The Big IDEA
With rumors of Hennepin County considering using some of the surplus from the Target Field sales tax to assist with the proposed new Soccer Park on Royalston near the Minneapolis Farmers Market, perhaps it is time to peel back the curtain and shed light on stadium funding and management generally. Like the rest of the interested public we presume no deal is announced because no deal has been arranged. We know there is land to be assembled and infrastructure to be, well, structured to connect the soccer facility to the street grid, LRT and hopefully the HERC (aka Old Smokey, the happy garbage burner). It is public policy to connect the many underused public assets to potential development, ideally bringing the energy from the North Loop across / along Glenwood Avenue and into near North Minneapolis.
Coincidentally, across the street from the Government Center, leaders in Minneapolis City Hall are moving towards putting another, much-needed $24 million into the Target Center renovation. Wouldn’t it be nice if the City and the County could press pause and figure out how to manage these two efforts together? The City turns over title to Target Center, along with funds pledged previously, to the Ballpark Authority. The County would ask the Legislature for permission to extend the purpose of the 0.15% sales tax for soccer and Target Center, while keeping the amount of tax and retirement date in place. Joint management of publicly-controlled facilities, with tenants comprised of jointly owned sports teams. The “big idea” might be what everybody, including the so-far-reluctant state legislative leadership, needs to buy in to “one more stadium.”
There was a veritable who’s who of the Minneapolis advertising luminaries at the BANK in the Westin Hotel to wish long-time Campbell Mithun exec Jim Romlin a long, healthy and fruitful journey as he ends more than 35 years with the venerable firm. Over his remarkable career at that agency, Mr. Romlin has overseen the media planning and buying strategies for the firm’s biggest clients. Across the years he has touched the lives of most everybody who works in the media side of the business in this market, as a colleague who leads by example and as a mentor who takes the time to teach. Jim has been a proud and staunch member of the Campbell Mithun team, not out of blind loyalty but out of respect for the weight of the institution and what that means about value for the firm’s clients. The advertising business is certainly in a great deal of flux and there is a great deal of “making it up as you go” in terms of the worldwide web. There is much to be said about tried and true. Jim Romlin knows how to sell your brats, lawn mowers and luxury cars, and folks, it ain’t on Facebook. We wish Jim only the very best, knowing he is far from putting his talents away. The dabblers who are running his old agency now have decided to drop the Campbell portion of the wonderful C-M brand. For their sake we hope they recognize that leaning on institution gravitas is indeed the only way to fly.
ROUND the LOOP
We will never quite shake our love for the Minneapolis Downtown Core and the vibrant skyways that connect it, but the energy of the North Loop is certainly contagious. Beginning this installment Online is going to begin a new feature, Round the Loop. This issue we welcome Atmosfere, a clothing store featuring both new and now threads for the young at heart and some old-timey style suits and sports coats for the old fellas who still feel naked without them during the business day. Located in the garden level of the Else Warehouse (730 North Washington), this is the sibling of the flagship in Minneapolis Uptown. Long-time clothiers Dan Dapetz and his son Damon are adding very interesting and unique women’s lines in addition to their popular men’s selections. Take a warning from us. Have a beer at the Freehouse after you stop in. You won’t need much prodding to shop; you’ll need self-control to stop.
BULLETINS and BYTES…
The joys of this fair Metro are not only found in the North Loop. When exploring new adventures in the visual arts we are often drawn to the exhibitions at 2001 A Space Gallery owned and operated by two of Minnesota’s great curators, Kathleen Sullivan and Dean Hawthorne. This month they are featuring the most recent works of Nina Holiday-Lynch and LaVonne Mountain. Both artists are known for their passionate use of color in still life and more abstract pieces, hence the title of the show, “Images of Color & Change.” The show opens with a public reception on April 10 (6-9 PM). The gallery is located at 2001 5th Avenue NE, just two blocks east of Jax Café.