Mark Nicklawske Posts

Spirit Mountain, Mission Creek trail link ready

A biker crosses the new Sargent Creek bridge on the DWP Trail Connector west of Ely Peak. (Photos by Mark Nicklawske)

A critical bridge is open, a tunnel has been repaired and work is nearly complete on a six-mile scenic trail that uses a former rail line to connect two large recreation sites on the west side of Duluth.

The city’s Parks and Recreation Division is in the final stages of improvements to the Duluth Winnipeg & Pacific Trail Connector which provides a direct link between the Mission Creek trail system in the Frederick Rodney Paine Forest Preserve and Spirit Mountain. A ribbon cutting on the $600,000 trail project is expected later this summer.

Limited tickets available to Alan Sparhawk at Sacred Heart

Sacred Heart Music Center has just released a small amount of free tickets for a studio audience at its Live from the Heart songwriters/storytellers livestream featuring Alan Sparhawk.

Mysterious timber crib disappears from Canal Park beach

A large timber crib, shown here in 2010, was beached for almost 15 years. City officials said the structure was removed and demolished as part of the recently completed Lakewalk improvement project. (Photo by Kip Praslowicz)

A mysterious wooden structure that had been shipwrecked for years on a Canal Park beach has disappeared following a year-long project designed to improve a popular Duluth walking trail battered by Lake Superior storms.

Elvis slept here: Radisson opens Legends Suite

Radisson Hotel Duluth Harborview Sales and Marketing Director Nancy Kilpo poses with Duluth musician Todd Eckart, impersonating Elvis Presley, in the hotel’s newly redecorated Legends Suite. Presley stayed in the 15th floor suite following Duluth performances in 1976 and 1977. (Photo by Mark Nicklawske)

Elvis Presley fans who want to live like the king of rock and roll now have a special place to stay in Duluth.

The Radisson Hotel Duluth Harborview, 505 Superior St., has redecorated and renamed its 15th floor suite where Presley stayed following Twin Ports performances in 1976 and 1977. The Legends Suite features concert photos, posters, a ticket stub and other memorabilia recognizing the Presley visit as well as tributes to singer-songwriter Bob Dylan — who was born in Duluth — and country music outlaw Willie Nelson.

Blacklist Brewing finds new space downtown

Blacklist Brewing Company will move its taproom and brewing operations from 120 E. Superior St. to the Lange Motors building one block east this summer. (Photos by Mark Nicklawske).

A Downtown Duluth brewery and taproom is moving into a larger, newly renovated space just an axe-toss away from its existing location on East Superior Street.

Blacklist Brewing Company will move its brewing operations, taproom and axe-throwing lanes one block east into the historic Lange Motors building at 206 E. Superior St. The move will almost double its serving and entertainment space and increase its brewing capacity.

Demolition, apartments is new plan for Esmond building

The Esmond Building – formerly the Seaway Hotel – at 2001 W. Superior St. in Lincoln Park. The now vacant, city-owned building would be demolished and replaced with a mixed use housing project under a new redevelopment proposal. (Photo by Mark Nicklawske)

A historic but blighted building in the heart of the Lincoln Park craft district could be headed for demolition after plans to renovate the city-owned property fell through and officials started working with a new developer.

R.I.P. Robert’s Home Furnishings building

The former Robert’s Home Furnishings building at 2102 W. Superior St. in Lincoln Park was torn down last week. Robert Rothenberger launched furniture retail business in 1987 and closed its doors in October 2018 upon retirement. Roberts was part of  the “big three” furniture stores that anchored the West End for decades. The building was constructed 1890 as a lumber warehouse. Rachel Development, based in St. Michael, Minn., plans to build a four-story, 74-unit housing project on the site. Rothenberger died in November. Photo by Mark Nicklawske.

Shuttered Park Point church orchestrates big land sale

Our Lady of Mercy Catholic Church sits on just under one acre of land adjacent to Lake Superior on Minnesota Point. (Photo by Mark Nicklawske)

A historic church building perched on Lake Superior beachfront property is up for sale and the top bidder will win the largest developable site available in the Park Point neighborhood.

Our Lady of Mercy/St. Mary Star of the Sea Catholic Church officials will open bids for Our Lady of Mercy church, 2002 Minnesota Ave., on Feb. 1. The small neighborhood church was closed in July 2016 and its nearly one-acre lakeside parcel was listed for sale three months ago. The asking price is $650,000.

Mystery Photo #126: Twin ‘Tin Man’ Water Towers

The harbor looks busy in this vintage photo for sale at the Superior Salvation Army

I found this framed photo with an unusual view of the Duluth Harbor and Aerial Lift Bridge at the Superior Salvation Army last weekend. It’s signed by Tim Slattery.

Lots of questions about this picture: Was the photo taken from a structure or from an airplane? Can anyone identify the three (!) ships in the port? What jumped out to me were the twin “tin man” water towers on the hill above the bridge. Where were they located and when were they taken down?

Lake Superior Brewing gets new owners, will move to Lakeside

Seth and Sarah Maxim have purchased Lake Superior Brewing Company and plan to move operations into the former Xcel Xercise fitness center at 5423 E. Superior St. (Photo by Mark Nicklawske)

An iconic craft brewery, the first of its kind in Minnesota, has been sold and new owners plan to move operations from Duluth’s Lincoln Park neighborhood to Lakeside.

Witherspoon brothers plan revival of soul food restaurant

Solomon, left, and Stephan Witherspoon plan to open a new soul food restaurant in Duluth next year. The brothers will use their father’s time-tested recipes. (Photo by Mark Nicklawske)

Inspired by their father’s long-gone West Duluth restaurant, two brothers have announced plans to open a new eatery that will feature time-tested fried chicken recipes taken directly from the family cookbook.

Stephan and Solomon Witherspoon said last week they are actively searching for a location to house a new restaurant to be named Doc Witherspoon’s Soul Food Kitchen. The Witherspoons will launch a series of fundraisers this week and plan to open their new establishment and catering business in 2021.

Reservoir ruins sale offers cliff views, odd history

The ruins of the 1884 Duluth Gas and Water Company reservoir can be seen from West First Street, just west of Point of Rocks. (Photos by Mark Nicklawske)

The sprawling and mysterious stand of stone and brick ruins that occupies perhaps the best clifftop view over Duluth’s harbor is for sale.

Boathouse vintage market opens Aug. 8 in Lincoln Park

Boathouse Treats and Treasures vintage market, 2009 W. Superior St., will open its doors Saturday, Aug. 8. It is located in the former Carr’s Hobby Shop building. (Photo by Mark Nicklawske).

Owners of a new jam-packed vintage market located in a former Lincoln Park hobby shop have announced a grand opening date.

RiverWest project near Spirit Mountain wins road approval

The site of the planned RiverWest development is at the foot of Spirit Mountain, between Grand Avenue and the BNSF Railroad tracks. (Photo by Liftoff Aerials)

An ambitious but long-dormant redevelopment project designed for outdoor enthusiasts received a jumpstart last week when city officials authorized new road construction below Spirit Mountain Recreation Area.

Live STEAM! Brothers Burn Mountain roast Sacred Heart stage

The Brothers Burn Mountain landed the hottest, steamiest, most oppressive weather of the summer to torch the Sacred Heart Music Center altar stage with their patented end-of-the-show drum breakdown.

Note: 19th Century cathedrals were not equipped with air-conditioning.

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, sound engineer Eric Swanson and video director Rich Narum were the only people on hand to capture the July 18 scorcher.

Watch with an ice cold beverage in hand.

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