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Music Man, on Three Levels

I sat in the balcony to watch a preview (or Sponsor Night) performance of The Music Man by the Duluth Playhouse at the Norshor Theatre. The performance was enjoyable, the text is enjoyable, if complicated for the 21st century, and as this was my first trip into the new Norshor, I have some thoughts about that.

PDD Calendar Index: SUP, Lake Superior

Sunday: Lake Superior Day
Sunday: Blues Traveler
Monday: Teague Alexy
Tuesday: Feeding Leroy
Wednesday: Duluth Women’s Club Tour of Homes and Gardens
Thursday: Park Point 5-Miler and 2-Mile Walk
Friday: South End Days
Friday: Cloud Cult
Saturday: Bayfront Reggae & World Music Festival
Saturday: Four Bands at Beaner’s

For a complete look at what’s happening today, tomorrow and on into infinity, visit perfectduluthday.com/calendar.

PDD Quiz: Buffalo Bill and Duluth

This month’s quiz looks at Buffalo Bill Cody’s relationship with Duluth. For more information on this topic, check out this Perfect Duluth Day article, this Northland Wilds article, and this The Area Woman article.

The next PDD Quiz, on July happenings, will be published on July 29. Email question suggestions to Alison Moffat at [email protected] by July 26.

A Smiter Smote a Sinner While Smitten with Smiting

Smite is a funny word.

My husband Jesse and I were talking about Leviticus (the Quentin Tarantino chapter of the Bible) last night. We don’t spend much time musing about Leviticus (lest you think we are piouser than we are) but were discussing this letter from a gentleman sardonically applauding Dr. Laura’s use of Leviticus 18:22 to rebuke homosexuality. Naturally, we began inquiring into other modern applications of less referenced lines of the book.

After discussing our own Leviticus reflections (scariest band name, ever), we started re-imagining the Christian adage, “Love the sinner, hate the sin.” Jesse suggested, to comply with Leviticus, that we change it to, “Hate the sin, scorn the sinner?” We agreed this was too far from the spirit of the book. Leviticus is very specific (e.g., “How to Build an Altar in 1,347 Easy Steps”). And the truth is, it’s tough to read cubits allegorically, no matter how stoned you are.

I suggested, if we were going Full Monty, that we just go straight to “Love the sinner, hate the sin. Then smite the sinner. Usually to death.” Jesse piled on, “If a sinning sinner smites a loving sinner, that sinner should be smitten, also.”

The fuck?

Selective Focus: Derek Montgomery

Derek Montgomery has shown us the world through his lens as a photojournalist, and he also does portraits and weddings. He’s worked for the Duluth News Tribune and Minnesota Public Radio, and he tells us how shooting news is different from shooting a bride and groom.

DM: I’m a photographer who specializes in wedding, news and sports photography. That may seem like a lot, but it’s a pretty narrow scope. Weddings is pretty obvious what that is about. I do a lot of work in northern Minnesota with Minnesota Public Radio reporters and have been a part of many stories and projects over the years. And the sports side involves working with the athletic department at the College of St. Scholastica to document their sports teams. Along with my work at CSS, I do a ton of team and individual sports work for hockey, baseball, volleyball, lacrosse and other teams, clubs and programs in Duluth. I’ve been a professional photographer for 12 years now and have been wandering around with a camera for 16 years.

Video: Duluth Airshow 2018

Footage by Zhen Yan from last weekend’s Duluth Air and Aviation Expo.

Mystery Photo #68: Aerial Transfer Bridge

There’s no doubt the subject of this mystery photo is the gondola car on Duluth’s Aerial Bridge, but what year was the photo shot?

List of Bands that Have Played Head of the Lakes Fair in Superior

As the 2018 Head of the Lakes Fair gets underway, PDD presents a scattered list of bands that have played the festival in the past. Because … nostalgia.

The Guy Who Sings Songs About Cities & Towns – “The Truth About Duluth”

Matt Farley of Danvers, Mass. has been producing slapped-together novelty songs under clumsy pseudonyms since roughly 2004. The emphasis is clearly on quantity over quality; his website notes he has released 19,000 songs. He purportedly made $23,000 off his music in 2013.

Silent hero of Boundary Waters blowdown subject of new movie

Official title of "Sultan of Scrape" courtesy of Sultan of Scrape

The heroic story of a man who led one of Minnesota’s largest disaster rescue efforts will be told in a motion picture planned for release in 2019.

Instagrammed: Trampled by Turtles at Bayfront Park 2018

Postcard from Duluth Elks Lodge #133 in 1913

This postcard was mailed 105 years ago — June 8, 1913 — when E.J. Turnbo was “enjoying the cool breeze and having one big time.”

Mysterious Biz White Song about Duluth

We need to unearth some Duluth-based songwriter history. The current reference librarians at the Duluth Public Library are unable to track down the lyrics to a song about Duluth by Biz White, a female librarian during the 1980s and ’90s.

Here’s the conversation:

I was visiting with friends yesterday and one of them said he had been trying to find the lyrics to a song written about Duluth. It was written by Biz White, who used to work at DPL, and he thought it may have been for a Playhouse production. Some of the lyrics he remembered were, “Oh Duluth, your granite hills rise,” and “Oh Duluth, your heartless hills.” I was hoping you had some ideas.

Thanks,
Kim

Help! Does anyone have these lyrics recorded?

Ripped at Baja Billy’s in 2008

[Editor’s note: For this week’s essay we’ve pulled out another relic from the archive of Slim Goodbuzz, who served as Duluth’s connoisseur of drinking establishments from 1999 to 2009. In this article we travel back ten years to the time of the Economic Stimulus Act of 2008 — before Duluth’s Mexico Lindo restaurant existed — when the ol’ “sultan of sot” paid a visit to Baha Billy’s at the Fitger’s Brewery Complex. The article was originally published in the June 30, 2008 issue of the Transistor.]

Have all you motherfucking patriotic cheesedicks got your economic stimulus checks from the IRS yet? That’s valuable drinking money, you know. While a few misguided Duluthians might use that free cashola to pay down their massive credit-card debt or save up to fix their sewer lines, the rest of us know what it’s really for: top-shelf liquor.

And so I walk into the Fitger’s Brewery Complex with three crispy hundos in my pocket, which is pretty much the only way you can walk into a shopping mall on Grandma’s Marathon weekend. My destination is Baja Billy’s Cantina & Grill, the tourist trappiest of the four drinking establishments in the building. Sure, my money would go a lot further at, for example, the Rustic in West Duluth, but I’m not dealing with real money today. I’m going to sit outside on Duluth’s best deck, look out at the full moon over Lake Superior, and slowly get hammered, all on the U.S. taxpayer’s dime.

Selective Focus: Warrior Printress

Warrior Printress Letterpress and Design is a partnership between two creative entrepreneurs, Janelle Miller and Stacie Renné. Janelle, the original Warrior Printress, started the printing business in 2010 after apprenticing and working for Rick Allen at Kenspeckle Letterpress (featured previously on PDD). Stacie Renné, a graphic artist experienced in brand identity, advertising, and corporate communications, joined forces with Janelle this summer. This week in Selective Focus, they tell us what they have planned for Warrior Printress.

WP: The heart of our business partnership is the shared love for place, for the lake, for paper, for type, for the clank of the press, for the hiss of the ink on the press rollers, and shared passion for creating a quality impression. Couple all those things with a desire for delivering simple, creative designs that communicate clearly, and you have Warrior Printress Letterpress and Design. We fuse contemporary design, technology, and techniques with old world, quality printing processes to create a product that, as we like to say is, “as unique as you are.”