Current Events Posts

Send in the Drones

Sitting up in Woodland going on 128 hours with no electricity. Where is the cool aerial drone footage of the damage at Hartley Park (or anywhere else, for that matter)?

Why no grill wars this year?

That is all. Thanks for the comments.

Changes in Bookstores in the Duluth Region and Nationally

Village BookstoreLocal and national media are reflecting on the fate of the bookstore in Grand Rapids, Minn., about 70 miles from Duluth.

It’s small, smaller even than the Bookstore at Fitger’s, although it was crammed to the gills with books.

On tap at Bayfront: a plethora of craft beer


Duluth’s beeriest festival, All Pints North, is coming up on Saturday. Organized by the Minnesota Craft Brewer’s Guild, the tasting extravaganza at Bayfront Festival Park will include more than 120 breweries.

All Pints North began in 2012 and has mushroomed each successive year. In 2015, an estimated 3,500 people attended. The beer fest primarily highlights the guild’s roughly 100 members, but some national breweries participate as well.

Duluth Storm Damage Recap

Crumbled chimney bricks on the roof of the Board of Trade Building.

Crumbled chimney bricks on the roof of the Board of Trade Building.

A severe storm ripped through the Duluth area around 3:30 a.m., knocking down trees and leaving many without power and running water.

There are two confirmed deaths from the storm, both Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness campers who were part of a Boy Scouts of America Northern Tier High Adventure Program. A 39-year-old female and a 13-year-old male were killed by falling trees on the shore of Basswood Lake. Two others in the group were injured.

The Duluth Fire Department advised no travel this morning. There are multiple power lines down and streets blocked.

The Board of Trade Building is closed due to structural issues after lightning hit the chimney and sent parts of it through the roof. The neighboring Duluth Government Services Center has two weather stations on its roof, the newer of which clocked wind gusts in excess of 100 m.p.h.

Duluth Gate and Wayfinding Master Plan


Duluth’s Parks and Recreation Division is in the planning stages of a Gate, Wayfinding and Trail head/Orientation Plan. A public meeting took place in June where the city’s consultants provided five concept designs to be used for park entries, trail heads, information kiosks and historical markers. The city is seeking additional input from the public until July 20 using an online survey, after which a summary of the survey will be provided to the Duluth Parks Commission.

The five concept designs and additional background are online at duluthmn.gov.

Direct link to design options PDF | Direct link to survey tool

Pokemon Go Duluth Update

Does anyone have any crazy Pokemon Go Duluth stories? I see tons of evidence that the Rose Garden is overrun with Pokemon. And I saw eight kids staring into their phones at Pizza Lucé, which is a Gym across the street from a PokeStop or whatever it is.

Mix 108 has a list of sites. So does Reddit. And so does Duluth.com.

Remember, injured and orphaned wildlife should be brought to Wildwoods. Even Pokemon.

Recommendations For Alligator Removal Service?


Can anyone recommend a good alligator removal service? My brother and I own Duluth’s Best Bread and have had quite a few guests and workers eaten in the past month. I think they are coming in through the pipes or something.

I was planning on ignoring it but OSHA says if we don’t get the gators out in 90 days we have to pay like a $200 fine.

A funny thing happened on the way home from the Duluth Airshow … or is a crash landing not a funny thing?

Plane crash in Stanchfield

From the Isanti County Sheriff’s Office:

On July 9 at 6:50 p.m., the Isanti County Sheriff’s Office Communications division received a report of a plane crash in Stanchfield Township, close to the address of 38045 Lever St. NE. All emergency personnel were started to the crash.

After several minutes we received information that there were no injuries and the pilot and copilot were out walking around.

Upon arrival it was determined that a retired U.S. Navy 630 Bi-plane, yellow in color, had engine failure while flying from Duluth to Anoka.

Reflections on Race and Community-oriented Policing

DavidBeard_SEThis is going to begin in Milwaukee, pass through St. Paul, and end in Duluth.

When I was a kid, the Milwaukee Police Department gave away baseball cards. The cards were printed for the police with the Milwaukee Brewers as the celebrities. Each officer carried two, and you had to talk to more than one officer over the summer to collect a full set. It was a great strategy for bringing families and police together. My favorite Brewer was Rollie Fingers, because he had a handlebar moustache. I didn’t know anything, any damn thing at all, about baseball.

Rollie Fingers Baseball Card

The baseball cards were part of a “community-oriented policing” initiative. I was a kid; I barely understood what that meant, but I understood the problem it was meant to address.

In 1981, when I was nine, Ernest Lacy was arrested on suspicion of rape in Milwaukee. According to an account in The New York Times, Lacy was taken into a police van, where “two of the officers then held his legs down by placing their feet on his legs, and a third officer placed his knee between Mr. Lacy’s shoulder blades, forcing him to lie face down with his left cheek pinned to the ground. … Then, one of the policemen pulled Mr. Lacy’s arms up beyond his shoulder blades and over his ears [with] one violent, convulsive seizure and then the black man was absolutely still. … [T]he extension of Mr. Lacy’s arms toward his head interfered with the flow of oxygen to his lungs. … [T]his was fatal.” Lacy was taken alive into a police van and was removed dead, a victim of police brutality.

(Another man was convicted of the rape, if that matters to anyone reading this. It shouldn’t for Ernest Lacy any more than it did for Clayton, Jackson and McGhie.)

PDD Quiz: June 2016

juicepharmgiselleJune happened. Now, what do you remember? Take the quiz and find out.

Uber poised to enter Duluth market

Uber logoThe question might not be why Duluth doesn’t have Uber service, but when it will.

“By the end of the year,” said Duluth City Councilor Noah Hobbs. “From my personal end I don’t see anything holding us back from having Uber operating in Duluth.”

Hobbs held the first formal meeting on Tuesday in regard to the ride-hailing web application operating in the city. He met with City Attorney Nate LaCoursiere as a starting point for crafting an ordinance to regulate Uber and other transportation network companies.

Unlike taxicabs, Uber utilizes an online platform to connect drivers in their personal vehicles with riders paying for fares through the touch of a button, no cash. This type of techy transportation is taking place in 476 cities worldwide and counting. Uber started out seven years ago in cities like San Francisco and Chicago, and has recently expanded into smaller communities like Moorhead and Iowa City.

Norshor Theatre renovations begin


NorShor BarThe deal to restore Duluth’s historic Norshor Theatre has finally come together, and renovation work is underway. Last week, WDSE-TV‘s Almanac North hosts Dennis Anderson and Julie Zenner discussed the project with Duluth Mayor Emily Larson and Duluth Playhouse Executive and Artistic Director Christine Gradl Seitz.

Local casket business dies

Duluth Casket ShopHey, when did Duluth Casket Shop go out of business? Did local media completely fail to produce the kind of headline people get into journalism for in the first place?

Public comment sought on EAW for Spirit Mountain projects

bermThe city of Duluth is accepting public comments until July 13 on an environmental assessment worksheet that was prepared for proposed projects at Spirit Mountain Recreation Area in 2016-2017. The plans include Nordic cross-country ski trails, mountain bike trails, Superior Hiking Trail extensions, rail-to-trail conversion, and an 18-hole disc golf course.

The proposed projects would initiate when all permits and approvals are received. They are part of the St. Louis River Corridor Initiative aimed at revitalizing and enhancing recreational opportunities and appropriate development in the western corridor of Duluth.