What’s making news in Minneapolis, reported by the Star Tribune’s team of city reporters. Send news tips to suzanne.ziegler@startribune.com.

Wednesday roundup: Historic election, logging at Wirth Park, gang trial

Posted by: James Eli Shiffer under Local business, Parks and recreation, People and neighborhoods, Politics and government, Public safety Updated: January 11, 2012 - 10:12 AM
Susan Allen (photo by Renee Jones Schneider)

Susan Allen (photo by Renee Jones Schneider)

Susan Allen made history when south Minneapoils voters elected her to the state Legislature on Tuesday - she's the first female American Indian lawmaker in Minnesota, Eric Roper reports. The DFLer won despite a spirited challenge from "Respect" candidate Nathan Blumenshine, who won 43 percent of the vote to Allen's 54 percent in a heavily Democratic district. DFLer Kari Dziedzic won a more lopsided victory over Republican Ben Schwanke to become a state Senator in the seat last held by Larry Pogemiller.

Salvage logging and cleanup of the tornado-ravaged woods at Theodore Wirth Park last weekend have turned a swath of the park into a brown moonscape, I noticed while driving through last week, and Tom Meersman reports how some people think the park board went too far in getting the wood out.

Admitted gang member Troy Neuberger testified that he torched a house for the insurance money and beat up a drug dealer, but said he refused his boss's order to murder a suspected snitch because "I ain't a killer," Abby Simons reports from the trial of alleged Beat Down Posse leader Joseph Robert "Big Joe" Gustafson.

The stadium scramble continues, with the Vikings claiming rebuilding on the Metrodome site will cost more than the city thinks, and the Basilica of St. Mary fretting about whether a nearby colosseum will shake the old church to its foundations, Mike Kaszuba reports. Then there's another contender beckoning from up the Minnesota River, with Shakopee planning a news conference this afternoon to announce its bid.

The cost of transactions means that Hennepin County no longer takes Visa at its service centers, but feel free to put your county charges on your Mastercard and Discover, Kevin Duchschere reports.

The entertainment giant AEG is building a mega-club called Brick in the Warehouse District, hoping that big name acts will get  2,100 people to squeeze into the space once occupied by Club 3 Degrees, Chris Riemenschneider reports. That place was once the country's largest Christian nightclub, well known for serving pancakes and eggs to revelers after bar close.

 

  

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