150 years of Central

Year-long events mark Central High School 150th anniversary

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

150 years of CentralThe Central High School transformation project (see story on page 1) coincides with the school’s 150th-anniversary celebration.

The kick-off for the 150th year began with the Rondo parade in July. The grand marshal was Mary Mackbee, who has been the Central High School Principal since 1993. The event coincided with the birthday of alumni Philando Castile, who was killed by a Falcon Heights policeman just ten days before.

The final event will be the Grand Old Day parade on June 4, 2017.

A grand opening/ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 6 marked the start of the new school year and celebrated the new plaza and walkway.

Lieutenant Governor  Tina Smith and Mayor Christ Coleman attended the ribbon-cutting ceremony and declared that day “Saint Paul Central High School Day.” Also present were notable guest speaker alums, Central’s pep band, and the senior class.

Other upcoming events:
• Sept. 30—1,000th football game (vs. North at North) and Alumni Reception at O’Gara’s from 6-9pm.
• Oct. 7—Homecoming game vs. Washburn at Griffin and Alumni Halftime show. Pre-game activities start at 7pm.
• Music series (winter/spring)—Central alumni performers (dates TBA)
• Central Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony—spring 2017 (date TBA)
• June 4, 2017—Grand Old Day Parade (Central contingent will be marching.)

“Together, we look forward to celebrating Central’s 150 anniversary, its legacy, and what’s to come,” said Maggie O’Reilly, who has two children at Central and serves on the Transforming Central Committee. “It’s a wonderful, uplifting tribute and a positive, exciting time for Central. Personally, I couldn’t be more proud to have my kids at Central. It’s truly a dynamic, diverse and community-oriented school that is loved by many.”

Banners and books
Five new light pole banners have been installed in front of the school along Marshall Ave. celebrating the school’s last 150 years with photos. Central parent Katie Parke-Reimer designed the banners.

Sharing the historic nature of the school is one of the ways the Transforming Central project hoped to build connections and pride in the community, but a complete historic narrative was needed.

A History Project subcommittee was formed and includes members include Deb Ahlquist, Beth Black, Amber Buckner, Lisa Heyman, Paul Hillmer, Ann Hobbie, Ann Malm, Dawn Lampros and Ayesha Shar.

With the help of a Legacy Grant from the Minnesota Historical Society, Bluestem Heritage Group was hired to write a 20-40 page narrative of the school.
Finding an abundance of historical documents and sources, the work has grown to much more—a full and rich document with surprises and insight. No other high school in the state of Minnesota has the comprehensive, documented and successful 150-year history of St. Paul Central High School.

The book will be sold throughout the year.

The committee is also making plans and seeking funds for a historical exhibit, installation, or other interpretive piece. Parents, staff, and alumni are invited to get involved in the history project by contacting Deb at transformingcentral@gmail.com.

Notable alum who have graduated from Central including Amelia Earhart, Charles Schulz, Richard Schulze (founder of Best Buy), Stacy Robinson, Dave Winfield, Jawed Karim (co-founder of YouTube), and local politicians Chris Tolbert and Melvin Carter.

“I have too many fond memories to list, but the school was always fun and diverse,” remarked 2003 alumni Adrian Perryman. “I enjoyed my time in class and in the various extra-curricular activities that I was able to take part in. I was able to get a great education in class and outside of it.”

“Central is a microcosm of America—the world,” said St. Paul Council Member and Assistant Hennepin County Attorney Chris Tolbert, who graduated in 2001. “Without opening a book, Central is the best preparation for living and succeeding in a diverse world, because Central is that diverse world.”

A short history of Central
Central High School was founded in 1866 in response to student requests. Prior to 1866, there were no educational opportunities in St. Paul beyond elementary school. About a dozen students wished to continue their schooling, so two rooms were set aside for the “High School” on the 3rd floor of the Franklin School, located at Broadway and Tenth streets in downtown St. Paul, and the “St. Paul High School” was formed.

The school hosted a dozen students and one lone teacher.

The first graduating class was in 1870 and consisted of two students: one boy and one girl. The girl’s name was Fannie Haynes (the daughter of the teacher), and the boy’s name was A.P. Warren. The first two diplomas were hand printed on sheepskin.

Gradually, the classes enrolled in the Franklin building became too large for the school to accommodate them, so in 1872, the high school moved to the Lindeke Building at 7th and Jackson St. where it occupied the entire 2nd floor.

By 1879, the teaching staff had increased to 8 teachers and principal. The hours were from 9 to 12 in the morning and 1 to 4 in the afternoon. A 15-minute recess was offered in the morning or afternoon.

