Welcome to the neighborhood: 8-week-old Duncan Ausman settles in during his first National Night Out. He and his parents, Jake and Kim, were among neighbors and former neighbors getting acquainted and re-acquainted at Tilden Park. Their get-together was one of three dozen block parties big and small in District 10 on Aug. 1. 
State Capitol Throws a Party
Next weekend, Aug. 11-13, the refurbished Minnesota State Capitol holds an official grand opening for us, the public. Events include tours, videos, performances by local bands and dance groups, a Prince dance party, yoga on the Capitol lawn, a kids zone, fireworks, dedications, book signings, and panel presentations on issues serious and less so (including a history of Minnesota beer). Most activities are free, some require advance registration, and a few make you pay. Get all the information, including daily schedules.
There's a Seat with Your Name on It
This Tuesday, Aug. 8, is the deadline to get your name on the ballot to fill one At-Large board vacancy on the Como Community Council.  Any District 10 resident at least 18 years of age is eligible to run; so are representatives from businesses or institutions in the neighborhood.
  • Learn more about the expectations for board members. Interested in running? 
  • Submit your name and a brief bio to District 10 by email
The special election for the seat is Tuesday Aug. 15 at 7 p.m., before the monthly board meeting.  The elected candidate will serve until April 2019. 
Summerfest is On Deck at North Dale
North Dale Recreation Center's annual "Summerfest" is this Tuesday, Aug. 8. It's a night of music, food, pony rides, a climbing tower, carnival games, crazy hair, face-painting, sports demonstrations, inflatables, and more. Summerfest runs 5-7:30 p.m. at the center, 1414 N. St. Albans.

The event, co-sponsored by the North Dale Booster Club, is a fund-raiser for rec center activities. Tickets for food and games are available the night of the event. 
BattleBots is one of the summer camps at North Dale. 
A Cure for Summer Doldrums
Running out of things to do with your youngsters this summer?
  • North Dale and Northwest Como recreation centers both have camps for youth and teens starting this month. North Dale has a half-dozen camps ranging in price from $54-$110; Northwest Como has a half-dozen camps ranging in price from $80-$174.  Fee assistance is available for eligible families.
  • Como Zoo continues to offer morning and afternoon camps for preschoolers through 8th graders. More than 20 camps are available weekdays through Sept. 1. Camp Como costs $135-$155 per session, depending on age.
Don't get left out in the cold: Registration begins this Monday, Aug. 7, for fall fitness programs for youth, teens, and adults at North Dale and Northwest Como. 
It's Free. Really.
Do you have a Saint Paul Public Library card? Well, that allows you to download five music tracks each week -- for free! The MP3 files are yours to keep. Get all the details

Watching Our Waste: Compostable Bags
As many of you know, our organics recycling site on Beulah Lane in Como Park is open 24/7. One tradeoff: It is not staffed. Which means there's no guarantee that replacement compostable bags are available when you need them. Volunteers do stock the site repeatedly, with at least 180 bags a week. But if the supply is out when you're there, that does you no good. So, here are a few options if that happens:
  • You can pick up free bags at the Como Park Streetcar Station on Sundays from noon-4 p.m.
  • Compostable bags are increasing available to buy at grocery stores, hardware stores, big box stores, and other retail outlets. The Biodegradable Products Institute has a list of brands and stores where you should be able to find them locally. (Be sure the bags are BPI-certified.)
Be a Solution to Water Pollution
Do you live here? Care about water quality? Then how about becoming a Master Water Steward? Stewards are regular people who learn how to educate their neighbors and lead projects that protect our lakes and rivers.

The Capitol Region Watershed District is recruiting for the next cohort of water stewards, who begin training in October. To learn more, attend an information session on Monday Aug. 13, from 5:30-6:30 p.m., at the Freshwater Society, 2424 W. Territorial Road. (If that doesn't work, there's another information session Sept. 14.) Or find out what you need to know and sign up online.
Transformation of Wheelock Begins
The heavy equipment is moving into place, and the reconfiguration and reconstruction of Wheelock Parkway are expected to begin full bore this Monday, Aug. 7. Workers are starting at the Victoria/Maryland/Como Lake Drive intersection and heading east toward Dale St.

