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The St. Paul September 2010 Volume 44 Number 9

Smith Ave. Revisited

REDA welcomes new executive director Page 2

Strengths, weaknesses discussed for enahancement project Mary Diedrick Hansen Staff Writer

C

reating a new Smith Avenue is complicated. Why? First, it involves the coordination and commitment of two cities, West St. Paul and St. Paul, whose boundaries cross the avenue. Add another party, the Minnesota Department of Transportation (Mn/ DOT), which has jurisdiction over the road, and you have three government entities attempting to work together to revive this once lively area. If the development planning stage is any indication, it appears that all systems are “go.” Working closely with another city to redevelop a business corridor is a first for both St. Paul and West St. Paul. Much has happened since a kickoff event last October when 100 interested individuals gathered at the Cherokee Tavern on Smith. A steering committee was formed as well as a Smith Avenue Task Force of 16 business owners, homeowners and renters from both cities, with twothirds from St. Paul and one-third from West St. Paul, reflecting the percentage of jurisdiction each city maintains along the avenue. University of Minnesota students from the Humphrey Institute and the Carlson School of Business Management Volunteer Graduate Corps were recruited to conduct surveys and

Smith Avenue task force members met recently to discuss ways to enhance the corridor, which contains a mix of retail and housing. analyze the challenges and opportunities in the business corridor, which begins at the Smith Avenue Bridge in St. Paul and ends at Dodd Road in West St. Paul. At a July meeting, 40 people gathered for a progress report and to share the results of the surveys, analysis and input from task force members and the University students. The West Side’s Riverfront Economic Development Association (REDA) has been coordinating the efforts of the different entities. Jenny Ticcioni, REDA’s outreach manager, described the task force members,

selected from a pool of 40 applicants, as a very dedicated and hard-working group. With nearly perfect attendance, they have been meeting monthly to listen to speakers from Mn/DOT, police officers from both cities, and zoning specialists to learn about development and garner feedback. The group also took walking tours for a curbside view of the avenue. “They did their homework and came back with a SWOT (strength, weakness, opportunity and threat) analysis,” said Ticcioni. According to the analysis, weaknesses outnumber strengths, but

opportunities abound, while threats are minimal. Strengths are associated with location: being close to downtown, West St. Paul and Cherokee Park, with views of the river and the Capitol. Weaknesses are wrapped around design elements, such as lack of parking, narrow sidewalks, a narrow street that becomes even narrower when busses stop, and unmarked crosswalks, which cause a safety hazard. The weakness list also included a lack of cohesiveness in business mix, as well as vacant properties. Opportunities included high traffic counts with easy access to the rest of the region, affordable housing that could be used for home-based businesses, streetscape uniformity between cities and, for residents, convenient walking distance to local shops and restaurants. The area immediately surrounding the corridor is free from commercial centers north of Annapolis and west of Stryker Avenue, which is an immediate, potential customer base for the corridor. “Threats” include limited financing due to the recession, competition from nearby business districts, concerns for public safety and chronically empty businesses. Getting the vast num-

Smith Avenue Page 4

Village at Mendota Heights continues to attract new tenants Page 8

Get involved in America’s Great Outdoor Initiative Page 12


P eople REDA welcomes new executive director Mary Diedrick Hansen Staff Writer

F

or the past five years, Chris Romano served as director of the Riverview Economic Development Association (REDA). In mid-August, he handed the reins over to a new director in order to pursue a master’s degree in business at the University of Minnesota’s Carlson School of Business. He was awarded a prestigious Bush Foundation Fellowship, which enables him to take time off from work. “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Romano. “It’s hard to leave an organization where I have put blood, sweat and tears into it. I will miss the spirit of the West Side community.” He is most proud of the enhanced sense of community established since

he became executive director. He is also gratified by the increase in commercial real estate development and the ability of the organization to revitalize properties that have been vacant and blighted for years. REDA is weathering the current financial crisis very well, he said, because it has fostered partnerships with foundations and local government. He believes he is leaving the organization in good hands with his successor, Dr. Cheryl Maloney. “I am a huge fan of Cheryl,” said Romano. “We had dozens and dozens of applicants, but Cheryl rose to the top. She shows strong leadership and interpersonal communication skills. She will be a dynamic leader, and be able to mentor staff with her wealth of diverse and

unique work experience.” Getting a job in community development in Minnesota is like coming full circle for Maloney, who was born in St. Paul, grew up in South Minneapolis, and as an adult moved to the Selby-Dale area of St. Paul when it was a rough-and-tumble part of town in the 1970s. A run-down sixplex “flophouse” is where she said she experienced her version of the TV sitcom “Friends.” She also got her first taste of community development and neighborhood activism when she joined the DFL party and worked to try to turn her neighborhood into a safe, successful business and residential area of the city. Maloney got her degree from the University of Minnesota in theater and communications, and became director of sales and

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Photo by Marina Castillo

Cheryl Maloney succeeds Chris Romano as executive director at the West Side-base Riverview Economic Development Association. marketing for Fredrickson Communications, where she worked with executives from local corporations in providing expertise in technical writing, documentation and training. During this time, Maloney decided to help a friend move temporarily into the Catholic Order of the Sisters of the

Holy Family Convent in Fremont, Calif., until she could find an apartment in the area. During the moving process, Maloney was introduced to the President of the Order and learned that the convent needed a communication and development director. She couldn’t help herself, she said. She never intended

to move to the San Francisco Bay area, but decided to do something “radically different” and took the job. She subleased her Selby/Dale house, and for the next 3 ½ years lived with the sisters. During that time, she organized many fundraisers to help the surrounding community understand that the nuns were not paid by

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Page 2 - St. Paul Voice - September 2010

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the archdiocese and were expected to be self-sufficient. One of the most significant problems was that upon reaching retirement age, the nuns had no Social Security benefits. Maloney’s fundraising events brought many people to the convent to meet the nuns, including Fremont’s mayor and city council members. Tea parties for elderly widows who had once been students of the nuns resulted in million dollar donations to the Order. Maloney was then recruited by the Fremont Chamber of Commerce to become the special events director for the City’s annual Art and Wine Festival, a two-day event that typically draws 400,000 people to view the work of 800 artists and sample a wide variety of wine and beer. “I came in the fifteenth year and developed a much bigger children and family area,” said Maloney. “I started

a children’s art contest. The schools were elated to be a part of the festival. There was more community involvement and community spirit.” From there she moved to Cañada College in Redwood, Calif., where, as vice president of development for the two-year college, she worked with the Gap, Inc., clothing foundation to increase the number of scholarships for Latino women. At that time, she said, the San Francisco Bay area began experiencing what Maloney called “a breast cancer epidemic.” Troubled by this, in 1998, with two of her friends, she embarked on what she says is one of her greatest accomplishments to date: the founding of a nonprofit called Hope, Empowerment, Renew and Success (HERS) Breast Cancer Foundation, which provides education and post-operative services for breast cancer survivors, support-

ing their well-being with post-surgical products regardless of their financial status. To change insurance policy, she worked with senators and lobbied insurance companies. HERS grew to the point where it needed an executive director. In order to create a paid position for herself, and create a way to leave her job at Cañada College, she organized a variety of fundraising campaigns. One included a $1,000 plate dinner for the “who’s who” of the Bay area. Maloney worked with the foundation from 1999 through 2004. It was just getting its legs when Maloney got word that her aging parents in Minnesota needed her help. At first thinking that she would stay for an extended visit to help them, she soon realized her parents needed her more long-term. She returned to Minnesota and worked at a series of parttime jobs while attending

to her parents needs. She soon found a job as acting financial director at Hallie Q. Brown Community Center, Inc., a private, nonprofit social service agency serving the Summit-University area of St. Paul. Her responsibilities included preparing the budget and providing documentation to major foundations for funding. Once that project was completed, she became director of the Women’s Cancer Resource Center, an independent organization serving the needs of all people diagnosed with cancer. Unfortunately, funding was lost, but just as she was leaving her post a part-time job fell into her lap: working with Twin City Pride, the largest two-day event in the Midwest. It was near bankruptcy when she took over, but during her three years there,

the organization experienced the most successful years it had ever had, both financially and in attendance. The number of sponsors grew from 5 to 35, and the number of vendors at the event grew exponentially. She left in the fall of 2009 to spend more time with her ailing father, who had suffered a stroke, all the while looking for a job that would be the “perfect fit” for her. A colleague encouraged her to apply for the executive director position at REDA. She began on August 1. “For this job I will be calling on every experience I have had,” she said. “I feel confident in growing Cinco de Mayo, but areas like development will require a lot of networking and pounding the pavement.” Her job will be to secure new funding and resources so

REDA can “ride through the storm and come out on the bright side.” “I hope to grow the organization during a changing time in the economy,” she said. “With our area as a microcosm of the greater city, we want to respond appropriately and successfully and not succumb to current economic times. Where are the untapped resources?” she wondered aloud. “We want the neighborhood to thrive with help from city officials. When I see a need, I will look into how to partner or get help from corporate sponsorships. Remember, we are only a bridge away from downtown St. Paul. The West Side is an area that will be in great demand, and REDA is in a strong position to make things happen in the community.”

