April 2018: North Minneapolis at a glance


UROC will honor Prince through activities and conversation on April 14: Held in conjunction with the University of Minnesota’s two-day Prince from Minneapolis Symposium (April 16 – 18), Prince Day at UROC is free and open to everyone. In addition to many family-friendly activities, the event will feature a very special UROC Critical Conversation—Prince’s Legacy: A Family Value. Critical Conversation panelists, including members of Prince’s extended family as well as University of Minnesota researchers and community experts, will explore Prince’s unique relationship to North Minneapolis. Many questions will be discussed, including: What role did Prince’s biological and extended family play in his musical development, commitment to philanthropy and eventual rise to stardom? And, how did the Northside community at that time help foster Prince as a young man and artist? “Prince’s legacy really is about community and family,” says panelist Artika Roller. The community relations manager with the Hennepin County Department of Health and Human Services, Roller will speak to the importance of Prince’s connection to community and family. “He loved his community and stayed connected to it, and that had a big influence on his art and creation of what we now think of as the Minneapolis sound.” Photo by Kenzie O'Keefe


#ChangeTheName: Students at Patrick Henry High school have been organizing for over a year now to change their school's name. Founding father Patrick Henry was a slave owner throughout his life. In March, student organizers hosted public meetings to explain their reasoning to community members. “When I walk into this school, I am reminded of that historical trauma. I am reminded of the same things as a Jew[ish] girl my age walking into a school named after Hitler. That’s how deep this is. This is why we are up here. This is not just a white or black cause. This is a cause for humanity. This man had people shackled," said one student. PHHS senior Semaj Rankin says he'll keep fighting for the name change after he graduates this spring if necessary. Rankin says the name change will cost the district thousands of dollars, but that #ChangeTheName organizers are fundraising for these costs. Some have suggested that the school be renamed Unity or Camden High School. Photo by Kenzie O'Keefe


North Minneapolis students march for their lives in Washington D.C:  Northside teens from several different high schools traveled to our nation's capitol for "March For Our Lives" on March 24. "The Northside group came together to not only fight against the negligence of the NRA and government officials, but to nourish the power within [ourselves] and [our] community. Enough is enough," said Azhae'la Hanson, a North News photographer who attended the march with many of her classmates and took this photos. Pictured here, North High junior Chris Jennings calls "Save the babies, not the .380s," as he march to the Capitol building. Photo by Azhae'la Hanson


Shiloh Temple will soon be home to a community solar garden: In just a few months, the rooftop of Shiloh Temple International Ministries (STIM) will be turned into a solar garden. The garden, which is being built in partnership with Masjid An Nur, will provide solar energy for both faith communities, as well as over two dozen North Minneapolis homes. Low income communities often don’t have access to solar energy because excellent credit is typically required to purchase solar panels. “This is a triumphant moment for our community. We are proud that this roof of 630 panels, 204 kilowatts of power, will provide electricity for many in the same community,” said Bishop Howell of STIM at the groundbreaking ceremony for the garden. “God said let there be light and there was light. And God saw the light and it was good. Today we recognize that same light has come to this community from a roof that will provide the right light for energy, power, and opportunity.” The solar garden is one of many non-traditional economic initiatives being taken by local religious institutions in efforts to empower the community and remain relevant. Read more here. Photo by David Pierini


The Goddess of Glass wins “Best Place to Take an Art Class" for second time: For the second year in a row, the Goddess of Glass has won the award from Minnesota Women's Press. Located at 4400 Osseo Road, the Goddess of Glass is a consignment shop for North Minneapolis artists and the studio space connected to it is home to a range of classes on everything from glass fusing to cookie decorating also taught by Northside artists. Its owner and proprietor Connie Beckers has lived in North Minneapolis for the last 52 years, nearly all her life. Beckers' classes are designed for individuals, families, and couples. With restaurant Tori 44 soon to open across the street, all the makings for a great date night can be found on one Northside corner. More information on the store can be found at goddessofglass.com. Photo by Cirien Saadeh


New bakery receives rave reviews: The Thirsty Whale, 4149 Fremont Ave N, North Minneapolis’ brand new and only bakery, opened its doors on Feb. 10 to rave reviews and block-long lines. “I’m looking forward to supporting a Northside business, as well as the donuts. It’s just beautiful,” said Peggy Burress, a long-time Northsider, who waited in line for donuts for nearly an hour on the day the Thirsty Whale opened. The bakery, which specializes in custom cakes as well as donuts, is open every weekday (except Monday) from 6:30am-6pm, Saturdays from 7am-3pm, and Sundays from 7am-1pm. Photo by Jaylen Green

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Eggstravaganza is back for a third year: Over 50,000 eggs will be dropped by helicopter over North Commons Park again this year for Easter. The third annual community Eggstravaganza will take place on April 7 from 1-4pm. Originally, this year's event was scheduled for March 24, but weather required it to be rescheduled. In addition to the egg drop, the event will offer bounce houses, face painters, a balloon artist, and live entertainment. Last year, thousands of people attended. The Strong Roots Foundation organizes the event every year in collaboration with the Minneapolis Park & Recreation Board because "we believe the North Minneapolis community should have more," said organizer Shameka Bogan. So Low Grocery, KMOJ, and Shiloh Temple International Ministries also help sponsor the event. "The faces of the kids when they see the helicopter and thousands of eggs pour out is truly priceless!" said Bogan. The event is also a food drive, so organizers request that attendees bring a non-perishable food item to donate to NorthPoint Health & Wellness' food shelf. All are welcome.

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Penn Ave. Improvements Project:  Bus transit on Penn is about to be modernized, but first, community members will feel some major inconveniences along the corridor. From now until December, portions of Penn Ave. will be closed and torn up as the C-Line bus rapid transit (BRT) line is constructed. Road improvements will be made to accomodate larger buses, and larger bus stations will be built. The C-Line is only the second BRT line of its kind in the region, and Metro Transit describes it as "a package of transit enhancement that adds up to a faster trip and an improved experience on Metro Transit's busiest bus routes." The C-Line will follow the Route 19 path, but it will run more frequently and make less stops, offering faster service between downtown and Brooklyn Center. C-Line buses will arrive every 10 minutes; the Route 19 will continue making more local stops, arriving every 30 minutes. If construction goes according to plan, the C-Line will open for service in Spring 2019. During construction, cross traffic will be maintained at Dowling, Lowry, Broadway, Golden Valley Road, and Plymouth. The 19 will be detoured. Road closures will begin on the south end of the corridor during the second week of April. Sign up for weekly C-Line construction bulletins at www.metrotransit.org/penn. Sign up for Route 19 rider alerts at www.metrotransit.org/rider-alerts/19.

Street sweeping begins mid-April:  For about four weeks, beginning April 17, crews will sweep more than 1,000 miles of city streets and alleys. To make sure the crews can do the most complete job possible, temporary “No Parking” signs will be posted at least 24 hours in advance to make sure streets are clear of parked vehicles. Drivers need to follow street sweeping parking rules or they may have their cars ticketed and towed to the Minneapolis Impound Lot. Folks can use a tool on the City’s website to find out when the sweeping crews are coming through their neighborhoods. By the Friday before the first week of the sweep, people can go to www.minneapolismn.gov/publicworks/streetsweeping and click on “street sweeping schedule lookup” to find out when a street is scheduled to be swept

Kenzie O'Keefe