Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Recycle your Christmas Tree

Duluth, MN—Area residents are encouraged to recycle their fresh cut holiday trees on Saturday, January 3rd, 2009 as part of the annual Western Lake Superior Sanitary District (WLSSD) free “Treecycling” day. WLSSD will hold its annual Treecycling event on Saturday, January 3rd, from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm. Trees collected at the event will be beneficially re-used as fuel, to line paths or other purposes, while recovering valuable resources and saving landfill space.
Residents and businesses can bring trees free of charge to any of the following Twin Port Area locations: Miller Hill Kmart, Mount Royal Fine Foods, London Road Rental, Duluth West Toolhouse (on Commonwealth Ave) or the Superior Target store. These sites will be staffed only during the one-day event and residents are asked to please not drop trees at these sites on any other day. Abandoned trees can cause traffic and safety hazards at these public locations.
Those that can’t make it to the one day event can drop off trees at the WLSSD Yard Waste Compost Site until January 31, open daily from 7:00 am - 4:30 pm. In addition, Veit/Demolition Landfill Services (Gary), SAPPI Fine Paper (Cloquet) and the Moose Lake Compost Site are accepting trees through January 10. Waste Management Recycle America (Superior) and Demo-licious (West Duluth) will be accepting trees through January 31. Trees can also be brought to the WLSSD Materials Recovery Center (at the location of the old Rice Lake Landfill). The Materials Recovery Center is open Monday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm and Sunday from 12:00 pm to 3:00 pm.
Those bringing trees are reminded to remove all ornaments and tree stands before bringing trees to a Treecycling location. Wreaths, garland and other decorations made from evergreen branches are not recyclable and should be thrown in the trash.
Volunteers at the event will also be accepting donations of non-perishable food items on January 5th to help the local food shelves and to keep the spirit of the season alive by helping others in need.
The Christmas “Treecycling” sponsors and volunteers include Amberjack Tree Service, Carlton County Recycling and Solid Waste, City of Duluth, City of Moose Lake, City of Superior, Covington Transport Inc., Demo-licious, Harv’s Tree Service, Keystone Club of the Boys & Girls Club, Miller Hill Kmart, London Road Rental, Marshall School Student Volunteers, Minnesota Power, Mount Royal Fine Foods, North Country Waste/Cloquet Sanitary Service, Rick’s Tree & Stump Removal, SAPPI Fine Paper, Target - Superior, Superior Boy Scout Troop 213, VEIT/Demolition Landfill Services, Waste Management, Waste Management Recycle America and the Western Lake Superior Sanitary District.
Western Lake Superior Sanitary District provides award-winning wastewater and solid waste services to residents, businesses and industries within its 500 square mile legislative boundaries in Southern St. Louis and northern Carlton counties, and is a nationally recognized leader in pollution prevention.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Fiscal Manager wanted

Fiscal manager wanted for "The Hillsider", a non-profit newspaper.
Must live in Duluth.

A $250.00 stipend is offered.

Duties include:
Send out monthly invoices for ads placed.
Mail invoices and tearsheets to advertisers.
Collect checks and money, enter into Quick Books and then deposit.
Balance check book.
Collect expenses from editor.
Write out checks for cartoonist, proofreader, fiscal manager, editor's expenses, editor's pay and editor's commission.
Attend the board meetings.
Reconcile payments with the invoices.
Put together finacial reports for monthly board meeting.
Send out 1099's at the end of the year to all person's who received wages.
Put together needed paperwork for taxes.
Send out over due letters and statements.

Location: Duluth
Compensation: $250.00 per month
This is a part-time job.
This is at a non-profit organization.

Friday, December 12, 2008

More police officers needed: city council to decide Mon. Dec. 15

The police department’s future personnel plan for the next four years focuses on
three areas:

  1. Filling current vacant positions; some of which have been vacant for years
  2. Increasing staffing with the focus on putting personnel into positions that will have the most impact on community service and quality of life
  3. Offering developement through training, utilizing a new law enforcement center to establish our agency as a regional training destination in northern Minnesota
Read report

click here to read.

Contact your city councilor and councilors at large if you can not attend the Monday night city council meeting. Let them know you support more police even if it does mean $11 a month more taxes.

The Duluth Police Department currently has 139 officers and 26 full time support staff who answered 76,000 calls for service from the citizens and visitors to Duluth. In 1968, the Department had 142 officers and 15 support staff who answered 35,000 calls for service. Now more than ever, the Department is asked to deliver more services to more customers while the level of expected service is considerably higher. As a result, the Department operates at maximum capacity to meet the demands of our citizens and visitors. The patrol division is frequently overwhelmed with calls for service and investigative staff are unable to provide effective follow up on many cases throughout each year. The additional hiring of officers will ultimately result in call reduction, shorter call response time, more effective problem solving and ability to clear cases by arrest and hold offenders accountable.

411 W. 1st St.
Duluth, MN 55802

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Mn/DOT warns: watch out for frosty bridge decks, turn off cruise control

Motorists should be alert for frosty or icy bridge decks, overpasses and ramps now that near-freezing temperatures have arrived in the Arrowhead Region, according to the Minnesota Department of Transportation.

The roadways of bridges can freeze much sooner than the roadway because elevated highway structures are not insulated by the ground. Consequently, even though the main roadway may appear relatively safe, the bridge decks are likely to be frosty or icy, particularly in the early morning and late evening hours.

Another winter driving safety tip is to discontinue use of your vehicle’s cruise control during the winter months. On slippery highways and bridges, use of a speed control device has a great potential to cause rapid and catastrophic loss of vehicle control when the cruise control kicks in on slippery roads.

Motorists should log onto or call 511 for current road and weather conditions.

Economics, staff changes forces local non-profit to continue with volunteers and part time staff

East Hillside Patch
announced this month that it will continue to serve the community despite some recent staff departures. As a result of these departures and the current economic climate, the organization will operate mostly through volunteers and a social work intern. Its three biggest projects are the Health Equity Project, a free after school program named Mind 2 Mind and the needs assessment survey.

Changes in Patch
Cindy Donner, executive director, has accepted a teaching position at the College of St. Scholastica and Jennifer Zapata, youth director, has moved to California to be closer to family. For economic reasons, Patch’s board has chosen not to fill these vacancies.
Instead, the board of directors will take a hands-on role in carrying out administrative duties, continuing the Health Equity Project and supporting Jahna Hardy, the recently hired part-time Youth Program Director, for its Mind-2-Mind program. Tamara Miskovic, an UMD MSW intern, will assist with agency-support duties and complete the neighborhood surveys that began last year.

Extra volunteers needed
As a result of these changes, the Patch office won’t be open on a regular basis any longer. Other than that, the agency continues to seek extra volunteers, more funders and board members. Patch’s focus remains on community development, social justice and youth programs. The agency has secured funding to assist board members in board development and strategic planning, which will begin in the upcoming months.
“Patch is just like the East Hillside and Endion neighborhoods it supports – resilient,” said Mona Cheslak, Patch board member.
For more information about East Hillside Patch please leave a message at the office, 218-728-4287, or e-mail

Social work intern
If someone comes knocking on your door to ask what type of needs you have, please take time to answer the questions. That’s the sentiment of Tamara Miskovic, a social work intern at East Hillside Patch. Miskovic said, “Please participate because it’s for you!”

“Please participate because it is for you!”
Tamara Miskovic
on neighborhood needs survey

She said the biggest problems she sees in the East Hillside neighborhood are health care and childcare. She also said young single mothers need support groups and all neighbors need to know what is going on with in the neighborhood and how to network with each other.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Duluth American Indian Commission listens to concerns about barrels of waste in Lake Superior

Caption: Jean Buffalo addresses the Duluth American Indian Commission about the need for more research and risk assessment of barrels of waste dumped into Lake Superior. To the left is her granddaughter, Mayeyna Bressler. To the right is DAIC member Anthony LaDeaux.

