The IGT partyOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 10:15 pm
AmazingOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 5:51 pm
Cirque slots by Sci GamesOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 5:19 pm
Scientific Games presents Playboy + PitbullOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 5:18 pm
Game of Thrones slots from ATIOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 5:17 pm
A brand new Shake Shack at New York, New YorkOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 10:39 am
Aristocrat G2E PartyOriginally published by DK on September 30, 2015 at 2:34 am
Chef challenge @ G2E with judges Cake Boss and Daniel BouludOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 7:52 pm
Nice to see Vanessa and Chairman StevensOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 5:11 pm
Hash House A Go-Go, Las VegasOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 1:03 pm
Las Vegas airport, D gatesOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 11:21 am
Minneapolis, Canyons, The StripOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 11:04 am
MSP-LAS for G2EOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 7:42 am
Humphrey terminal, MSPOriginally published by DK on September 29, 2015 at 7:05 am
The “Super Blood Moon Eclipse” of 2015Originally published by DK on September 27, 2015 at 10:18 pm
I’ll see you all at the finish lineOriginally published by DK on September 27, 2015 at 11:58 am
MK before heading to dinner and Eastview (album)Originally published by DK on September 26, 2015 at 7:24 pm
So said another golfer, anywayOriginally published by DK on September 26, 2015 at 1:22 pm
Ridges at Sand Creek, Hole 6Originally published by DK on September 26, 2015 at 1:21 pm
If I stand up straight, it goes away, doesn’t it?Originally published by DK on September 25, 2015 at 8:12 pm
SK and her new short hairOriginally published by DK on September 25, 2015 at 8:04 pm
Dinner @ Carbone’s EaganOriginally published by DK on September 25, 2015 at 8:03 pm
Seriously, how’d I get so slow?Originally published by DK on September 25, 2015 at 4:00 pm
The Meadows at Mystic LakeOriginally published by DK on September 25, 2015 at 3:59 pm
Too many women, too many towns…Originally published by DK on September 24, 2015 at 10:18 pm
Lighting McQueen racing JV for Eastview in a 4×100 relayOriginally published by DK on September 24, 2015 at 9:38 pm
Marketing geniusesOriginally published by DK on September 24, 2015 at 1:14 pm
Facebook down! Facebook down! And what’s up with the 2014 copyright?Originally published by DK on September 24, 2015 at 1:11 pm
Our second visit to the 2015 Minnesota State Fair was Saturday, September 5th, and it turned out to be one of my best visits ever (and the first one was pretty damn good too). It was a day filled with food, friends, music and good weather. After the stressful parking situation for the Milk Run, we elected to take the free park and ride bus from Gloria Dei Lutheran Church in St. Paul and entered the grounds at the West End transit hub. We had intentionally skipped this area the first time, so I started at the Blue Barn for their new items:
- Grandma Deb’s Snicker Bar Salad (Chopped SnickersÂ® bars and Granny Smith apples tossed in vanilla pudding with whipped cream and drizzled with caramel sauce)
- Cowboy Dave’s Cluck & Moo (smashed potatoes, roasted beef and grilled chicken covered with beef gravy, crispy onions and mustard BBQ sauce)
I actually ordered the Cluck & Moo later in the day, but we did go to LuLu’s Public House in the morning to try the new Mac & Cheese Cupcake (mac & cheese nestled in a breadcrumb crust, then sprinkled with breadcrumbs and frosted with a dollop of Cheez Whiz) and our old favorite, mac and cheese on a stick. We also checked out the new semi-roof over the Schell’s Stage, which was a nice addition – too bad we missed Charlie Parr, Haley Bonar and the Cactus Blossoms.
After the West End, we hopped on the Skyride and headed over to see kid one at her new Rabbit Hole gig in the International Bazaar. That whole experience worked out great for her – they were super busy the whole time, the critics loved the entire menu and SK even got to do the plating for the TV interview Thomas did with Andrew Zimmern. Their poutine and hot tail were the only new items I really liked this year, but Thomas says he will be changing up the menu for next year (they’ve already been invited back and rumor has it fried chicken will be involved).
After that visit, it was non-stop friend meet-ups: the Skoglund family outside the education building (who also talked Colleen into finally doing the silk scarf thing), the entire Waugh family at the Go 96 booth, the New York contingent (Jennifer, Brandon and friends) by the honey stand and a mini Central High School reunion with the Shusters at the craft beer area in the Horticulture Building. Shortly after that, we also ran into Herm outside the Grandstand ramp – all the way from Las Vegas! That was a really fun surprise – nice to see his daughter and brother too (and meet his girlfriend).
