The experience offers a virtual trip through the Minneapolis community with former WCCOer Mike Binkley.
A new QR code tour has been deployed in the historic North Loop neighborhood of Minneapolis. The experience provides historical information along a virtual walk with local news station WCCO retiree.
Retired anchor Mike Binkley took part to discover the rich history of this neighborhood.
“In all my years of Finding Minnesota for WCCO now I’m just finding the North Loop and there are so many great stories right here in this neighborhood,” said Binkley. “This one has a real good story to it up here.”
Binkley placed the spotlight of a building with an easily recognizable brand that has been on the shelves of grocery stores for several decades. “People walk by this building and see Creamette up there as in pasta? Yeah, this is where they literally made pasta. It was invented in the North Loop,” he said.
Binkley’s goal as a part of this project is to share these local stories and to make them easily accessible through a new QR code tour.
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The QR code tour is easy for visitors and locals to use to discover the history of the area.
“A lot of people know that Mars Incorporated is this Chicago company but Frank Mars was a Minnesota native and he had this fledgling candy company — the Maro bar, which he started in this building,” said Binkley.
So far, there are eleven plaques featuring information and the quick response codes. These are on display for visitors and locals to see. The goal is to have a total of 25 of the plaques on display by the spring. These are the result of the work of the North Loop Neighborhood Association. Their goal was to provide this part of the city with a voice as it has been regularly overlooked for many years when compared to the milling district in the same city.
“This area played a huge part in the development of Minneapolis, the warehousing, manufacturing. By 1915, it was actually earning more money than the milling district was,” said Binkley. The QR code tour provides a walking guide throughout the neighborhood that is free to everyone.