Naomi Yaeger is a freelance writer and the former editor of the Budgeteer. See her blog at www.DuluthDailyPhoto.com.
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The Duluth Woman's Club, a mansion on East Superior Street, was abuzz with women drinking tea and wearing vintage hats as a way of celebrating voting rights last Saturday (March 16.) It was part of the League of Women Voter's "Equali-Tea" celebration and fundraiser. "This is an annual event for the League of Women Voters in Duluth, something we've been doing for several years to celebrate suffrage," said event organizer Nancy Bratrud. "We chose tea because this is a way that original founders got together to discuss the need for women to vote.
The Harbor Side Ballroom in the DECC was a sea of more than 350 lunch-goers dressed in red on Wednesday for the ninth annual Go Red For Women Luncheon sponsored by the American Heart Association. Tom Skull, events director for the American Heart Association's Duluth office, said he noticed a couple people who did not wear red, and that one man even donned a red suit. Northland NewsCenter's Michelle Lee emceed the event. The keynote speakers were Dr. Mary Boylan, a cardiothoracic surgeon for St. Luke's Hospital, and Dr. Kim Boddicker, a cardiologist at Essentia Health's Duluth Clinic.
With an audience of more than 70 people at the Greysolon Plaza listening in rapt attention, Doug Antonich told how he used to try to control everything his wife and family did. "I was angry, anxious, and wanted to control everything in our household, from how we spent our money to how the Tupperware cupboard was organized," he said. His story, told with his wife, Bonnie, was the keynote speech for the Domestic Abuse Intervention Program's Heart of Change fundraising luncheon two days before Valentine's Day.
How much longer will the Girl Scouts be selling their cookies this year? "That's the question of the year" -- or at least one that's asked frequently at this time of year, said Martha Livingston, a volunteer development assistant at the Lakes and Pines Girl Scouts of Minnesota and Wisconsin. After a good month of cookie sales, Livingston said a cookie boost of Girl Scouts selling cookies at booths at stores is expected the last week in March. Last month, local scouts participated in a "Cookies in the Courtyard" event to celebrate National Girl Scout Cookie Day on Feb. 8.
In sub-zero temperatures one day in January, Steve Thomas was heating 28 large rocks in a wood fire. Then he used a pitchfork to place them inside a sweat lodge located on the property of the Arrowhead Juvenile Center on Arlington Road. Inside the detention facility, American Indian youth serving in the Juvenile Detention Alternative Initiative were preparing for the sweat lodge by staying mentally positive. Thomas is a community resource specialist employed by the Fond du Lac Band.
Whole Foods Co-op member Walter Sipila said he wanted to share how beautiful water can be when it freezes into a sphere. So he created colorful ice globes and placed them in the flower box in front of Whole Foods Co-op, 601 E. Fourth St. His method is to pour water into balloons during mild winter weather and let them sit outside. If it's too cold, the globes crack. Food coloring is used to give the globes their color. At night, LED lights inside the ice illuminate the globes.
The man is wearing a wedding ring. He's dressed in a suit coat, dress shirt and tie. To his right are the words, "This man wants to rent your daughter. It happens here." The "here" referred to is Duluth, and the image graces two billboards -- one on Grand Avenue near the bus depot and the other off Interstate 35. Two websites are listed on them: www.sharedhope.org and www.pavsa.org . "Sex trafficking doesn't just happen in big cities," Taryn Mastrean of Shared Hope International, an international organization that advocates against sex trafficking, told the Budgeteer.
Former Duluthian Carla Stetson, best known for her Clayton Jackson McGhie Memorial sculpture, and Cecilia Ramon are pairing up for a full-scale installation piece, "Confluence/Confluencia," for the Duluth Art Institute's Morrison Gallery at the Depot. The exhibit opens Jan. 17. "Cecilia had a stellar installation at the Duluth Art Institute eight years ago where she used wood," said Anne Dugan, curator at the DAI. "She has a background in Sumi-e ink painting.
When Ben Small was a young boy, his father took the family on a trip to Washington, D.C. to lobby Congress. Small says that trip set the stage for his later life. His father was a union representative in the postal service and was working on a case involving pay and other grievances. "The fact that he worked on that for so long and he finally won ... it was impressive to me." Small said. "He was primarily a letter carrier, so it was a labor of love for him." As a teenager, Small again traveled to Washington, this time with a friend and the friend's mother, who was a paralegal.
A Native round dance in support of Idle No More and Chief Teresa Spence took place at Miller Hill Mall on Saturday, Dec. 22. Idle No More is a solidarity movement originating in Canada, out of frustration among many First Nations people over environmental policy and treaty rights in Canada. Spence, chief of the Attawapiskat nation in Ontario, was on a 16-day hunger strike as of Dec. 26. "Shoppers stopped and smiled," said Reyna Crow, one of the organizers. An estimated 175 people showed up in support of the event.