In 2016, Mica L. Anders— genealogist, oral historian, and historic placemaker—interviewed 7 families about their summer cabins for the Minnesota Historical Society. All of the people she talked to had two things in common: First, they spent every summer driving to Lake Adney near Brainerd, Minnesota. And second, they were all Black families.
Lake Adney became a destination in the 1920s when a Black man named George Worthington Gamble bought land along its southern shore. Since then, Adney has been a spiritual retreat, a great fishing spot, and a healing place for generations of Minnesotans. Lake Adney’s story isn’t unique. Black families have found community on lakes dotted across the upper Midwest. But, as these families attest, Adney was special. It was theirs. KFAI’s Kira Schukar brings us this story.
William “Bill” Murray Sr. passed away in 2018.
A special thank you to Mica L. Anders for sharing her expertise and conducting the interviews in this podcast. The full oral histories can be found on the Minnesota Historical Society website.
Additional funding for this story was provided by the Minnesota Historical Society and MNHS Image and Duplication Support for Community Projects.
HUGE Improv Theater is moving. The longform improv theater, originally based at Lyndale and 31st, has spent the summer transforming the south half of Art Materials into a place for creativity, comedy, and performance. While HUGE is purchasing the space, Art Materials will continue to operate in the north half of the building.
Death Cafe is a global social franchise that wants to help people talk about death. At a Death Cafe, participants can talk about taboo topics in a lightly moderated open forum. Minnesota has a couple of these volunteer-run discussion groups. You show up, have a snack, take a seat, and chat about any topic that has to do with death.
There are many ways to mourn the loss of a loved one. Some find comfort in sharing stories and some find solace in nature. Out in the Sax-Zim Bog area, KFAI’s Matthew Schneeman found two families doing both. This story looks at both Camp Christopher and Auggie’s Bog Walk in Northern Minnesota.
Camp Christopher is a free trailer campsite for people who have lost someone to suicide. Auggie’s Bog Walk is a memorial boardwalk featuring small owl carvings. Both are testaments to the power of connecting with nature and connecting with others.
It was a big night for community journalism at the Minnesota Society of Professional Journalists 2023 Page One Awards. KFAI reporters won five awards in the Radio category at last night’s ceremony, including three first-place mentions.
Season 6 of KFAI’s MinneCulture was recognized as Best Podcast — congratulations to producers Joe Friedrichs, Emily Haavik, Sheila Regan, Matthew Schneeman, Tony Williams, host John Gebretatose, and producer/editor Julie Censullo. Reporters Michelle Bruch and Joe Friedrichs were honored with first place awards for feature reporting and in-depth reporting, respectively. Reporter Tony Williams was honored with a third place award for feature reporting and Ryan Dawes and April Ehrlich were honored with a third place award for breaking news coverage.
The award ceremony was held at the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul.
Community journalism provides a unique opportunity to uplift stories from the diverse communities of the Twin Cities and greater Minnesota, and it is an honor to be recognized for this work. KFAI is proud of the thoughtful, diligent, and creative work of all of our reporters and producers.
Complete list of awards:
Podcast – First Place awarded to Julie Censullo, Emily Haavik, Matthew Schneeman, Tony Williams, Sheila Regan, Joe Friedrichs, and John Gebretatose for season 6 of the MinneCulture Podcast (Apple Podcasts | Spotify | SoundCloud)
Video game music (VGM) has come a long way since the days of simple beeps and bloops. Today, it is a diverse and vibrant art form that can be as complex and emotionally stirring as any other type of music.
VGM artists, such as Minneapolis-local Matthew Bentley aka Theology, are building a following producing video game music meant to be listened to outside of traditional gaming platforms. KFAI’s Madeline Karita Fleming spoke with Theology and other VGM artists about the history and evolution of the genre.
In the 1990s, something special was beginning to take place in Minneapolis. On the West Bank, street artists would congregate over a slice of pizza at Rocky Rococo, challenging one another to who could paint the most elaborate graffiti throughout the cities. For people of a certain generation, names like Emer AKB, YEN 34HM, and Ewok MSK HM AWR all evoke a golden age of street art covertly tagged on Minneapolis South High School or the tracks near the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus. What was once regarded as petty vandalism has morphed into an indelible feature of our local history.
The rebellious spirit of these artists has paved the way for others to use artistic expression for chronicling history. In a tumultuous post-George Floyd moment, the question of what responsibility artists hold in speaking for, and with, their communities remains a delicate one. Which is why Joe Ellis, a native of South Minneapolis, has dedicated his career as a curator and gallerist to amplifying the creative voices of his community through various projects. KFAI’s Nick Kouhi sat down to talk with Joe about what inspirations guided his practice, as well as his hopes for the sixth edition of the Lyn Lake Street Art Series, set to open on July 14.
Ellis and and LLSAS have created a limited addition silkscreen print for LynLake Street Art Series which will be available for public purchase at the event.