That year the Lindeke building at 7th and Jackson was finally determined to be ill-suited for a high school. The first floor of the building was occupied by a dry goods store and a fresh fish market. In the warm weather, the aroma from the fish market rising to the second floor was nearly unbearable. To make matters worse, the building was infested with rats. A sign over one door reminded the pupils this was their “last chance for an education.”

In the School Board’s annual report of 1879, it declared that although the school was a pleasing view on the outside, the atmosphere inside was “morally, socially and physically unhealthy.” The rooms were noisy, ill-ventilated and sunless. This report aroused the city council to take action, and a bond-raising proposition for a new high school was made. This proposition was rejected by the voters, but it was re-made in 1881 and was passed by 3,000 votes. Work on a new high school was begun immediately. The chosen site was at 10th and Minnesota St. In 1883, this 27-room building was completed. The first enrollment of the new school was 233 students.

Soon, this building was bursting at the seams.

The school district agreed to build a new school and selected the corner of Lexington Pkwy. and Marshall Ave. as the site. The city purchased the land in 1909 and secured renowned architect Clarence H. Johnston, a Minnesota native, and Central High alumni, to design the new building

Construction of the new high school commenced on May 31, 1910, and the cornerstone was laid on Sept. 16 of that year. St. Paul school board members initially proposed naming the new school “Lexington” in recognition of its new location, but one week before the cornerstone was laid, alumni prevailed on the board to retain the name “Central.” In recognition of the Lexington location, the school chose as its mascot the “Minutemen”—the soldiers who fought at the Battle of Lexington and Concord in the American Revolution.

From 1977-1981, Central underwent a dramatic $16 million remodeling project. To save money, Ellerbe Architects recommended gutting the Clarence Johnston building and adding on. It was originally planned to have the students leave the building for a year so that the construction could take place without disturbances.

However, the vocal members of the community would not permit “the St. Paul School” to be vacant for even one year, so other plans needed to be made. The schedule was changed so that school started at 7am and ended at noon when the workers arrived.

By Sept. 1, 1980, the new sections of the school were ready for occupancy, most of the remodeling project was complete, and the castle-like, “school on the hill” was no longer recognizable, looking more like a common parking ramp with no remaining character. The interior of the school was also greatly changed, except that the auditorium offers a glimmer of familiarity with the former school.

The current building at Marshall and Lexington celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2012.

(Information compiled from the school’s web site and the new “History of Central High School” book.)

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To build a water feature… or not to build… that is the question

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

Traffic congestion, transit use, spillover parking, and noise are familiar sticking points in the debate over Major League Soccer and Midway Center redevelopment talks. A less prominent issue is how storm water runoff will be managed. The storm water management issues weren’t finalized when the stadium site plan, Midway Center master plan, and other issues were passed Aug. 17.

While the approved stadium site plan meets basic stormwater management standards, city officials said Aug. 17 that they’d continue to push for more improvements to that plan and to the larger Midway Center redevelopment plan. St. Paul Director of Planning and Economic Development (PED) Jonathan Sage-Martinson and Wes Saunders-Pearce, the city’s water resources coordinator, said that conversations between Minnesota United FC, Midway Center owner RK Midway and city and watershed district officials continue to be productive.

“Time lines are very fluid,” Saunders-Pearce said. While no one is in a position to make guarantees yet, everyone involved will continue to explore opportunities for conservation and other measures.

City staff has worked with the property owners, watershed district officials and consultants on how to manage water runoff. “Stormwater management is a major consideration,” said Saunders-Pearce. The city wants the property owners to promote using stormwater as a resource.

City Council members want to see more attention paid to stormwater management. While the plan meets basic requirements for stormwater underground storage and managing the flow of water into storm sewers, City Council President Russ Stark said he “strongly encourages” Minnesota United FC and RK Midway to look at a more comprehensive approach.

When it rains or snows now, water runs off of the 34.4–acre redevelopment site and into the city’s storm sewers. That carries pollution from the property.
Watershed district and city officials want to see more done to capture water runoff, treat and recycle water, and add some type of water feature like a fountain or reflecting pool to the plans.

Although saying the project team is willing to look at different ways to manage stormwater, Minnesota United FC lead partner Bill McGuire has for several months resisted the notion of a water feature such as a fountain, stream or pool.

McGuire cites the “significant” ongoing capital maintenance costs of a water feature. The use of space also has to be considered. In June he told the Planning Commission that green space (as opposed to a water feature) allows more options for organized and casual recreation use.

