Kim Eslinger

Brianna Ojard
Associate Editor

David Tinjum

Claudia Kittock
Columnist / Non-Profits
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Merle Minda
Small Business Columnist
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Michael Rainville Jr.
History Columnist
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Ryan Ojard
Staff Photographer

Jenny Heck
Mill City Cooks
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Covering life, work, and play in the Historic Mill District and Downtown Minneapolis Riverfront neighborhoods. Have an opinion, local news or events to share?  Contact us.


He Knew it Was Time to Start Working Out When His Wife Said...

Doug and Pam have been married for 12 years.   After the wedding, Doug stopped working out - fast forward 3 or 4 years, and an eye opening statement from Pam made him realize he needed to make a change.  They were shopping on a rainy day, and Pam was watching Doug run to the car.  When he got in the car, she blurted out, "Your boobs jiggle more than mine!".  It was then that Doug decided he needed to get back in shape.  As you can see below, he's kept that commitment and he and Pam enjoy working out together.


Email Andrea Austin at if you'd like to try a complimentary RealRyder spin class at 501SP1N, or if you have a fitness or nutrition question. 


Beautiful Array of Valentine's Flowers and Gifts at City Gardens Flower Mill

Valentine's Day is Monday!  City Gardens Flower Mill owner, Dan Seefelt, took a few moments to show us some of the gorgeous fresh flowers and gifts available to melt your sweetie's heart.  Call Dan today at 612-332-7377 to place your special order.

Valentines Day

Valentines Day

Valentines Day

Valentines Day

 Or how about a flower that lasts forever:

Valentines Day


Sorella Wine & Spirits has that Perfect Wine for a Special Valentine

When we asked Stacey at Sorella Wine & Spirits for an example of a current special that would work well for Valentine's, she recommended Mumm Napa.  I'm no connoisseur, but the description sounded wonderful: "Crisp and elegantly styled, with floral apple and yeasty spice aromas that lead to layered flavors of baked pear, citrus and creamy vanilla."  

Valentines Day


This Weekend in Mill City / February 11-13, 2011 

With the Holidays behind us, it's time to restart our weekend preview.  Events this weekend in and around the Historic Mill District of Minneapolis and across the Stone Bridge in Old St. Anthony:

Friday, February 11

Ten Thousand Things' Doubt, A Parable at Open Book

Winter Honors Recitals at MacPhail Center for Music

Live Music at the Aster Cafe

Saturday, February 12

Phyllis Root and Eileen Beha Reading at The Loft

Washburn A Mill Tour at Mill City Museum

Talking Image Connection at the Soap Factory

How'd They Do That Workshop at the Guthrie - The Winter's Tale

Family Valentine's Class at MCBA

Live Music at the Aster Cafe

Sunday, February 13

Winning Recipes from the Pillsbury Bake-Off at Mill City Museum

Live Music at the Aster Cafe

Weekend Brunch

Saturday & Sunday

Brunch at Spoonriver
750 South 2nd St (at Chicago Ave S)
Minneapolis, MN 55401

Reservations recommended

10:00am - 2:00pm

See the menu...

Saturday & Sunday

Brunch at the Aster Cafe
St. Anthony Main
125 SE Main Street
Minneapolis, MN 55414

Until 2pm.

See the menu...


Brunch at Spill the Wine
1101 Washington Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55415

brunch buffet 10am- 2pm Sunday
$12/person (kids 3 and under eat free, 4-12 years are 1/2 price!)

includes: eggs, bacon, french toast, hash browns, fresh salad and fruit, pastries, build your own omlette bar and more...

featuring absolut bloody bar for $5.

also offering fair trade coffee and full bar.


Metrodome Roof Will be Replaced

The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission voted unanimously today to replace the roof of the home of the Minnesota Viking, and host to over 300 events per year.

Estimated cost: $18.3 million

Source of funds: Mostly insurance

Completion date: August 1, 2011

Roof size: 10 acres

The Metrodome roof has collapsed four times since it opened, and one of the engineering firms involved in the evaluation stated that even with a new roof, there was a high probability the new inflatable roof would experience a collapse in the future.