By Naomi Yaeger-Bischoff
With concern for the safety of all who live, work and play along Lake Superior, Jean Buffalo, a member of the Red Cliff Natural Resources Damage Assessment Committee, addressed the Duluth American Indian Commission to discuss investigating the toxicity levels of barrels of waste that were dumped in Lake Superior. Between 1959 and 1962 the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers dumped 1,457 barrels of waste generated at the Twin Cities Army Ammunication Plant near Duluth.

Buffalo had her granddaughter at her side to emphasize that she learned at her elders’ knees the importance of communication, and that future generations need to be protected from environmental harm.

The Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa received a $600,000 grant from the Department of Defense and has contracted with EMR, Inc., a national environmental consulting firm, to find the location and study the toxicity of the barrels of waste. Suzanne Anderson, a geologist with EMR’s Duluth office, gave a presentation on this summer’s research to determine the location of the barrels.

Buffalo stressed that open communication with all stakeholders (those living around Lake Superior) is paramount. She said that when her tribe ceded their land in the treaty they also took on responsibilities, which they take seriously. One of those treaty responsibilities is to be a watchdog for the health of the land and water along Lake Superior.

Duluth city council member, Jay Fosle was a guest during this presentation. Fosle expressed concern and is interested in the next step of determining if the barrels are toxic and what to do about it for the safety of all. On Sept. 29 Buffalo met with Duluth Mayor Don Ness.
Joy Dorcher, co-chairman of the DAIC, said she appreciated the respectful way the Red Cliff tribe is consulting with other groups such as cities, states, and tribes both in the United States and Canada. She added that if tests prove the waste is toxic there should be no problem getting funds from the federal government to further research and mediate this problem.

Buffalo provided this statement to The Hillsider:
This is in remembrance of an “ancestor”, Kitchie Bezhke (Chief Buffalo), Anton Buffalo, Antwine Buffalo:
And all that came before
You opened
A door
Because of you
Change will come...
Gii go wa ba miin (until then)


Nov. 9 & 23 Rehearsals for Puzzle Peace
Youth Choir 2-3 p.m. Peace UCC Church,
1111 N. 11th St. We are planning to sing 1-2
times in Nov. and Dec. and will accept new
singers through Nov. 9. For further
information, call Peace UCC, 724-3637 or
director Cyndi, 728-9774.

Nov. 11 “Examine the Field of Medicine”
event for high school students 6-8 p.m. at the
UMD School of Medicine. 6-7:15 Panel
Discussion in Room 142; 7:15-7:40 Tour of
UMD School of Medicine; 7:40-8
Questions/Answers with Physicians. The
Lake Superior Medical Society is hosting this
event to bring some insight into what it is like
to go through medical school. Don’t miss this
chance to examine the myths, realities, and
rewards for becoming a doctor! This event
has limited space and is free to high school
students interested in a career in medicine.
Call 727-3325. Register by Nov. 5.

Nov. 11 Veterans’ Day March begins at 9:30
a.m. from the Duluth Armory and ends 10:30
a.m. at the Duluth Depot (St. Louis County
Heritage & Arts Center). City of Duluth
Ceremony begins at 11 a.m. at the Depot.
Nov. 13 Lunch with the History People
Craig Grau presents “The 2008 Election”
12-1 p.m. St. Louis County Heritage & Arts
Center (Depot).
Nov. 13 "Sharing Indian Culture from East
and West” Registration is at 5:45 p.m.; dinner
at 6:00 p.m.; program at 7:00 p.m. Unitarian
Universalist Congregation of Duluth, 835 W.
College St. All are invited to a sharing
between Anishanabe people and East Indian
people. Come and enjoy two beautiful
cultures with food for body and spirit. The
menu includes American Indian foods and
East Indian foods. Skip and Babette Sandman
will speak about the Anishanabe culture and
spiritual practices. Indra and Chandra
Mehrota will speak about East Indian culture
and Hindu spiritual practices. $15, no charge
for children 12 and under. Free childcare will
be provided. Sponsored by the Arrowhead
Interfaith Council. Contact Erik at or phone 310-0966.

Nov. 14 Family Day at the St. Louis County
Heritage & Arts Center 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at the
Depot. Admission to the museums is $2 per
person and includes activities for the kids.

Nov. 16 Benefit for the KAKO Foundation
"Music for All" Program 3 p.m. Mitchell
Auditorium at The College of St. Scholastica.
Sara Thomsen and The Echoes of Peace Choir
Concert with guest storyteller Elizabeth
Nordell, violinist Rudy Perrault, and Three
Altos. $12. Co-sponsored by CSS Center for
Just Living and International Student Club.
For more information about The KAKO
Foundation call 724-3484. For more
information about this concert or about the
Echoes of Peace Choir call 525-6500.

Nov. 17 Duluth American Indian
Commission 5 p.m. City Hall Room 402.
Agenda: Update from Community Police
Officer; Work Plan Schedule for 2009

Every Monday Duluth Laughing Club
12:10-12:20 p.m. Duluth Civic Center in front
of the St. Louis County Bldg.
Mondays-Thursdays Kid’s Café After
School Program 3:30-5:30 p.m. Damiano
Center Room 205. Free meal and activities
for children and their families. Children under
6 must be accompanied by adult.
Each Saturday Afternoon Gallery 2:00 p.m.
Tweed Museum of Art, UMD. Free and open
to the public., 726-8222.
1st Tuesday East Hillside Community Club
6:30 p.m. Grant Rec. Center, 901 E. 11th St.
1st Thursday Central Hillside Community
Club/ND 5 6 p.m. Central Hillside Center, 12
E. 4th St.

1st Thursday Childbirth Collective Parent
Topic Nights 7 p.m. Peace Church, 1111 N.
11th Ave. E. Call Emily at 393-7042.
2nd & 4th Mondays Arrowhead Stamp Club
of Duluth MN and Superior WI 7 p.m. First
Presbyterian Church, 300 E. 2nd St. For more
information call Howard, 722-9016.

2nd Tuesday Free mini ceilis with instruction
7 p.m. at Carmody's Pub, 308 E. Superior St.
Cash bar. FFI call 728-1438.

2nd Saturday Ceramics Sale 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Duluth Art Institute great room in the Lincoln
Building, 2229 W. 2nd St.

2nd & 4th Sundays The Northland Anti-War
Coalition 2 p.m., Chester Creek Café, 1902 E.
8th St.

2nd & 4th Mondays Arrowhead Stamp Club
7 p.m. First Presbyterian Church. 722-9016
2nd Tuesday The Twin Ports Coin and
Currency Club 7 p.m. Rainbow Center
3rd Tuesday Campus Neighbors 7 p.m. Grant
Rec. Center, 901 E. 11th St.

3rd Wednesday Antique Appraisal noon-3
p.m. in the Rotunda of the St. Louis County
Heritage & Arts Center (Depot). Free.

3rd Thursday Duluth Superior Green
Drinks 5-9 p.m., Carmody's Irish Pub, 308 E.
Superior St. Every month people meet up for
informal environmental discussions with
people who think & act in concern for our
ecological future. You do not need to drink
alcohol to attend. Email:

3rd Thursday Park Point Community Club
7 p.m. Lafayette Square, 3026 Minnesota Ave.

4th Saturday Gloria Dei Community
Breakfast 9-10:30 a.m. Gloria Dei Lutheran
Church, 219 N. 6th Ave. E.
Submit your calendar events to Mona: or 724-1193.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Fall Rally Sunday at First Lutheran

Come be a part of the kick-off of the education year at First Lutheran Church! Rally Sunday will be filled with activity, learning, celebration, and blessing for the whole congregation as we get ready for another year of growing in faith as the people of God.

Registration for Sunday school (age2-grade6) will take place in the Parish Hall from 9:45-10:15 a.m. During registration, there will be activities to do in the Parish Hall, information to check out, and cake to eat! From 10:15-10:45 a.m., we will have a Sunday school “open house”. This will be a time to check out classrooms, meet teacher and have fun.

