Father’s Day With a Bit of Grit

When the kids get out of school and are around all summer, sometimes parents need to get creative on how to keep them busy and get them out of the house. And each year, some families wonder what is the perfect gift to give dad for Father’s Day. Well, how about checking out the way life was back in the 19th century agricultural industry?

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A Wonderful Getaway From the Busy Cities

Willow Falls - Courtesy of Forrest McCullough

Summer has finally come to Minnesota. The sun burns late in the day and green has crawled out of the darkness to cover the trees again. Parks are filled with eager children. Beaches are occupied by van-loads of families. The swooshing noises of the boats buzzing past each other on the lakes are accompanied by the gleeful barking of the family dog.

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Mosquitoes Naturally Prefer Some People

Mosquitoes

I have lived in Minnesota for nearly my entire life, almost 22 years now, and I wouldn’t change much about it other than our luck in sports (but, hey! those Twins), the humidity and mosquitoes. All the mosquitoes can burn forever (I know that sounds spiteful).

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Winter Trout Season Arrives in Minnesota

trout

In most instances, when you go ice fishing at 6:30 a.m. in January, only the serious fishermen will be on the ice to join you.

Then there is the winter trout-fishing opener on Courthouse Lake in Chaska.

The annual event, which this year occurred on Saturday, Jan. 17, allows winter anglers the opportunity to pull trout – in some cases, extremely large trout – through the ice. When my two friends and I visited the lake this year, we were amazed to see hundreds, literally hundreds of ice houses decorating that lake prior to 7 a.m., with the crack of dawn still an hour away. As we approached the lake that morning, the hum of motorized ice augers spun through the pleasantly-warm air. Well, pleasantly warm for Minnesota in January, that is.

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Minnesota Endangered Species List Part of a Larger Picture

endangered species

Carol Pruette has never seen an Indochinese tiger. Until someone mentioned the name, she’d never heard of a Ganges River dolphin.

Pruette, a resident of Marshfield, Missouri, is neither an animal expert nor a biologist so it perhaps comes as no surprise she is a not familiar with two of the many animals species considered endangered on earth.

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Autumn and the Beauty it Brings

Autumn leaves

I love autumn. I think it’s my favorite season. Autumn reminds me of hunting season, football season, and the Twin Cities Marathon season. It’s also almost perfect weather-wise. The air is crisp in the morning, warm by midday then chilled and still by evening. But one thing I love more than all of the above, one thing that makes me happy to live in this state above all else, the changing colors of the trees.

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NASA Reports the Earth Avoided a Catastrophic Disaster in 2012

sun flare - CME

Imagine that none of your electrical appliances work because you have no power. Or, you aren’t able to flush your toilet.

These are some of the potential consequences of a solar storm that occurred on July 23, 2012. The sun unleashed two clouds of plasma, known as coronal mass ejections (CMEs) that made up a solar storm that barely missed an encounter with the Earth’s atmosphere.

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St. Paul’s ‘Urban Flower Field’ Set to Grow Plentiful Gardens of Flowers

urban flower field - st paul

For decades the Pedro luggage business sat on the corners of Jackson and 10th Street downtown Saint Paul. However, the building which was erected in the 1960s was torn down in 2008. The land was donated by the Pedro family to Saint Paul with plans to build a park. Now sits an art-park-project for all those who pass by to enjoy.

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Conservative Deer Hunting Season for 2014

DNR Deer Hunting Zone Map 2014

A harsh winter and an abundance of hunter concerns have led Minnesota’s Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to reduce the number of deer that will be taken this year. In some areas (like the one I hunt in) the option to buy a second tag (or bonus permit) is no longer on the table; other zones have changed from “hunter choice” (one deer of either gender) to “lottery” (random selection of doe tags for those who apply between August 1st and September 4th). The most notable change however, is the conversion of the entire northeastern part of the state to antler only (with no option, even for archers, to take antler-less).

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‘Invasive Carp’ Invading at Last

Bighead Carp - Elizabeth Sellers

The high waters of Minnesota’s lakes and rivers have done more than closed parks, beaches and walking paths this year; the burgeoning Mississippi may have created the perfect conditions for enticing the infamously named “Invasive Carp” to visit our beloved state. Commercial fishermen contracted by the Department of Natural Resources caught a gravid (carrying eggs) female from each of the two threatening species (bighead and silver) in Cottage Grove this past Thursday.

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