Parent Aware rates childcare programs in St. Paul and statewide

Looking for childcare in St. Paul? Parent Aware has rated 83 childcare programs, assigning one to four stars to each. The map below shows all of the centers, ratings, and contact information. A pilot program started in 2007 and adopted by the state of Minnesota in 2011, the Parent Aware Child Care Rating System provides parents with resources to make informed choices about childcare options in their local communities. 

Continue Reading

Little Free Libraries: Merriam Park

Out of the 3,000 Little Free Libraries worldwide, more than one hundred dot the front yards of Saint Paul residents. An initiative started in 2009, Little Free Libraries are a community movement that offers free books housed in small, outdoor bookshelves to members of the local community. “I chose to have a little free library because it connects me with the community,” Little Free Library owner Mary Sorlie says, “and there really is something wonderful about sharing a great book.” For more information on Little Free Libraries (and a map of all their locations) visit their website at is one of a number of articles produced by students at Macalester as part of a New Media class.Coverage of issues and events that affect Central Corridor neighborhoods and communities is funded in part by a grant from Central Corridor Funders Collaborative. Continue Reading

Many landlords take active role in St. Paul’s Union Park neighborhood

Densely populated with rental properties, St. Paul’s Union Park neighborhood is often home to clashes between homeowners, tenants, and landlords. Some landlords have taken an active role in the neighborhood, and many residents see the involvement as important in defusing tensions.“When I moved into my home,” Union Park resident Carole Chabries says, “one of the first people to knock on my door was the landlord of the property next door. He gave me his name and number and said to contact him if the kids next door gave us any trouble.”Chabries’ experience is not unique. “One of my properties is almost right next door,” landlord Teri Breton says, “These are my neighbors, too, and I want to make sure we have a good and safe environment.”Landlord and twenty-year resident of Union Park, Ken Fowlds takes a similar approach with his properties, “I live on a block where I’m surrounded by student rentals so I am aware of the pitfalls. Continue Reading

Saint Paul’s Union Park still coming to terms with student housing ordinance

Bordering the University of St. Thomas campus, Union Park has sometimes been defined as a “UST neighborhood,” but that could change due to the recently passed Saint Paul student housing ordinance. Going into effect last June, the student housing ordinance requires that any new student rentals within a certain area must be at least 150 feet away from other rentals.“When I moved into my house in 1984, the local colleges were assets to the neighborhood,” resident Carrie Daklin said. “St. Kate’s and Macalester still are, but recently it just feels like St. Thomas has overrun us.” A St. Continue Reading