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Happy Freeway Reopening to the Electric Fetus
Cars! We sure do drive them places. Not on I-35W so much over the past four years, though, as a few miles of the interstate in Minneapolis have been under reconstruction. That’s why “Excitement Builds,” as a WCCO headline trumpeted, about the freeway’s full reopening this weekend. According to MNDOT, the work should be substantially complete “sometime Friday." (Don’t worry—plenty of south Minneapolis roadway is still unusable.) They built 11 bridges, installed new ramps on Lake Street (southbound) and 28th Street (northbound), poured 2.5 miles of new concrete, added E-Z Pass (MnPASS) lanes and a bus station, and improved pedestrian bridges. This is especially good news for the Electric Fetus, the longstanding record store that was all but marooned by the project. Drop a couple bucks there this weekend to celebrate. (Racket has not been paid for this endorsement.)
Somali Businesses Want Meters Gone
More cars! When we’re not driving them, we’re parking them. The Star Tribune reports that the latest clash in the ongoing struggle between business owners and parking meters is happening at Karmel Mall, the Somali shopping center and business hub on Lake Street in Minneapolis's Whittier neighborhood. According to the story, the Karmel Plaza Business Association and the mall's owner, Basim Sabri, think the nearby streets have been metered discriminatorily and are sponsoring a petition to have the parking meters removed.
Leave the Hmong Cultural Center Alone
Early yesterday a bunch of racist jerkoffs vandalized the Hmong Cultural Center Museum on University Avenue in St. Paul, whitewashing the museum’s new sign and stenciling white power logos over top. If you’d like to help out, you can make a donation to the Center here. And also, you should visit the museum!
$18K’ll Buy You a Lot of Facebook Ads
Seeing a lot of posts on your Facebook feed about the “inept city council” who wants to eliminate or defund the police and how important it is to protect Chief Arradondo’s job? Well, WedgeLIVE dove into the ad records of All of Mpls (the folks who sent you that mailer) and found that the group shelled out $18,639 on Facebook ads. For comparison, Jacob Frey’s actual campaign (as opposed to groups like All of Mpls that are basically shadow campaigns for him) has spent around $5,500 on ads and Yes 4 Minneapolis less than $4,000. Full disclosure: Racket spent $100 on our first Facebook ad yesterday (as an experiment) and we already got 79 clicks from it in less than 24 hours. We did this because Facebook destroyed the ad-based model that once sustained journalism and now extorts publications for exposure.
Knuth Knets Knotable Ekndorsemeknts
In other mayoral news, challenger Kate Knuth announced four big endorsements today. Minneapolis City Council President Lisa Bender, council members Steve Fletcher and Jeremy Schroeder, and Park Board Commissioner Brad Bourn are all lining up behind Knuth. Incidentally, Knuth has not bought any Facebook ads, from what I can tell.
Friends. How Many of Us Have Them?
Along with “What are the real borders of Uptown?” it’s the perennial question: “Is it hard to make friends in Minnesota?” Axios delved into the subject today and learned: Yes! Born and bred Minnesotans tend to make lifelong friends early, leaving transplants to strike friendships with other outsiders. The good news is, Axios readers who like to answer polls are looking for friends. For the record, three of Racket’s four staffers are Not From Here, but we are all very cool people and have lots of friends. (You don’t know them. They go to a different school.) We will be friends with you though, if you’re not a creep.