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Sunday
Oct 26th

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Target Holidazzle Kicks Off on 11/26

Target Holidazzle Kicks Off on 11/26With opening night fireworks, the Minneapolis Downtown Council prepares for an exciting parade season

Nothing says the holidays like bundling up, heading to Nicollet Mall with family and friends and participating in the wonderful holiday tradition that is Target Holidazzle.

Target Holidazzle, now in its 19th season, is expected to draw more than 300,000 local, regional and national guests wishing to enjoy the glistening lights, beloved storybook characters and enchanting holiday music.

“There are many new enhancements to look forward to in this year’s parade,” said Leah Wong, vice president of events and marketing of the Minneapolis Downtown Council. “For the first time in Target Holidazzle history, opening night will kick off with a spectacular fireworks display.”
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Akobaye Drexall Stafford, 38, “Gone too soon”

Akobaye Drexall Stafford, 38, “Gone too soon”Akobaye Drexall Stafford, age 38, died on Saturday, October 31, 2010 in Corvallis, OR. In his short life, Ako was a husband, father, poet, an outstanding athlete, soldier, college-athlete academic adviser and special-education foster-care provider. On Friday, November 19th at 10 am, a military interment will be held for Ako at Fort Snelling National Cemetery in St. Paul. A memoriam will follow at 11:30 am at Progressive Baptist Church on 1505 Burns Avenue in St. Paul.  Michael Jackson’s song, “Gone Too Soon” (1991) expresses the feeling we have regarding our lost.

We have learned a lot in the days that followed Ako’s death about his passions, curiosity, generosity, and willingness to lend a helping hand.  The clarity came not because of something Ako said or did, but through the outpouring of love and support we all received from so many friends. It became clear that the friends he made and the depth of those friendships revealed Ako’s beautiful spirit. He never said, "This is how you treat people." Instead he modeled it.
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US response to UN human rights review contains many ‘commitments;’ little substance

Thr UN Human Rights Council delivered its recommendations to the US government, following the US review last week under the Universal Periodic Review process all UN member states must undergo every four years.

The UN report contained 228 specific human rights recommendations on issues ranging from racial discrimination to Guantanamo Bay.

Reacting to the response by the US government delegation to the recommendations, Ajamu Baraka, Director of the US Human Rights Network said, “Superficial commitments are not enough – what are needed are concrete and specific pledges to correct the ongoing human rights violations we still see in this country.”
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US activists critique government performance at UN Human Rights Review

Geneva – US activists in Geneva observing the government’s first-ever review by the UN’s top human rights body said the government failed to convince the world of its positive human rights record.

“If the US government delegation’s objective was to reclaim the mantel of global human rights leadership, it failed miserably in that effort,” said Ajamu Baraka, Executive Director of the US Human Rights Network (USHRN), immediately after observing the US review.

“What we heard instead was an eloquent defense of US ‘exceptionalism’ – its view of itself as somehow having a ‘special status’ that does not require it to conform to internationally recognized human rights norms and standards.”
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Elections 2010: A powerful dilemma

2010 elections should be cause of alarm for Black Americans, but also present a unique window of opportunity for power building and power sharing.

First the good news:  Former St. Paul Police Chief John Harrington will become the second African American elected to the Minnesota Senate in history, and the first to be elected by a district with a sizable population of people of color.

The first Black State Senator, Dr. Robert Lewis, represented St. Louis Park, a Minneapolis suburb, winning election in a district that had virtually no people of color. Lewis ably represented his district and people of color throughout the state also looked to him for leadership and support. He delivered.
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Drum Major for education

Drum Major for educationMajor Topps Jr., 61, of Minneapolis, died Tuesday at North Memorial Medical Center, in Robbinsdale, MN. He was a drum major for education.

Born on Sep. 11, 1949 in Detroit, Michigan Topps was one of four children of Delores and Major Topps Sr.

Topps founded the organization Education is our Goal, which focused on the betterment of youth and Black youths get high school diplomas and pursue college degrees. 

