North End, South Como in St. Paul looking to renew neighborhoods

The North End/South Como community in Saint Paul has struggled with a disproportionate number of houses and commercial buildings gone vacant, businesses leaving the community, and quality of life issues. In October, the District 6 Planning Council hired CultureBrokers to conduct an analysis of the neighborhood and come up with a community conditions report. Project briefings will be held on the following dates:Tuesday, November 18 – 6:30 p.m. at Abetto’s, 560 Como AvenueMonday, November 24 – 7:30 a.m. at North End Elementary School, 27 Geranium For more information, call the District 6 Planning Council office at 651-488-4485
Lisa Tabor, from CultureBrokers spoke at the October 28 meeting of the District 6 Land Use Committee. She said that her company will gather resources by collecting demographic information and conducting personal interviews with people in the community. Residents will be involved in coming up with an action plan to create a sustainable community. Continue Reading

St. Paul PeeWee Baseball team–then and now

Then, they were in sixth grade and played PeeWee baseball in 1955 at Scheffer playground in Saint Paul. Now, 53 years later they still get together every couple of months or so for breakfast at the Coffee Cup on Rice Street. Dick Miller, Jay Allen, Jerry Sinna and John Brodrick attended the old Scheffer grade school, while Bill Braeker and Derrill Lambert went to St. Adalbert’s. All lived near the playground and came together to play under the late Coach Joe Sullivan. Continue Reading

A treat for all seasons

It’s fall and there’s a chill in the air, but that doesn’t stop North Enders from stopping by Dar’s Double Scoop Ice Cream Shop at 1046 Rice Street at Cook in Saint Paul . In the spirit of the season, owner Kevin Barrett is now offering pumpkin ice cream along with the 44 other flavors. Barrett says “Every night is a good night for ice cream.”
Erica Whitaker is a regular at Dar’s. She lives in the neighborhood and stops in on her way home from work at Regions Hospital. She says she grew up in Missouri, and can only find her favorite Black Walnut ice cream at Dar’s. Continue Reading

Community round-up

Some shorter stories from around the Twin Cities metro area describe tonight’s transportation summit in Northeast Minneapolis, Facing Race – a new conversation on race and racism, which will take place Thursday, October 16 in the Payne-Phalen neighborhood in St. Paul, Garrison Keillor’s talk at the University of Minnesota last night, and a new playground at Lewis Park in St. Paul at Wayzata and Marion Streets. Continue Reading

Facing Race: A new conversation on race and racism in St. Paul

Facing Race: A new conversation on Race and Racismby Mary Thoemke, TC Daily PlanetFacing the issue of race is not an easy thing to do. Talking about race and racism can be the first step in breaking down long-held barriers to understanding . In an effort to begin a new conversation, the Payne Phalen District 5 Planning Council invites the community to join them in a dialogue: Facing Race – We’re all in this together. Facing Race will be held on Thursday, October 16, from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.. at First Covenant Church at 1280 Arcade Street . Continue Reading

Halloween House – “It’s just so much fun”

Every holiday is special at Monica Muckala’s house in the North End neighborhood of Saint Paul. So special, in fact, that she decorates the whole house, inside and out, for every holiday, including Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, St. Valentine’s Day, St. Urho’s Day (Muckala’s late husband, Russell, was Finnish), St. Patrick’s Day, and Easter. Continue Reading

Community round-up

Some shorter stories from around the Twin Cities metro area describe a new block club sparked by a rash of burglaries in St. Paul, and two October 11 events: the Linden Hills Good Energy fair and Oktoberfest in St. Paul bringing everything from bratwurst and beer to bed races. Continue Reading

German food, music and more

German immigrants were among the first settlers in the North End neighborhood and Saint Paul’s Oktoberfest honors that heritage. This year’s Oktoberfest is on Saturday, October 11, from noon to 11 p.m. at Rice Street and Geranium Avenue. German foods, including sauerkraut and brats, apple strudel and Black Forest chocolate cake, German beer and Riesling wine will be featured at the 8th annual event. Admission to the grounds for the family friendly event is free. Most activities take place indoors in a climate controlled setting. Continue Reading

New playground at Lewis Park

Last week neighborhood families celebrated the dedication of a new tot lot at Lewis Park located at Wayzata and Marion Streets in Saint Paul’s North End. The new playground is on the grounds of the Lewis Park apartments, which is a totally accessible building. A design team made up of residents of the building created a wish list for the playground equipment. Then they got together with city parks and recreation designers to come up with the best type of equipment, ground cover, and lighting for the playground. “The surface and equipment provides accessibility for everyone,” according to Bryan Murphy, a landscape designer with Saint Paul Parks and Recreation. Continue Reading

This week’s community round-up

Some shorter stories from around the Twin Cities metro area: It was back to the 60s when the Coen brothers came to Rice Street / A less-welcome visitor hit the streets of Seward, spray can in hand in the early-morning hours of September 27 // Roger Bromander is the new executive director at the Union Park District Planning Council 13 in Saint Paul. Continue Reading