The site plan and superblock master plan include two green spaces, two leading from University Ave. to the stadium, a plaza at the northeast corner of Snelling and St. Anthony avenues, and other public gathering areas near the stadium. None of these areas include a water feature.

Anna Eleria, a projects and grants manager for the watershed district, said the district wants to see plan conditions on stormwater management made stronger.She said the city is looking at similar comprehensive water management measures at other large redevelopment sites, including the former Ford Motor Company site in Highland neighborhood, and the West Side Flats. At Ford, a man-made stream to capture and recycle storm water is being discussed as part of the redevelopment.

Eleria said a water feature would be a plus in the neighborhood, which is more than mile from the Mississippi River and even farther away from water features such as Como Lake.

“We want to emphasize that we want to see rainwater treated as a resource,” Eleria said. The watershed district is willing to help with grant funding.

Eleria cited CHS Field in Lowertown as an example for how a sports facility can incorporate cutting-edge stormwater management practice. CHS Field was planned and built to harvest stormwater and reduce dependence on potable water. CHS Field uses stormwater to keep the grass green, water trees and plantings, and even flush the toilets. A 237,000-galoon cistern holds the water. The roof system there can capture rain from 33,370 square feet or three-quarters of an acre. It saves about 450,000 gallons of water per year. The cost for the system was less than $500,000, out of a $63 million project.

But Saunders-Pearce said one challenge in harvesting rainwater off of the soccer stadium roof is that it would have much less roof area than CHS Field.

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George Seiler

New program seeks to help former caregivers restart their lives

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

A community group working for three years to help make the area a “dementia-friendly” community is starting a new effort, this time to help former caregivers adjust after their care journey has ended.

George Seiler“When I was taking care of my wife, Annie, it was something that I wanted to do and knew I had to do,” said George Seiler (photo right) of White Bear Lake. “But sometimes it gets so intense that you can sort of lose yourself in the process.”

“Then the caregiving ends—the spouse or parent you’ve been caring for passes on,” he said. “Then what do you do? You need to grieve and try to pick up the pieces and move on. But sometimes that’s not so easy. Move on to do what?”

Hearing stories of former caregivers who felt stuck after years of intense and isolating care for a loved one, members of the Roseville Alzheimer’s and Dementia Community Action Team (Roseville A/D), began exploring how to help.

The result is the Dementia Caregiver Re-Entry Initiative, which will be unveiled at a kickoff event on Thur., Sept. 29, at Roseville City Hall from 1-3pm. The keynote speaker will be Connie Goldman, herself a former caregiver and former National Public Radio reporter and producer who has written several books about caregiving.

At the Caregiver Re-Entry kickoff event Sept. 29, former caregivers of parents and spouses will talk about their experiences. In addition, a master’s research student from the University of St. Thomas will describe her interviews with Twin Cities’ professionals about the need to help people after the caregiving ends.

“We do have programs to help caregivers, but almost nothing to help people adjust after the caregiving ends,” said Goldman, formerly from California and now living in Hudson, Wis. “There’s a real need, and we’re just beginning to realize that.”

As part of the initiative, two smaller groups will start meeting in October. They will provide a place where former caregivers can help each other explore how to shift from intense caring for someone else, instead focusing more on their often-neglected needs such as reconnecting with friends and exploring old and new interests.

One group will be for former caregivers only, while the will be open to current and former caregivers.

“We have some ideas about the topics we might address—changed family dynamics, loneliness, health issues, finances, being good to yourself, volunteerism, lots of things,” said Sue Van Zanden. Van Zanden leads a caregiver support group at the Roseville Area Senior Program and will help organize one of the new groups.

“But in the end, it’s the former caregivers who will determine how this initiative can best help them.”

Warren Wolfe is a retired writer for the Star Tribune, where he covered aging issues. He is a member of the Roseville Alzheimer’s and Dementia Community Action Team.

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Friends who are family—the story of a 50 (or 60) year friendship

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

Lorraine Quinn and Irene McGuire have been friends for over 50 years.

“We met in the 50’s,” said Lorraine.

“No, it was the 60’s,” replied Irene.

“We don’t know… It has been a long time,” they chimed in together, “been there, done that!”

I was met at the elevator door of Falcon Heights Apartments with the sprightly smile and the welcoming voice of Lorraine. As soon as we opened her apartment door, I was welcomed by a wall of pictures that included the happy faces of friends and family.

“IRENE! Meghan’s here,” yelled Lorraine.

We sat down at the kitchen table to a large spread of food.

“Who all did you think was coming?” asked Irene of Lorraine.

