SNO News is Good News

January/February 2000

sno news masthead
sno news masthead

Editor: Kristine Harley

Layout: Richard Gunderson

Writers: John Akre
Melissa Davis
Dora Harris
Andy Nederveld
Drew Trampe

Back to SNO Info!


As I'm writing this, the year 2000 is still weeks away. And I believe that, with all the hoopla about the global speedometer roll from 99 to 00, not enough attention has been paid to the change in the first two digits of the year. With Y2K likely to be more fizzle than furor, the real trial in the next millennium will be trying to get used to a year that starts with 20 instead of 19. I mean, how can a year start with a two? I shudder to think of all the wastebaskets full of voided checks that were ripped irritably out of checkbooks with the numbers "19-"written on them by the same people (especially me) who cannot remember to write the new year correctly until well into March.

At any rate, I am writing this commentary in all confidence that after January 1, 2000 the world will remain pretty much as we left it, and that all will be well with the residents of Sheridan. And with the arrival of a New Year and a New Millennium comes SNO News, a new community newsletter.

Simultaneously drawing upon and parodying old words of wisdom for its title, it will be delivered to Sheridan's residents and area businesses every two months.

SNO News invites submissions from all of its readers. Articles, suggestions for articles, letters, poems and artwork (especially from students), calendar items, news tips, City Council updates, memoirs (what happened in Sheridan 10, 25, 50 years ago?), personal achievements (your kid won an essay contest, Grandpa will play an angel in the upcoming Easter pageant, etc.), special announcements-we want to receive them!

Keep the items to 100 words, give or take. Submissions can be typed or hand-printed, and mailed to the SNO Office or e-mailed to the editor at (Kristine Harley). Please write "SNO News Submission" on the outside of the envelope, or insert this into the subject line if you are e-mailing. Include your full name, address, and a phone number on all submissions. No anonymous contributions, please.

Submissions are subject to editing for clarity and space, but we will make every effort to include each contributor. The deadline for the March/April issue is February 15, 2000.

Thanks to all for helping to make SNO News good news for the Sheridan Neighborhood!

-The Editor


Sheridan NRP Housing Funds

Many people in Sheridan know about the Sheridan NRP "Deferred Loan Program," the NRP housing funds that were distributed through a lottery. But there are additional NRP housing funds available through these other programs. You did not need to participate in the lottery to apply for these funds.

For more information on these programs, contact the Northeast Housing Resource Center at 378-7985. The Center's hours are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on the second Saturday of the month.

1. DuCon: Duplex Conversion Program. This is a one to one match fund to help homeowners convert their duplex into a single family home. This is a deferred loan program, and does not have to be repaid if the owner lives in the house six years after the loan is made.

2. Duplex Purchaser Deferred Loan. This program provides up to $3,500 to assist in the purchase of a uplex. The loan does not have to be repaid if the owner lives in the duplex six years after the loan.

3. Revolving Loan Funds. There are also revolving loan funds for owner occupants and absentee owners that finance both exterior and interior improvements. The rate for these loans is 4%.


Pierre Bottineau Library

Libraries in Minneapolis have found homes in many places over the years, from the Victorian castle of the old Central Library, to the subterranean Walker Library in Uptown, to the Bookmobile, a library on wheels. But there's only one library in a storefront, and that's the branch in the Sheridan Neighborhood, the branch named after Pierre Bottineau, the trapper who once owned much of Northeast.

The Pierre Bottineau Branch grew out of two small libraries, one in the Logan Park building and one in Sheridan School. In 1957, the Library Board rented a narrow storefront near the intersection of 2nd Street and 13th Avenue NE for a new library, and has been renting it ever since.

Today the branch serves people of all ages but it was originally called a "children's library." Today it is the only library in the Minneapolis system that circulates more books to children than to adults. New computers paid for with Neighborhood Revitalization Program funds from the Sheridan and Saint Anthony West neighborhoods also attract kids.

One of these kids is Mitzi, age 12. She visits the library when she's with her friends who live in the neighborhood, and says she likes Bottineau better than the library in her neighborhood because it has Internet access. Mitzi's friend Amanda (age 10) comes weekly, and has been for as long as she can remember. Nicole (age 10) likes it better than the library downtown because it isn't so busy.

The branch is too small to get too busy, but it is one of only two branches to see circulation increases in the last two years. Community Librarian Gloria Busch said that NRP-funded computers, videos and talking books have brought new faces to Bottineau.

The library attracts a devoted following of mystery readers of all ages, Busch said. Many patrons also come in to use the catalog and order materials from other branches. Every day the branch gets one or two boxes of books from other libraries in the system.

Schools also make use of the library, particularly the Bottineau Early Education Center around the corner. But the library does have limited space for groups. According to Busch, they can handle the students from Bottineau pretty well, but when the older and bigger students from Holland come, the library can seem a lot more crowded.

