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brian - Author Archive

Graphic Artist, designer, illustrator, animator. + One of the bozos that run this site.

What’s more American than PDD? »

I don’t recognize any of the PDD community in this trailer. Were we all out of town when this guy rolled his Airstream through Duluth?

Ice Cutter on Lake Superior »

Amazing images by Carl Sauer of an ice cutter takin’ care of business on Lake Superior.

Wired’s 15 Most Fascinating at SXSW – Duluthian Mike Scholtz »

Mike Scholtz and Amy C. Elliott

Wired magazine posted “The 15 Most Fascinating Filmmakers and Stars at SXSW” and right up there with Tilda Swinton, Robert Rodriguez, and Jon Favreau is our very own Mike Scholtz and his partner on Wicker Kittens, Amy C. Elliott.

Wicker Kittens premiered at SXSW, and apparently got great response. Here’s the trailer.

Ice Dam Cam »

The shovel cam has been repurposed into the ice dam cam. It’s not nearly as fun as the shovel cam, it’s frustratingly hard to use, depressing and doesn’t get much done.

There is nothing left in anybody »

Known to most of the world as “The Skiathlon Announcer” Duluth’s own Chad Salmela has gained notoriety as one of the stars of the Sochi Olympics. According to the web site Awful Announcing, “Chad Salmela is to the Winter Olympics what Rowdy Gaines is to the Summer Olympics.”

Here’s NBC’s official link.

PDD Shovel Cam »

While Cory has been traveling to exotic locations and honing his skills with the PDD Drone, I’ve been perfecting the PDD Shovel Cam.

Chester Bowl on MPR’s “Minnesota Sounds and Voices” »

Dan Olsen from MPR did a story on Chester Bowl that aired today. Fantastic photos by Derek Montgomery too.

Couple of “streaming” videos from the cold »

This second video is much less lovely and mildly NSFW.

Connolly’s: Behind the Batter »

For the past few years around this time, the discussion on PDD has turned to Tom & Jerrys – where to find the fixins, if there are acceptable alternatives to Connolly’s, and the ups and downs for Connolly’s.

The PDD film crew got sweet and sticky with Steve Knauss and John Kurth as they began production on this year’s batch of Connolly’s Tom & Jerry batter.

Stay warm, stay frothy.

Duluth Sister Cities – Ohara-Isumi City »

The Duluth Sister Cities-Ohara Japan delegation for kids 12-15 is taking applications until Jan 3. The group will travel to Japan for 10 days in August 2014 and host a Japanese student in August 2015.

More info, an application, and FAQ is here.

Employment at Chester Bowl »

Snow making started a couple weeks ago at Chester Bowl. With this snowstorm and the stolen lift chair returned, the hill should be ready to go for the projected December 14 opening date.

Thom Storm, who has operated the ski program at Chester since the 70s, is planning to retire at the end of the 2015 ski season. Clearly, those are going to be some big shoes to fill, and the Chester Bowl Improvement Club is looking to hire someone to begin working with Thom this year.

Part-Time Executive Director

Also hiring:
ski instructors and snowboard instructors.

Check the links for more info.

Snowmaking photo by Jeremy Kershaw.

Happy Holidays from Rubber Chicken and Perfect Duluth Day »

Here’s a little ditty from this year’s Rubber Chicken Theater holiday comedy revue — How the Grinch Shut Down Christmas, or, I Saw Rudolph Twerking Santa Claus — featuring Greg J. Anderson, Sharon Dixon Obst and Anders Hultstrom.

Thanks to Dean Vogtman at Happy Tree Productions for the use of his studio, and the fine folks at Beaner’s Central who had to shimmy around our cameras to get across the room.

All outdoor scenes were actually shot outdoors.

PDD Gift Guide 2013 »

Get your commerce on. Here is PDD’s annual reminder that the real purpose of Christmas is to obtain material things … as long as they are locally made.

This being the fifth year of the PDD Gift Guide, most of you know the drill by now, but for uninitiated newbies the concept is simple: The folks behind the curtain at PDD select 15 locally-based holiday gift ideas, which are highlighted in the thumbnails above. Click any thumbnail to read details about that item. The community at large is free to add other suggestions and links in the comment section below, with some effort to not be too redundant and repeat items from the Gift Guides of Christmases Past.

PDD Gift Guide 2012
PDD Gift Guide 2011
PDD Gift Guide 2010
PDD Gift Guide 2009

Superior Skydivers Crash footage »

Hey, I can see my house from here.


Halloween Banners 2013 »

It’s the annual call for Halloween banners on PDD.

Post-PDDX Banners »

Back in April we announced that we’d be retiring all of the old banners. Well, the day has come, happy birthday to us, and sayonara to the old banners. Welcome the new, fresh banners. The old banners have been archived here on Google plus.

We also announced a banner contest, any banner submitted after Jan 1, 2013 was eligible for a $100 prize. The lucky winner was Shawn Thompson, with his Bunyan-esque photo of Nate Lindstrom.

There were a lot of great entries, and you’ll begin seeing all of them at the top of the page. As always, you can continue to submit your banners to PDD by following these guidelines.

Is it over yet? »

Photo taken June 3, 2013. According to Thom Storm, this is the latest date snow has stayed on the Chester Bowl ski hill by about a month.

The Lark of Duluth »

Former PDD video intern Jamie Merideth shot and edited this video about the replica of the Lark of Duluth, “The World’s First Airliner,” being built at Sky Harbor.

There will be a Centennial event at Sky Harbor this summer from July 12-14th.

Homegrown Video Fest »

Zombies! Fast Cars! Cowboys! Cheese sauce!

We will be archiving the 2013 Homegrown Music Video Fest videos on this page as they continue to get sent to us. It was another standing room only premiere this year at the Zinema. There will be encore screenings Wednesday at Zinema, and Sunday at Sara’s Table / Chester Creek Cafe.

PDD Banners »

On June 29 PDD will be awarding $100 to the person who submits the best new banner. Everyone who has submitted one since Jan. 1 will be eligible. Pre-2013 banners will be pulled from rotation on June 29, but will be kept in archival storage and maintained by nice librarians with white cotton gloves at Google Plus. Banners from 2005-2009 can be found here.

We’re also looking for new Homegrown banners. Those submissions will be eligible for the same $100 prize. For full details on banner submissions, click here. The basic info is the image must be 960 pixels wide by 167 pixels high. The Perfect Duluth Day logo will be added by PDD’s art department. Send them to banners @