Also, during the education hour, 9:45-10:45, there will be a “Ministry Fair” with information about various ministry areas of the church. Come learn more about what is happening at First Lutheran and how you can participate and grow in faith.

Taize Worship held the First Sunday of each month at 5:00 p.m. at First Lutheran Church, 1100 E Superior Street, Duluth, MN

Blessing of the Backpacks – Preschoolers to post-grads bring your school backpack, book bag to First Lutheran Church, 1100 E Superior Street, on Sunday, September 7 at either the 8:30 or 11:00 a.m. service for a special blessing for the school year.


Animal Allies Humane Society’s September goal is 100 cat adoptions

Animal Allies Humane Society (AAHS) of Duluth, in an effort to reduce the euthanization of healthy, adoptable cats, aims to find homes for at least 100 cats during the month of September by offering two cats for one adoption fee of $90.

“Cats are naturally social creatures,” says Linda Baumgarth-Cadotte, AAHS Program Director. “They love having a buddy, and adopters can double their pleasure by providing a loving home and saving two lives.”

In September of 2007, 44 cats were adopted, and 74 had to be euthanized. The vast majority were healthy, adoptable animals that would have made great pets. This September, Animal Allies will strive to find loving homes for at least 100 cats, and reduce the number of cats that have to be euthanized.

“There is an annual flood of cats from May to October,” says Betsy Bode, AAHS Shelter Manager. “We hope to save as many cats as possible during this adoption drive.”

All cats in the Animal Allies adoption program are spayed or neutered, microchipped, and have been examined by a veterinarian, with all age-appropriate vaccinations. To view the cats in the Animal Allies adoption program, go to, or visit the City of Duluth Animal Shelter , 2627 Courtland Street , Monday – Saturday, Noon – 4 pm.

Animal Allies Humane Society strives to ensure a lifetime of loving care for every pet by reducing overpopulation, increasing adoption, and fostering humane values. AAHS is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization. All donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Movies in the Park, Shrek The Third

September 5 Shrek The Third PG 7.55 PM

Twin Ports Outdoor Movies and Audio Visual Resources are giving Movies
in the Park participants the chance to win the DVD's of all the films
shown this season, including special editions and bonus films. For
info log on to:

Please call, after 6:00 PM, the Twin Ports Outdoor Movies Hotline at
715-392-3480 or log on to to check for

Friday, August 29, 2008

Clokey’s response to Hillsider Questionnaire

1. Healthcare
The first thing I would do is recognize the fact that perhaps enough is being spent on this issue, but perhaps not serving those who truly need it. Access is available, but if we continue to have doctors and dentists who can selectively say that they will not accept an MA patient adequate access no longer matters. It is understandable that healthcare costs have gone through the roof. The money however is simply ending upon the hands of the insurer or the pharmaceutical companies interested in making a buck. Those funds need to be returned to the provider and should result in quality care for all in need of medical and dental services.

2. Livable wage
The first thing would be to do whatever we could to promote HEALTHY job growth in our community. First, YES we should be able to help those employers to help their employees. Second, I would focus on the quality of jobs coming to our area vs. quantity. 300 new jobs look great on the front page of a paper. But if all those jobs only pay $6.50, then what are we really telling our community?

3. Federal and state aid to cities, and taxes
I can offer TRUE FOCUS ON INVESTMENT...As for youth; cuts continue to be made across the board when it comes to youth. Then quite often we hear the crime among youth is on the rise. Funding that can be restored to such program as the family resources centers and similar programs are vital to those across our state. When centers like ours where shut down statewide, it literally disconnected families and youth, many in vulnerable situations.
I do believe in tax caps for seniors with limited and fixed incomes. The idea that we, at any level, should see it necessary to keep asking more from those who simply do not have it, simply makes no sense to me.

4. Racial inequities
WE ADDRESS THE INEQUALITIES HONESTLY...there are so many out there who have been sucked into the idea that women are not as smart, or blacks always commit more crimes, or native americans always drink.... I have heard them all. Until we as community recognize the value and blessings that we have in our neighbor, equality will never happen. Until we have a true enforcement tool attached to employment and fair housing, discrimination will happen. I would promote this legislation in St. Paul as well as continue to encourage those in our community already taking an honest and sincere these issues are solved best when they start at home and in the heart.

Brandon Clokey, DFL, statement

My name is Brandon Clokey, and quite simply, I want to be your next State Representative. I am a very proud father of three wonderful children and have been a small business owner for over twenty years. I am a common citizen with real life experience and an appreciation for those around me. I realize there are those in Duluth that will tell you that change is good, while others will say that we are fine living life as we have, and it too is good. While I truly understand the value of both, I am rarely identified as either. Many people who know me are aware I am rarely comfortable with the status quo. My excitement comes from seeking opportunities to improve our community and all of us within it.

I currently advocate for and promote healthy families and parent involvement as the Outreach Coordinator for the Duluth Fathering Project. Other local relationships have included working full time with homeless families through Churches United in Ministry and client advocacy for those in housing transition with Reed’s Board and Lodge facilities.

Throughout my adult life, I have been no stranger to public service. My recent affiliations include being the two-term Board President for the Hillsider Community Newspaper and serving a rare second term as Board Chair for Life House Center for teens and at risk youth. Prior to moving to the Duluth area, this same passion led to my involvement with other boards. This includes the Arrowhead Economic Opportunity Agency (AEOA) and testifying before the K-12 Education Committee regarding the connections between our low-income children and education.

My purpose has been, and continues to be, to serve, enable, and empower those who are not often heard within our communities. The truth is…not only do many in our community not have a voice or presence, they are also not recognized for their abilities and strengths. Strengths that could be a great asset to all of us, if only they were being heard, seen, and recognized.

These experiences have given me the ability to provide sensible, common sense leadership. This same leadership is guided by the concept of doing what is right and SERVING ALL who we are able. This is why I want to be your next State Representative.
Brandon Clokey

Reinert’s response to Hillsider Questionnaire

1. Health care
Minnesota needs universal health care. We must lead on this issue and stop waiting for a Federal solution. It is stifling our economy, choking local governments, and leaving a wide variety of people (including myself) without health care. I endorse the Minnesota Health Plan introduced by Sen. John Marty and will actively support it as a Legislator. It addresses the insurance side of the equation and makes health care affordable by getting everyone back into one large health care pool. It ensures all Minnesotans are covered, provides for quality care including mental, chemical dependency and dental coverage, and allows patients to choose their own providers.
2. Livable Wage
I support a statewide Living Wage Ordinance and Business Subsidy Act similar to the one I have voted for in Duluth. I support requiring projects to create at least one full-time living wage job for each $25,000 of public business subsidy. A subsidy is a grant, loan below market rate, contribution or assistance that is given to a business intending to create or retain jobs. Currently that living wage is defined as 130 percent of the Federal Poverty Standard for a family of four ($13.25 per hour for 2008) or, if the employer provides basic health insurance benefits then 110 percent of the federal poverty rate for a family of four ($11.21 per hour for 2008).
3. Federal and state aid to cities, and taxes
The federal government must restore cuts to the Community Development Block Grant program and begin reinvesting in America. And Gov. Pawlenty needs to remember there IS more to Minnesota than just the suburbs and restore cuts to local government aid. Both CDBG and LGA are critical to basic services local governments in Minnesota, like Duluth, provide. The drastic cuts to both are being felt by all of us. I also support regional cities across Minnesota joining together in the Legislature to change the laws that stop us from doing simple things like charging non-Duluthians who use our library a small fee for a library card.
4. Racial inequities
We should continue existing affirmative action hiring programs. They are needed. Yet the only lasting way to address issues of racial and cultural inequities is through strong public education. We must redesign Minnesota’s funding of education. Reliance on local levies is creating schools of “haves” and “have nots.” Minnesota should also create a program that allows residents to attend a public college for four years free if they maintain a “B” average or above in high school to encourage more at-risk students to remain in school. And I support continuation of MHFA programs to provide incentives for minority home ownership. Owning a home helps build personal wealth as well as economic security.

