In the spring of 1984 the State of Minnesota, with all the hoopla appropriate to such perilous undertakings, launched a brand new “Explore Minnesota” promotion, a media package of glossy magazine ads, films, television commercials and zippy jingles designed to send the Winnebagos and the Air-Streams and the family Fords of America coursing northward, in a mass migration to the Land of 10,000 Lakes. Those lakes were, of course, the major selling point of the campaign, and no aging starlet has ever been photographed more becomingly, under the kind, roseate glow of perpetual sunsets, with graceful loons (the State Bird) woo-hooing plaintively in the middle distance. Or, alternatively, the waters were alive with big, succulent walleye (the State Fish), seemingly bent upon leaping directly into the creels of out-of state anglers. Between these variant versions of aqueous bliss in Hiawathaland were sandwiched quick glimpses of a stage or a museum—tantalizing allusions, it would seem, to the high-cultural cachet of metropolitan Minneapolis and St. Paul. The marketability of Minnesota, then, hinged on its peculiar ability to mediate between two polar opposites: culture and refinement, on the one hand, and, on the other, the utter absence thereof—an unspoiled, untramelled wilderness, the last frontier.