Below: Metrodome the morning of the latest collapse

Metrodome Roof Collapse - Mill City Times Exclusive Photos



Winner of Minneapolis Riverfront Design Competition Announced

TLS/KVA was named the winner of the Minneapolis Riverfront Design Competition today during a press conference at the Nicollet Island Pavilion.  View the presentation and detailed proposal below:


TLS/KVA from MRDC on Vimeo.

A set of inter-related design initiatives-focused on health, mobility and green economy-that function at multiple scales and are enhanced by community outreach strategies to raise public awareness about consumer choice impacts on the River system.

View design details...

The other finalists and their designs were:

Ken Smith Workshop

Ken Smith from MRDC on Vimeo.

The river is a catalyst for renewal through new and enhanced park, infrastructure and ecological systems and a series of bold, iconic design scenarios that reflect the area’s history and spirit of place.

View design details...


Turenscape from MRDC on Vimeo.

A fifty-year framework for investment that focuses on: ecological renewal, social equity, new economies and a new identity for the city of the river, and includes a strategic approach to ecological infrastructure, re-orienting urbanism and phasing over time.

View design details...

Stoss Landscape Urbanism

Stoss Landscape and Urbanism from MRDC on Vimeo.

A longer-term transformation that reclaims the river as civic space, introduces new landscapes, infrastructure and urban fabrics, and weaves the multiple new and existing systems and experiences back into the city.

View design details...


Yoga: A Transformation - Mind, Body and Spirit - With Breath and Movement

Submitted by Victoria Rico

Whether improvisational or classic theater, actors warm up their voices and bodies with a variety of vocal and physical routines.  Transformation of sound and movement is a warm-up used in acting companies around the country.   The basic steps are and principles are easy:

   1. Make a circle.
   2. Person (A) enters the middle of the circle and creates a sound and a movement.
   3. A explores the sound and movement, which  might morph it into a new sound and movement.
   4. A then moves to another individual in the group (B) and gives the energy – the sound- the movement to B.
   5. B then moves into the circle and explores the sound and movement given by A and further transforms the sound and movement – when fully explored – B gives the sound and movement to another individual in the circle (C).
   6. Each individual takes a go at receiving, exploring and giving energy – through sound and movement to one another in the circle.

In transformation of sound and movement, the actors warm up the body and vocal chords, explore time and space, give and receive one another’s energy and trust.  The concept was recently explored in Circle Mirror Transformation by Annie Baker, staged at the Guthrie Theater in May and June of 2010

While transformation of sound and movement is an actor’s tool, the concepts also applies to yoga.  Transformation of the mind, body and spirit can be achieved through each asana practice (physical practice).   While it may seem counterintuitive, losing oneself to each asana (pose) creates the greatest opportunity for transformation.   One can not muscle one’s way into an asana, one must allow the breath to transport the body into each configuration. 

Click here for the full article under the Mill City Times Fitness Blog


Tomorrow - Tour at People Serving People

Time: 8:30am-9:00am

Location: 614 South 3rd Street

Come in for a tour at People Serving People from 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. Coffee and breakfast will be served after the tour. You'll see what's being done to help end family homelessness.

RSVP to Lauren at 612.277.0219 or


Tonight - A Sip of Science: Road De-Icing Salt Impact on Twin Cities Waters 

Time:  5:30pm

Location:  Aster Cafe, 125 SE Main Street, St. Anthony Main

This series bridges the gap between science and culture in a setting that bridges the gap between brain and belly. Food, beer and learning are on the menu in a happy hour forum that offers the opportunity to talk with researchers about their current work, its implications and its fascinations.

More info...


Local Talent and Funky Gifts at CorAzoN

CorAzoN recently hosted an "Idea Local: Minnesota's Creatives" party at the 1026 Washington Avenue South store.

CoraZon Party Feb 4

Above, Andrea Bidelman introduced her new line of Hobo inspired products. Historical Hobo symbols applied to functional everyday items such as wallets, passport holders and wall hangings.  Below, Penny Larsen of Penny Larsen Jewely with CorAzoN owner Susan Zdon.  She introduced her new line of Minnesota jewelry and silver zip code charms - a new take on her most recognized designs in a series of heart pendants - hand crafted, hand-cut and cast by Penny.

