The (not so) complete history of Pierre “Pig’s Eye” Parrant

Given St. Paul’s colorful past, it shouldn’t be surprising that the city’s first resident of European descent was a bar owner with legal troubles, and the first building was his eponymous bar. Pierre “Pig’s Eye” Parrant’s early years are shrouded in mystery. Here are things the historical records seem to agree on: He was born … [ Read more]

Meet Adrian Heath: Minnesota United FC’s new head coach

New Minnesota United FC head coach Adrian Heath put down his pint glass, left the table of United supporters he was chatting up, and mounted the stairs of The Local on Tuesday night to address the entire bar. The Growler’s Joe Alton and I debated if any other coach in town would be caught dead … [ Read more]

Roaring Dan Seavey: Pirate of the Great Lakes

When you envision a pirate, there’s a definite pop culture template. Johnny Depp, obviously; maybe Captain Hook or Errol Flynn for you old-timers. (Underrated pirate: Dave Parker of the 1979 World Series champion Pittsburgh Pirates.) He has an eye patch, a treasure map, a sword, and he says “arrrrrrrrrr” and “matey,” a lot. He is … [ Read more]

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St. Paul’s Field of Dreams: Baseball hopefuls test their mettle at Saints’ open tryouts

Every year, the St. Paul Saints hold open tryouts for potential players. Every year, most of them fall short. Every year, they come back. The press release for the May 5th event is literally titled “Fulfill a Dream,” and there is a precedent for fighting the long odds. The Saints’ all-time winningest pitcher, Charlie Ruud, … [ Read more]

Crashing her way around the world

How Minnesota-native Sydney O’Keefe got hooked on the Red Bull Crashed Ice circuit Crashed Ice, or, as nobody you know calls it, ice cross downhill, is the Red Bull–sponsored extreme sport that is returning to St. Paul later this month. A combination of speed skating, downhill skiing, and a complete and utter disregard for self … [ Read more]

The Legend of Joe Rolette: The Most Interesting Man in Minnesota History

There’s a thing called ghosting, in which a person breaks off all communication with the world, ignoring all texts, calls, e-mails, semaphore flags, ASL, telegrams, etc. (Parents: Ask your kids if this is still unclear.) The New York Times discovered it when Charlize Theron went AWOL on Sean Penn. You may remember that Wisconsin legislators also … [ Read more]

Taking center stage: The beer revival in middle Minnesota

Breweries in the heart of Minnesota are popping up faster than holiday décor in big-box stores, but do they have what it takes to make it long-term? You probably have a mental image of what an outstate Minnesota beer drinker looks like. It’s a guy. He’s middle-aged, a little paunchy, wearing a jacket with his … [ Read more]