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BEST PLACE FOR A PICNIC Minneapolis 1999 -

We're talking picnic here--no wimpy, lunch-hour sandwich affair, no romantic twosome with goat cheese on pumpernickel. We're talking extended family/clique/cluster; blankets, coolers, and ants. Meat, or at least some hefty eggplants, on the grill. Five salads, at least one of which must contain potatoes; three desserts, at least one of which must be a bar cookie. Some screaming, ideally provided by kids, though adults may pitch in. Festivities should get under way before noon and continue at least till dark. Why Como? People can split when they're sick of the food or the company, engage in any of a range of diversions, and return ready for more. For kids ages 4 to 14 there's the zoo; for real and wannabe athletes, the pool; for the teenage Romeo and Juliet, canoe rides around the lake; for Aunt Maggie and her partner, the golf course; and for your brother's crystal-studded girlfriend, the Como Ordway Memorial Japanese Garden. And if it rains? Then you just might have to huddle under the pavilions and talk about issues.

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