Everyone has heard of the John Hughes movie, “Planes, Trains and Automobiles,” where Steve Martin desperately tries to get home for Thanksgiving by any means necessary, accompanied by a very obnoxious John Candy. What no one really thinks about is that by the time that film was released in 1987, trains had largely become an outdated mode of travel.
Just a century earlier, though, railroads helped establish the US as a super power and build the tourism industry. Today, traveling by train in America harkens back to a simpler time that doesn’t quite fit our current need for speed, efficiency, or practicality.
What’s lost on most of the general public, however, is that the industry has continued to improve by leaps and bounds. Light rails have made traveling between cities exponentially more convenient, and rail technology continues to get faster and more affordable.
Is it so hard to imagine a future in which rail travel reins supreme once again? For answers, let’s take a look into the history books to see how we got here.
Miniature cities. Secret libraries. Bone churches. These are things we expect to read about in a comic book or watch in a horror movie. However, Atlas Obscura shows us that these things exist in a world just outside our window.
A definitive guide to the world’s most wondrous and curious places, Atlas Obscura is a collaborative project where people share tales of fascinating people, places, things, and ideas from around the world. We figured that Halloween was the perfect time to spotlight some of the creepiest and most curious places that Atlas Obscura has shared with us over the years.
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Photo by Markburger83 / Wikipedia
Though it began in Munich, Germany, Oktoberfest has been embraced by cultures all over the world, especially in the United States. The sixteen day festival brings people together to celebrate great food, great culture, and, of course, great beer.
When German immigrants first began coming to our country, they brought with them their customs, traditions, and their unrivaled love of rich brews. German-style breweries began to pop up in places such as St. Louis, Milwaukee, and around the country where the immigrants staked their claim.
While the brewing industry has largely come to be controlled by big business, many small, regional, and growing microbreweries have gained extreme popularity across the country in recent years, inspired by those early immigrants.
In honor of Oktoberfest, here are our picks for America’s best craft breweries. Pick up a six-pack at your local liquor store, or better yet, enjoy these fine microbrews in person with an Oktoberfest road trip.
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