Don’t worry about not having a finished design for the St. Paul Saints’ Lowertown ballpark. Frederick Melo of the PiPress says: “Designs for a new 7,000-seat ballpark in Lowertown are likely to be completed six-to-eight months later than initially expected, a delay critics are calling a symbolic blow to the $63 million project and future home of the minor league St. Paul Saints. St. Paul City Council President Kathy Lantry, however, doesn’t really care. ‘What is the worst thing that can happen? For me, the worst thing that can happen is that the Saints opener for their (2015) season might not be played at the new stadium. It doesn’t mean the season would be canceled.’ City officials have promised that Lantry’s worst case scenario will not come to pass. While ballpark designs were technically due in August and some initial site preparation will take place later than originally anticipated, they still expect major construction to move forward in the spring, as planned.”
Have these “experts” consulted with Jeff Dubay? Steve Karnowski of the AP writes: “Climate change threatens Minnesota’s prized fisheries from North Shore trout streams to popular walleye lakes such as Mille Lacs, experts said Wednesday as the National Wildlife Federation released a national study on the risks to freshwater fish in a warming world. ‘It is clear that climate change is creating new stresses on fish, whether brook trout in Appalachia, walleye in the Midwest, Apache trout in the arid Southwest, or salmon in the Pacific Northwest,’ the report said. And it’s not just summer fishing that’s at risk. The report said the Midwest’s ice fishing tradition could melt away because lakes are slower to freeze and quicker to thaw.” And I can quote you three Exxon/Mobil fellows who say it ain’t so.
Yeah … probably not a good idea. Kim McGuire of the Strib says: “A Benilde-St. Margaret School engineering teacher was fired for ‘inappropriate communication’ with students, according to a letter sent home to parents. The letter says that Jon Hickman’s dismissal was effective Tuesday. Benilde President Dr. Bob Tift wrote to parents that Hickman, who is a photographer, interacted with students outside of teaching. … On Hickman’s photography Facebook page, there are pictures of both young men and women. Some are wearing Benilde apparel. Two young women appear in bikinis.”
Still, it’s better than a sharp stick in the eye … or 2009. Adam Belz of the Strib says: “The number of job openings in Minnesota hit a 12-year high in the second quarter, with employers reporting 72,570 vacancies, according to figures released today by the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. Vacancies rose 15.3 percent from the same period a year ago, when employers reported nearly 63,000 openings. There were 2.1 unemployed people for each vacancy during the quarter, compared with 2.6 unemployed people per vacancy a year earlier. About 153,000 people were unemployed in the state at the end of July. … The trend, however, is for faster growth in part-time and lower-paying jobs. Forty-five percent of the openings are part-time, up from 42 percent a year ago. And the median hourly wage offer for job openings in Minnesota fell about 50 cents from the same period a year ago. The median wage offer is $12.50.”
At MPR, Sasha Aslanian reports: “Minnesota’s top Catholic leader is urging passage of federal immigration reform. Archbishop John Nienstedt, of the St. Paul and Minneapolis archdiocese, hosted a forum at the St. Thomas School of Law [Wednesday]. He said the current immigration system is ‘inconsistent, ineffective and fails to promote the common good.’ Nienstedt says Minnesota’s bishops support a path to citizenship for immigrants living in the country illegally.” Presumably even if they’re gay?
Another opponent for Congressman Tim Walz. Elizabeth Baier of MPR reports: “A third southern Minnesota Republican has launched a bid to challenge incumbent DFL U.S. Rep. Tim Walz in the 1st Congressional District. Jim Hagedorn, 51, from Blue Earth says if he’s elected, he’ll work to cut government spending and limit government by returning power to the states.” Isn’t that what the previous 220 candidates said?
Minnesota Orchestra update … Graydon Royce of the Strib says: “Musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra on Thursday asked management to release updated financial reports, budgets and forecasts. Specifically, musicians seek a cost summary of the renovation of Orchestra Hall, the 2013 budget, financial and contribution reports, the projected 2014 budget and fundraising plans, as well as the season schedule. Gwen Pappas, the orchestra’s spokeswoman, said management would be ‘happy to appropriately respond to this request, as we have with all others.’ ”
We’re No. 3! Sarah Mahoney and Susan Coenen at Prevention.com say: “We painstakingly evaluated 100 of the nation’s largest cities on 48 measures of health, happiness and well-being to find the healthiest, happiest cities in America. … 3. Minneapolis-St. Paul: The Hardiest Hearts … It’s not the rustic Nordic diet that catapulted the Twin Cities to heart-healthy superstardom. Credit city planners, local doctors, and area hospitals — and it’s been decades in the making. ‘It’s part of the fabric of our work here,’ says Courtney Jordan Baechler, M.D., a cardiologist at the Penny George Institute for Health and Healing. ‘People have spent decades boosting heart health by making the area more bikeable, for example, and offering cholesterol and blood pressure screenings to everyone.’ … Of our top cities, it has the highest per capita number of farmers’ markets and among the highest access to fresh produce.”
On his blog for KFGO radio up in Fargo, Mike McFeely comes to the defense of a longtime columnist dumped by the Forum papers. Says McFeely: “The newspaper fired longtime columnist Dennis Dalman, a unique and passionate institution on the newspaper’s opinion pages. Dennis wrote columns for 30 years, mixing hard-core politically-driven pieces (Dennis was an unapologetic liberal writing in an area that is just as unapologetically conservative) with humorous columns or homespun feature columns. … the Echo Press quietly discontinued Dennis’ column as of July 26, neither notifying readers nor allowing Dennis the usual standard-practice farewell column to say thanks for the memories. Dennis himself didn’t get much of an explanation, receiving an e-mail from [editor Al] Edenloff that said the decision was made by management (meaning not Edenloff, the editor) because management wants ‘less-political columns.’ … Dalman believes the final straw was the column that ran in the Echo Press in the July 26 edition, in which he called for Republicans to offer their own health-care solution if they are hell-bent on destroying Obamacare.”