Another new project: If you're making an Izzy's run, be aware that Ramsey County begins resurfacing Marshall Ave. from Snelling Ave. west to the river beginning this Monday, Aug. 7. The county hopes to have that work finished before the State Fair opens on Aug. 24.  Meanwhile, the usual headaches remain:
  • Como Ave. is closed in both directions west of Raymond Ave.
  • On Snelling Ave., only one lane in open in each direction between Como Ave. north to County Road B. 
Como Park Isn't on the List
Ramsey County wants to know what you think of its park system (you know, all those picnic pavilions, lakes, and trails north of Larpenteur). It's got a survey that wants you to think big picture (such as what you like best about county parks, how they can save energy, and what programs and facilities you'd like them to add). The survey also asks you to think nitty-gritty (such as what you do in their parks, and what condition the bathrooms are in).
Just Floor It
The Preservation Alliance of Minnesota has two classes coming up on caring for wood floors. A sanding class is this Thursday, Aug. 10, from 6-8 p.m. at a private home in Dayton's Bluff. A finishing class is the following Thursday, Aug. 17, from 6-8 p.m. at Pete's Hardwood Floors, 186 N. Fairview. Cost is $25 per class.
The Lawn Signs are Back!
District 10 is reviving our lawn sign safety campaign. The goals: To get drivers to slow down and to make our residential streets safer for everyone. To make it work, you organize 10-12 neighbors who will stick a sign in their yards for two weeks. If you are interested, contact us by email or call us at 651-644-3889. We'll figure out which dates work best. 
Trying to Keep Pace in the Park    
  • StoryWalk: This Sunday, Aug. 6, 1-3 p.m. Do something different to enjoy your walk or run around the lake: Read. Pages from the children's book "One Dog Canoe" will be posted along the path. For you Type A multi-taskers, consider it interval training.
  • Como Park Relays: This Wednesday, Aug. 9, near the east picnic pavilions. The cross-country foot races are open to all ages, with different distances each Wednesday in August. Preteen races start at 6:30 p.m.; teen and adult relays start at 6:45. On-site registration is 50 cents for those age 14 or younger, $2 for teens 15-17, and $5 for adults.
Somehow, the villagers in "Brigadoon" know about Spock's live-long-and-proper greeting. 
A New Weekend, a New Musical
Rosetown Playhouse brings "Brigadoon" to the Lakeside Pavilion this weekend and next. Shows are today and Saturday, Aug. 4-5, then this Thursday through next Sunday, Aug. 10-13. All performance (except Aug. 13) are at 7 p.m. Tickets are $7-$15.  If you're looking for free music on the promenade, here's this week's lineup:
  • Sunday Aug. 6: Twin Cities Show Chorus and Minneapolis Commodores Mens Chorus, 3 p.m.; The 1st John Philip Sousa Memorial Band, 7 p.m.
  • Monday Aug. 7: Minnesota Mandolin Orchestra, 7 p.m.
  • Tuesday Aug. 8: Saint Anthony Park Community Band, 7 p.m.
  • Wednesday Aug. 9: Minnesota State Band, 7 p.m. 
  • The season's full lineup
Farmers Market: The Dockside Farmers Market unloads the goods every Thursday from 2-6 p.m. 
Don't Miss These Dates, Deadlines  
  • Today, Friday Aug. 4: Deadline to apply for the Wilder Foundation's Neighborhood Leadership Program.
  • This Monday, Aug. 7: District 10 Land Use Committee (rescheduled), 7 p.m. Como Park Streetcar Station. Community members are always welcome to attend and participate.
  • This Tuesday, Aug. 8: District 10 Neighborhood Relations Committee (rescheduled), 7 p.m. Como Park Streetcar Station. Community members are always welcome to attend and participate.
  • Tuesday Aug. 15: Como Community Council monthly meeting, 7 p.m. Como Park Streetcar Station. Community members are always welcome to attend and participate.
  • Tuesday Aug. 15: Deadline for renters and homeowners to file for Minnesota property tax refunds.
  • Wednesday Aug. 16: Open house on reconstruction of High Bridge and Smith Ave., 5-7 p.m. Capital View Cafe, 637 Smith Ave.
  • Wednesday Aug. 16: Bee Real Bee Everywhere, 6-7:30 p.m. Public Art Saint Paul celebrates its 30th birthday and unveils plans for its "bee high-rise" along the walking paths near the intersection of Horton, Nagasaki and W. Como Blvd. 
  • Sunday Aug. 20: Japanese Obon Festival, 3-9 p.m. Marjorie McNeely Conservatory.
  • Tuesday Aug. 22: Open house on reconstruction of High Bridge and Smith Ave., 5-7 p.m. Bad Weather Brewery, 414 W. 7th St.
  • Thursday Aug. 24: Minnesota State Fair opens. Discounted advance tickets are available now.
  • Friday Aug. 25: Deadline to apply for Saint Paul's  Cultural STAR funding program.
Parting Wisdom  
Longtime Western District crime prevention coordinator Pam McCreary retired this week. Of all the wisdom Pam shared over the years, she repeated one piece of advice over and over: "If you see something suspicious, call the police!" She frequently followed that core advice with nuggets like these:
  • If you don't call it in, we don't know. If we don't know, it's like it never happened.
  • Don't worry about bothering us -- that's our job.
  • Call first. Then post on social media if you have to.
Let's all wish Pam a happy retirement. Then follow her advice. 
This Week at the Fairgrounds
North Central Reining Futurity and Derby Show: Through this Sunday, Aug. 6, Warner Coliseum. It's the final event before the State Fair itself; the Fairgrounds go into shutdown mode beginning this Monday, Aug. 7.
Borrow portable recycling stands like these for free.
The Good Weekends are Running Out 
District 10 has street barricades and portable recycling containers that community members can use for block parties or family events. You can borrow the recycling containers for free; there are two kinds:
  • For cans, bottles and other items you can include in your weekly recycling.
  • For food scraps and other compostable organics.
The street barricades are required by the city when you block off your street or alley -- but ours are a more-affordable option than getting them from Public Works.
  • Barricades require a $50 deposit. We return $45 when you return the barricades.
  • Reservations are first-come, first-served.
  • To borrow our barricades, you must have an event permit from the city.
To reserve any of this equipment, call our office at 651-644-3889, or send us an email.
If it's Sunday, the Streetcar Station is Open
The Como Park Streetcar Station is now open every Sunday through September from noon-4 p.m. Stop in to learn a bit about the history of Como Park, admire the new paint job inside, pick up an organics recycling starter kit (including a plastic kitchen bin), or just share comments and suggestions with a District 10 board member who's on staff that day. The Streetcar Station is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton. 
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. Well, we'd like to give you more exposure. This newsletter is happy to highlight the best of what local photographers send us about life in Como Park -- just as we did with Janna Caywood's photo today. 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.