Their comfort with each other was evident in how they communicated. They’re sassy, spunky and willing to share their wisdom with me. This is the story of Lorraine and Irene, the women who wear many hats—daughters, sisters, wives, mothers, grandmothers, great-grandmothers and best friends.

Lorraine hails from St. Paul, where she got her first job working at the neighborhood theater. She still remembers how much she hated making caramel corn every Tuesday. Those theater days came back later in life after she married the love of her life, Don who was a projectionist in the theater.

While Lorraine was in the big city, Irene grew up in a farm town in Wisconsin. She was on the first ever school bus her town had. She’s thankful she went to the town hall dance her senior year of high school because that is where she met her husband, Tom.

Both Irene and Lorraine come from strong family backgrounds. Their love for their husbands and children is evident in the way their eyes light up when they talk about them.

“My kids are my greatest accomplishment,” stated Irene, “They’re pretty nice.”

They love spending time with their children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.

When they aren’t with family, they are with each other.

Their story starts with their husbands. Don Quinn lived in New Richmond, WI where his Dad owned a pool hall. Tom McGuire was a regular at the pool hall and often called Don, “Rack Boy”! They lost touch but reconnected when they were both looking for jobs in St. Paul. They both got the job—Don worked there for the summer, and Tom worked there for his whole life. At this point, Lorraine and Irene have still not met.

A while down the road Irene and Tom were going out to dinner with another couple. The other couple asked if they could bring some friends along and of course, Irene and Tom said yes. In walk Lorraine and Don.

“Rack boy!” yelled Tom.

Irene and Lorraine have been friends ever since.

Lorraine and Irene do everything together. So much so that people interchange their names regularly. They stay active by playing cards, going out to eat, going to building events, attending the St. Paul Chamber Orchestra and regular visits to the Ordway where Lorraine’s son works.
When asked what the secret was to a happy and long-lasting friendship, the answer was simple.

“We’ve never had a fight,” stated Lorraine.

“Well, we’re easy to get along with,” replied Irene.

Just because they haven’t had a fight, doesn’t mean they haven’t had disagreements. A little while back Lorraine decided to sign Irene up for an event in their building, and Irene was not happy about it. When the next event came up, Lorraine didn’t sign Irene up and asked why she didn’t. Because of this, Irene gets signed up for everything.

Both are involved in the Falcon Heights Nurse Block program. The program helps them keep up with their exercise. They both stress how important it is to stay active.

Their energy and charisma even got them a spot as ‘Flower Ladies’ in their exercise instructors wedding this past year. They received national attention and even had Lorraine’s son calling her from Texas saying he saw her on the news.

Lorraine had a more intimate relationship with the nurse block program when her husband was sick. They looked through the house to make Don’s life easier and arranged for someone to visit with Don so she could run errands.

“When I needed them, they were wonderful,” started Lorraine, “You have no idea.”

At the end of our time together I asked if there was any advice they could give for the younger generations. They stressed the importance of keeping friends because families are busy, and they have every right to be. They also say keeping busy is vital—if they don’t have anything to do, Lorraine usually manufacturers something for them.

Lastly, I asked if there is anything they know now that they didn’t when they were twenty.

“When we were twenty,” laughed both of them, “We didn’t know anything!”

They know how fortunate they are to have each other and never take advantage of their friendship. It is indisputable that Lorraine and Irene are best friends who’ve become family.


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Como High soccer

Upperclassmen comprise ‘link crew’ welcoming freshmen

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

News from Como Park High School compiled by ERIC ERICKSON, Social Studies Teacher

• Como Park High School’s “Link Crew” is composed of 90 juniors and seniors that volunteer to be positive leaders and mentors for freshmen. The Link Crew welcomed and hosted Como’s incoming class of 2020 on Sept. 1 for an orientation session. The Link Crew Leaders prepared for the event with two intensive days of training that focused on community and fellowship, leading up to the implementation of inclusive activities that provided the new students with a sense of belonging. The faculty advisors for Como’s Link Crew are Maria Cocchiarella and Alisson Hartzell.

• Como’s Academy of Finance (AOF) is pleased to be connected with several companies this year to provide group mentoring to AOF students. Group mentors are committed to working in the classroom once a month, assisting with a variety of student projects. Every AOF Business class has a semester project. Freshmen will conduct a financial literacy fair, sophomores present a product for consumption in a foreign country, juniors execute an accounting simulation, and seniors work on a business communications project.

AOF mentoring partners that will host student presentations of projects at their company or institution include Xcel Energy, the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, and the St. Paul City Government. Additional new partners include The Travelers and Grant Thornton LLP.

