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They’re Trying to Make ‘Minneapolis South’ Happen

Plus budget surplus woes, Shakespeare canceled, and Fortress Target in today's Flyover

Meet ya for a beer in Minneapolis South?

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

“Minneapolis South” Is the New Old Thing You're Supposed to Call Eagan, Burnsville

Move over WeDo, East Town, CenHen, and NeHe: The suburbs are getting into the ill-conceived geographic branding game. Complicating matters? The fact "Minneapolis South" already exists… in south Minneapolis. Believe me, I grew up there. But that’s not stopping an apparent collaboration between tourism groups Experience Burnsville and Enjoy Eagan from trying to make Minneapolis South happen. In fact, billboards are reportedly popping up around the southern metro, proselytizing the innumerable virtues and draws of Minneapolis South. To hear the website tell it, the imaginary region stretches between those southern ‘burbs, and it boasts Vikings HQ (Twin Cities Orthopedics Performance Center and TCO Stadium), shopping (the 140-store Burnsville Center), outdoor recreation (Buck Hill), and free parking—all at a “much cheaper [cost] than downtown.” Prospective tourists are urged to Play! Stay! Save! (Punctuation theirs.) Some sort of vague football sweepstakes is teased on the homepage, yet the link apologizes for the absence of said sweepstakes. Look, we’re not clowning on the lovely, rapidly diversifying suburbs. We’re simply clowning on focus-grouped civic marketing efforts that produce names nobody will ever, ever say out loud with a straight face... unless they're talking about Minneapolis South. (Go Tigers.) We've reached out to Experience Burnsville and Enjoy Eagan for additional info.

Update: A spokesperson with Enjoy Eagan informed us that the Minneapolis South campaign ended years ago; the website went dark hours after we published this blog. Racket regrets the error, though, still, at one time this was an attempted thing.

What Are We Going To Do with Our Record Surplus? Nothing!

For now, at least. Unless the Minnesota House and Senate can agree to a special session, which is unlikely, the state's historic $12 billion surplus is going to sit in the bank until after the 2022 elections. Today, Peter Callaghan over at MinnPost details all the spending proposals that never came to fruition, including $2,000 “Walz checks,” increased public education funding, tax relief, and transit improvements. But none of those things could get enough support to make it through both houses, leaving us in a bipartisan standstill. That should make for some fun Q&A sessions and finger pointing on the campaign trail. They can, however, brag about what they did pass this session, which includes the “free the growler” bill (yay?) and hero checks (which have been criticized for leaving out some heroes).

Tamer Shrew, Please

Shakespeare’s The Taming of the Shrew, best known today as the source material for 10 Things I Hate About You, is a rollicking Elizabethan tale of an unruly woman beaten into cheerful submission by a charming Italian so some jerks can get with her sister. But it is Shakespeare, so theater troupes have sought ways for decade to make the comedy not just relevant but palatable to a modern, non-wife-battering audience. Director Lisa Wolpe had a provocative idea for the Great River Shakespeare Festival in Winona: gender-flip the leads so the shrew is a man, and then make the man to be tamed Black (and the abusive woman white). A high level of difficulty to pull that off, and, according to a statement from the festival's administrators, the production will not be happening. "The pressures of time, as well as the charged nature of the play's content, contributed to an atmosphere in the rehearsal room that was difficult, even impossible," says a statement from the festival. I bet some terrible people on the internet will have racist opinions about wokeness today.

Downtown Target to Address Its Letting Street-Level People Inside Problem

Wanna hear from a Target Corp. spokesperson, Minneapolis Downtown Council CEO Steve Cramer and a cop? We didn't either, but they're all included in this Biz Journal story about the Nicollet Mall Target's mission to make its atrium "less of a space where people can gather," writes Brianna Kelly. At issue, according to the spokesperson: "disruptive activity around our downtown Minneapolis store over the past few years," which has recently resulted in that location locking its revolving doors and shutting down its liquor store. It's unclear what the revamped entrance to the flagship store will look like when it's completed in late summer, though you can safely guess it'll be hostile to anyone who's not wearing a lanyard on their lunch break. Kelly reports that Target is actively working with MPD and other "stakeholders" (love stakeholders!) to help give our downtown a more militarized charm.

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