Over the past several months, I've been delighted to hear from hundreds of readers who have confessed to falling in love with the town of Owatonna, Minnesota, as depicted in my inspirational romance novel, Her Minnesota Man. While readers familiar with southern Minnesota will understand that I fictionalized a few of the places mentioned in the book, they will also note that I included quite a few real-life details. Those of you who are curious about the real Owatonna might enjoy this Owatonna People's Press video of the 2012 Hometown Holiday Lighted Parade.
Before you click, let me offer a brief orientation: It's nighttime in Owatonna, and the camera operator is standing in the middle of downtown, with tiny Central Park at his or her back. We're looking north, up Cedar Avenue, and on the right of your screen you'll see one of the magnificent stained glass windows of The National Farmer's Bank Building (which I mentioned at the beginning of Chapter Four in the book).
Don't expect glitz and glamor from the Lighted Parade; the event is as warm and unpretentious as Owatonnans, themselves. So go make yourself a nice hot beverage and then sit back and enjoy seven unhurried minutes of a simple parade on a chilly winter's night in one of the nicest small towns in America.
(Kudos to Owatonna's fire department for the bang-up light job on their ladder truck!)