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St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 3


E conomic Development Smith Avenue from page 1

ber of fast-moving commuters moving daily along the corridor to stop and shop has proven dif-

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ficult for Smith Avenue businesses. The University students attributed this to the lack of adequate parking, little promotion of Smith Avenue

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District del Sol. The students’ analysis described Robert Street, which competes with Smith Avenue for all retail shopping, as “an uninviting and unappealing street with large corporate occupants and no ‘local’ feeling.” However, the analysis continued, “prices are low and the range of businesses allow for a convenient shopping experience.” Average annual traffic data from 2000-2008 indicate that 18,000 vehicles travel along Smith

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Avenue daily. On the down side, the data show that traffic declined during 2006-2008 from the Smith Avenue Bridge to the Dodd/Smith intersection. In contrast, traffic counts for Robert Street/George Street and the Robert Street/Baker Street intersections increased over the same period, indicating that development of quality, sustainable businesses drives traffic to the area. The students’ analysis showed that just under 60 businesses with a wide range of occupants are located on Smith Avenue between the bridge and the south end of Dodd Road. A handful of business gaps exist, including entertainment, pharmaceutical, hardware, copy/ print services, apparel and sporting goods. A word of caution was issued by the students that without a unified vision and ongoing participation from the majority of existing business owners during tenant recruitment, business promotion and development of a commercial corridor, the overall success of revitalizing the corridor and making it a destination area will be minimal. Property owners must avoid recruiting tenants to meet their own needs while ignoring the community vision. The most critical elements for new business start-ups will likely be access to financing, affordable retail space, and the assurance that Smith Avenue offers an attractive marketplace. Student analysis showed that an emphasis should be placed on the careful selection and wooing of relevant, sustainable businesses. Factors to consider include: Does the prospective tenant help fill in the business gaps that exist? Does it complement existing businesses and prospective businesses? Does the business promote the identity of the area? Does it have structural support, financing and a target market? The analysis recommended improvements

to street design, beautification and signage in order for Smith Avenue to jump out at commuters as a community with character. In the short term, plants and flowering pots along the corridor would make the area more welcoming. Decorative awnings and signage would call attention to businesses. The use of paving stone on the streets and decorative street lamps would signal a distinct district. Adding to a cohesive look would be a “design code” along the corridor, which would call for some businesses in the area to build/remodel to a certain standard. Developing a corridor theme for promoting the district was also mentioned. An immediate recommendation was to register Smith Avenue with major search engines such as Google, bing and Yahoo so potential visitors can easily find it. The analysis suggested reviewing the Lake Street Council in its revitalization of the Lake Street area in Minneapolis as an example. Its website provides information on membership, financial support and new tenants. Former REDA executive director Chris Romano said the plan is coming together, but the next step is implementation, which will rely on neighborhood coordination. “We need your support to take the vision and implement it,” he said. The extent that West Side organizations like REDA, the Neighborhood Development Alliance and West Side Citizen’s Organization are able to encourage participation from their supporters will be of the utmost importance. Among the work left to be done is the development a corridor identity. Once the Corridor Identity Presentation is done, the Small Area Plan will be reviewed, with final review completed in early 2011. At that point, the Small Area Plan will go to the city councils of West St. Paul and St. Paul for approval.


E ducation

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Plugging the Educational GAP Mary Diedrick Hansen Staff Writer

T

ucked away in a corner of St. Paul’s West Side next to Highway 52 is the Guadalupe Alternative Program’s (GAP) alternative High School. It’s a compact three-story structure where teachers and staff work with some of the city’s most needy and streetwise students to help them attain a high school diploma or General Educational Development test (GED). Typical students who enter GAP’s front door have been expelled from the St. Paul Public School system, according to GAP communications director Marcia Soto. Most face seemingly impossible obstacles. Some are homeless, others are behind in credits, or are pregnant or have children, and a hugh number, 90 percent, live in poverty. With on-site daycare, mental health services, bus cards and free breakfast and hot lunch, the school is determined to level any barriers standing in the way of these students getting the education necessary for them to succeed in life. Sophan Nhea, a 1998 graduate of GAP, is an example of the lifechanging impact that one person can have on another. It was GAP teacher Mitch Walking Elk who pulled him off the road to self-destruction and gently guided him back on track. Now, Nhea is mentoring teens who have the same issues he had at their age, trying to steer them in the right direction. When Nhea was in junior high, he joined a gang, and at 15 was expelled from school for carrying a handgun. He served six months at Boys Totem Town juvenile residential correctional facility in St. Paul. He heard about GAP from others serving time there. Nhea was one of seven

children. His parents immigrated to the United States from a Taiwanese refugee camp when he was a year old. After brief stays in West Virginia and California, the family arrived in St. Paul and settled into a large duplex on the East Side. From the age of three, he remembers his parents being away at work most of the time, trying hard to earn money to pay for food and rent for the large family. In 1986, the family moved to Torre de San Miguel Homes on the West Side. With his parents gone most of the time, Nhea said his brothers and sisters had to learn for themselves what was right and wrong. With little guidance from his older siblings, his life was out of control. After his expulsion from school and time served at the correctional facility, he eventually made his way to GAP at age 16. He checked it out for a few days, and left. “I lost interest,” he said. But the school had not lost interest in him. In fact, he was tracked down and rousted out of bed one morning by teacher Mitch Walking Elk, who wanted to know why he wasn’t in school. Nhea was surprised and impressed. “Doing the extra stuff like that really meant a lot,” he said. “It showed that someone really cared. My dad didn’t know English but always said, ‘help my son.’ Mitch said he would.” And Mitch did. He asked questions and was concerned about Nhea’s daily life. “He knew my background, but still accepted me as the person that I am,” said Nhea. “I didn’t have any credits when I arrived and had to pretty much start fresh.” Nhea worked the night shift at Cub Foods cleaning floors and went di-

rectly to school in the morning. It took him an extra year to graduate, but he did it with extra credits for his on-the-job training. What was it that convinced him to turn his life around? “Knowing that someone cares,” he said. “You go through your early childhood hearing that you won’t amount to something. You have to trust somebody. You need someone to constantly be there. It takes small conversations and time to build a relationship of trust where you can say anything.” He graduated in December 1998, got his own place and a minimum wage job that was just barely paying the rent and keeping food on the table. “I came to Mitch to ask for help,” he said. “Mitch talked to Jody (Nelson, GAP’s associate director).” The school created a position for Nhea as Mitch’s assistant. Nhea estimates that through talks with young kids about his past, along with the one-on-one mentoring, teaching and counseling he does at the school, he has probably touched the lives of at least a thousand young people in his 11 years at GAP. He was also involved in the Heads Up program for fourththrough sixth-graders at Cherokee Elementary School, where he spent time helping them with homework and mentoring. “My kids,” he said with pride of the Heads Up kids. “They were excited to see me. I was an adult who was coming to help. At GAP, I have experienced a lot of what the students have experienced. They search me out to talk. The kids really respect honesty. I don’t sugar-coat anything. I am worried about them and on Friday will tell them to be safe, be care-

Submitted photo

Sophan Nhea (left) with his mentor and colleague Mitch Walking Elk. ful. I just tell them that life will be easier if they get the diploma or even a driver’s license. I use my experience and story a lot. Many of them have my cell phone and once in a while I get calls at night. Work doesn’t stop.” To work at GAP, Nhea said you need to care and have lots of patience. “It takes lots of love and dedication for our kids, and GAP instructors help them in any way they can to succeed,” he said. “There is a small amount that don’t make it and that hurts.” Soto reported that 90 percent of seniors at the school graduate, “but keep in mind this is not a traditional school. Kids transfer in and out depending on their needs,” she added. Currently, 150 students are enrolled in the accredited grade 9-12 school. Of those, 30 are enrolled in the YALE

program (Young Adults Learning and Earning), an intensive six-month training program that helps students prepare for the GED test and begin training for “c-tech” certification, which is installing low voltage telecommunication wire cable. From there, students get one-on-one counseling and participate in group meetings on how to get a job: preparing resumes and cover letters, and practicing their interviewing skills. “GAP is becoming very intentional now in looking for business partners,” said Soto. “What do employers need their employees to be proficient at? What can GAP do to prepare their students to meet the requirements, whether it’s a certain level of math skills, or hands-on experience?” To acquire hands-on experience, GAP has a construction/tool room

where students make picnic tables and shelves, and learn safety procedures while using a variety of tools. They use what they learn to help repair a house down the street from the school. Recently, Rick Martagon, training director of Bricklayers and Allied Craftworkers Local #1, pioneered a hands-on bricklaying program for GAP students that was so successful he wants to repeat it next year. GAP classes vary in size from 5 to 14 students depending on the subject. The first part of the day is academics, followed by electives. GAP students are very involved in Cinco de Mayo and participate in just about everything on the West Side, said Soto. Nhea is just thankful to be part of the “GAP family,” he said, and to be able to touch as many kids’ lives as he can.

