Early morning hoarfrost this week turned a grove of trees on the Como Park golf course into a glittering spectacle.
Uncover a Well-Kept Secret of Success
Celebrate one of our neighborhood's great success stories -- how a bunch of citizens volunteered for buckthorn busting in a neglected urban woodland and ended up creating a special place to play, learn, and escape outdoors. It's the story of the Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom -- and it's this weekend 's presentation in District 10's 2017 Sunday Series.

Learn about the past, present, and future of the Woodland; about the birds that find a home there; what those posts are all about; and how you can team up to continue restoring and maintaining a vibrant Woodland. The presentation includes a sneak peak at a new user's guide to the Woodland.  The free presentation is this Sunday, March 19, from 1-2:30 p.m., upstairs at the Visitors' Center at Como Zoo and Conservatory.
Take the Fast Lane to Debt Freedom
District 10 hosts a free workshop this Wednesday to help you get off the debt treadmill. TopLine Federal Credit Union and LSS Financial Counseling lead the workshop, providing proven advice to help you steer clear of debt settlement scams, utilize tools that repay debt faster, and maintain a good credit score while still taking full responsibility. The advice includes solutions for each type of debt and how to develop a plan that puts an end to debt within reach.

The workshop is this Wednesday, March 22, from 6-7:30 p.m. at the Como Park Streetcar Station, which is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton. The workshop is free and is open to the public, but reservations are required. To reserve a spot, call 763-391-9494 or
register online
Community Garden Plots Available
The Como Community Garden still has plots available for the 2017 growing season. If you are interested in a plot this summer, contact the District 10 office by email or by phone at 651-644-3889. The deadline to apply is Friday March 24.

Plots will be assigned by lottery -- first among District 10 residents, then among others if plots remain. Gardeners pay $25 for the season, and must agree to work within the adopted garden rules. The garden -- which is available to grow fruit, vegetables or flowers -- is east of Snelling and south of Almond. A typical plot is about 240 square feet. Water is supplied.
District Council Board Meets Tuesday
The District 10 Como Community Council holds its monthly meeting this Tuesday, March 21. The meeting will include presentations by the developer of the Falls Event Center planned for the "chimneys " building in Bandana Square, and an overview from city staff of zoning variances, changes, and appeals.  The meeting begins at 7 p.m. at the Como Park Streetcar Station, which is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton. All community members are welcome to attend and participate. 
You, Too, Can Join the D10 Board
Nine positions on the Como Community Council Board will be up for election at District 10's annual meeting on Tuesday April 18. The positions:
Any resident of District 10 who is age 18 or older is eligible to run. So are authorized representatives from a business or nonprofit organization located in District 10.
Candidates interested in running for a board position must submit their name, address, and a brief biography by Tuesday April 11, 2017. Nominations submitted after that date will be treated as write-in candidacies. 
Board members elected this year will serve from April 25, 2017, until April 23, 2019. 
It 's the Time of the Season
Como Zoo and Conservatory have a spring in their step this weekend as they gear up big time for the official change of seasons.  The Zoo highlights Hop into Spring events  Saturday and Sunday, March 18-19. Events feature toads, frogs, and other amphibians in presentations, stories, and hands-on activities -- including your opportunity to join an amphibian chorus.  

