Job security: Larry Hamby, of Saint Paul Public Works, was one of the crew patching potholes this week on Victoria St. This time of year, Hamby says, "we just try to get the big ones and slow them down."
Digging Back into Time
Age is not the only distinctive feature of the Hoyt-Hazzard House.
Faculty and students from the anthropology department at Hamline University will conduct a preliminary archaeological dig at one of the oldest houses in Como this Saturday, May 11. Brian Hoffman, chair of the department, will take soil cores from around the Hoyt-Hazzard House on Nebraska Ave. The project hopes to unveil clues on how the uses of yards evolved in what were once rural, but now are now urban, environments.

Most likely, Hoffman says, the cores will reveal garbage or remnants of out-buildings. Even those findings provide insight on how early residents lived. "It's no different than if we went down an alley and pulled out garbage bags -- just 150 years older," he says. The cores reveal layers of soil and debris in rough chronological order. If the cores show anything more extensive, Hoffman says, students will do more formal work this summer.

Hoffman lives in Como with his wife, Nancy,   an archaeologist with the Minnesota Historical Society who also will take part in the dig. Hoffman says the home's current owners -- John Coulter and Sarah Dye -- welcomed the idea, especially before they build a garage later this year. "Every time you dig in an area, you destroy the archaeology," Hoffman says. "You only get to dig it once."

Research by Roger Bergerson, the late local historian, says the house was built in 1872 on a 10-acre lot for George Hazzard and Hannah Hoyt. She was the younger sister of Lorenzo Hoyt, a land speculator, farmer, and justice of the peace in Rose Township. Hazzard was a businessman who "apparently made and lost several fortunes," in Bergerson's words, before serving as a Ramsey County commissioner. The house has been a private home, a church, and a bed-and-breakfast.
Plan Your Garage Sale Shopping
Roughly two dozen neighborhood residents are planning garage, yard, or rummage sales next weekend. Check District 10's website early in the week; we'll publish a map of participating sales, plus lists of who is selling what where.
Swing dancing is mandatory at the Lakeside Pavilion this Thursday.
A Sure Sign of Summer
Another season of (mostly) free music and entertainment returns to the Como Lakeside Pavilion this Thursday, May 16, as the Bethel Jazz Band launches "Swingin' at the Lake." The music (with dance lessons) starts at 6 p.m. on the Promenade; the band plays till 9:00.
  • Next Friday: May 17: Erik Brandt and the Urban Hillbilly Quartet, 7 p.m.
  • Next Saturday: May 18: Beer Choir, 7 p.m.
The season's full mix of cutting-edge local artists and traditional bandstand performers is listed on Spring Cafe's website.
Tuesday is the Deadline
This Tuesday, May 14, is the deadline to get on the ballot for an At-Large vacancy on the District 10 Como Community Council board. A special election to fill the remaining one year of the term will be held during the regular May 21 meeting.

Any renter, homeowner, or other resident age 16 or older who lives in District 10 is eligible to run. So are authorized representatives from a business or nonprofit organization located in District 10.  To get on the ballot, fill out the online application Applicants after May 14 will be considered write-in candidates.
Unload Your Burdens June 8
The annual Citywide Drop-Off at the State Fairgrounds is Saturday June 8 from 8 a.m.-1 p.m. The Drop-Off, organized by Saint Paul and District 10, is a great chance for Saint Paul and Falcon Heights residents to get rid of the junk they can't throw in the trash (and to get rid of it for a reasonable price).  Find out what you can bring to the Drop-Off and how much it will cost.

If you are a senior: District 10 will attempt to pick up items in advance for senior citizens in the neighborhood. You pay for what you dispose, but the pick-up itself is free. Email District 10 or call 651-644-3889 so we can get you on the schedule.
Volunteer -- and Get a Bonus
Without volunteers, the Citywide Drop-Off event doesn't work. If you do volunteer to staff the event, you can get rid of one load of your own junk for free. We'll also keep volunteers well-fed and hydrated. Volunteers work a 3.5-hour shift; you can register here .
Sprengel's sedge is one of the natives being planted in the Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom. Photo: Katy Chayka
Need to Get Your Hands in the Dirt?
Got an hour or two to continue the restoration of the Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom? District 10 purchased more than 260 grasses, sedges, native flowers, shrubs, and trees to help keep invasives out of this valuable corner of Como Regional Park. Now we've got to get them into the ground.

A planting party is this Monday, May 13, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. Meet at the Kilmer Memorial Fireplace across from McMurray Field. Tools will be provided. To let us know you're coming, email Tricia Wehrle.
An exchange of garden hand tools is part of Seed Your Dreams.
A Gathering Dedicated to Gardeners
There's more than ever to do and learn at Seed Your Dreams -- the Como Community Seed Library's 2019 spring gardeners gathering. The event lets gardeners do more than swap stories, advice, healthy plants, and viable seeds. This year, they can trade in unneeded garden hand tools. They can learn trellis options to take their gardens vertical. They can get expert seed, planting, and growing advice and answers from Ramsey County Master Gardeners. They can join a composting tutorial. On the whimsical side, they can fold their seeded dreams into artwork.

