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In The Heart of the Beast Theatre Update

In The Heart of the Beast Theatre Update

BOARD UPDATE AUGUST 12 2021In 2021, HOBT has been working to restart our organization and adapt to the impacts of COVID-19. We considered every path forward that would put us in the best possible position to live out our mission and carry the important work of the MayDay Council into the future.In conversation and with the input of HOBT staff and the MayDay Council, the HOBT Board of Directors has voted to sell the Avalon Theatre, our home since 1988.It’s time to find a new, smaller home that will allow us to live into our vision of a decentralized MayDay. That includes moving into a new space that is more sustainable and accessible.HOBT is also in the process of moving out of our puppet storage warehouse, which was rented to store the thousands of puppets in HOBT’s collection.The puppets will return to the artists that created them, museums who can house them (both locally and nationally), and HOBT will be maintaining a smaller collection to carry our work into the future.We have come to these decisions out of a fierce commitment to the power of puppet and mask performance to create new ways forward together with our beloved community.We give abundant gratitude for all the brilliant work done over the past 48 years: the many artists, staff, board members, and volunteers who have given their whole hearts to the work of HOBT. Thank you!As we sell the building and move out of puppet storage, we are turning the page on this chapter of our organization.With hope, we are embarking on a new journey: finding a new space, creating new decentralized MayDay experiences, and choosing a new name for our puppet and mask theater.For more information and to read our full announcement, go here: https://hobt.org/the-avalon/ The Avalon Theatre at 1500 E Lake Street has been home to In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre since 1988.

East Phillips Urban Farm Faces Crucial City Council Vote in August

East Phillips Urban Farm Faces Crucial City Council Vote in August

By LINDSEY FENNER The future of the East Phillips Urban Farm will reach a crucial turning point in August when the Minneapolis City Council will hear a staff report on the future of the City’s Public Works expansion at the Roof Depot site at Longfellow and 28th Street, and vote on an Environmental Assessment Worksheet (EAW). An EAW is a short document that reports on the facts of a project and determines the need for a further review called an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS). At the end of April, the City Council approved a staff directive that paused the City’s Public Works expansion at the Roof Depot site, with a required report at the City Council Committee of the Whole meeting on Thursday, August 5. The report will include information on the financial and operational impact of ending the Public Works expansion project and recommendations for selling the property to community groups.The Public Works expansion, if it went forward, would increase car and truck emissions in a neighborhood already overburdened with pollution and accompanying health conditions like asthma. Neighbors, community members, and allies have been fighting for another vision of the Roof Depot site, the East Phillips Urban Farm. The community project would include urban agriculture, affordable housing, job training, and a small business incubator. The community group organized around this vision, the East Phillips Neighborhood Institute, has an active lawsuit against the City of Minneapolis to stop the Public Works expansion, is working on securing funding and a buyer for the property, and has been holding workshops with business owners, community groups, and tenants interested in renting space within the 230,000 sq.ft. Roof Depot. The East Phillips Neighborhood Institute (EPNI) hosted a workshop with local businesses and community organizations such as Migizi, Gandhi Mahal, Little Earth, and more to envision a business model for the future East Phillips Indoor [...]

