Peaceful Duluth Day


This is a fun little project I’ve been thinking about for a while.  I thought today is as good of a day as any to post.  Did I miss any?

Favorite Duluth Albums of 2014

2014 Album Covers

Yes, it’s time once again to get all judgmental about the local music scene and pick the best albums of the year for further breakdown into a fancy PDD poll. There were at least four-dozen albums released by local musicians in 2014, which means few people have listened to them all. So, how do we begin?

Well, it’s fairly simple. In the comments to this post we ask you, the local brain trust, to mention your favorite albums from the past year, then we use that list to generate the nominees for the poll we’ll run a few days from now. It is acceptable, by the way, to nominate an album that came out late in 2013 and maybe didn’t capture much attention until 2014.

With so much local music being produced, of course, it’s hard for even devotees to feel like they have much of a grasp on everything that’s out there, but note that the list of albums linked above contains numerous links to Bandcamp pages where you can listen to many, many tunes for the low, low price of free. So browse, listen, or just spout off about how good the new album by your best friend’s band is and consider yourself an expert. It’s only rawk and/or roll, after all.

Charlie Parr – 30 Minute Music Hour


The self-taught guitarist from Duluth performs his Piedmont-style blues live in the Wisconsin Public Television studios in Madison.

Chester Bowl Freestyle Cadet’s-eye View


Last year, Chester Bowl added “Freestyle Cadet” to the list of active groups at the ski hill. These kids build and groom the jumps, rails and other stuff located toward the top of the hill. For those who don’t get to the top of the hill, here’s a cadet’s-eye view from James Holak.

Artificial trailer and Indiegogo campaign


My name is Lance Karasti and my team and I are working on a new project that will be filmed in Duluth over the next year. Artificial is about a young photographer who meets a mysterious visionary with plans to create a sentient program. We’ve already shot the prologue of the movie which features the photographer traveling around town and capturing some of the Duluth’s most iconic scenes.

For $10 you can get a copy of the film and your name in the end credits. Please consider supporting local filmmaking by donating and sharing the link. Thank you for your past and current support.

One Chill Ride


Keegan Burckhard compares various transportation modes for his commute to the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Do the School Board Twist

It’s been a while since Perfect Duluth Day held any rousing debates on the Duluth School Board and its ensuing antics as Loren Martel has issued one scathing indictment after another, illustrating in great detail the buffoonery he believes gurgles forth from this wily group of characters.

I’d like to field some of your fair and balanced opinions on what you think of this current chapter of someday Duluth history. How do you feel about the school board heading into 2015? The narrator will refrain from comment.

This Week: Christmas, Christmas, Christmas and more

Untitled design
Here’s a bit of what you’ll find on this week’s PDD Calendar:

It’s Christmas week, so it’s basically your final chance to get out and get a cheer infusion. The lights are still up at Bentleyville, Glensheen and Fairlawn, and Rubber Chicken’s holiday revue is still kicking.

Post-holiday, there’s lots to do. Check out Teague Alexy and Low Forms at the Red Star on different evenings, and see stand-up and improv comedy to laugh away the post-holiday blues.

But the real news of the week, of course, is that you can park for free downtown on Christmas Day. So why not ditch your family, drive downtown, and just aimlessly park your car in various places over and over? It’s gotta be better than listening to Uncle Jim talk about his political views, surely. Surely.

Holidays and Such

I saw the Wise Fool Shakespeare production of A Christmas Carol this afternoon with Lucie Amundsen.

Lucie wrote:

Didn’t make it to the Wise Fool Shakespeare ‘s Christmas Carol? Dude, you missed out. Goosebumps, guffaws and a little case of the verklempts. Thanks cast for giving up your autumn to make my Solstice.

It’s true — community theater is hundreds of hours to produce a work as awesome as this one. I am grateful, as Lucie was, for all their efforts. Jodi Kujawa stole the show, for me, as the Ghost of Christmas Present doing a little fourth-wall breaking, too. But the whole afternoon was awesome, twice as awesome because Sunday was “pay what you can,” so the crowd was even more energetic than you might expect.

Kujawa wise

I ended today shopping at the Mall, where I saw Brian Rauvola shopping, too. Brian has done as much as any one man can to sustain a culture of photography in Duluth, and it’s good to see him take a breather from that work. I still miss the Duluth Photography Institute, which was his baby.

Ladyslipper at the Red Herring; Arte de Moira

I have a lot of art experiences to relate this week, but I thought I should set aside two today, and a few more this weekend, when blog traffic is admittedly lower, I bet.

moira 2 ladyslipper2

The Zamboni Explosion and Peterson Arena Fire of 2004

peterson arenaIt’s been 10 years since Peterson Arena was gutted by fire on Dec. 19, 2004. The image of the wreckage at left is a Bob King photo for the Duluth News Tribune, boosted from USA Today‘s story about the unfortunate and scary, yet still undeniably comical, Zamboni explosion. The fire marked the end of Peterson Arena, which served as the only indoor ice rink in western Duluth from 1971 to 2004. It was replaced by the Duluth Heritage Sports Center at Clyde Park, which opened in 2008.

Duluth Grill looking for more local food suppliers

Duluth Grill is looking to expand its local suppliers and is specifically interested in a place to find lamb … as well as other good local products. The restaurant spent over $399,000 with local farms and businesses last year, and is looking to expand.

Selective Focus: Getting Around

Kip Praslowicz

Kip Praslowicz, untitled

This week’s entries covered a wide spectrum, though I had hoped someone might have submitted that jet outside the American Legion Post 71, or even a shot of illicit substances (I mentioned conveyances of any sort, yes?). Bear in mind, our themes are open to your broadest possible interpretation. The ironic, the cheeky, and the challenging… all are welcome here (except perhaps the snarky).

Hey, filmmakers! Come to Duluth!

I’ve thought for a long time that Duluth is great on film. I think this does a good job selling our many assets. What did they miss?

Red Mountain – “Forestasia”


Perfect Duluth Day rendezvoused with Red Mountain on Goat Hill, and put together a little something special to get you in the spirit of hanging with friends and family this holiday season. Thanks to the Homegrown Music Festival for support in putting this together.

Find this video and other short clips of antics celebrating the season by clicking on this highlighted red text to view “A Perfect Duluth Christmas: PDD’s Holiday Video Showcase.”

A reminder: Homegrown band registration starts Dec. 25 and ends Jan. 31. The Winter Fiasco will be Jan. 30 at the Red Herring Lounge, Prove Gallery and Carmody Irish Pub. And the mighty Homegrown Music Festival itself happens April 26 to May 3.