June 2017 St. Louis Park Magazine

In the June issue meet local baker Brandie Itman.

These men, dear readers, are Allen’s Rocking Chairs, stars of Minneapolis’s huge indoor polo craze of the 1930s. That giant Roller Garden skating rink on Lake Street was built in 1930 as the Pastime Arena, dedicated to boarding, riding, and training horses.

 

Necessity, they say, is the mother of invention. For Brandie Itman, necessity was the spark that led to her kosher custom bakery business, Bella Nava Creations.

 

In the spirit of Pride Month, Golden Valley will be hosting its second annual Pride Festival on June 11 at Brookview Park.

 

It’s raining in St. Louis Park, and on Hestia Abeyesekera’s front porch, a cat with luxuriant fur strides across the keys of an upright piano. I sit down to play it. Of the five pianos in the house, Hestia’s students prefer this one.

 

A brochure on racial equity produced by the city of St. Louis Park presents two circle graphs of the city’s overall and school populations by race. Some 20 percent of the overall population and more than 40 percent of school children are people of color.

 

It’s not hard to see St. Louis Park author Margie Zats in Alexandra, the main character in her debut novel, Alexandra the Grate: Who Insisted Life Be Well Done.

 

As summer kicks into high gear, St. Louis Park celebrates with its annual Parktacular Festival, bringing a string of event-filled days and nights to the community.

 

You have to get up early to cross paths with STEP volunteers Ephie and Clement Volpe, whose shift starts at 8 a.m. at the St. Louis Park community food shelf. They come to work every Thursday morning, generally staying for 3 to 3-1/2 hours.

 

He started small, as a fifth-grade teacher and coach in the tiny town of Elmore in 1981. From then until now, Rob Metz has worked at schools across Minnesota as both a teacher and principal for elementary and high school, eventually winding up in the role of superintendent for St.

 

With the rise of shows like Game of Thrones to last year’s explosion of Pokémon Go, it’s clear that geek culture is officially cool. Dedicated gamers are stepping out into the open, and newbies are joining in the fun, too.

 

The Needle Doctor was just a twinkle in Jerry Raskin’s eye when he was selling blank cassette tapes out of his backpack as a student at the University of Minnesota.

 

Before wife-husband duo Jen and Andrew Fleury decided to open their own Board & Brush studio in January, neither had much experience with woodworking—or teaching, for that matter.

 

Down in the Valley and Mill City Sound are two vastly different record stores, but both are benefiting from the resurgence in vinyl LP’s being fueled by the next generation of music lovers.