Roger Reinert, DFL, statement

In order to be a strong state, Minnesota needs strong cities.
The reason I am running for this MN House seat is that the difficult issues we are facing here in Duluth all require St. Paul’s help, partnership or permission in some way. Every major issue - solving retiree health care, improving our streets, stopping sewer overflows, fixing the zoo, restoring parks and library services – requires us to be successful at the Capitol. We need someone in St. Paul who knows these issues inside and out. I do. That’s why I’m running.
These are serious times. This election gives us the opportunity to send someone to the Legislature with proven legislative experience and a record of accomplishment. A leader who can work with people they may not agree with in order to get things done. A qualified Representative who is ready to hit the ground running in January and fight for Duluth.
In the Legislature I will be an advocate for our natural resources. I believe we must restore Minnesota’s position as the nation’s leader in education and it’s about time everyone had affordable health care. Our infrastructure needs attention now more than ever. I’ll make sure that happens. And, with experienced leadership and a focus on our core industries, we’ll continue attracting good living wage jobs to our region.
Specific initiatives I will pursue in the 2009 Legislative session are:
- Funding for the holding tanks necessary to stop our sanitary sewer overflow problems
- A solution to the Great Lakes Aquarium that makes the state a partner
- Fully funding local government aid to Duluth and St. Louis County
- Increasing Municipal State Aid to Duluth for street repairs
- Funding the necessary training dollars for Duluth Police and Fire
- Establishing Duluth to Minneapolis passenger rail
- Connecting the Munger and Lakewalk trails
- Coordinating state assistance for the next phases of the Heritage Hockey Center
Thank you for being involved in this Primary election and thank you for caring about the future of Duluth.
Roger Reinert, DFL Candidate, MN House 7B

Cole’s response to Hillsider Questionnaire

1. Affordable health care
I believe that our whole health care system is too profit oriented and not focused on developing healthy living. A single payer system needs to be developed that allows everyone to have health care.
2. Livable wage
I do support raising the minimum wage to at least $9 p/hr. Is that a realistic amount is all dependent on the ability of a business to still make a profit and stay in business. Providing incentives to encourage business to pay livable wages is more cost effective than subsidies. Working to better educate/train workers is a key to motivating employers to pay a livable wage. Both the worker and employer will benefit from an educated workforce some employers do not understand or put value on educating workers. I will work to create laws that will require employers to put a higher value on education/training.
3. Federal and state aid to cities, and taxes
I believe we as individuals need to take more responsibility in choosing to help others. We live in a very selfish society and the government is not the solution to pay and help. The government can create laws to encourage the private sector and individuals to help and there are business models that would be win/win for all parties affected by government cuts. Costs are going up on everything and creating partnerships between nonprofits, business, and government is the best way to solve our problems.
4. Racial inequities
Educating the public about these unfair racial inequities is a start, creating tougher laws, and creating livable wage jobs. There are other solutions out there which will require me educating myself about them and talking to more individuals about better ways to solve the problem.

Jay Cole, statement

“Life Is Choice” Duluth
Duluth needs a leader who will work to get behind the Values most important to the taxpayers of Duluth. I believe in the values of fairness, responsibility, equality, and equity for all.
1. I believe that we need universal/single payer health care in Minnesota.
2. Housing is important to allow individuals stability in their lives.
3. Small business is the foundation of our economy and we need to reduce government regulations.
4. I believe we need to be responsible for our environment and not abuse it with chemicals.
5. Our schools need to be accountable and truthful to the Taxpayer and parents more involved in the schools.
6. Every individual has a right to livable wages.
7. I believe in working to get citizens involved in the political process and government decision-making.
8. I believe individuals need to be held accountable for decisions they make that affect others.
9. I believe biblical values are the foundation to successful living.
Contact: Phone 218-213-3939 or Email:

Marshall Stenersen, DFL statement

I oppose the “Red Plan,” primarily because the citizenry of Duluth was not allowed to vote on the issue. The “Red Plan” as presented, makes bad use of a law designed to help cities of the first class, namely Minneapolis, St. Paul and Duluth, address safety and desegregation problems. The “Red Plan” is too extensive and too expensive. I fear that the manner in which the “Red Plan” was forced on taxpayers will leave, not a chilling, but a freezing effect on the passage of future operating levy referendums, which will inevitably result in teacher cuts, larger class sizes, and program cuts for our children.

To date, the largest bond issue brought under this statute was for the St. Paul School District, which is several times larger than the Duluth School District – and that bond issuance was for under $50 million – six times smaller than the Duluth bonding issue.
The school district, in my mind, even if it is conceded to be in technical compliance with the law, is certainly in violation of the spirit and intent of the law. This plan seems to be more about buildings than it does about desegregation and safety.

I promise to introduce legislation at the 2009 session to address language which will clarify the law to make it consistent with its spirit and its intent. Certainly bond issues of this size should require a vote of the citizenry, no matter its intent. Depending upon actions of the ISD 709 School Board between now and the end of the year, I pledge to meet with my area legislative colleagues in St. Paul, to determine a prudent course of action. However, I steadfastly refuse to make pledges on this issue at the behest of any organization, or spokesperson thereof. My pledges are based on my personal understanding of the myriad of issues and problems involved with the “Red Plan.”

Stenersen’s response to Hillsider Questionnaire

1. Affordable health care
First of all, I would support Sen. John Marty’s bill at the legislature. Beyond that however, I believe we must move towards a single payer system in the State of Minnesota. I am hopeful that our health insurance crisis will finally be addressed at the Federal level. However, I am unwilling to place a bet on success in Washington D.C. We can begin in Minnesota. At one point, not too long ago, Minnesota was an innovator. We can be bold and innovative once again, and begin the movement towards single payer.
2. Livable wage
As a general rule, I oppose corporate welfare of any sort. However, since that is the way jobs are generated these days, I would support incenting business to provide living wage jobs. However, living wage needs to mean something more than providing for wages just over the poverty level. If business is to be rewarded for bringing jobs to Duluth, they must be of the $15 and up variety, not $9 and $10 jobs as is the case with JobZ.
3. Federal and state aid to cities, and taxes
We can and must re-establish the foundation of the “Minnesota miracle” of the early and mid-70’s, when the State of Minnesota was truly a partner with local governments and school districts. That entails increasing local government aids, and more reliance on a truly progressive income tax and less reliance on the regressive property tax. Today cities and counties have few options other than increasing property taxes to intolerable levels or cutting much needed services.
4. Closing unfair racial inequities.
A concrete example is to work to provide universal and affordable health insurance for all Minnesotans. In order to address other inequities, I would offer the following: as a white male, I will never know what it is like to walk in the shoes of a Native American, or in the shoes of an African American. I do know that the only way to break down stereotypes and to begin to understand each other is to engage in an ongoing and constructive dialogue. Whatever growth that has occurred in my life in this area has occurred because I have listened to others.

Daniel Maryland's statement

Our public and private education institutions must teach Industrial and Domestic Arts so our children will be capable of using their hands for creativity. A person is only half educated if they do not know how to use their hands to produce employable value.
This is my philosophy and goal if elected to the House of Representatives.

