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Jeff Strickler

Reporter | Features
phone: 612-673-7392
Jeff Strickler works on the Variety staff, where he splits his time between reporting on a wide array of general-interest feature stories and serving as an assistant features editor.
Recent content from Jeff Strickler
Team of Twin Cities aficionados works to get church bells ringing again

Team of Twin Cities aficionados works to get church bells ringing again

A growing number of Twin Cities advocates are reviving long dormant church bells, to ring out the “heartbeat of the city.”
Minnesota running series is booming by offering a beer chaser

Minnesota running series is booming by offering a beer chaser

“5K-ish” runs tap into the craft brewery boom by pairing neighborhood jogs with local beers.
Day trip: Jordan is much more than you see from the highway

Day trip: Jordan is much more than you see from the highway

Just a few blocks off Hwy. 169, Jordan is nestled along the Minnesota River. While the residential streets have a suburban feel — this town of 6,000 is just a half-hour commute from Minneapolis — the downtown evokes a quaint, turn-of-the-century small town.
Retired Realtor finds a home raising gentle – and humming – alpacas

Retired Realtor finds a home raising gentle – and humming – alpacas

The animals — 18 alpacas as well as “horses, a dog, cats and one giant macaw” — are the Abbey’s Little Brothers and Sisters.
Study: Vikings fans have terrible grammar

Study: Vikings fans have terrible grammar

Online proofreading service Grammarly says Vikings fans rank 26th out of 32 NFL fan bases when it comes to grammar.

Vikings fans aren't scoring many points for grammar

We Vikings fans don’t express us selves so good. In online fan postings for NFL teams, our grammar stinked and our spelling was abismal ……
5 reasons for and against paying attention to Mayweather-Pacquiao bout

5 reasons for and against paying attention to Mayweather-Pacquiao bout

Five reasons for and against paying attention to the Mayweather-Pacquiao bout.
If you're getting older, you'd better learn how to fall

If you're getting older, you'd better learn how to fall

Elliott Royce estimates that he has fallen down at least 15,000 times over the past 10 years.Royce, who is turning 96, falls on purpose at…
White Bear Lake leukemia patient races to set record for high-fiving

White Bear Lake leukemia patient races to set record for high-fiving

A determined young leukemia patient races to set the world record for high-fiving.
Baby boomers should not have survived childhood (studies show)

Baby boomers should not have survived childhood (studies show)

No helmets or seat belts? They spent their days immersed in activities that they’d never for a second allow their children or grandchildren do. Or even think about doing.
Church program offers hot soup, warm welcome

Church program offers hot soup, warm welcome

A chef who once spent a year living under the Franklin Avenue bridge and a hard-charging minister who recently took over a struggling Minneapolis church have joined forces to redefine the soup kitchen.
Auto fetishes: The cars we fell in love with

Auto fetishes: The cars we fell in love with

Cars used to be seen as extensions of our personalities. You could tell what sort of a person someone was — or wanted to be — by the car they drove.

Art in Bloom: Same name but two different shows

If you plan to go to the Art in Bloom show this year, make sure you end up going to the right one. There will…

Scientist's latte helps with breakthrough on fuel spills

A scientist’s morning latte has led to a potential new way to minimize fuel spills. Emilie Dressaire, a mechanical engineer at New York University’s Polytechnic…
Competitive tree climber is headed to the top

Competitive tree climber is headed to the top

One of the first female arborists in the state is on her way to an international tournament.

Ikea furniture to include wireless phone recharging

Ikea costumers should get a charge out of the Swedish company’s new line of furniture.Literally get a charge — as in for their smartphones and…
Alzheimer's chorus specializes in songs to remember

Alzheimer's chorus specializes in songs to remember

A choir for people facing Alzheimer's taps into music's power to circumvent memory loss.
95-year-old shares tricks of safe falling

95-year-old shares tricks of safe falling

Elliott Royce takes practice falls at least five times every morning. He doesn’t just practice; he preaches, too. He goes to assisted living centers, senior centers and community centers to talk about how to prevent serious injuries if you take a tumble.
Write? On paper? Summer camp letters are an oddity in digital world

Write? On paper? Summer camp letters are an oddity in digital world

Most summer camps frown on — if not outright ban — all forms of electronic communication. They do, however, encourage the campers to communicate with their parents. With letters. Written by hand. Sent by mail. What is this, the Dark Ages?
Professional rodeo cowboys aren't just horsing around