• Urban Boatbuilders hosted the launch of their canoes and kayaks at Lake Como on Aug. 18. Como Park student Anthony Williams emceed the event as one of the fifteen summer apprentices in the program and was joined by fellow Como Park students Zaj Lee, Shyanna Carpenter and DeShawn Sparkman. Students shared the impact of their experience designing and constructing the boats, describing personal growth in patience, confidence, and teamwork.

Urban Boatbuilders is a local non-profit organization that empowers youth to develop skills they need to succeed in school, work and life through the building and use of wooden boats. The launch at Lake Como was a huge success for the students, and was followed by a week-long culminating voyage into the Boundary Waters Canoe Area with their mentors and boats!

• WE Day is an inspirational and star-studded festival scheduled for Sept. 20 at the Xcel Energy Center. 27 Como Park student leaders will be privileged to attend. Como’s participants were selected based on service and volunteerism in school and community events, meshing with the WE mission to bring youth together and provide tools to positively impact the world.

• The Como Park volleyball team will begin defense of their St. Paul City title with a conference match against Harding on Sept. 13 at 7pm in the Como Gymnasium. The community is invited to attend and support the Cougars!

Como High soccer• Mayor Chris Coleman will visit the Como Soccer Field on Fri., Sept. 16 to present the “Mayor’s Cup” to the winners of the Humboldt vs. Como soccer games.

Photo right: High school athletic teams began fall practices on Aug. 15. The Como Park Girls’ Soccer team opened their season with a convincing 4-0 victory over Mounds Park Academy on Aug. 27.

The girls’ game begins at 3:15pm. The boys’ game begins at 5pm. At the conclusion of the boys’ game, the Mayor will present a “Mayor’s Cup” traveling trophy to the winner of each game. The community is invited to support the teams and celebrate the success of soccer in St. Paul with Mayor Coleman.

The Cougars will also host a Community Day for the boys’ and girls’ double-header versus Washington on Tues., Sept. 20. The boys play at 3:15pm followed by the girls at 5pm. The teams are hosting the “Soccer Stars” youth players and inviting all youth families and community supporters to cheer on the Cougars! The Como Soccer Field is located east of the school building past the tennis courts.

• Como Park’s all school open house and parent night will be held at the school from 5-7pm on Thur., Sept. 27. All families and students from grades 9-12 are invited to visit with teachers and staff members, tour classrooms, and explore programs, clubs, and activities that Como students can access. Light refreshments will be provided.

• Homecoming Spirit Week is scheduled for Oct. 3-7 with dress-up days, the coronation of the royal court, and a pep fest to recognize Cougar athletic teams. Sat., Oct. 8 will be full of activity beginning with the Homecoming Parade at 11am. The route proceeds on Grotto, Wheelock and Victoria concluding back at school with a picnic. The Homecoming Football Game is scheduled for 2pm at Central’s Griffin Stadium and the Homecoming Dance will be Saturday night.

• Save the date! On Thur., Nov. 10 and Fri., Nov. 11, the Como Theatre and Music Department will present the annual fall musical in the Como Auditorium.
The show is entitled “Yearbook Reflections,” an upbeat musical about the willpower, compassion, and humor found in every high school.

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Hamline Ave. bike lanes approved to Minnehaha

Hamline Ave. bike lanes approved to Minnehaha

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

IOC01_15BikeSignHamline Ave. between University and Minnehaha avenues will be striped for bicycle lanes this fall, the St. Paul City Council decided Aug. 17. A plan to extend the project from Minnehaha to Pierce Butler Rte. was laid over until Sept. 14, to give neighborhood residents and city staff more time to discuss parking issues.

The citywide bicycle plan, which won City Council approval in 2015, calls for Hamline Ave. to have a bicycle lane from the north city limits at Larpenteur Ave. to Montreal Ave. and Edgcumbe Rd. It would connect to area routes including Marshall, Snelling, St. Clair and Jefferson avenues. Advocates contend that there is a great need for a north-south bike route through St. Paul and that Hamline is a great option. Having the Hamline Midway section striped could be the first step toward a larger project.

Some affected Hamline Midway residents and business owners worry about the loss of on-street parking. Part of the route would be near Hamline University, which already generates spillover parking in the neighborhood.

Council President Russ Stark represents the area where the work will be done this fall. He said that with more support for the University to Minnehaha segment, work there can go ahead this fall.

More discussion with community members is needed before the Minnehaha to Pierce Butler Rte. area is striped. One issue to be addressed is parking near the Hamline High Rise, especially staff parking. Another issue is what can be done for homeowners with no alley and no off-street parking.

