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Tour: Markets and Communities

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Wednesday, October 18, 2017, 10:30 am--3:00 pm

Peter Harle (University of Minnesota), leader

Immigrants and refugees in the Minneapolis/Saint Paul area have long created and been sustained by marketplaces. Rich with traditional foods, clothing, music, art, and materials for magic, healing, and religion, these are key social spaces, and are vital sources for culturally significant goods. This tour will visit several such markets.

  • Mercado Central, a cooperative, formed in part to protect Mexican and Central American small-scale merchants from increasing rent on Lake Street. 
  • Ingebretsen's, a 96-year-old Twin Cities favorite, began as a family-run grocery, and soon became a much-loved source for household goods, gifts, and treats connected with Scandinavian heritage.  
  • Karmel Square is home to the largest concentration of Somali businesses outside of Somalia. It also houses a mosque and school to meet the needs of its vendors and customers. 
  • Hmongtown Marketplace, a sprawling indoor/outdoor complex, was formed when a massive construction project threatened many Hmong-run stores in Saint Paul's Frogtown neighborhood.  

Get out of the downtown zone, and experience the rich diversity of this region! Whether you simply enjoy strolling through these markets, or fill your bags with textiles, amulets and dvds of traditional performers, this is a great chance to get to know the Twin Cities better. Lunch will not be provided, but there will be many opportunities to purchase food along the way.  

The tour bus will pick up and drop off at the main entrance of the Marriott City Center.

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