Taste of Northfield is Thursday. Severe weather sirens are tuned up and on alert

NDDC's Ross CurrierTaste of Northfield 2013

NDDC head honcho Ross Currier stopped by my corner office at GBM this morning to remind me that Taste of Northfield 2013 is tomorrow.  As usual, he’s concerned about the weather since it’s a one-day event with a history of meteorological dramatics.

Photo album: Bridge Square Band debuts at Taste of Northfield

Trumpet player Dan Bergeson Bridge Square Band debuts at Taste of Northfield 2012
A few of the regulars from the Northfield Community Band have formed the Bridge Square Band and made their debut at the Taste of Northfield last week.

Trumpet player Dan Bergeson introduced the band to the crowd and they got a few numbers in before the storm hit.

See the large slideshow of 14 photos (recommended) or this small slideshow:

Taste of Northfield: Should we rename it Defeat of Mother Nature Days?

Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square
The weather for Taste of Northfield 2012, Round 2 started out gorgeous on Thursday afternoon (it was rained out in June) and Bridge Square began filling up with hungry townsfolk.

Thunderstorm approaching, Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square Thunderstorm approaching, Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square
But around 6 pm, a small but powerful thunderstorm drew a bead on downtown Northfield.

Thunderstorm,Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square Thunderstorm,Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square Thunderstorm,Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square
The storm sent the townsfolk running for cover. After the rain let up a bit, I rode my bike home, assuming it was all over for the night.

Taste of Northfield 2012, Bridge Square Some woman named Sarah bestowing her charms upon Ross Currier
I returned an hour later, shocked to see Bridge Square packed with people eating and musicians performing. Women were bestowing their charms upon NDDC‘s Ross Currier in appreciation, his Alaskan donut addiction notwithstanding.  Once again, Northfield citizens had pulled together to defend the town.

Let’s hope public safety officials continue being judicious about the use of severe weather warning sirens

June 17, 2010: the mildly ominous sky that triggered storm sirens Jessica Paxton and Ross Currier, unhappy that the Taste got shut down

Two years ago on Day 1 of the Taste of Northfield, local public safety officials triggered sirens for a storm that was 60 miles away and never arrived, effectively shutting down the event for no good reason and making Jessica and Ross very unhappy. Day 2/Friday night was spectacular.

Today, severe weather is a distinct possibility and this year, Taste of Northfield is only one day, not two. (Tomorrow’s forecast looks perfect for outdoor events.) So a lot is riding on today’s weather. 

I think there have been 4 or more severe thunderstorms warnings issued by the National Weather Service in the Twin Cities (NWS) for the Northfield area this year (anyone have links to confirm?) and I’m pretty sure all have proved to be a bust. Maybe a lightning strike or two but nothing close to severe. 

Thankfully, local public safety officials who have their finger on the sirens have not pulled the trigger on any of those non-severe storms. And hopefully today, they’ll be likewise judicious.

Get your Taste of Northfield raffle tickets at Monkey See Monkey Read for a chance to win $1000

Taste of Northfield 2012 raffle tickets Jerry Bilek and Griff Wigley

Stop by Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore today and tomorrow to get your raffle tickets. Griff did. 

Or you can get them from me on Bridge Square later in the afternoon on Thursday.

Ross says you can get a very good Taste of Northfield on Thursday

Ross Currier Taste of Northfield 2012 poster Taste of Northfield 2012 schedule of events Taste of Northfield 2012 banner Taste of Northfield 2012 banner

NDDC honcho Ross Currier stopped by my corner office at GBM last week to bug inform me about the Taste of Northfield coming up this week on Thursday.

See the NDDC’s Taste of Northfield page for all the details.

NDDC issues proclamation for days of prayer for sun in Northfield for the Taste of Northfield 2011

Ross Currier praying at the Church of the Blue Monday Taste of Northfield banner 
NDDC‘s Ross Currier has taken a cue from Governor Rick Perry’s Proclamation for Days of Prayer for Rain in Texas to issue a similar but opposite proclamation for Northfield this week. I took the photo of him on his knees this morning at the Church of the Blue Monday where we both attend religiously.