Details: The free event is next Saturday, May 18, from 11 a.m.-2 p.m. at the Como Park Streetcar Station, which is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton.
Seeking Good, Pollinator-Friendly Gardens
District 10's Environment Committee is organizing a neighborhood garden tour July 13. The focus: Pollinator-friendly gardens. The problem: Organizers are short of gardens in South Como and Energy Park. If you know a garden in that part of the neighborhood that deserves some attention (yours, a neighbor's, a sister-in-law's, etc.), let us know. Send an email with contact information and pertinent details; we'll follow up.
You Won't Want to Leave Town
The garden tour is part of ComoFest, the annual collection of festivities that brings affordable family fun to the neighborhood almost every weekend in July. For a sneak peek at what's in line this July, go to
Our Offer is Still Good
We have a few  backyard compost barrels left for the ridiculously low price of $30.  Order your bin (through our PayPal account ); we'll get back in touch to make arrangements for you to pick it up.
Keep Plastic Bags Out of the Blue Carts
Roughly 10 percent of the stuff Saint Paul residents put in their blue recycling carts doesn't belong there. One of the biggest problems: plastic bags. The bags -- from grocers, retailers, restaurants, newspapers, and other sources -- clog Eureka Recycling's machines. On some days, crews shut down the line for a couple of hours so they can cut the plastic off.

Recycle Smart: Plastic bags, packaging wrap, and other kinds of "commercial film" can be recycled -- just in a different way. Many Cub Foods, Target, Kohl's, Wal-Mart, and Goodwill-Easter Seals stores have bins where you can deposit these bags. Find a location near you
Bonsai Take Center Stage
The annual Mother's Day bonsai show is this Saturday-Sunday, May 11-12, from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at the Marjorie McNeeley Conservatory. Members of the Minnesota Bonsai Society will display some of their finest work, and be on-hand to answer your questions about their living art. Free
  • This Sunday, May 12, Como Park Zoo's "Making a Global Impact" lecture series features the giraffes of Namibia. The free presentation is at 10:30 a.m. in the Visitor Center.
City Outlines How to Deal with Climate Change
The last chance to provide in-person feedback on the initial draft of Saint Paul's Climate Action and Resilience Plan is this Monday, May 13, from 6-8 p.m. at Neighborhood House, 179 Robie St E. (across the river on the West Side). Or, you can comment online
Sales Take Root at Fairgrounds
  • YMCA Garage Sale: Through this Saturday, May 11, Merchandise Mart. Hours: Friday, 9 a.m.-7:30 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • American Saddle Horse Spring Show: Through this Sunday, May 12, Warner Coliseum. Sessions: Friday, 10:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.; Saturday, 10:30 a.m. and 6 p.m.; Sunday, 9:30 a.m. Free public admission.
  • Friends School Plant Sale: Today-Sunday, May 10-12, Grandstand. Hours: Friday, 9 a.m.-8 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • State Fair and Sports Merchandise Clearance: Today-Saturday, May 10-11, Visitor's Plaza. Hours: Friday, noon-6 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Model Railroad and Hobby Sale: This Saturday, May 11, Education Building. 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • Machinery Hill Criterium Race Series: This Tuesday, May 14, on roads north Dan Patch and south of Hoyt. 5:30-9 p.m. Bicycle races for beginners to experts. Entry fee: adults, $25; juniors, $10.
Too Much to Miss
  • This Saturday, May 11: Bird Survey Walk, 8-10 a.m., Kilmer Fireplace, Como Outdoor Woodland Classroom. Free; reserve your spot by emailing Teri Heyer.
  • This Saturday, May 11: Cookie 5K benefit run, 8:30 a.m. Como Lake Pavilion. Registration: $35
  • This Wednesday, May 15: Reduce and Recycle Workshop, 9:30-11 a.m. Arlington Hills Community Center, 1200 Payne Ave. Learn how to move your summer event toward zero waste. Free.
  • This Wednesday, May 15: Public hearing on final draft of the Saint Paul for All 2040 Comprehensive Plan, 3:30 p.m. Third-floor City Council Chambers, City Hall, 15 W. Kellogg Blvd.
  • This Wednesday, May 15: Public hearing on request to grant former St. Andrew's church building local historic designation, 5:30 p.m. Third-floor City Council Chambers, City Hall, 15 W. Kellogg Blvd.
  • Next Friday, May 17: Chelsea Heights Spring Carnival, 5-8 p.m. Chelsea Heights Elementary School, 1557 Huron.
  • Next Saturday, May 18: Ramsey County Plant Sale, organized by the county's Master Gardeners, 8 a.m.-2 p.m. The Barn, 2020 White Bear Ave., Maplewood.
  • Thursday May 30: Stop for Me Pedestrian Safety demonstration, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Dale and Jessamine.
Cut Down Crimes of Convenience
This time of year, crimes of convenience blossom like dandelions. Reduce the temptation for thieves, and cut down your chances of being a victim, by following this simple advice:
  • Hide it. Don't leave tools, lawn equipment, or bikes sitting in your yard or driveway. If you must have valuables in your car, make sure they are not visible.
  • Close it. Keep your garage door(s) closed, even if you are nearby. Keep your windows closed if you're not around -- or pin them so they can open only a few inches.
  • Lock it. Yeah, it's a pain to lock your doors if you're running in and out doing chores. But if it's easy for you to get into your house, it's easy for a burglar, too.

This Week's Como Neighborhood Crime Update: April's results are in.

Photo: T Boardman
Streetcar Station is Open Every Sunday
For the rest of the season, the Como Park Streetcar Station is open every Sunday from noon-4 p.m. It is a great chance to learn a little about the long-gone trolley system in the Twin Cities, about the history and visionaries behind Como and the city's overall park system, to pick up organics recycling bags or kitchen starter kits, or just to chat with a District 10 board member who is staffing the day. The Historic Streetcar Station is at the northeast corner of Lexington and Horton.
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.