The trails weren't groomed yet, but that didn't keep the Como Park High School Nordic ski team from getting in some cold-weather training. 
The New World of Recycling is Here
A crew from the appropriately named Cart Placement Services delivers new recycling carts in the alley between Dale and Maywood. Crews are delivering 95,000 carts in Saint Paul.
The wheeled, covered carts have arrived. The blue bins are history. Here's a quick refresher on how the city's new recycling system affects residents in District 10:
  • There is no curbside pickup this Monday, Jan. 16.
  • Collection day in District 10 switches from Mondays to Fridays.
  • Our first collection day using the new carts is next Friday, Jan. 20. Start using the new carts immediately to store stuff you normally would get rid of this Monday. 
  • If you have not received a wheeled cart by the end of the day this Saturday, Jan. 14, call Saint Paul's All In phone line at 651-266-6199 or Eureka Recycling at 651-222-7678. Because our recycling day switches, there's no reason to panic. There's plenty of time to get your cart in time to use next Friday. 
  • For most residents, pickup switches to the alley. However, wherever crews delivered your cart, that is where you should put your recycling. If that location doesn't work, call Eureka to work it out. 
  • Everyone starts with the new, 64-gallon cart. Beginning in April, we'll be able to trade for a smaller cart (32 gallons) or larger cart (96 gallons) to more accurately fit our needs.
  • We now can throw a few more items into the weekly recycling, including the cardboard rolls from paper towels and toilet paper; cardboard food containers; and refrigerated boxes.
What about those blue bins?  We can keep our current bins if we want to and use them for other purposes. If you don't want to keep your bin, Saint Paul is collecting them (and, yes, recycling them) through Jan. 27. You can drop yours off at Arlington Hills Community Center, 1200 Payne Ave., or at Palace Community Center, 781 Palace Ave.
Going Beyond Recycling
Two events this month take on not just recycling, but waste reduction overall.
  • This Thursday, Jan. 19, the Saint Paul Department of Safety and Inspections holds a public discussion on a potential sustainable "to go" packaging ordinance for the city. Such an ordinance would require businesses to provide to-go packaging that is reusable, recyclable, or compostable. The event is 6:30-7:30 p.m. at the Rondo Community Outreach Library, 461 N. Dale.
  • District 10's Environment Committee hosts a free community discussion about waste reduction. Eureka Recycling will get things going with a presentation, answer questions, and provide resources about reducing waste on the front end -- not just about recycling on the back end. But the evening won't ignore recycling: We'll show a video on how recycling works in Saint Paul, and collect initial feedback on the first week of the city's new collection system, (Plus, we'll collect unwanted blue recycling bins that night, too.) If that's not enough of an enticement, we'll also serve food.

The Jan. 25 event begins at 6 p.m. at the Como Park Streetcar Station, which is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton. Food will be served. The Environment Committee's monthly meeting follows. As always, that meeting is open to all community members.  


 

Full Speed Ahead
After a rugged two weeks, the organics recycling drop-off site on Beulah Lane in Como Park is back to normal. Thanks to all of you who were patient with the deplorable conditions that resulted after the private-sector hauler failed to do its job for 18 days. The silver lining? The site now has much more capacity to meet the growing use by residents who are committed to reducing their waste. 
D10 Board Meets Tuesday
The District 10 Como Community Council Board holds its monthly meeting this Tuesday, Jan. 17, at 7 p.m. It looks like a quick meeting; you can read the preliminary agenda online. The meeting is at the Como Park Streetcar Station, which is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton. As always, community members are welcome to attend and participate.

Also, District 10's  office is closed this Monday, Dec. 16, in honor of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday.
The Weather Certainly is Cooperating
It 's PolarPalooza this weekend at Como Zoo, with three days of activities focused on Arctic animals. Seriously, how often do you get to try on a "blubber glove"? If you do, it will truly help you understand how polar creatures endure their frigid conditions. Special activities run this Saturday-Monday, Jan. 14-16; the Zoo is open 10 a.m.-4 p.m. each day.
The Way It's Meant to Be
The ice rink at North Dale Recreation Center will be busier than usual this Saturday, Jan. 14, because the Saint Paul Winter Classic High School Girls Hockey Tournament takes over. Tap into your inner Minnesotan with outdoor hockey (bolstered by refreshments, a bonfire, and what promises to be a stellar January day). Games are 9 a.m. (Northern Lakes v. Rosemount), 11 a.m. (Moorhead v. Red Wing), 1 p.m. (Mankato East v. Robbinsdale), and 3 p.m. (Henry Sibley v. Saint Paul Blades). Spectating is free.
Speaking of Outdoors...
It 's done snowing. We 're supposed to clear sidewalks and crosswalks within 24 hours of the last flake falling. If there 's a stretch that isn 't shoveled, either help out by clearing it yourself -- or call the city 's Department of Safety and Inspections at 651-266-8989 to report it. (Don 't know what to tell you about bus stops -- Metro Transit is not required to keep them clear.)

If you've got a snow plowing complaint, send an email with details to the City of Saint Paul's Public Works department 
Law Puts the Squeeze on Tax Returns
Federal tax refunds will take longer this year for taxpayers eligible for the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) and/or Additional Child Tax Credit (ACTC). A law passed by Congress in 2015 prevents the IRS from processing returns with these credits until Feb.15. That means taxpayers receiving these credits likely won't see refunds deposited into their bank accounts until the week of Feb. 27.

