David Beard Posts

Duluth Trivia, April 1 Edition (no April Fools here)

Below are more items from an old trivia deck I bought at Savers. Some of the questions can be misleading and the answers wrong, but such is the way with history.

1. Name the master stone sculptor who carved the stone ornaments on so many Duluth homes and buildings.
2. What was the College of St. Scholastica’s earlier name?
3. Who were Bob Junkert and Don Rose?
4. In what year did the new Central High School open?
5. Where was the first junior college located in Duluth?
6. Which architect designed Endion School and the old Duluth Public Library?
7. What was the first building erected on the present site of the UMD campus?
8. What religious organization established St. Luke’s Hospital?
9. What was “Jeno’s Erector Set”?
10. A restaurant on Superior Street called Paddy Dorna’s was operated by Paddy. In what other career was Paddy locally famous?
11. Duluth’s first wedding, between Hester Crooks and William Boutwell, took place in what area of Duluth?

Coldsnap on Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Spectrum West”

Photographer John Gregor‘s interview on Wisconsin Public Radio’s “Spectrum West” arts program with Alan Ross is now available for online streaming at wpr.org.

Low on “Fear the Walking Dead”

My heart melts when the softer Low songs play. So when the otherwise mediocre season finale of Fear the Walking Dead included Low’s “Long Way Around the Sea,” I melted.

Way up North, Gay up North

Duluth newscasters Dan Hanger and Edward Moody share their stories of being gay news anchors in Lavender magazine.

Duluth Trivia, March 15 Edition

Below are more questions from a Duluth Trivia Deck I found at Savers.

1. True or false? The fires of 1918 destroyed the Northland Country Club, the Homecroft and Cobb Schools, the Alger-Smith Lumber Yards and approaches to the Interstate Bridge.
2. In what sport did Walter Hoover excel?
3. True of false? The Viking Explorer, the replica of the ship sailed by Leif Erickson, has never sailed.
4. Who planned the Duluth Civic Center?
5. Who dedicated Enger Tower?
6. For how many years was Samuel Frisbee Snively mayor of Duluth?
7. Why was the Hotel Duluth’s Black Bear Lounge so named?
8. What recent year will be the year remembered at the year bears invaded Duluth?
9. What leading proponent of prohibition lectured in Duluth in 1910?
10. What suffragette spoke in Duluth in 1889?
11. What was the title of Nixon’s address in Duluth?

Snowshoeing in Mahtowa

I went snowshoeing in Mahtowa this weekend.

Snowshoes are a gentle miracle of physics. At first it’s disconcerting to walk alongside a tree or a shrub more than a foot above the ground. I’m not supposed to be up here, and my poles are proof of this, as they press deep into the snow to bite the frozen earth.

Human Fabric of Duluth tells powerful story of addiction and recovery

If you’ve not kept up with the Human Fabric of Duluth webseries of photos and stories, you missed this week’s story of inspiration.

Split Rock Review, Issue 10

The new issue of Split Rock Review is out.


The house was built before the end of World War I, finished room by room by my great grandfather after a hard day’s work at Kurth Malting in Milwaukee, where I grew up.

When was a child at the kitchen table doing homework in the 1980s, the house still wasn’t finished. The porch was sinking into the earth, and every spring I climbed beneath to crank the jack that lifted the sagging southwest corner.

There were no handrails on the steep staircase from the first floor to the basement or winding alongside the stairs from the first floor to the attic. Maybe handrails were luxuries they could not afford, or maybe handrails never crossed his mind, the way that he died without ever wearing a seatbelt.

Every day his wife, my great-grandmother, fetched a can of veggies from the root cellar for dinner. Tinned vegetables did not require the cool air of the basement to stay fresh, but old habits died hard. Cans of beets and corn and beans were still stored downstairs.

Duluth Trivia Deck, March 1 Edition

Below are more questions from a Duluth Trivia Deck I found at Savers. I’m not using all the questions in this deck in my series of posts, by the way. Some are clearly dated., e.g. “How many banks are in Duluth?” The answer will no longer be accurate. Also, some are clearly designed to promote a business.

1. How long is the Blatnik Bridge?

2. Who was John A. Blatnik?

3. The actor Tom Price portrayed a popular role in 1985 in Duluth. What part did he play?

4.  How many branch libraries are there in Duluth — at the time this card deck was produced?

5.  Due to a power failure, who was stuck in the Holiday Center glass elevator for one-half hour on October 23, 1985?

6.  Name the person who has been mayor of Duluth, director of the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District, and in the state legislature?

7.  What Duluth mayor came to prominence over a confrontation with a gasoline distribution company?

8.  What was the first name of the Duluth Junior League organization?

Writer Reads … in Ashland and on the Radio

Duluth authors Avesa Rockwell, Lucie Amundsen and other Duluthians I don’t know all read in the annual “Writer’s Read” event at Northland College on Jan. 26.

Avesa’s memoir, Children of the Earth, was selected by judges for its relevance to this year’s theme of “gut instinct.” Her story describes a disturbing incident from her adolescence in New Mexico and the tension between acquiring wisdom and maintaining innocence.

Poems for Chance

Chance: Poems

Tuesday night I attended the publication party and reading for “Chance: Poems,” an anthology of poems edited by Kathleen Roberts in honor of the art installation currently at the Tweed Museum.

Duluth Trivia Deck, Feb. 15 Edition

More from the deck found at Savers …

1. In what year did the U.S. Commerce Dept, designate the Port of Duluth a Foreign Trade Zone?
2. In what year was the $8.5 million Duluth International Airport passenger terminal and industrial park complex completed?
3. In what year was Northland Country Club built?
4. In what year was Wade Stadium dedicated?
5. Who was Sid Peterson?
6. Who were the 1961 Minnesota State High School basketball champions?
7. Who was Bruce Bennett?
8. Who was “Heat Wave” Richard Berler?
9. What was the White City on Park Point?

Theater of All Sorts in the Twin Ports

Sure, all the theater illuminati were at the opening of the NorShor for Mamma Mia. But across the street and down the road, on Friday and on Saturday, other kinds of theater and performance were opening up at Teatro Zuccone and the Underground, and I want to give them a nod.

Circle of Hope Boot Camp

I went to the Circle of Hope Boot Camp at Clyde Iron Works on Saturday Morning.