Prince died at Paisley Park, his Chanhassen complex, on April 21. By April 24, Explore Minnesota tweeted a do-it-yourself tour of his haunts. The lineup — which you can still find at exploreminnesota.com — includes First Avenue nightclub, a house featured in the film “Purple Rain” and the Electric Fetus record store. The quick-turn list was smart because many people — locals and visitors alike — were looking for ways to remember and pay tribute to the star in the days following his death.
With all the attention brought to the Twin Cities area by the star’s passing, other organizations are highlighting their own tours.
The larger Meet Minneapolis compilation includes schools, the hospital where Prince was born and the Schmitt Music mural, backdrop to one of his early photographs (find it at minneapolis.org/princes-minneapolis). The self-guided tour was available well before the artist died.
Ditto Nice Ride Minnesota, whose tour invites cyclists to make the same stops Prince did when he rode around on his motorcycle in the movie “Purple Rain.” “You can do that too, but with an even cooler bike,” it says. (Go to niceridemn.org and click on “Explore by Bike”; see the Prince tour among a listing of many.)
Now a company known for bus wine tours is jumping into the action. Waconiaville Tours rolled out its inaugural Prince Tour on May 28. (A Star Tribune reporter rode along; look for the story in Variety on June 7, Prince’s birthday.)
“I had no idea Prince was such a big deal around the country, let alone the world,” a friend said last weekend. Since Prince’s death, I’ve heard the same sentiment time and again. We underestimated his reach and influence, maybe because he was one of us, or maybe because he seemed to never tout it himself.
But it is quite clear now that Prince has fans from around the world — and that they may come to visit.
Send your questions or tips to Travel Editor Kerri Westenberg at firstname.lastname@example.org, and follow her on Twitter: @kerriwestenberg.