‘Blue-Collar Battleground’ opens at Chisholm museum

Job creation. Job training. Worker shortage. Part time work. Stagnant wages. Higher productivity. Health care. Retirement savings. These words filter through our news like water down a pipe, presenting clear evidence that the “labor history” of America is hardly finished. Rather, we’re living in the continuation of an unresolved labor movement. This Thursday, Dec. 7,… Read More →

Young Range professionals seek to ‘Be the Change’

The Iron Range young professionals organization ReGen will launch a month of “Be the Change” events in October. The kickoff is Thursday, Oct. 5 at the Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm. That program features the Theater of Public Policy, a comedy act that blends good natured local and Minnesota political humor. Here’s how ReGen describes… Read More →

Moving mountains for an Iron Range future

Soon the Hull Rust Mine View in historic North Hibbing will be closed for good, set to reopen next year at a new location to the east. Shortly thereafter Hibbing Taconite will blow to bits the very mountain of taconite on which the viewing stand sits to send the iron ore on its way to… Read More →

No place like our place

Regular readers know that I push for economic diversification and independence on the Mesabi Iron Range. For too long we on the Mesabi have allowed our lives to be defined by outside forces. The most obvious external influences are mining companies. They’re the reason our towns exist but also the reason we live in a… Read More →

Nourishing new roots on the Iron Range

I found myself pacing through an Iron Range cemetery the other day, looking for a particular stiff. On my grim patrol I realized that the graveyard was laid out according to national origin. Eastern Europeans and Italians, Swedes and Norwegians, Germans and Irish could all be found in separate sections, at least until the 1940s… Read More →

Survey to spur high speed internet across Iron Range

I have fiber optic internet service direct to my home in rural Itasca County. Why? Enough of my neighbors filled out a survey and kept pressure on local leaders to get our area added to broadband expansion projects by Paul Bunyan Communication. Residents of the east central Iron Range will now have the same opportunity…. Read More →

Iron Range hope more vital than nostalgia

On the Mesabi Iron Range, our society rests upon the achievements of this region’s fading youth. We speak of our ancestors’ hungry demand for better working conditions and pay. We memorialize their desire to build schools and small towns to elevate humans from the morass. Yes, we call this history and print it on our… Read More →

Reina del Cid headlines July 6 concert in Chisholm

The Minnesota Discovery Center summer concert series continues Thursday, July 6, at 6 p.m. with Minneapolis-based singer/songwriter Reina del Cid and her band. This is one of my favorite Minnesota music acts. They’ve been on my Great Northern Radio Show twice, always a hit with the audience. Reina del Cid sings with a light, playful… 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 →

The Pines to play MN Discovery Center June 22

As I wrote earlier this year, I was excited to see the Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm schedule a summer concert series featuring several excellent Minnesota bands. The series opens Thursday, June 22 with The Pines. The fantastic Keith Secola will also play. The show starts at 6 p.m. Tickets are $9 for adults and… Read More →