NEWS & VIEWS OF PHILLIPS SINCE 1976
Tuesday December 12th 2017

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An accident raises questions

BY A TRAVELER

A traveler, passing Pioneers and Soldiers Cemetery late Thursday afternoon, September 21st 2017, missed the anguish of those whose car crashed into the Fence but soon enough to see the resulting toppled stone column, two “wrinkled” sections of recently restored wrought iron fence, and a tree cut off at its base from damage; had many images and words flash come to mind:

Like the words, often taken out of context, from Robert Frost’s poem “Mending Wall”, wherein one neighbor says, ‘Good fences make good neighbors.’ To which his neighbor responds, “Spring is the mischief in me, and I wonder If I could put a notion in his head: Why do they make good neighbors?  Isn’t it Where there are cows?  But here there are no cows. Before I built a wall I’d ask to know What I was walling in or walling out, And to whom I was like to give offense.’”

Or the old adage: Q. Why do they build a fence around a graveyard? A. Because people are just dying to get in.

The accident is no joking matter and the toppled column will likely be the first to be rebuilt as will all of the others during a subsequent Column Restoration Program currently undergoing fundraising.  Think about helping.  Send you contribution to Friends of the Cemetery Post Office Box 7345 Mpls., MN 55407

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EPIC Report-October 2017

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Midtown Phillips Neighborhood Association News-October 2017

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October 2017 Ventura Village

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“What goes up must come down.” …Isaac Newton: BARRICADES UP, BARRICADES DOWN

To Barricade or not to Barricade

We now have the answer

BY CAROL PASS

In spite of overwhelming Neighborhood, Police and City support for removing the Barricades between Bloomington Ave. and 16th Ave. S. on E 25th St., a third community meeting on the question was called on Aug. 30. A community vote was finally taken and the outcome was nearly unanimous.

The long and the short of the decision is that in mid-September, probably before this issue of the Alley comes out, the city will take down the barricades, ending the decade- long experiment. This will be coordinated with fall street sweeping to clean up the area. In addition, if all goes according to the community’s stated desires, E. 25th St. will be made a West bound one-way between 16th Avenue So. and Bloomington Ave. with no parking on the North side of the block and Permit Only Parking temporary Traffic Circle was decided upon for the intersection of E. 25th St. and 17th Ave. S. to slow traffic. The temporary Traffice Circle was installed Sept.20th. The Super America store on Bloomington Av. at 25th St. will try to coordinate a one-way traffic flow through its station to accommodate the one way on E. 25th St.

EPIC and the community will attempt to raise the $10,000 dollars to make the traffic circle permanent. Donations for this purpose will be sought and appreciated. Checks may be made payable to EPIC with “Traffic Circle” in the memo line and sent to EPIC, 2536 18thAve. S., Mpls., MN 55404.

The community hopes that these changes will help alleviate the drug and prostitution scene currently ensconced there and that neighbors will once again be able to walk to and from the store safely.

Carol Pass is a Phillips resident and President of East Phillips Improvement Coalition

A Traffic Circle at East 25th St. and 17th Av. agreed upon by neighbors, City of Mpls. and Mpls. continuing efforts starting 10 years ago to affect change in illicit drug & human trafficking. A temporary version of the island and signage has been installed as l. looking eastward and r. looking westward on East 25th St.

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2015 Paris Climate Accord: Carbon Neutrality by 2050: Local congregation signs on as U.S. signs off!

Mount Olive Lutheran Church at 31st and Chicago that is broadly known for its excellence in congregational life, worship spanning Lutheran tradition and innovation, liturgical
richness, musical superiority by voice, instrument and specially organ masters,
outstanding youth work; now bursts forth in environmental concern and commitment
fulfilling the mission of their faith. Photo credit: Mt. Olive website

BY FRANCES STEVENSON

Mount Olive Lutheran Church has been taking big steps towards carbon neutrality this fall installing a geothermal heating and cooling system under their parking lot on the corner of Chicago Avenue and E 31st street.

The church has been working towards the Paris Agreement goal of carbon neutrality by 2050 despite the United States decision to pull out of the agreement.

The installation of the geothermal system is planned to be finished by the end of October and the lot where the geothermal wells, 48 wells in total, are dug will be paved over as a parking lot as it was before the installation. The goal is to heat both buildings part of Mount Olive Lutheran church, the chapel building and administrative building, without changing either building all too much.

“We really wanted to keep the building the way it was,” Property Director Arthur Halbardier said. “It essentially has not been changed since 1929 when it was built. What we did do was move all the radiators from the old heating system and they’ll be replaced by grates in the floor.”

The geothermal system will have a large up-front cost, the church budgeting an extra $300,000 in their 2017 budget, but system will pay for itself in approximately 20 years in reduced heating and cooling costs. Halbardier said the system is already paying for itself in environmental conscience.

“The congregation unanimously felt that it was the right thing to do,” Halbardier said. “The cheaper route [to modernizing the heating and cooling system] would have still had us using a lot of fossil fuels and a lot of electricity. The congregation is very supportive of this. I haven’t had anyone complaining about not being able to use half their building.”

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Tai Chi Starting November 11 at Ebenezer Tower

Phillips Wellness 50+ invites you to participate in Tai Chi sessions with master trainer, Richard Johnson, starting November 11 at Ebenezer Tower. The sessions are geared to people of all abilities, and everyone is welcome.