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Clean‘n’Press wins award

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The group of West St. Paul-based Clean‘n’Press drycleaning and laundry stores has received the Minnesota Governor’s 2010 Pollution Prevention Award, which recognizes businesses that demonstrate a superior commitment to waste and pollution prevention and resource conservation. The award comes on the heels of another award it earned last year: the Most Valuable Pollution Prevention Award, presented by the Nation-

Smith announces candidacy for MH mayoral race

Jill Smith, a former Mendota Heights City Council member, has entered the race to become the next mayor of Mendota Heights. She has lived in Mendota Heights since 1987 and has a bachelor’s degree in education from San Diego State University and a master of science in busi-

ness from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She is married and has two adult sons and two grandchildren. Smith, who retired last year as a real estate specialist in the corporate real estate department at 3M, served on the Mendota Heights City Council from 1991 to 1998, and has served on the Northern Dakota County Cable Commission, Metropolitan Area Sound Abatement Commission, Metropolitan Airports Commission blue ribbon panel to structure the

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Fresh produce from Youth Farm and Market Project

The West Side Youth Farm and Market Project and the Riverview Economic Development Association (REDA) have teamed up to bring locally grown organic produce to area residents. The produce is grown in a garden on the West Side and is harvested by local youth each day and transported by bicycle to El Burrito Mercado, 175 Cesar Chavez St., for sale. In addition, several area restaurants are including the produce in their dishes, including Boca Chica Restaurante, Bread, Coffee and Cake and Jerabek’s New Bohemian. For more information, call REDA at 651222-6347.

La Familia expo moves to Wellstone Center

The 8th annual La Familia Expo, being held Sat., Sept. 12, will be at a new location this year: the Wellstone Center/ Neighborhood House on the West Side. The event had been at the Xcel Energy Center since its inception but is moving to be closer to the heart of the most established Latino neighborhood in the Twin Cities. It will feature numerous displays, entertainment and informational sessions, including health and the environment. La Familia is produced by West Side-based Aguilar Productions and features attractions for the entire family. It is held in conjunction with Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15). Companies interested in exhibiting at La Familia should contact Aguilar Productions at 651-665-0633

Million Acorn Challenge

West Side-based Great River Greening is inviting school, community and neighborhood youth groups to collect as many acorns as they can through Sept. 30 to be used to help restore rare oak woodland forests along the St. Croix River Valley. The challenge — one million acorns collected — will culminate on Oct. 2, with a Great

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Community calendar

• Optimist Club - The Optimist Club of West St. Paul meets 4:30-5:30 p.m., the first and third Thursday of the month, at the West St. Paul Armory, 1346 South Robert St. The meeting is open to the public. The Optimist Club sponsors youth activities in West St. Paul. For more information, call 651-457-0917. • Veterans’ meetings - The RiverviewWest St. Paul VFW Post 4462 hosts monthly meetings at 7 p.m., the first Wednesday of each month, at the West St. Paul Armory. For more information, call 651437-4481. American Legion Post 521 also hosts monthly meetings at the Armory. Meeting times are 7 p.m., the fourth Tuesday of each month. • Rotary Club - The West St. Paul/Mendota Heights Rotary Club hosts a weekly meeting at

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N ews Briefs 7:30 a.m., Wednesdays, at Southview Country Club, 239 E. Mendota Road, West St. Paul. Each meeting features breakfast and a guest speaker. For more information, visit www.rotarywspmh. org. • Kiwanis Club - The Kiwanis Club of West St. Paul hosts a weekly meeting at noon, Tuesdays, at Southview Country Club, 239 E. Mendota Road, West St. Paul. Each meeting features lunch and a guest speaker. • Chamber of Commerce - The Dakota County Regional Chamber of Commerce, which serves West St. Paul, Mendota Heights, Eagan, Rosemount and Farmington, hosts a monthly meeting called “The Buzz,” at 7:30 a.m., the first Thursday of each month, at the Northern Dakota County Service Center in West St. Paul. Each meeting features networking, a guest speaker and refreshments. For more information, call 651-452-9872 or visit www.dcrchamber.com.

Volunteer opportunities • Ramsey County Community Human Services has volunteer opportunities for people age 18 and older. For more information, contact 651-266-4090 or volunteerservices@

Your community news and information source co.ramsey.mn.us. • Minnesota Literacy Council - Volunteers are needed to tutor adult learners, assist in an adult classroom and teach basic English and GED classes. For more information, contact Allison at 651645-2277, ext 219, or volunteer@themlc.org. • St. Paul Public Schools - Volunteers are needed to tutor elementary students in the St. Paul Public schools in reading and math. Under the guidance of a classroom teacher, volunteers assist students one-onone or in small groups. For more information, contact Connie at 612617-7807 or e-mail cerickson@voamn.org. Volunteers age 55 and older are eligible to receive free supplemental insurance, mileage reimbursement and other benefits through the Retired and Senior Volunteer Program (RSVP), sponsored by Volunteers of America of Minnesota. • The Minnesota Reading Corps is seeking  reading tutors for the 2010/2011 school year. The program provides free, one-on-one tutoring to children age three through third grade.  Minnesota Reading Corps members receive a living stipend, reimbursement for college (up to $5,350) and health insurance (for full-

time members). For more information or to apply online, visit www.MinnesotaReadingCorps.org or call 1-866-859-2825. • Neighbors, Inc., a social service agency serving Northern Dakota County, has a number of volunteer opportunities to assist local residents. For more information, contact volunteer@ neighborsmn.org or call 651-306-2145. • Building Blocks Tutorial, a program of Cherokee Park United Church, needs volunteer tutors to work with primary grade students doing activities that teach reading, math and writing skills. Tutors volunteer one or two days each week on Tuesdays, Wednesdays or Thursdays, from 3:45 to 5:45 p.m. The program begins Oct. 5. Tutoring takes place at the church, 371 W. Baker St., St. Paul. Orientation and training are provided. For more information, contact Jill Jackson, program director, at 651-228-1378 or buildingblocks@usfamily.net.

HHW collection

Ramsey County’s household hazardous waste collection site at Bay West, located near the State Capitol at 5 Empire Dr. in St. Paul, is open year-round. Dropoff is free for residents

of Ramsey, Washington, Dakota, Hennepin, Anoka and Carver counties with a photo I.D. If you drop off an old mercury thermometer, you can receive a new digital thermometer for free. You can also receive a free, reusable 2.5-gallon container to hold used motor oil. Items accepted include, but are not limited to, aerosol cans (no empty cans), paint (no empty or dry cans), antifreeze, paint stripper and thinner, batteries, fluorescent lights, used motor oil and oil filters, gasoline, kerosene, weed killer, products with mercury, such as thermometers, and wood preservatives. Appliances and electronics are not accepted. For hours of operation and more information, call the Ramsey County Recycling & Disposal Hotline at 651-633-EASY (3279) or visit www. co.ramsey.mn.us/ph (click on Home & Yard and then HHW Information & Collection Sites).

Rice Park tours

Rice Park tours are offered at 10 a.m., Wednesdays Sept. 1 and 15, at Landmark Center’s visitor information center. The tours feature an exclusive look inside each building surrounding the park, including the St. Paul Hotel, the St. Paul Central Public Library, the James Jill Hill Reference Library, 317 on Rice and The Ordway Center for Performing Arts. The tours are free but space is limited and reservations are required. To reserve space, call 651-292-3276 or email jhernandez@ landmarkcenter.org.

