Debra Keefer Ramage

Debra Keefer Ramage began writing freelance for Southside Pride in 2012, shortly after returning from a 13-year sojourn in England. She covers progressive politics, education, co-ops and neighborhoods. In 2017 she started doing Southside Pride’s restaurant review column, The Dish.


Selby Avenue St. Paul in the 2020 Weirds

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE   The western origin point of Selby Avenue in St. Paul is only three blocks west of the river, but the avenue doesn’t start to get interesting until it crosses Fairview (going east) with a tricky-to-maneuver dogleg. It rambles on straightly eastward to Cathedral Hill and…

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Chicago and 48th Street area in the 2020 Weirds

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Fortunes on the part of Chicago Avenue south of 44th Street have been varied during the COVID-19 pandemic and the period of civil unrest in late May through mid-June. This area is mainly residential, with a concentrated commercial hub between 46th and 49th Streets. There is…

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Chicago Avenue bears the brunt of the storm 2020

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Since May 25, 2020, Chicago Avenue in South Minneapolis will forever be associated in history with the “George Floyd uprising.” In fact, the exact location where the murder of Floyd occurred, 38th Street and Chicago Avenue South, is unofficially renamed George Floyd Square (and making that…

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Grand Avenue St. Paul in the 2020 Weirds

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Similar to Highland Park, the Grand Avenue environs of St. Paul were less affected by the property violence associated with the uprisings about Justice for George Floyd. But not totally unaffected. One of our featured businesses had their much-anticipated reopening delayed because their windows were smashed…

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Lyndale Avenue South in the 2020 Weirds

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Lyndale Avenue South seems to be doing pretty well, all things considered. Lyndale is a long avenue, stretching from Brooklyn Center to Bloomington (the city, not the avenue). We are focusing on the segment from Franklin Avenue southward to about 60th Street. I found myself being…

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Highland Park and St. Paul in COVID times

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE As we have been doing since March, this week’s focus on St. Paul’s Highland Park will be a geographical guide to services available and businesses open (or not) due to COVID-19. In addition, we will talk a bit about libraries, and a bit about homelessness in…

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Richfield’s 66th Street in COVID-19 and beyond

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Compared to the parts of South Minneapolis I usually frequent, the area around Lake Nokomis and southward into Richfield looks placid and untouched. I’m sure there is trauma there too, but at least there weren’t as many fires or as much looting. If you get to…

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Cedar Avenue and environs during the 2020 weirds

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE I encountered the above description of this time of this year and I … couldn’t really do better, so I’m “borrowing” it. Actually, things look a lot more normal on Cedar Avenue than most places in South Minneapolis, although nowhere is immune to the changes. Which…

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East Franklin Avenue in COVID-19 and BLM Times

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Two weeks ago, we covered the part of Franklin Avenue west of Cedar Avenue. They were having some hard times but meeting the challenges with the resilience borne of centuries of standing against settler colonialism. Some of the denizens of this issue’s focus, the part from…

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Longfellow/Seward Healthy Seniors in time of need

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE Longfellow/Seward Healthy Seniors (LSHS) is a nonprofit that helps seniors live their most healthy and independent lives, following the “Living at Home / Block Nurse” model. It is one of three such programs in Minneapolis, the other two being Nokomis Healthy Seniors and Southeast Seniors. LSHS…

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How has Nicollet Avenue fared so far?

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE On May 30, the fifth night of all-night protests and associated property damage responding to the racist murder by police of George Floyd, attention turned to the 5th Precinct police station at Nicollet Avenue South and 31st Street. The 3rd Precinct station had been abandoned by…

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Minnehaha Avenue in COVID-19 times

BY DEBRA KEEFER RAMAGE To my way of thinking, the good news is that the Midtown Farmers Market Saturday market started right on time, in early May. If you haven’t been yet, you should go. Geek Love Cafe had been closed, but at some point in late April or May,…

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