Community Conversations, Brown Bag, Birthday Party and More

Upcoming Twin Cities Media Alliance events this month include community conversations about how best to keep and create good jobs for Minnesota’s workforce; a celebration of the Daily Planet’s fifth birthday; a brown bag conversation about what the iPad means for journalism (with a free book offer for all who attend); and a citizen journalism class on using online tools such as Facebook and YouTube. Scroll down for details, and our editors’ reports.

The New Normal: Deciding Community Priorities in a Downsized Economy is the Daily Planet’s year-long project of news stories and community conversations, funded by the Bush Foundation, devoted to finding solutions to new economic challenges in our communities. We’re tackling a different topic every month. Here’s project manager Lisa Peterson-de la Cueva’s report  on our April New Normal conversations:

Thanks to all of those who came and provided great insight at our three community conversations on the state state budget last month. And we were glad the Joint Religious Legislative Coalition and Growth and Justice co-hosted with the Twin Cities Daily Planet. Click here if you’d like to read last month’s coverage of the state budget.

“Next Up, Work and Jobs! We’ll be asking participants, “What’s the best way to secure work and good jobs for Minnesotans in the future?” Check out our May calendar of community conversations  if you would like to attend. We’d love your help! If your organizations would like to co-host a community conversation on work and jobs (May) or health care (June) contact

Just a reminder: The Daily Planet is turning five, and we’re celebrating on May 17 with a birthday bash and happy hour.
When: Tuesday, May 17, from 5 to 7 p.m.
Where: T’s Place, 2713 East Lake Street, Minneapolis
Who: Everyone is welcome, and there’s no charge.

Join TCDP editors, writers, photographers, videographers, media partners, readers and some special guests, for birthday cake, drinks, and conversation.  Jimmi and the Band of Souls will provide the music. T’s Place has great happy hour specials – domestic beers for $2.50; imports, wine by the glass, and mixed drinks for $3.

We are launching our 2011 membership campaign this month. If you want to renew (has it been over a year since your last donation?) or to join up for the first time, you can do so now by going to, and making a donation in any amount. We can also help you with a membership at the door on May 17. If you do choose to join up or renew your membership, we’ll buy you a beer (or other beverage) and enter you in a drawing for some nifty prizes, including a pair of tickets to Cirque de Soleil’s OVO show. To RSVP, simply reply to this email. If you have a Facebook account, you can also visit our Facebook Birthday Party event pageand invite your friends to come, too – the more the merrier. Or just show up – that’s okay, too.Parking is available at meters, and in the Holy Trinity Lutheran Church parking lot, across from US Bank between 29th and 28th Avenues. (Do not park in the East Lake Public Library lot – you may be towed.)

Brown Bag with Julio Ojeda-Zapata

Do you have an iPad? Do you wish you did? Do you wonder what impact the iPad 2 and other tablets will have on the future of journalism. Please join us for this month’s Brown Bag program,  to be held Wednesday, May 25 at noon at the East Lake Public Library, 2727 E. Lake St., Minneapolis. This month’s featured guest is Julio Ojeda-Zapata, editor, blogger, consumer technology columnist and award-winning reporter for the St. Paul Pioneer Press, a MediaNews Group newspaper. Julio is a nerd. A native of Quito, Ecuador, he was raised in San Juan, P.R., and he now lives in St. Paul with his wife and son. Everybody who comes to this presentation will receive a complimentary pdf copy of Julio’s newest book, ‘iPad Means Business,’ a book about how the Apple tablet became an essential work and school tool.

(Classes are free, but donations are gratefully accepted. )
Hands On: Citizen Journalism 201
May 18
Rondo Community Outreach Library, 461 N. Dale, St. Paul

Week Four: Adding value on-line – links, interactivity, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr (May 18, Electronic Classroom). You are welcome to come even if you have not attended the previous sessions.
Editors Reports: 

Daily Planet Editor Mary Turck reports:

Big news this month: continuing New Normal coverage of the state budget and a roll-out of our new our new weekly columns feature – check it out! We have Behind the Story with Sheila Regan on Mondays, Sounding off on Sound with Dwight Hobbes on Tuesdays, Iggers Digest with Jeremy Iggers on Wednesdays, Front Row Seat with Jay Gabler on Thursdays, and News Day with Mary Turck on Fridays. We also have two sets of classes: Hands On: Citizen Journalism 201 began April 20, and continues on May 18 at Rondo Community library at 6:30 p.m., and Digital Storytelling at Corcoran Neighborhood Group, a Spanish-language class that is engaging Mujeres en Acción y Poder.

Arts Editor Jay Gabler reports:

We’ve seen enthusiastic response to our Minneapolis-St. Paul International Film Fest rating and review pages—if you’ve been to MSPIFF, or if you’re considering going, stop by, read up, and weigh in! We’ve also been making use of a grant from Google to promote our coverage via advertisements linked to searches; this has especially boosted traffic to our growing movie coverage. We’re also working to implement a slideshow function that will allow us to showcase our amazing photography—especially of live music—in a bigger, better way than you’ll find on any other local news site. Watch this space!

You can support our work by donating to the Twin Cities Media Alliance through the donation website, (  If you prefer, you can send a check to TCMA, 2600 E. Franklin, suite #2, Minneapolis MN 55406.

Jeremy Iggers
executive director

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