Great Northern Radio Show: Adding value to Northern MN

Like many local mines, Iron Range-based MinnesotaBrown.com will be entering a partial slowdown, or “hot idle” while we work out a little problem with the media commodities market. See, the price of a MinnesotaBrown blog post is down to a historically low $1.45 per long ton, due in part to limited demand and illegal imports… Read More →

Rez comedians heal, hearten with laughs

“When people hear the words ‘Indian Reservation,’ they think of alcoholism, drugs, addiction, abuse and suicide,” levels Jon Roberts, a comedian from Red Lake. “We want to send a message that those shouldn’t be the only words you think of when you see us. Laughter is what brings communities together. That is the reason we… Read More →

The woods and us

I smile to see the midnight fireflies from my darkened bedroom in the woods. The fireflies of my youth in the Sax-Zim Bog twinkled like stars. We see fewer today, but still enough to inspire wonder. Suddenly my smile drained away. What if my boys remember a few fireflies when there are none? We read… Read More →

Chief Bemidji statue to be dedicated June 6

For many, the history of Northern Minnesota is wrapped up in the fictional story of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox, adorable figures found on display in towns like Brainerd or Bemidji. But in Bemidji, a remarkable cultural reclamation is taking place. A statue of the Ojibwa leader Shaynowishkung, often known as Chief Bemidji, the… Read More →

KAXE/KBXE music event will spin you right round in Bemidji

This Saturday in Bemidji, Northern Community Radio will host its first-ever vinyl and CD music sale fundraiser in honor of National Record Store Day. This independent northern Minnesota public radio organization has been collecting donated LPs and CDs for the past month to sell as part of this live music event Brigid’s Pub in downtown Bemidji starting noon… Read More →

Saturday’s Bemijigamaag Powwow in Bemidji welcomes all

The city of Bemidji, the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwa, Red Lake Band of Ojibwa and White Earth Ojibwa Nation, along with Northern Community Radio, KOJB-The Eagle and a host of sponsors, will join to host the Bemijigamaag Powwow this Saturday, April 4, at Bemidji’s Sanford Center. The event is free and open to all…. Read More →

Poetry in motion: KAXE/KBXE to host third annual Beat Cafe

Every weekday morning, my local public radio station shares a poem recorded by a Minnesota poet in a program called “The Beat.” I must admit, I run hot and cold on these poetry segments. I’ve heard poems that have shook me to my core, but most poems bother me. They irritate. Aggravate. Infuriate. Provoke scorn… Read More →

These fancy tent people seem to be getting attention

A classically brisk Northern Minnesota winter finally set in this week. After an abnormally warm December, I might have been among a minority glad to feel the sharp chill of extreme cold when I walked out the door last night. Then again, easy for me to say; I don’t live in a tent. Minnesota Public… Read More →

Northern journalists taunt each other with lutefisk

The “Great Northern” states extend from the Dakotas through Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan and are marked by the strong and enduring influence of Scandinavian immigrants. In addition to being the genetic forebears of many people who live here, these Scandinavians (Norwegians and Swedes, in particular) brought and kept many traditions that have lasted to this… Read More →

Local, weird, darkly funny: ‘The One Who Watches’

A new short film, “The One Who Watches,” by Duluth filmmakers Nicholas Sunsdahl and Molly Josefson, made the following impressions on me, in this order: 1) the mix of Bemidji, Iron Range and Twin Ports settings and characters, 2) the abject film school weirdness, and 3) the dark, persistent humor, punctuated by one scene that made me laugh… Read More →