Before the Avett Brothers show in the Grandstand, we stopped at the Star Tribune booth and got to chat with music critic Chris Riemenschneider, whom I’ve been a fan of for ages (but had never met). He had us run through a music trivia quiz, which we ended up winning with 9 out of 10 correct – good for a $25 gift card to Barely Brothers Records on Raymond in St. Paul. After that, we grabbed a few more Pronto Pups and some Fresh French Fries, which will always be classics in my book.
Attendance at the Avett show was only listed at 8529, but that included us, the Skoglunds and the Shusters (all in different spots). The opening group, the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, was super fun to watch. Trombonist Ronell Johnson was extremely animated and director Ben Jaffe played a mean tuba. I had never seen them before, but they have collaborated with a bunch of my favorites, including Blind Boys of Alabama, Tom Waits, Lenny Kravitz and the Edge.
The North Carolina Avetts have been on my bucket band list for a long time. Brothers Scott and Seth didn’t disappoint, playing with a lot of energy all night. I also enjoyed Joe Kwon on cello and Tania Elizabeth on violin. Both the Star Tribune review by Chris and the Pioneer Press article by Ron Hubbard (?!) were positive. Here is the set list (per Chris):
- Satan Pulls the Strings
- Live and Die
- Morning Song
- Will You Return?
- Down With the Shine
- Head Full of Doubt, Road Full of Promise
- Ramblin’ Fever (Merle Haggard cover)
- Slight Figure of Speech
- Murder in the City
- Die Die Die
- Winter in My Heart
- The Prettiest Thing (David Childers cover)
- Paranoia in B-Flat Major
- Laundry Room
- I Killed Sally’s Lover
- Talk on Indolence
- Hand-Me-Down Tune
- Thank God I’m a Country Boy (John Denver cover)
- Kick Drum Heart
- I and Love and You
Bought the cool show print for $30, which was the end of my cash. Super-short fireworks show afterwards, then we perfectly timed our return bus back to St. Paul. I wanted to go back on Labor Day too for Sturgill Simpson, Kris Kristofferson and Merle Haggard, but we had already spent a ton of money on two very fun, very full days…
See you next year, Great Minnesota Get-Together!
Big Bang Theory slots coming soon – leery of the demographic fitOriginally published by DK on September 23, 2015 at 5:00 pm
Not sure what I think about the cops part…Originally published by DK on September 23, 2015 at 4:59 pm
http://www.vikings.com/stadium/new-stadium/webcam.htmlOriginally published by DK on September 23, 2015 at 11:15 am
I don’t usually write a lot about casinos on this site, but there has been so much Minnesota news this year, I just can’t pass up the opportunity to offer a little commentary. I’ll start off with Treasure Island Resort and Casino, operated by the Prairie Island Indian Community outside Red Wing, Minnesota. Like many rural Minnesota casinos, they are Goodhue County’s number one employer, with a large gaming floor (roughly 2200 slots, 50 tables and bingo), 500 hotel rooms, RV park, marina, 24-lane bowling center, multiple dining options and the Island Event Center, which can seat 3000 people for concerts and other events. The tribe also purchased the Mount Frontenac Golf Course in 2000, which is located about 22 miles south of the casino on highway 61. Oh, can’t forget the 120 passenger yacht “Spirit of the Water,” which is unique among casinos in the state.
We started visiting Treasure Island early on, long before they added all these newer amenities. An early favorite memory was getting my first royal flush on a quarter video poker machine. I’m pretty sure this was when I was still a poor college student, so instead of $1000 for a max coin bet ($1.25), I won a grand total of $62.50. Still not bad for a single quarter bet, but I later learned a nickel machine pays $200 on a 25-cent bet. Other memories include seeing Ron White in concert (and watching him drive a scooter all over the casino afterwards), bowling during the 2012 Super Bowl and watching A BrulÃ© Christmas last year.
Several little birdies have told me the casino has had quite a bit of staffing and revenue drama the past year, but major decisions are still being made: the new Tado Steakhouse opened in March, the Tradewinds Buffet just reopened after a major remodel and they broke ground in May on a $19 million pool expansion that will include a fitness center, spa/salon, lazy river, zero depth pool and a swim-up bar. Colleen and I liked Tado – it’s a beautiful room with good food. Service wasn’t the best, but we did visit right after they opened. Brad and I tried to stop for lunch at the new buffet after golfing at The Jewel, but they refused to seat us at 2:01. Ugh.
We had another recent negative experience with a security guard, but the service recovery was laudable. Colleen and I stopped at their convenience store outside the casino before heading in to play. She bought a soft drink there, but a casino guard wouldn’t let her bring it in the building. Their marketing department sent me an email after our visit and I let them know about her experience. Within a day, I had a personal reply from Security Manager Leslie Keplin apologizing and explaining their policy. Very nice.