In September of 1997, the Pierre Bottineau Library celebrated its 40th Anniversary and the first of its NRP-funded computers. At that time, a Citizens Advisory Board was actively looking for new locations for the library, or ways for it to grow.

A new location for the branch has not been found, and the future of the branch is tenuous, according to Library Board President Diane Hofstede. She said that a library branch could make a community stronger, but that she also remembers that cutting the Bottineau branch has been an agenda item at Library Board meetings in the past. Hofstede said that it is important for community members to use the library and to let elected officials, like the mayor and city council, know how important the branch is.

Community members have a chance to voice their opinion on the future of the Pierre Bottineau library and other libraries in Minneapolis at a series of meetings. The first of these will be held on Monday, January 24th at 7 p.m. at the Northeast branch on Central Ave. The second will be at the North Regional Library on Lowry at 7 p.m. on Tuesday the 25th.

Pierre Bottineau Library facts (1998; Source: Minneapolis Public Library):

Circulation: 25,985 materials checked out: 55% juvenile/45% adult

Information services: 10,303 questions answered

Collection: 9.550 books, 1,000 audio-visual items

Size: 2,044 square feet, no meeting room

Hours: Monday and Tuesday: 12:30 - 8 p.m.

Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday: 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.

Phone number: 630-6890

Web site:


PPL to Help SNO Renovate Vacant Housing

The Housing and Safety Committee is pleased to report that Project for Pride in Living (PPL) has proposed a partnership with SNO to acquire and renovate vacant housing in Sheridan. PPL has been active in Minneapolis for over 25 years during which time it has driven the construction and renovation of

Over 1000 residential units. As an official Community Housing Development Organization, PPL can leverage Federal funds not otherwise available to our neighborhood. A representative from PPL will present further details during the monthly SNO meeting on January 24th. (As of this printing, the date

And time of the meeting has not been set. Please call the SNO Office after

January 3 for this information.)


Back to top

Block Leader Reception to be Held

Attention block-club leaders and supporters: The Housing and Safety Committee will be hosting a reception for block-club volunteers in early February. We will discuss the role of block clubs in Sheridan, and seek to better understand how SNO can support their efforts. A representative from CCP/SAFE will be joining us and, of course, there will be plenty of treats! If you have participated in block-club leader training in the past, watch your mailbox for a personal invitation. If you would like to learn more, call

The SNO office at 379-0728 and a member of the H&S Committee will return your call.


208 13th Avenue NE Property

At the November 30th SNO meeting, MCDA representative Judy Cedar brought before the board a purchase proposal for the empty lot at 208 13th Avenue NE. In 1993, MCDA bought the vacant, boarded and condemned property for $25,500. The house was razed and the lot has sat vacant ever since. Bob

Soorg, the owner of Two 12 Pottery, has submitted a $22,000 purchase proposal to MCDA for the 10,895 sq. ft. lot. The commercially zoned property has been appraised at $22,000.

Cedar explained that normally MCDA would advertise commercially zoned lots for development by posting a Request for Proposals. This was not done for this property because the lot size is considered too small for typical commercial development. MCDA was willing to consider Soorg's purchase proposal because the offer matched the appraisal price.

Soorg proposes to buy the lot on the contingency that it would be used for weekend art fairs over the next two years. After two years, he would consider expanding the existing building at 212 13th Avenue, extending it into the adjacent lot.

After hearing discussion by Cedar, Soorg, residents and other business owners, the SNO board voted to have MCDA request proposals for development to see if other businesses would be interested in developing the lot. If no other proposals materialize, the Board would approve of Soorg's proposal. Cedar will present the Request for Proposals at the January 24th board meeting.


Back to top

The Winter Wonder Awards Program Calls for Nominations

The Neighborhood Environment Committee, a sub-committee of the Committee on Urban Environment (CUE) and the same people who bring you the Blooming Boulevards Program, announces the 4th Annual Winter Wonder Awards!

The Winter Wonder Awards are held each year to honor Minneapolis residents who have created nnovative snow or ice sculpture in their yards, planted a winter garden, or initiated any wintertime project that brings color and life to the winter urban landscape. These awards are designed to recognize non-holiday decorations. The NEC believes that these projects deserve recognition because they not only celebrate our winter season, but enhance our neighborhoods as well.

Please feel free to nominate yourself, a neighbor, or any winter artisan. Please send the person's name, address, and a brief description of the project with a photo, if possible. Mail nominations to:

Winter Wonder Awards-attn: Kristine Harley Minneapolis Planning Department
Room 210 City Hall
350 S. 5th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55415

Judging will be done as nominations come in. The deadline for nominations is March 24, 2000. Awards will be presented at the Minneapolis Blooms! Day Celebration held in the spring. For more information about CUE, please leave a message on the CUE Line at 673-3014.


Belly Dancers in Our Midst!

