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!
There’s been an exciting acceleration of bike-related activity in and around Northfield over the last few years— clubs, groups, rides, new businesses, and a full calendar of bike races, as well as the City’s Complete Streets Policy, Safe Routes to School Plan and regional collaboration on the Mill Towns Trail and other projects— all signaling Northfield’s potential to become a leading bike town and regional biking destination.
With so much happening on so many fronts, it would be beneficial to gather representatives of local bike groups, and bike-interested community leaders and educators, to share information and explore how we might work together on projects relating to bike education, infrastructure and bike/recreational tourism.
I am writing to invite you to Soup and Cycles,a meeting of representatives of Northfield area bike groups and stakeholders, Thursday, November 14, 5:00-8:00 p.m. at Carleton’s Weitz Center for Creativity. An invitation follows below. I hope you can attend. Representation from each of our area schools will be invaluable to our discussion of potential programs for area youth. The names included in the distribution list for this email were suggested to me by local bike leaders, and I encourage you to review that list, and consider forwarding this email invitation to teachers, PTO leaders and students who are interested in working to create a bike friendly Northfield.
So that we can prepare the right amount of soup, please RSVP by Tuesday, November 12 with a reply email to me at Suzienakasian@gmail.com. Thank you.
Thursday, November 14, 2013, 5:00 – 8:00 pm
Weitz Center for Creativity, Larson Room, 2nd Floor, Carleton College
A light dinner of soup and salad will be provided courtesy of Rice County Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP) and Tandem Bagels.
5:00pm Soup and socializing
5:30pm Welcome and introductions
6:00pm Small group discussions:
Bike Education: ideas for promoting bike safety & share the road principles
Infrastructure: needs relating to on-road, off-road trails and other bike amenities, and
Recreational Tourism: support for bike races and events, and recreational tourism
7:00pm Reports from groups: identified needs, goals and strategies
7:30pm Next steps: communication, leadership and follow-up
This meeting will adjourn by 8pm, in time to head to the GiveMN celebration at The Grand.
Participation is open to community members who are interested in helping to create a bike friendly Northfield.
RSVP Requested: Please reply to email@example.com before the end of the day on Tuesday, November 12 so that we can get a soup count. Thank you.
Thanks to everyone who participated in last night’s Soup and Cycles bike gathering at the Weitz Center! Over 70 people participated including new and lifelong residents, business owners, cycling club members, teachers, and trail and bike enthusiasts from a mix of generations! More than a dozen additional contacts could not attend but expressed an interest in participating as the project moves forward.
Our 3 brainstorming sessions yielded a rich trove of ideas relating to infrastructure, bike education and recreational tourism —-look for a summary of those ideas to follow on Monday. Some projects are already getting underway, and we have the start of an excellent Steering Committee in a core group that has stepped forward . If you are interested to join that group, please let me know.
With so many promising ideas – much help is needed. So please review the discussion notes when you receive them and let me know how you might want to participate. We will be working to set up a website and communication structure to facilitate that work, and to encourage a constellation of related projects which, together, will build a more bike friendly community.
Thank you for your interest and support of this initiative! Look for an email to follow on Monday.
With every best wish,
p.s. A Facebook page is in the works. If you took photos at last night’s event, please forward them to me to post on that site once its launched.
With construction plans for Phase I finalized, Northfield’s Y, which is expected to open in the fall of 2014, will feature an indoor aquatics center, group fitness studio, cardio and wellness floor, supervised children’s center, locker rooms, offices and multi-purpose community gathering space.
Plans for Phase II, featuring a full-size gym and walking track, are in the development stage. The estimated project cost to complete both Phase I and Phase II together is in the $8 to $9 million range.
Here on LoGro, the headlines for all the recent Bridge Square project blog posts will appear in the upper right sidebar. But like I did when I posted updates on the recently completed Downtown Parking Management Plan, comments are turned off here because the discussion happens there.
Among the many developments with the trail that the DNR staff shared were these, most relevant to Northfield and Dundas:
Acquisition of a 6.5 mile railroad right-of-way is in progress to connect Faribault to Dundas
The current Dundas to Northfield segment needs a complete rebuild, but a new route is bring pursued that would be more scenic and eliminate two railroad crossings
Discussions with Union Pacific Railroad on acquiring right-of-way for the segment from Northfield to Lake Byllesby have not been successful; other possible routes are being explored including a combination of private land acquisition and road right-of-way.
