On Tuesday, August 25, 80 people gathered at Olson Townhomes to participate in the North Minneapolis Laotian Garden Tour. Laotian gardeners led neighbors and fellow gardeners through dense rows of long beans, hot peppers, Vietnamese mint, cucumbers and tomatoes. Channel 5 and channel 11 also came. After the tour participants enjoyed delicious kou pun curry made with vegetables harvested from the garden
The garden tour was organized to highlight the importance of the garden to the Laotian community. The Laotians hope to be able to preserve the garden even when the construction of the Bottineau LRT and related development comes.
Marie Egbujor opened Paradise Beauty Salon in North Minneapolis’ 919 West Broadway in November of 2009. Originally from Haiti, she cherished the opportunity to run her own business. Marie chose the location on West Broadway because of the affordable rent and diverse environment. She soon grew to love the community of clients and neighbors and maintained good relationships with the businesses next door. Nader Abuammo of Brix Meat and Grocery helped clear the snow for her in the winter. Continue Reading
Although it was mainly a plot to cool out radical activism, Labor Day is widely remembered as a celebration of the successful fight for the eight-hour day. Yet, while we’re approaching the United States’ 121st official Labor Day, it is now impossible for low-wage Minnesota workers to support their families while working only eight hours a day. Anthony Shields, a young community organizer with the workers rights campaign at Neighborhoods Organizing for Change (NOC), remembers the struggles his single mother faced working two full time jobs. “I would only see my mother for five hours a day, and between those five hours, she was exhausted and trying to get some rest, just because her one full time job wasn’t enough for food, not enough for the rent, and not enough for clothes on our backs,” he said. “In retrospect I’m like wow, you hold resentment towards your parents or your family because of certain situations, but now when you peel back the layers, it’s the system of the economics, and my entire family is affected by it.”
This system of economic inequality and the struggles that Shields’ mother and over 220,000 minimum wage workers in the Twin Cities metro area face today, along with how activists across the country and in the Twin Cities are fighting for fair wages and schedules, remind local labor historian, Peter Rachleff, of the 1886 fight for the eight-hour day. Continue Reading
Kwe.Strong, a group founded by Native women for Native women, creates community while increasing strength and endurance. They’re holding their fourth triathlon at Thomas Beach on Saturday, August 22. In this triathlon, women run or walk a five-mile or 10-mile distance, bike nine miles and canoe across Mde Maka Ska, or Lake Calhoun.
When the women cross the finish line, they see the Ojibwe word “Mino-bimaadiziwin,” which means, “Live a good life.” Hear two of the co-founders talk about event and why they feel it’s important. Click here to see the video Continue Reading
From Cedar to Chicago Avenue..sweltering humidity or not, folks showed up for another summer edition of Open Streets. This time the spotlight was on Franklin Avenue-home to the largest population of urban Native Americans in the country. Franklin Avenue is also home to one of the oldest libraries in the city and many Somali and East African folks. Open Streets brought them all together for a day of bicycling and walking down one of the most diverse places in the city. See for yourself… Continue Reading
Since 1937, Columbus Day has been recognized as a national holiday. On August 12th, St. Paul becomes the sixth city in the United States to swap that holiday for Indigenous People’s Day. This marks the beginning of a hard fought effort to heal a deep wound at the heart of this nation. The resolution was sponsored by Ward One Council member Dai Thao and sailed through council chambers on a seven-zero vote. Members of the Native American community and the Saint Paul Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission drafted the original document. Continue Reading
Have you noticed the bronze statue in Plaza Centenario, the pocket park at the corner of 12th Avenue and Lake Street? The statue of General Emiliano Zapata, a hero to many Mexicans and a leader who fought for rights for peasants in the Mexican Revolution, was a gift to Minneapolis from the Mexican state of Morelos and installed here in 2013. Amid much fanfare, it finally became official. Latinos Unidos por la Cultura y el Arte (LUCA) hosted the unveiling of a dedication on the statue at last Sunday’s Open Streets event on Lake Street. Spectators participated in a celebration of General Emiliano Zapata and of this new community pocket plaza with speeches from the many community and government agencies that worked hard to bring the statue to this spot on Lake Street. Continue Reading
For the past five years, Minneapolis streets in summertime are turned into walkways, bike lanes and a place to enjoy community. East Lake Street last Sunday was no exception. It’s one of the most diverse streets in the city, and that spirit came out in force during Open Streets. If you missed it, here’s a photo sampling of the day.
In anticipation of the 10th Anniversary FLOW Northside Arts Crawl, FLOW’s artist liaison, Farrington Llewellyn asked three North Minneapolis artists, Why is FLOW important to you? Kenna Camara Cottman: Why FLOW Is Important from North MPLS. Watch Kenna also speak about FLOW 2015. Ms. Naima: Keep Flowing from North MPLS. Elder Naima Richmond, poet, storyteller, author, has more to say about FLOW. Continue Reading
On July 4, 2015, dozens of people rode bicycles to Lake Calhoun to confront the legacy of white supremacy that symbolizes South Minneapolis. The confrontation turned out to be more than historical. Continue Reading