Updated: 06/25/2014 10:54 AM
Created: 06/24/2014 8:28 PM WDIO.com
By: Travis Dill
Many groups in Duluth are striving to make the city healthier, and four are vying for community votes that could mean $10,000 in funding. The first Healthy Duluth Ideas Festival kicked off Tuesday night.
The Zeppa Foundation hosted the event to help decide what healthy ideas to fund.
“So the Healthy Duluth Ideas Festival is all about how we invest in our community and design our community in a way that will be healthy for everybody,” Executive Director Tony Cuneo said.
He invited community members to hear presentations from Cyclists of Gitchee Gummee Shores, Seeds of Success, the Health and Wellness Table and the Healthy Duluth Area Coalition. About 70 people turned out and ranked their ideas.
Cuneo said this type of brainstorming and project funding is needed because health isn't equitable in Duluth. He said your ZIP code can mean a shorter lifespan.
“In two neighborhoods less than five miles apart you might see life expectancies that are a decade or more different,” Cuneo said.
He said poverty and neighborhoods lacking access to grocery stores, in turn lacking healthy foods, causes some of the disparity.
The Lincoln Park Farmers' Market is providing access to fresh vegetables, but Seeds of Success program manger Michael Latsch wants to do more.
“We've seen other producers have great success selling value-added products like salsas, tomato sauces, jams, things like that there and we want to expand the quantity of food that's available at market so we're looking to get into the business,” Latsch said.
He said a little money can help them buy the cooking supplies they need to bring healthier options to the community, but he was only one presenter at the first Healthy Duluth Idea Festival.
Cuneo hopes the contest will get the community focusing on health equality.
“We really believe that all four of these ideas should be supported by the community, and so we're hoping with or without our award others in the audience will take ownership of some of these other ideas,” Cuneo said.
He said the $10,000 could be split among several groups, but it will take a few days to tally the votes from the audience members.
Cuneo said the ideas presented are only a few of those suggested for the community. More can be found on the Healthy Duluth Area Coalition website.
Cuneo said if there is more interest the Zeppa Foundation could hold more Healthy Duluth Idea Festivals in the future.
Woman Hospitalized after Armed Standoff with Deputies in Douglas County
A 22-year-old Lake Nebagamon woman was hospitalized on Wednesday evening after an armed standoff with the Douglas County Sheriff's Office.
City of Tower Starts Dredging on Multi-Million-Dollar Harbor Project
The City of Tower is starting a new phase of an old dream. Back in June, WDIO's sister station KSTP reported that Tower's multi-million-dollar Harbor Renaissance Project hadn't gone anywhere in seven years. But Wednesday, the City said they're moving forward.
Minnesota Food Charter Launched at DECC
Around five hundred people flocked to the DECC for the Minnesota Statewide Food Access Summit. One of the big events? The launch of the of the Minnesota Food Charter. Only four other states have a food charter, but Food Charter Steering Committee Chair Mindy Kurzer said number five is unique.
Bong Bridge to Reopen Friday
The Duluth-bound lanes of the Richard I. Bong Bridge are expected to reopen Friday morning after a summer of construction. Superior-bound lanes have remained open this year but will be closed next year.
TV Campaign Ads Make Wealth an Issue in Minn. Election
It seems an hour doesn't go by without several television campaign ads criticizing a candidate for having millions of dollars or trying to line his or her pockets at government expense. Class warfare is nothing new in politics, but it certainly is more pronounced in Minnesota this year because of two Republican candidates: Stewart Mills and Mike McFadden. They've been the target of a barrage of attack ads aimed at their personal wealth and how they accumulated it.