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“World’s Smallest Record Store” opens in Bovey

Business North reports Tim “Edwards” Verthein, morning host and chief engineer at 1320 AM KOZY radio in Grand Rapids, has opened a new record shop in Bovey, about 80 miles northwest of Duluth. The occasional store opened on April 22 in recognition of Record Store Day.

The Business North story notes Edwards launched his own radio station three years ago and is using the same 8-by-10-foot storefront to retail his collection of 40,000 records. He calls it “The World’s Smallest Record Store” or KEBS Records and Radio.

The Dames – “Head of State”

Here’s another selection from this year’s Homegrown Music Video Festival. The song is from an upcoming release of rarities by the Dames, scheduled to drop with the fall leaves. The video is by Brian Barber.

Gopher Lounge Photos Circa 1995

Take a step back in time and view some of the friendly faces at West Duluth’s Gopher Lounge during the mid 1990s. Some of these folks are long departed; others still prowl the area of Ramsey Street and Central Avenue in search of porcupine meatballs.

Tour Duluth MakerSpace with The PlayList

The April 27 episode of WDSE-TV‘s The PlayList features this segment with host Karen Sunderman getting a guided tour of Duluth MakerSpace from Miranda Durbin, a shop manager.

The Black Labels – “Sex Train”

One of the seven videos in the Homegrown Music Video Festival is this piece featuring archival footage of the Black Labels performing at Duluth’s Red Lion Lounge at least 10 years ago. The bar closed in 2007 and the space was repurposed for the Zeitgeist Arts Café. The video was edited by Emily Norton.

Video Archive: Paul Connolly cuts a 2007 Homegrown promo

Ten years ago the Homegrown Music Festival was in its ninth year — second year as a nonprofit. Don Ness was festival director at the time, but steering committee member Paul Connolly was called on to make an appearance on WDSE-TV’s Almanac North to talk with hosts Julie Zenner and Eric Olson. Connolly went on to serve as festival director for the 2008 and 2009 festivals.

Following the conversation, the band Cars & Trucks performs “Over the Moon.”

Duluth Rideshare Board?

Would Perfect Duluth Day be interested in hosting a rideshare board for trips that go beyond the bounds of Duluth (like to the Twin Cities and back, etc.)? It would sure be helpful for one-car or no-car families that have to travel regularly. The UMD Ride Share board is great and shows the concept works, but I’m not a university student and it feels kinda weird showing up for a ride as a middle-aged person when the driver expects a student. And then there’s the summer.

Annual Duluth-area beer production hits one million gallons

At the end of 2016 there were seven craft breweries in Duluth and nine more across the region. Another six are in the planning or soon-to-open stages in 2017. In the two years since Perfect Duluth Day conducted its first tally of the region’s beer production the total barrel output has grown from roughly 20,000 to nearly 35,000. That equates to more than one million gallons of craft beer locally brewed in 2016. By other measurements, it’s about 70,000 kegs, more than 8 million pints or more than 11 million 12-ounce bottles and cans.

The largest contributors to the recent growth were Bent Paddle Brewing and Castle Danger Brewing. Bent Paddle doubled its output over the past two years while Castle Danger grew six fold. Meanwhile, Moose Lake Brewing launched operations, Blacklist Artisan Ales opened a taproom and started canning, and South Shore Brewery opened an additional brewery and tasting room in Washburn.

In the year ahead, the brewing landscape is set to shift dramatically with the opening of a half-dozen new operations in the region. Newbies in the immediate Twin Ports area will be Hoops Brewing in Canal Park, Oakhold Farmhouse Brewery in Midway Township and Earth Rider in Superior. The Iron Range, home to only one brewing business in 2016 — the Boathouse in Ely — could soon welcome three more. Rapids Brewing Company and Cantankerous Brewing are in the works for Grand Rapids, while Boomtown Brewery plans to open at the former Zimmy’s Bar and Restaurant location in Hibbing.

Below is a breakdown of the 2016 stats.
 

Bent Paddle BrewingBent Paddle Brewing
30-barrel brewery and taproom, founded in 2013
1912 W. Michigan St., Duluth
Colin & Laura Mullen + Bryon & Karen Tonnis, co-founders; Charles Brodell, head brewer; Brent Rowe, regional sales manager; Pepin Young, taproom manager
2016 production: 15,700 barrels 

Castle-Danger-BreweryCastle Danger Brewery
30-barrel brewery and taproom; brewery founded in 2011, taproom opened in 2014
17 Seventh St., Two Harbors
Clint and Jamie MacFarlane, owners; Lon and Mandy Larson, owners
2016 production: 9,200 barrels (est. for 2017: 14,000 bbl)

Fitger's BrewhouseFitger’s Brewhouse
10-barrel brewery supplying six pubs and a retail store, founded in 1995
600 E. Superior St., Duluth
Rod Raymond, owner; Ted Briggs, master brewer
2016 production: 1,862 barrels

A Spring Dance on the Pier in Duluth

Dancer Logan Moniot of Lake Nebagamon is featured in this new music video shot by Jasper Meddock Productions. The song is “Die Trying” by Michl. In the video, Moniot dances along the lighthouse pier in Duluth as if it’s not even cold out.

