If you want to relax and be pampered, spend a night in historic Stillwater: Book a table at a four-star restaurant, stroll along the riverfront promenade at sunset, take a moonlit gondola cruise, and count sheep at any of the grand bed-and-breakfasts.
With Amish furniture, antique radios, and everything in between, Stillwater is also one of the best shopping locales in Minnesota, and many people—bibliomaniacs and antiques fanatics in particular—come here just for a day of retail recreation.
If anything interesting is on stage, it’s probably at the Washington County Historic Courthouse (101 Pine St. W., 651/275-7075). The popular Valley Chamber Chorale (651/430-0124, www.valleychamberchorale.org) performs there several times a year.
The city’s heritage is celebrated during Lumberjack Days (www.lumberjackdays.com) with an 1860s-style baseball game, ice cream social, grand parade, and, of course, lumberjack competitions. The festivities take place over four days in late July. Another popular gathering is the Fall Fine Art and Jazz Festival the first weekend in October.
Getting to Stillwater
For those arriving by boat, there is public mooring at the Stillwater Docks (651/430-1234) and a trio of full-service marinas: Wolf Marine (514 Alder St. E., 651/439-2341, www.wolfmarine.net), Sunnyside Marina (6413 St. Croix Trail N., 651/439-2118, www.sunnysidemarina.com), and Stillwater Yacht Club (575 Main St. N., 651/439-9000, www.stillwateryachtclub.com).
© Tim Bewer from Moon Minnesota, 3rd Edition