He wants sunny skies for the Sixth Annual Taste of Northfield (blog post here, full event info/schedule here), held tomorrow and Friday in downtown Northfield on Bridge Square.

Last year’s Taste was memorable; Day 1/Thursday night was a bust (photos) in part because of a botched triggering of severe weather sirens; Day 2/Friday night was spectacular (photos).

See all Locally Grown’s archived Taste of Northfield blog posts and photos for more.

Here’s the transcript of Ross’ adapted prayer for fair weather:

Almighty Lord God, who for the sin of man didst once drown all the world, except eight persons, and afterward of thy great mercy didst promise never to destroy it so again; We humbly beseech thee, that although we for our iniquities have worthily deserved a plague of rain and waters, yet upon our true repentance thou wilt send us such weather for the Taste of Northfield, that we may receive the fruits of the earth in due season; and learn both by thy punishment to amend our lives, and for thy clemency to give thee praise and glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

6th Annual Taste of Northfield Up Next!!

June in Northfield means graduation and summer vacation. It also means that one of the best-loved community events of the year, The Taste of Northfield, is almost upon us. This year will be the 6th Annual Taste and the event is scheduled for Thursday, June 16th and Friday June 17th from 5-10 p.m. both evenings. All of the festivities happen in or near Bridge Square in Downtown Northfield. What a fantastic location for fun!

There will be a dozen or more food vendors (we’re still working on the lineup) surrounding the Square serving up their own special menus. There will be entertainment on the Showmobile both nights and a Beer and Wine Tent on the 4th Street bridge. The James Gang will do a Bank Raid re-enactment on Thursday night and Friday will bring the return of both a Silent Auction and a Live Auction. Both nights will feature a Street Dance from 8-10.

If you’re feeling up to it, this event also brings a great opportunity to volunteer. We need folks to sell tickets, police the waste stream, control admittance to the Beer Tent, tally up the silent and live auction bids, you name it! If this possibility speaks to you, contact rcurrier@nddc.org.

Did I mention that The Taste of Northfield is an official Northfield Downtown Development Corporation (NDDC) event? It is. And we couldn’t do it without the incredible financial sponsorship given to us by:





I hope to see all of you next week  at The Taste of Northfield! And no tornado this year. Promise! For up-to-the-minute details, visit Taste of Northfield 2011.


Should Crazy Daze be two days?

Division St, 6:30 am, 7/22/2010 Division St, 6:30 am, 7/22/2010 7-22-2010 6-29-13 AM radar
The scene on Division St at 6:30 this morning was rather bleak.  The radar doesn’t offer  much encouragement, nor does Paul Douglas’ forecast.

Should the Northfield Area Chamber of Commerce’s Crazy Daze (PDF of today’s schedule of events) be two-days long in case of inclement weather, like the 2010 Taste of Northfield?

Photo album: Taste of Northfield 2010, Day 2

The weather was spectacular for Day 2 of the Taste of Northfield. The NDDC organizers’ decision to host the Taste for two days instead of one this year was prescient, as Thursday’s threatening weather wiped out Day 1.

Waiting for their balloons Tim Freeland overcomes his fears Yum? Yeah, yum
The cookie-decorating, face-painting, and balloon-making activities were huge hits with kids young and old. For an amateur photographer like me, it’s like shooting fish in a barrel. These photos are three of my favorites.

See the album of 100 photos, the large slideshow, or this small slideshow:

Revised schedule of events: After the Storm, Taste of Northfield, Day 2

Taste of Northfield revised schedule Day 2

Here’s the revised “After the Storm” schedule of events for today’s Day 2 of Taste of Northfield 2010.

Storm sirens: deployed too quickly?