I’m particularly intrigued about #2. If you want to know why, ask. Likewise, if you have questions about what’s happening with the trail in the Faribault and Cannon Falls areas, as staff provided updates on developments with those cities, too.
What’s the big problem facing Northfield?
The City of Northfield currently has no plan to provide a visually significant route for Mill Towns Trail bicyclists to ride through Northfield. Those are my words. I use the phrase ‘visually significant’ because DNR staff was unequivocal: a bike trail that appears to end as it enters a city is a giant disincentive for bikers. Yes, trail bikers like to stop in towns along the trail to eat and shop and sightsee. But without strong in-town trail visuals, people tend to not return. The trail itself as it goes through town needs to be memorable, not just the town.
A good example is the visual impact of the Root River State Trail as it goes through downtown Lanesboro (screenshots above from the DNR’s cool virtual tour of the trail). Lanesboro is much smaller than Northfield, of course, so it’s not a perfect comparison. But the point is, once you’ve ridden through Lanesboro on the trail, you don’t forget it and you want to go back.
I started taking photos of Northfield and its community events in 2003 and publishing them on the Northfield.org and Locally Grown Northfield website. My online gallery has over 300 albums with 15,000+ photos. For this exhibit, I have selected images that feature close-ups of various objects with identifiable scenes of Northfield in the background.
All but one of the photos in the exhibit are Northfield-themed macros, hence the show title Near-Far Northfield. The photo above of the flower on Bridge Square with the First National Bank of Northfield in the background is one that Patsy selected for the show’s publicity post cards. And yes, the photos in the show will be for sale.
For the reception and month-long show, I’m teamed up with friend and Northfield artist Joyce Francis. The blurb on her work:
Joyce Francis is an artist with a passion for a newly discovered medium: gel printing. She writes, “I got hooked in early June and have spent the entire summer totally obsessed with gel-plate printing. This mono printing process is full of magical surprises. Even though the artist has control over the design idea one never knows for sure what will be revealed when the paper is pulled off the plate. The possibilities are endless. “ Francis will be demonstrating this process at the opening reception on Sept 9.
After a visit to NYC a year ago, I suggested here on LoGro that the City should put some game tables in downtown Northfield, and that the money should come from the Streetscape Taskforce. I have no idea if A) anyone paid attention to my suggestion; B) where the money for the tables came from; and C) how much the project costs.
But I’m guessing someone will enlighten us.
The three picnic tables were installed yesterday. Each has an inlaid backgammon and chess/checkerboard.
But there’s a way around, as I discovered last night. From Northfield, just ride your bike through the compost facility…
all the way to the back till you arrive at the big rocks by the reconstructed railroad tracks. Then…
you can ride on the tracks a few yards till you get past Spring Creek. The small rocks in between the rails make it pretty level. Alternately, if you’ve got good balance like Danny MacAskill, you can just ride on one of the rails like he does here. Smooooooooth. Then…
ride down the larger rocks (pick your line carefully) and you’ll see the trail a few yards away. Piece ‘o cake.
Bill Steele—one of at least three Northfielders by that name—is not just the owner of EcoTrans but has been involved with a non-profit organization in the Twin Cities called Bolder Options since its inception.
Bill invited me to their open house last Thursday and gave me a ride up in a new EcoTrans Prius (he’s got another that’s closing in on 400,000 miles). Former Northfield Union of Youth Executive Director Amy Merritt, now working with EcoTrans, joined us. From the Bolder Options mission/vision page:
Bolder Options is an innovative organization focusing on healthy youth development. The comprehensive mentoring program, wellness activities, and leadership opportunities coordinate family, community, school, and county resources in a united effort to support youth who are at-risk for dropping out of school or becoming involved in delinquent or unhealthy behaviors.
Bill has been so supportive of Bolder Options for such a long time that they’ve named a conference room after him in their headquarters near downtown Minneapolis. With Bill above (left and center) is Bolder Options President Director Darrell Thompson. (For you non-football types, Darrell is University of Minnesota’s all-time rushing leader and a former Green Bay Packer—first round draft pick in 1990.) On the right: Bill with Darrell’s dad, George Thompson.
Darrell gave us a tour of the facility. I was particularly interested in their use of bicycles, part of their Bolder V3 program which includes youth competing in triathlons – swimming, biking, and running.
