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Coastal Seafoods Swims Into New St. Paul Store Next Week

Plus fun new healthcare fees, e-sports are on the out, and a seed art shakeup in today's Flyover news roundup.

1:25 PM CST on December 14, 2023

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Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.

Coastal Seafoods Announces St. Paul Expansion

Much like that noble sea beast the shark, Coastal Seafoods never stops moving. In 2020, they relocated from their longtime south Minneapolis location into a much larger space across the street, where they introduced classes, a gourmet market, and a dine-in cafe—all that in addition to MN's largest dedicated seafood counter. Now, they've announced the expansion of their St. Paul shop, which opens early next week. The new location at 286 Snelling Ave. S. will have a market, a full restaurant (though that's not slated to open until early next year), and a classroom space. According to a press release today, you can also expect extended hours and a "formidable array" of new features, which include bigger cases and coolers, more gourmet goods of the not-fish variety, a live lobster tank, and a lounge area. The planned restaurant, Coastal Dive Bar & Oyster Palace, will seat 30 inside and boast a large outdoor patio—and unlike Minneapolis, it'll have a bar program, with beer, wine, and cocktails in a "dive bar" setting.

Introducing a Shitty New Service Fee From Allina

If a note from your healthcare company beginning with the phrase "dear valued patient…" strikes fear into your heart, good instinct! That's the salutation in an email from Allina Health, as shared by FOX9's Mary McGuire this morning, which goes on to explain that messaging your doctor on healthcare portals like MyChart will soon cost you $49—in many cases, more than an actual copay. "This is a standard industry practice," they write, and doesn't that just make you feel a whole lot better! Examples of things that could incur this new fee:

  • A new issue or symptom requiring a medical assessment or referral 
  • Medication adjustments 
  • Chronic disease check-ins 
  • Changes in a chronic condition 
  • Orders for labs or imaging 

How will you know for sure if you're being charged? Oh, ha ha, you won't. This is America. "Submitting a medical message using your Allina Health account means you agree to a possible charge for the message," the Minneapolis-based healthcare provider notes.

More Like... ZZZZ-sports

Minnesota's e-sports industry is crashing, writes Nick Williams for the Star Tribune. E-sports, if you're not familiar, are video game competitions where top-tier gamers and professional teams compete against one another. Their popularity skyrocketed when everyone was stuck at home during the pandemic, but the folks who invested early haven't found it to be a lucrative endeavor. The New York Times sounded the alarm on the industry over a year ago: "The Excitement Around E-Sports Is Growing. But Where Are the Profits?" According to Williams, MN-based companies like Bloomington-based Wisdom Gaming are pulling back on their e-sports teams, citing declining viewership since that pandemic peak and the disappearance of venture capital bucks. "It was just hard to keep that as a profitable part of what we're doing," president Andy Selness told the Strib. Maybe Taylor Swift needs to date a gamer?

Justice for Mustard!

In August, the reliably wonderful Jennifer Brooks at the Star Tribune penned a column on a State Fair shakeup that rocked the crop art community: 2023 would be the final year competitors could use yellow mustard seeds in their entries. ("This will go down in Minnesota State Fair history as the year crop art cut the mustard," Brooks wrote.) But Brooks has another scoop today—mustard seeds are back on the table! "Due to the Minnesota Crop Improvement Association labeling yellow mustard seed as a cover crop in Minnesota, the seed will be permitted for use in the competition," reads an update from the fair.

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