The summer of 2014 has been big for Cedar Avenue.
The President of the United States came and had a Jucy Lucy [yes, it’s spelled Jucy, not Juicy] at Matt’s Bar on 35th and Cedar. Word is he forgot to “Fear the Cheese” and burned his mouth on the molten center. For the uninitiated, a Jucy Lucy is two hamburger patties with melted cheese in the middle.
Obama came to Matt’s to meet with Rebekah Erler, an accountant and mother of two young boys, who wrote to Obama last March after she became frustrated that her day-care bills were more than her house mortgage, she told WCCO. The Jucy Lucy and iced tea with Rebekah was the fact-finding part of his Minneapolis Mission. After lunch, they both left to go to the Town Hall meeting in Minnehaha Park where he answered questions about the economy and flood damage.
At some point he went over to St. Paul, wandered around Grand Avenue and stopped for an ice cream cone at the Grand Ole Creamery. [If he wanted to save the helicopter ride, he could have visited the Minneapolis Grand Ole Creamery at 4737 Cedar, just a few blocks down from Matt’s.]
In a sad and ironic twist, Matt Bristol, the man who started Matt’s in 1954, died on the same day as the President’s visit. He had sold the business many years before but liked to stop back to visit.
Later that night Obama attended a fundraiser for House Democrats at the home of former ambassadors to Morocco Sam and Sylvia Kaplan. Face time with President at that event cost $16,000.
The next day, undoubtedly using the information he gained at Matt’s, he spoke at the Lake Harriet Bandshell about the need to increase the minimum wage.