CoraZon Party Feb 4

In addition to owning Ink, a very cool by-appointment-only pen store in the IDS Center, Barry Rubin created a line of amusing, clever coasters called Step 12 1/2.  Great conversation pieces for your next party!

CoraZon Party Feb 4

Below, CorAzoN staff member Judy Grasamke, along with Robert Cohanim of Historical Remedies, took a moment to sport Judy's bow ties.  Hanging behind them are Judy's Urban Lunch Bags, each containing a personalized napkin.

CoraZon Party Feb 4

Robert's line of homeopathic lozenges are pictured below.  For more information on the benefits of each lozenge, check out Historical Remedies.

CoraZon Party Feb 4

Below, Susan with brother John Munson of The New Standards.

CoraZon Party Feb 4


Tonight - McKnighty-Nights I at The Loft

Time:  7:00pm

Location: Target Performance Hall, Open Book, 1011 Washington Avenue South

Admission:  Free

McKnighty-Nights I: The Screenwriters

Fellowship winners Shelli Ainsworth and David Erickson show and talk about their work. Cosponsored with IFP.

Each year, the McKnight Foundation and IFP Media Arts award four $25,000 Fellowships to Minnesota’s mid-career filmmakers and screenwriters. This year, screenwriter Jeffrey Hatcher (Casanova, The Duchess) and film producer Christine K. Walker (Howl, Life During Wartime) will present the 2010 Fellowship recipients and their work on two nights in February at The Loft Literary Center. We’re calling them the “McKnighty-Nights.” Bedtime snacks will be served.

Admission is free.


Baby's First Class at MacPhail Center for Music

We've been enamored with the MacPhail Center for Music since moving to the Mill District.  On February 5 we took our 15-month old grandson Louis to his first class there -  Musical Explorations II.  Angela is an incredible teacher.  She transitioned from activity to activity effortlessly, played piano and guitar, and explained the whys and hows of incorporating music into a child's development. 

The quality of activities, materials and follow up is wonderful.  After class parents were given a CD of songs recorded by MacPhail teachers, along with other materials. Shortly after class we received an email with a weekly Lesson - complete with videos and sheet music.  It is a true commitment to ensuring the lessons go beyond the weekly 1-hour class.

Below, Louis learns the Hokey Pokey with the help of his parents:






The Benefits of Being a Mill City Commons Member - An Ongoing Series

Dave and I became members of Mill City Commons(MCC) in January.  We joined for a number of reasons, including the ability to attend interesting member-only events, meet fascinating people, and to have more of a hands on role in helping with their various fundraising activities. 

Unfortunately, time constraints keep us from attending all the events we'd like to.   For example, Linnea Tweed, Executive Director at MCC, filled us in on a few we missed this past week:

"The Penumbra Theatre welcomed Mill City Commons members to their rehearsal on Thursday to watch Act 1 of their production of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom playing at the Guthrie February 11 through March 6. Artistic Director Lou Bellamy spoke before the rehearsal and provided valuable context for the show. It was a wonderful opportunity to hear about August Wilson and the play. Today, members enjoyed a hard hat tour of the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts. It is a pretty amazing place."

The Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Artsis the former Minnesota Shubert Center for Performing Arts, now located at 528 Hennepin Avenue and currently being renovated.

To learn more about Mill City Commons, please visit the website, or contact Linnea at 612-455-3329 or


Get Your Environmental News Fix with "Green Notes" from Hennepin County

Green Notes is a monthly e-newsletter covering environmental news, programs and events from Hennepin County.  While the articles are not Mill District-specific, anyone concerned with environmental issues in the city will find the newsletter interesting.

Click here to view archived issues of Green Notes.  To sign up for future editions, send an e-mail with "subscribe" in the subject line to  


Today - Cake Eater Cupcakes with Sheela Namakkal at Mill City Museum 

Location: Mill City Museum, 704 South Second Street

Times: Noon and 2:00pm

Fee: Programs included with museum admission of $10 adults, $8 seniors and college students, $5 children ages 6-17; free for MHS members.

Baker Sheela Namakkal of Cake Eater Bakery will share her genius for unique cupcakes in the museum’s Baking Lab, talk about where she gets her inspiration, give advice on the skills it takes to create the perfect cupcake and offer of her tasty treats.


