Searching for a few signs that spring will, in fact, come again


Cheer up! Just 73 days until spring officially arrives again on March 20. (It's unlikely that the daffodils will be up by then, but the cheery yellow posy is the official floral emblem of the month of March. And, tell the truth, don't you kind of like to look at it?)

It required some diligent digging, but there are signs that the season of renewal will come again. From the deep freeze, think about a baseball game, a beverage on a new outdoor patio and a picnic beneath a spreading ash tree.

The Associated Press noted that single-game tickets for Minnesota Twins spring training games go on sale Jan. 11. The schedule features 31 games — 16 at home and 15 on the road. The Twins start Grapefruit League play with a road game against the defending World Series Champion Boston Red Sox on Feb. 28.

The Journal reported that a restaurant in northeast Minneapolis is planning a major addition that will include the addition of a rooftop patio with a full service bar. Stanley’s Northeast Bar Room will also add indoor seating for large groups and double the size of its kitchen.

“With the way it is now in Northeast with popular bar crawls and large groups it will be beneficial to have extra space for some larger tables,” said said Stanley’s General Manager Luke Derheim.

The Pioneer Press had a story to prompt readers to think about a glorious -- and healthy -- ash tree in full bloom.

The state's billion ash trees are threatened by emerald ash borers, an invasive pest that showed up in Minnesota in 2009. But the trip to the deep freeze may slow their presence. The story notes that when temperature fall to minus 30, nearly all the larvae die. Research from the state Department of Agriculture indicates that 5 percent of larvae die at 0 degrees, 34 percent at 10 below, 79 percent at 20 below and 98 percent at minus 30.

In 2009, the ash borers' first year in the state, temperatures dropped to around 30 below zero, and roughly 90 percent of the larvae died.

Come on, vernal equinox!

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