A Day in the Life of Biwabik

The Mesabi Iron Range city of Biwabik is making a bid for Minnesota Monthly’s “Best Minnesota Town” next month. Videographer Kim Sampson assembled this short film “A Day in the Life of Biwabik” for the occasion. Several Iron Range photographers contributed their work to the project. I think it’s a rich, sweet visual depiction of… Read More →

Iron Range Fourth of July 2017

It’s time for another Iron Range Fourth of July in Northern Minnesota. Regardless of economic or political winds, the region always unites for its uniquely exuberant observation of Independence Day, which lasts several days (up to a month) as celebrated in local custom. Below is MinnesotaBrown’s 2017 Iron Range Fourth of July listing for parades, fireworks displays and street… Read More →

New film explores 1916-17 Northern MN labor uprisings

Filmmaker Gary Kaunonen of KCC-TV in International Falls just released a new documentary about a pivotal time in Northern Minnesota’s labor history. It’s called “Northern Minnesota’s Labor Wars.” The years 1916 and 1917 brought major labor uprisings in the mines of the Mesabi Iron Range and the lumber camps of the state’s far northern pine… Read More →

Author to share novel about 1916 Mesabi strike at MDC

Author Megan Marsnik will read from her novel “Under Ground” and discuss its setting amid the Mesabi Range Strike of 1916 Thursday, Feb. 23, at 6 p.m. at the Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm. The Discovery Center currently features the exhibit “Enough! The 1916 Mesabi Range Strike.” This is an absolutely necessary viewing for anyone… Read More →

Paper shows PolyMet runoff could reach BWCA after all

While the proposed nonferrous Polymet mining project near Hoyt Lakes nears the end of its environmental review process, questions remain about the speed with which it could receive permits. One of the most fascinating developments I’ve seen recently is this Marshall Helmberger story in last week’s edition of the Tower Timberjay. According to a June 18,… Read More →

Laskiainen Finnish Sliding Festival in Palo this weekend

This is an older post about Laskiainen. Click here for the 2016 information. This weekend, Feb. 7-8, the 78th Annual Laskiainen Finnish Sliding Festival will be held near the Loon Lake Community Center in downtown Palo, Minnesota. This annual Iron Range winter tradition originated with Finnish immigrants who settled places like Palo after they were… Read More →

‘A hundred years went by’

Last week the leaves popped and it became summer on the Iron Range. Once again we fly the colors of our flag — birch green, sky blue and iron ore red. Our haunted northern Minnesota spring, which revealed all that the snow had covered, dissolves into a comfortable summer — the woods obscured by woods,… Read More →

Iron Range native wins Pulitzer for cartoons

An Iron Range native just won a Pulitzer Prize. Though I never knew that Kevin Siers, a political cartoonist for the Charlotte (N.C.) Observer, was from Biwabik, the Duluth News Tribune‘s Mike Creger apparently did. He filed a fascinating feature on Siers and the Pulitzer Prize for cartooning he won Monday. In his 20s, while doing… Read More →

Golf Channel profiles Iron Range golf courses

The Golf Channel’s Brandon Tucker recently profiled the Mesabi Iron Range and took a closer look at the two big golf courses at Giants Ridge near Biwabik. It’s a mostly-positive review of the Legend and the Quarry golf courses. The signature hole of the entire property — and arguably the entire state — comes courtesy… Read More →

Bikes, deer and rock ‘n’ roll; let’s do this week right

We begin the week with some Iron Range stories that you might have missed if, like me, you’ve spent the last couple weeks trying to find a historical precedent for what’s going on in America (hint: noooooooo!) The annual Great River Energy Mesabi Trail Tour is next weekend. The ride spans from Chisholm to Grand… Read More →