Red Lake and NACC Set to Open New Healthcare Center

Red Lake and NACC Set to Open New Healthcare Center

By TINA MONJE In September of 2020, Red Lake Nation and their affordable housing nonprofit partner, CommonBond Communities, began taking applications for their new Native-centered apartment building, Mino Bimaadiziwin. Today, most of the units are occupied, and they hope to have the building full by late August. In partnership with Native American Community Clinic (NACC), Red Lake Nation is also gearing up to open the Mino Bimaadiziwin Wellness Center, an onsite health clinic. Dr. Laurelle Myhra, PhD, LMFT, is an enrolled member of Red Lake Nation, and the new clinic’s director. According to Myhra, this project, arguably the first of its kind in the nation, has been made possible by the innovative Indigenous leaders who are seated at the planning table. The culmination of “a lot of indigenous people carrying indigenous knowledge and ancestry,” she says, has resulted in this new, one-of-a-kind avenue, through which residents may access housing and healthcare.This project comes after years of increasing houselessness within the community, and years of community organizing and development among Minnesota tribal leaders, Indigenous outreach workers, and community members at large. Construction began in the fall of 2019, and moved rapidly through the winter, on a site familiar to the population for whom this development is built to serve. At this site, in December of 2018, Simpson Housing opened the Navigation Center. By the guidance of local Native leadership groups, including Red Lake Nation, American Indian Community Development Center (AICDC) and Metropolitan Urban Indian Directors (MUID), this temporary shelter was built in response to the Franklin/Hiawatha encampment, known as the Wall of Forgotten Natives, which quickly grew through the spring and summer of 2018.The short-lived shelter provided 24/7, low-barrier entrance, where staff helped residents find permanent housing, and access to social services and health care. Many social [...]

Free Meals and Snacks for Kids

Free Meals and Snacks for Kids

En la escuela y en otros sitios Comidas escolares nutritivas gratuitas/Iskuulada iyo meelo kaleba  For more free meals for kids, download the “Free Meals for Kids” app on your smartphone!  East Phillips Park Cultural and Community Center 2307 17th Ave S  •Tuesdays and Thursdays, June 15-August 12 •Meal Bags will be provided from 5:00 PM- 6:00 PM  Little Earth Residents Association (LERA) 2495 18th Avenue South  •Tuesdays and Fridays, July 2-August 13 •Meal bags will be provided from 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM  Stewart Park 2700 12th Ave S  • This summer food services program provides children nutritious meals during summer vacation (Monday through Friday) on behalf of the Minneapolis School District. It is free to all children aged 18 and younger.  • Monday – Friday, 1-2PM: snack; 5-6PM: dinner  Weekly Meal Boxes Minneapolis Public Schools South High3131 S 19th Ave, 55407 Door 20, Off of 21st Ave South •Food boxes will contain 7 breakfasts and 7 lunches. Monday- Friday, 10am - 3pm Street Eats Food Truck, Minneapolis Public Schools •Hope Academy, 2300 Chicago Ave S: Wednesdays, 12PM-12:30PM •Waite House, 2323 11th Ave: Fridays, 11:40AM-12:10PM Franklin Library 1314 E Franklin Ave •Youth snacks:Thursdays 2:30-3:30 p.m. Hosmer Library 347 E 36th St •Snacks for kids always available during open hours •Cold Boxed Lunch: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday: 10:50-11:10AM •Hot Lunch: Wednesday 1:20-1:40 FREE MEALS FOR KIDS aplicación móvil/mobile app Free Nutritious Meals For Kids 18 And Under Only a click away, the Free Meals for Kids mobile app will help families and kids find free meals at schools and other sites across Minnesota during COVID-19. How it works: 1. Download the Free Meals for Kids app to your cell phone. 2. Use the app to find the nearest [...]

Reflections From a Former COVID-19 Case Investigator

Reflections From a Former COVID-19 Case Investigator

By LINDSEY FENNER  After over a year working in public health as a pandemic responder, I am back doing my pre-pandemic work. And although this doesn’t mean the pandemic is over, it does mean this column is at an end. I started writing it because I wanted people to have something to hold onto within the swirl of pandemic uncertainty and anxiety. I realized very quickly that no matter what my job description was on paper, what I was really doing was struggling with people through uncertainty. My job was to listen, to talk through complicated realities that didn’t fit neatly into a box, to help people who were sick make decisions when there wasn’t a clear correct choice. And now, after my job is over, what is there to say about what we have all been through together?  We are all connected. Which is nothing new, but doing this work meant relearning that every single day. In my role doing case investigation/epidemiology we called people one by one, asking them questions about their individual actions. But in every individual conversation, we were really teasing out all of these threads of connection. How one thing led to another, led to this particular person I was talking to on the phone being infected. This is after all how infectious diseases work, and why this work is done by “public” health and not your personal healthcare provider.  And each individual conversation was so important, especially at the beginning when there was so much we didn’t know. Each person had a story. And these stories, as lived experiences, all matter. And parts of that story became data points on a graph. This shouldn’t be seen as something purely reductive or dehumanizing. These data points, made up of stories, collectively helped tell the policy makers what to do next.  We could have done better. Sometimes the wrong decision was made by people in power. Sometimes there was no good choice: no clear scientific [...]