400px-Tornado_siren,_Pesotum_2 Last night’s storms by-passed Northfield once again. (The boys of KYMN joke that we’re protected by a high-pressure bubble whenever storms head our way.) When the sirens went off at about 5:30 pm, many people on Bridge Square for the Taste of Northfield headed for shelter in nearby stores or the Armory.

But just as many looked at the sky and could tell that nothing was imminent and just hung around and socialized. People like me. The tornado sirens ended after about 5 minutes, we got a few drops of rain, and that was it.

I don’t understand the decision-making process and the chain of command for when local sirens are deployed.  There’s no information about it on the City of Northfield’s emergency information page.

But it seems to me that the sirens too often are deployed too quickly, thereby teaching the public to not take them seriously because 99 times out of a hundred, nothing severe happens.

Or am I wrong?

Photo album: Taste of Northfield Day 1

Severe weather approaching downtown Northfield Day 1 of the Taste of Northfield was pretty much a bust due to the severe weather in the area. Good thing there’s going to be Day 2 tomorrow.

At around 5:30 pm, just as Robbie and I settled in the beer/wine tent with some ribs from the Quarterback, the storm sirens went off, triggering a mass exodus from Bridge Square. But even before that, the high winds and ominous clouds kept the crowd small, and many vendors had been packing up. Ross and Jessica were definitely grumpy.

Sunset over Hidden Valley Park The storms ultimately slid to our south and all we got was a light rain shower, with a spectacular sunset.

See the album of 13 photos, the large slideshow, or this small slideshow:

Taste of Northfield finally gets a domain name and its own web page, just in time for today

Taste of Northfield

I’ve nagged Ross for over a year to register a domain name and set up a webpage for the Taste of Northfield and he completely ignored me, hurting my feelings.

But last week, he got enough pressure from his task force that he finally caved and hired me to do what needed to be done.

tasteofnorthfield.org is now working and the page is up, complete with the two-day schedule of activities and performers, the list of vendors, the list of sponsors, and photo albums from previous events.

I’m pretty much over it now, Ross. No need to kiss and make up, however.

Sarah gets a taste of Ross with a Taste of Northfield

Video: Anna Balfany performs 4pm to 10 (The 2010 Taste of Northfield Song)

Anna BalfanyAnna Balfany and Jessica Paxton I took this video last week of Anna Balfany,  daughter of NDDC board member Anastasia Balfany, performing her new song, ‘4pm to 10,’ during Jessica Paxton’s All Wheel Drive show on KYMN 1080 AM. She’ll be performing it live on Bridge Square, tomorrow and Friday for the 2010 Taste of Northfield.

Anna wrote and performed a song called ‘The Taste’ for last year’s Taste of Northfield. See the video and lyrics: Continue reading Video: Anna Balfany performs 4pm to 10 (The 2010 Taste of Northfield Song)

Video and photo album: Bank raid re-enactment

I took video instead of photos of the bank raid re-enactment at last month’s Taste of Northfield. I discovered that the camera can take low-res photos of video frames so here’s a dozen. My favorite is the one showing gun fire. Who is that guy?

See the album, the large slideshow, or this small slideshow (the 7-minute video is below):


Photo album: Taste of Northfield 2009

Ross Currier and Ray Cox Ross Currier Sarah and Ross Currier
NDDC head honcho Ross Currier made sure his brother-in-law brought his magic umbrella downtown last night for the Taste of Northfield. The weather gods showed their pleasure with Ross, as did many of the women in attendance.

See the album of 60+ photos, the large slideshow, or this small slideshow:

The Taste of Northfield, rain or shine

beer/wine tent No, the beer/wine tent on the 4th St. bridge didn’t blow down this morning. But it could be an exciting day for the Taste of Northfield, as the forecast is 50-50. If it gets nasty, Ross has a contingency plan.

Photo redux: Taste of Northfield, ‘07 and ‘08

It’s Taste of Northfield this week on Thursday, June 18.

