I know I said I would be taking a couple weeks off, but I just wanted to share a new year's greeting with you all. 2012 is shaping up to be a very interesting year for our community and country. We have community development planning to do in both north and south and, of course, much of it has to do with light rail edging ever closer. Just 2 years away!

I've been preparing myself by making sure my stomach is never empty. Locally, I have enjoyed meals at our newest restaurant, the Colossal Cafe in North StAP, great food, great people and a big success if the regularly filled tables are an indication. If you're looking to avoid the hassle of cooking meals, by all means keep our local food stops in mind. There are also tasty full menus to be had at the Muffuletta, Finnish Bistro, Mim's, Cafe Caribe, Keys, the Egg & I and Biaggio's. 

Unfortunately, there have been unwelcome visitors to two of our local businesses. Last week the St. Paul Cookie Company was held up during the day and someone broke into Mim's/Lori's overnight. No injuries, but certainly not the kind of thing you want happening anytime, least of all during the holidays. I don't have anymore info about either, but will let you know when I do.

Finally, I want to thank everyone who volunteered time, energy or financial support for our neighborhood durning the year. St. Anthony Park would not be the great place it is without you all. If you are still looking for a quick way to donate before the end of the year, most of our non-profit orgs (including the foundation :) are part of GiveMN.org. All you have to do is go to their website and type in the name of the charity, then follow directions. I know each and every one of those orgs would appreciate any contribution you could make, it makes a big difference to the quality of life of so many neighbors.

That's all for now, take care of yourself and be a good neighbor. And Happy New year!