Bikers banned on Minnesota Landscape Arboretum’s Three-Mile Drive—at least for now

A recent policy change by the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum means that bicyclists are currently banned from the facility’s popular Three-Mile Drive. “In an effort to reduce the amount of traffic on Three-Mile Drive and for visitor safety,” reads the facility’s website, “bicycles are no longer allowed.” (Emphasis in original.)The decision was made “primarily for the safety of everybody who uses the Three-Mile Drive,” Arboretum director Edward L. Schneider told me via telephone. “I was getting a majority of complaints from pedestrians about bicycles whizzing by. We’ve got power walkers, mothers with strollers, older people with walkers, utility carts, cars, circulators—all using the very same Three-Mile Drive.”I also spoke with Steve Sanders, alternative transportation manager with Parking and Transportation Services at the University of Minnesota; the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum is part of the University of Minnesota, but though Sanders told me he recently spoke with Schneider and advised him that in his opinion, “I didn’t think there was a safety issue,” Sanders was not part of the decision-making process regarding the bike ban and had been under the impression it would be rescinded.It will indeed be rescinded, said Schneider—but not in the immediate future. Continue Reading

PHOTO CHALLENGE | Minnesota Fringe Festival 2013

We’re scouting the best photos from the 2013 Minnesota Fringe Festival! Just tag your photo #mnfringe and we’ll look for it on Instagram or Twitter. Also, read our Fringe bloggers’ complete coverage of this year’s festival! (If you don’t see the Storify display below, please refresh your browser.)[<a href=”//storify.com/tcdailyplanet/minnesota-fringe-festival-photos” target=”_blank”>View the story “Minnesota Fringe Festival Photos” on Storify</a>]Coverage of issues and events affecting Central Corridor communities is funded in part by a grant from the Central Corridor Funders Collaborative. Continue Reading

Heidi Arneson’s bloody brilliant “Bloodymerryjammyparty” is a Minnesota Fringe Festival must-see

Bloodymerryjammyparty is probably the only 2013 Minnesota Fringe Festival show that blurbs me on its postcard (“top 10 plays of the year”), so it’s no surprise that I enjoyed this abbreviated adaptation of Heidi Arneson’s 2011 musical about a tweenage sleepover. Seeing this show again, though, reminded me just how really great it is. Do not miss this opportunity to see one of the most compelling pieces of theater I’ve seen in recent years. Continue Reading

“Happy Double Wedding” at the Minnesota Fringe Festival: Orange is the new black tie

How’s this for a disclaimer? Happy Double Wedding is presented by an organization—Dangerous Productions—that my girlfriend has served as a board member. After the August 3 performance, we went out for drinks with one cast member; another cast member audited my sociology class at Macalester last fall. So I won’t review—I’ll just describe. Continue Reading

Selective admission: Dylan Lamb’s “Private School” at the Minnesota Fringe Festival

Private School is a patient show, its five young cast members holding their fire on each line until they see the whites of their opponents’ knee-highs. That gives the production a compelling texture, but unfortunately in the tight space of a Fringe slot the plot just doesn’t have enough time to build the characters these dedicated actors inhabit. Continue Reading

21st century Twin Cities: Four things we need to embrace, and four things we need to fix

A new report by Jay Walljasper, being adapted for publication in MinnPost, argues that the Twin Cities have an identity crisis—that we aren’t selling our many virtues well enough to the rest of the country. Be that as it may, there are also some substantive issues that affect our quality of life and our desirability as a place to relocate. (Update: I wrote this post before reading the rest of Walljasper’s report; the second portion adapted for MinnPost touches on many of the issues I raise below.)If we want to become more prominent as a place for people to visit, live, and work, there are at least four areas we need to embrace and four areas we need to fix. Our fundamentals are sound, but we need to address these areas if we want to continue growing into a major hub of 21st century American life.We need to embrace…• Our diversity. Not only is our public image that of a bunch of Scandahoovians standing at 45 degree angles and talking about the weather, that’s the image too many of us have of ourselves. Continue Reading