That's a big giant bow on the top of our first season of The Warming House, friends. And, boy oh boy, did we go out in a blaze of glory! For starters, thanks to Gov. Tim Walz and his State of the State address, we were able to get an extra half-hour of airtime for ourselves!
In that time, we heard from Dana Thompson of The Sioux Chef about Owamni, their new restaurant along the banks of the Mississippi River, opening soon. And Professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University, Anton Treuer, came with a story about a group of naked folks in the woods outside Princeton, N.J., that we won't soon forget.
Co-host Sean McPherson's Jewish mother-in-law and a friend of The Current played a little Passover trivia and we also welcomed two liquor store clerks in from Sharrett's in St. Paul for a friendly game that stumped the players with this question: "One of the most popular Polish whiskeys is named after one of the most popular classical composers from Poland. What is that shared name?" (Answer: Chopin)
Co-host Nina Moini caught up with the folks at the Lower Phalen Creek Project and the Minnesota Indian Women's Resource Center to chat about the medicine bundles they're putting together to keep Native communities healthy during the pandemic. And we had our advice guru, Sanni Brown, live and in person in the studio taking calls! After we finished gushing over Sanni's ability to keep it real, she did just that.
The biggest moment of the night was when Sean announced the winner of our Great Minnesota Burger Bracket! With trumpets and fanfare, we crowned The Rusty Nail in Battle Lake with the Best Burger of 2021! Our Big Announcer said it best: The Rusty Nail is "the pride of Otter Tail County! Sitting on Eat Street in historic Battle Lake, Zac and Brianna Lewis serve the tastiest burger this side of the World's Largest Catfish in Wahpeton, ND, to locals and tourists alike. The burgers come on brioche buns with a vast array of fixings for the topping-curious. Served with a frosty local ale, it doesn't get any better in Minnesota than the burgers from The Rusty Nail in Battle Lake." Congratulations to The Rusty Nail!
Our vinyl pick for the night was "The Last Waltz" by The Band. If you were lucky enough to be at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco on Thanksgiving Day in 1976, you saw an epic concert by The Band with a slew of guest appearances, including: Bob Dylan, Neil Diamond, Joni Mitchell, Dr. John, Van Morrison, Muddy Waters, Ronnie Wood and even Ringo Starr. And the whole thing was documented by filmmaker Martin Scorcese. “Epic” doesn’t even begin to describe this three-album live concert collection. Sean said of the guest line up that "when they called out The Band got some legends, but none as otherworldly as seeing Muddy Waters, the pioneer of the electric blues, join them on stage. It’s moments like this that make this concert amazing." It sure made our last night of the season in The Warming House a memorable one too!
Dana Thompson, co-owner of The Sioux Chef and executive director of Natifs.org
Anton Treuer, professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University
Helen Levitt and David Alspector, Passover trivia contestants
Pete Bergstrom and Cheyanne January from Sharrett's in St. Paul
Advice guru from The Current and Purple Current, Sanni Brown
Mishaila Bowman, cultural programming coordinator, Lower Phalen Creek Project
Sheila Zephier, director of community engagement, Minnesota Indian Women's Resource Center
Former Jeopardy contestant Amal Karim
Our Burger Bracket Announcer Guy Tim Russell
Zac and Brianna Lewis, owners of The Rusty Nail in Battle Lake
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