Big-Time Shopping

Recently, I went to see my son Domer in The Land of the North, and we took a little day jaunt to “one of the most visited tourist destinations in the world.”

Can you guess what that was?

With more than 500 stores, 50 restaurants, and four levels to browse, why it could only be the Mall of America®, located just minutes from Minneapolis and St. Paul, MN.

Now Domer wasn’t particularly interested in making a purchase, but I was armed with a list. Why not? There’s no sales tax on clothing or shoes up there, and I figured I’d save a bundle!

Anchored by Macy’s, Sears, and Nordstrom’s, this mall is ginormous. If you can’t find “it” here, it probably isn’t being made.

From accessories and apparel to books and computers, from cosmetics to shoes and toys, the Mall of America® is a paradise for the avid shopper. Why, it would take days to even scratch the surface of what’s inside.

There’s an 18-hole mini-golf course with a North Woods feel, a 1.3-million gallon aquarium, and a place where you can try flight simulators just like military pilots use.

And for the young and young-at-heart, Nickelodeon® has a theme park, featuring SEVEN ACRES of attractions, including 27 rides!

Not so long ago, Domer would have insisted we visit the Lego® Store:


We didn’t go in this time, but we were amazed at the size of these brick creations. The helicopter and the tiger were so lifelike!

And neither Domer nor I are big roller coaster aficionados, but it sounded like lots of somebodies were enjoying this one:


If you get hungry — and who doesn’t when shopping? — there’s everything you could want, from fast food to fine dining. A place called the Rainforest Cafe seemed to be the “in” spot, but being in kind of a hurry, we chose elsewhere.

Sadly, the only thing I took away from our visit was a screaming headache. Domer, on the other hand, at least scored some shoes.

If you’re in the area, check it out!

*I’m not being paid to write this, okay? I just wanted to share some observations of our trip.

26 thoughts on “Big-Time Shopping

  1. I went there years ago with my family and you’re right – it’s amazingly huge. Like a little city – which in Minnesota must be a nice way to shop in those frigid winters.

    • Indeed, Barb! I can’t fathom living in a place where it’s so COLD so many months out of the year. I understand the summers are nice, though, and perhaps being forced to stay indoors would help me finish my novel??!

  2. I’m glad you went, and I’m glad you had a good time (minus the headache) and I’m glad to have seen the photos. Is there any chance on God’s green earth I would set foot in the place? Nope. For one thing, I don’t enjoy shopping. If I need something, I find a place to get it at a reasonable price, and then I buy it. Except — if it’s in a mall, I’ll pass. That’s ok. Since I won’t be there, that means there will be an extra parking spot for someone else. 🙂

    • I got a chuckle over your comments, Linda, and can totally appreciate them! Domer and I are both introverts, too, so we empathize with the misery that comes from being surrounded by hundred of screaming people, all eager to bag bargains. I suspect that’s why I got such a splitting headache — trying to cope as best as I could with the noise, flashing lights, and frustration of getting lost, not to mention the disappointment over not finding anything on my list!

  3. It’s been years and years since I’ve been to the MOA. I remember it fondly. We ate at Rain Forest. Friends went on the roller coaster – I babysat packages. No sales tax was a plus but I don’t remember buying anything. I must have, tho. Fun way to spend the day with your best guy despite the headache.

    • You are SOOO right — the best part of the day was spending time with Domer! Although, honestly, we split up after lunch, going separate ways because we were shopping for different things. Aren’t cell phones wonderful? What did parents do without them??!

  4. OMG, Debbie, I have ALWAYS wanted to go to the Mall of America because not only is it GREAT place to shop, but it’s also like going into Disneyworld with all the attractions and rides.

    What an experience that must have been! GREAT photographs!

    “There’s no sales tax on clothing or shoes up there…”

    It’s the same here in Pennsylvania. And also on food (grocery store food). When I first moved back east from Florida, I had totally forgotten that but was delightfully happy about it 🙂

    Glad you had a great time with Domer!

    Have a super weekend, my friend!

    • Y’all don’t have sales tax on food or clothing, either? How cool is that — no wonder your move back from Florida went swimmingly well!

      I know Minnesota is a LONG way from Pennsylvania, Ron, but you should make plans for a trip west — in the summer months, of course! The Mall of America is truly a sight to behold. I’d love seeing it at Christmastime, with the decorations and such — of course, I think I’d prefer it in smaller doses, say an hour or two here and there, rather than trying to take everything in all at once, the way we did!!

      Hope this is a fabulous week for you!

  5. I’ve never seen Mall of America (except for on the show ‘Mall Cops’, which the kids watched on Netflix over the summer… odd series for them to want to watch!) I’m sorry you left with a headache, but had to chuckle that you, with a list, bought nothing, but your son got shoes 🙂

    • Isn’t that crazy, Janna? I thought I was totally prepared by knowing just what colors, sizes, and styles I was looking for. I really wanted a new winter coat (and figured Minnesota was just the place to find a good one!). Domer, who hadn’t really wanted anything, lucked upon something. Maybe it was for the best, as I’d have hated lugging dozens of heavy packages around a four-level mall — that would’ve made my headache even worse!

  6. Sounds like an awesome place to visit. Glad you and your son had some Mom and son time. That was the best thing I took away from your trip. I love my mother and sons time. Thank God for little boys and grown boys too!

    • Mom and son time was indeed the best of all, Tanya! Even my miserable headache couldn’t erase the pleasure of hanging with Domer for the day. I know you understand just what I mean by that!

  7. I’m sorry you left with a headache. My friend and I went shopping to the outlets last week, and oh yes, we made some wonderful purchases; a great time for both of us just maybe not our wallets, ha!

    • That’s actually the way I prefer to shop, Suzi — successfully! Yes, it’s a bit more expensive, but it’s not nearly as frustrating. Glad you found some things worth buying!

    • I’ve heard of people getting married in a Wal-Mart, and somehow, that seems even odder to me, ha! I hope you had better shopping luck than I did, Monica — it’s such a BIG place, and I was sooo disappointed not to find anything.

  8. My Big Kids live in that neck of the woods, so I am sure I will be shopping there one day. I know people used to fly over on a weekend from London just to shop at the Mall of America. Now that is truly the epitome of a shopaholic.

    • It’s definitely an adventure, Pat. We missed the aquarium, and both of us would have loved seeing that! I suppose we’ll have to plan a trip back one of these days. In the meantime, I think a smaller shopping experience suits me just fine!

  9. I remember when that was built…but I”ve never been. Would consider going once, just to see it…and to ride the roller coaster…but I”m not much of a shopper. Still…no tax? Huh….maybe.

    • The no sales tax on clothing is a big draw, I imagine. Especially if you’re buying “big ticket” items like boots and coats (which, of course, they have PLENTY of in The Land of The North, ha!)

  10. The Mall of America is only about 20 minutes from my house. I was just there this morning, in fact, with my sister to see her husband perform with the Elvis tribute band that he’s a member of. And we were both noting how we probably visit the mall maybe once a year. It’s just too overwhelming.

    Glad you had a chance to have the MOA experience!

    • I thought that might be your stomping grounds, Terri. You’re so right — it IS overwhelming. So much to see and do! I think perhaps I should have steeled myself NOT to want anything; then, I wouldn’t have been so disappointed when I failed to make a purchase!

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