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Minnesota students rally to protest gun violence

Plus: National Weather Service says four tornadoes touched down in Minnesota on Memorial Day; open seats on Ramsey County Board draws crowd of candidates; marketing campaign encourages people to return to Minneapolis; and more.

Crosses with the names of victims of the school shooting outside Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.
Crosses with the names of victims of the school shooting outside Robb Elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.
REUTERS/Marco Bello

The Star Tribune’s Eder Campuzano writes: “Hundreds of teens flocked to downtown Minneapolis on Tuesday demanding elected officials, from school board members to state legislators, adopt a series of measures to curb gun violence in the wake of last week’s horrific school shooting in Uvalde, Texas. … Students left school at 12:30 p.m. Tuesday and trickled into Gold Medal Park for the next half-hour. A group of speakers convened by teen advocacy group MN Teen Activists took turns detailing their demands of elected officials. … Tuesday’s walkout echoes similar protests held after the 2018 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. Youth activists across the country gathered in major cities and state capitols to demand gun control legislation weeks after that shooting.”

FOX 9 reports: “The National Weather Service has confirmed four tornadoes in Minnesota from the storms on Memorial Day.  Weather officials say an EF-2 tornado caused ‘quite extensive’ damage in Forada. Survey teams estimate the max wind speeds were 120 mph with a half-mile path width and evidence of multiple vortexes. Some of the worst damage was spotted in the small city of Forada, Minnesota, just south of Alexandria.”

In the Pioneer Press, Frederick Melo writes: “With longstanding Ramsey County Commissioners Jim McDonough and Toni Carter retiring from office this year, a sizable slate of candidates have filed to run for the open seats in their St. Paul-based districts, including six candidates for McDonough’s seat alone. … Candidates for the District 4 seat currently held by Carter, who has chosen not to run for re-election, include state Rep. Rena Moran, DFL-St. Paul, George H. Jackson, Darryl Spence and Barbara Bolar. In District 5, another St. Paul-based district, Commissioner Rafael Ortega faces two perennial candidates for elected office: Bill Hosko and Charles Barklind. With McDonough retiring, candidates for the District 6 seat include former County Commissioner Dino Guerin, Mai Chong Xiong, Ying Vang-Pao, Greg Copeland, Clara O. Ware and Foua-Choua Khang.”

At KARE-TV, Gordon Severson says, “Minnesota veterans and their families will soon be eligible for a bonus of up to $2,000. The Minnesota legislature and Governor Tim Walz recently approved the creation of a $25 million fund for veteran bonuses. Minnesota veterans who served between 9/11 and August of 2021 will qualify for this money. Governor Walz says it’s a small thank you to the service these veterans provided for their state and their country.”

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This from Nicole Norfleet of the Star Tribune: “Have you recently enjoyed a night out at a show at the Guthrie or a bike ride around the Chain of Lakes? You could soon see yourself on a billboard. To coax more people from the Twin Cities suburbs to visit Minneapolis again, promoters are using digital billboards to advertise the ‘positive stories of people enjoying the city.’ The purpose of the Minneapolis Momentum marketing campaign is to encourage people to return to Minneapolis restaurants, stores and other establishments.”

Maria Laube at KSTP says, “As several Minnesota COVID-19 testing sites have closed in the month of May alone, a new and free option may expand access to testing nationwide. Walgreens has collaborated with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to offer at-home PCR tests at more than 1,000 of its stores, according to its site. Services are now available in the Minneapolis area. Customers can pick up the free Pixel by Labcorp COVID-19 at-home collection kits, no insurance necessary, in-store or at the curb.”

Says the Star Tribune’s Jeremy Olson, “Minnesota’s latest COVID-19 data show more evidence of a peak in the state’s spring wave, and that vaccines helped blunt its severity even if they were less protective than earlier in the pandemic. The state on Tuesday reported another 2,188 infections, but the seven-day average of new infections peaked on May 11 and has declined steadily. The 419 COVID-19 hospitalizations in Minnesota on Friday were an increase from earlier in the week but still lower than the recent high of 441 on May 19 — with only 8% of patients needing intensive care. As many as 30% of COVID-19 hospitalizations involved intensive care during peaks last year.”

This from Peter Passi of the Duluth News Tribune, “A GoFundMe account has been created to support the family of City Councilor and former Council President Renee Van Nett as her death nears. The GoFundMe page, ‘Renee Van Nett Family,’ says: ‘Renee Van Nett is currently in the hospital in Duluth, battling a terminal illness. Renee’s courage and bravery have inspired many, and it’s time to have her back after she’d had ours so often.’ Van Nett, who represents the 4th District on the council, has suffered a relapse after previously fending off a bout with cancer. She is a patient at Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center.”


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