Professional rodeo cowboys aren't just horsing around

Modern-day cowboys, who consider themselves athletes, not outlaws, take their rodeos seriously.
St. Cloud pedaling pioneer has been biking in winter for 30 years

St. Cloud pedaling pioneer has been biking in winter for 30 years

The first time Jim Bertram hopped on his bicycle to commute to work in the dead of winter, he didn’t have any anti-frosting goggles, polypropylene leggings or extra-wide tires. They didn’t exist. That’s because the St. Cloud man started biking year-round 30 years ago.
Danes raise a glass to alcohol-induced ingenuity

Danes raise a glass to alcohol-induced ingenuity

A Danish beer maker's marketing campaign capitalizes on a study that found that drinking increases creativity — at least, at first. The effect exists only until the drinker’s blood alcohol level reaches 0.075 percent; after that, things start going downhill fast.
With Mercury in retrograde, we can remain blameless

With Mercury in retrograde, we can remain blameless

For the next three weeks, no matter what goes wrong, we’re off the hook, blame-wise anyway. At 9:54 a.m. Wednesday, Mercury is going into retrograde, a phenomenon during which the planet appears to move backward across the sky. Even more important, according to many astrologists, it also makes things go wrong.
Google this: Do Internet searches mirror our moods?

Google this: Do Internet searches mirror our moods?

If you buy the theory that Google searches reflect our moods, then spring and fall -- not winter -- are the times of the year that we're the most miserable.
Citrus Bowl: 91-year-old is a Gophers fan for the ages

Citrus Bowl: 91-year-old is a Gophers fan for the ages

The last time the Gophers played in a New Year’s Day bowl game was in 1962, and Andy Dyrdal was there. He'll be in Orlando on Thursday.
Matthew Little, 92: Tenacious defender of human rights

Matthew Little, 92: Tenacious defender of human rights

As the longtime president of the Minneapolis chapter of the NAACP, he was on the front lines of the civil rights struggles of the 1960s and ’70s, in his own community and beyond.
Nancy Brataas, 86: Dauntless force for women in politics

Nancy Brataas, 86: Dauntless force for women in politics

A former Republican Party chair and the first woman elected to the state Senate on her own merits, she was a master organizer and indefatigable champion for Rochester.
History Center toy story is nearing its final chapter

History Center toy story is nearing its final chapter

It’s time to quit playing around if you want to see the popular “Toys of the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s” exhibit at the Minnesota History Center. The show is closing Jan. 4.
Shedding light on solstice celebrations

Shedding light on solstice celebrations

Celebrations commemorating the winter solstice are growing in popularity in the Twin Cities.
Minneapolis vintage bridal shop offers gowns and memories

Minneapolis vintage bridal shop offers gowns and memories

Vintage bridal-gown shop offers new brides something old and precious — the stories of the original owners.

Fans eat up the idea of a vegan butcher shop

The creators of a fast-selling line of vegetarian meats are preparing to open a store in Minneapolis.
Black Friday goes artsy at MIA's anti-shopping event

Black Friday goes artsy at MIA's anti-shopping event

The Minneapolis Institute of Arts draws a crowd for an early morning anti-shopping event.
Marriage proposal was a real puzzler for Twin Cities crossword fan

Marriage proposal was a real puzzler for Twin Cities crossword fan

What’s a 15-letter term for proposal? For a Twin Cities couple, it’s “crossword puzzle.”
Winter's early arrival puts a chill on home chores

Winter's early arrival puts a chill on home chores

Winter’s surprise arrival caught many of us with a “to do” list that wasn’t quite “done.” But there are very good reasons to tackle some chores, no matter how unsavory the thought of battling the cold, snow and ice might be.

