Doug Bratland's blog

The rest of my blog posts...

The "Personal Blogs" feature of is very rarely used, except for obituaries. So, in case you've stumbled upon "Doug Bratland's blog" from a Google search and were surprised that the last thing I posted was in 2006, fear not! There are another 100+ stories on by yours truly. If you're interested, you can find them here.

Nature's air-conditioning kicks in

temperature dropA lot of places around the country are fond of saying about themselves "if you don't like the weather, stick around a few minutes and it'll change." That saying sure applied to Northfield this afternoon, when one minute I had the A/C on in the car, and the next my son was huddling under a blanket.

As I drove through downtown, the bank thermometer read 79 degrees and the sky was boiling with black clouds. When I got home after the rain started, I was curious whether it was really as cold as it felt. So I checked the Carleton College Weather Database for the current readings and saw that it was 57 degrees! Once again, Northfield escaped the serious storms that have hit all around us over the past few weeks and all we really got from this system was some much-needed irrigation.

Full Moon Events

full moonWith the extended weather forecast calling for mostly clear skies, the upcoming full moon brings a flurry of autumnal activity to the area. Friends of Way Park kicks things off this Saturday at 7 p.m. with an evening of folktales and music in Way Park. Joseph Mbele, St. Olaf professor and author, will spin tales from his native Tanzania, and the Carleton African Dum Ensemble will perform between stories.

Sesquicentennial Cemetery ToursOn Monday, the night of the actual full moon, Sesquicentennial Cemetery Tours will take place from 7 to 8 p.m. and/or 8 to 9 p.m. at Northfield Cemetery (across from the High School) with actors portraying former Northfielders from their gravesites. Also on Monday, Faribault's River Bend Nature Center hosts a free Full Moon Hike from 7 to 8:30 p.m. And, if that's not enough, this full moon will also feature a very slight partial lunar eclipse, but not until just before sunrise.

Bank Raid Exhibit Opening

NHS Exhibit NHS Exhibit
A full house packed the Scriver Building last night at a reception celebrating the opening of the Northfield Historical Society's new Bank Raid Exhibit.

A dozen photos of the event are in the NHS Reception photo album.

Wellstone Memorial Dedicated in Eveleth

A memorial to the late senator and longtime Northfield resident Paul Wellstone was dedicated yesterday in Eveleth, Minnesota. The memorial, near the site where a plane crash took the lives of the senator, his wife Sheila and six others three years ago, features a series of paths with a commemorative stone for each of the crash victims.
Wellstone memorial site
A sketch of the memorial site in Eveleth (click to enlarge).

The Wellstones moved to Northfield in 1969, when Paul was hired as a professor of Political Science at Carleton College, where he remained until his election to the U.S. Senate in 1990.

young professor Wellstone
The young professor teaching a 1970 seminar at Carleton.

Way Park Update

What's happening with Way Park, now that the hospital is gone and the reclaimed parkland south of First Street has been graded and reseeded?

The next step in the development of the expanded park is to gather public input and suggestions for park design and amenities. To that end, the Friends of Way Park are in the process of mailing out a survey (PDF) to park neighbors and others on their mailing list. Also included in the survey mailing is the group's fall newsletter (PDF).

See the group's new web site for information about how to add your name to their mailing list.

LEFT: Young west side residents imagine the possibilities of an expanded Way Park.
RIGHT: A poster created by Judy Swanson illustrates some possible visions for the restored park (click to enlarge).

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