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DNR claims more evidence of gold deposits on Iron Range

Plus: more questions raised in Minneapolis superintendent search; pole-dancing competition in Maplewood; Dayton to release bonding proposal; and more.

A mineral-based boom — just what the Iron Range economy needs! Forum News Service’s John Myers reports on some, perhaps, wishful thinking from the DNR: “The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources reports finding more grains of gold on the surface of forested land southeast of Soudan. … The latest findings bolster the DNR Minerals Division’s last report in July that surprisingly high numbers of gold grains were being found. …The DNR is hoping a private company will use the survey results and lease mineral rights on some of the land in the area to start boring holes to see if and where the mother lode exists.”

Just asking questions. The Star Tribune’s Alejandra Matos reports on the enduring saga of the search for a Minneapolis Public Schools superintendent: “With hours to go before a vote on the next Minneapolis school superintendent, some school board members are questioning the last-minute revelation of a connection between interim superintendent Michael Goar and the Massachusetts district of his rival, Sergio Paez. … in recent days, news surfaced that Goar previously worked with Stephen Zrike, who took control of the Holyoke school district from Paez last year. From 2007 to 2010, Zrike worked as a school principal under current Goar in Boston. … ‘I had to Google this guy because I didn’t remember him,’ Goar said Monday night. ‘I have no relationship with Steve. Until just today, I didn’t know Steve was in charge of Holyoke.’ ”

You’ve gotta stay active. Pioneer Press’ Richard Chin reports on one increasingly popular option: “Here are a couple of things you needed to do to avoid a deduction in points if you were competing in the Minnesota Regional Pole Competitions on Saturday: Don’t land on your head. And no nudity or costume malfunctions, please. … In other words, this wasn’t your grandmother’s pole dancing experience. … First of all, for the top participants, the competition was a intense gymnastic endeavor, in which competitors frequently were dangling and spinning upside down while doing the splits, 10 feet above the floor, holding onto a metal pole thanks mainly to skin friction and hours of core workouts … .”

Friday is Christmas for Minnesota municipalities. That’s when Gov. Mark Dayton plans to release his bonding proposal, which, as the Rochester Post Bulletin’s Heather J. Carlson notes, includes a high-stakes bid for Rochester’s aiport to retain its “International” status: “The city of Rochester is seeking nearly $5 million from the state to upgrade the U.S. Customs facility at Rochester International Airport. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has told the airport the existing facility fails to meet federal requirements and if it is not upgraded, the airport could lose its international designation, becoming Rochester Municipal Airport. The project’s total price tag is $10.5 million. The city of Rochester would chip in $2.8 million in local sales tax dollars, and the airport would dedicate two years of Federal Aviation Administration dollars to come up with the remaining $2.7 million.”

In other news…

City Pages reporter Susan Du is a terrible shot

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The Walker Art Center is dropping D’Amico in favor of Dallas-based Culinaire International. [Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal]

Here’s Southwest Journal columnist (and MinnPost contributor) Jim Walsh’s tribute to David Bowie.

Meet Octavius, the octopus. [Pioneer Press]