Flag disposal

American Legion Challenger Post 521 has a collection box in the vestibule at the West St. Paul Municipal Center, 1616 Humboldt Ave., for American flags that are torn, frayed or discolored. For more information, call John Ertel at 651-457-5597.

Ballet Tuesday

Landmark Center and St. Paul City Ballet will present Ballet Tuesdays at noon the second Tuesday of the month, Sept. 14-May 10, 2011, at the Landmark Center, 75 W. 5th St. The free performances will feature the St. Paul City Ballet’s Company of dancers performing excerpts from their holiday show, The Enchanted Toy Shop, The Sleeping Beauty and Cinderella. For more information, visit www. landmarkcenter.org.

‘Thrill Me’ at Lowry Lab

Lowry Lab Theatre, located at Fifth and St. Peter, will present “Thrill Me” Sept. 17-18. The performance is a joint faculty-student production from Gustavus Adolphus College. Brazen Theatre will perform “The Lady in Question” on Sept. 24-26 and October 1-3.

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St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 7


B usiness Village at Mendota Heights continues to attract new tenants Susan Klemond Contributor

D

espite the soft economy, the Village at Mendota Heights continues to attract new retail tenants and has firmly established itself as the town center for Mendota Heights. The 23-acre complex, which opened five years ago at the intersection of Highway 110 and Dodd Road, now includes a diverse mix of shops, offices, medical services, housing and a city park. “It’s not just retail, office and services, or housing or parking, it’s how the parts work together to create synergy,”

said Ross Fefercorn, who led Village development and now serves as chief manager of the Village at Mendota Heights, LLC and Mendota Heights Town Center, LLC. The Village also has provided an opportunity for the city and residents. “It’s a place for people to meet, work, live and interact,” said Mendota Heights City Administrator David McKnight. There will be more ways to connect at the Village in the next six months as six new office and retail tenants move in, including a café and wine bar called Mendoberri, scheduled to open in September.

“We’re seeing people come to the specialty tenants from all over the metro area,” said Fefercorn. Increasing numbers of area residents and other visitors have been coming for events offered at the Market Square Park, located at the Village’s center, including a summer concert series and holiday tree-lighting, as well as the county bike trail that runs through the development. According to McKnight, park events organized by the city of Mendota Heights — especially the concert series — have grown each year. “It’s a win-win situ-

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service providers gave the development high marks for its convenient location near major freeways and the airport, bus access, ample parking and easy building access. They said they are optimistic that their businesses will grow as more people find out about the development. Expert Hearing & Audiology’s desired demographic group can easily

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Your community news and information source owns the Olive Grove Olive Oil Company, said customers who visit other Village tenants now purchase from her store. Her olive oils are used by Tommy Chicago’s Pizzeria at the Village. The Olive Grove, which moved into the Village last October, offers a variety of olive oils, aged balsamic vinegars and other specialty foods and gifts. Jaeger’s neighbor, Julie Mast, said since she and her business partner Laura Rasmussen moved their needlework supply store, 3 Kittens Needle Arts, to the Village two years ago, they’ve gained many new customers. “It really has helped broaden our customer base considerably,” she said. The partners moved from a Lilydale location for that reason, and because of the Village’s look and feel, and higher traffic. Yet, Mast still hopes for more visibility. “Because it’s a relatively new development, it’s

than the 10th floor location in Eagan that Employee Benefits Group left almost two years ago, said Darleen Ivey, office manager at the company that offers retirement planning assistance. “Being in a tall office building, we used to go to clients,” she said. “Now, being in the open, it’s easier for clients to come to us. It all fell into place.” Synergy between Village businesses also has benefited some tenants. For example, Village dentists refer patients to each other and even bring them to each others’ offices, said Mike Mallinger, DDS, a practitioner at Mendota Dental Associates. The location also has enabled him to expand into oral surgery, implants and bone grafts. “We really appreciate having a state-of-the-art space and equipment,” he said. “My practice has expanded. It’s a big help to the practice and I think to patients.” Natalie Jaeger, who

taken a little time to get used to the fact that the development does exist,” she said. One thing that may draw Village patrons is that Mendota Plaza, the shopping mall across Highway 110, is undergoing a facelift. The Village’s exterior design is enhanced by tenants’ opportunity to create interiors that suit their style and function, Fefercorn said. “We’re a beautifully framed and stretched canvas, and you as the tenant get to paint on it,” he said. Mast said her shop space was a “cold, empty concrete shell” that Village developers helped her and her partner customize. Jaeger said the Village offered a space that aligned with her expectations. “I wanted an upscale store,” she said. “You want the façade to go along with what’s inside.” However, some tenants said management was not keeping up with

their needs and that they have had problems getting work done for their business space. “The only negative is they were great when we were preparing to move in but now it’s harder to get in touch with people to get things done,” Ivey said. Overall she likes the mix of business and retail, and the fact that the Village is a community. What it is not, is a mall, Fefercorn said, because it offers more than retail. “I know people are there on their nonshopping day,” he said. “There’s always traffic but there’s not always traffic at a shopping mall.” The variety offers great appeal, added Jaeger. “There’s a lot to do here,” she said. “It’s like a lifestyle shopping center. If you’re coming just for different stores, plan on visiting others. There’s going to be something close you are interested in.”

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West St. Paul City Council member Ed Iago and Community Development Director Jim Hartshorn await demolition of the former Pizza Hut restaurant at Lothenbach Avenue and Robert Street in West St. Paul. The site was recently purchased by San Francisco, Calif.based United Growth, which plans to construct an 11,000-square-foot shopping center. Panera Bread and Panda Express are the two largest tenants. Panera will occupy 4,000 square-feet and Panda Express 2,000 square-feet.

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St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 9


S ample St. Paul Xcel Energy Center Dave Matthews Band’s “Summer Tour 2010,” with special guests Black Joe Lewis & The Honeybears, is coming to Xcel Energy Center at 7 p.m.,

Your community news and information source

Wed., Sept. 15. Tickets are $65. The Xcel Center is located at 199 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul. For more information, visit www.xcelenergycenter. com.

Concrete and Grass Lowertown Music Festival

Photo by Connie Shaver

The fourth annual Concrete and Grass Lowertown Music Festival will return to St. Paul’s Mears Park Sept. 9-11. The festival will feature classical, indie rock, opera, hip hop, jazz, punk rock and blues on two stages. The festival kicks off on Thurs., Sept. 9 with a Club Crawl, featuring live music in a number of Lowertown clubs. The Mears Park performances will take place on the permanent stage and a second acoustic stage on Sixth Street, beginning Friday afternoon and continuing through Saturday evening. The music will continue after the park closes at 10 p.m. with additional performances on stages of neighboring clubs in the Lowertown Entertainment District. The Festival includes Thursday happyhour music beginning at 3:30 at various Lowertown clubs. Music begins in Mears Park at 5 p.m. on Friday and noon on Saturday. Food, wine and beer from restaurants in the Lowertown Entertainment District will be available for purchase. For more information, visit concreteandgrass.com.

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S ample St. Paul Children’s Museum “The Wizard of Oz,” the first officially licensed and sanctioned traveling educational exhibit based on the beloved film classic, is featured through Sept. 12. Visitors will journey through child-size reproductions of memorable sets from the movie, such as the colorful Land of Oz, the Witch’s Castle and Emerald City. Tickets are $8.95. The museum is located at 10 W. Seventh St., St. Paul. For more information, call 651-2256000.

Ordway Center for Performing Arts

“Evita” is featured Sept. 30-Oct. 31, at the Ordway Center for Performing Arts, 35 Washington St., St. Paul. This performance details the life of First Lady of Argentina Eva Perón, who was a legend in her time. A country girl, she rose to become the most powerful woman Latin America had ever seen—

Your community news and information source

a potent symbol of hope and change. The Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice opera is the powerhouse telling of her brief and fascinating life. Tickets are $19-$39. For more information, call 651-224-4222 or visit www.ordway.org.

History Center “The Beatles! A OneNight Stand in the Heartland”  is presented through Sept. 12 at the Minnesota History Center. The Beatles perfomed only once in Minnesota, on Aug. 21, 1965. This exhibit  features images taken by  Bill Carlson of frenzied fans, close-up images of the band and concert images, some of which have never before been seen.  The exhibit also tells the story of a young photographer who got the experience of a lifetime, a local concert promoter who chose not to advertise the concert for fear of crowds that might get out of control, and the lucky fans who did attend.

