May 2013 Archives

Dakota people consider Minnesota their birthplace. But the U.S./Dakota War of 1862 and the exile of Dakota from their homeland and culture has put the native language on the verge of extinction. About 12 years ago, a group of women gathered around a kitchen table in Morton, Minnesota, to discuss the task at hand: saving Dakota culture. They formed Dakota Wicohan, which means “Dakota way of life.” Today, they teach young people and families their native language to preserve their heritage.

Digital media technology is changing how we access information. The Digital Public Library of America recently launched, and is providing users with access to a wealth of resources that go well beyond Google and Wikipedia. It provides researchers with access to 150 of Minnesota’s museums, cultural organizations and libraries.

F. Scott Fitzgerald was born in St. Paul in 1896, and lived at multiple addresses near Summit Avenue during his time in Minnesota. After the birth of his daughter Scottie in 1922, he and wife Zelda moved to Great Neck, New York. This Long Island location would become the setting for his 1925 masterpiece, The Great Gatsby—regarded by critics as the Great American Novel. Although Fitzgerald moved away from Minnesota early in his career, he returned again and again to his life experiences in St. Paul through his fiction, establishing the city as a literary mecca. Two local Fitzgerald scholars, Joel Pace and Dave Page, talk to KFAI producer Susan Gray about the St. Paul’s native son.

The Walker Art Center likes experimenting with experimental theater. The last time the Minneapolis performing arts venue commissioned a play by one New York theater company, it clocked in at seven hours long. KFAI’s Todd Melby reports on the Walker’s newest venture with that very same troupe: Elevator Repair Service.

North Dakota’s oil boom has made lots of people rich, including workers. Many people are buying new toys—pickups, boats and the like. But one woman is spending her oil field cash on a budding Minneapolis music career. Mousey McGlynn recently celebrated the release of her new music video with an event called “Sensory Soiree” in Northeast Minneapolis.

Public Functionary is new on the scene in Northeast Minneapolis—the city’s designated arts district. Last fall community members raised more than $30,000 on a Kickstarter campaign to support the new space. KFAI visited with Public Functionary founder Tricia Khutoretsky to learn more.

Have you ever dreamed of being someone else? At this year’s Northern Spark, one local artist is offering you the chance to become a Mexican wrestling superhero.

Native Minnesotan Mary Mack has a widespread following for her hilarious comedy and folk humor. An award-winning stand-up comedian, she also produces short videos and parodies, essays, and songs. Her unique voice is unmistakeable, and recently she was selected to do a voice for a late-night animated show on the FOX network.

This year Northern Spark—the all-night Twin Cities art festival—moves to Lowertown, St. Paul. Beginning at dusk on June 8, participants can experience an array of art installations, performances and interactive exhibits. KFAI producer Sabrina Crews talks to Sarah Peters, Associate Director of Northern Spark, and local artist John Keston about some of this year’s highlights.

What do flapjacks and log cabin mornings have in common? They conjure up the sweet smell of maple syrup. These days, more and more people are learning how to make harvest their own syrup. KFAI’s Britt Aamodt visited Lake Maria State Park for a demonstration.