But converting the land will neither easy nor cheap. A giant mound of dirt lies on the north part of the land, which not only makes for a poor view, but also causes a lot of problems for the homes in the neighborhood. County engineer Dennis Luebbe estimated it could cost up to $280,000 just to move the dirt.
The type of dirt used to build the features for these parks matters, as the jumps, berms and rollers deteriorate quickly if it’s not hard-pack dirt. I’m guessing that mound of dirt at Fargaze is black dirt.
Griff, I don’t know what the dirt is but I think there must be more than black dirt. If it was most likely there would have been greater erosion. Amateur opinion. The quietness and growing popularity [of bike parks] along with the age range of participation does intrigue me. Thanks for the links and following up.
Last night while riding my around-town bike in the area, I decided to take a closer look. I was shocked to not see black dirt. So today I went back, took photos, and dug (heh) a little deeper. It appears that Councilor DeLong’s amateur opinion was correct.
First, some perspective:
The mound of dirt looking west, south, and north. Far right: looking north from atop the mound.
Left: My markup of the Google Earth view of the Fargaze parcel. Right: satellite view of the neighborhood with the pond and the mound.
Left and center: two of several dirt cuts/washout areas that indicate that the mound is not made of black dirt. Right: the dirt cuts/washout areas viewable from Google Earth’s satellite.
Primary access to the dirt mound is at the corner of Ford St E and Brogan Dr. (left). Once on top, it appears that the mound is big enough to locate a significant portion of a bike park on top of it. The dirt could easily be moved to build the bike park adjacent to / south of where the mound is. Or both.
While I was there, a couple of thugs helpful staffers from the City of Northfield’s Public Works Department pulled up in a city truck to inform me that I was trespassing. I politely thanked them and profusely apologized, promising to never do it again. (Consider this paragraph to be one of these.)
As for the type of dirt needed for a bike park, a guy I know who’s working on the bike park in Cottage Grove wrote to me:
You want to be able to make a dirt ball, like a snow ball out of it. If it holds together, maybe bounce it a little to see how it holds up. If it does, that’s good. Also look for that reddish brown color. That is mineral soil.
I scraped some some dirt from the side of the dirt cut, brought it home, mixed it with some water and made a ball. It split apart when I dropped it from a height of about a foot so it may not be perfect. I put it in the sun and it was baked into a hard rock by day’s end. So it’s definitely promising and probably worth the money to have a company drill soil samples of the dirt mound.
Once the community was ready to develop the park, they reached out to Alpine Bike Parks to develop the full-service public bike park facility. Mechanized construction included slopestyle downhill trails, skills development areas, and competitive mountain cross and dual slalom courses. These trails raised the public profile of the project and assisted in developing capital for future project phases, including additional skills areas, and competitive BMX and mountain bike race courses.
Duration of Construction: Two months
Scope: Master planning, trail design, trail construction, community outreach.
Methods: Excavators, tracked loaders and skid steers, hand shaping
Client: City of Eagle, Idaho
Curious as to what a pump track is all about? Like swinging higher and higher on a swing with no one pushing you, it’s going around and around the track on your bike without pedaling, a foundational skill that makes mountain biking even more fun. Watch this video of instruction for a high school mountain bike team:
Lastly, I realize that neighbors in the area may have concerns about having a bike park adjacent to their property. If you’re a neighbor and reading this, please attach a comment or contact me.
I’m writing today because you’re a source in our Public Insight Network and you’ve told us that you live in Northfield. We’re working on a series of stories that we think you might be able to help us with.
MPR News is been doing a series of stories called “Get Out There,” in which we profile Minnesota towns (you can see them here). We want to find the places, eateries, and activities that might be hidden gems. So we’re coming to you to see what you think people should see, do or eat when they’re in Northfield. If friends were visiting from out-of-town, where would you take them? Please tell us here.
Molly heard from 35 Northfielders and graciously let me follow her around yesterday while she visited some of the recommended "hidden gems."
Her first stop was the Northfield Historical Society where Chip DeMann, Hayes Scriven and Brad Ness tried to impress her with, what else, lots of old stuff.
After a quick couple of photos at the NAG, she bought a cupcake at CakeWalk and forced me to eat half of it.