Deflating the myths about pumping up

Strength training has built up a strong set of preconceptions. They include:It will make you bulk up.False. In fact, it’s a moot point for women,…
Twin Cities man trades commodities work for healing arts

Twin Cities man trades commodities work for healing arts

After three decades of high-pressure deal making, a futures trader gave up million-dollar deals to soothe people who are in pain.
Peak performances: Skier tests sanity as well as ability

Peak performances: Skier tests sanity as well as ability

An elite Minnesota skier, now featured in an adventure film, tackles some of the most difficult mountains in the world.
There's something fishy about these jack-o-lanterns

There's something fishy about these jack-o-lanterns

Mall of America aquarium’s divers are taking a deep-water interest in carving pumpkins.
Organist plays with chutzpah

Organist plays with chutzpah

Since 1969, an Edina church has been singing to a Jewish organist. She stumbled into the unlikely profession, and discovered a passion for the music and the congregation.
Como Zoo primates go ape over harp music

Como Zoo primates go ape over harp music

A volunteer harpist has found an appreciative audience among the gorillas, orangutans and monkeys at the Como Park Zoo.
Climate change threatens loon, other Minnesota birds, Audubon study finds

Climate change threatens loon, other Minnesota birds, Audubon study finds

If climate change keeps raising Minnesota temperatures, loons and other birds could push north.
Bar Abilene in Uptown closes

Bar Abilene in Uptown closes

The note thanked customers, employees and vendors, but did not state a reason for the closure.
Why we hate to wait

Why we hate to wait

If you want to complain about waiting, you'll need to get in line.
Kickball-golf hybrid is exploding in popularity in Minnesota

Kickball-golf hybrid is exploding in popularity in Minnesota

Footgolf, a kickball-golf hybrid, is the hot game on the fairways as courses spring up around the Twin Cities at a blistering pace.
Golden Valley woman walks neighborhood every day for 20 years

Golden Valley woman walks neighborhood every day for 20 years

Joan Monson enthusiastically welcomes anyone who wants to join her on her daily walk, but the invitation comes with a caveat: “You know that if it’s raining, we’re still going.”
Homeless youths tell their stories in a movie they're making

Homeless youths tell their stories in a movie they're making

A Twin Cities filmmaker hopes that pairing disadvantaged teens from six local homeless shelters with a crew of movie professionals will shed light on the challenges faced by the homeless and give the struggling young people a foot in the door.
Sailing for a song: Free rides on Lake Calhoun include a singalong

Sailing for a song: Free rides on Lake Calhoun include a singalong

You’ve heard of singing for your supper. Now, two gentle souls who love sailing – and singing – offer free rides on Lake Calhoun.
Obituary: Ted Weinberg sold satisfaction, not just cars

Obituary: Ted Weinberg sold satisfaction, not just cars

Over five decades of selling cars, Ted Weinberg sold a lot of them. But he made even more friends. “He treated people the way he…
Minnesota author challenges cemeteries' macabre stereotype

Minnesota author challenges cemeteries' macabre stereotype

A local “cemetery enthusiast” is on a crusade to change the macabre stereotype of these final resting places. To him, they might as well be public parks.
Retired car salesman now helps buyers

Retired car salesman now helps buyers

A tried-to-be-retired car salesman softens the hard sell by acting as an ally for buyers and working to save them money.
Urban Organics produces vegetables year-round

Urban Organics produces vegetables year-round

By taking organic farming indoors, a St. Paul company can supply vegetables – and fish – year-round.
Expanded Minneapolis Bike Week kicks off Sunday

Expanded Minneapolis Bike Week kicks off Sunday

In our long-running tug-of-war to be deemed the nation’s best biking city, we’re pulling out all the stops on Bike Week, which starts Sunday.
Memoir by Zach Sobiech's mom shines through the 'Clouds'

Memoir by Zach Sobiech's mom shines through the 'Clouds'

The Lakeland teenager became an international sensation after he was diagnosed with cancer and wrote a farewell song titled “Clouds.”
The cold, hard facts about the snow that lingers into spring

The cold, hard facts about the snow that lingers into spring

The calendar and the temperatures say it’s spring. But the last vestiges of our long, hard winter – the die-hard snowbanks – refuse to acknowledge the change in season.
Baseball teams are hoping for a hit with ultra-sized servings

Baseball teams are hoping for a hit with ultra-sized servings

The Major League Baseball season is only a week old, but the Minnesota Twins already are conceding one competition: the battle for league-leading gluttony. The…
No fooling: Internet has made hoaxes commonplace

No fooling: Internet has made hoaxes commonplace

The Web has taken all the steam out of April Fools’ jokes because tricking people has become an everyday occurrence online.
Minnesota's kids' game can't duck controversy

