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Curious Minnesota
May 13
How the heck did Minnesota end up with a state muffin?

How the heck did Minnesota end up with a state muffin?

Students at a northern Minnesota elementary school received a civics lesson they'll never forget.
Curious Minnesota
May 6
A prisoner inspects license plates produced at Rush City correctional facility north of the Twin Cities.

Why does Minnesota require new license plates every seven years?

Regularly replacing license plates is a hassle for drivers that dates back more than three decades.
Curious Minnesota
May 5
Electrical transmission lines in Lilydale Regional Park in St. Paul.

Listen: The hidden electrical system that keeps our lights on

Reporter Mike Hughlett joins the Curious Minnesota podcast to discuss where Minnesota's electricity originates, and how it gets to homes.
Curious Minnesota
May 5
A shrine to St. Cloud, the patron saint of the Diocese of St. Cloud, inside St. Mary’s Cathedral in downtown St. Cloud. The statue is a replica of t

Listen: How an inside joke led to St. Cloud getting its name

Reporter Jenny Berg joins the Curious Minnesota podcast to share the tale behind St. Cloud's moniker.
Curious Minnesota
April 29
A painting of Dred Scott by artist Louis Schultze, based on an 1857 photograph.

What is Minnesota's connection to the historic Dred Scott decision?

The U.S. Supreme Court case that laid the groundwork for the Civil War traces its roots to the frontier area that became Minnesota.
Curious Minnesota
April 23
A group at the 2020 grand opening of The Coven, a St. Paul co-working space geared toward women.

Why is Minnesota a national leader in its share of women who work?

Minnesota has ranked among the top 10 in women's workforce participation for many years.
Curious Minnesota
April 21
Frances McDormand as Marge Gunderson in the film ‘Fargo’

Listen: Why do Minnesotans have accents?

The Curious Minnesota podcast delves into the accent's origins and what defines this uniquely Minnesotan way of speaking.
Curious Minnesota
April 15
Supporters of a California ballot initiative related to rent control held a San Francisco rally in 2018. The measure was not successful.

Why can't Minnesotans bypass the Legislature to change state laws?

Several past attempts to allow citizen initiatives in Minnesota have failed at the ballot box.
Curious Minnesota
April 8
Why are there so many stucco homes in the Twin Cities?

Why are there so many stucco homes in the Twin Cities?

The region's "love for stucco" is unique in the Midwest.
Curious Minnesota
April 1
Corry Whitaker shows the before and after of a stainless steel piece of an industrial power sprayer. ] GLEN STUBBE • glen.stubbe@startribune.com Thu

What are Minnesota's most exported products?

From snowmobiles to Scotch tape, companies ship an eclectic mix of locally made products to other countries.
Curious Minnesota
March 25
A worker tends to the Mighty Kimball organ at the Minneapolis Auditorium in 1962.

What happened to Minneapolis' famous 'Mighty Kimball' organ?

One of the largest pipe organs ever produced in the U.S. fell silent when the Minneapolis Auditorium was demolished in the 1980s.
Curious Minnesota
March 24
Workers load sacks of flour onto rail cars, likely around the turn of the century.

Listen: Why did Minneapolis' famous flour boom go bust?

The Curious Minnesota podcast explores how Minneapolis became a flour milling capital and why it didn't last.
Curious Minnesota
March 24
A Ramsey County sheriff’s deputy, armed with a submachine gun, escorts members of the Barker-Karpis gang to court in 1935.

Listen: Did St. Paul really protect gangsters during the Prohibition era?

The Curious Minnesota podcast explores an unusual historical agreement between criminals and St. Paul police.
Curious Minnesota
March 18
Minnesota National Guard Staff Sgt. Michael Walker carries a 150-pound human dummy while participating in the stress shoot during the Region IV Best W

What's the story behind Minnesota's military training ground, Camp Ripley?

For nearly a century, soldiers have prepared for war at a sprawling facility in central Minnesota.
Curious Minnesota
March 11
The Red River of the North empties into the Netley-Libau Marsh at the southern end of Lake Winnipeg in 2016.

Does water really only flow out of Minnesota — not into it?

A rare intersection of North America's continental divides on the Iron Range has a big impact on the flow of water in the region.
Curious Minnesota
March 10
A family tours the Round Tower in June 2021.

Listen: The stories behind Minnesota's oldest building and the Northwest Angle

The Curious Minnesota podcast talks with reporter Katy Read about listeners' favorite questions from the State Fair.
Curious Minnesota
March 4
Todd Geselius, vice president of agriculture at the Southern Minnesota Beet Sugar Co-op, showed in 2015 what a sugar beet looks like when it is harves

Is Minnesota really one of the nation's top sugar producers?

Americans consume sugar from beets every day, whether they realize it or not. And Minnesota farmers produce a lot of it.
Curious Minnesota
February 25
Rabbi Gershon Grossbaum readied the menorah before the start of the 2020 Drive-in Chanukah Spectacular at the St. Louis Park Lunds & Byerlys.

Why did so many Jewish people move to St. Louis Park decades ago?

The western suburb is famously associated with Minnesota's Jewish population, which built a sizable community there in the latter half of the 20th century.
Curious Minnesota
February 18
Electric cars and truck owners don’t pay gas taxes but do contribute to road upkeep in other ways. Some think the state’s policies need to change.

Will electric vehicles pay their fair share for Minnesota's road costs?

Electric cars and truck owners don't pay gas taxes but do contribute to road upkeep in other ways. Some think the state's policies need to change.
Curious Minnesota
February 11
The sun sets on Eddy Lake in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness in July 2021.

Why is the BWCA a wilderness and not a national park?

The area's history as a hub of industry and recreation led to unique protections and management for the Boundary Waters — and a national park next door.
Curious Minnesota
February 10
People walking in front of a destroyed school building after the fires of 1918.

Listen: Historic wildfires once destroyed part of Minnesota. Could it happen again?

The Curious Minnesota podcast talks with Jana Hollingsworth about the tragic fires of 1894 and 1918.
Curious Minnesota
February 10
The refurbished Jolly Green Giant billboard greets drivers along Highway 169 in Le Sueur.

Listen: The Jolly Green Giant has left Minnesota. So who is maintaining his iconic billboard?

The Curious Minnesota podcast talks with Brooks Johnson about the history of the Green Giant brand and who is keeping its legacy alive.
Curious Minnesota
February 4
A modern painting of the First Minnesota regiment at the Battle of Gettysburg by artist Don Troiani.

Why isn't Minnesota's sacrifice at Gettysburg better remembered?

Dozens of Minnesota soldiers charged to their deaths in one of the Civil War's most important battles, helping deliver a victory for the Union Army.
Curious Minnesota
January 28
What was life like in Minnesota during the flu pandemic of 1918?

What was life like in Minnesota during the flu pandemic of 1918?

The deadly event a century ago — amid a world war and historic wildfires — is a stark reminder that things today could be worse.
Curious Minnesota
January 27
Professor Anton Treuer

Listen: Which Indigenous tribes first called Minnesota home?

The Curious Minnesota podcast talks with professor Anton Treuer about the ancient human history of Minnesota.