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Go to bed! DNR extends Mille Lacs night-fishing ban

Ortman advertises; Stillwater cracks down on chalk-drawing outlaws; removing the Cedar Avenue bridge?; and more.

Damn the ban! For MPR, John Enger writes, “This year, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources extended the regular four-week early season night fishing ban on Mille Lacs through the full season, requiring fishermen to get off the lake by 10 p.m. The decision sparked some outrage on the lake.”

U.S. Senate candidate Julianne Ortman, trailing badly in the money race to GOP rival Mike McFadden, will air $20,000 worth of campaign ads before next week’s state Republican convention, MPR’s Catharine Richert reports. That’s nothing compared to Al Franken’s recent $140,000 buy, but it garners free media like MPR’s … and this.

They better clean this up before Log Jam Days … . Says the PiPress’ Mary Divine about the latest kerfuffle in kerfuffle-loving Stillwater … . “An anonymous complaint about the Daily Grind Espresso Cafe’s sidewalk chalk art in downtown Stillwater led to a visit Wednesday from a police officer, who told owners Tim and Megan Palm that they could no longer advertise their business that way. Tim Palm has been drawing elaborate coffee cups, smoothies, arrows and the words ‘Daily Grind Espresso Cafe’ with colorful chalk on Main Street since the couple bought the business in 2004.

At, Matt Steele proposes removing the Cedar Avenue Bridge that splits Lake Nokomis. “The Cedar Ave Bridge over Lake Nokomis was a planning blunder, and the time is here to fix our mistake,” he writes, quoting another writer who noted Cedar is “a clear example of a roadway that went over when it should have gone around.”

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The apex of the cycle? MPR’s Paul Huttner reports, “My eyes can get buggy looking through the lake level data for the past few years, but by my read Monday’s multi-inch deluge pushed Lake Minnetonka to the highest level in nearly 12 years this week. A high water advisory is on effect as you venture out on the lake this weekend.”

The GleanThe Mesabi Daily News says, “The White House has issued a press release praising the U.S. Department of Energy’s involvement in Minnesota Power’s Great Northern Transmission Line project as an example of President Obama’s renewed effort to accelerate and modernize the federal infrastructure permitting process. … The Great Northern Transmission Line was the first project listed in the release as an example of how ‘key reforms’ are already underway.”

Not quite the Rape of Europa … . The AP tells us, “Portraits and busts of noted Minnesota politicians as well as some framed paintings are being systematically removed from the state Capitol. It’s being done to protect them during a ramp-up in construction during the ongoing renovation. Portraits of former Minnesota governors hang on the walls around the century-old building. Ones depicting Rudy Perpich, Tim Pawlenty and other former state leaders have already been taken down.”

In another sweaty embrace of promotion and “journalism,” Matt Brickman of WCCO-TV touts the “viewers’ choice” for “Best Lakeside restaurant.” “Lots of places have pizza and beer, but Hanson took a different approach to the lakeside restaurant. ‘Zorbaz started with ‘Zorba the Greek,’ which was a popular, Academy-Award winning movie in the 60s starting Anthony Quinn’, said [owner Tom Hanson]. ‘He was a fun-loving, free-spirited guy and that’s kinda what I wanted to have in a bar.’” There were days when stations would charge for that kind of plug.