Plan for 35w Bridge Memorial Approved by Minneapolis City Council

The I-35W bridge memorial has overcome its final hurdle, construction could begin next month.  The Minneapolis City Council gave the green light to the $1.5 million project last Friday. The project will not involve city funds, but instead will be paid for with money from a legal settlement.


Mill City Museum's "Arts on the River Day Camp" Part of Minnesota Historical Society's Summer 2011 Camp Lineup

The Minnesota Historical Societyoffers a wide variety of summer camps, including the popular "Little House in the Big Fort" and "Huck Finn" camps at Historic Fort Snelling, named "Best Camps for Kids" by in 2008.

This years line up includes "Arts on the River Day Camp" for ages 9 - 11 at Mill City Museum. This camp runs July 5 – 8 from 9:00am to 3:00pm each day. 

Participants will play music, get creative, bake bread and construct books while exploring the rich culture along the Minneapolis riverfront district.  They'll enjoy a new experience each day at four top arts centers, including Mill City Museum, the Guthrie Theater, Minnesota Center for Book Arts and MacPhail Center for Music. Campers will start each day at Mill City Museum and walk with camp leaders less than three blocks to each art organization. 

This camp is limited to 22 participants.  Click here for online registration.


City of Minneapolis Announces Historic Resources Survey

Brian Schaffer, Senior City Planner for the City of Minneapolis, recently announced the schedule of locations, dates and times for public meetings to introduce the Historic Resources Survey project.

The purpose of the survey is to:

- Identify unknown historic properties.
- Recommend properties for further study.
- Make informed decisions about the significance and protection of historic resources.
- Develop goals and strategies for preservation as well as neighborhood planning.

The city is divided into several Survey Areas, and the Mill District is part of the Central Core Survey.   The meeting for our neighborhood will be held Thursday, February 17, from 6:00pm-7:30pm at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church.

Residents can also tell the City what's historical in their neighborhoods by completing an online survey.

The City was first surveyed for historic resources in the 1970s, and many of todays designated landmarks and historic districts are a result of the original survey.  Since 2001, CPED has conducted a re-survey of historic resources in Minneapolis that has been funded by grants from the Minnesota Historical Society and matched by City dollars. The City has undertaken the re-survey because the aging of properties, changing attitudes about which types of historic resources need to be identified, e.g. historic landscapes, cultural and ethnic group resources. The survey will help achieve the Citys goal of documenting historic resources throughout the entire city over a ten-year period, which is scheduled for completion in 2011.


Tonight - Something Like a Bird - Jazz Thursdays at MacPhail Center for Music 

Something Like a Bird

Featuring: Adam Linz, bass; Bryan Nichols, piano; Michael Lewis, saxophones; Chris Thomson, saxophones; Greg Lewis, trumpet; Scott Agster, trombone; Stefan Kac, tuba; Dave Karr, baritone saxophone.

Tickets $10 Adult, $5 Youth

Come and see why Charles Mingus has been called a modern day extension to Duke Ellington as we explore the large ensemble side of his life. Whether writing for a trio or a 38 piece large ensemble, his voice is so recognizable that it echoes throughout the history of American music.

More info...


This Friday Night - Idea Local Party at CorAzoN

Join the party from 5:00pm-9:00pm at CorAzoN, 1026 Washington Avenue South, to celebrate Idea Local: Minnesota's Finest Creatives!

Guests for the evening include:

Andrea Bidelman introduces her new line of Hobo inspired products.

Penny Larsen - Penny Larsen Jewelry - One of the areas best know jewelry designers introduces her new line of Minnesota jewelry and silver zip code charms...and just in time for Valentines day a new take on her most recognized designs a series of heart pendents - hand crafted, handcut and cast by Penny.

Kristin Knych - Doodle Bird Designs Hip, stylish, stationary!

Charlie Hanson - New Valentine cards, original art work and of course Charlie's book - When Words Get in the Way

Judy Grasamke - Urban lunch bags for him and her

Robert Cohanim - Historical Remedies Line

Barry Rubin & Ruthie Steller - 12 1/2 Steps Drink Coasters

Ginnie Peterson - New Encaustic work from Ginnie

The lovely Sophia and Noel will provide music - come dance and enjoy with us!