“Minnesota’s Greatest Generation: The Depression, The War, The Boom” - This exhibit features more than 6,000 square feet of artifacts, interactive displays and innovative multimedia experiences that reveal the lives and stories of the men and women who came of age during the Depression and World War II, and who went on to create the phenomenal postwar boom. The exhibition features first-person narratives in recorded interviews, images, film and audio. “MN 150”- Meet 150 people, places, events and things that sparked significant change within Minnesota and beyond. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and college students, and $5 for children ages 6-17. The Center offers free admission on Tuesdays, 5-8 p.m. For more information, call 651-2593000 or visit www.mnhs. org.

History Theatre Sample Night Live, a sampling of local productions, is featured at the History Theatre at 7 p.m. the first Wednesday of each month, except February. The format features 12 acts per night, including theater, film, dance, improv, visual arts, folk and opera. Tickets are $20. The History Theater is located at 30 E. Tenth St., St. Paul. For more information, call the box office at 651292-4323. “Dead Sea Scrolls: Words That Changed the World.” This exhibit, featured through Oct. 24, offers a rare opportunity to witness one of the greatest archaeological finds of the 20th century. The Dead Sea Scrolls include the earliest known Biblical writings. The 2,000-year-old authentic text fragments are steeped in scientific, religious and cultural significance.

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The Artists’ Quarter, located in the Historic Hamm Building at Seventh Place and St. Peter in downtown St. Paul, offers live entertainment throughout the month, including jazz bands, poetry nights and the popular B-3 organ night, held at 9 p.m. every Tuesday. For a complete schedule of events, call 651-2921359 or visit www.artistsquarter.com.

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Complementing the exhibit is “Arabia,” showing in the Omnitheater. This film offers a look at Arabia’s culture, history and religion. Tickets are $28 for adults and $22 for children ages 4-12 and seniors age 60 and older, or $34 and $28 respectively with admission to the Omnitheater. The Science Museum is located at 120 W. Kellogg Blvd. For more information, visit www.smm.org, or call 651-221-9444.

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R iver Connections

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America’s Great Outdoors Initiative

Our President wants you to explore the Mississippi River… and other natural amenities Tim Spitzack Editor

T

his spring, my son Jake, 14, and I took a weekend canoe trip on the Mississippi River and one of its tributaries: the Zumbro River. As we dipped our paddles into the river, it quickly became evident that the vast number of supplies we had along — tent, cooler, Coleman stove, etc. — would require us to use more strength in each stroke. We dug in hard until we finally found our rhythm, and once our muscles were warmed and cooperative we were able to enjoy the beauty of the landscape.

As we glided along a bushy bank, which cooled us from the warm afternoon sun, we were able to peer into the forest to see the different foliage, wildflowers and birds and animals that lived there. “Look! A bald eagle,” Jake called out as we approached the mouth of the Zumbro. We let the canoe drift quietly along as we closely examined our National bird, which was perched only yards away on a dead branch of a nearby tree. As we stroked further upstream, we saw another eagle, and then another. Suddenly, four bald eagles were playing hop-scotch with

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us as we paddled a handful of miles to a remote sandbar, which would be our campsite. That night, after we had scavenged enough driftwood for a campfire, we talked of the day. We lamented the difficulty of the paddle, we marveled at the number of eagles Photo courtesy of National Park Service we had seen and we spoke of the thrill of rounding The National Park Service offers many programs to engage the comeach river bend. As the munity in exploring the great outdoors, including a youth program flames flickered in the with Wilderness Inquiry and Urban Wilderness Canoe Adventure. night, we heard strange noises in the forest, fish The goal of the federal 80 percent of Americans was held in St. Paul on jump in the river, and program, which was re- live in cities and suburbs. Aug. 4. The event began secretly wondered about cently instituted by Pres- Coalition members, in- with more than 40 youth our safety from the wild idential Memorandum, cluding the departments paddling a voyageur caanimals. We were out of is simple: to get more of the Interior and Agri- noe to Harriet Island, the our comfort zone, and we people outdoors and to culture, the Environmen- site of a press conference. spark a national dialogue tal Protection Agency The youth are part of the were happy. A trip such as ours is on how we can protect and the CEQ, want to see Let’s Move Outside Juexactly what the organiz- and conserve our natural better access to our rivers, nior Ranger Program of ers of the new Great Out- resources. According to parks, lakes and other na- the National Park SerRiver's Academy Council on Environ- tional amenities, which vice, held in partnership doors Initiative hope Edge to the mental Quality (CEQ), in turn will hopefully with Wilderness Inquiry, Aprenda a través de la experiencia see happen more often. promote better conser- Inc. and Urban WilderGratis, Escuela de Secundaria Charter vation and preservation ness Canoe Adventure. Currículo riguroso, ambiental, basado en estándares practices. To get the ball A youth listening session Trabajo de campo semanalmente rolling, they are hosting was held at Mill City listening sessions across Museum in Minneapolis For minor injuries,Internados. your firstAplicar En Línea. the country. The first one that day, and the comcourse of action should 7 de septiembre, 6:30 p.m.

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Page 12 - St. Paul Voice - September 2010

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R iver Connections munity listening session took place at the Ted Mann Concert Hall in Minneapolis.

Regional discussions

Locally, the National Park Service has been hosting a Mississippi River Forum series since April 2009, which encourages discussion on how to protect and preserve the river. These discussions fit perfectly into this national initiative. Some of the topics have included the value of open space, improving water quality with innovative stormwater techniques, drinking the Mississippi River, and the Mississippi Makeover Project. For more information and future forum dates, visit http://www. nps.gov/miss/naturescience/rfmonthly.htm or call the National Park Service at 651-290-3030. The St. Paul Riverfront Corporation recently began its next round of discussions to update the Great River Park Master Plan, which is a planning document used to help connect people to the Mississippi River and to promote recreation and conservation. The plan was developed in 2006 as a way to link new and existing park land together, thus making the area “more natural, more urban and more connected.” “America’s Great Outdoors Initiative will play an important role in confronting the serious challenges our natural resources face today: climate change, air and water pollution, landscape fragmentation and loss of open space,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack in a prepared statement.  “This effort will bring Americans from across the country together to look for new approaches to protect our national treasures, and it will highlight the importance of working across ownership boundaries to restore and conserve both private and public lands in a way that recognizes that conservation and economic vitality are inextricably linked.”

Your community news and information source

Volunteering

If you are interested in helping preserve the river, contact one of the following area St. Paulbased organizations: • Friends of the Mississippi River - www.fmr. org, 651-222-2193 • Great River Greening www.greatrivergreening. org, 651-665-9500 • Mississippi River Fund - www.missriverfund.org, 651-290-3030.

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Fall Festival

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Sunday Sept. 26 (11 a.m. to 5 p.m.)

OLG Fiesta celebrates The 200th anniversary of Mexico's and Central America's Independence Sunday, Saturday, Sept. 19 Sept. 18 6 p.m.-midnight

Noon-6 p.m.

Music, food, dancing & queen coronation

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While other schools are cutting classes at the expense of your son’s education, we work hard to make sure we will continue to offer the following educational experiences: • Science labs • Mathematics options • Theology • World languages • Co-curricular athletics 6 p.m.-medionoche and activities, including: Cadets.com - Math Team - Chess Team - Quiz Bowl • Fine Arts, including: - Band, Theatre & Choir - Painting & Drawing ouse H n e p O - Computer Graphics er 7

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St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 13


N ews Briefs

Your community news and information source

Documentaries sought for ‘1968 Film Festival’

Amateur and professional filmmakers alike are invited to share their stories about one of our country’s most turbulent years — 1968. The Minnesota Historical Society is seeking 10-minute documentaries for its “1968 Film Festival” competition, which is open to filmmakers of all levels and includes $10,000 in prize money. Topics may be local, national, personal or political. Interested filmmakers must register at www. the1968project.org by Sept. 10. There is no fee to register. Films will be judged by a panel of historians and film professionals. Winning films and awards will be presented at the “1968 Film Festival,” held Sept. 25 at the Minnesota History Center. Registrants receive special discounts on the “Documentary Nuts and Bolts” classes offered by IFP-Minnesota

and access to and use of photographs, video footage and documents from the Society’s archives and collections. Award-winning films will be posted at www.the1968project. org. Winners from the 2009 Film Festival can be viewed there as well. “The 1968 Project” is developed by the Minnesota Historical Society in cooperation with the Chicago History Museum, the Atlanta History Center and the Oakland Museum of California.