Maryland’s response to Hillsider Questionnaire

1. Affordable health care
Our country and culture have many social problems. However, keeping Medicare viable and effective is our largest long term public challenge today.
In Minnesota, Medicare, Minnesota Medical Assistance and Minnesota Care furnish health care to a large portion of our population. Along with these health plans and employer furnished health plans, there are still a large number of our citizens without health insurance. For the uninsured, I would propose a base health insurance plan where the premiums would not exceed 6 percent of their gross income. We should also explore the Massachusetts Health Plan which has been in effect for three years and includes all citizens of the state.
I have had the privilege to practice medicine for 50 years in Minnesota and in the 7B District of Duluth. With this experience I see this public issue from both sides. I believe I have ideas to deliver health care with more efficiency and reduced costs.
2. Livable wage
A livable wage issue is complex because of fluctuating economic times. This issue is a symptom of our local larger problem. District 7B has large segments of land not being efficiently used. We need new and vibrant industry to move into our area. Government incentives like inexpensive land and less tax for a period of time will help create a favorable environment.
3. Federal and state aid to cities, and taxes
I am not in favor of our city government to offer loans or bonding which can default. Note the past failed city projects.
With vibrant industry and manufacturing, more citizens are employed which increase revenues and high paid wages which improves our total economy. Therefore, the solution to our wage problem is more industry, manufacturing and employment.
4. Closing unfair racial inequities.
Racial and ethnic inequities have been present in human cultures since the dawn of history. Every civilization has had this terrible track record which eventually destroys the culture. We as Americans must not fall into this trap. Education of our citizens with tolerance is essential. We must judge our fellow Man by their behavior and character, not by their ethnic background or skin color.

Minnesota Legislative seat 7B Candidates answer Hillsider Questionnaire

Retiring representative Mike Jaros will vacate the Minnesota Legislative seat 7B. The following candidates are vying for the seat: Democrats Roger Reinert, Brandon Clokey, John Derbis, Marsh Stenersen, and Daniel Maryland; Republican Allan Kehr, and Independent party candidate Jay Cole.

Each candidate was contacted or attempted to be contacted more than once to participate. Candidates were allowed one press release or statement in addition to answering the questionnaire.

The primary election is Tuesday Sept. 9. Polls are open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. The general election is Tuesday, Nov. 4.

The Hillsider asked all the candidates to participate in our questionnaire. Here are the questions.

1. Health care is on everyone’s mind. What will you do as a representative to ensure that all Minnesotans have adequate access to affordable health care?
2. Half of Minnesota’s jobs do not pay a standard living wage. What is your position on providing subsidies or incentives to employers who provide a livable wage?
3. Federal and state aid to cities have been cut. Basic and important services such as senior meal staff, youth programs in general, those which add to health and prevent crime are affected; also vital services such as residential water have new rules and are expensive.
Question: What can you offer at the state level that would increase access and cut costs to vulnerable taxpaying citizens?
4. Racial inequities in Minnesota exist in most of life’s areas for American Indian and African Americans, they are statistically more likely to suffer: higher infant mortality, shorter life span, less access to health care, fewer high school graduates, higher unemployment, lower income, more often victims of crime, make up a higher percentage of prison inmate population. These historical trends continue to exist today in Duluth.
Question: Describe what specific actions you will take to lead the people of your district to close these unfair racial inequities?

TPAC candidate forum generates large turn-out, vigorous discussion

Twin Ports Action Coalition and the Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless sponsored a candidate forum on Thursday, Aug. 21 at the Damiano Center Cafeteria. The forum was with six of the seven candidates for Minnesota Legislative House 7B seat which, will be vacated by Mike Jaros. Duluth Third District City Councilor Sharla Gardner moderated the forum and Kennedy Horton from the Minnesota Coalition for the Homeless was the timekeeper. “This was a great event, I am glad the candidates came and answered the hard hitting questions about homelessness and poverty,” said Scott Yeazle, Chairman of the Twin Ports Action Coalition.

Sixty people attended the forum, many prepared with questions. The forum will be on PACT TV and was filmed by TPAC Member Shane Pribble.
See the forum on the Twin Ports Action Coalition website at
(See the Hillsider questionaire.)

Welcom back college students, spaghetti dinner

Residents all over Duluth will get new neighbors this month as college students make their annual return to town. Lake Superior College started on Monday, Aug. 25, while both UMD and College of St. Scholastica start on Tuesday, Sept. 2.

Reaching Out to Neighbors Nips Problems in the Bud

Getting to know your neighbors can go a long way toward preventing problems. Chester Park United Methodist Church is working to foster good relationships by serving a Good-Neighbor Spaghetti Dinner. Students - along with their parents and friends - and long-time residents are encouraged to attend on Sunday, Aug. 31 anytime between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. The church is located at 819 N. 18th Ave. E., one-half block uphill from East Eighth Street.

If you live in a neighborhood with student residents, please consider hosting a neighborhood gathering that includes your new and current student neighbors as well as your long-term neighbors. Parties have ranged from large potlucks to simply asking people to stop in, say hello and have an ice cream cone. As with National Night Out, traditionally, this is an alcohol-free family event. These gatherings traditionally take place on the Sunday after Labor Day (Sept. 7 this year), however, any time during the first two weeks of September would probably work.
UMD will reimburse residents who host neighborhood gatherings for up to $50 of their expenses. To qualify for reimbursement, you must register your event in advance with UMD by calling Cheryl Anderson at 726-6790.

For questions, call Sandy Robinson at 393-9329. Or, contact The Campus Neighbors Advisory Group at P.O. Box 3262, Duluth, MN 55803-3262, phone 724-4389, email campusneighborsATgmail DOT com.

A simple exchange of phone numbers between students and long-term residents can help ease future tensions. Most students would prefer to receive a phone call from you informing them that they are a little too loud instead of a visit from the police.
Additional police squads will be in place for the last weekend of August and the first two weekends in September to handle house party and neighborhood disturbances. If the situation does get out of hand call 911 for a squad to respond. Community Officer Bill Eickhoff recommends giving your name and number to the dispatcher and asking to have the responding officer call you. If a house becomes a chronic nuisance, please call Officer Eickhoff at 730-5563 to discuss options for resolving the issue. Central Hillside residents may phone Officer Barry Midthun at 730-5564. Leave a message as they may not be at their desks.
Officer Eickhoff will speak at the September 16 Campus Neighbors meeting.

American Indians talk about the future at feast and forum

Niko LaFrinier, age 2, enjoys a slice of watermelon at the Duluth American Indian Commission’s Feast and Forum on Aug. 21. He is the son of Rachael LaFrinier.

The Duluth American Indian Commission focused on the future at its community feast and forum last month at the YWCA’s Trepanier Hall. As part of the program, Michelle Gordon, co-chairwoman of the DAIC, asked attendees to envision the 26 housing units for American Indians and the American Indian Center that the YWCA will soon contain. The facility will also provide space for an art gallery, offices for service organizations and a health-care clinic.
Gordon said she could imagine kids drumming on the stage, feasts like the one that night, artwork and Dr. Joycelyn Dorcher’s medical students visiting the clinic. (Dorcher is also co-chairwoman of the DAIC.)

In addition to the future, some attendees took time to comment on the present. Bart Long, for example, had kind words for Police Chief Gordon Ramsay and the current relationship between the police and the American Indian community. “There is more communication [where] previously there was none,” he explains. “There is follow-up. [Ramsay] calls back.”Ron Boushey, another member of the DAIC said he was impressed with the new city council and that Indian people do have a voice in Duluth. “This community as a whole does not realize that there are many Native American businesses in this town that support the community directly,” said Marlene Diver, a retired social worker. “We have so many successful people.” She cited Jim Perrault Construction, Grey Star Electronics, police officers, foster care parents and UMD professors as examples.

In her address, Melanie Ford, St. Louis County Attorney, advocated fair and vigorous prosecution of crime, focus on preventing crime, truancy prevention and racial fairness, and equal justice. Her office is forming an advisory committee of people involved in the juvenile justice system, service providers and community leaders of all races and ethnic backgrounds in the county.

