Today in the Daily Planet, 11/23/07



“Sisters playing sports: Muslim women’s modest exercise”:
by Kate Havelin, TC Daily Planet
Nadia Huq grew up playing outside with her brother and other Apple Valley kids. ‘I played football, soccer, kickball, basketball—whatever the neighborhood was doing. And I loved it,’ she said. At age fifteen, Huq chose to begin wearing the hijab, the traditional modest Muslim dress.

“Department of Health pilot project would test children for arsenic”:
by Jeremy Stratton, The Bridge
Proposal to be presented at Dec. 6 public meeting

“Kissing our ashes goodbye”:
by Tom Elko, Minnesota Monitor
Minnesota’s ash trees are as good as gone. That’s the sentiment of four Olmsted County officials, who are proposing the county start its own tree farm in preparation for the arrival of the hated Emerald Ash Borer in Minnesota and the subsequent disappearance of the ash. The argument is that the ash trees will, sooner or later, have to be replaced and that rather than paying a nursery $100 for a new sapling, the county could save a lot of money by growing its own.


Food and restaurants

“Karaoke night at Pancho Villa”:
by Jeremy Iggers, Breaking Bread/The Rake
It’s Thursday night at Pancho Villa on Eat Street, and the joint is jumping. The Mexican restaurant on Eat Street has karaoke four nights a week, but Thursday night is contest night, and more than a dozen singers are lined up to compete. The prizes in tonight’s semi-final round are small stuff –a bottle of wine, a gift certificate, but the singers who make it to the finals on December 6 will be competing for a top prize of $1000; plus CD recordings of their performances and other prizes.

“The elusive Hmong cuisine”:
by Phyllis Louise Harris, Asian Pages
Despite the fact that Minnesota has more than 100,000 Hmong residents, finding examples of Hmong cooking is not easy. With a long tradition of oral history, cookbooks featuring Hmong food are rare and only a few Hmong restaurants have survived in this area.

“Heksher Tzedek campaign”:
by Hilary Johnson, KFAI
A Mendota Heights rabbi is leading a national campaign to create a new kind of kosher certification, one that is concerned with corporate ethics. Allen was faced with a contradiction at a meat packing plant that supplies meat to the Twin Cities Jewish Community. He then began the process of the heksher tzedek or justice certification. He believes it could affect the larger food system.


“Not ready for pasture (NRP)”:
by Jeremy Stratton, The Bridge
Since its inception, the Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP) has been the backbone of citizen participation in Minneapolis; it created or bolstered neighborhood organizations, charging citizens with the responsibility to decide when, where and how to spend hundreds of millions of dollars on housing and civic improvements, programming and staff. With this grand experiment, the city put its money where its mouth is, creating the bedrock of community engagement in Minneapolis.


“Remarkable report on reading”:
by Joe Nathan, School Talk