Here’s a look at the 2008 and 2007 events… and a new way to view photo albums.

Taste of Northfield, 2008

Taste of Northfield, 2007

Or you can view them the old way, too, here and here.

Video: Anna Balfany performs ‘The Taste’

Taste of Northfield Next Thursday, June 18, is the annual Taste of Northfield event in downtown Northfield. See the NDDC home page for details/large PDF poster.

Griff Wigley, Anna Balfany, Anna Balfany, NDDC board member Anastasia Balfany’s daughter, wrote a song for the event called ‘The Taste.’ She sang it yesterday on the upper deck of The Contented Cow.


The Taste
Music and lyrics by Anna Balfany, © Copyright 2009

Every food I’m tasting
Every line I’m waiting in
Searching vendor to vendor
Hogan Brothers ice cream makes me feel a whole lot better
Stop and grab a smoothie at James Gang
The world’s best desserts at Ole Café
Cheesy, gooey Domino’s pizza
If you’re hot, get an icy at Sweet Pea’s Loft

At Bridge Square it’s The Taste
We hope you’ll be there, I just can’t wait!
What would be a great downtown without the NDDC?
And what would be the Taste of Northfield without anything to eat?
What would be a summer without a hotdog at Tiny’s?
And doesn’t it just make your day when you see Maggie Lee?
It’s the Taste, it’ll be great
At Bridge Square, it’s The Taste

Make sure to stop at Rueb-n-Stein
Their burgers are amazing I’m sure you’ll find
And you just can’t miss the food at the Cow
I guarantee you’re gonna say – delicious!

At Bridge Square it’s The Taste
We hope you’ll be there, I just can’t wait!
What would be a great downtown without the NDDC?
And what would be the Taste of Northfield without anything to eat?
What would be a summer without a hotdog at Tiny’s?
And doesn’t it just make your day when you see Maggie Lee?
It’s The Taste, it’ll be great
At Bridge Square, it’s The Taste

Video: Taste of Northfield street dancing

A snippet of swing dancing and another of contra dancing at last week’s Taste of Northfield. Music by the Over and Back Band.

Click play to watch/listen. 3 minutes, 37 seconds

Video: Over and Back Band performing Orange Blossom Special at Taste of Northfield

The Over and Back Band played at last week’s Taste of Northfield (band members: Mike Hildebrandt, fiddle; Craig Wasner, keyboards; Gordon Oschwald, bass; Steve Jennings, drums).

I captured some snippets of their closing number: Orange Blossom Special.


Click play to watch/listen. 3 minutes, 14 seconds.

Photo album: Taste of Northfield 2007

taste08-sshotRoss with his NDDC hat on has blogged that the Third Annual Taste of Northfield is Coming Right Up.

That would be this Thursday night, downtown.

He has a 2008 Taste of Northfield (PDF) poster (left) with the details.

Doug Bratland over at Northfield.org’s blog says that the Third Annual Taste of Northfield Promises to be Bigger and Better than Ever!

Want to whet your appetite?

See the 2007 Taste of Northfield photo album (I blogged it last July 19) or this slideshow of 33 photos:

Roving cell of youth photographed downtown Northfield, sans heroin

IMG_3599_1000.jpg IMG_3664_1000.jpg IMG_3665_1000.jpg
On Thursday night during Taste of Northfield, I photographed a group of youth on Bridge Square actingly strangely. On Friday night during Pottermania on Division, I photographed many of the same youth, also acting strangely. Click photos to enlarge. The tell-tale red eyes on some of the youth in the center photo is proof enough for me that these are some of the kids we’ve been talking about.

Taste of Northfield photos

The NDDC pulled off a great event tonight on Bridge Square in downtown Northfield. Clear skies, 70 degrees, no wind, no mosquitos, huge crowd, local food, live music, live auction, two reenactments, and beer and wine served on public property.

Is this a great city or what.

See the Taste of Northfield 2007 photo album or this slideshow of 33 photos:

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