Square Dancing for beginners

Dakota Grand Squares square dancing club will offer weekly square dancing for beginners starting at 7 p.m., Tues., Sept. 21, at the Salem Lutheran Church, 11 W. Bernard, West St. Paul. Participants will learn over 60 different calls that make up the basic square dance repertoire.  Lessons are structured to include singles, couples and families. Pre-registration is

encouraged. For more information, call 651-4542942. Dakota Grand Squares also holds dances the first Saturday of each month at St. John Vianney church, 1815 Bromley St., South St. Paul.

CNHS offers home improvement loans

A loan of up to $15,000 is available through West Side-based Community Neighborhood Housing Services for a variety of energy efficient home improvement projects, including insulation, windows, and furnace and water heater replacement. The property must be a single family, owner occupied home. Funds are available on a first come first served basis. For more information, contact Denise Gathman at 651-292-8710, ext. 214, or dg@communitynhs.org.

Mississippi River Duck Race

Neighbors, Inc., a so-

cial service agency serving Northern Dakota County, is hosting the Great Mississippi River Duck Race, 11 a.m.-3 p.m., Sat., Sept. 18, at Kaposia Landing, 800 Bryant Ave., South St. Paul. The event includes duck races, concessions, games and activities for all ages. Duck souvenirs and raffle tickets for a variety of prizes will be available for purchase. Raffle tickets are $1 each. All proceeds benefit Neighbors, Inc. programs. Rubber ducks will be available for adoption at $5 each or $25 for a Family Fun Pack of five ducks. Duck races will be held throughout the event, with prizes awarded for the winning duck in each race and the last place duck, the Lazy Duck. Volunteers are needed to assist with the event. For more information on this and other volunteer opportunities at Neighbors, Inc., contact volunteer@neighborsmn.org or call 651-306-2145.

DARTS appoints new officers

DARTS President and Chief Executive Officer Mark Hoisser recently appointed new leadership roles at the West St. Paul-based social service agency. Beth Wiggins, former vice president of community services, has been promoted to chief operating officer. She will oversee all DARTS programs, including practical services for older adults and their caregivers, transportation services, intergenerational and community engagement initiatives and volunteer resources. Keith Olson recently joined DARTS as chief financial officer and will lead its finance division, as well as oversee the administrative areas of HR, IT and facilities. “The restructuring allows effective management of operational shifts in DARTS’ transit services, helps facilitate targeted outreach that aligns the agency’s mis-

sion, brand and marketing strategies, and capitalizes on program strengths as we consider future opportunities and challenges,” said Hoisser.

Fantastic Sams in WSP hosts MDA fundraiser

The West St. Paul Fantastic Sams hair salon is selling decals for $1 and $5 through Sept. 3 to help send more kids to Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) Summer Camp. It costs about $800 to send a child to the camp. All funds raised will be delivered during the Sept. 6 MDA Labor Day Telethon. In exchange for a donation, guests are given a coupon for that same amount off their next salon service. “Small contributions can make a big difference in the lives of many kids in our West St. Paul community, and we’re thrilled to support this effort with the MDA,” said Christy and Gary Hanagan, owners of the

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N ews Briefs

Your community news and information source

West St. Paul Fantastic Sams. “We know that both our stylists and our local guests will eagerly support this effort during the last month of summer.” Guests who purchase a decal can write their name on it, and Fantastic Sams will display the colorful decals in the salon through Sept. 3. For more information, visit the salon at 1C Signal Hills Center in West St. Paul, or call 651-4559189.

St. Matthew Fall Festival

The Church of St. Matthew will host is fall festival 5-10 p.m., Sat., Sept. 18, and 11:30 a.m.-4 p.m., Sun., Sept. 19. Saturday events include tacos, flautas, refreshments, games and music. Sunday events feature a chicken dinner, children’s games and a raffle drawing at 3:30 p.m. Both days feature bingo, food, baked goods, jewelry, silent auction, pie, ice cream, root beer floats and more. The church is located at 490 Hall Ave., St. Paul. For more information, call 651-224-9793.

Student notes

Rose Schwietz and Jane Yackley of Mendota Heights were named to the dean’s list at the University of MinnesotaMorris. Daniel Linnell of Mendota Heights graduated from St. Cloud State University.

es, beginning Sept. 12, for children and adults. The adult classes include: “Unravels The Revelation Using the Prism of Law and Gospel” led by Pastor Richard Stadler, a DVD series on four parables in the Bible, led by Pastor Michael Albrecht, and “Digging Deeper as a Disciple,” a 12-session in-depth course on Christianity, taught by Pastors Stadler, Albrecht and Ralph Rokke. Worship services are held Sundays at 8 and 10:30 a.m. and a contemporary worship service is offered Mondays at 6:30 a.m. Saint James is located at 460 West Annapolis. For more information, visit www. saintjameslutheran.com.

Benefit for West St. Paul youth

The First Presbyterian Church of South St. Paul is hosting a benefit 2-7 p.m., Sat., Sept. 11, for the family of Willard Lee, 10, of West St. Paul, who was diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia in December of 2009 and continues ongoing treatment. Proceeds will help defray medical costs for the family. The event includes food, games, silent auction and a musical performance by the Sibley High School band. Area Girl Scout and Boy Scout troops will be helping with the event and church members are donating homemade candy, jams, pickles, produce and baked goods for sale. There will also be antique cars in the parking lot of the church, located at 535 20th Ave. N., South St. Paul. For more information, call the church office at 651-451-6223.

work and enjoy the local culture.  His book, “Stories from Ecuador,” is a collection of the most memorable people, places and moments from his year-long journey in Latin America. The title is available at amazon. com and barnesandnoble. com.

Free workplace English classes

South Suburban Adult Basic Education (ABE) offers Workplace English classes to adults ages 18 and older who want to enter the workforce and wish to improve their English language and job search skills. The classes are free and open to residents of ISD 197. To enroll or receive more information, call 651-4579441.

West Side Theater Project presents original show

The West Side Theater Project will present its original show “The Phantom of the Kitchen: a Promise is a Promise” Sept. 10-12 at the Paul

Humboldt staff member releases book

Tyrel Nelson, VISTA tutoring/mentoring coordinator at Humboldt Secondary School, has published a book on his experiences teaching English in Ecuador. After successfully completing the School for International Training TESOL Certificate course in Quito in October 2007, Tyrel remained in Ecuador to

St. James begins new Bible study series

St. James Evangelical Lutheran Church in West St. Paul is offering a number of Bible class-

and Sheila Wellstone Center for Community Building, 179 E. Robie St., St. Paul. When Martha’s kitchen radio show does a live broadcast from a neighborhood restaurant, the Phantom of the kitchen threatens to shut it down if her demands are not met. The show features music, mystery and love. Tickets are available at www. brownpapertickets.com/ event/124887. 

17 at the Jungle Theater, 2951 Lyndale Ave. So., Minneapolis. Tickets are $20-$35 and are available at www.jungletheater.com or by calling 612-822-7063.

Fall Rummage and Bake Sale

St. Paul’s United Methodist Women group is hosting its Fall Rummage and Bake Sale 9 a.m.-1 p.m., Sat., Sept. 18 at the church, 700 Wesley Lane, Mendota Heights. Proceeds will be used to fund mission projects locally, nationally and internationally. For more information, call 651452-5683.

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West Sider stars in ‘Glass Menagerie’

West Sider Alayne Hopkins plays the role of Laura Wingfield in Tennesee Williams’ classic, “The Glass Menagerie,” playing Sept. 10-Oct.