Minnesota Indian Women’s Resource Center Mural Unveiling

Minnesota Indian Women’s Resource Center Mural Unveiling

The Minnesota Indian Women's Resource Center at 2300 15th Ave S unveiled their new mural on May 14. The mural was designed and created by Holly Henning-Garcia (Miskitoos), Lina Downwind-Jubera (Migzi Ikwe), Charlie Garcia, Thomasina Topbear, and Miskwa Mukwa Desjarlait. Photo by Laura Hulscher

People and Pets Together

People and Pets Together

By DWIGHT HOBBES MPRnews.org Probably most people’s well being is intrinsically, inextricably tied to caring for a pet. The furry, four-footed friend you take care of who actually takes care of you. And who you need to feed. Tougher and tougher as financial times have grown, more than a few folk struggle to put food on the table, let alone fill a feed bowl.     Enter, People and Pets Together (PPT) (www.peopleandpetstogether.org) to meet that vital need. As the corona crisis continues to rage, it’s increasingly about more than having a cute critter on hand. That critter, for a lot of us, means company. For those who’ve had Fido or Kitty awhile, it is the loving companionship of a family member. Ultimately, we’re talking about the overall good. As Dr. Marie Louderback of the 3 Pound Cats clinic, fondly referred to at PPT as Dr. Marie, notes, “To be able to care for pet allows me to indirectly care for the family as well.” She adds, “The human-animal bond is...helpful with many human conditions.”     That particularly includes people who live alone, especially during a pandemic that the medical profession expects to last until December. Characteristic of isolation is succumbing to depression and just plain loneliness. “A pet can remind you that you're not alone,” says life coach Desiree Wiercyski at WebMD. "Pets offer unconditional love, which can be extraordinarily soothing when feeling isolated."     This past year PPT, one of the only two pet food shelves in all of Minnesota (the other being Pet Resource Center, 1401 N 44th Ave, Minneapolis) gave out 96,097 pounds of dog and cat food on-site. While the available stock shifts, you can generally find brand names like Loyal, Pro Plan and Nutro (dogs) and Friskies, 9-Lives and Purina (cats). A constant is that it will be quality food, enough to last a month. Upwards of 1,000 households were [...]

A Closer Look at the Deep Winter Greenhouse going up on 15th Ave.

A Closer Look at the Deep Winter Greenhouse going up on 15th Ave.

By ELIZA SCHOLL, HECUA INTERN WITH TAMALES Y BICICLETAS A mild late fall/early winter allowed Jacqueline Zepeda (Pine and Poplar LLC, https://pineandpoplar.org/ @femmeempowermentproject) and Scheidel (Fireweed Community Woodshop https://www.fireweedwoodshop.org/) to continue work on the ridgebeam. Photo: Jose Luis Villaseñor April: Villaseñor and volunteers Bozena Scheidel and Mattie Wong affix polycarbonate to the south face of the greenhouse. Volunteers have been essential to the building of the greenhouse, exchanging their time for new skills and community. Photo by volunteer Jessie Merriam  On South 15th Avenue, half a block south of E. 28th St., Tamales y Bicicletas is building a winter greenhouse on its urban garden space. For ten years, the nonprofit has used bikes and urban farming to reduce the environmental impacts of the heavy concentration of industry on the East Phillips community.  “How do we decolonize our food systems that then leads to decolonizing our minds and bodies?” asks Jose Luis Villaseñor Rangel, the founder of Tamales y Bicicletas. “That’s always been the DNA of why we do what we do.”  The construction of a winter greenhouse is Tamales y Bicicletas’ latest project. Daniel Handeen, a professor of architecture and a Research Fellow at the Center for Sustainable Building Research at the University of Minnesota who designed this greenhouse model, was looking for a way to grow crops through the winter with minimal additional heating inputs. The goal was to generate as little carbon dioxide output as possible. Handeen’s design is being constructed by Tamales y Bicicletas and by Appetite for Change on Minneapolis’ north side.  Handeen and Villaseñor affix glazing. The flexible plastic is double walled and will let sun in without letting as much heat out as traditional greenhouse plastics. Photos: Jessie Merriam “The project came [...]