The DAIC meets the third Monday of each month on the fourth floor of City Hall.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Day of Prayer and Fasting for peace and wholeness in Central Hillside

Day of Prayer and Fasting
for peace and wholeness in our city
Wednesday, August 27
But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you …, and pray to the Lord on its behalf,
for in its welfare you will find your welfare.
Jeremiah 29:7

Day of Prayer and Fasting
for peace and wholeness in our city
Wednesday, August 27

culminating with Worship & Supper at the Damiano Center
(206 W 4th St)

Worship and Praise
Prayer Walk
through the Neighborhood
Soup and Bread with Thanksgiving
at the Damiano Center
(206 W 4th St )

Come and join the Duluth Faith Community to unite in prayer in response to the recent violence in the Central Hillside Community
(For additional information, contact Kim Crawford,
CHUM Organizer at 218-740-2496)

Sponsored by the Community Safety Initiative, a cooperative program of CHUM, NHS, and the Duluth Police Department

Please pray
for the Central Hillside neighborhood

for our neighborhood leaders:
police, firefighters, elected officials, business leaders, community organizers, parents;

for safety and security
in our homes, on our streets,
in parks and businesses and schools;

for a fountain of hope to spring up,
hope for deliverance
from despair, emptiness, addiction, violence, poverty, racism, homophobia, abuse, and other sin which holds us down;

for God’s presence, power and peace
in our lives and in our city.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Iraq Moratorium anti-war vigil

Event: Iraq Moratorium anti-war vigil
What: Protest
Host: Northland Anti-War Coalition
Start Time: Friday, August 15 at 4:30pm
End Time: Friday, August 15 at 5:30pm
Where: Canal Park [in front of the DeWitt Seitz Building

7B Candidate Forums

Sponsored by the 7th Senate District DFL
No charge for these educational eventsMeet the DFL Candidates for the7B House of Representatives Seat. Hear their positions on issues that are important to you.

August 15-------Lincoln School Cafeteria
2423 West 5th Street
August 26------Morgan Park Auditorium
1243 88th Avenue West
September 4-­--MacArthur School Auditorium
727 North Central Avenue
All forums begin at 6:30 pm with a
Question and Answer period.
Following the forum the candidates
will be available to meet and talk
with voters individually

Sunday, August 03, 2008

Progressive Action sponsors candidate forum

Progressive Action Hosts 7B Legislative Forum August 13Progressive Action is hosting a forum on Wednesday, August 13. The forum will be held in the Duluth City Council Chambers, on the third floor of the Duluth City Hall, from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on the 13th. Of the seven candidates, the six Democrats and one Republican have confirmed they plan to participate, including Democrats Roger Reinert, Brandon Clokey, John Derbis, Marsh Stenersen, and Daniel Maryland and Republican Allan Kehr. Independence Party candidate Jay Cole is not able to take part in the forum.

Moderators for the forum will be Progressive Action President and local columnist Barb Olsen and Progressive Action Steering Committee member Patrick Boyle. Questions for the forum will be put together by Progressive Action members and the organization' s Steering Committee, and additional questions will be taken in written form from the audience. No questions will be shared with any candidate prior to the forum.The forum will be recorded by PACT-TV (Channel 7 on Cable) and broadcast multiple times, on dates and times to be announced soon. The event is free and open to the public.

Progressive Action is a group of volunteers in Northeastern Minnesota and Northwestern Wisconsin formed after the death of Minnesota Senator Paul Wellstone to continue his work on issues such as affordable housing, living wages, and electing progressives to office. For more information, see

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Understanding the Costs of War

“Days of Remembrance”
AUGUST 5th – 9th
Understanding The Costs of War

Loss of Life, Neglect of Human Needs, Economic Failure, Hope & Spiritual Decline, Nuclear Buildup

August 5th Tues.
Press Conference on “Days of Remembrance” Events
10 a.m. Enger Park at the Peace Bell
7 p.m. Remembrance Church Service
Concordia Lutheran Church
2501 Woodland Avenue

August 6th Wed.
1945 US Atomic Bombing of Hiroshima
A Day of Silence (Consider wearing a black armband)
7 p.m. Film and Discussion “White Light/Black Rain”
First United Methodist (Copper Top Church)
230 East Skyline Parkway

August 7th Thurs.7 p.m.
A Community Conversation!
The Costs of War
Hear Panelists & Share Your Views
Small Groups will Report out to all
The Unitarian Universalist Congregation Bldg.
835 West College Street
(2 blocks West of U.M.D. on College Street)

August 8th Fri. 7 p.m.
Film and Discussion “Why We Fight”
The Duluth/Superior Friends Meeting Bldg
1802 East 1st Street

August 9th Sat. 1945
US Atomic Bombing of Nagasaki
7 p.m. Ecumenical Day of Prayer & Remembrance
Remembering, Mourning, & Repenting the Destruction
with Singer Sara Thompson
Peace United Church of Christ
1111 North 11th Street

Supporting Groups;
Northland Anti-War Coalition, Vets for Peace Chapter 80,
Loaves & Fishes Catholic Worker, Women in Black,
Duluth Chapter Every Church a Peace Church, Community of the Third Way,
Duluth Labor Caucus for Peace, Grandmothers for Peace,
Duluth Area Green Party, U.U. Peace & Justice Committee,
Network of Spiritual Progressives Duluth,
U.M.D. Students for Peace, Pax Christi,
Iraq Veterans Against the War MN Chapter, Woman Speak for a Sane World,
Just Peace Committee of Peace United Church of Christ, etc.

Contact: earthmannow AT gmail DOT com or 218 269- 8096 * 218-728-9395
Flyer Produced by Donated Labor

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Goodwill Duluth: employing and empowering

Caption: Clients work together sorting donated items using a conveyor belt at the Garfield Avenue work site. (Photo by Wendy Grethen)

By Wendy Grethen

“By unloading you are uplifting.” This is the new marketing message for Duluth’s Goodwill. And they’re right. Every day people are cleaning house and unloading heaps and heaps of donated items for redistribution and resale.
The people who benefit most from Goodwill Industries are the people who process the donations.

The state of Minnesota has two Goodwill Industries and one is right here in Duluth. Goodwill Industries is a private non-profit community rehabilitation program which helps people with a disability or other barrier to employment achieve the highest level of work productivity with respect to individual dignity.

Goodwill serves about 190 clients in the Duluth area with almost half from the Hillside area. The hours and tasks that the client works are selected based upon the individual.
Client work activities include sorting donations into usable or non-usable items and different categories, removing metal from unusable goods, which then go to a secondary market to be recycled, or electronics testing.

Some clients work off-site and perform janitorial services at the Federal Building and other sites in Duluth or help with lawn mowing. Goodwill also has services to blister pack or shrink-wrap and can manufacture items. The clients are the labor force providing the work, whose revenues support Goodwill’s rehabilitation services.

Currently, a 21- member board of directors along with the staff of 135 from the Duluth area help to make operations as efficient as possible, provide job opportunities for clients or supervise clients either in projects or at the 11 retail stores in the Northland.
Some funding for Goodwill Industries comes through the United Way, but 85 percent of Goodwill’s revenue comes from its retail, lawn care, and janitorial services.
Loads of donations are dropped off at the Goodwill main drop-off sites or its other sites throughout the Northland. Most of the donations are clothing.

“The goal is for 11,000 saleable clothing items to ship to stores each week. The goal is often exceeded,” said Goods Manager Greg Conkins.

Unusable goods going to secondary markets, beyond what is sold at the regional stores, may go to locations such as Africa, Afghanistan, Pakistan, or India. Likewise, unusable items that have recycling potential are separated out by category and then sold to appropriate salvage markets.
Substantial progress has been made in cutting down about half of the materials that would have gone into a landfill and often the recycled metals or glass can then go on to make new products.

So, go ahead and do a little back-to-school and fall routine-cleaning in your closets and garage. Goodwill welcomes drop-offs of clothing, shoes, garden equipment, bicycles, sporting goods, linens, glassware, kitchenware, books and furniture in good condition.

For more information, call Goodwill at (218) 722-6351 for a pick-up or to ask a question on acceptable items to donate. Your donations are tax-deductible, as provided by law.

