I live in the nickel capital of the world and for many years the city had a reputation of being a hard drinking mining town and that statement was pretty accurate. When I use to visit the city as a kid I remember lots and lots of black rock basically everywhere you looked heck astronauts use to come here to experience what it would be like on the moon. Through a number of different projects set out by various mining companies along with the local government the look of this town is nothing like what it use to be.
My little boy is off school this week thanks to March break so my first plan was to go to the local IMAX theater as they have a new 3D movie that I thought we would both enjoy but I should have planned ahead as it was completely sold out. I asked my son what he would like to do and he mentioned Dynamic Earth. So we headed to the big nickel where this tourist hot spot is located and it was a fun afternoon. Dynamic Earth has a tour where you go below the surface and basically go through the different stages of mining from the 1900"s where it was pure brute muscle to where it is now all run by computers and joysticks.
The problem with being a city that is featured around one massive industry ie. mining is that when the industry gets hit the entire city will feel it. The mining companies in this city went from hiring people like crazy a few years ago to laying people off in large numbers where it is at now. Thankfully the Nickel Center is not all about mining like it was twenty years ago but the gap left by the mining industry is pretty substantial.
Where I live the population is around 175,000 or so but really has that small town feel and to give you an example a large pothole on a main street made front page news today complete with photo.
Anyway there is a bit about where I call home. Take care