The re-striping will be done in conjunction with a mill and overlay project from University to Minnehaha said Luke Hanson of the St. Paul Department of Public Works. The city worked with neighbors and Hamline Midway Coalition on the plans, and did a series of parking counts. By Public Works’ estimate, there is plenty of available parking on east-side cross streets to accommodate vehicles.

The street width in the area south of Minnehaha is 40 feet, said Hanson. Plans for Hamline between University and Minnehaha call for two five-foot bike lanes, an eight-foot parking lane on one side of the street, an 11-foot travel lane in each direction and parking bans at all four corners of Charles Ave.

To accommodate the installation of bike lanes, parking would be removed on the east side of Hamline between Sherburne and Minnehaha, except for the northern half of the block between Van Buren and Minnehaha. Parking removal is also proposed for the west side of Hamline between Van Buren and Minnehaha. New time-limited parking, with a one-hour limit, is proposed on the south side of Thomas east of Hamline. That would accommodate businesses.
The street narrows north of Minnehaha, so parking would have to be banned on both sides of Hamline.

Almost two dozen people attended the Aug. 17 public hearing, with equal numbers of project foes and supporters. Some project foes said that the area already has north-south bike lanes on Griggs and Pascal streets and that another north-south route isn’t needed. Others suggested that Albert St. be considered for the connection north of Minnehaha.

Hamline Midway resident and longtime bicycle advocate Benita Warns asked the council to consider the high-rise residents, who are older and in some cases, disabled. She also asked that other routes be considered. “You spent half a million on Griggs,” she said. Warns said more community discussion is needed before the Hamline project goes ahead.

Other project foes said they would lose residential and business parking. Another concern is safety. Ann Finseth, who lives near Hamline and University, said the route isn’t safe.

But supporters, including Hamline Midway Coalition, and past and current leaders of the St. Paul Bicycle Coalition, said the bike lanes are needed. Supporters said the route would provide connections to area universities and k-12 schools, as well as a route to work. One speaker said that more than 50 students ride bicycles to Great River School on Pierce Butler Rte.

Highland resident and bicycle advocate Andy Singer said that while there are other shorter north-south routes, “Hamline is a direct route.” He noted that using the other routes would force cyclists to zig-zag through the neighborhoods.


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Back to School at Hamline Elementary

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

Hamline Elementary School by JESSICA KOPP

• School is back in session in St. Paul Public Schools and good vibes are filling the hallways and classrooms of 1599 Englewood. Students, with smiles and boundless energy, are busy building community and mapping out a fantastic voyage of discovery alongside a talented and spirited staff. And as we say hello to the new school year, we say goodbye to a summer that included two awesome Hamline Elementary family nights at Hancock Recreation Center where familiar faces met new faces and excitement about the upcoming school year was born.

• On the first day of school, Hamline staff and families returned to finer, less unruly gardens, thanks to the summertime efforts of Hamline University’s Office of Sustainability. This is the same team who worked with last year’s fifth graders to breathe new life into an under-utilized space. They also worked with Hamline University’s LEAP into St. Paul project on the first day of school to continue the work of transforming the sunny, south-facing entrance on Englewood into a beautiful and engaging inquiry garden. This garden partnership is the latest and only one of many nurtured by the Hamline to Hamline Collaboration as these two campuses begin their 25th year of formal collaboration.

• We’re closer to welcoming fall the way we have the last two years with the 3rd Annual Hamline Elementary Fall Festival on Sat., Oct. 1. Working again with the best neighbor ever, Hancock Recreation Center, and for the first time with the Hamline Midway Coalition, our school community is thrilled to welcome neighbors to join us for an afternoon of free, family-friendly neighborhood fun. Check out http://hamlinemidway.org/fallfestival for more details.

• On the first day of school, the building at 1599 Englewood began its fourth year as Hamline Elementary—a change from the inexplicably long-named Hancock-Hamline University Collaborative Magnet. As a new generation of families come to know this space as Hamline Elementary, we invite you to learn more about the people and programming that make this place unlike any other. Good things are happening at Hamline Elementary; you can follow our journey at the Discover Hamline Elementary Facebook page or call 651-293-8715 to arrange a visit; we have a lot of awesome to share.

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Money for Central High; Furniture Barn to relocate on University Ave.

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

Development Roundup by JANE MCCLURE

City Council says they will find money for Central
Central High School’s Transforming Central project will receive assistance through the St. Paul Neighborhood Sales Tax Revitalization (STAR) Program. The St. Paul City Council Aug. 3 agreed to work with project supporters to find $100,000 in unspent past project fund balances.

