Lucha libre is a style of Mexican wrestling that blends acrobatics, combat, and classic narrative tropes of good and evil to engage audiences. One local company, Rudos Promotions, brings lucha libre to northeast Minneapolis once a month. They also provide training to new wrestlers during the week.
Emerald Ash Borer has forced the city of Minnetonka foresters to remove or treat more than 60,000 ash trees. This leaves a huge surplus of cut branches and logs. Currently, metro-area cities pay a fee to ship their extra mulch to a dump site.
But anyone who has seen the price of lumber lately might wonder: why wouldn’t a city try to make use of these surplus ash logs? KFAI’s Timothy Foss visited some Minnetonka foresters at their new sawmill to learn how they are doing just that.
“The fur trade,” as it is commonly referred, was a period of cultural and economic exchange between Native Americans and European Americans, according to the Minnesota Historical Society. As the pages of history were put down, one aspect that was continually overlooked is the role women played at home, in the woods, and throughout many aspects of life during the fur trade. The simple truth is that Indigenous women actively contributed to the success of the North American fur trade, according to Karl Koster, a Minnesota historian who specializes in the history of the iconic fur trade.
In this MinneCulture In-Depth feature, KFAI contributor Joe Friedrichs explores the role of women during the fur trade as told through the lens of a Grand Marais woman, Laura Powell Marxen. Laura continues to trap and sell fur on Minnesota’s North Shore, much like her great-grandmother, Mary Ottertail, did in the early 1900s near what is now the end of the Gunflint Trail.
The Twin Cities is home to a vibrant community of animators. Their films range from hand-drawn to digital, often jettisoning conventional narrative for dazzling spectacle. Audiences can usually catch their work in a range of annual festivals, from MinnAnimate to the Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Film Festival.
A filmmaker who has been a stalwart presence at both festivals is CC Stanhill. Their mind-bending odes to fluid creativity are buoyed by beguilingly homespun animation. KFAI’s Nick Kouhi spoke with Stanhill about the creative process behind their body of work ,as well as the joy that underlines every painstakingly drawn frame of their art.
By 1965, the Beatles were the biggest music group in the world. They sold millions of records. They recorded songs that were not only popular but also took music in new directions. And everywhere they went, they stirred up an excitement so hysterical and commonplace there was a word for it: Beatlemania.
Minnesota fans had fallen in love with the Lads from Liverpool the moment they appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show in February 1964. But the Beatles passed Minnesota by on their first North American tour, and there was no guarantee they would stop by on their second. But they did.
In the mid-century, Minnesota’s metro area condensed. Smaller townships incorporated and then were annexed by larger cities. The patchwork of farms and country were filled in with real estate and businesses, creating the cities, suburbs, and exurbs we know today. But in Columbia Heights. one tiny town popped up and got in the way of this smooth transition – and they almost got erased for it.
Recreational ax throwing spaces have been popping up across the Twin Cities. An activity historically reserved for frontiersmen and lumberjacks, ax throwing is now available to all. Getting the ax to stick in the target isn’t always easy, but at Bad Axe Throwing in Minneapolis, site lead Ollie and ax throwing coach Tomia will teach anyone who wants to learn.
Archives tell an important story. The people in them—and the people left out—say a lot about our politics, culture, and consciousness. In the 20th century, it wasn’t uncommon for archivists to choose which artifacts made it into the official record based on what they thought defined our history. This means that a lot of people—especially queer people—were left out of the archives. Their lives were erased.
But over the last few decades, historians are uncovering those queer lives. In this episode of MinneCulture, KFAI’s Kira Schukar takes us into the Minnesota Historical Society archives to share a story about love, letters, and resilience. Spanning almost 100 years, this narrative follows a first lady, a philanthropist, and the queer activists who wanted their story to be told.