5/6/08 Headlines: West End pride, NWA’s broken promises, Seward graffiti art, Bhutan refugees



West End neighborhood pride
by Mary Thoemke, TC Daily Planet
The West End of Saint Paul has always been a solid working class community with a strong sense of neighborhood pride. Over the years that pride was bruised as the neighborhood changed and residents moved away, leaving the West End as a place to pass though rather than a place to be. Population patterns changed as Interstate 35E was cut through the neighborhood in the 1970s causing the permanent loss of many homes.

A promise is a promise
by Craig Green, Session Weekly
When Northwest Airlines was in financial trouble, the Metropolitan Airports Commission and the state helped the airline make it through. The airline kept going; the state got a promise of jobs.

But now that the airline is close to a merger — a deal that would dramatically change its presence in the state — everything is not so clear.

Looking back to move forward: the rise and fall of the Seward neighborhood graffiti art project
by Justin Schell, MN Artists
In the video for Brother Ali’s “Take me Home,”a suited Ali and his DJ, BK-One, walk past brilliantly multi-colored graffiti. John Grider’s Billygoat peers out from behind them while hues of kids skateboard, skip rope, and play basketball. This brief clip takes place in front of the old Riverside Market, soon to be replaced by the new Seward Co-op. The momentary harmony of the scene in Ali’s video—where business suits, neighborhood children and parents, and graffiti all co-exist peacefully—actually masks one of the more fraught chapters in the history of Twin Cities’ public art, as well as the history of Twin Cities graffiti, both in its quality and its consequences.

The other face of Bhutan: a report on the latest refugee arrivals in the U.S.
As news media heightens awareness in the Western world of human rights violations in China, Tibet, and Burma, one country’s record seems to have managed to stay hidden, the Himalayan Kingdom of Bhutan.


A little-used tool in the toolbox
by Brenda van Dyck, Session Weekly
Confronted with a projected $935 million biennial budget deficit projected from the February Economic Forecast, legislative leaders and the governor are trying to work out a budget solution. But the governor doesn’t have to wait for the Legislature to solve the deficit; he can use a little-used tool called unallotment to balance the budget.

Music note: Kate Nash, more than cute
by Jay Gabler, TC Daily Planet
A family act featuring a keyboard-pounding dad, a tambourine-slapping mom, and a 14-year-old daughter on drums? Cute. A 20-year-old British redhead in platform heels who coos lyrics about beautiful birds in front of a pink neon sign bearing her name? Cuter. An encore uniting the two acts for a rendition of the Supremes’ “Baby Love”? Cutest!

LCN partners with Twins to increase Spanish-language broadcasts
by Katie Anderson, TC Daily Planet
In 2008, the Twins will double the number of Spanish-language game broadcasts from last season and work with a new partner, Latino Communications Network (LCN), to provide Spanish-language access to the baseball season for the Latino community of Minnesota.

An unwelcoming message
by Staff, Minnesota Daily
Last week, the Federal Register announced plans to increase prices for visa applications. Those wanting to apply for academic or vocational visas will have to pay up to $200, up from $100, starting Oct. 1. The program seeks to increase the fees by also charging schools that admit foreign students. As educational standards have risen worldwide and American tuition continues to skyrocket, the government should be finding new ways to attract – not detract – foreign talent to our schools.


Third places
by Dave Healy, Park Bugle
What’s a quick way to take the pulse of a town or neighborhood? Travelers from John Steinbeck (“Travels with Charley”) to William Least Heat Moon (“Blue Highways”), along with a host of candidates for public office, have found that there are few better places to get a feel for an area than a local café.


RIFT rises: Twin Cities culture sites to launch newspaper
by Paul Schmelzer, Eyeteeth
Print news is in such famously bad shape that Advertising Age is running “The Newspaper Death Watch,” which quotes an expert who gives an industry in “terminal decline” 20 to 25 years to live. In this context, it’s noteworthy when any publication decides to launch a pulp version: This week the Twin Cities culture magazine Rift, which ditched its print version not long ago for a web-only enterprise, announced that it’ll start producing a “newspaper style guide” to goings-on in the area. It’ll launch May 17 with a print run of 10,000 copies, which will be available at coffeeshops and stores.