Did somebody say, “where are the hot summers of our past?” Could have been me, I guess, but boy, has summer come back in a big way. It’s a bit unfortunate for the state fair as I can imagine more than a few might think twice about visiting in these temps. But, the show must go on and there is a lot to do, so let’s hope the impact isn’t too severe. 

Speaking of the state fair, did anyone else catch notice of their plans to remodel Heritage Square and put a big transit hub in that area? A transit hub that would increase the use of the Commonwealth entrance by mass transit vehicles. No mention of impact on the neighborhood, but they want to take some of the pressure off the Como entrance, which is understandable. It would be nice if they could contact our neighborhood reps before they make their decision, which could come as early as this Friday. Perhaps all the buses will come in on the transitway minimizing bus traffic in our neighborhood. Perhaps. 

While we’re musing about the state fair, make sure to check out the front page article on the just delivered Bugle about neighbor Teresa Anderson’s prize-winning crop art. Teresa has been submitting entries to the iconic competition for a decade and her style has evolved to represent a definite political point of view. While you’ve got your nose in the paper, also check out the great articles on the Art Train proposed for the Creative Enterprise Zone, Transition Town, Christmas in Lauderdale and the usual collection of interesting stories about people and events in our area. 

We've been taking advantage of the relatively open seating at our local food shops during the state fair. They all have wonderful dishes you will not find at the fair in calm air-conditioned atmospheres. We are lucky to be able to get away from the chaos and enjoy tasty, fresh summer delicacies by foot. Why cook in this heat? Take a stay-cation to healthy and delicious food all over our neighborhood.

D12 – Dates have been set for the annual garage sale, Sat. Sept. 14 and the follow-up Neighborhood Clean-up on Sept.  21. Now is the time to start divesting yourselves of things that can be recycled or disposed of properly. Our neighbor moved out yesterday and it’s surprising how much a house can hold of things only the owner appreciates. My wife gave me the “look” as we were watching the progress last week. I’ve been warned. There is all sorts of other info on the D12 website, so visit and have your questions answered. 

Schools – Look out, fall classes will start next Tuesday in St. Paul. I feel sorry for the school districts that are gamely trying to keep students and teachers from melting away in classes that started yesterday. My daughter works in a Mpls high school and she said it was hot but the attitudes were great. That’s a good sign. 

StAP Elementary School
This is the first year without the leadership of the 6th graders to help steer the ship and patrol the crosswalks. Please take special care as you drive around our community during the times before and after school. Practice patience and safe driving practices, these kids can do the job, but no matter what age, they need drivers to be respectful.

They also have a new drama club meeting after school to play theater games and eventually put on a production. There is an Open House for all students and parents this Thursday starting at 4pm. Check out their website it will tell you everything you need to know. They also have a blog that covers the rest. 

Murray Middle School
Murray will be busting at the seams with over 800 students, including the newly invited 6th graders from around our sector, and a new principal, Stacy Theien-Collins. They are featuring an enhanced website and an open house for 6th & 7th graders called Camp 67 that will meet August 29. Not sure the time, but probably late afternoon/early evening so parents can attend as well. The new configuration will take patience, support and attention from all of us to make it work, so if you have time to get involved at Murray as a tutor (Pilot One-on-One Program) or in any other helpful way, volunteer at their website. 

Como High School
Also has an enhanced website welcoming students and families back for the new school year. Como boasts a more comprehensive AP program than any other public high school in the District and their Academy of Finance is unique as a launch pad for any students interested in business and finance. They even staff their own credit union branch office in the school. 

Listserv

Has been a little quiet save the steady drum of free things being left on curbs. After the garage sale and clean-up, will there be anything left in anyone’s house? 

Indoor Dog Park
There is an indoor option for doggie play on cool days (yes, they are coming) over on Front Street. It costs money, but it’s available for $10 a shot for a one-hour session. Don’t know anything else about it, but here’s the website.

Who needs the State Fair?
Chocolat Celeste is offering chocolate bacon truffles on a stick to lure people with state fair cravings to her delicious house of goodies over at 652 Transfer Rd, just north of University Ave by the Amtrak Station. 

Owls & Soccer Nets
The Raptor Center has put out a plea to lay down soccer nets when not in use as they have treated a number of badly injured Great Horned Owls who have gotten tangled pursuing small mammals at night.  Who would have guessed? 

StAPnotes

Kevin Ward, a teacher at Avalon School in SSA is holding a one-day writing workshop connected to Jane Austen's novel, Pride and Prejudice.  The workshop is free and open to students entering their senor year of high school, and it will be held from 10-1 on Saturday, September 7, at Avalon School in St. Paul.  Food will be provided. 

That’s all for now. Take care of yourself and be a good neighbor.