There are 11 retail Goodwill stores in northeastern Minnesota and northwestern Wisconsin, including three in the Duluth/Superior Area: 700 Garfield Avenue, 4883 Miller Trunk Hwy, and 2401 Tower Avenue in Superior.
Visit the website at

Locations of 2008 National Night Out block parties

Caption: Police Officer Barry Midthun at a block party in July. Photo by Andre G.

East Hillside
East Sixth Street between 11th Avenue East and 12th Avenue East – Contact is Joann at 728-1516.
East Hillside Community Club at Grant Community Recreation Center (901 E 11th St) - Contact is Mona at 724-1193.
East Seventh Street between 16th Avenue East and 17th Avenue East – Contact is Carol at 730-9954.
East Sixth Street between 16th Avenue East and 17th Avenue East – Contact is Christine at 390-5363.
Grandview Avenue between alley below Kent Road & 10th Street – Contact is MaryAnn at 724-2729.

Central Hillside
First Avenue West above alley between First and Second Streets - Contact is Gregory at 720-6521.

Lincoln Park
Duluth Boys & Girls Club at Lincoln Park Picnic Pavilion - Contact is Tim at 725-7706.

Other neighborhoods east:
Robinson Street between 40th Avenue East and 41st Avenue East – Contact is Lynne at 525-1205
East Fourth Street between 37th Avenue East & Pinewood Contact is Laura 728-2410.
East First Street between 28th Avenue East and 29th Avenue East – Contact is Teresa at 724-1860.
McCulloch Street between 42nd Avenue East and 43rd Avenue East – Contact is Catherine at 525-3383.
Branch Street between 30th Avenue East & 31st Avenue East - Contact is Nancy at 724-1344.
Luverne Street between 43rd Avenue East & 44th Avenue East - Contact is Julie at 525-0051.
Longview Garden Club (Clover to East 7th Street to Irving Place) -Contact is Anita at 724-5761.
Lester Park United Methodist Church at 5401 E Superior St - Contact is Pastor David Warner at 525-4373.
Crescent View Avenue between 36th Avenue East & 37th Avenue East - Contact is Robert at 724-1969.
Cooke Street from 47th Avenue East to 48th Avenue East - Contact is Stefanie at 525-3637.

Other neighborhoods west:
Gary-New Duluth Community Club at 1313 101st Avenue West - Contact is Pat at 626-3438.
91st Avenue West between Grace Street and Hilton - Contact is Michelle at 626-2831.
Asbury Methodist Church at 6822 Grand Av - Contact is Shelly at 624-0061.
1200 block of 99th Avenue West - Contact is Steve at 626-2476
3216 Wellington Street - Contact is Sandy/Gary at 624-9433.

National Night Out, 2006

This photo was taken at a block party on East Sixth Street in 2006 Duluth firefighters and kids

See more here

Summer, time for block parties and annual National Night Out

See photo from 2007 NNO here

By Naomi Yaeger-Bischoff
Get together with your neighbors and enjoy a block party on Tuesday, Aug. 5. It’s National Night Out (NNO), an event celebrated across the nation as a way to strengthen neighborhoods and fight crime.

Last year over 34 million people across the United States and Canada participated, and Duluth was no exception. Across Duluth, people enjoyed hot dogs, hamburgers and other picnic-type goodies, while listening to music, playing games and acquainting themselves with their neighbors. In many cases, the block party guests included police and firefighters, which gave residents a chance to get to know their public safety officers a little better. Children (and adults) loved exploring the fire trucks.

The NNO hopes to achieve its mission of creating safe and strong neighborhoods through four main goals: heighten crime and drug prevention awareness; generate support for, and participation in, local anti-crime programs; strengthen neighborhood spirit and police/community partnerships; and send a message to criminals letting them know that neighborhoods are organized and fighting back.

Churches United in Ministry (CHUM) will celebrate on First Avenue West between First and Second Streets. Everyone is welcome to attend. Member congregations will supply and serve a meal. Special music is part of the celebration.

Most streets with parties will be barricaded from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

See photos from 2007 NNO here

Instead of fighting crime, let’s promote safer neighorhoods

Let’s learn from Three Cups of Tea author, Greg Mortenson

With some of these gorgeous evenings in Duluth it is a great time to get outdoors and say hello to your neighbors, go for a walk, or attend a Neighborhood Night Out party in your neighborhood. You may know that NNO got started 25 years ago and that it’s purpose is to fight crime by having people know their neighbors and get in touch with their safety officers.

I’d like to put in that I hope this night would, instead of “fighting crime” would be to “promote safer neighborhoods.” Let’s look forward to possibilities and what a simple wave and greeting can build and create in your neighborhood. Ultimately the goal is the same but I think it’s a little friendlier to work (and play) together making all the neighborhoods in Duluth fine places to live.

I learned from Greg Mortenson, author of “Three Cups of Tea” who visited Duluth this spring, that there is a basic difference between “fighting terrorism” and “promoting peace” in the world today.
Wendy Grethen

Friday, July 18, 2008

Public cautioned about copy-cat meter installers

The Duluth Police Department and the Department of Public Works and Utilities are asking citizens to be vigilant after an individual recently tried to gain access to a private home claiming to be an installer for the City’s Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) project.

The Department of Public Works and Utilities reminds citizens that installers can be identified by the following means:

Installers will always wear company apparel clearly indicating that they work for SL Serco, A.G. O’Brien or A.W. Kuettel companies

  1. Installers will always wear a photo ID badge
  2. Installers’ vehicles will also carry signs reading “Contractor for the City of Duluth, Automated Meter Reading Project”, with the City logo and the ComfortSsytems logo prominently displayed
  3. The Duluth Police Department advises citizens to ask the installer who visits their home to show their photo ID. If an individual cannot produce such identification, deny access to the home and call 911 immediately.
  4. Citizens with questions should call SL Serco at 730-4110 or Duluth Public Utilities at 730-4050 during regular business hours.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

CHUM Celebrates National Night Out with the ALL CHUM Street Fest

First Avenue West between First and Second Streets

Tuesday, August 5 from 6:00 – 8:00 pm
Food served 6:00 - 7:00 p.m.

The CHUM Community Celebrates 35 years of
“Caring about people and working for change!”

Everyone is Welcome! CHUM supporters, congregation members, neighbors, current or past volunteers, anyone having an interest in CHUM’s work – You are invited to share with us in an evening of food, music and fun!

Our member congregations will supply and serve the meal.
The menu includes: a hot dog or hamburger, potato salad, baked beans, watermelon, chips, dessert, coffee or lemonade.

Links to cool sites for Lake Superior Days

Subject: Lake Superior Day is Sunday, July 20, 2008!

For the fifth year, the Lake Superior Binational Forum invites you to celebrate the world’s largest freshwater lake on the third Sunday in July! This year we encourage you to “Go Fly a Kite!” The kite symbolizes a clean energy source—the wind—and fewer air emissions from alternative energy generators means cleaner lake water for people and wildlife.

Follow this link for a video about Lake Superior and its annual day. The video was written and produced by news reporter and videographer Greg Peterson of Marquette , Michigan .

The Binational Forum’s web site offers suggestions for many activities or actions you can take to protect, restore, or celebrate the lake on July 20 and every day.

A calendar is updated daily with new events and activities scheduled in many communities around the lake.

You can order free, multiple copies of a paper placemat and kids’ activity page by emailing Use it at a family picnic, office gathering, church dinner, day camp, or other event.

This year’s Lake Superior Day postcard is a photograph of a swimming spot in Duluth , Minnesota , taken by former Duluth resident Mark Ryan. There’s a great story about this historic spot in the Duluth harbor!

For information about the Lake Superior Binational Program’s Lakewide Management Plan and biennial highlights of accomplishments for 2006-2008, please click here.