He created and led several youth drum and dance corps, commanding the attention of children and their families with precision drumming and drills. He commanded the attention of the entire neighborhood on warm pre-dusk summer evenings. The joyous cacophony of Africa centric drum lines spoke distantly to all corners of the community. Even if you didn’t know exactly where they were holding practice, their rhythms infused the air with purposeful vitality, letting the elders know that the youth were ok.
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Minneapolis Park Board selects Jayne Miller as Superintendent

Minneapolis Park Board selects Jayne Miller as SuperintendentMinneapolis Park and Recreation Board commissioners unanimously voted to approve the selection of Jayne Miller from Ann Arbor, MI, as the next superintendent of the nationally acclaimed park system and authorized Board president John Erwin to negotiate a contract.

“Ms. Miller has the unique skills needed for the position of Superintendent and to help direct staff as we make needed changes moving forward,” said John Erwin, President of the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board. “She has extensive experience in park and recreation leadership, budget management, community development, planning, environmental stewardship and public/private partnerships.”
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0il tanks exhausted, think tanks needed

0il tanks exhausted, think tanks neededPart 4 of 5

Excerpt from Nigeria’s 50th anniversary lecture at the Embassy of Nigeria, Paris. . Lecture video and audio are posted at http://www.youtube. com/watch?v=d1mClXleezY and emeagwali.com.

The man with wisdom is a shining torch that sheds light in our darkness and guides us out of our ignorance. I am often asked: "How do we build a stronger Nigeria through technological innovation?"

I came across the answer in 1963 sitting on the verandah of our house along Gbenoba Road, Agbor, Midwest Region. I was silently reciting a quotation on the masthead of the newspaper called the West African Pilot. It read: “Show the light and the people will find the way.”
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Warners’ Stellian honored with 'Emerging Award' at Minnesota Family Business Awards

Warners’ Stellian honored with 'Emerging Award' at Minnesota Family Business AwardsWarners’ Stellian Appliance Co. Inc. is named as the winner of its 2010 Emerging Award during the Minnesota Family Business Awards ceremony held Tuesday in Minneapolis.

The Minnesota Family Business Awards are dedicated to recognizing outstanding Minnesota-based family businesses and promoting the considerable value family businesses bring to the state's economy and quality of life. Nearly 50 of Minnesota’s premier family businesses applied for the recognition.
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Secretary of State Mark Ritchie discusses 2010 election results; possible recount in Governor's race

Secretary of State Mark Ritchie reviewed election night 2010 and discussed the potential recounts in the governor's race and other legislative races. "More than 55 percent of Minnesota's eligible voters went to the polls to cast ballots in federal, state and local races," said Ritchie. "While the results of yesterday's election will not be official until the state canvassing board certifies the election, it now appears that three legislative House races and the governor's race could potentially trigger automatic hand recounts."

An automatic recount is triggered by Minnesota Law (Minnesota Statutes M.S. 204C.35) when the margin between state, judicial and federal candidates is less than one-half of one percent. The legislative House District races that may trigger a recount include the race between King Banaian (R) and Carol Lewis (DFL) in district 15B; Kelby Woodard (R) and David Bly (DFL) in 25B and Rich Murray (R) and Robin Brown (DFL) in 27A.
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Ellison receives 100% rating from the 
Human Rights Campaign; Makes plea for “Equality and Inclusion”

Ellison receives 100% rating from the 
Human Rights Campaign; Makes plea for “Equality and Inclusion”Congressman Keith Ellison (Minneapolis) received a 100% rating from the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) in its Congressional Scorecard for the 111th Congress. The scorecard rates members of Congress on their support for legislation affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender equality.

“I am honored to have my work in Congress recognized by the tireless advocates for equality at the Human Rights Campaign,” Ellison said. “My life’s work is based on the principle that all Americans, regardless of race, class, creed, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity, must be guaranteed equal rights,” Ellison stated. “In light of the recent horrific tragedies within the LGBT community, I can hardly think of a more critical time to combat division and hate by raising a message of equality and inclusion and I thank HRC for their dedication to this work,” Ellison concluded.
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