton, with the anyone who would listen.  Deb is a driving force behind tourism in Franklin County, organizing blogger trips, serving on the tourism board and promoting many of the local events.  I think it is safe to say that without the help of Deb, Hampton, Iowa would be just another small- and growing smaller- town in Iowa.

Now, Aric and I had a nice conversation about that, but then he sent this tweet:

So, I’m making it my summer mission to get National Geographic’s popular blogger into the Midwest.  Because if he skips over us he’ll miss some great people like:

Ken Burns who returned to Bonaparte, Iowa after years on the West Coast.  He and his wife own a lovely art gallery and tea shop.  They also run the Villages Folk School where instructors and students come together to keep many of our “lost arts”, like handpiecing, crocheting, rug weaving and chair caning, alive.


Original Lyrics to "Home on the Range"
"My Western Home" became "Home on the Range", the state song of Kansas

El Dean Holtus, whose aunt and uncle, Mr. & Mrs. Pete Rust, saved the cabin where ‘Home on the Range’ was written in Smith County, Kansas.  El Dean works tirelessly as one of the trustees of the Ellen Rust Living Trust, raising funds to maintain the cabin and restore it.

Marci Penner, who loves Kansas as much as I love Iowa.  The author behind the Kansas Sampler Foundation and the 8 Wonders of Kansas, Marci has met more interesting people than I will ever be fortunate enough to know.  The stories she can tell, and the people she could lead Aric to, are immeasurable.

I could go on…  and on…  We all know incredible people and communities in the Midwest.  So I am calling on you- readers, travelers, Midwesterners, to share with Aric what makes the Midwest so great- and why he shouldn’t miss it.

Call to action:

  • Send a tweet to @GoodTravelerNG. Tell him what he’s missing.  Use the #TravelMidwest.
  • Leave a comment here.  Share your story of inspiring people and passionate communities.
  • If you have a blog, share your story there and link it back here using the linky below.
  • Invite your friends to join us in sharing how amazing the Midwest- and her people- truly are.  It’s time for us to get over our “aw shucks, t’ain’t nuthin” modesty and really show a=our awesome.
  • And who knows- if Aric passes us by, maybe I’ll pay a visit and share your story.


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