CHANGEMAKERS

CHANGEMAKERS

Magdalena Kaluza: Direct Action By GAEA DILL-D’ASCOLI Reprinted with permission from Minnesota Women's Press "By sharing vulnerability, we build deeper relationships. We need deep relationships to face what’s coming — floods, heat waves, climate refugees.” Magdalena Kaluza (photo courtesy of Magdalena Kaluza) The story of Magdalena Kaluza starts with their parents. Their mother is a white American woman of Polish and French-Canadian descent with family ties in the Iron Range, who went to Guatemala to study Spanish. Their father is of Mayan K’iche’ mixed race (mestizo) who played the guitar and grew up in the midst of the revolution. Both parents were working towards social justice and solidarity before Kaluza was born. Kaluza’s day job is working at Take Action Minnesota, which allows them to deepen community ties through storytelling while engaging in social justice work. In 2019, Kaluza applied to Power of Vision, an arts organization based out of Hope Community in Minneapolis. It enabled Kaluza to listen to and tell the stories of the Phillips neighborhood, as well as support tenants in the Corcoran neighborhood. At the same time, Kaluza was supporting tenants in the Whittier neighborhood as they fought to claim their buildings from a landlord who charged high rents without maintaining the buildings. After a long legal fight, the tenants won the right to own their buildings in the summer of 2020. Kaluza worked with the tenants group named Cielos sin Limites (Sky Without Limits) to create a mural that celebrates the struggle and victory of the tenants. During the uprising in late May and early June, Kaluza focused on connecting community: organizing fire brigades, setting up lines of communication to keep community abreast of minute-by-minute changes, and starting the process of political education. As the situation calmed in the Twin Cities, Kaluza continued the long-term work of education, [...]

Let’s Get This Garden Started!

Let’s Get This Garden Started!

By MARY ELLEN KALUZA Dreaming of spring and summer... (illustrations by Jessie Merriam, photos by Mary Ellen Kaluza of her garden) March in Minnesota. The days are noticeably longer. We are longing to have dirt under our nails. But isn't it too early? There's still snow on the ground. It's the perfect time to get the garden started. First: Plan your garden Know your space—how much sun do you get in the different areas? Put your parka on and go outside. Imagine the trees are fully leafed-out and the sun moving high across the sky. Most vegetables need a lot of sun. Leafy greens can do well in more shaded areas and may actually produce larger leaves valiantly trying to absorb as much sunlight as possible. Save the sunniest areas for tomatoes, peppers, and other fruiting plants. Carrots and other root vegetables will tolerate some shade. Make your wish list, then pare it down to fit your space. Map out your garden with sun and plant size in mind. Buy your seeds! Thinking about how the light will be when the leaves come out and the sun is in it's summer trajectory helps know where to put certain plants. Preparing your soil and planning climbing plants, root crops, and herbs saves headaches down the road! Second: Start your seeds Starting plants from seed is a great way to save money. Seeds will stay viable for a few years and store easily in a glass jar in the fridge. You can get dozens of plants out of a $2 - $3 packet.  A lot of vegetables can be seeded directly into the soil. Read the seed packets for planting times and instructions. In short growing seasons, like Minnesota, many plants must be started inside a month or two before they can go outside. Save clear plastic clamshell packaging from lettuce or berries to start your seeds.You can control the moisture and warmth with the lid. Save other plastic tubs – yogurt, sour cream, anything you can punch drain holes into for transplanting the little starts into later [...]

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