Friday, December 31, 2010

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Turf Club

The Turf Club on University Avenue at Snelling has been entertaining music crowds since the 1940s changing its tune with the waves of music genres that have come and gone. There's always something interesting happening. Check out the calendar.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Old-fashioned fun

The golf course on the Mississippi at the Lake Street Bridge has some of the highest sliding hills in St. Paul. Plus you get this wonderful view of downtown Minneapolis from the top. I was out skiing but whole families were sliding and snowboarding the slopes at Town & Country.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Start yer engines

In sympathy with friends on the East Coast. I hope they are all managing to dig out.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Read a good book

Have some Christmas money to burn? Go to Common Good Books, owned by Garrison Keillor and located underneath Nina's Coffee Shop in the Blair Arcade, for knowledgable sales staff, a cozy subterranean atmosphere, and a quality selection of fiction and non-fiction.

Sunday, December 26, 2010


Chocolate lovers, don't miss the final days of the exhibit at the Minnesota History Center. The last display features this giant box of tempting chocolates and testimony from people the world over who have fond memories of celebrating special occasions - like holidays - with chocolate.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas cupcakes

Sweets Bakeshop on Marshall Avenue in St. Paul has some of the most talented cake decorators in town. Each season they create incredibly fun speciality cupcakes. You should have a few of these cute little penguins for your Christmas table.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Digging out the hydrants

The St. Paul Fire Department has put out a call for city residents to help dig out the fire hydrants that have been buried under mounds of plowed snow. A recent email came with a map of the city showing where the hydrants are. I had no idea there were so many - virtually on every corner. This one and its mate across the street are ready to do their duty.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

How many snow plows...?

So, really, how many snow plows does it take to keep a runway open? I guess that depends on how fast the snow is flying, and sometimes they can't keep up even here where we're prepared for it. I hope everyone who has to get somewhere by Christmas has a clean runway cleared of snow. Amen.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Tired of winter yet?

We are obsessed here in the Twin Cities with what this blast of snow has done to our complacency and smugness about climate change (used to be called global warming, but that doesn't really explain this). We've had some fairly easy winters lately albeit with some cold spells. Still, March 2010 had not one flake of snow, not one itty bitty flake in what is normally one of our snowiest months. We are making up for it now and it is hard!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Winter biking - maybe not!

Last week I went by this mound of snow with two bikes buried hopelessly (I thought) underneath. After the big blizzard a few days later, they disappeared entirely under what was then a mound turned into a mountain. Now they have reappeared as the city carts the snow piles off to unknown places, though somewhat worse for the wear  - and not really ridable.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Christmas break

Taking a pre-Christmas break far from the blowing snow. Be back in a few days.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Tree shopping

On the blizzard weekend lots of people stayed out of their cars, but in my neighborhood it's still easy to go shopping on foot.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Winter biking

The Twin Cities has become one of the premier biking cities in the nation but winter poses it's own challenges. And this was before the weekend blizzard.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Blizzard of 2010

It just kept snowing all day Saturday. Most shops along Grand Avenue closed early but Punch looks ready for business for those - mostly pedestrians - who braved the storm.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Flight canceled

The Minneapolis airport was a mess yesterday. At least half of all flights were canceled. The airport was eventually closed. Now comes the cold!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Mean drummin'

Normally the blur I get when taking photos in low light just looks like the subject is out of focus but I love the sense of energy of this photo of the 99ers' drummer.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Door to nowhere

"House, n. any place of refuge" is printed on one of the panes of the door that this student at Macalester is contemplating passing through.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Wa pa shaw

Like so many place names in Minnesota, one of St. Paul's main thoroughfares is of native origin.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

How much is that reindeer in the window?

The College of Visual Arts has this display in their window but your eyes can play tricks on you if you don't stay focused.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Sending some snow USA

See the English version of this scene here.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Sidewalk poetry #2

Even with the snow and ice, the poems come through.

A little less war,
A little more peace,
A little less poor,
A little more eats.