Tai Chi, an ancient Chinese tradition, is a form of exercise that uses slow, deliberate movements. Rather than using muscle tension, Tai Chi focuses on coordination, relaxation and deep breathing. With its gentle stretching and low impact, it has become a sought after technique for older people to maintain good health. It can be practiced any time, anywhere and by anyone. No equipment or special space is needed.

Benefits of Tai Chi may include:

  • Improved heart function
  • Increased energy and stamina
  • Improved stress management
  • Improved muscle strength
  • Mental calm and clarity
  • Better balance and flexibility to prevent falls

Join us for six Tai Chi sessions: Tuesdays from 5:30 to 6:30 PM from November 11 through December 12 at Ebenezer Tower, 2523 Portland Ave. S., Minneapolis, MN 55404.

These sessions are open to the public but non-Ebenezer residents please contact Donna Nordin at 612-741-5180 or dnordin2@comcast.net to let us know you are coming.

Our leader is Richard Johnson, a Tai Chi master with experience working with people at all levels of fitness. Richard also teaches Tai Chi in churches, health clubs and at Lifetime Fitness.

Phillips Wellness 50+ is an initiative to increase health and well-being, by and for people in the Phillips neighborhood.

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What is your Story? Tell it now! PHOENIX OF PHILLIPS Fall 2017 Issue

“Healing–of body, mind, spirit,
community”

DEADLINE EXTENDED

  • The ability to tell one’s own story is at the core of healing. 
  • To be able to articulate one’s truth and to experience being heard by others are powerful tools to overcoming shame, isolation and fear. 
  • What is your story of healing? 
  • The Phoenix of Phillips literary magazine wants to hear from you! 
  • This fall’s theme is “Healing”—healing of body, mind, spirit, community. 
  • We publish writers of all levels who live or work or volunteer in Phillips. 
  • We have extended the deadline for submissions to October 31. 
  • Send your writing to: semillacenter@gmail.com or mail it to: 2742 15th Ave S.  Minneapolis, MN 55407
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The Power of Art

Psalm 34:11,12,13 precedes the new mosaic verse on the south wall of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church above the Peace Garden and along 28th Street.
V11   Children, come and listen to me.
  I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
v12   Which one of you finds pleasure in life?
  Who wants time to see good (things)?
v13   Do not say anything evil,
  or let your lips tell anything that is false.
v14  Turn away from evil and do good (things).
  Seek peace and pursue it.
Photo Credit: Talia Hansel

“Cave Dweller” forms take shape to become a new sculpture at Peace Garden. Photo Credit: Patrick Cabello Hansel

BY PATRICK HANSEL

Challenge of sanity

It seems that our community is always under assault, doesn’t it sometimes? From the exploding heroin epidemic to the President’s ending of DACA, there is always some threat needing a response.  How do we keep our sanity in such times?   

One Way

One way is through art—whether it’s painting a mural, decorating a cake for a quinceañera, writing a poem or a story, making mosaics or puppets or sculpture—working together to create art can transform the neighborhood while it is transforming the lives of those who make it and those who experience it.

The Taste of Phillips

The Semilla Center for Healing and the Arts @ St. Paul’s Lutheran is celebrating the incredible art of the Phillips community at The Taste of Phillips on October 28, from 4 to 9 pm.  Local artists will display their work, and there will be so much more.  Hands on art projects for all ages, a scavenger hunt for children, a photography show by youth of the community, silent auction and food. The musical lineup includes

Peter VanKoughnett and others from East Phillips (part of Bolt Weevils)

• Ballet Folklorico Mexico Azteca

• Katherine Parent and Adam Gabriel Rangel—Spoken word and songs of resistance

• Los Chinelos Read the rest of this entry »

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Making the East Phillips neighborhood safer for all to walk and bike

By Soren Jensen, Midtown Greenway Coalition

In 2016, the Midtown Greenway Coalition helped conduct a study to identify barriers to use of the Greenway by the community. They found that many people of color do not use, feel welcome on or know about the Greenway, especially along the trench where 29th Street is located. This is a concern for a neighborhood where nearly 50% speak a language other than English at home and residents are in the bottom bracket of life expectancies (between 70 and 75 years of age).

On Saturday, Sept. 23, the Coalition hosted a block party on East 29th Street between Bloomington Avenue and 16th Avenue to demonstrate how a shared street approach can make East 29th Street better and safer. With the help of funding from the Center for Prevention at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, the Coalition has temporarily transformed 29th Street through a shared street project that prioritizes pedestrians and bicyclists while also allowing motor vehicles at slower speeds. The demonstration will remain in place through the middle of October.

In addition to talking with the Coalition about what they would like to see on East 29th Street and how it could be improved for biking and walking, the approximately 300 people who attended the party enjoyed table tennis, basketball, chess, flower plantings, chalk art and free servings of Loulou Sweet & Savory Thai-rolled ice cream. The event ended with an Eat for Equity dinner on the street, featuring food that reflected the cultures in the Phillips neighborhood.

Community engagement included making signs with attendees’ wishes for the street on them, as well as surveys and voting for improvements by placing stickers on large posters. Those who missed the party but wish to weigh in may do so by calling 311 or taking the Coalition’s online survey to share their thoughts about how to make the street safer for walking and biking, as well as better connected to the Midtown Greenway. The link to the survey is available on the home page of www.midtowngreenway.org.

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