Interstate 94 Through Michigan Is Part of America’s ‘Highway of Culture’
You may not think much of a lowly interstate highway being much more than a way to get from one city to another but many of these roads can take on a greater identity. Consider the I-95 corridor along the East Coast or I-4 which bisects Florida.
You may not think Interstate 94 has much of an identity as it runs along the northern tier of states in the nation's midsection. But what started as an internet joke naming I-94 as America's Highway of Culture may have some relevance.
I-94 begins in Port Huron, Michigan and runs to rural Montana. Between MI and MT the roadway passes through Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota and North Dakota. But sorry, Montana and North Dakota, you're not a part of this. We're concerned with the stretch from Michigan to Minnesota.
The gag started on the NFC Central Meme War Reddit group. The group consists of football fans of the Detroit Lions, Chicago Bears, Green Bay Packers and Minnesota Vikings taking shots at each other.
I-94 runs through each of these states and directly through Detroit, Chicago and Minneapolis. Green Bay is the geographic outlier here and that's the gag. Detroit, Chicago and the Twin Cities are portrayed as cultured and Green Bay as a backwater full of rubes.
Consider Music: Detroit has Motown and Seger and Eminem. Chicago has the blues and jazz, Minneapolis has Prince while Green Bay has, um, polka?
Consider the arts: Detroit Minny and Chicago all have world class institutes of art with instantly recognizable paintings in their collections.
Consider even the Cheesecake Factory: If you consider a nearby Cheesecake Factory a sign of high-class living, there are restaurants from the chain in each of the three cities except Green Bay which is a not leisurely 120-minute drive from the nearest in Milwaukee.
Getting away from the Reddit Memes, I-94 also passes through Madison Wisconsin and its state University. Even Northwest Indiana can get some recognition for the region's dunes.
So if you consider the internet as an arbiter of taste, then I-94 has it.
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