Day 5: SPAM

350 miles
16 mpg
$16.75 ($12+tax & transaction fee): Wagner Park Campground Barnesville, MN

Today is dedicated to Hormel. And Spam.

I camped near Austin, Minnesota last night so I could explore, and be the first in line when the SPAM Museum opened at 11am. Austin is Hormel HQ, and the town revolves, quite literally around the factory, centrally located near the highway (you can see the logos from I-90).

When I pulled onto Main Street at 10:30, there was a long line of empty free 2-hour parking spots. Apollo 23′ and I took up two, right in front.

It’s on a very quaint street, in a state-of-the-art building, with abundant, friendly Spambassadors all delighted to tell you all about Spam.

I took a few Theta 360 shots.

The first exhibit.

This exhibit talks about the pivotal moment when the baton was passed on to Jay Hormel by his father. He later brought SPAM into this world.

Electric cars are great and all, but wouldn’t you rather have one that ran off of bacon?

How about a SPAM Ballet?
(a short video showing cans of spam, set to ballet music)

You can pretend to make SPAM.

They’re very proud of the international reach of SPAM.

I saw a video in the Japan section that I cannot unsee. I want you to not be able to unsee it as well.

You’re welcome.

(Also in 360)

If you wear a SPAM shirt, they’ll give you a free can of the Spam of your choice. Because there are at least 17.

You can buy them all in the gift shop.

I left Austin, and drove to a point just short of Fargo, ND (but still in MN). A green, open county park just off the highway. $12/night for a non-electric site.

Moments after I arrived, after seeing virtually no other Airstreams on this trip so far, I was joined by a couple with a new 2018 Classic, heading for the Canadian Rockies.

In honor of my day of Spam, I made a SPAM ‘n cheese sandwich, slicing the SPAM extra thin, thanks to a clever tool they sell at the gift shop.

Tomorrow, I pick up my key blanks from a UPS Store in Fargo (I had them sent ahead), and camp somewhere nearby until my drone arrives at the same store. I’m hoping by Tuesday…

In the meantime, I’ll be checking the Roadside America app for things to do.

Then on to Montana, and up into Canada. Sweet dreams.

6 thoughts on “Day 5: SPAM

  1. Thank you so much for sharing your wonderful experiences in Austin. Although I spent the first eight years of my life there, and certainly am familiar with Hormel, I’ve never made a pilgrimage to the SPAM Museum.

  2. You aren’t going to believe this, but one of my best buddies from college was visiting the Spam museum yesterday, too! They are headed to Mt. Rushmore. Today, they are at the Corn Palace in SD. My friends all have similar, GOOD taste!

    1. Spamtastic! I am honored by your presence.

      Benecol was a result of doctor’s cholesterol-reducing suggestion a few year’s back, and now I’ve acquired a taste for it. As a child of the 70s, I grew up on margarine and Velveeta, so it’s not much of a stretch.

      I see it as the SPAM of butter-substitutes; long shelf-life and a mysterious blend of ingredients.

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