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The Secrets of the Mall of America

Dear Diary,
One of the Twin Cities' infamous tourist attractions is a mall. Perhaps you've heard of it?

And it was only a matter of time before a post about it was published here.

(I consistently park by the JW Marriott and enter through the Mall's recent expansion.)

Built in 1992 at a cost of $650 million, the Mall of America spans (at least) 4.87 million square feet and houses an aquarium, an amusement park, a movie theater and 520 stores. It was the media home of Super Bowl 52, and locals know the best time to vist is in the middle of the week, in the middle of the day, in order to avoid the crowds.

(The kids cannot help but ride a few rides each time we visit.)

Did you know the Mall sits on the site of the old Twins and Vikings stadium?

Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington was home, and there are clues to this fact scattered throughout the amusement park. The original home plate is immortalized with a plaque, and an old stadium chair hangs over the log ride.

It pays tribute to Harmon Killebrew's 522-foot home run, the stadium's record, in 1967.

(The old tribute now has a banner that explains why in the world there's a chair on the wall.)

Fun Facts:
-The fish eat 100-pounds of food daily in the 1.2-million gallon Sea Life Aquarium
-MOA generates approximately $2 billion in annual revenue for the state
-11,000 people are employed year-round, and that number increases to 13,000 during peak seasons
-There are approximately 12,550 parking spots ...
-... serving the 40 million annual visitors
-You can get married at the Chapel of Love, and more than 7,000 people were married there since the Mall's opening
-There used to be a high school there
-And the mall has its own counter-terrorism unit




Scenes from several movies were shot on site here: D2: The Mighty Ducks (1994), Jingle All The Way (1996), You're Invited to Mary-Kate & Ashley's Mall Party (1997), Mall Masters (2001), Mall Cops: Mall of America (2010) and The End of the Tour (2015).

In a time when everything is searchable on Amazon, or through online and in-home try-on services, plus delivery, it's still nice to have a massive one-stop shop that encompasses every activity one typically does in a weekend.

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