Treasure Island competes aggressively with Mystic Lake and Grand Casino Hinckley for the bulk of the Twin Cities market and must spend a ton of money on advertising and promotion. They sponsor just about every major sports team in Minnesota and my dad and uncle love spinning the wheel at Wild and Twins games. They have both redeemed multiple hotel stays and various amounts of free play. I even won $100 in free play during a Twins game and used it by visiting my old friend Kenny in the tiny, non-smoking area way back by the poker room (they also have a larger non-smoking area near bingo).
Overall, I like what they are doing for their community (and for southeastern Minnesota). I always thought they were close to our house, but it’s more than twice as far as Mystic Lake (which is still my favorite). On my last visit, I noticed that they seem to get a lot of traffic from Rochester, which I imagine is the closest gaming option for those guests (along with Diamond Jo in Iowa). I’ve never been a fan of their outside visuals, but the tropical theme inside is well executed, as is their social media. They have expanded in a patchwork fashion over the years, but it’s now coming together nicely…Originally published by DK on September 21, 2015 at 9:01 pm
Originally published by DK on September 21, 2015 at 1:27 pm
Lucy Wainwright Roche and Suzzy Roche @ Bryant Lake Bowl, 9/20/2015Originally published by DK on September 20, 2015 at 9:37 pm
She said the man in the gabardine suit was a spy. I said, be careful, his bowtie is really a camera…Originally published by DK on September 20, 2015 at 9:18 pm
Right, Megan?Originally published by DK on September 20, 2015 at 11:25 am
JD McPherson brought out the Cactus Blossums for “This Boy” during the PHC street danceOriginally published by DK on September 19, 2015 at 10:12 pm
Tom Keith memorial, Fitzgerald Theater, Saint Paul, MinnesotaOriginally published by DK on September 19, 2015 at 10:04 pm
Le Sueur Country ClubOriginally published by DK on September 19, 2015 at 6:41 pm
Crab apples in Le SueurOriginally published by DK on September 19, 2015 at 6:39 pm
…Green GiantOriginally published by DK on September 19, 2015 at 12:10 pm
Friday Fried Chicken @ Sandcastle, Lake NokomisOriginally published by DK on September 18, 2015 at 7:05 pm
Kid one and two @ The RoyOriginally published by DK on September 17, 2015 at 8:59 pm
Last Gordy’s visit of 2015Originally published by DK on September 17, 2015 at 4:18 pm
Hope Kyle is doing OK…Originally published by DK on September 16, 2015 at 9:52 pm
Wonderful round with Conor @ The WildernessOriginally published by DK on September 16, 2015 at 9:51 pm
Exciting news regarding wdwgolf.comOriginally published by DK on September 16, 2015 at 8:57 am
He’s not dead. He’s just passed out from life…Originally published by DK on September 16, 2015 at 8:38 am
Last week’s Apple event was almost overwhelming: watchOS 2, iPad Pro, AppleTV and the new iPhones. Not to mention iOS 9 and OS X El Capitan waiting in the wings (tomorrow and 9/30, respectively). The two-year AT&T contract with my trusty 32GB Space Gray iPhone 5S is up next month (10/16), so it’s time to start planning (and saving).
Colleen and MK both upgraded to iPhone 6 models in the past year and elected for the non-Plus model (both 64GB). We received a few big phones at work right after they came out and I was convinced they weren’t for me. A month ago, though, we had one come back into the shop and I decided to try it out for a few weeks. Carrying two phones is a royal pain in the butt, but it was a worthwhile experiment. My conclusion? The 128GB Space Gray iPhone 6S Plus will be my next phone.
The 5.5-inch screen with 1920Ã—1080 resolution is just gorgeous. It’s very large, but still fit in my pocket with no issues. My hands are a little too small to reach all corners comfortably, so it’s not always the greatest experience when you only have one hand free. Two handed, however, is almost like having an iPad mini again. I didn’t notice a difference in picture quality between the 6 Plus and my 5S, but the 6S Plus will have the larger 12MP resolution camera. Battery life was way better, but still not where I’d really like it to be. The 6S Plus will also pick up all of the other new goodies: 3D Touch, the 64-bit A9 chip, improved Touch ID and faster networking. Sounds like the big ones will be hard to get initially, based on the Apple Store reservation page.
