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Edit Values Community Highlights: Meet Tom Bartel of Travel Past 50 and MN Trips

Today we’d like to introduce you to Tom Bartel.

Hi Tom, can you start by introducing yourself? We’d love to learn more about how you got to where you are today?
My wife, Kristin Henning, and I were the founders of the weekly newspaper City Pages in the Twin Cities. After selling it in 1997, we taught journalism at the University of Minnesota, then founded The Rake Magazine in 2001. After closing The Rake in 2009, we sold our house and most of our possessions and began traveling full time in 2010. We’ve been doing that since then, visiting more than 70 countries, and blogging about our travels at

During the pandemic, our international travels were limited, so we started another blog about our home state of Minnesota:

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It’s never a smooth road–literally or figuratively. But that’s the charm. If travel were completely predictable, you’d probably be better off staying home.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your business?
Travel Past 50 and MN Trips are both travel blogs that have built an audience and a clientele for our writing over the past nine years.

We’re known for our travel writing, specializing in culture and adventure for adults over 50. We’ve also built a business around our writing and photography and have several clients who cater to the travel market.

Our writing and photography has been published in our own blogs, as well as numerous books, including the National Geographic book Ultimate Journeys for Two, Great Hiking Trails of the World, published by Rizzoli Press, and most recently, my photography has appeared in Europe’s 100 Greatest Cathedrals, published by Penguin Press.

We have both won awards for our writing and photography from the Society of American Travel Writers, The North American Travel Journalists Association, and The International Food Wine Travel Writers’ Association.

What are your plans for the future?
We’re looking forward to getting back to international travel. We’re just back from our first trip in nearly two years to Spain.

Next up, early next year will be in Africa, specifically Kenya.

We’re also hoping to do a road trip circumnavigating Lake Superior next summer.

Contact Info:

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