She chatted with Catherine Dominguez at GBM and took a photo of Nathan Nelson reading newspapers there, a quaint activity that they probably don’t see much of any more in the public media empire. After a visit to the Weitz Center (alas, closed for the summer), she had lunch at Chapati, and then ventured–no further stalking by me–to the Brick Oven Bakery and the Northfield Farmer’s Market in Riverside Park.
She also was witness to how much I get abused by the citizenry on a daily basis, courtesy of Victor Summa and Paul Hager.
Her story should appear on the Get Out There blog on Thursday, at which point, I invite y’all to chime in here with your suggestions on the other places/hidden gems of Northfield that she should also have profiled.
Another (100-year?) rainfall ‘event’ has brought me out of my blogging hiatus.
I took these photos early this afternoon on Armstrong Road near the Northfield compost facility where runoff from this morning’s torrential rainfall cut through the road, washed away the Mill Towns Trail bridge, and completely undermined the railroad bed.
More photos to come? Probably.
Update 7 am, July 14:
More photos to show the size of the washout on Armstrong Road.
A construction crew evidently arrived yesterday and has begun work on the railroad bridge.
I blogged about the SEEDS Project (Social Entrepreneurship Environmental Design and Stewardship) back in July of 2010 so I was glad to get an update about it a couple weeks ago from Seeds Farm Manager Becca Carlson when she stopped by my corner office at GBM.
I asked her to send me a write-up about the recent changes and I’ve included it below.
Here’s Becca’s summary of the latest on the Seeds Farm:
There’s more to eating locally than just the vegetables…
To thrive and survive, humans need to eat every day. For those of us that eat three meals a day, that means each week we have 21 opportunities to make a decision on how we are going to fuel our bodies, what type of agricultural system we are going to support, and what we want our communities and the landscape of America to look like.
Because of this, we have the ability to make a huge impact solely with how we chose to buy and consume food. Here are some reasons why I think it’s important to use our purchasing power to support local and sustainably grown produce:
Excellent taste and freshness
Local food is fresher and tastes better than food shipped long distances from far away. Produce picked and eaten at the height of freshness tastes better.
Celebrate a healthy lifestyle!
You are what you eat-so fill your body with healthy, nutritious and wholesome.
Support our farming neighbors, local economy, & community
Buying locally helps ensure that our local farms keep in business so they can provide you with delicious and nutritious produce, keeps your dollars circulating in our community, and is an investment in healthy communities.
Help preserve the environment
One of the biggest ways we interact with our environment is through agriculture; i.e. how our food was grown. Support farmers that help nurture our resources so they are not depleted for future generations.
Pass on the environmental ethic
Practice what you preach and encourage others to do so as well! When you buy locally produced organic food you cannot help but raise the consciousness of your friends and family about how food buying decisions can make a difference in your life and the life of your community; and about how the basic act of eating is connected to larger issues.
I’ve been using kettlebells ever since Gretchen Falck opened her Forza! studio here in Northfield back in 2008. And my wife Robbie has been a regular at her classes for 3+ years. So when Gretchen is excited about something new, we pay attention. What’s new? See her blog post titled Resiliency! Excerpt:
Forza! is hosting an “Original Strength” workshop on June 22 & 23, 2013 with “Original Strength: Regaining the Body You Were Meant to Have” authors Tim Anderson and Geoff Neupert. Their passion is helping people like you regain your original strength through a simple, and unique way to “reset” your body and overcome movement compensations, dysfunctions, and injuries.
I’m so excited to have these two amazing men come to Forza! and share what they’ve learned about being resilient and regaining our original strength. During this one and a half day workshop, you will learn all of the resets they’ve discovered (rediscovered?) plus determine which resets work for you. While at the “Becoming Bulletproof” workshop I attended last fall, the resets I learned that work for me helped me go from having a difficult time staying in a squat position without falling over to being able to drop into a squat with ease. I found out it had nothing to do with my ankles being tight (which is what if felt like to me), and everything to do with reflexive core stability, which is what these resets will help you get back.
A Bikeable Community Workshop trains local, county and regional staff, and advocates on how to plan and support more Bike Friendly Communities to encourage more people on bikes more often in Minnesota. Participants enjoy a short bike ride to assess their community’s bicycle facilities to base an action plan on. Target audiences include engineers, law enforcement, planners, public health practitioners, school administrators, elected officials, and advocates. The course includes a short bicycle ride auditing your community.