Meanwhile, the Sunken Garden at the Conservatory unveils its Spring Flower Show this Saturday, March 18. The garden is loaded with the color and fragrance of crocuses, tulips, daffodils, lilies, and more.  The only thing still stuck in winter: the hours. The Zoo and Conservatory still are open only 10 a.m.-4 p.m. daily through March.
Black Hills Spruce is one of the tree varieties available.
Get a Tree for Yourself (or the Neighborhood)
You can buy a tree for your yard. You can buy a tree for a local park. You can do both -- all from the same source. It 's the annual tree sale organized by Friends of the Parks and Trails of Saint Paul and Ramsey County.  This year's sale has options of five trees, seven shrubs, and one vine. Eight of the choices are new. You can see the full selection and place an order online. The purchase deadline is Friday April 21; you can pick up your order two weeks later, on Saturday May 6. 
Crew members examine a Trout Brook storm tunnel.
Watching Our Waste: The River
We talk about water quality all the time. Now a Capitol Region Watershed District video helps you understand why. The four-minute video makes it clear how what flows into Como Lake and what flows into the storm drains in much of our neighborhood directly impacts the Mississippi River. The video features the Trout Brook Storm Sewer System, the underground channel that carries away rain and snowmelt -- 3.9 billion gallons last year alone. (Bonus: The video also features people and places you might recognize.)
Why Dawdle? Get Tax Help Now
There's a month left till the deadline. Have you filed your taxes yet? If not, beat the last-minute crush by getting them done this month. Seniors and local residents with low income can get free assistance in filing their federal and state returns through AARP and Lyngblomsten. The assistance is available every Tuesday and Thursday now through April 13 from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. in the lower level community room at Lyngblomsten, 1415 Almond Ave.

Appointments are required: Call 651-999-2499 to schedule a time and find out what you need to make the session productive.  Or, use the state's searchable online database to find other free tax preparation sites that might fit better into your schedule.
Live long and prosper, indeed.
An Invitation to Boldly Go...
The rule of thumb: If it's an even-numbered Star Trek movie, it's decent. "Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home" (rated PG) is Como Dockside's Thursday night movie on March 23. 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 season schedule of "almost all the greatest movies" from 30 years ago, see Dockside's online calendar.  

Don't forget: Saturday brunch includes a free Louisiana-flavored concert from noon-2 p.m. This week, March 18, it's Daddy Squeeze and Elizabeth. Then, every Wednesday is "neighborhood night" at Dockside, with happy hour drink and food specials from 3-9 p.m., and board games waiting to be busted open.
What's on Your Calendar?
  • This Saturday, March 18: Burning of the Trees, 6 p.m., Como Park fire pits.
  • This Tuesday, March 21: Deadline to submit applications to the Wilder Foundation's Latino Leadership Program, a free, seven-week training to strengthen the skills and connections of Latinos who want to get more involved in their community.
  • Next Friday, March 24: Public hearing on an updated version of the Saint Paul Bicycle Plan, 8:30 a.m. Room 40 of City Hall, 15 W. Kellogg Blvd. 
  • Next Saturday, March 25: Ramsey County Fix-It Clinic, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Macalester College Kagin Commons.
  • Wednesday March 29: Mayor Christopher Coleman's final State of the City address, noon. Pipefitters Local 455 Training Center, 1301 L'Orient. Free, but you need to get on the guest list.
  • Sunday April 2: District 10's Sunday Series presents "The Fate of the Monarch Butterfly." 1-2:30 p.m., Great River School, 1326 Energy Park Drive. Free
  • Saturday April 22: Saint Paul Citywide Spring Cleanup, 9-11:30 a.m. Como Dockside and seven other locations around the city.
No Reason to Turn a Blind Eye to Trouble
More than 3,000 property owners have signed up for the Saint Paul Police Department 's Landlord Alert program for rental properties. The program automatically sends a notice any time police respond to a call at a registered property. It 's a great way for landlords and property managers to track whether they have problem tenants in their building. To sign up, call 651-266-5712 or email the FORCE unit.

This Weekend at the Fairgrounds
Minnesota Weapons Collectors Show: This Saturday-Sunday, March 18-19, Warner Coliseum. Hours: 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Saturday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday. Admission: $5 for teens and adults; free for children 12 or younger. All children 18 or younger must be accompanied by an adult. Loaded weapons are not allowed.
It's All Your Fault
Because so many of you actually open this weekly email and click the links we include, Constant Contact once again named us an All-Star for 2016. That means we far exceed industry standards. That's because you all pay attention. Thanks!
Hey, Photographers, Share Your Shots
We know plenty of you are taking pictures of the people and places that make our neighborhood unique. Well, we'd like to give you more exposure. Every week, this newsletter will highlight the best of what local photographers send us portraying life in Como Park. It's easy: Just  send us your top image from the past seven days or so. 
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.