That’s So Minnesota
The Famous Twine Ball

The Famous Twine Ball

September 1, 2020

Minnesota has a lot of roadside attractions. But there's one that has become truly iconic; the World's Largest Ball of Twine made by one man. For decades, Francis Johnson rolled twine until the ball got so big, he had to move it onto his front lawn.
Every year, people from all over the world visit Darwin, Minnesota to see it.
Host Ellery McCardle talks with Darwin Mayor Josh Johnson about the life and legacy of Francis Johnson, and how he rolled his creation into the record books.

Race in Minnesota

Race in Minnesota

August 25, 2020

Ever since the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, books about race and racial injustice have been flying off the shelves of stores. One in particular, called "A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota" has gained renewed attention. It was published in 2016, and in it, 16 Minnesota writers give their raw account of what it's like being a person of color in Minnesota. This week, Host Ellery McCardle and KARE 11 Sunrise Anchor Gia Vang talk with the book's editor Sun Yung Shin about the struggles many people face in Minnesota.

Mall of America During a Pandemic

Mall of America During a Pandemic

August 18, 2020
Every year, some 40 million people visit the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. It's an iconic shopping, dining and entertainment complex that is feeling the brunt of COVID-19. MOA closed for a few months in the spring, and has slowly reopened. So, what's the impact of the pandemic on this international tourist destination? Host Ellery McCardle talks with Jill Renslow, SVP of Marketing and Business Development, about the changes, and what's to come for the so-called "Mega Mall."
You Betcha!: The Minnesota Accent

You Betcha!: The Minnesota Accent

August 11, 2020

The Minnesota accent is hard to miss, with our catchy phrases like "You betcha" and "Oh ya." We're often made fun of in pop culture for what we say and how we sound. This week, Host Ellery McCardle talks with Keely Wolter, a Twin Cities voice coach. She talks about why we sound the way we do, and the challenge of teaching actors how to obtain and get rid of the Minnesota accent.

Uff da! The Scandinavian Influence on Minnesota Life

Uff da! The Scandinavian Influence on Minnesota Life

July 28, 2020

We've said it before, Minnesotans have a lot of pride for their state, and a lot of that has to do with their Scandinavian background. From embracing the outdoors, to the interesting food traditions and way they speak. Host Ellery McCardle talks with Ethan Bjelland from Norway House about how these traits became so iconic to Minnesota.

Prince

Prince

July 21, 2020

His songs will live forever, and he is adored by Minnesotans. This week on the show we talk about Prince. From his childhood growing up in Minneapolis, struggling to make it on the local airwaves as a Black musician, to his rise to stardom and sudden death. Host Ellery McCardle talks with Andrea Swensson, of The Current about writing about Prince, meeting him, and continuing to uncover his legacy.

Is Minnesota the Coldest State?

Is Minnesota the Coldest State?

July 14, 2020

When you live in Minnesota, chances are pretty high that someone from out of state will say to you, "Oh, I could never live there, it's too cold!" Yes, it does get very cold here at times, but the summers can get pretty hot, too. But where does Minnesota rank with the rest of the U.S. when it comes to our blustery winters? Host Ellery McCardle talks with longtime KARE 11 Meteorologist Belinda Jensen.

What does ‘Minnesota Nice’ really mean?

What does ‘Minnesota Nice’ really mean?

July 7, 2020

You've probably heard the phrase "Minnesota Nice." Turns out, it can mean very different things. Minnesota natives see it as a representation of being polite and welcoming. People not from Minnesota often don't see it that way, and often have a hard time adapting to life here. Why is that? Host Ellery McCardle talks with Corey Bonnema and Jerilyn Veldof, authors of "Minnesota Nice?: A Transplant's Guide to Surviving and Thriving in Minnesota." They have tips on how to decode Minnesota life (including our passive-aggressive behavior), and be successful while living here.

Mississippi Headwaters

Mississippi Headwaters

June 30, 2020

Where else can you stand at the start of a major river? That's something Connie Cox of the Minnesota DNR asks us all to think about. The Mississippi River begins at Itasca State Park in Minnesota, which also happens to be the state's oldest park. But preserving this land didn't come easy. Host Ellery McCardle talks with Connie about the park's history and how it went from doomed to protected.

Minnesota’s Beautiful State Parks

Minnesota’s Beautiful State Parks

June 23, 2020

Minnesota is known for its abundance of public land, including it's 75 state parks and recreation areas. Each one has its claim to fame, and the park system as a whole has a variety of landscapes from waterfalls to high cliffs to prairies, lakes and more. Host Ellery McCardle talks with DNR Naturalist Connie Cox about the history of Minnesota state parks, and she reveals some hidden gems you need to check out.

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