Stories from June 11, 2024

Alissa Pili signs with N7, talks Indigenous fan support
Although she’s still adjusting to the WNBA’s intense pace and starting with a new team, Pili said the support she’s received has only grown since playing professionally as a member of the Minnesota Lynx.
‘The best weekend of my life‘: Minneapolis Chef Christina Nguyen lifts up family after big award night
Minneapolis-based chef Christina Nguyen reflects on her experiences after winning being named the Best Chef in the Midwest by the James Beard Foundation.
State agencies allowed pandemic cash to go to ineligible Minnesotans, Legislative Auditor finds 
The Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor says the Department of Labor and Industry did not comply with some state requirements for the Frontline Worker Pay Program leading to many ineligible individuals getting paid pandemic-era funds.
Federal appeals court weighs challenge to Iowa ban on books with sexual content from schools
Attorneys for LGBTQ+ youth, teachers and major publishers have asked a federal appeals court to affirm a lower court order that blocked key parts of an Iowa law banning books depicting sex acts from school libraries and classrooms.
Thousands attended a memorial service for fallen Minneapolis police officer Jamal Mitchell today. Mitchell joined the department in 2022, after the murder of George Floyd and while Mitchell was in his mid-30s, telling city officials he wished to be the change he wanted to see in policing. And the Minnesota Office of the Legislative Auditor found that the Department of Labor and Industry did not comply with state requirements for paying frontline workers during the pandemic.
Can the U.S. force a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas?
The U.S. continues to push a cease-fire proposal outlined last month, and on Monday the U.N. Security council passed a U.S.-drafted resolution supporting that deal. NPR's Michele Kelemen and Daniel Estrin help us get a sense of what this weekend's events might mean for the war and its ending.
How 2 unexpected wars are defining Biden's presidency
President Biden pulled U.S. troops out of Afghanistan and showed no desire for other military adventures. But the unexpected wars in Ukraine and Gaza have become defining issues of his presidency.
‘It’s a loss’: The State Fair Foundation sunsets the Commemorative Art program
The Minnesota State Fair’s Commemorative Art program, which began in 2004 and featured work from 19 artists to expand connections to the arts community and generate revenue, has ended.
Power Pair: Brothers Anton Treuer and David Treuer on writing and Ojibwe culture
MPR News host Angela Davis talks with brothers Anton Treuer and David Treuer about their latest books, reclaiming Ojibwe culture and growing up together on the Leech Lake Reservation in northern Minnesota.  
President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, is convicted of all 3 felonies in federal gun trial
Hunter Biden has been convicted of all three felony charges related to the purchase of a revolver in 2018 when, prosecutors argued, the president’s son lied on a mandatory gun-purchase form by saying he was not illegally using or addicted to drugs.
Prince collaborator Sheila E. says she’s ’heartbroken’ at being turned away from Paisley Park
Sheila E. figured she’d be welcome if she showed up unannounced at Paisley Park, the studio where the percussionist once collaborated with her mentor and one-time fiancée, the late rock superstar Prince. She was wrong.
Morning showers, spotty thunder later Tuesday. More storms Wednesday
Showers will continue to track east with decreasing clouds west to east Tuesday morning into midday. Isolated storms are possible later in the day with strong storms possible Wednesday.
Thousands of police officers from across the state are attending a memorial service for Minneapolis police officer Jamal Mitchell Tuesday. And Minneapolis chef Christina Nguyen has won the James Beard award for Best Chef of the Midwest. She serves southeast Asian street food at Hai Hai in Minneapolis.
Lewis homers to back sharp outing by Paddack as Twins beat Rockies 5-0
Royce Lewis homered in the eighth inning to break open the game, and Chris Paddack bounced back from a rough outing with a sharp performance to lift the Minnesota Twins to a 5-0 victory over the Colorado Rockies on Monday night.
U.S. gas prices are falling. Experts point to mild demand at the pump ahead of summer travel
Gas prices are once again on the decline across the U.S. That's bringing some relief to drivers now paying a little less to fill up their tanks. The AAA motor club says the national average for gas prices on Monday stood around $3.44 a gallon.
What’s a book ban anyway? Depends on who you ask
The term "book ban" is used a lot in media and elsewhere when addressing the rise in challenges to certain books being allowed in schools and public libraries. But is it more political hyperbole or a censorship alarm bell?
PWHL Minnesota stirs up controversy with draft pick, recent leadership changes
Minnesota came into the night under some controversy. The team parted ways with General Manager Natalie Darwitz last week, which was a bit shocking after the team won the first ever PWHL championship. The controversy did not stop there. Minnesota’s second pick overall brought a lot of criticism online.
Minnesota poll: Felony conviction should disqualify presidential candidates, most say
The finding comes less than two weeks after former President Donald Trump was convicted of 34 felony counts related to his hush money case. Trump and President Joe Biden are expected to face off in a rematch this fall.
Minnesota Chippewa Tribe voters head to the polls to determine next phase of leadership
Minnesota Chippewa Tribe voters head to the polls Tuesday to elect leadership across the six member nations. Tribal leaders consider issues related to regional and state politics, including cannabis dispensaries and grow facilities and the restoration of tribal lands. 
‘Big hole in my heart’: How two siblings mended a rift after one came out
Siblings Forest Clarke and Anne Downs grew up feeling like twins born two years apart. But when Clarke came out, a chasm grew in this once close relationship. A global pandemic, a letter and years of introspection brought them back together.
'God needed a hero': Mourners honor the life of officer Jamal Mitchell
Through songs, prayers and stories, Minneapolis police officer Jamal Mitchell was remembered warmly as someone who always looked out for others, who stood true to the belief that “the only time you look down on a man is when you’re picking them up.”
A Minnesota principal banned cellphones from her school — and it worked
Like principals around the country, Amy Kujawski knew cellphones and schools didn’t mix. This year, she found a fix that worked for students, teachers and families. It could be a model for Minnesota.
What does a downtown rebound look like? More residents and weekend visitors
Ever since the start of the pandemic, the futures of America’s big-city downtowns have been in question. Philadelphia is just one example of a center city finding new ways to thrive.
The WNBA, capturing excitement around Caitlin Clark, boasts more viewers than ever
With record attendance and viewership, the WNBA seems to have capitalized on the explosion of interest in women's basketball driven in large part by Clark, who is now a rookie with the Indiana Fever.
A dog traveled nearly 4 miles to get help after its owner crashed into a ravine
The man was traveling with his four dogs when he ran off a remote road into a ravine in Oregon. One dog returned to where the man was camping with family, alerting them that something was wrong.
PWHL Minnesota selects Canadian defenseman Claire Thompson with 3rd draft pick
Thompson is a Canadian national team player who took last season off to focus on medical school. The pick was made by coach Ken Klee, who is overseeing the draft after the PWHL stripped general manager Natalie Darwitz of her title.