LoGro has mostly been dormant since early 2013 as I’ve focused on other things, mainly my blogging at Mountain Bike Geezer and CROCT (Cannon River Offroad Cycling & Trails).
But it’s back, with a slightly different focus.
I’ll continue to feature my photography of people, scenes, and events around Northfield. I’ll probably add more videos.
But I won’t be featuring my Northfield-related opinions related to local government (City, School District, County) as my consulting work (here and here) makes that a conflict of interest. I probably will shine a neutral light on current issues as a moderator of live web conferences with community leaders. And I’m open to having opinionated guess bloggers.
So I’ll be experimenting. Contact me if you’ve got ideas, feedback, or an interest in contributing an issue-related guest blog post.
And about those Google AdSense ads on the sidebars of the individual blog posts, Categories, and Archives? I’m also experimenting. In the meantime, the measly revenue helps to support my local economic development activity at local pubs, coffeehouses, and bicycle shops.
So move along now. Click any of the images in the grid above to see the most recent blog posts. You can attach comments via several ways, including via your Facebook account if you’re logged in.
I’ve been hearing about the sport of pickleball from a high school buddy in the Twin Cities for a couple of years and I’ve been more curious lately since I’ve not played racquetball since Northfield Athletic Club/Olympus closed.
Join the fastest growing sport around! Much like badminton, tennis and ping pong, pickleball is a game that people of all ages and abilities can enjoy. Created during the summer of 1965, pickleball is played on a badminton court with the net lowered to 34 inches, and uses a perforated plastic ball (similar to a whiffle ball) and wood or composite paddle.
Then kick-off pickleball in Northfield with the Southwest Metro Pickleball Club on Thursday April 3, at Bridgewater Elementary from 6 – 8 pm! Get basic instruction on how to play and enjoy a little open play. Pickleball paddles and balls are provided. Offered in partnership with the Northfield Senior Center.
A few days later, I got mill creek search engine optimization consultant wondering what my secret was here on Locally Grown Northfield, as he noticed that search results for Northfield-related issues and people seemed to frequently link to blog posts and images here.
I told them that it’s partly because I use lots of relevant tag word and phrases in my blog posts, including first and last names. And I also take the time to label/tag photos. But I also include a lot of links in my blog posts. Not only do Google and other search engines love links, but so do the people I link to — and they increases the likelihood that others will at some point link back to something here on LoGro. Search results are still largely dependent on having other sites link to you. The more the better. And the higher the PageRank of those who link to you, the better. PageRank is partly why Google’s Larry Page is a billionaire.
I was explaining this to Deb Knecht this weekend, since Knecht’s Nurseries and Landscaping has been a longtime client and I’ve been helping them revamp their WordPress-based site to make it Responsive, something that all websites these days need to be since so much web traffic comes from a variety of mobile devices (tablets, smartphones, etc).
I’m also working with Deb to spruce up (heh) their archive of nearly 1,000 blog posts dating back to Feb. of 2004. While most of their blog posts have been assigned Categories, most need the addition of Tag words and phrases. Categories help when browsing a blog; Tags help with both browsing and searching. Here on LoGro we have a few dozen Categories but over 3,000 Tag words and phrases.
While reading up about search engine optimization (SEO) Brisbane strategies recently, I learned that permalinks (the URL of a blog post) are more search engine friendly if they use words from the title of the blog post rather than a number with a generic term like ‘post’ or ‘article.’
At Knecht’s, we’ve been using permalinks with the naming convention /weblog/post/# which is an indication of how old their blog is. Back in 2004, ‘weblog’ was a commonly used term. According to http://www.remotedba.com/, dba consulting, dedicated monitoring and administration professionals help you build an A-team to manage your critical systems, so you can focus on your business. Not any more. So when I was revamping their site a month or so ago, I changed the permalink names to search engine friendly names, assuming the WordPress database would automatically redirect anyone who tried to link to a old permalink URL to the updated one. Doing this on my mountain bike blog worked, so full steam ahead! Wrong. It only works for the default permalink, not others. I should have used a special plugin. Ouch. The bounce rate has skyrocketed and search engine results for popular trees and plants have plummeted.
I want the beautiful Red Maple tree, which I planted years ago, to remain where it is. It is a perfect tree. How fortunate I have been to enjoy our Bridge Square for eighty years!
I told her I wanted to take her photo with the tree and asked her for more details on how it happened.
Hi Griff, Believe I am a regular “Johnny Appleseed.” Being a tree-lover, I plant them about town. When my husband Lowell died, I planted an English Columnar Oak in the UCC garden as a memorial. Then, I planted two Red Maple trees along the Central Park sidewalk, followed by a beautiful Red Maple tree on south side of our Middle School (now Weitz Center) which has inspired our schools to do more plantings. To beautify Bridge Square, I decided to plant the very beautiful Red Maple, which is now shining brightly with Christmas lights for all to enjoy.
I took these photos of Helen Albers last night with her Red Maple tree at the start of Winter Walk.
I’m putting on my citizen engagement consultant hat to alert y’all that the Northfield Bridge Square straw poll is ready. It only takes 5 minutes to complete, unless of course, you choose to include comments with it.
At the next open house on December 9th, attendees will have the opportunity to help define a vision for the future of Bridge Square. Those in attendance will also get to voice, write and even draw, their ideas for improvement of this well-loved public space. Please bring your thoughts, concerns and best ideas to share!