As I found out when MK got her new phone, the carriers have mostly moved away from the subsidized pricing with a two-year contract routine. Now, you can either pay the full cost of the phone up front or divide it interest-free across the life of the new contract and just add that to your monthly bill. I was planning to do the latter with my new phone, but then Apple introduced their new iPhone Upgrade Program, which is actually administered through Citizens Bank. Reviews I’ve read said the Apple plan is a good deal, but one story also mentioned that AT&T may give me up to $300 for the 5S if I trade it in, so we’ll see. I could sell it myself, but that has been a pain in the past.
The Apple plan is appealing in that you get AppleCare+ (normally $129), the 6S Plus comes unlocked and you can get a new phone next year (presumably the 7 Plus). Of course you have to turn the old one in and extend the contract for another 24 months, but it seems like an easy way to stay current without any big financial penalty. They do require all kinds of info to initially get signed up: carrier information, date of birth, social security number, credit card, two forms of ID and your current phone (presumably for the SIM/number info). The monthly payments for the 128GB 6S Plus model are listed at $44.91, or a (very) grand total of $1,077.84.
The only way this looks reasonable is that I can basically cut an iPad mini out of my life, leaving just Lapzilla and Phonezilla. That, plus I’ve always really paid this much – the costs were just better hidden before. The carousel of progress turns and turns…Originally published by DK on September 15, 2015 at 8:17 pm
It’s been a while – glad to be backOriginally published by DK on September 15, 2015 at 5:41 pm
The good thing about writing a concert review nearly two months later is you have a lot of time to reflect. Unfortunately for Nina Gordon and Louise Post of Veruca Salt, my memory is totally shot. I know we went to the Cedar Cultural Center on Thursday, July 23, and saw Brooklyn-based Charly Bliss open up. Their singer Eva Hendricks was the epitome of pure youthful joy – she was so excited to be playing and truly lit up the room.
As for the headliner, they totally rocked it all night. The new album Ghost Notes is their first since 1997 (with the original lineup) and I’ve decided Prince of Wales is my favorite track (and was also the opening song). They played most of the new album, in addition to old favorites Seether and Volcano Girls. We stood near the side of the stage and got high fives from both of them as they exited after the encore. Oh yeah: can’t forget the best merch ever.
Here is another review I found and you can find the set list after the jump.
Apologies for the short post, but that’s all I’ve got…
- Prince of Wales
- I’m Taking Europe With Me
- Black and Blonde
- Laughing in the Sugar Bowl
- All Hail Me
- Empty Bottle
- Come Clean, Dark Thing
- With David Bowie
- Don’t Make Me Prove It
- Shimmer Like a Girl
- Spiderman ’79
- The Museum of Broken Relationships
- Volcano Girls
Johnny Cash never walked no line, Johnny Cash never did no time…Originally published by DK on September 14, 2015 at 7:24 pm
http://www.bbc.co.uk/newsbeat/article/34228857/new-star-wars-stamps-released-ahead-of-the-force-awakensOriginally published by DK on September 14, 2015 at 5:45 pm
Spoon Anderson hitting from behind the trees, Mesaba CC, HibbingOriginally published by DK on September 14, 2015 at 10:59 am
Ironman Memorial, Chisholm, MinnesotaOriginally published by DK on September 14, 2015 at 10:58 am
House of Wong, Roseville, MinnesotaOriginally published by DK on September 13, 2015 at 8:41 pm
Food truck Mac and cheese in EaganOriginally published by DK on September 12, 2015 at 3:19 pm
Chef Shack is the bestOriginally published by DK on September 12, 2015 at 2:58 pm
Now at the outlet mallOriginally published by DK on September 12, 2015 at 2:56 pm
Always seem to play Les Bolstad when it’s coldOriginally published by DK on September 12, 2015 at 7:53 am
SK trying something new before Hozier @ The RoyOriginally published by DK on September 10, 2015 at 7:48 pm
The pool was much more diverse; there were young professionals of all races and backgrounds, and far fewer Green Bay Packers jerseys.Originally published by DK on September 9, 2015 at 9:21 am
Vikings golf ball in my officeOriginally published by DK on September 8, 2015 at 6:22 pm
First day of high school and first day of senior yearOriginally published by DK on September 8, 2015 at 7:34 am
Star Wars backpack @ TargetOriginally published by DK on September 7, 2015 at 11:01 pm
Target has already switchedOriginally published by DK on September 7, 2015 at 11:00 pm
I’ll take the red one, Grand HinckleyOriginally published by DK on September 6, 2015 at 7:59 pm
You end up seeing everyone outside that boothOriginally published by DK on September 6, 2015 at 1:30 am
Such a nice surprise to see the Fudenberg posse at the FairOriginally published by DK on September 6, 2015 at 1:28 am