The council also approved funding totaling $1.933 million for 18 other projects.

Transforming Central project backers sought a $100,000 grant, with a $560,249 match (see stories on pages 1 and 7).

Ward Three Council Member and Central High alumnus Chris Tolbert worked with parents to find funding.

Several other area projects were among the 18 recommended by the Neighborhood STAR Board. Ranked second citywide are patio improvements at Burning Brother Brewing, 1750 Thomas Av. The business won a $10,000 grant and $10,000 loan.

Other requests approved included Minnesota Cameroon Community’s $37,000 grant for building improvements at 1020 Bandana Blvd.; a $5,000 grant to soundproof meeting rooms at Independent Filmmaker Project Minnesota, 550 Vandalia St.; and a $50,000 grant and $50,000 loan toward further redevelopment at the former Old Home Dairy building at Western and University.

A total of 39 projects came in for the 2016 competitive grant and loan round, with 38 undergoing review. The recommended total was $1.245 in grants and $687,500 in loans. The 18 approved projects listed matches totaling $14.765 million.

Furniture Barn to relocate
Furniture Barn, a longtime Midway business, will be relocating to the former Midway Chevrolet building at University Ave. and Albert St. Work began on the building this summer and will continue with a new roof and refurbished interior.

The building has been vacant for almost a decade. It dates from the 1920s and is one of the last vestiges of University Aveenue’s “auto row.” It is owned by the Krebsbach family, owners of the motor vehicle dealership for many years.

Anderson Companies is leading the renovation. Work was done on the building three years ago to remove hazardous materials.
Store representatives had raised questions during the Major League Soccer planning process about how a new stadium would affect them.

Furniture Barn has had a presence in the Midway area for more than 40 years and currently operates a store at 453 N. Snelling Ave.

Furniture Barn has not announced how long it will maintain the Snelling location. The new site is expected to open this winter.

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R&R Forms

Be prepared to be resilient

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

Ready and Resilient by TRUDY DUNHAM

Be prepared. It works for the Boy Scouts. It also works for life. We are more flexible, more efficient and more resilient when we are prepared for what life sends us.

And climate change is sending us a lot of severe weather. So take advantage of National Preparedness Month to get ready! Have the conversations, put your plans in writing, and gather supplies for your emergency kits!

How are we impacted by severe weather?
The most common impact is the loss of power. No electricity. This can mean no lights, the inability to cook a meal or to charge or use a cell phone, and limitations on our ability to work or entertain ourselves. Our food supplies may be endangered. We may not be able to stay warm or cool. If the power outage is prolonged, there can be safety concerns.

Storms can result in unexpected school and business closures, disrupt transportation routes and leave family members stranded. Severe weather can mean we can’t stay in our home, and we may even need to evacuate our community.

The result is often confusion and chaos—unless we have thought about it, talked it over with our family, and formed a plan.

As you hold that conversation, include these questions: Can everyone text their location and confirm their safety in severe weather or other emergencies? What out-of-town person could act as your backup emergency contact? Can everyone memorize that person’s phone number? Where is a safe meeting place in your neighborhood, in case your home is unavailable? A meeting place outside of your neighborhood? Can everyone get there on their own?

If you live alone, or if you may need assistance, identify several people who can help you. Talk with them about your needs and your plan. If you have pets, don’t forget to consider their needs.

R&R FormsPlan, then prepare
Once you have your plan, then you need to take the action steps to be prepared to respond quickly without panicking. Some habits that can help you be ready include:
• Keep gas in the car, or have a Bus Pass or Go Card so that you can transport yourself
• Renew prescriptions so you always have at least a week’s supply on hand
• Keep your cell phone at least half charged
• Write out instructions on how to turn off utilities (water, gas, electricity), and place them by the various switches, with any tools needed to turn them off.
• Carry Emergency Information in your wallet
• Have your Emergency To-Go Bag packed and easily accessible
• Have your Emergency House Kit stocked and in the safest part of your home (likely the basement or bathroom)

R&R WalletWallet Emergency Information (left) includes your emergency out-of-town contact (name, phone number) and safe meeting place (name, address, phone number, how to get there) information. It is good to have this written down as many people have difficulty recalling details in a crisis. If you are unable to communicate, emergency personnel may find it.

