Here is the latest “Midpoint,” a mid-month Web report on some local news and information received since the publication of our November issue:

Milton Square “Yuletide Faire” coming Nov. 20 and 21

Milton Square retail shops and restaurants will hold their annual “Yuletide Faire at the Square” on Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 20 and 21, for a festive weekend of local holiday shopping and festivities.

The weekend activities will feature Milton Square’s regular specialty shops along with a pop-up market taking place indoors and outdoors with more than a dozen local artisans and businesses. Visitors will be able to find a wide variety of hand-crafted goods and holiday gifts, many of which are inspired by ethnic and cultural traditions from around the world.  

Special events will include a book signing at Winding Trail Books with Minnesota authors Vicki Johnson and Kelly Walseth and their holiday children’s book “A Wooden Shoe for Nell.”  The book signing will be from 1 to 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 20.

Other activities during the weekend will include folk art and craft demonstrations, outdoor Christmas caroling and tasty holiday treats.

Besides Milton Square’s own businesses, visitors can shop at the holiday pop-up market. Local vendors will include Autumn Carolynn Photography, Brother Bear Salmon, Gypsy Wagon Mobile Art, Lil Bit of Hygge, Perry Family Farms, Nordikk Butikk, PhoenixFire Jewelry, Poppy’s Prints, Saint Paul Designers, Scandinavian Inspired Folk Art by Kim, ShandaiMade, The Modern Remedy, The Voyageur and True North Home Goods. 

–From Milton Square press release

League of Women Voters program

The League of Women Voters St. Paul’s November “Learn with the League” program will feature projects created by student leaders for voter registration and education.       

The student leaders will talk about their work in schools to educate and register voters. The virtual program is scheduled for 7 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 30.

The event will be available via Zoom and also will be shown on LWVSP’s Facebook page.  Interested participants can register on Zoom with this link:

Artists at boreal loft

The works of artists from the Lake Country Pastel Society and Front Avenue Pottery will be featured during December at the boreal art loft, 2276 Como Ave. All work is for sale. Free public viewing is available during store hours 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Mondays through Saturdays and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sundays

Falcon Heights considering vacant buildings registry

The Falcon Heights Planning Commission continues to discuss its regulation of vacant buildings, with an eye to possibly changing the city code in the coming months.

City Administrator Sack Thongvanh said in early November that the commission and the city attorney were still working on language, but that the effort had been “pared down…to a simple registration.”

The commission’s discussion of the issue dates back at least to 2012, when the recession resulted in a rising number of vacant properties. City staff revived the discussion in 2017 after a citizen complaint about a specific property.

For the commission’s October 2019 meeting, city staff assembled study documents that included national and local recommendations. Examples of rules in other cities showed application forms, fees and penalties for noncompliance.

Currently, Falcon Heights has some rules that govern vacant properties, such as maintenance of all properties. If the Planning Commission reaches a recommendation on adding any additional rules, the City Council would need to hold a public hearing before adopting or revising its existing ordinance. As of early November, no hearing had yet been scheduled.

–Written by Anne Holzman, Bugle freelance writer who covers Falcon Heights and Lauderdale governmental news.

Midpoint report compiled by Bugle managing editor Scott Carlson.

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