Sunday, December 5, 2010


It was the annual cookie baking get-together this weekend. I wonder how many pounds of butter we used.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

No turning back

The storm that dumped more than 7" of powdery snow on St. Paul means we are now truly in winter. No more pretending that we can put it off with a few more mild days or a bit of rain. It is here to stay.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Lee's Liquor Lounge

I know it says Lee's Liquor Bar but we all know it by it's more alliterative name. Tucked in an odd corner west of downtown Minneapolis near the new Twins stadium, the bar has apparently seen an upturn in its business since the Twins moved in. I say good for them. We love the music there!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Sidewalk poetry #1

Optimistically, I've titled this #1 because I want to find more of these around the city. With snow and ice they'll be harder to find, but they are worth the effort. 
Tipping The Scales

I don’t know enough
about balance to tell you
how to do it
I think, though,
it’s in the trying
and the letting go
that the scales measuring
right and wrong –quiver
and stand still

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Time travel

Nearly 200 years separate the period represented by the soldiers firing the cannon and the visitor to Historic Fort Snelling who doesn't want to damage his ears.
This photo is part of the City Daily Photo theme day for December 2010 - Time. To see thumbnails of other theme day photos, click here.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Did I say it was raining?

Macalester College appeared to belong to that long ago Twilight Zone episode where the "normal" world was distorted.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Shopping weekend

The Sears parking lot in St. Paul must have been the only shopping place in the city that wasn't jam-packed this weekend. How do they manage to stay open?

Saturday, November 27, 2010

MIsty lake

One of the first really cold days produces this misty affect over Lake Minnetonka as the cold air touches the warmer water. Later this winter when the lake is frozen we won't have this wonderfully impressionistic view of the lake.

Friday, November 26, 2010

The lucky ones

Here's a few that escaped the chopping block seen wandering down by the Mississippi River where it meets the Minnesota River.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

The palm trees are a giveaway. This is not St. Paul (for the 2nd time this month - am I breaking the City Daily Photo rules too much?) but La Jolla, California and their answer to Macy's T-day parade.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Modern day Minneapolis

Minneapolis didn't look anything like this when I was growing up. The government center (right of center with clock tower) was one of the tallest buildings downtown. Now it's dwarfed by skyscrapers whose names I don't even know.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Music, miracles, ministries

Coming off I-35W to the University of Minnesota's West Bank campus, this towering Jesus invites drivers and their passengers to join the love power. I don't know if this church actually still exists or is left over from the post-hippie days of Jesus people.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Urban wildlife

I spotted this little Downy woodpecker along the Mississippi earlier this fall shortly after watching an eagle soar along the river. Do eagles eat smaller birds? If so, this one was lucky to have been overlooked.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Cliquot Club

I love having my camera ready to capture some of the old ads that still exist on the sides of buildings in the Twin Cities. This one is in the Midway area of St. Paul.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Solo on the Mississippi

It's probably too chilly to do this now, but a couple of weeks ago a solo rower had the river all to himself one warmish afternoon. I love the pattern the oars leave on the water.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Wet snow

Winter's come too soon and too wet to the Twin Cities. Elderly maples and juvenile Japanese lilacs couldn't stand up to the weight of the snow.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

This is not Saint Paul!

No, indeed. This is not Saint Paul. But it is fall ... at the Horse Guard in London. I was surprised to see that fall colors and falling leaves are somewhat behind the Twin Cities even though London is much further north. Must be that cheeky Gulf Stream.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

It's a mad, mad, mad, mad Halloween

Zombies and vampires may be the latest Halloween fad, but being Joanie from Mad Men is more fun.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Specter of Milwaukee Ave.

This mysterious lady lives on (or does she haunt?) Milwaukee Avenue in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis (see more of Milwaukee Ave on Oct 17).

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Fall on the farm

The Oliver Kelly farm in Elk River is getting ready for winter. You can see the farm workers making hay, putting up pickles, storing vegetables. Life was different back then!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Harvest meal

The kitchen in the commander's house at Fort Snelling really knows how to dish out a good meal.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Late afternoon shadows

The low late afternoon sun is producing some long and deep shadows these days. This is at the Como Park golf course.

Thursday, October 21, 2010


 This window on a building of unknown use in residential Minneapolis is like those one-way mirrors installed in preschools where kids can see themselves but not their parents watching them. Was anyone watching me take the photo?

Monday, October 18, 2010

Down by the river...

Usually we see the Mississippi from high up on a bluff, but on a recent walk I got down to the water's edge. A placid fall morning looking south toward the Ford Pkwy Bridge.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Milwaukee Avenue

Hiding off busy Franklin Avenue in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis, pedestrian Milwaukee Avenue is a time capsule of turn of the century working class architecture (lovingly restored).

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Capitol coiffure

Looks like the state capitol building is wearing a hairnet. Don't know what they're up to, but the whole structure is scaffolded.