06/04/09: This week’s Minnesota news from other media

When Iowans Fran and Marlow Cowan saw the grand piano in the lobby of Mayo Clinic’s Gonda Building, they stepped up to play one of their duets, writes Sarah Doty in the Rochester Post-Bulletin. They delighted those present – and have became YouTube stars as well; since a bystander who filmed the duo posted the video seven months ago it has surpassed 1.7 million views, the story reported [and since then the video has topped 2.7 million]. The story contains a link to the video.

Mike Zauhar doesn’t want to be the last logger left in the woods of southern St. Louis County, and he’s not going down quietly,” writes John Myers in the Duluth News Tribune. The story says Zauhar, who has tried to help small logging operations like his own, last week took county officials on a tour of the 150-acre Floodwood School Forest, “where he has been experimenting with logging techniques that increase production and timber values while helping wildlife and being gentler on the land.”

Traffic was moving quickly at the International Falls border crossing on Monday, the first day passports were required to enter the United States from Canada, reports John Myers in the Duluth News Tribune. According to the story, border agents have been granted leeway to allow both U.S. and Canadian citizens into the United States even without a passport if they can prove their residency – at least for now.

Area lawmakers are considering seeking $400,000 in state funds to do preliminary studies of a biking and walking trail between Mankato and St. Peter along the Minnesota River,” Mark Fischenich reports in the Mankato Free Press. The report adds that the paved trail would be “a piece of a long-term state plan to build a trail along the length of the Minnesota River valley, and portions of the route are being developed closer to the Twin Cities.”

Starbuck native Matt Kirkwold and his band, the Rocket Club, have been attracting crowds at Twin Cities performances, and its debut CD has made radio playlists, writes Tom Cheverny in the Morris Sun Tribune. He adds, “Rocket Club features three-piece harmonies and songs that tell stories. Promotional materials … point to influences ranging from the Eagles to regional bands like the Jayhawks and Semisonic.”

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