Image via Flickr by jpellgen
The Mary Tyler Moore Show was a game-changer when it first appeared. Mary was one of the first career girls living happily without a husband on television, and she paved the way for other female characters to be something besides a wife, mom, or girlfriend. Here’s some information on landmarks that fans of the show might want to visit.
Mary Tyler Moore Statue
During those opening credits, Mary throws her hat into the air in a moment of complete confidence and joy. That iconic image has been captured in a statue. The figure had to be removed for sidewalk construction in 2015 and was scheduled to be in storage for two years, but a public outcry forced city officials to bring Mary out into the open again. She’s currently on display inside the visitors’ center. Tip: Wear a hat so you can mimic her pose in a photo.
Nicollet Avenue Shops
During those credits, Mary shops on Nicollet Avenue, right next to the IDS Crystal Court, which is a mall with a food court and indoor park. You can visit the IDS Center at Nicollet Avenue and Seventh Street downtown. Many of the MTM landmarks are close to the IDS center on Nicollet, so you might want to get a hotel near Target Center, which is just five minutes away.
During the first several seasons, Mary lived in an apartment inside a very posh house. The home that was used for exterior filming is located at 2104 Kenwood Avenue. The man who owned the home at the time didn’t like the fans driving by to look at the place all the time, and he campaigned to make Mary move. He was finally successful in 1975.
In 1975, Mary moved into a high-rise apartment building called Riverside Towers. The building still exists, although much of the construction that was planned at the location was never completed. The building isn’t much of a tourist attraction today — the area is very high-crime, and Mary’s tower is locally referred to as the “crack stack.”
Lake of the Isles
When you see Mary Richards walking beside a lake, you’re looking at the Lake of the Isles. That lake is one of a chain of lakes that run through Minneapolis, formed by ancient twists and turns in the Mississippi River. To get there, take Lake Street west from Interstate 35W and then turn north on East Calhoun Parkway to Lake of the Isles Parkway.
Mary’s Office Building
Mary worked with Lou Grant, Murray Slaughter, and the rest of the fictional news crew at WJM Channel 12. Exterior shots of the office building reveal a tall skyscraper called the Snyder Building. The Snyder Building was actually played by the Midwest Federal Savings and Loan building, which is one block south of the IDS center. The building has been renamed Midwest Plaza.
If you’re a die-hard fan of the Mary Tyler Moore show, and you’re headed to Minneapolis, you’ll get a big kick out of visiting these landmarks from the show. Just remember that it’s been more than 40 years and the city has changed a bit.