The State Fair has shot off its final round of fireworks, the midway is packing it in, and families are back from their last long weekend for a while. Now, election season is at hand and once the conventions are over, the canvassing, door-knocking and phone calls will start in earnest. We may get tired of all the requests for time and money, but remember how important it is to exercise our democratic rights and how critical your vote will be this November. Don’t even think about not voting. Get to the polls and work for your candidates of choice. This country deserves it, your community deserves it and our future depends on it.

Speaking of our future, most schools are back in session as of this week. At St.AP Elementary this will be the last year of 6th grade – it will become a K-5 school in the fall semester of 2013 – and that carries some sadness. We have known school upheaval before when Murray was changed from a Sr. High to a Jr. High. Next year Murray will add back on a grade as it becomes a 6-8 middle school. Preparations are under way at both schools to make this transition as smooth as possible. We have a great group of parents, teachers, staff and two exceptional principals who are working to make sure all the right questions are being asked and answered. There will be some challenges as the district makes an historic effort to address the achievement gap but this plan is showing positive results and it needs our support.

There are some teachers and staff from our local schools who are celebrating 25 years of service to the St. Paul School District, here they are:

SAP Elementary: Kathy Maguire and Judy Roe
Murray: Ron Beck, David Donch, Mike Laska

Como High School: Laurie Payton, Abdomohammed Karimi

Congratulations and thanks for all the hard work on behalf of our kids.

D12 – The Creative Enterprise Zone is continuing to develop in interesting ways. A recent wayfinding project by Carrie Christensen placed colorful bikes around the Zone with directions to local landmarks. An event coming up on Oct. 10 called Give and Take will bring the community together for an evening centered around the questions of “what do you know?” and “what do you want to know?” The event uses these two simple questions to launch an interactive evening of presentations, performances, and participatory games. More about that on their site. Two weeks ago Katie Novotny’s St. Paul Cookie Company on Raymond & Territorial had to close down for a few days. They’ve been struggling through the construction and needed to ask customers to help them out with pre-orders so they could make their license fee. The response was very generous and that support allowed them to get back on their feet. They need our continued support so if you don’t know about their delicious cookies, get on over and try them out. If you do, what are you waiting for? While you’re in the area, stop by Foxy Falafels (the old Café Caribe space) for some very tasty food. They just opened a couple weeks ago and are a welcome addition to our community.

Listserv – word spread quickly about the impending departure of longtime Como Station employee Tim Thorson. The P.O. has decided that site only needs one full time position. That means Annette with seniority will stay and Tim has to move. Hopefully, we can all start sending more mail and get him back, but until that time, stop by to say thanks and goodbye over the next week…our St. Anthony Park Home got a warm review online from a family member whose mother spent the last 8 months of her life there recently. The dignity and respect shown by the staff was very much appreciated. We are very fortunate to have such a wonderful facility in our neighborhood…

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