CITY MUSEUM, St. Louis
Sculptor and junk hound Bob Cassilly, who died in 2011, gets credit for transforming the musty manufacturing plant into an eccentric palace of fun for all ages. In other words. most of this 600,000-square-foot building into one really cool place. Looking at the accompanying photo, I'm going there next Route 66 trip through town.
One slide is made of rollers that used to transport shoes through the building. there is also a 7-foot-tall pair of underwear and a 21,500-pound pencil, both called the world's largest.
THE VILLAGE AT GRAND TRAVERSE COMMONS, Traverse City, Michigan
A cluster of brick buildings that at one time was the North Michigan Asylum has been reborn as a city hub for events, shopping and dining. The largest is Building No. 50 which opened in 1885 and housed up to 3,500 mental patients, but today is the anchor of the Commons as the Nercato, a dozen independent boutiques and galleries.
It was saved from demolition and its 63 acres are multi-purpose now. There is an adjacent 400-some acres of city parkland.
You'd Have to Be Crazy to Go To This Place. --RoadDog