Unbeknownst to many, there are residents of the Sheridan Neighborhood who are belly dance enthusiasts. By day, these women appear as mild-mannered workers, mothers, and neighbors, but at night they shed their "Nordeast" image and step beyond the boundaries of time and space to perform one of the most ancient and lovely of art forms, Egyptian Raqs Sharqi (pronounced "rocks SHARK-ee"), or "belly dance." Derived from the traditional folk dances of the Middle East, Raqs Sharqi is fun entertainment for the whole family, and can be enjoyed for free at the monthly Oriental Dance Guild Festivals:

January 12, 2000 at 9:00 p.m. at the Cassandra Studio,
1940 Hennepin Avenue
February 2, 2000 at 9:00 p.m. at the Cassandra Studio,
1940 Hennepin Avenue
(A free-will donation is requested at each festival.)


Although the Guild Festivals are held outside of the neighborhood, plans are afoot (or ahip, as the case may be) to bring this beautiful and mystical dance to the Sheridan Neighborhood later this year for a public performance, an information session, and possibly free lessons for both men and women. (Yes, men too can belly dance-they're often better than the women!) Look for further details in subsequent issues of the Northeaster and in SNO News.


planting the garden at Mayslack's

Blooming Boulevards

The 1999 Blooming Boulevards Awards have been announced, and among the winners are seven Sheridan residents. They are:

Northeast Bank...................77 N.E. Broadway......................First Place/ Exceptional

Doroschak Dental................230 N.E. Broadway....................Garden of Merit

Lourdes G. Olson................1507 University Avenue N.E........Garden of Merit

Mayslack's Polka Lounge.....1428 N.E. 4th Street..................Certificate of Appreciation

Merrill L. Kempfert................146 14th Avenue NE..................Garden of Merit

Thomas A. Marvin.................149 14th Avenue NE..................Garden of Merit

Emmy Rasmussen...............348 16th Avenue NE..................Certificate of Appreciation

James E. Stenstrom...........1503 Grand Street NE.................Garden of Merit

Congratulations, winners!


The Blooming Boulevards Awards is a program through the Neighborhood Environment Committee of CUE to encourage boulevard, front, side, and alley yard plantings. Anyone can participate in the Blooming Boulevard Program. Gardeners can nominate themselves, a neighbor, or a business. Gardens must conform to regulations as spelled out in the Blooming Boulevards brochure.

The award categories are:

top prize--First Place/Exceptional

first place--First Place

second place--Garden of Merit

third place--Certificate of Appreciation

Nominations are accepted each year through July. For more information on the 2000 Blooming Boulevards Award Program, or to receive a Blooming Boulevards brochure, leave a name and address on the CUE Line at 673-3014.



Back to top

Sheridan Neighborhood Organization forms Joint Powers Agreement

Sheridan Neighborhood Organization (SNO) is joining together with Saint Anthony West Neighborhood Organization (STAWNO) and Bottineau Neighborhood Association (BNA) to form a tri-neighborhood community development organization. The non-profit organization is named Mississippi Eastside Neighborhood Development Corporation (MEND, Inc.).

MEND was created in order to extend neighborhood revitalization efforts beyond the geographic boundaries of each individual neighborhood. The organization will benefit from the combined expertise, knowledge, and planning skills of individual neighborhood representatives. MEND will focus on implementing the collective community development vision of its member neighborhoods. By combining to represent a larger population, MEND aims to increase the probability of securing funding for community development projects that will improve our Northeast community.

On October 30th, board members from STAWNO, BNA and SNO met to define the collective community development vision for the three neighborhoods. Some project examples include participation in Upper Mississippi River Planning,softening major thoroughfare roadways (such as University, Broadway, Marshall, and Lowry) to improve safety and promote our neighborhood pride, improving 13th Avenue, involvement in upcoming development projects including the Bottineau Public Library, the Grain Belt

Brewery, parks and open spaces. STAWNO chair Michael Rainville, BNA chair Jennifer Young, and SNO chair Maureen Rath enthusiastically signed the Joint Powers Agreement at this meeting.

The MEND board of directors plans to meet monthly. The next meeting, held in January 2000, will focus on writing articles of incorporation and operating by-laws for MEND.



sno ball ad

Let It SNOw!

The Sheridan Neighborhood Organization will hold a fancy-dress fund-raiser, the SNO Ball, on Saturday, Feb. 19, from 7 p.m. to Midnight, at Mayslack's Polka Lounge. Tickets cost $10 ($6 for seniors) and can be purchased at Madame Dora's, the Modern Café, I-Ware, or by calling Trish at 379-4743. The money raised will help finance SNO activities. Come one, come all for a good time!


Sheridan Oral History

The Sheridan Neighborhood is a treasure-trove of unique immigrant architecture and working class history. SNO therefore announces the inception of its Sheridan Oral Histories Project. Much more than "official" history, oral history values the small details in the lives of common folk, the knowledge, and the simple values that shaped Northeast Anyone interested in contributing stories should contact John Akre at the SNO Line.

Back to top