Homegrown Music Festival 2017 Primer

If this isn’t your 19th time attending the Homegrown Music Festival, here are some links that might be helpful:

Homegrown website
Homegrown schedule
PDD Chicken App schedule for smartphones
Homegrown Facebook page
Homegrown Twitter page
Seasons 1-4 of Seth Langreck’s Duluth Band Profiles

Admission wristbands are $30 for the full eight days of music, but there are also many free-admission events.

There are 199 bands on the schedule. A 100-page Field Guide is available to help navigate the festival. Pick one up at any Homegrown venue or various random locations.

The hashtag for this year is #hgmf17. The same hashtag applies for Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Flickr, etc.

This is the first Homegrown in which a ridesharing service is available. The Lyft app has been functioning in Duluth since April 27.

PDD Quiz: April 2017

Duluth SchoolAnother perfect Duluth April is in the books. Take the quiz to see how much you remember about this month’s happenings!

The next PDD Quiz, on zoo history, will be published on May 14. E-mail question suggestions to Alison Klawiter at [email protected] by May 11.

Duluth is the best something or other of 2014 or ever

Remember back in 2014 when Outside magazine named Duluth the “Best Town Ever”? It’s referenced in a new story in the Minneapolis Star Tribune:

How Duluth became the outdoor capital of the Midwest

But what exactly was Duluth named by Outside magazine? The headline of the 2014 article calls Duluth the “Best Town in America.” But then the subhead calls it the “Best Town Ever.”

The online poll referred to the contest as ““Best Towns 2014.” Outside also published a countdown article of “The 16 Best Places to Live in the U.S.: 2014,” listing Duluth as #1.

Destination Duluth often referred to the online poll as “Best Outside City,” while at same time using a graphic referring to it as the “Best Place to Live.” Both MPR News and the Star Tribune reported in 2014 that Duluth won the “Best Outdoors Town” poll.

The only conclusion one can draw from all this is that Duluth is the Best Outside or Outdoors City or Town to Live in or in General Throughout the Midwest and America or the World in 2014 and Forever.

The Large Hadron Collider, or, I Have Never Met Father John Misty, Irrespective of What This Essay Might Imply

I’ve had a rough couple of years. My dad got sick, then my husband got sick, and I became a lot more curious about the nature of being than I was before. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about the Large Hadron Collider. In case you are not also wedged firmly between a rock and a firm location, devouring particle physics literature like a Kardashian hoarding Us Weekly, the Large Hadron Collider is the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator. It’s the largest single machine in existence, built in collaboration with more than 10,000 scientists and engineers from around the world.

Maybe I have felt, over the past two years or so, a little sympathetic to the lead electron at the nose of that high-speed electron beam, roaring around an accelerator ring at nearly light speed, every lap incrementally nudging closer to a head-on collision with an opposing electron beam, traveling at equal speed. But, less dramatically, I’ve been thinking more about what scientists have found.

The intent of the Large Hadron Collider is to investigate the structure of the atomic nucleus. (I copied that from the LHC website). But it’s been doing more than that. Like any scientific investigation of the unknown, it has the potential to change everything by altering our perception of the nature of stuff. If, for example, the LHC reveals that energy becomes matter in describable and predictable circumstances, or becomes matter by describable and predictable mechanisms, it would radically change how we see the universe. It’s literally an infinitesimally tiny change, but it would be a boundless change, philosophically.

A double dose of the Little Black Books

Former Duluth rawk and/or roller Mark Lindquist has released two new videos — “They’re Never Wrong” and “Fading Captain” — to promote his band the Little Black Books‘ midnight gig on May 5 at Rex Bar during the Homegrown Music Festival. In recent years Lindquist has lived in Crow Wing County, near the geographical center of Minnesota, so Duluth gigs have been rare. He plans to reunite with drummer Jim Hagstrom and guitarist Bob Olson for this year’s Homegrown show.

Selective Focus: Dann Matthews

SF-Teaser-DannMathews

Dann Matthews is a designer and illustrator who blends pop-culture knowledge, humor and sharp skills into a mashed-up style for print, product design and more.

D.M.: Most of my work is digital. I’ll sketch and scan an illustration and finish the piece in either Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator. I have done a ton of designs prepped for screen printing, so I’m most at home in Illustrator. I started designing tees for Threadless.com’s ongoing T-shirt design competition back in 2005. It became my hobby, then my obsession, then my side-hustle. I would usually create 4-6 designs a week and never use two of them for anything.