Blue Mounds State Park to host Teddy Roosevelt impersonator Saturday
LUVERNE -- Nearly a decade ago, someone snapped a photo of Adam Lindquist that made him realize he shared a striking resemblance to America's 26th President, Teddy Roosevelt.
LUVERNE -- Nearly a decade ago, someone snapped a photo of Adam Lindquist that made him realize he shared a striking resemblance to America’s 26th President, Teddy Roosevelt.
Through a little research, he learned he was the same height and weight, had the same color eyes and the same hair color. The similarities gave Lindquist an idea, and ultimately a career path.
Today, he travels the country, visiting schools, theaters, conventions and boardrooms impersonating Teddy and sharing stories about Roosevelt’s life that are entertaining, educational and engaging.
On Saturday, Lindquist will visit Blue Mounds State Park north of Luverne, where he will set up his campsite and welcome visitors from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. At 7 p.m., he will present “Teddy Live” at the state park’s amphitheater.
“He sets up a camp like Teddy Roosevelt would have had in the Badlands of North Dakota,” said Luverne Area Chamber Director Jane Lanphere of the late morning and afternoon event.
Dressed in period attire, Lindquist will demonstrate what it was like to camp in the 1800s. Roosevelt is referred to as America’s conservation president. He also founded the national park system, which celebrates its 100th birthday this year.
During the 7 p.m. “Teddy Live” show, Lindquist will talk about the life of Teddy Roosevelt, from his childhood to losing his first wife in childbirth and his decision to move out west.
“He used nature to get rid of some of the pain of losing his wife,” Lanphere said.
Lindquist has been travelling with the National Park Service to help tell the story of Roosevelt, and Lanphere said she learned of his work a couple of years ago when Lindquist’s aunt and uncle visited the Brandenburg Gallery in Luverne.
“When this opportunity came up, I wrote a grant to SMAC (Southwest Minnesota Arts Council) to receive some funds to get him down here,” Lanphere added. “He’s just the most delightful man.”
People are encouraged to bring their own lawn chairs, as there is limited seating available.
In conjunction with the 7 p.m. performance, the Luverne Area Chamber has planned a birthday party in the Blue Mounds State Park amphitheater. Blue Mounds State Park Manager Chris Ingebretsen will also present a program about the park’s bison following the Roosevelt performance.
Between Saturday’s Roosevelt events in the state park, Ron and Jane Cote will perform music of the real west, sharing songs of cowboys and prairie travelers in a show that begins at 4 p.m. at the Blue Mounds State Park Interpretive Center.
Saturday’s events are part of a summer-long celebration of the state park system at Blue Mounds.
“It should be a fun weekend -- a real celebration of the national parks. It’s certainly a blessing to have Blue Mounds State Park here,” Lanphere said.
Following are upcoming events at the state park:
July 2: Fred Harris and Jeff LeClaire of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources lead an 11 a.m. hike at Blue Mounds State Park, talking about unusual snakes and plants of Blue Mounds and the quartzite outcrops.
July 16 and Aug. 5: Bud Johnston of the Keepers of the Sacred Tradition of Pipemakers shares his insight and research as he speaks on the Blue Mounds “stone fence” at 7 p.m. Hear how Native Americans used this site as a trading ground centuries ago.
July 23-24 and Aug. 20-21: Vertical Endeavors offers beginner classes on rock climbing. There is a fee for a two-hour adventure, and gear is included. Classes are from 9 to 10:30 a.m., 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., 1:30 to 3 p.m. and 3:30 to 5 p.m. each day. Reservations are required at mndnr.gov/reservations.
Sept. 3: Blue Mounds State Park Manager Chris Ingebretsen shares the story of the great American bison that live at Blue Mounds State Park. Learn about how these animals provided more than food, clothing and shelter to Native Americans -- connecting heart, mind, body and soul. 8:30 p.m. in the Blue Mounds State Park Amphitheater.