Beak demand:  Niles Fellow photographed this green heron near Como lake.
Making Time for Parking and Drinking
District 10's Land Use Committee has two big discussions planned for its monthly meeting this Wednesday, July 1.
  • Part One: When someone repaves a parking lot, it's usually no big deal. But Parks and Recreation plans to do more when it rebuilds the lots outside Como Lakeside Pavilion and the Como Golf Course. We'll get a peek at how the reconstruction might address motor vehicle, pedestrian, and bicycle needs all at the same time. That presentation begins at 7 p.m.; it will include time for questions.
  • Part Two: The liquor, entertainment, and gambling licenses for Half Time Rec, 1013 Front Ave., are up for renewal in August. On Wednesday, Land Use gives neighbors a chance to share their observations, concerns, and suggestions about how well are the establishment and its patrons are following the conditions of its current licenses. That conversation begins at 8 p.m.
The committee discussions are July 1. Renters, homeowners, and other community members will be able to join and participate by video conference or by phone. If you want to be part of the meeting,  email us; we'll send you access information. If you can't be part of the meeting, you can send written comments, also by email.
Don't Just Wander Among the Trees
After nearly a decade, our Como Park Tree Trek is back! Stephanie Mirocha (whose late father, Chet, created the trek early this century) picks up the family legacy. Mirocha -- herself a master naturalist -- will give visitors an appreciation of the variety of tree species planted in Como Regional Park.

The trek is this Saturday, June 27, from 10 a.m.-noon. Gather on the west side of Lexington, near the stone footbridge that is near the labyrinth and pedestrian bridge.
Participation is free, but you must sign up in advance. In accordance with pandemic guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health, this event is limited to 20 people. Thought the event is outdoors, social distancing and masks will be required (masks will be available for those who do not have them). Dress for walking and the weather.
Dahlias are one of the annuals the Conservatory is selling. Photo: Minnesota Landscape Arboretum
Bring the Conservatory Home with You
Como Friends holds a "pop up" plant sale this week, featuring annuals direct from the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory. The plants -- including impatiens, dahlias, zinnias, foxglove, marigolds, and more -- are a mere 2 for $5.

The sale is this Wednesday-Thursday, July 1-2, from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Look for the tent between the Carousel and Como Town. (Credit/debit cards only.)

In case word of mouth hasn't caught up: The Conservatory is now open to visitors (with asterisks, of course). Hours are 10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily. The Zoo, however, is still off limits.

* Reservations are required (first come, first served); visitors have to follow a designated, one-way route; no more than 250 people at one time; masks are required; etc. 
Absentee Voting in Primary Begins Today
Ramsey County residents can begin voting absentee today, Friday June 26, for the Aug. 11 party primary elections. You can request a ballot by mail. Or, if you want to vote in person, your options (through Aug. 7) are:
  • Weekdays 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at the county elections office, 90 W. Plato Blvd.
  • Weekdays 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at the Ramsey County Library in Roseville, 2180 Hamline Ave. N; or at the New Brighton Community Center, 400 10th St. NW.
One of the public meetings the Como Community Council hosted. 

In Case You Missed What We Did
Because of the pandemic, board members and staff of the Como Community Council had to deliver our annual report to the neighborhood online. Here's what we accomplished (or didn't) in the past year -- and what we're working on for the next year. (The video clocks in at about 22 minutes.)
Photo: Metropolitan Council
Figure Out Where We're Going
The transportation plan of transportation planning in the Twin Cities is now available for public comment. The Metropolitan Council's " 2040 Transportation Policy Plan 2020 Update" covers not just planes, trains, and automobiles, but also biking, walking, freight, buses, congestion, air quality, equity, land use, and more -- plus how to pay for it all. They're taking public comment online and other ways through Aug. 10.

Not to be outdone, the Met Council's Transportation Advisory Board also is looking for your comments on a shorter-term, more-focused proposal: its 2021-2024 Transportation Improvement Program. These are essentially highway, transit, bicycle, and pedestrian projects for which Met Council will seek federal funding. Those comments are due sooner: by Monday July 13.
Photo: Austin Kirk
The Water's Fine
Saint Paul Regional Water Services says its drinking water continues to meet all federal and state standards. Find out what that means

Also, beginning this Monday, June 29, you can get  customer service from the water department face-to-face (or at least mask-to-mask). The counter will be open 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. at 1900 Rice St.
You Think You Know Your Neighborhood?
Staying "safe" during the pandemic no longer means we have to stay home all the time. To help you get out and about productively, the Como Community Council has created a Como Scavenger Hunt. This family friendly activity helps you discover your neighborhood, past and present; get some fresh air; and exercise your body and mind along the way.

There are two hunts: one east of Lexington, one west of Lexington. Do them at your own pace until July 31. We'll enter all completed lists into a drawing for gift cards to District 10 restaurants.  
Download the lists
Starting the Conversation in Como
Como Community Council board members are asking Como residents to be part of revisioning our neighborhood's role in ending systemic racism and dismantling inequities where we live. To begin the process, they are asking community members to share experiences with racism, ideas for pursuing racial justice, and a willingness to work for permanent change.

Time is running out: Jot down your thoughts; we'll keep the survey open through this Sunday, June 28. Then we'll get to work turning ideas into action.
Sign On 
  • You can still order our Como Kindness lawn signs. Suggested donation is $15. After we cover costs, proceeds go to the Como Park block nurse program, which works to handle the health-care and everyday needs of neighborhood seniors.  Order yours here
  • You can still promote the new, lower residential speed limits in Saint Paul with a 20 is Plenty sign for your front yard, side yard, or window. The Como Community Council is distributing the signs for free in District 10 while supplies last. To reserve yours, fill out this form
This Week's Traffic Hassles
  • Como Ave.: The street is closed west of Highway 280 for complete reconstruction. Future phases will move east; the entire project is expected to last through October.
  • Dale St.: Traffic remains restricted to one lane in each direction between University and Carroll while Ramsey County builds a new bridge over Interstate 94. Ramps to and from I-94 are closed. At least until fall, motorists also cannot get from Dale to St. Anthony Ave. or from Dale to Concordia Ave. (No surprise: they can't get from St. Anthony or Concordia to Dale, either.) Central is cut off east of Dale.
  • Energy Park Drive: Traffic is down to one lane in each direction between Snelling and Lexington as pedestrian ramp installation and other preliminary work continues in preparation for Ramsey County's mill-and-overlay of the street this summer. 
  • Larpenteur Ave.: Expect lane restrictions between Snelling and Highway 280 to continue for another week as crews fix concrete that wasn't repaired well enough last summer.
Don't Miss Your Chance This Week
  • This is the last weekend Ramsey County's mobile household hazardous waste site sets up on Kent St. (just east of Dale and north of Larpenteur). Hours are 10 a.m.-6 p.m. today, Friday June 26; and  9 a.m.-4 p.m. this Saturday, June 27.
  • The League of Women Voters St. Paul holds an online discussion this Tuesday, June 30, on how the coronavirus pandemic may affect elections this year. "2020 Elections: Protected or Infected?" runs from 6:30-8 p.m.
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.