Victoria Theater

Reviving Frogtown’s Victoria Theater for diverse community

Along the Green Line, just east of Victoria Street and University Avenue, stands a seemingly abandoned storefront with dark windows and a locked door. But to Denise Mwasyeba, a 25-year Frogtown resident and former chair of the Frogtown Neighborhood Association (FNA) board of directors, it’s the perfect chance to turn the forgotten, historical Victoria theater into a newly renovated center that represents a diverse community greatly evolving from its roots. Continue Reading

On Valentine’s Day, Minnesotans rally for equal marriage

About 2000 people gathered in Saint Paul on Valentine’s Day to advocate legalizing same-sex marriage. The faith-led event opened with a 150-person clergy procession, followed by faith leaders, House and Senate members speaking to the diverse crowd.February 14 was the symbolic date for the Freedom to Marry Day Rally because “Valentine’s day is a time that you celebrate people you love and that sort of commitment to relationships in your life, and that’s the reason we’re pushing to change state law this year,” said Jake Loesch, communications director for Minnesotans United for All Families.FULL DISCLOSURE: Katie Maren volunteered with Minnesotans United in 2012.Last November, the proposed amendment to define marriage in the state’s constitution as between one man and one woman was voted down by 53 percent to 47 percent.“Faith is divided on this,” said Loesch, but “We would not have been able to defeat the amendment last year without faithful, religious Minnesotans, clergy members and churches.”Thomas Spargo and Sienna Schuth holding their handmade signs outside the Capitol rotunda Various church groups showed support inside the Capitol rotunda, such as United Methodist, White Bear Unitarian Universalist and United Church of Christ New Brighton. Rev. MacArthur Flournoy, Human Rights Campaign Deputy Director of religion and faith programs said, “There can be no better day than today, a day where we celebrate love, that we can stand on the principles of faith, justice, and equality.” Rabbi Melissa Simon of south Minneapolis Shir Tikvah Congregation said, “In the eyes of Judaism, marriage brings couples closer to our heritage and traditions of our faith.”But not all groups, religious or non-religious feel this way.Marriage for Minnesota recently posted on their Facebook page saying, “Marriage isn’t a ‘love license’ from the state! It’s about a PERSONAL promise with a PUBLIC purpose that benefits everyone–especially kids, parents, and our state’s economy!”Although the amendment was defeated, maybe not all who voted against it are necessarily ready for extreme reform.KSTP and Survey USA polled 500 Minnesota adults through a recorded voice server on telephone and electronic device questionnaires Feb. 1-5, asking if the state marriage law should be changed allowing same-sex couples to marry. Continue Reading