Few people enjoyed a better 2016-17 than Blair Braverman. She stormed the New York City publishing world and gained status as a feminist iconoclast with her book, "Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube." She elevated the sport of dogsledding with her warm and insightful social media posts. She pressed her voice further into the male-dominated world of outdoor adventure writing by becoming a staple contributor to Outside magazine.
The home of UMD basketball, volleyball and more for almost 64 years will be getting its biggest upgrade to date with Monday's announcement of a $10 million renovation. "It's exciting to have a facility that is going to fit the excellence of our student-athletes and our institution," University of Minnesota Duluth Athletic Director Josh Berlo told the News Tribune. "It's going to be a top-notch competitive facility and a top-notch educational facility essential to our success."
While Rick Nolan legislates in Washington, D.C. as the current representative from Minnesota's 8th Congressional District, the race for the seat in the 2018 midterm election is swirling around him. Last week, Nolan, D-Crosby, voted to reject the Republican tax plan, calling it a "tax scam" aimed at helping the super-rich and big corporations.
A two-year strengthening project on the Oliver Bridge that has seen the passage between Minnesota and Wisconsin closed during daytime hours for construction is nearing an end. "We expect the road will be open permanently starting at the end of the day Tuesday," said Canadian National Railway spokesman Patrick Waldron. Users of the bridge that crosses over the St. Louis River have been limited to early morning and evening travel to accommodate a project that started in spring 2016.
Bob Monahan stood where Garon Bros. jewelry store on West First Street had been for 110 years through 2013. A rock-and-roll impresario in Duluth, Monahan was talking about his new venture into the hospitality industry. He recounted the first step he took at turning the former jewelers' space into the city's first hostel, due to open in June. "Free all the brick and the wood — expose it," Monahan said, exuding a cheery vibe.
A packed rededication ceremony Wednesday at Gateway Tower Apartments featured a nine-batter lineup of speakers — commentary in itself about the number of agencies required to come together to save the downtown Duluth complex. "Only in Duluth," said Warren Hanson, president of the St. Paul-based Greater Minnesota Housing Fund, which secured more than two-thirds of the $18.5 million needed for the reconstruction project.
With three years of Superior Street reconstruction through downtown Duluth beginning in 2018, Mayor Emily Larson let it be known she's attuned to the ensuing disruption — in part because it's personal. "My husband and I, we're business owners and he's got an architecture firm now on Superior Street," she said. "They just moved around the corner — they were on Lake (Avenue), they're now on Superior. He doesn't have a secondary entrance. We're now in it with everybody as it relates to what the impact is going to be."
St. Louis County Attorney Mark Rubin once called First Witness Child Advocacy Center an "amazing place" for the way it impacts lives during criminal investigations involving child victims. The agency in the Central Hillside neighborhood of Duluth originated more than 25 years ago — inconspicuously carrying out the sensitive duty of interviewing children during cases involving abuse and sexual assault.
When a Miami-based cruise ship company brings passenger cruises back to Lake Superior next summer, Frederick Stonehouse will be aboard at least one of the voyages. The acclaimed Great Lakes author-historian will share his deep knowledge of the lakes as he sails on the Victory II on its way from Milwaukee to Thunder Bay. "One company is taking over the entire boat," he said. "It will have a very large educational component."
A town hall meeting Monday about a DFL-backed health coverage initiative drew high-ranking state officials, state representatives and three dozen others in the audience, including Ely resident Teri Haapala. "Who can afford an 85 percent increase in anything?" she said prior to the event at Duluth City Hall — referring to her monthly premiums which escalate annually while providing her with increasingly higher deductibles and reduced access to physicians of her choosing.