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Paul Lundgren - Author Archive

Raven & Associates closing; farmers market opening in West Duluth »

David Orman announced this morning that his promotional products business, Raven & Associates, will close at the end of July. Orman founded the company in 1997 and changed locations a handful of times before landing in the old West Theater building in 2012.

“We are in a low margin, high touch industry,” Orman wrote to customers today. “As busy as we were, it was really hard to make money.”

Meanwhile, the West Duluth Business Club announced there will be a new farmers market in West Duluth on the lot of the former Westminster Church. Beginning this week it will operate every Thursday into October, from 3 to 7 p.m., on the corner of 45th Avenue West and Grand Avenue.

“In the beginning it will host between 6 and 10 vendors,” West Duluth Business Club President Charlie Stauduhar wrote to club members. “Please, if you can, show up on Thursday and thank the vendors with your support.”

The Swamp Sisters of Saginaw »

About a half-hour drive northwest of Duluth, in the unincorporated community of Saginaw, Swamp Sisters summer restaurant kicks out breakfast and lunch grub to fleets of mostly white-haired patrons who fill the gravel driveway with their cars and assisted-living-community shuttle vans. It’s open for about two months each year, on Fridays and Saturdays only, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the swampy old Armstrong farmstead. And all of that, of course, makes this place awesome.

This week: Festival season in full force »

Pretty much everything happening this time of year is part of a festival or concert series, so as we highlight items this week from the PDD Calendar, we’ll just pretend everything is part of a festival, even if it isn’t.

The Bayside Sounds concert series continues on Wednesday with
North Shore Sounds and Superior Singers performing at Billings Park in Superior. Earlier in the day, the Brothers Burn Mountain play a lunchtime gig as part of Lake Place Summer Sounds in Duluth. The Wednesday Night at the Races events for the kiddos begin on Wednesday as well.

On Friday there’s the Free Range Film Festival, Movies in the Park, the Current broadcasting live from the opening of Endion Station Public House and hosting a concert featuring Low at the Red Herring Lounge as part of CurrentFest, and the bars on North Tower Avenue host a Grand Reopening Celebration as part of the Superior’s Downtown Strip Isn’t Under Construction Anymore Festival.

Saturday events include the All Pints North Summer Brew Fest, the Board Across the Bay Race and Festival, Carlton Daze and the Mudman Race as part of Extreme Obstacle Course Daze.

And calendar editor Lawrence Lee should be back on the job at any moment, beginning PDD’s Back to Normal Fest.

Remembering »

It’s probably not worth remembering this, but an image from it resides in PDD’s archives and the controversy surrounding it occurred ten years ago this month, so we’ll give it passing mention.

There once was a satirical website at that was far more sophomoric than funny, but famously raised the ire of Duluth’s then-mayor Herb Bergson, who asked the city attorney to look into the legal means to have the site shut down.

A Dozen Excuses Donuts on Tower Avenue »

A Dozen Excuses opened on Wednesday, serving donuts, coffee, sandwiches, coney dogs, etc. at 1112 Tower Ave., in the Still-point Building next to the Palace Bar in Superior. It’s the former location of Northwoods Guitar.

  • Open 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Saturday
  • Owners: Melissa Hyatt and Cliff Lindberg
  • Baker: Joe Dougherty

Dave on Dave: TBT’s Carroll comments on band’s previous Letterman appearance »

On the occasion of Duluth band Trampled by Turtles making a second appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman — tonight at 10:35 p.m. on KDLH-TV channel 3.1 — I looked back at notes from an interview with Banjo Dave Carroll from spring 2013. He told stories about being on the Letterman and Craig Ferguson shows that didn’t make it into the story I was working on at the time.

Here is Carroll sharing an anecdote about taking a break outside the Ed Sullivan Theater before the Letterman gig:

They have these barriers on the sidewalks that are kind of gated off for photographers to hang out and allow them to get a picture of celebrities — whoever’s coming in. … It happened to be Amy Phoeler. We were hanging out there, and there were all these photographers. Her black town car or whatever pulls up, the photographer looks at us and says, ‘hey are you guys in the band?’ We kind of looked at each other and said ‘yeah, yeah we’re in the band.’ And they just said, ‘hey, get out of the way!’” Amy Poehler was coming across the street and they didn’t want us to be in the background with her.


Guy Fieri in West Duluth and Superior »

Guy Fieri is back in town shooting for future episodes of the Food Network’s Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives. So far he’s been to Gannucci’s Italian Market and Pak’s Green Corner in West Duluth, and Shorty’s Pizza & Smoked Meats and the Kounty Quarthouse in Superior.