Advise the Mayor, City Council, and Park Board on bicycling related issues; help advance the state of bicycle infrastructure; encourage more people to bike; educate the public; work towards more compliance with traffic laws; help the City and Park Board make bicycle plans; work to increase equity between bicyclist and other modes of transportation; review and suggest legislative and policy changes; recommend priorities for the use of public funds on bicycle projects; help ensure Minneapolis keeps and improves its status as a bicycle friendly community; serve as a liaison between Mpls communities and the City and Park Board, coordinate between difference agencies that interact with bicyclists.
At the April 30 community calendar meeting, participants identified the benefits and concerns of seven calendar concepts. At the end of the meeting, participants were asked to vote yes or no on each one (abstaining was also permitted), answering this question:
Does this calendar type have enough merit to move it forward for more consideration and "fleshing out" with specific detail and actual days?
As you all can imagine, while we knew it was coming, no one expected it so soon. I arrived at noon to relieve Cynthia and he was about the same as yesterday – groggy but awake. The hospice nurse had asked to speak with me and told me she’d seen a marked decline since her visit Saturday, but I knew that. She said the nurses would continue checking on him more frequently which they did.
He was pretty restless most of the day and very confused, but we watched a movie for a bit and he grooved to the Les Mis soundtrack in his wheelchair before asking to go outside for a while. I had a nurse help me with his oxygen and we went to sit in the shade in the courtyard. When he was ready to go back inside he didn’t want me to leave and get a helper, so the two of us somehow managed (mostly me) to get his wheelchair and oxygen tank inside the door, promptly after which he started feeling very ill. The nurse helped him calm down and gave him some medications and a nebulizer, and he seemed relatively stable for a while.
Brett Reese called right around that time and then asked if he could stop by for a few minutes; meanwhile I was trying to communicate with everyone I could who was asking about his status today. Brett arrived just in time to give me a shoulder to cry on. Duane Everson came by to check on Dad and sang to him (as did some other friends earlier).
Dave Topp and my brother Jeff arrived when Dad was feeling particularly antsy, and though he had a ton of meds in him he couldn’t settle into sleep. Whenever one of us suggested he lay down he said, "No." A couple of times I was successful in convincing him to rest, but then he’d sit up again and just rest his hands to his side or his head on his hand.
Sondy Berg Jensen came by to relieve me and help me schedule his helpers over the next several days (and to bring me some much-needed snacks), and soon Dave came out to where we were sitting to tell me that the nurse said I should get back to his room. A few minutes later Dad took his last breaths.
My mom, Nate and Jeff (who had just left and had to turn back around from Richfield) and I gathered in Dad’s room, had some Brandy Dans with Nate and Jeff’s respective significant others, and cried a massive amount of tears. Brett arrived for a visit and was as shocked as we were to find Dad no longer alive.
Dad expressed his wish that the funeral take place at Valley Grove Church, so I’ll be contacting them tomorrow to find a day and time available this week. That will likely be a private service since the church is so small. We decided that we’ll have a public visitation and what I hope will be a big blow-out memorial event to honor my extraordinary father.
When we’ve decided on plans, they’ll be posted in the Northfield News, here, KYMN, Facebook and pretty much everywhere else we can think of.
Thank you to everyone who sent their good wishes, visited Dad, cared for him, and generally loved him.
I’m rather numb as I write this, but I’m going to miss him more than I know right now.
Now raise a glass to Mr. Northfield, a rather spectacular guy.
We’ll be using Google+ Hangout Air for the video conference, embedded on the downtown parking conversation blog. If you’re unable to attend the live conference, I’ll have it archived there shortly after it’s over.
There are three ways for you to participate in this event:
We’ll be using an online text chat feature so that anyone can submit questions for the panel during the video conference.
You can submit questions for the panel ahead of time by either attaching a comment to the blog post, or by using the Contact Us form
After the panel is over, we’ll continue the discussion via blog comment thread till Friday, May 10, possibly later.
Got questions or suggestions? Attach a comment or contact me.
I went to last week’s retirement reception at Northfield City Hall for Lynne Young, Northfield Public Library Director, and Liz Wheeler, Director of Human Resources, IT and Risk. Former Northfield City Administrator and current Edina City Manager Scott Neal was among the dignitaries who attended.
I was pleased that City staff chose one of my photos of downtown Northfield to give to Liz. The photo is used on the City’s new website.
