I'll start with the slightly disappointing news that we did not reach our fundraising goal for the StAP coffeetable photo book in the short two month window given by the online site we used. It was tough to get people interested during the summer and when we did start to gain some momentum, the site itself didn't function properly. Hopefully, everyone who donated got a notice from Indiegogo with a refund of their donation. If not, please contact me. The good news is that enough people showed interest to make us think it's still a good idea, so we will go back to the drawing board and see if we can think of another way to get it done. Thanks to everyone who did support it or tried to, keep your eyes peeled for updates.

National Night Out was last night and I heard of several block parties where  neighbors took to the streets to celebrate our neighborhoods. We should do it more often, I like seeing the streets shut down while people get to know each other better. We will have several more opportunities to socialize in the last Park B4 Dark coming up on August 16 and then, of course, at the Great Minnesota Get-together in late August/early September. And then, summer is officially over, school back in session and a very big election coming up. Should be an exciting fall.

D12 - has a very busy schedule with their Annual Meeting September 26 ( a great time to meet your elected officials and we have some new ones after redistricting), the Garage Sale September 15 (a good time to make a little money off all that stuff you don't need), the annual cleanup September 22 (a good time to get rid of all the stuff you couldn't sell) and the Home Tour October 6 (a good time to snoop into some of the many lovely homes we have in our community.) More details on all of that on their website...Corey Dor for the House is a performative and historical investigation into the many campaign headquarters through the years that have been housed in the Creative Enterprise Zone. Fiona MacNeill is the artist who has been delving into the past and will present her findings at the Pop-up Gallery at 2401 University Avenue August 23 -26. For more info check out the site.

listserv - Nematodes is the word of the day as those of us who have plants under siege from Japanese beetles try to find ways to keep them from being devoured. Nematodes are little parasitic worms that go into the ground where they find the larvae of the beetles and basically kill them. That's not the scientific explanation but it's close. If we do it enough it may cut down on the numbers over time. Or it may not, but it's better for our environment then poisons which simply kill the beetles on contact, but harm other insects as well. Apparently it works best on lawns with sprinkler systems - must need steady moisture to survive. Union Park is ordering them and if you are interested in getting some, you could call their office or contact the D12 office and they can direct you to someone who can give you the necessary info...The Goldstein Museum of Design on the St. Paul Campus is making an offer you should definitely check into. The collector of the baskets in their current exhibit, Nancy Schermer, (also an author of a book on the baskets) is offering to give personally guided tours of the exhibit. Just call the Museum at 612-624-7434 to set up a tour.

StAPnotes - The Colossal Cafe is now open nights, Wednesday & Thursday 4:30-9pm,  Friday & Saturday 4:30 - 10pm. I haven't been there yet, but hear the food is delicious and they have a small but interesting beer and wine selection. Stop by and see what Elizabeth and John Tinucci are cooking up...The Bush Foundation recently named neighbor, Jennifer Ford Reedy, as their new Executive Director. Jennifer has been working for the Minnesota Philanthropy Partners (new name for the Saint Paul Foundation) as VP of Strategy where she was a part of the GiveMN and Minnesota Idea Open projects. We wish her the best in an important new position...designs for the new Monkey Island playground equipment are moving forward as neighbors and the city are coming to an agreement on what it will look like and how it will be paid for. Nothing is finalized, but the community will have to come up with a portion of the funding to get it done...Plans are under way to fund the Boss Thrust Stage a new addition for Park Square Theater in Lowertown. The theater would be named after neighbor Andy Boss for his longtime support of the theater and St. Paul. You'll be hearing more in the weeks to come.

That's all for now, no blog next week as I will be on vacation. Take care of yourself and be a good neighbor.