This week: TBT on TV, Fractals on a soccer field and Todd Eckart in a parking lot »

A system of unseasonably cool air is expected to roll in today, but the various summer festivals will be every bit as fun while you are wearing jackets and long pants. Here come the highlights from the PDD Calendar.

The week starts as every week should — with a hardcore heavy metal concert at a Christian indoor skate park. Colossus, Conveyer, Strengthen What Remains, Lessons and Heart’s Bane all perform at the Encounter on Monday. You can choose instead to hang out in a wood shop and make beds for the needy, so there are at least two places to wear a sleeveless shirt this week.

Tuesday night the Chester Creek Concert Series continues with a performance by the Formal Age. Later in the evening, at Tycoons Alehouse, the Adam Booker Group will be playing jazz versions of Trampled by Turtles songs. Why? For fun, that’s why. But also because the hometown heroes are releasing a new album and appearing on The Late Show with David Letterman again.

Duluth Mystery Photo #17: Residence of Luther Mendenhall »

Did those asbestos shingles last a century? Is the Luther Mendenhall residence still standing? Where is it, or where was it?

The Way North: Duluth »

In a series for the New York Times, Damien Cave and Todd Heisler travel up Interstate 35, from Laredo, Tex., to Duluth, chronicling how the middle of America is being changed by immigration. They spend day 37 in Duluth.

DECC Casino? »

On the agenda for next week’s Duluth City Council meeting is a resolution requesting the state legislature “amend state gambling laws to provide for the operation of a for-profit casino at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center or other location within Duluth.” (Update: Councilor Howie Hanson has told the Duluth News Tribune his proposal will likely be tabled and later taken up at a committee-of-the-whole meeting.)

Here’s the document text:

Purchasing and Licensing Committee

Resolution requesting the state legislature amend state gambling laws to provide for the operation of a for-profit casino at the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center.

The End of Streetcars in Duluth »

Seventy-five years ago today — July 9, 1939 — streetcars ran in Duluth for the last time. Streetcar service had been gradually phased out by trolley buses for nearly 20 years before meeting its total demise. For more info check out Zenith City Online’s history of Duluth’s Streetcar Railways and the Duluth Transit Authority’s History of Public Transportation in the Twin Ports timeline.

Yoerg’s Brewery »

On this date 165 years ago — July 6, 1849 — Bavarian immigrant Anthony Yoerg opened Minnesota’s first brewery in St. Paul.

Interesting side note on Yoerg’s Brewery: In 1871 the operation moved to a spot adjacent to the Lilydale caves. Yoerg used the natural caves to store his product, and added the phrase “cave-aged” to the label. There are a number of places online to read about Yoerg’s Brewery, but of particular interest is the Substreet underground history site, which profiles Yoerg’s lost cellars.

Justin Berke’s Year in Duluth »

Justin Berke recently celebrated his one-year anniversary of living in Duluth by creating an infographic website at

Where in Wisconsin? »

In a twist on the usual game of “Where in Duluth?” we this time ask for the location in Wisconsin where this seven-year-old clipping from Atlantic Monthly hangs. The article was brought to PDD’s attention because it contains a quote by Duluth’s John Ramos, who also graces this website with various posts and comments.

Duluth 2014 Primary Election Sample Ballot »

Below is what the Primary Election ballot will look like on Aug. 12 if you live in House District 7B — the western part of Duluth. If you live in District 7A or 3B you’ll see different House races, but those candidates are unopposed within their parties anyway.

This is a “Partisan Primary Ballot,” so voters must choose a party — Independence, Republican or Democratic-Farmer-Labor — and vote a straight ticket for that party. Follow this link for a more complicated primer with links to candidate websites.

Endion Station Public House opening soon »

Endion Station Public House is opening July 25. It will serve pulled-meat sandwiches and Brewhouse beer in the historic train depot on the Lakewalk, and there are plans for live music on the patio.

Big ol’ snapping turtle on Duluth’s Western Waterfront Trail »

Here’s an opportunity for someone who knows a lot about turtles to show off and tell us all what specific kind of snapping turtle we are looking at here. It was spotted around 2:30 p.m. today lolling around by that nice little swampy nook just west of Indian Point Campground.

Happy Eleventeenth Birthday to us! »

Perfect Duluth Day is eleven years old today — Sunday, June 29, 2014. The official celebration is at Carmody Irish Pub tonight at 8 p.m. Fabulous prizes will be awarded to the top finishers of this week’s Pub Quiz, the questions for which will all be related to PDD. It’s a super tough quiz, so study intensively.

Duluth Scavenger Hunts »

Above is KBJR-TV video from ten years ago today of the Duluth Citywide Scavenger Hunt of 2004. Below is WDIO-TV video from the Scavaganza put on by Youth for Duluth last month.