Oops! During a recent snow, this hat lost its owner near the Marjorie McNeely Conservatory. Photo: Katy Korby
Search is On for Dockside's Replacement
Saint Paul Parks and Recreation is officially looking for new management at the Como Lakeside Pavilion. The city's formal request for proposals says "partnerships are highly encouraged" and asks vendors to break out plans for "year-round and seasonal offerings and services"; different "business centers" (such as a restaurant, catering, and outside land and lake operations); and hours, menus, and prices.

Proposals will be evaluated on a 1,000-point scale in six categories, including business plan and vision, experience, and community engagement. City officials will make the final decision, but an independent committee will evaluate all proposals. The evaluation committee will include representatives from the Como Community Council; Wards 1, 4, and 5; and various government agencies. Proposals are due by Jan. 4.
Your Last Chance to Say Something Nice
Today is the last day to send us nominations of individuals or organizations in District 10 to add to Saint Paul's Neighborhood Honor Roll. The annual, citywide award pays tribute to residents who improve the quality of life in St. Paul. The award typically recognizes members of our community who make a sustained and lasting impact in the neighborhood and city.

To nominate someone,  email us by the end of today, Friday Dec. 15. Give us a short description of their accomplishments or the reasons they are making Como a better place to live, work, or play. The District 10 Board will evaluate nominees at Tuesday's monthly meeting. 
Adios, Mis Amigos
Saint Paul Forestry will cut down nearly 60 more boulevard ash trees in District 10 beginning in January. The trees are the last of the ash still standing on:
  • Alameda from Wheelock south to Maryland
  • Alameda from Hoyt south to Arlington
  • Arlington from Victoria east to St. Albans
  • Maywood from Cottage south to Wheelock
  • Nebraska near Alameda
The trees are among 995 ash citywide that Forestry has identified as infested with emerald ash borer and will remove early in 2018. See the map

Meanwhile, at the park: The late start to winter means Forestry did not begin removing 150 additional ash and about 15 more dead trees from the Como Golf Course this past week, as originally scheduled. That work is now rescheduled for the week of Jan. 22.
About Those Traffic Signals
It will be at least a few more weeks before traffic signals are up and functioning on Dale at Wheelock. Engineers say they're still waiting for the manufacturer to deliver equipment. 
Watching Our Waste: Easy on the Salt
Too much salt can be bad enough for our bodies. But it's toxic for Como Lake and aquatic life. When chloride gets into water, we can't get it out. It's not like we can easily dilute a lake or river.

So, this time of year -- as we try to be good neighbors and try to keep our sidewalks clear of snow and ice -- what do we do? Be smart, the Mississippi Watershed Management Organization recommends. To help us out, the watershed district created a very practical guide on using salt (or alternatives) on our sidewalks and driveways. The guide includes downloads and a chart of what kinds of de-icing products work best at which temperatures. It also spells out what kind of harm each product causes. Highlights:
  • Whenever possible, shovel and scrape -- early and often.
  • After that, whenever possible, let the sun do the work for you.
  • If the temperature is too cold, standard salt (sodium chloride) doesn't work. So don't waste your time using it. When it's too cold for salt (about 15 degrees F), use sand, some other grit, or a more expensive de-icing alternative.
  • At warmer temperatures, sand is basically useless, too.
  • Don't overdo it. A little salt (or sand) goes farther than you think it does. The guide tells how to measure how little you really need.
  • Once the salt (or sand) does its job, sweep up what's left on the pavement. Save it for next time.
Youth Hockey with a Local Flavor
The Saint Paul Hockey Club -- a low-cost program for boys and girls 13 or younger -- begins this Saturday, Dec. 16, at North Dale Recreation Center. Youngsters skate three times a week: Mondays and Thursdays at 6 p.m., and Saturdays at 11 a.m. Registration is free for children born in 2011 or later, and $50 for children born 2005-2010. In addition, some equipment is available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Children can sign up and get sized for equipment on Saturday from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. North Dale is at 1414 N. St. Albans.
G.F. Handel -- without his customary wig.
Start Warming Up Now
Como Park Lutheran Church hosts its annual "Messiah" Sing-Along this Sunday, Dec. 17. The event features a chamber orchestra, soloists, and you as part of an ad-hoc community chorus. 

Chorus participants will sing Handel's "And the Glory" (No. 4), "O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion (No. 9), "For unto us a child is born" (No. 12), "Glory to God" (No. 17), "Surely he hath borne our griefs" (No. 24), "And with his stripes we are healed" (No. 25), "He trusted in God" (No. 28), "Hallelujah" (No. 44), "Since by man came death" (No. 46), "But thanks be to God" (No. 51), and "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain" (No. 53).   Singers: You know what those numbers mean, right?

The sing-along is from 3-5 p.m. at the church, 1376 Hoyt. This event is free for singers and listeners. You can bring your own score or purchase one at the door.  Afterward, church members will serve an Advent dinner from 5-7 p.m. Dinner features Swedish meatballs, baked ham, rosemary potatoes, and lefse. Cost for the meal is $8 ($4 for children, with a $25 family maximum).
Bookending the Holidays
  • This Tuesday, Dec. 19: Saint Paul Police monthly community meetings, 9:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. Western District headquarters, 389 N. Hamline.
  • This Tuesday, Dec. 19: District 10 Como Community Council monthly meeting, 7 p.m. Como Park Streetcar Station, northeast corner of Lexington and Horton. All community members are welcome to attend and participate. Read the preliminary agenda
  • Tuesday Jan. 2: Saint Paul park permit lottery for 2018, 6:30-7 a.m., 1100 N. Hamline. 
It's Derby Time Again at the Fairgrounds
North Star Roller Girls: This Saturday, Dec. 16, Warner Coliseum. 6 p.m. Admission: adults and children 11 or older, $13; children 10 or younger, free with a paying adult. Group discounts and package promotions are available.
Don't Outbox Yourself
Recycling at home is a good thing -- except when it gives burglars clues about the goodies we buy or get as gifts. One clue to avoid: Displaying the cardboard packaging from tools, TVs, computers, phones, or other electronics. 

Again this season, we can get these clues off our property. Saint Paul Police and the city's All In recycling program have a special drop-off site exclusively for cardboard boxes. The bin is outside the Western District police station, 389 N. Hamline, until Jan. 8. The service is free; to maximize space, break down the cardboard before you deposit it.

This Week's Neighborhood Crime Report:  It's amazing how winter weather can slow down criminals.
Photographers, Don't Keep It to Yourself
We know plenty of you are taking pictures of the people, places and things that make our neighborhood unique. We can give you more exposure. This newsletter is happy to highlight the best of what local photographers send us about life in Como, just as we did with today's photo from Katy Korby . It's easy: Just email 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.