Minnesota's kids' game can't duck controversy

The game is Duck, Duck, Gray Duck. Or is it? If you think it’s Duck, Duck, Goose, then either: a) You’re wrong, b) You’re not from Minnesota, or c) Both.
Annual flower show offsets winter's nastiness

Annual flower show offsets winter's nastiness

Macy’s annual flower show opens this weekend, giving winter-weary Minnesotans a preview of spring.
Worst winter ever? Let's take a by-the-numbers look

Worst winter ever? Let's take a by-the-numbers look

The arrival of the spring equinox makes it official: We survived the most brutal winter in recent memory. Here’s a by-the-numbers look at the winter we can be proud to say we made it through.
I'm not Irish, but kiss me anyway

I'm not Irish, but kiss me anyway

Many traditions relished on St. Patrick’s Day trace their roots to places other than Ireland, including corned beef and cabbage, parades and green beer.
Will 'real' Irish bagpipes be remembered on St. Patrick's Day?

Will 'real' Irish bagpipes be remembered on St. Patrick's Day?

Although overshadowed by the much celebrated Highland bagpipe, a smaller, jazzier pipe claims to be the “real” Irish pipe.

Exhibit features our dinosaurs' southern cousins

“Ultimate Dinosaurs” is offering a new perspective on an old subject — in this case tens of millions of years old.“These are dinosaurs that a…
Nervous about data breaches, consumers are cashing in

Nervous about data breaches, consumers are cashing in

Credit and debit card data breaches are prompting some consumers to leave the plastic in their pockets and deal more in cash.
Ice follies: Curling's allure is sweeping Minnesota

Ice follies: Curling's allure is sweeping Minnesota

Curling is booming in Minnesota, bolstered by the Olympics, new technology and the sport’s unprecedented camaraderie.
Addiction relapses like Hoffman's aren't rare

Addiction relapses like Hoffman's aren't rare

Philip Symour Hoffman’s presumed death from an overdose shocked people who knew about how successful he’d been in battling his addiction issues. Treatment professionals, however, rarely are surprised by a relapse.
Achieving Excellence: Artist is raising her glass

Achieving Excellence: Artist is raising her glass

In our continuing series about everyday people mastering their craft, a local artist Bonnie Rubinstein reflects on glass.
Stress can be as contagious as germs

Stress can be as contagious as germs

We can easily pick up secondhand stress from the people around us. We also can pass it on.
Climbing league drives Twin Cities members up the wall

Climbing league drives Twin Cities members up the wall

While the Climbing Wall Association trade group extols the virtues of the sport’s total body workout, it hasn’t taken rank-and-file climbers long to discover the competitive possibilities.
Jan Kuehnemund, 59: Her guitar shredded barriers for women

Jan Kuehnemund, 59: Her guitar shredded barriers for women

She founded the all-girl metal band Vixen in 1973, while she was still in high school. Kicking open doors for women in the sexist world of rock music, she would one day be known as the Guitar Queen.
Warning: Office holiday snacking can be detrimental to your career

Warning: Office holiday snacking can be detrimental to your career

In the office holiday eating frenzy, the person with the biggest bowl of candy isn’t always the winner.
Pepin, Wis., blacksmith achieves excellence in ironclad art

Pepin, Wis., blacksmith achieves excellence in ironclad art

In our continuing series about everyday people mastering their craft, this ornamental blacksmith has pounded out a national reputation.
Minnesota crossword puzzle-makers think inside the box

Minnesota crossword puzzle-makers think inside the box

A 10-letter phrase for the home of a large, very successful community of crossword puzzlemakers? Twin Cities.
No. 7: Zach Sobiech, whose song 'Clouds' touched millions around the world, dies

No. 7: Zach Sobiech, whose song 'Clouds' touched millions around the world, dies

A terminally ill Minnesota teenager whose farewell song became a worldwide sensation died Monday morning.
Uff da! New Star Tribune comic strip is Scandinavian to its roots

Uff da! New Star Tribune comic strip is Scandinavian to its roots

A popular comic in Denmark, WuMo is bringing its wacky brand of humor to the Star Tribune.
White-collar punk band defies every stereotype of the genre

White-collar punk band defies every stereotype of the genre

Think of every stereotype that applies to punk rockers, then turn it inside out. The result is a band that boasts white collars and advanced degrees.
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