August began as it should, sunny and hot – the epitome of a Minnesota summer’s day.  The perfect ending to an August day is a lake and ice cream.  We were lucky enough to have both the lake and a DQ close by in the Cities.  As kids played in the water by the swimming beach, we noticed more and more people coming to the lake as the sunset approached.  A storm was developing to the northwest and the clouds began to move in, but luckily they held off long enough for the sun to give up a last hurrah, light up the sky and clouds, and reflect its brilliant colors in the surface of the lake.  A group cruised by on their pontoon boat as we sat on a bench and enjoyed our ice cream, the cool breeze coming off the lake, and the beauty of the day’s end.

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It’s summer here in the mid-west.  We’ve had temps in the 80’s and 90’s, and humidity that sometimes matched those temperatures.  One of the best ways to cool off on a hot summer’s night is to be on or near the water, whether it’s a pond, a lake, or a river.  So last night we headed over to Hudson, Wisconsin and with our feet in the water, we watched the sun set over the St. Croix River.  It was beautiful and delightful, especially with all the sailboats and recreational boats on the river.  Afterwards, it seemed only appropriate to finish off the evening with some cool ice cream.  We were on the east side of Saint Paul and stopped at the Dari-ette Drive-In.  Here you can order from your car or walk up to the window.  We ordered our ice cream and sat outside at a table to enjoy the evening.  With its neon sign, the flashing ice cream cone, and the lights of the cars going by, I couldn’t help but pull out my camera to photograph one of the last few drive-ins that still exist in the state.  If you’re in Saint Paul or passing through, I’d certainly recommend a stop at the Dari-ette Drive-In.