Tour of North Shore gems

Edwin Lundie cabins seem to embody the simple joys of summer with their cheerful Scandinavian folk style. The St. Paul architect designed Lutsen Lodge and 14 cabins and summer homes along an 80-mile stretch of the North Shore in the 1940s and '50s. One of those — the 1,600-square-foot Olson cabin, completed in the early 1950s and named after the original owner — will be on the Schroeder Lundie/Vacation Home Tour on July 7. The tour will also include notable area vacation homes. Registration for the tour is at Cross River Heritage Center in Schroeder, Minn., from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on July 7. Introductions and bus loading starts at 1 p.m. and the tour ends around 5:30 p.m. A picnic at the Olson cabin follows the tour and ends at 7 p.m. Reserve a spot by making a $150 donation to the Schroeder Area Historical Society. Details and more information at

Kerri Westenberg

Big Sur's Hwy. 1 to open

The entire coastal stretch of California's iconic Hwy. 1 will reopen at the end of July, restoring a beloved but fragile route from San Francisco to Los Angeles that has been closed for more than a year, the California Department of Transportation recently announced. Part of the highway was closed after rains triggered a massive landslide in May 2017. The completion date, previously set for mid-September, has been moved forward due to contractor efficiencies and favorable weather. The breathtaking coastal region has been accessible only from the north and east. The closing has prevented vacationers from making the full drive along the world-renowned coast. A final update will be announced by early July. After the highway opens, construction will require intermittent weekday lane closings for several months.

Mercury News

Slave cemeteries preserved

Shell Oil Co. is taking steps to honor slaves buried on its land near New Orleans, in an area where sugar plantations once abounded. The company marked, blocked off and spruced up the tracts near its refinery in Convent, La., west of New Orleans, and held dedication ceremonies in March, about five years after archaeologists confirmed the presence of slave burial grounds. The company has been working with the nearby River Road African-American Museum to arrange commemorative events and accommodate visitors. For Kathe Hambrick, director of the River Road museum, the work is the culmination of years of efforts to ensure that Shell honored and remembered those buried on what used to be the Monroe and Bruslie sugar plantations, just two of many plantations that once operated along the road.

Associated Press

Congo park closed

After a park ranger was killed and a driver and two tourists kidnapped (released two days later), Virunga National Park — the first national park in Africa, established in 1925 — will be closed to tourists until 2019. Virunga has been considered a conservation success story: At the end of May, the World Wildlife Fund announced that the number of critically endangered mountain gorillas around the world exceeded 1,000 for the first time in years, setting a record, thanks in large part to Virunga. As the number of gorillas rose, so did the number of tourists. The park has received 17,000 visitors since 2014, despite the fact that a one-day gorilla trek costs $400 per person.

New York Times