Reclaiming Thanksgiving, Minnesota River booty, Bachmann: Bush embraced socialism

Former deacon steps down amid abuse allegations

Michael W. Weber has resigned from the board of directors at the Greater Twin Cities United Way in the wake of allegations of sexual misconduct more than 40 years ago (Saint Cloud Times).

Xcel agrees to a smaller rate hike for Minnesota

The settlement, which requires regulatory approval, gives Xcel nearly two-thirds less than the $198 million it sought a year ago. Residential customers would see a 2.8 percent hike and commercial and industrial customers a 2.7 percent hike over two years (Star Tribune).

Mayo study links smoking ban to drop in heart attacks

A new study shows the incidence of heart attack and sudden cardiac death was roughly cut in half among residents of Minnesotas Olmsted County after smoke-free ordinances took effect in workplaces over the past decade (Pioneer Press).

Some Target employees bristle over Black Friday hours

Employee Anthony Hardwick said Target’s planned midnight opening on Black Friday will ruin many employees’ Thanksgiving Day celebrations. So far, nearly 60,000 people have signed to Hardwick’s petition on the change.org website. Hardwick said a later opening would help restore the sanctity of Thanksgiving (MPR News).

Best Buy revealing its Black Friday deals early

Traditional method of keeping everything secret until Turkey Day is being abandoned as big retailers jockey for position (Star Tribune).

House bills would roll back new labor rules

The US House of Representatives will soon take up legislation that would roll back new rules issued by the National Labor Relations Board (MPR News).

OccupyMN will sleep in plaza in defiance of county rule

OccupyMN protestors said they’ll sleep in defiance of new rules Monday evening in Government Plaza, downtown Minneapolis (MPR News).

Duluth police chief: Occupy protesters need permit

Overnight camping in front of Duluth City Hall may be ending soon. Police Chief Gordon Ramsay said Monday the group will need to get a permit to allow it to stay on the plaza. But the makeup of the camp will change. The group will be allowed just one “warming tent,” Ramsay said, and no overnight camping (Duluth News Tribune).

Target Foundation & Corporation tops the list of Minnesota grantmakers, donating $131 million to charities and nonprofits across the nation in 2010. Rounding out the five biggest spenders were: the McKnight Foundation ($97 million), General Mills Foundation & Corporation ($88 million), Greater Twin Cities United Way ($66 million) and Cargill Corporation & the Cargill Foundation ($61 million) (Star Tribune).

Bachmann memoir assails Bush’s embrace of ‘socialism’

A new memoir to be published later this month by Republican presidential candidate Michele Bachmann faults President George W. Bush for having come to embrace, late in his second term in the White House, “a kind of ‘bailout socialism'” (Fox News).

Dogs shot dead on St. Louis County hunting land

It was too dark to search for the dogs that leapt out of her pickup them Saturday. Shannon Hautala said she called their names, Makita and Devaki, and heard gunshots shortly after the dogs ran (Duluth News Tribune).

Couple to scour Minnesota River for steamboat wrecks

Next summer husband and wife team Ann Merriman and Chris Olson will begin surveying what may seem a less likely maritime route — the Minnesota River.”On the Minnesota, there were many reports of sunk or snagged (steamboats), five or six at least,” Merriman said. “How much is left of them, no one knows” (Mankato Free Press).

St. Augusta ballroom demolished

Workers demolished Cedar Point Ballroom on Monday, but the memories of those who attended the family celebrations and dances for which it was famous are lasting.”It’s kind of bittersweet. It did have a lot of memories because we met there,” said Joan Kiffmeyer, who met her husband, Richard, at a dance when she was 18 (Saint Cloud Times).

U boosts effort to woo out-of-state students

While out-of-state recruitment aims for diversity, cuts created a need for the tuition dollars (MN Daily).

Community colleges’ popularity on rise

From fall 2010 to 2011, there was a jump from 400 students with declared associate in arts degree majors to 1,200 at St. Cloud Technical & Community College (Saint Cloud Times).

Minn. native Jim Burke produces The Descendants

As the premise suggests, King’s odyssey is one of somber reflection; but despite the pervasiveness of disheartening familial drama, producer Jim Burke, a Minnesota native, insists that this film is not a downer (AV Club).

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