The Emergency To-Go bag holds things you may need if you have to leave your home on short notice and are not sure when you can get back.
• Copies of identity information, insurance and bank documents, and prescriptions for glasses or medications
• Cash (smaller bills)
• Complete change of clothes, suitable to the weather (include shoes)
• Personal hygiene supplies
• Flashlight with batteries

Your Emergency House Kit will have things you need if you have to shelter in your home for several days without utilities. Recommended supplies include:
• 3 gallons of water per person, for drinking and sanitation (3 day supply)
• 3-day supply of non-perishable food per person, that does not require cooking
• Paper plates, cups, plastic utensils, paper towels, multipurpose tool
• First aid kit
• Garbage bags, ties and moist wipes for sanitation
• Flashlights and batteries
• Weather radio (battery powered or hand crank)
• Special needs supplies (e.g., diapers for infants, pet food, etc.)
• Games, books and other activities
• Blankets, sleeping bag, tarp

Federal websites offer more complete lists and information to help you prepare:
• https://www.ready.gov/publications
• http://www.cdc.gov/phpr/npm/index.htm
• http://www.nctsn.org/resources/public-awareness/national-preparedness-month%20
When you have your information and kits in place, hold a practice drill. Have a friend text “emergency preparedness drill” to each member of your family. Each member should then text the emergency contact and proceed to the agreed-upon safe meeting site on their own. As you gather, talk about what worked well, or not so well. Then celebrate your preparedness!

The Ready & Resilient Hamline Midway project is an initiative of the Hamline Midway Environmental Group (HMEG) to build climate change resilience in our community.

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Como Composts Colorized.cdr

Fairgrounds Citywide Drop-off Event is Oct. 8

Posted on 05 September 2016 by Calvin

Como Community Council Corner by MICHAEL KUCHTA

Got junk you need to get rid of? How about not-so-junky stuff you simply don’t need anymore? Then take it all to St. Paul’s Citywide Drop-off Event at the State Fairgrounds. District 10 is the lead organizer for the annual event, but any St. Paul resident can participate.

The clean-up event runs Sat., Oct. 8, 8am-1pm. It is an easy way to get rid of things you can’t put in the trash. You can dispose of some things for free (examples include bikes, cell phones, dishes, fluorescent bulbs, linens, and tools), but typically there’s a charge. Cars pay $10 for a load of general junk or construction debris; vans, pickups, and trailers pay $15-$20. For specialized items, there are specific fees. For example, tires are $3-$10; electronics are usually $8 each; appliances are generally $10 each; and old furniture is between $5-$20, depending on what it is.

There also will be an expanded reuse area, so goods in good shape can go to a nonprofit instead of to the landfill. Plus, you can bring confidential papers for free shredding.

Pay attention to District 10’s website for full details as the date approaches www.district10comopark.org.

Want to volunteer? Residents who volunteer to staff the clean-up event get to bring in one load of materials for free. If you want to volunteer, contact District 10 by email at district10@district10comopark.org or by phone at 651-644-3889.

Learn the ins and outs of your credit score
District 10 will host a free financial workshop sharing how to improve your credit score. The workshop is being organized and presented by TopLine Federal Credit Union and LSS Financial Counseling.
The workshop will cover topics such as:
• The rules and myths of credit scoring
• How to spot errors on credit reports
• Exercising rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act

The workshop takes place on Thurs., Sept. 22, from 6-7:30pm, at the Como Park Streetcar Station, on the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton.

Como Composts Colorized.cdrYou’re taking organics recycling seriously
District 10’s organics recycling drop-off site in Como Park has been an immediate success. After being open only a month, we’ve already had to double the size of the drop-off container. And residents depleted our initial supply of starter kits.

But you can still take part. We’ve now got additional starter kits available at our office (including a plastic kitchen bucket, while supplies last). If you don’t need the bucket, we’ve also got compostable bags, refrigerator magnets, and other supplies to help you succeed in reducing your waste footprint.

You can pick up supplies at the Como Park Streetcar Station any Sunday in September between noon and 4pm.

Learn more about organics recycling: Read the insert in this month’s Monitor, or go to RamseyRecycles.com (just click on Organic Waste).
You’re invited to sit in

The District 10 board and standing committees meet monthly— and community members are always welcome to attend, participate, and speak or raise concerns. The schedule:
• Land Use: Monday before the first Wednesday, 7pm
• Neighborhood Relations and Safety: first Tuesday, 7pm
• Board: third Tuesday, 7pm
• Environment: Last Wednesday, 7pm

All meetings are at the Como Park Streetcar Station, at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton.

Get your recycling gear here
The Como Park Streetcar Station is open from noon-4pm every Sunday between now and the end of September. We’ll have a District 10 board member on hand to distribute recycling bins, organics composting bags, or just take your comments and suggestions. The Streetcar Station is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton.

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