Miss Canada's Hockey Costume Is Eh-mazing

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Robynlou Kavanagh
It's like if Cinna grew up in Canada...
Note to future Miss Minnesota winners: The bar for the costume competition has been set.

The Miss Universe pageant doesn't air until Sunday, but yesterday the internet blew up when pictures of Miss Canada's outrageous hockey costume hit social media.

See also:
Backstage at Miss Minnesota [PHOTOS]


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Minnesota Education Plummets to 10th Place in New National Rankings

Categories: Education

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Courtesy of pixabay
Education in Minnesota now trails Maryland, Massacusetts, and Vermont.

Nothing plays more into Minnesota's collective self worth than education.

Perhaps it's time we relied on something else to massage our statewide ego.

Minnesota education ranked 10th among the 50 states and District of Columbia, according to Education Week's "Quality Counts 2015: State Report Cards" rankings compiled by the nonprofit organization Editorial Projects in Education.

See also:
Schoolz Suck


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Homeless Wait 8 Years for Shot at Life-Changing Housing Lottery

Categories: Housing

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Photo by Garry Knight

Rhonda Meyers, her three young children, and her mother ended up on the streets when they couldn't make rent early last year.

First she moved in with some friends, but people were always running in and out and she wanted more peace and stability for her kids. So she toured the shelter circuit, staying at one particularly "nasty" shelter where mice ran in between the mattresses before she was finally transferred to the more family-oriented People Serving People. Meyers, who asked that we not use her real name, has been calling it home for the past three months.

She's got a checklist of all the things you're supposed to do when you find yourself working back-to-back shifts at Wendy's and caring for three kids in a temporary shelter: She's talking to a guidance counselor, keeping on top of low income housing lists, attending job fairs at the library.

It's a long road to a home of her own, but there's hope on the horizon for something that could transform her life overnight.

See also:
Number of Homeless Children at Record High Despite Robust Housing Market


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New MNvest Bill Would Take Homegrown Crowdfunding to the Next Level

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MNvest Facebook
It's like Kickstarter, except instead of donations for goods or services anyone could buy dividend-paying shares in a venture
A new bill introduced in the state Senate last week would allow anyone in Minnesota to support homegrown entrepreneurs by buying a piece of their idea or company.

It's like Kickstarter on steroids. Kickstarter allows backers to prepay for goods or services. This initiative, called MNvest, would legalize crowdfunding equity. Backers buy a stake of an idea, product, or company by purchasing dividend-paying shares to help finance entrepreneurial dreams.

See also:
"Common Man" Dan Cole Documentary Is On Kickstarter


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20,000 Layoffs Predicted in North Dakota Due to Low Oil Prices

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Tim Evanson via Flickr
20,000 layoffs predicted by June
One of the happiest surprises American consumers have experienced lately is ridiculously cheap gas, which is now priced at a five-year low.

While consumers whistle while they pump, signs of a bust in the North Dakota oil fields are beginning to show.

See also:
University of North Dakota Suspends Basketball Announcer For Saying "Choke Job"

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You Can Buy a Jar of Historic Metrodome Garbage for Only $5

Categories: Sports, Twins

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courtesy of Low and Inside, LLC
"It's a nice conversation piece"
Looking for the perfect gift for the massive sports rube in your family? This weekend at TwinsFest Nick Vetter and Joel Bradley will be selling jars of "Domepourri" containing ground-up bits of the demolished Metrodome.

"It's a nice conversation piece and we think it will bring smiles to a lot of faces," said Vetter. "A lot of people have a lot of great memories from the Dome."

See also:
Metrodome Demolition Porn: Top Photos


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U of M Study Finds Climate Change Will Eventually Ruin Minnesota's Forests

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U.S. Department of Agriculture, via Flickr
Trees like this 88-foot, 13,000-pound spruce, which was chosen as the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree this year, are finding it harder to survive in Minnesota
A University of Minnesota study published earlier this week reaffirmed that the thick stands of majestic evergreens defining northern Minnesota's forests are slowly giving way to a patchy mix of oaks and maples. And invasive buckthorn, already a menace in the southern part of the state, is primed to fill in the gaps.

"It's already happening," said U of M forest resources professor Peter Reich, who led the series of experiments dubbed "B4WarmEd." "More oaks and maples are showing up when surveying younger trees than what you would've seen 30 or 40 years ago."

See also:
I Can't Stop Staring at This Forest Shaped Like Minnesota [PHOTO]

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Gas Station TV Conquering -- and Pestering -- America One Pump at a Time

Categories: Technology

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Photo courtesy of Smith & Wesson Forum
Gas Station TV doesn't leave motorists alone at 2,600 locations nationwide and counting.

On a lonely lonesome roadway east of Chisago City, a motorist plunks down a twenty inside Marathon Gas to top off the tank of his Chrysler 200.

Back at the pump with the wind tearing out of the northwest, he lifts on the nozzle and all of a sudden -- DING! -- the gas pump comes to life and starts yakking.

See also:
How far are you willing to go for cheap gas?


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Everyone Wants Net Neutrality, But How Do We Get It Done?

Categories: Technology

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Photo by Free Press

As the long debate over net neutrality closes in on a watershed decision, Republicans and Democrats are scrambling to compromise on how to protect the open internet.

Net neutrality is the idea that the Internet should be a free-for-all informational playground that provides same-speed access to all users, where Exxon and Joe the Plumber have an equal shot at reaching consumers. Without it, internet service providers like Comcast and AT&T could sell priority listings to the highest bidder or block those who don't pay, effectively squeezing out the basement start-up businessman in favor of wealthy corporations.

In countries with questionable free speech, net neutrality overlaps with human rights -- for example China banning Google in order to keep its citizens in the dark about the Tiananmen Square Massacre or Egypt pulling Twitter in the Arab Spring. At home, the regulation of internet companies has embroiled politicians in a finer struggle over how to maintain fair access for all without giving government too much control.

See also:
The fall of net neutrality: Cable's plot to destroy the internet


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Keith Ellison Wants to Bar "Criminal" Corporations from Political Spending

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Center for American Progress Action Fund, via Flickr
How is this not illegal already?
Last year a federal judge found oil giant BP acted with "profit-driven decisions" that amounted to "gross negligence" resulting in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Currently the corporation is in court arguing over the billions in fines it owes in Clean Water Act violations on top of a $4 billion fine it already paid the federal government stemming from criminal charges.

Despite that, BP found a way to come up with nearly $5 million to spend on lobbying and campaign contributions in 2014. In 2013 it spent more than $8 million.

Yesterday Rep. Keith Ellison introduced a bill that would bar "criminal corporations" like BP from political spending for six years after being convicted of any felony involving dishonesty, breach of trust, or defrauding the United States government.

See also:
Bachmann Slams Obama on BP, So We Follow the Money


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