Merrlam Park Neighborhood News and Events

UNION PARK - comprised of Merriam Park, Snelling Hamline and Lexington-Hamline neighborhoods, is one of 17 neighborhood districts in Saint Paul. In 2007, the Merriam Park, Snelling Hamline, and Lexington-Hamline Community Councils merged into one organization to represent all residents of Union Park, hence the name, Union Park District Council (UPDC). (Information from UPDC website)

For detailed demographic information, see the neighborhood profile from Minnesota Compass.

MUSIC REVIEW | Turf Club reopens with Erik Koskinen, Frankie Lee, Dead Man Winter and Cactus Blossoms

Photos by Ann Treacy

Everyone in St Paul breathed a sigh of returned cool Thursday night when the Turf Club reopened after a summer of renovations. It was a sold out show featuring Dead Man Winter, Frankie Lee, Erik Koskinen and a surprise appearance from The Cactus Blossoms, which wasn't a shock but sure was pleasant. Much as I like all four bands, the club was the star last night.


THEATER REVIEW | Skylark Opera's "Candide" at the E. M. Pearson Theatre: A loss for words

Photo credit John Engstrom

The E. M. Pearson Theatre at Concordia University is a fine space for many things. Within its walls, a modest pit orchestra sounds much larger than its actual size, musical airs have space to resonate in without becoming muddied or lost, and actors can use its size to play and emote both large and small. The theater does, however, make special demands in the area of vocal diction–and its curtains unforgivingly swallow ending consonants when appropriate efforts have not been made. This acoustical property was unfortunately audible on Saturday, June 14 when Skylark Opera opened its new production of Candide. There was so much great music being sung well that it would have been lovely to understand more of the words.


Abundant Bistro chef’s latest challenge: Getting Arnellia’s on track as trains begin to run

Chef Jackie Williams

Arnellia Allen and Jackie Williams can boast several "firsts" and "onlies" between them. Allen is the only African American woman to own a nightclub and hold a liquor license in Minnesota. Jackie Williams was one of the first African American women to graduate from the highly competitive and demanding Chef Apprentice Program at Pennsylvania's Allegheny Community College in the 1980s. (There were very few black men admitted either.) Now the two women are together on University Avenue in St. Paul, working to put business at Arenellia's Night Club back on track just as light rail trains are set to start running.


MUSIC REVIEW | Frankie Lee at the Longfellow Grill: Spend the summer with beer and local bands

Frankie Lee at The Longfellow Grill. Photo credit Aine O'Donnell.

Here’s a really good idea – celebrate the long-awaited Minnesota summer with afternoons of beer tasting and bands on patios. We have a good start going: The Current and Schell’s have partnered up to create a special beer. To debut that beer, the Current planned three afternoons with good beer and good music at local bars and restaurants.


MUSIC REVIEW | Turf Club becomes an 80's dance club with Small Black

Small Black at the Turf Club

I’ve never seen the Turf Club as a dance club before but that changed Saturday night when I went to see Small Black. They had a whole dance scene set up: smoke machines, bright oscillating lights and a stage full of musicians. It was like shrinking an arena show from the 1980s just for the Twin from the Cities. It reminded me of seeing the Stone Roses at an outdoor show two summers ago – easy breezy.