A week ago or more I was having a beer at the Contented Cow when Norman Butler told me that these enterprising college students were organizing a chess tournament.
They sent me this info:
11am-6pm Saturday, May 11, 2013
arrive at 10:45am to enter
The Contented Cow, 302B Division Street South, Northfield, MN 55057
Who can play? You! Everyone, of any age, with any level of experience from novice to master, is welcome. You don’t need to be a member of any chess organization to play or win.
Come to compete with students and teachers from Carleton, St. Olaf, and Northfield High School, as well as other members of the Northfield community! Enjoy chess in a casual tournament setting — with prizes! Arrive by 11am to enter. This is not a rated tournament.
Entry fee is $10 cash (no checks or credit cards), with cash prizes and Chapati gift certificates for winners. Swiss pairing,4 rounds, 30-minute games. First place winner’s name will be displayed on a trophy in the Cow!
If you have a tournament set and clock, please bring them (if you don’t, no worries!). For complete details and to let us know you’re coming (preferred but not necessary), check out the tournament website or contact David McNeil (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Mary Closer, proprietor of swag – fine & funky art in downtown Northfield, stopped by my corner office at GBM last week. She has been spamming her friends and enemies (I think I’m both lists) with this email:
I’m still trying to get votes for the Intuit program that supports small businesses by giving financial support. You just click on the link below and go to the search button. Put in "swag – fine & funky art" and vote for me, oh please. You can vote daily and on all the different kinds of technology you might have access to. You don’t have to sign up for anything or download anything. I’m so very appreciative of the assistance from all of you! I need the boost (hopefully $5K) to keep doing what I hope to be doing for a very long time! Art is my thing! https://www.loveourlocalbusiness.com/
When you get to the vote page (follow her instructions above), you’ll see this text:
I recently took over the store from my 87-year-old Mom. She is my only "employee." I’m 48-years-old and she still bosses me around & makes me get her tacos. I’m trying to incorporate technology in the store for the first time after 10 years in business. I’ve started a website, Facebook page, and am working on getting set up with Quickbooks. I need help! I can’t afford to hire a techo-slave/geek/"pool boy" to help me learn the wonders of QB, WordPress & Twitter & social media "stuff." I long to blog about my fabulous store, but alas, I need $5,000 to pay for my techo-helper! Pretty please!!!
As of this writing (12:22 PM Sunday), she’s at 931 votes. Let’s get over 1,000 by midnight Monday. Vote today and again tomorrow.
Griff Wigley: 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.
Griff Wigley: Northfield News article by Grace Webb: The future of Northfield’s Bridge Square will be topic of second open house
Griff Wigley: Concepts for a Future Bridge Square Save the date: Open House #2, Dec 9, 5:30-7:30 PM, Archer House; Save the date: Live Web Conference, Dec 11, 7-8:30 PM Recent blog posts (these are all clickable links): * Northfield Park &...
Griff Wigley: New post: Oct. 23 Bridge Square open house: photos, documents, comments, feedback
Griff Wigley: Blog posts thus far: * How is the citizen engagement process for the Bridge Square project going to work? October 20, 2013 * Photo flashback: Northfield citizen engagement with John Slack October 19, 2013 * Mrs. Johansen’s popcorn...
Griff Wigley: Northfield City Engineer Joe Stapf sent me these photos today of the repairs to Armstrong Road and the adjacent Mill Towns Trail. Joe wrote: The trail paving is complete (still being rolled so not yet open), and the roadway is...
Doug Peterson: Hi Griff, After reading Jan Hill’s reply, I realize my mis-understanding on “riding the rails”. You got me. Can I blame that on getting old?
Jan Hill: I knew this was a send-up, Griff, having investigated possible routes ourselves (and knowing you!) But I thought for sure the cyclist on the rail was a fake–until I watched the video. Now that’s scary.
Griff Wigley: Nick, I’ve heard from another Northfielder on this who wrote via email: The part where you suggest that riders go on to the active rail line does not make good common sense to me. I have worked on the railroad as a head...
Nick Benson: Your non-pussy readers should note that trespassing on railroad tracks, as shown there, is both dangerous and illegal; trains can be surprisingly quiet when approaching on smooth welded rail like that, which doesn’t...