Prepare + Prosper, a local nonprofit that promotes financial independence, reminds taxpayers that no one can speed up their federal refund. It urges taxpayers not to pay someone who promises they can. This includes avoiding tax-preparation conglomerates who will advance taxpayers a portion of their refund early, but charge hefty fees for doing so. These fees mean taxpayers end up with only a fraction of their refund.  
There's Plenty of Time on the Clock
Lyngblomsten launches its new 2nd Half life enrichment center this Monday, Jan. 16, with a free session on volunteerism. The debut is 10-11 a.m. in the lower-level community room, 1415 Almond Ave.  The next event, on Thursday Feb. 9, discusses  " Caring for Your Whole Self. "

2nd Half is designed to provide adults 50 or older with community services, resources, and opportunities to enhance their quality of life. Ongoing topics include education; the arts; health, wellness, and spirituality; and community connections.  Get more information online or by calling 651-414-5293. A free open house on Wednesday March 8 will allow you to sample the range of 2nd Half offerings. 
A Playful Request
Got youth-friendly board games that you no longer use? Put them back in action by donating them to the Twin Cities German Immersion School. The local charter school is creating a game library to help students have fun and improve their social skills. If you can add to the stack, contact the school 's Michelle Wallace by email, or drop them at the school office, 1031 Como Ave.
Sara White performs Jan. 27.
Photo: MPR News
Libraries are for Adults, Too
Fun stuff at the Saint Paul Public Library isn 't just for kids. Here are adult activities lined up this month:
  • Tinker Tuesdays are craft workshops for adults. This Tuesday, Jan. 17, you can create a hardcover, accordion-style, miniature book. The free workshop runs 6-8 p.m. at Highland Park, 1974 Ford Parkway. Registration is required.
  • WinterReads has all kinds of options to support your reading habit, including personalized reading suggestions, book clubs you can join, even a book club starter kit for your own circle of people.
  • Loud at the Library features Sarah White and Eric Mayson in concert at the George Latimer Central Library, 90 W. 4th St. The concert is Friday Jan. 27 at 7:30 p.m.; tickets are $10 ($5 for members of The Friends).
Javiar Matos
Escape the Winter Blues
The Marjorie McNeeley Conservatory's 2017 Music Under Glass series continues this Sunday, Jan. 15, with the slide blues guitar of Javier Matos.  He plays from 4:30-6:30 p.m. Admission is free; you can buy beer, wine, soft drinks, and light snacks. Check out the full season schedule .
Pat Morita and Ralph Macchio are at it again in "Karate Kid II."
Dojo is in Session
Como Dockside's Thursday night movie series continues Jan. 19 with "The Karate Kid II" (rated PG). Trivia begins at 6:15 p.m.; the free movie begins at 6:45 in the third-level banquet hall of the lakeside pavilion. For the full schedule of "almost all the greatest movies" from 30 years ago , see Dockside's online calendar .  

Don't forget: Every Wednesday is "neighborhood night" at Dockside, with happy hour drink and food specials from 3-9 p.m., and classic board games galore. And -- Saturday brunch includes a free Louisiana-flavored concert from noon-2 p.m. This week, Jan. 14, it's the Upper Mississippi Cajun Trio. 
Got an Opinion? Share It
  • This Wednesday, Jan. 18: Public hearing on a proposed zoning change to allow more outdoor commercial uses in traditional neighborhood and business zoning districts, 5:30 p.m. City Council chambers, third floor, 15 W. Kellogg Blvd.
  • This Thursday, Jan. 19: The Department of Safety and Inspections holds a public discussion on a potential ordinance for Saint Paul to regulate "short term rentals" such as Airbnb and VRBO, 7:40-8:45 p.m. Rondo Community Outreach Library, 461 N. Dale.
  • Tuesday Jan. 24: Ramsey County holds a public hearing on waste designation for 2018, 9 a.m. 3rd floor council chambers, City Hall, 15 Kellogg Blvd. W ("Waste designation" determines where trash goes after it is picked up from your home, business, or a transfer station.)
  • Thursday Jan. 26: Information meeting about 2017 reconstruction of Wheelock Parkway, 6-7:30 p.m. North Dale Recreation Center, 1414 N. St. Albans.
  • Friday Jan. 27: Deadline to apply for YouthBank Saint Paul project grants, which support social justice projects led by teens and young adults ages 14-21.
  • Sunday Jan. 29: Last day to comment on nine initial themes in the City of Saint Paul's upcoming Comprehensive Plan.
Don't Do It!
In cold weather, we all want a warm car. But that's never an excuse to leave your vehicle running if you're not sitting inside it.  Police can't say it often enough: It takes only seconds for someone to jump in and drive off -- or swipe valuables -- while you helplessly stand by. Don't make it easy for car thieves. 
 
This Week at the Fairgrounds
  • Prime Promotions Antique Show: This Saturday-Sunday, Jan. 14-15, Warner Coliseum. Hours: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday. Admission: $6
  • Also, the Winter Carnival Snow Sculpting Event is making snow in the Kidway lot (south of Wright Ave. between Underwood and Cooper). Some nearby streets are blocked off.
Spread the Word
District 10 is one of Saint Paul's 17 citizen participation districts. The District 10 Como Community Council is a nonprofit organization, governed by a Board of Directors who are elected by members of the community. The Council's mission is to inform, educate, and connect the neighborhood to increase community pride and confidence. 

You are receiving this email because you expressed interest in District 10 activities.