Not-Norwalk photos: NoN in Minneapolis

From left, Chapman Hyperlocal Media Board members Claire Schoen and Nancy Chapman, Friday in The Mall of America. (Claire Schoen)

NORWALK, Conn. — Claire Schoen was annoyed that Norwalk hadn’t had any snow this year, so she suggested we go to Minneapolis. Of course, I said yes.

No, that’s not what happened. We were invited to Minneapolis for Shop Talk, a gathering of small nonprofit news organizations. Of course, we said yes, joking at the lunacy of heading to Minnesota in late February. Who wouldn’t?

Don’t worry, we’re not staying.

Shop Talk gathered leaders of six hyperlocal publications founded within the last decade and serving geographic areas of 20,000 to 100,000 people. The goal was to “exchange ideas and best practices for journalistic impact, financial health and organizational resilience.” Expenses were paid by the Institute for Nonprofit News (INN) and an anonymous donor.

They were looking for “scrappy” news sites, they said. We’re honored.

Nancy Chapman with the Mary Tyler Moore statute, Friday in Minneapolis. The intended joke: It’s too cold to take the hat off! Are you crazy?? (Claire Schoen)

Claire and I added a day so we could sight-see; stops included The Mall of America, George Floyd Square, The Walker Art Museum and a statue of Mary Tyler Moore.

Our plane took off Thursday from Laguardia without delay, despite the snowpopcalypse you may have heard about. I was surprised to see clear pavement everywhere as we landed. We’ve been told we hit it just right – there was a little window of availability, and we were in it. Our hosts said the snow was intermittent, allowing snowplow drivers to clear the streets before it started again.

Another participant was not so lucky. The smaller plane he was in didn’t have enough fuel to fight the headwinds and had to land in Milwaukee, where he spent the night. We were two-thirds through the first day when he arrived.

Minneapolis had 71 inches of snow this winter, well over the average of 45, our hosts said.

I decided to run these photos today. Back to Norwalk news tomorrow.

Information added, 4 p.m.


We were told this is the place where George Floyd died. (Nancy Chapman)


George Floyd Square. We were told the area changes every day. The City of Minneapolis is considering buying the Square property, our hosts said. (Nancy Chapman)


Minneapolis got about 17 inches of snow, we were told. (Nancy Chapman)


Claire Schoen crosses over a highway, Friday in Minneapolis. (Nancy Chapman)


Friday in The Mall of America. (Claire Schoen)


Friday in The Mall of America. Not shown: The Caribou Coffee joint we enjoyed. (Claire Schoen)


Claire Schoen shares thoughts, Saturday during Shop Talk. (Nancy Chapman)


I bought new luggage after last year’s trip to Maui. Much better. (Claire Schoen)


A mural in George Floyd Square. (Nancy Chapman)


A mural in George Floyd Square, reportedly the site of his death in 2020. A reporter who lives five blocks away called it “the summer of helicopters.” Choppers carrying news crews and police were always overhead, he said. (Claire Schoen)


A mural in George Floyd Square. (Claire Schoen)


8 responses to “Not-Norwalk photos: NoN in Minneapolis”

  1. Jason Christopher

    The Mall of America is an amazing place!

  2. Diane Lauricella

    Well-deserved! Congratulations on achieving this level of recognition and thanks for the photo tour and sense of journalistic humor!

  3. Kay Anderson

    Nancy & Claire – thanks for sharing what looks to have been a great trip!

  4. Audrey Cozzarin

    Congratulations, Nancy and Claire, on this unique distinction and what looks like a real trip of a lifetime in many ways!

  5. Stephen Keogh

    My favorite spots in the Mall of America are the marker showing the exact location of home plate at Metropolitan Stadium, the home of the Twins and the Vikings, that was torn down to make way for the Mall, and the red chair mounted on a wall, a couple stories up an 520 feet away from home plate, marking where Harmon Killebrew hit the longest home run ever in that stadium in June of 1967. https://youtu.be/_2wW4ANkA4w

  6. Barbara Meyer-Mitchell

    So glad you made the trip – looks like so much fun! Maybe Miami next February?

  7. Alex Moran

    Northern lights? Perhaps not, but two stars for sure!!

  8. Jen Stevens

    Wow what a fabulous event, well worth the snow trek, glad you two could get there and thanks for all of the wonderful shots!

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