Ross Currier: I just walked through Bridge Square and ALL THREE of the tables were occupied. It didn’t look like they were playing chess, though, more like eating lunch… …and what a day for it, in beautiful downtown Northfield,...
Griff Wigley: The three picnic tables were installed last week. Each has an inlaid backgammon and chess/checkerboard. I’ve added photos to the blog post above.
Griff Wigley: Joe, thanks for that explanation. And if your eighth grade English teacher, Mrs. Gentilini, is still around, I think she might approve of your communications style.
kiffi summa: Joe or Mr. Stapf… Thanks for the explanation; I think its/they’re great, and long overdue… I just didn’t want anything to put off the Bridge Square redesign implementation … and often it’s...
Joe Stapf: Ah-h-h-h, yes, The Gaming Tables… Question #1) Who authorized them!!!??? I did. The picnic tables (if you recall, a trial) were deemed by me to have been a success. We received absolutely 100%, pure, unadulterated positive feedback...
Griff Wigley: Two new parking-related blog posts: A bicycle field trip with Dale Gehring to get smarter about ‘making the connections’ http://northfielddowntownparki ng.org/2013/08/30/a-bicycle-fi eld-trip-with-dale-gehring-...
Griff Wigley: New blog post: Proposed layout of directional and way-finding signs for public parking
Griff Wigley: New blog post: Washington St. lot restriped to optimize parking spaces
Griff Wigley: Blog post update: recommended downtown parking management action steps for Aug. 13 Council work session
Griff Wigley: Blog post update: July 31 parking management planning meeting at City Hall
Griff Wigley: There is a Prayer Walk for the Northfield School District today, 4-8 pm: By Maria KayLynn Olson and Kiersten-Kiwi Williams Bielenberg Schedule: 4:00-4:25 Prairie Creek 4:30-4:55 Arcadia 5:00-5:25 Greenvale 5:30-5:55 Sibley 6:00-6:25...
Griff Wigley: Hi Marie, thanks for asking. I’ll contact you via email.
Marie Wright: I’d like to use this photo on my website. My theme is vintage Main Street USA. I feel that I need your permission to copy this photo and use it. (Julia Rose Grey is my pen name for my genre of novels.)
Griff Wigley: Dave, I like the two-prong attack, too. Can you let us know when the short-term task force is due to meet? I’d like to attend, and I’m sure some of the neighbors would as well. And make sure that pizza with mushroom...
Griff Wigley: Nfld News article on Tuesday’s Council action on this issue: Subcommittee to explore fixes for tax-forfeited land acquired by Northfield During heavy rain, water has overtaken the yards and basements of Karen Moldenhauer and...
David DeLong: Griff, I’m told there’s over 50,000 cubic yards of dirt in the pile which translates to over 2,500 dump truck loads. I think there’s enough to go around. The problem is moving all that over residential streets, if we sell it or...
Griff Wigley: At last night’s meeting, the City Council opted to A) form a 4-week task force of 3 council members plus engineering staff and citizens to deal with the runoff problem in the neighborhood; and B) ask the Parks & Rec...
kiffi summa: good to know, Griff… I trust that you’re correct about the amount of dirt needed for the create of a bike park. Maybe if there’s so much more than needed, a berm could be created between the park and the houses, if...
Nancy Averill: Ah KDWB. THE best radio station ever. We had the KDW-Beatles. We had the KDW-Beach Boys. We were color radio. We had leaky billboards. I maintain that Professor James Francis Patrick O’Neill is the very basis of my humor. We...
Griff Wigley: Paul/George, they reopened the old culvert and put in a new larger secondary one. I’ll try to get photos.
Griff Wigley: Thanks everyone for your kind comments about the photos. I’ve added a few of downtown to the blog post above. See Rob Hardy’s comprehensive listing of links related to the flooding on Northfield.org.
George Kinney: I agree, Paul. And now would be the time to properly size all three culverts for the three transportation modes cut by the latest flood. Then start thinking about mitigating all the flooding in our region, since it seems to be...
Brendan Gilmore: Amazing pics. Bet you didn’t know one of those orange/yellow lines carries all CenturyLink long distance traffic from the whole state of South Dakota. Still down as of now.
Griff Wigley: July 2 StarTribune: With schedule change ruled out, Northfield looks at other options to close achievement gap Reminder: School Board work session on achievement gap and ‘summer slide’ to follow Monday’s Board...