Spring out to see some art and history

file photos • The Karen Women Weaving Group will be sharing its craft with visitors to the East Side Freedom Library during the St. Paul Spring Art Crawl, April 27-29.

file photos • Also taking place during the weekend of April 28 and 29 is the Minneapolis-St. Paul Home Tour. The East Side will have 10 homes featured on the tour, including 216 Bates Ave. pictured above, many of which have historical significance to the East Side community.

Thomas Bonneville/Review • The St. Paul Spring Art Crawl and the Minneapolis-St. Paul Home Tour both take place April 27-29. There are many locations involved with both events across the East Side. All events are free and open to the public.

Art Crawl and home tour are April 27-29.

If you’re feeling a bit cabin-feverish after these late-April blizzards and looking to get out, look no further than the St. Paul Spring Art Crawl and the Minneapolis-St. Paul Home Tour. Both events will have a significant presence on the East Side during the weekend of April 27-29.


Crawling with art

There will be plenty of different art mediums and locations to check out across the East Side. East Side Art Crawl locations include Swede Hollow Cafe, Indigenous Roots Cultural Arts Center, Flat Earth Brewing, J.A. Geiger Studio and the East Side Freedom Library.

Swede Hollow Cafe, the Dayton’s Bluff coffee shop located at 725 East Seventh St., will feature work by three painters, Jeanna Kosfeld, Naomi Tiry Salgado and Kate Pearce. There will also be products from Excelsior Candle Co. and That Sassy Stitch for sale. While the shop is usually open from 6:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Fridays and 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, owner Ruth Campbell said the coffee shop will have extended hours during the art crawl, staying open until 10 p.m. Friday, until 8 p.m. Saturday, and until 5 p.m. on Sunday. 

The Indigenous Roots Arts Center, which has been open for nearly a year now at 788 East Seventh St, will have both visual art displayed in the center as well as performances going on during the weekend, according to center co-founder Maryanne Quiroz. On Friday, April 27 at 7 p.m. DJ QueenDuin will present “Draggin’ on the Eastside: the Art of Drag.” 

On Saturday at the center, poet, playwright and writer Saymoukda Duangphouxay Vongsay will share some spoken word poetry at 1 p.m. Also on Saturday, from 2 to 7 p.m, Cypher Side, a hip-hop and breakdance group that teaches classes at the art center, will hold an open-style dance battle and fundraiser. At 5 p.m., Truartspeaks, a nonprofit that cultivates literacy, leadership and social justice through the study and application of spoken word and hip hop culture, will have artists sharing work at the center. At 7 p.m., the Funny Asian Women Kollective will present “Clapback Cabaret.” 

On Sunday the Taino Afro Boricua arts, dance and philosophy group Bomba Karaya Güey will host a dance class at 2 p.m. Featured visual artists who will have work up during the entire weekend at Indigenous Roots will include Tomás Araya Biagetti, Daniel Camarillo and Isaac Mendiola Gonzalez.

Flat Earth Brewing, located at 688 Minnehaha Ave. E., will feature a variety of visual mediums — retro industrial/steampunk works by Henry Walton, pen and ink designs by Jersey Mische-Richter, hand-thrown pottery by Joe Toussaint, watercolors by Susan Gainen and paintings by Tracie Thompson

J.A. Geiger Studio, an art crawl mainstay located at 1647 Beech St., has been participating for more than 10 years. In addition to stained glass art by studio owner Josephine A. Geiger, the site will also include woodcut and collagraph prints by Emily Gray Koehler, upcycled jewelry by LB Originals, porcelain pottery by Lynn Wood and mixed media garden art by Sharon Miller-Thompson.

The East Side Freedom Library, located at 1105 Greenbrier St., will have a variety of art on display during the weekend. Friday night’s events will open with music from the group Langer’s Ball. There will also be artistic games to play, including artist Keith Christensen’s “Game Turn” board game about the 1934 Minneapolis Teamsters strike. Throughout the weekend, there will be leather crafts, pottery and jewelry on display and for sale by artists Chris Singewald, Michael Sturm, Angie Renee, Cassandra Nickell and Claire O’Connor. The Karen Women Weavers Circle will be demonstrating its weaving craft all weekend and will have items for sale; the Circle’s had a popular display during past art crawls.




Learn some history during the home tour

While some crawl for art, other neighbors will be sharing their homes during the Minneapolis-St. Paul Home Tour, with many in the Dayton’s Bluff and Payne-Phalen neighborhoods. 

The Dayton’s Bluff tour will feature many historic homes, some that were saved during the community’s vacant home tour two years ago. One stand-out property is at 216 Bates Ave. Known as the Schorenstein Garage or the Railing Shop, it consists of two buildings for a total of 3,500 square feet. The two-story red building was built in 1886. The white-washed single-story garage was built in 1912 as an auto garage to serve the Schorenstein Grocery and Saloon located across the street at 707 Wilson Ave. 

The space was purchased by young couple Tia and Cory Vandenberghe in early 2017, and they are currently renovating it to convert it into their home. In a previous Review article, Cory and Tia explained they fell in love with the run-down building while participating in the 2016 vacant home tour organized by Dayton’s Bluff neighbors to save historic, condemned homes in the area.

While they had to tear down the white portion of the building, Tia and Cory will be maintaining the red building and the “Railing Shop” lettering in an attempt to preserve the historic nature of the space, which is located in the Dayton’s Bluff Historic District.

An additional highlighted home includes what many in the neighborhood call the “White House,” located at 170 Maria Ave. The home was built for Wilhemina Hamm, the daughter of Theodore Hamm, who founded Hamm’s Brewery. 

According to a St. Paul Historical article by local historian Steve Trimble, while most of the Hamms siblings built near their parent’s home near Swede Hollow, Wilhemina and her husband Albert built in the Mounds Park area due to both land availability and because Wilhemina, a garden enthusiast, wanted room for her gardens. The home now houses Northwestern Alano, which serves as a meeting place for alcohol and drug abuse recovery programs. 

Other homes on the tour in Dayton’s Bluff include 689 Conway St., which was rehabilitated by Historic St. Paul; 995 Beech St. and 737 Fifth St. E., both formerly condemned, now rehabilitated homes; 1125 Burns Ave., which the owner shares through Airbnb; 1115 E. McLean Ave., a newly constructed “smart home” by Dayton’s Bluff Neighborhood Housing Services; and 179 E. Urban Place, an almost-tiny home of 700 square feet.

In the Payne-Phalen neighborhood, Romi Slowiak and Bill Zajicek have included their home in the tour, which is the former Weequah Canoe Club. Built in 1922, the former social club was converted to a home in 1944.

Dayton’s Bluff Neighborhood Housing Services will also feature one of it’s newly constructed Village on Rivoli homes during the tour in Railroad Island.

For more information about art crawl events happening across the city visit www.saintpaulartcrawl.org. For more information about the home tour visit www.msphometour.com.


– Marjorie Otto can be reached at 651-748-7816 or at eastside@lillienews.com. Follow her on Twitter at @EastSideM_Otto

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