Wassail! The pagan origins of a Yuletide cider festival

Reprinted with permission from “Ciderology” by Gabe Cook, Spruce 2018 If you happen to be in the West of England during January, you might catch sight and sound of some rather unexpected activities. Some rather pagan activities. For one month a year, an area famed for its tranquility and gentle nature packs away the tea … [ Read more]

Winter Cyclist Appreciation Day

To pay homage to Minnesota bicyclists who brave all types of weather, Urban Forage will have hot cider and happy hour prices all day if you’re wearing bike gear. Stay connected with the Facebook event page.

Luminary Loppet

Light up your night at the Luminary Loppet, returning to the Lake of the Isles. Walk, snowshoe, or ski along candlelit trails, while also enjoying multiple hot chocolate pit stops along with way. Plus, thanks to a Minnesota State Arts Board grant, the Luminary Loppet will feature three new elements—an ice forest, traveling illuminated penguin … [ Read more]

Twin Cities the first U.S. host of the Winter Cycling Congress

The Twin Cities will play host to an international gathering on winter bicycling Feb. 2–4, reports MPR News. The Winter Cycling Congress is expected to draw hundreds of engineers, policy makers, and bicycling enthusiasts to Minneapolis and St. Paul starting on Tuesday. This is the first time the annual gathering has been held in the … [ Read more]

The National Park Service proves that some things in life actually are free

The National Park Service is celebrating their 100th anniversary this year by offering free admission to each of the 409 parks on 16 days in 2016. The first day is Martin Luther King Jr. Day, on Monday, January 18. There is one national park in Minnesota—Voyageurs—and a handful of nationally designated areas, including Grand Portage National Monument, the … [ Read more]

How to cross ‘Dogsled the Boundary Waters’ off your winter bucket list

Minnesota’s million-plus-acre Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCAW), obviously, is best known for wilderness canoeing—many would say the best in the world. But winter transforms this magnificent landscape into a forested cathedral of ice, snow and silence, offering a wilderness experience like no other. Bring a beautiful, hard-working team of Canadian Inuit dogs into the … [ Read more]

The Last Great Race: A Minnesotan’s Incredible Rise in Sled Dog Racing & Why He Left it All Behind

The Greyhound bus pulled away, leaving Jake Berkowitz stranded on a dirt road in the middle of northern Michigan. A few days earlier, the 18-year-old was celebrating Thanksgiving with his family in St. Paul, Minnesota. Now he was alone, waiting for a stranger to pick him up and introduce him to a way of life … [ Read more]

Winter warriors: how food trucks brave Minnesota’s harshest season

There’s a local industry growing at a phenomenal rate. A decade ago, it was virtually non-existent; now there are over 100 entities. No, not breweries: We’re talking about food trucks. As the temperatures drop and the snow accumulates (hypothetically, at least), some of those 100-plus trucks will go into hibernation. Others, though, will layer up … [ Read more]

New to Minnesota? Come get a hat. (You’re going to need it.)

People born and raised in Minnesota tend to minimize (or straight up ignore) how brutal our winters can be. Call it survival, call it stubbornness, but the truth is, we like to pretend that weeks of sub-zero highs are normal. Reality check: We’re wrong. And Minnesota newbies are calling us out. Saint Paul Hello was founded by Jun-Li Wang, … [ Read more]

Louie The Loon – By DWITT

Louie the Loon points out a few silver linings of our staying-longer-than-its-welcome spring.