The Lake Superior Binational Forum has been headquartered in the U.S. at Northland College in Ashland , Wisconsin , for 17 years. Funding in the U.S. comes from the Environmental Protection Agency’s Great Lakes National Program Office. The Canadian office is administered at EcoSuperior in Thunder Bay , Ontario , and is funded by Environment Canada.

Lissa Radke
US Coordinator
Lake Superior Binational Forum
Northland College
1411 Ellis Ave.
Ashland WI 54806
(715) 682-1489
"Water is life, and the quality of water determines the quality of life."
--Lake Superior Binational Program vision statement
The next Lake Superior Day is Sunday, July 20, 2008!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Don't lose your home

Free Workshop Helps At-Risk Homeowners in Duluth Region Understand Options
Minnesota Home Ownership Center urges early action

The Minnesota Home Ownership Center and LSS Financial Counseling are offering a free workshop for homeowners living in the Duluth region who are worried about making upcoming mortgage payments, are already facing foreclosure or for anyone interested in learning more about foreclosure. The Borrowers Workshop will take place on Tuesday, July 15 from 4:30 to 7:30pm at First Lutheran Church, 1100 East Superior Street, Duluth. No appointments are needed. Participants are encouraged to stop in any time anytime during the workshop hours.

The workshop will provide information on what happens during foreclosures, homeowners’ rights, and solutions for long-term housing needs. Participants will be able to ask questions and get free advice – confidentially - from mortgage lending and foreclosure specialists.

The Minnesota Home Ownership Center urges all homeowners facing mortgage delinquency or foreclosure to attend this workshop. The most important thing a troubled homeowner can do is to begin working with their lender or a foreclosure specialist early. The earlier homeowners act, the more options they have.

For more information about foreclosure prevention or to learn about other upcoming workshops, call the Minnesota Home Ownership Center at (866) 462-6466. The Center works with a network of community-based organizations that offer free, confidential advice about mortgages and foreclosure.

Recognized nationally as a model of home ownership and foreclosure prevention programming, the Minnesota Home Ownership Center convenes a network of 50 community-based non-profit, government and tribal organizations to deliver home ownership education and foreclosure prevention services to low and moderate-income households throughout Minnesota. Through its network of community partners, the Center provides 15,000 low- and moderate-income households each year with the tools they need to purchase and sustain affordable homes.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Pick you own berries

Strawberries are ripe at Finke's Berry Farm in Carlton. Picking berries there is one of the best parts of my summer. The farm is located at 2331 Co. Rd. 4. Call 384-4432 or see for more information. Raspberries will be ripe later in the month or early in August. We'll try to arrange a group picking time followed by a jam making activity. Greens, radishes, spring onions, and other fresh foods are available at farmers' markets now. The Sustainable Farming Association's website has a list of area markets, including locations and times. (

The Slow Food Harvest Festival Pig Roast and Picnic committee is planning that event. It will be held September 6 at 5 p.m. at Bayfront Park. We'll need volunteers to help chop vegetables and do other preparation and clean up work for the picnic. Another group is planning monthly activities for the fall and winter. More information will be posted on the Slow Food Lake Superior website, Let us know your ideas or join us to help plan.

Free Parks and Recreation Summer Skating on Wednesdays

Heritage Hockey CenterDuluth Parks and Recreation offers free summer skating every Wednesday from 1:30-3:30 PM at the new Heritage Hockey Center.

The next free summer skating session will be held on Wednesday, July 16 from 1:30- 3:30 PM. The Heritage Hockey Center is located at 120 South 30th Avenue West. These sessions are free and open to all ages for pleasure skating. Please bring your own skates. For more information please call Parks and Recreation at 730-4300.

Building a sandcastle or something else

Area Youth are invited to participate in the Parks and Recreation Department's Sandmodeling Contest, Tuesday, July 22 from 11:00-2:30 PM at the Park Point Beach House located at 45th Street and MinnesotaAvenue.

Each community recreation center will create their own work of art inthe sand. Judges will determine who takes home the traveling trophy, buteveryone is a winner at this event! Free for all youth, families andparticipants from all community recreation centers.

Transportation isprovided from community recreation centers to the event. Duluth Parks and Recreation Department's Summer Youth RecreationProgram is open at fourteen community recreation centers. Most sitesare open from 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM Monday through Thursday. Hours do vary at some centers, please check your local center for exact hours.

The program offers recreation activities for all youth, focusing on ageskindergarten-6th grade. Activities include supervised arts and crafts,field trips, story telling, games, swimming, hiking, special events andmuch more. The summer program will run through August 15th. This event was made possible through the generous donations fromNorthland Foundation, Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation and theLloyd K. Johnson Foundation. For more information contact Parks and Recreation at 730-4300.

Wednesday afternoon minstries at First Lutheran

First Lutheran Church Intergenerational Summer Ministry “Casting Our Nets”This summer everyone is invited to come cast their nets into the great bible sea and join the fishing fun as we learn more about Jonah and Jesus and the Disciples through drama, music, games, crafts, and food. Casting Our Nets is an intergenerational program, which means that everyone from toddlers to grandparents are invited to participate. The activities will encourage cooperation are designed to include every one of all ages and abilities. Please come in July for three afternoons of fishy fun! Participate in one or all three sessions.

No cost, dinner provided. Wednesdays July 16, 23, 30 from 3-6 p.m.

Fly a kite at the First Lutheran Worship in the Park service

Worship in the Park
First Lutheran Church will be holding its Worship in the Park service each Sunday at 10:00 a.m. until September. Bring a lawn chair or blanket. In case of rain service will be held in the sanctuary of First Lutheran Church . Nursery is available.
July 20 will be a celebration of Lake Superior Day with a kite flying event following the service. Bring your kite!


The Northland will celebrate Lake Superior the third week in July aimed at raising awareness and protection of our world-class resource.  Promoted by the Lake Superior Bi national Forum, cities and groups are encouraged to hold special events.  In the Duluth-Superior and North Shore areas, local organizations will sponsor education booths, kite flying, and an awards ceremony. Come out, learn about Lake Superior issues and have some fun too!

Events at the Canal Park Maritime Museum and Split Rock Lighthouse State Park will feature experts and materials on a variety of invasive species.  DNR watercraft inspectors will be on hand to educate where boaters should look and how to inspect and clean a boat to avoid spreading Aquatic Invasive species.  U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary will provide information on vessel safety checks, safe boating, and marine environmental protection.

Environmental and conservation groups will provide information on the history of Lake Superior, ballast water legislation, and toxics.  Lake Superior Magazine will sponsor kite flying along the lake.  “This annual celebration is an opportunity to celebrate Lake Superior and the North Shore - A place that Minnesotans clearly love. It is also an opportunity to educate - both our visitors and those who call the North Shore home - on what is being done locally and nationally on legislation to continue to protect and restore Lake Superior,” said Rosie Loeffler-Kemp, NE MN Coordinator, Clean Water Action.

One of the key messages of area events for Lake Superior Day 2008 is “Clean Boats Everyday.”  Boaters and anglers are reminded to take action to prevent the spread of harmful aquatic invasive species.  “Clean Boats Everyday” is a summer long initiative by that highlights efforts of the Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers! Campaign.  “Protecting Lake Superior from the introduction and spread of aquatic invasive species is paramount,” said Doug Jensen, Aquatic Invasive Species Program Coordinator, U of Minnesota Duluth Sea Grant Program.  Sea Grant has identified at least 88 non-native species that are in the basin.  Of these, 66 species are considered to be invasive.

Local events sponsored by:  Clean Water Action, Lake Superior Binational Forum, Lake Superior Magazine, Minnesota DNR, Minnesota Environmental Partnership, Minnesota Sea Grant, Save Lake Superior Association, and the Duluth - U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

                    To learn more about what you can do to celebrate Lake Superior Day 2008


For more info on Stop Aquatic Hitchhikers!, visit

For more info on the Great Lakes, visit