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St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 15


C ommunity Columns

West Siders have a commitment to their neighborhood that is hard to match. That is true of people who were born here and never left, and of people who left the area 50 years ago and live a thousand miles away. At Neighborhood House, one item in particular has brought this unique commitment and the history of the West Side into focus: a calendar of hand-drawn maps of the West Side as it was in the 1950s. Special attention is given to the old West Side flats. The Hebrew School on Kentucky Street and the Lafayette School on Fenton Street are prominent. Houses on

Your community news and information source each block carry family names — Chavez, Gerke, Dunaski on one block — pointing out the diversity of the neighborhood even then. Those schools, streets and houses are long gone, razed in 1962 to make way for an industrial park. Thanks to the calendar’s creators, Ted “Chick” Dunaski and Stuart Ward, memories of the old West Side have been brought back. And what memories: heart-warming and funny stories about Neighborhood House employee Keri Kowski’s late father, Joe, including stories her family has never heard; stories of hockey games on the Minnetonka playground. Memories of the “scary bridge,” remnants of which can still be found near Roosevelt School. It’s yet another sign of the tight-knit community that existed, and still exists on the West Side. That feeling of togetherness — of always being a West Sider, even if you live 1,000 miles away — is an essential part of the fabric of the neighborhood. That togetherness was on display again at the National Night Out celebration held on Aug. 3. An estimated 1,200 people attended; more than 2,400 burgers were served. City, county, state and national

elected leaders made their way through the crowds, sometimes at the same time as their challengers in the upcoming election. An Air Force Army Reserve helicopter landed on Gilbert de la O fields and attracted the attention of young and old alike. We could not have done it without help from our partners, St. Paul Housing Authority and St. Paul Parks and Recreation, with whom we planned the event. Both also donated carnival games to add to the festive atmosphere, and El Burrito Mercado gave away hundreds of ears of their famous roast corn. Guadalupe Alternative School lent their grill, and students and staff cooked with volunteers from Land O’Lakes. Thanks to these and all the other partners for making 2010 the biggest National Night Out we have ever hosted. Working together we continue to strengthen the community. You can share your memories of the West Side and make new ones by helping us plan the West Side Reunion, which will be held May 21, 2011. Join our planning committee and we’ll give you copies of the maps described above. To get involved, contact Lisa Lane at 651-789-2502 or llane@neighb.org. At the West Side Reunion we will unveil the Neighborhood House History Wall. If you have a Neighborhood House photo or memory you would like to share for possible inclusion on the History Wall, please let us know.

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Live Music in September September 3 .......................................................The Authorities September 4 ..................................... High Brow and the Shades September 10 ...............................Tim Sigler (Country), $5 cover September 11 ............................................. Big Toe and the Jam September 17 .........................Shayne Wyatt (Country), $5 cover September 18 .... High Noon, final performance at VFW, $5 cover September 21 .........................River City Jazz Orchestra, 7-10pm September 24 ......................... Lost Highway (Country), $5 cover September 25 .............................................Iron Horse (Country)

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Food & Drink Specials Lunch Special - 75¢ Corn Dogs, $1 small domestic tap beer, 11 am-2 pm Mon-Fri Sundays - Open mic and jam session, 6-10 pm. Build your own Bloodys @ Happy Hour prices, 10-2 pm, open until 10 pm Mon - Fri - Happy hour, 4-6 pmMon - Chicken wing night, 4-9 pm, 5 for $2, no take-outs Tues - $1.50 Burger Night; 2nd Tuesday Turtle Lake Casino Trip, 9 am, $5, get two free drinks upon return from casino Wed - Bar and Mega Bingo, 7 pm start Wed & Thur - 7" Coney Night, 2 for $5, biggest & tastiest Thurs - Karaoke, 8-close; Lipstick and Nail Polish Night, 9-close; $2 drinks and beers, 9 pm -close, $1 Jello shots Fri - Early happy hour, 1-4 pm; live music 9 pm-1 am, open until 2 am, Bomb specials, starting at $3, 10 pm-midnight Sat - Mega Tacos $3 and meat raffle,noon-4 pm, open until 2 am, Bomb specials, starting at $3, 10 pm-midnight Burger Kitchen - open Mon-Sat, 4-10 pm Hall rental & special packages available for fundraisers. Page 16 - St. Paul Voice - September 2010


C ommunity Columns

Your community news and information source

WSCO, Riverview Economic Development Association, and Youth Farm are hosting an open house and community dinner 5-8 p.m., Fri., Sept. 10, at West Side Citizens Organization, 127 W. Winifred St., St. Paul, to celebrate the partnership to restore the Canto al Pueblo mural on State Street. West Side residents are invited to stop by and see the mural work underway and meet the artist of the original mural, Pablo Basques. He will be there to describe the work, share stories about the original mural, and show residents how they can help him work on the restored mural mosaic. Led by REDA and hosted by WSCO, Youth Farm will be generously sharing and providing a free dinner for all attendees. Come and meet the many Youth Farm participants who have been learning and working with Pablo this summer. We hope to see you there. This Fall, West Siders will have the chance to save big on their energy bills. WSCO has partnered with the Neighborhood Energy Connection and Metro CERTs to offer energy efficiency workshops and home visits to our residents. Please join us at 6:30 p.m., Fri., Sept. 17, at WSCO to get ideas on saving energy and to sign up for a home visit where a crew will install basic energy saving materials. The program has many energy saving options to choose from, such as low flow showerheads, water heater blankets, programmable thermostats, weather stripping, faucet

aerators, and energy-saving light bulbs, to name a few. Participants have been saving an average of $120 per year based on what is installed. The home visit is available by contacting the Neighborhood Energy Connection at a cost of $50 to $80, depending on what is installed, but if you attend the WSCO workship and sign up for a Home Energy Squad visit there, the cost is just $30 for the same home visit. This great rate is available because of support from the Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund. Plus, as a special bonus for attending the workshop, you’ll get a personal energy report mailed to your house after the visit. You can find out more about the program by calling Lydia at 651-293-1708.

one who contributed, volunteered and participated in WSCO’s Old School West Side Pride Fundraiser. We couldn’t have done it without you! To learn more about current work and volunteer opportunities at WSCO, visit www.wsco.org, call 651-293-1708, or stop by our office at 127 W. Winifred St., St. Paul.

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West Sider of the Year nominations

WSCO is accepting nominations for West Sider of the Year 2010. West Sider of the Year is the highest award given by West Side Citizens Organization. It is given to a resident who exemplifies the spirit of community on the West Side. The recipient is recognized as a leader on the West Side and has engaged other residents in working together on behalf of the community, has helped as a volunteer, has either provided significant leadership on a major issue or activity during the past year, or provided service and leadership on community issues for numerous years. Previous recipients have also been residents who have made valuable contributions to the community, such as time, energy, awareness, organization, cooperation and communication. The honor and award is given to West Side residents only. If you would like to nominate a West Sider for the honor, pick up an application at the WSCO office or download it at www. wsco.org. The deadline to turn in applications is 4:30 p.m., Fri., Oct. 29. The WSCO Board of Directors selects each year’s recipient, and the honoree will be awarded at the WSCO annual meeting in November. Thank you to every-

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St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 17


H ome Improvement Winterizing your home

Your community news and information source

Small changes that can add up to big savings

B

y the time the first winter chill hits the air, most people have already dusted off their winter coats and prepared themselves for the brisk months ahead. For homeowners, however, readying for the winter involves more than just unpacking the cold weather clothes. Each year, homeowners overspend on winter utilities because they fail to make several small, but energy efficient, moderations to their home for the winter. Winterizing

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a home is quick, easy and inexpensive and can help homeowners trim a substantial amount off their wintertime bills.

Most homeowners are aware that hot air rises. Still, most homes have attics with poor insulation. Even if you spend little time in your attic, it needs to be well-insulated to keep heating costs down. A properly insulated attic could save homeowners a few hundred dollars over the course of a single winter season. A poorly insulated attic, however, will have the opposite effect.

able. Chances are, if past winters have found you routinely turning up the heat, you have cracks, gaps or holes throughout your house that are letting cold air in. Cracks around windows and doors are often the culprit when cold air enters a home. Fixing these cracks is inexpensive, and you won’t find yourself constantly overcompensating with the heating system. If your windows are on the older side, consider replacing them. While new windows can be a costly expense, in the long run the better insulation they provide will make them more than worth it.

• Don’t let cold air in.

• Don’t let warm air out.

• Inspect and repair all insulation.

Turning up mostat is not efficient way your home

the therthe most to keep comfort-

While cracks and holes around windows and doors let cold air in, there are other spots where

warm air also escapes a home. This is especially true of areas around electrical outlets on exterior walls. If these outlets are insecure, warm air will escape through them. Such areas are easily fixed with inexpensive caulking or simply by installing new outlet plates and making sure they are snug to the wall.

• Inspect your heating system-

Homeowners often fail to have their heating systems inspected, and the result can be higher heating bills thanks to dirty heating ducts and old filters. Once these items are cleaned and replaced, homeowners realize results almost immediately.

Another way to save money with your heating system is to use a setback thermometer. A setback thermometer can be set so you can heat the home while you’re there, but lower the temperature during the hours when there is usually no one home, such as during school hours or the work day.

