Memorial planned for final Rondo neighborhood building on November 2
Memorial services are being planned by Rondo Avenue, Inc. (RAI) for one of the last two remaining members of the original Rondo neighborhood family of buildings in St. Paul, which succumbed suddenly to the wrecking ball on Saturday, September 18. The building at 820-822 Rondo Avenue was 97 years old. It was preceded in destruction by more than 80 siblings, who developed terminal cases of eminent domain beginning in the late 1950s. The building was born on the corner of Rondo and Fisk in 1916 and served as the home of Emmett McGill’s Grocery Store until 1957. Continue Reading →
R&B stalwarts Mint Condition will perform at the 30th Annual Rondo Days Festival Celebration on Saturday, July 20th at the Rondo Education Center’s Field at 560 Concordia Avenue in St. Paul. The festivities will begin with a 5K Walk & Run, a parade, and will be followed by the opening ceremonies featuring invited guests: Mayor Chris Coleman, Ramsey County Commissioner Toni Carter, Minnesota House of Representatives Rena Moran, and Rondo Days founders Marvin Roger Anderson and Floyd G. Smaller. In addition to Mint Condition, the entertainment will also feature other local artists, bands, dance and spoken-word performances. A schedule of entertainment and a listing of the artists is available at www.RondoAvenueInc.org or www.Facebook.com/RondoAvenueInc.
It was a banner year in 2012 for R&B’s hottest band, Mint Condition, who celebrated their 20th anniversary that year. Continue Reading →
Program recreates Black neighborhood of past for MN youth
By Charles Hallman
Minnesota History Center Program Assistant Dwight Scott often uses in his classes a former resident’s quote that every time she drives on Interstate 94, “I feel like I’m driving over my bedroom.”
“This was a story that [Interstate 94] was a neighborhood before all this was there,” notes Scott on the construction of the freeway that led to the devastation of the once-vibrant Rondo neighborhood that during the 1930s was the heart of St. Paul’s Black community. Rondo had “a different kind of vibrant activity there…a sense of camaraderie among different races,” says Scott. It is featured in “Uncovering Rondo” as part of the History Center’s “Neighborhood Access Initiative” educational program for youngsters to learn about their neighborhoods while visiting the center. Scott says today’s youngsters are often surprised when they learn that the freeway wasn’t always there. Continue Reading →