We're at your Disposal If you're planning a home improvement project, or are simply cleaning out your garage or basement, give us a call. We can help you get rid of the waste that comes with any home or lawn project. Call us today, we accept it all. • Demolition Waste • Trash & Lawn Debris • Appliances

• Construction Waste • Old Furniture • Tires

Reasonable Rates! • Roll Off Boxes for Large Jobs • One Time Pickup Available • West Side Owned and Operated

Mon. - Sat. 8-5

Twin City Refuse

"The Original Recyclers" • 651-227-1549 An environmentally concerned company Convenient Location: 318 W. Water St., St. Paul

• Quality in a range of prices • FREE phone estimates • FREE on-site estimates • Wide variety of styles • Most doors in stock • Stock doors installed in one week or less Residential •We Support&

Commercial

Recycling

Bring us one item or a houseful. We accept it all! Page 18 - St. Paul Voice - September 2010

The Restore Saint Paul loan program helps homeowners preserve the character of their homes and the West Side neighborhood. Our loan program specifically targets exterior home improvements, visible from the street.

If you live in an older home, you may qualify for: • A $10,000 low-interest loan (requires matching funds) • Expert assistance in planning your restoration project

Contact us today for more information: 651-222-3049 or info@historicsaintpaul.org • www.historicsaintpaul.org Historic Saint Paul is a non-profit organization that works to celebrate our city's heritage, renew our neighborhoods and strengthen community.

Q U A L I T Y S I N C E 1 9 8 5

F ESTI REE MAT ES!

DAY SAME ICE! SERV Why Great Garage Door?

1

#

Service Quality Value

WE REPAIR... • Springs • Gears • Cables • Tracks • Photo eyes • Transmitters • Door adjustments • Key Pads • Circuit Board • Weather Stripping

16' x 7’ Raised Steel Panel Installed Pricing!!

$615 Non-Insulated $715 Insulated with Vinyl Backer 2" Thick Insulated $849 Full Steel Front and Steel Back Door removal/disposal extra. Exp. 9/30/2010.

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Lifetime Warranty

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F A S T F R I E N D L Y S E R V I C E


re

rs es

H ome Improvement

Your community news and information source

Five fall fix-ups to create gorgeous, green grass for spring

T

he leaves are falling, it is football season and the air is turning crisp. But that’s no excuse to ignore your lawn. Now is the time to get rid of weeds and bugs, nourish the grass for winter and plan for a beautiful spring. “Fall is the perfect season for fixing up your lawn,” said Rob Rogan, turf expert for United Industries, manufacturer of Spectracide and StaGreen products. “Many lawns have damage from the hot summer months, and you need to take steps to repair summer

Handyman Mr. Larry for Hire I do painting, repairs & cleaning of homes and apartments

damage and nourish the grass and root system for a long, cold winter.” Rogan recommends five simple tasks to protect the lawn all winter long and create gorgeous, green grass when the weather warms up again. • Let the leaves be your guide. When the leaves start to turn, it’s time to fix up the lawn. Don’t wait to plan for the lawn’s winter care until the first frost hits or the temperature drops below 45 degrees. It will be too late to tackle bugs and weeds, and the problems can multiply for the coming spring.

• Give the lawn a winter coat. Apply a winterizer lawn fertilizer. Winterizing the yard will strengthen the root system and give the lawn the vital nutrients it needs to rejuvenate from the summer and to survive the winter months. • Eliminate weeds before winter. Apply a weed control plus crabgrass killer. Weeds not only germinate in the fall, but they also can leave behind seeds that will germinate in the spring. Applying a weed control in the fall will kill weeds in the lawn and reduce the

Ask us about saving money on your energy and water costs, and the new 30% federal tax credit

Celebrating our 98th year!

number that pop up in the spring. • Ban the bugs. Apply an insect control. Fall weather conditions are ideal for insect survival. Once the temperatures get really cold, many of those insects will search for shelter in your home. Applying an insect control will keep your yard safe in the fall and your home protected in the winter. • Re-seed for a lush lawn. Fall is great time to patch up those bare spots or overseed the lawn. Use quality, weed-free grass seed to sow the lawn or fill in bare spots to avoid planting weeds from the start, since some grass seeds inadvertently have weeds already in the mix.

Four Generations of Personal Service!

ROOFING SPECIALIST Residential & Commercial

Roof Repairs

651-399-4304 Gutter Cleaning and Repairs

Take time this fall to nourish, repair and protect your lawn so it’ll survive the long winter.

Tear-Off • Re-Roof • Repairs

Since 1912 www.rascherplghtg.com

• • • •

651-224-4759

712 S. SMITH AVE. ST. PAUL, MN • LIC. 059432

• Professional Appraisal Services • Residential Contents & Antiques

612-729-5910

Shingles Shakes Sheet Metal Siding

• Flat Roofs • Tar & Gravel • Rubber Roofs • Call us about discounts

CALL FOR FREE EST. & STORM DMG. EVAL

Branch and Bough Tree Service & Landscape Care Pruning and Removals Shrub Maintenance Tree & shrub planting Landscape Design/Install ISA Certified #MN-0343 Climbing Specialists Licensed and insured

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LAWN SERVICE

Arboriculture rooted in excellent service Committed to sustainable landscapes

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No Free Gimmicks

Just Excellent Work at a Reasonable Price Total Lawn Maintenance Large or Small Landscaping Projects Tree and Shrub Maintenance Plowing and Snow Removal John: 612.328.6893

21 years experience Major Credit Cards Accepted

www.kernlawnservice.com

LANdSCApINg

Dahlstrom Construction State Contractors Lic. 3508

• Over 30 years experience • My name is on the business because I'm proud of our work For a FREE ESTIMATE, contact Kirk Dahlstrom at 651-455-2245

Bathroom Remodeling • Kitchen Updating Lower Level Finishing • Retirement Accessibility

Visit us at our NEW location! Carpet • Vinyl • Laminate Hardwood • Custom Area Rugs Cork • Countertops

Join us for our Apple Harvest Sale September 18 - October 16

31 years of Creating Beautiful Living in the St. Paul area 1061 South Robert Street, West St. Paul (just one mile south of our old store) 651-292-1011 • www.cblfloors.com St. Paul Voice - September 2010 - Page 19


! A Y O O B ay Labor D

Monday, Sept. 6th

An opportunity to meet your friends and have a great time!

Central Library events

Central Library Book Club will discuss “The Tattooed Girl” by Joyce Carol Oates at 10:30 a.m., Thurs., Sept. 9 at the library, located at 90 W. Fourth St. The History Book Club

 Serving begins at noon

City Passport senior citizen center, located on the mezzanine level of the Alliance Bank Building, is hosting the following events: Baby Hat Club, 1 p.m., Thurs., Sept. 9; Happy birthday party, 2 p.m., Mon., Sept. 13; Writer’s group, 10:30 a.m., Fri., Sept. 17; Current events discussion, 11 a.m., Fri., Sept. 17; Ladies tea, 2:30 p.m., Mon., Sept. 27; Free hearing screenings, 10 a.m., Tues., Sept. 28. Movies shown at 1 p.m. on Thursdays, include: “Avatar” on Sept. 2; “The Proposal” on Sept. 9; “Days That Shook the World 1940-59” on Sept. 16; “New in Town” on Sept. 23 and “Eric Clapton in Concert” on Sept. 30.

• Pull Tabs • Prize Raffles at noon • Bingo at 6:30 p.m. Proud sponsor of local youth activities - Lic. #01042 938 So. Robert St., West St. Paul 651-451-4070

Enroll Today!

The Central Library is accepting applications from interested parties to run a small café in the space of the former Zelda’s Café, located on the ground level near the front entrance. For more information, call 651266-7000.

City Passport events

Buckets available  Also serving hot dogs, hamburgers and corn

• Cultural Identity Emphasis • Youth Empowerment

will review “The Great Influenza” by John Barry at 2 p.m., Thurs., Sept. 23. The book explores the worldwide plague of 1918. Nancy Pearl, who has written about libraries and books, will appear at 2 p.m., Sat, Sept. 25.

• Community Leadership • For Students 16+

Multicultural Indigenous Academy

651.222.4900 A new path to graduation ...

Program of Minnesota Transitions Charter School • 133 East 7th Street - 4th Floor • St. Paul, MN 55101 Page 20 - St. Paul Voice - September 2010


SPV Sept 2010