Most talked about Pioneer Press stories

Tiny holiday town comes alive in Mendota Heights home each year

twincities.com — Posted: 11/28/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/28/2014 01:50:40 PM CST Every year about this time, a snow-covered New England village comes to life inside Milt Hildebrandt's home. Lights glow from the windows of the houses, shops and churches. Trains wind through the landscape. Children are skating.

Best Buy website down after surge in mobile Black Friday traffic

twincities.com — Posted: 11/28/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/28/2014 10:48:47 AM CST Best Buy on Black Friday said it was forced to take its website offline when a surge in mobile traffic created problems that it said required a shut-down on what is a crucial day in the holiday-shopping season.
Nov 28, 2014

RT @JosephLindberg: Best Buy website down after surge in mobile #BlackFriday traffic: pipr.es/1yrf23j @ojezap is keeping tabs on the mayhem today

Split state power tempers Minnesota GOP's health care plans

twincities.com — By Kyle PotterAssociated Press Posted: 11/27/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/27/2014 09:34:08 PM CST After two years of vilifying the federal health overhaul and the state's health insurance exchange, Minnesota Republicans face Democratic opposition in the Senate and governor's office that will scale back their hopes for a wholesale makeover.

Timberwolves: Ryan Saunders grows with the game, and it with him

twincities.com — Posted: 11/27/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/27/2014 07:19:08 PM CST Forty minutes before every game, Washington Wizards point guard John Wall would find Ryan Saunders. It was time for their ball-handling routine. Before passing to Wall for him to mirror, Saunders would start a dribbling pattern: left hand, then right, left, right, between the legs, behind the back.
Nov 27, 2014

If turkey's tryptophan ain't tripping you up, here's a #Twolves story on Ryan Saunders disproving calls of nepotism. twincities.com/timberwolves/c…

James Onwualu keeps Notre Dame, Cretin-Derham Hall pipeline in business

twincities.com — Posted: 11/27/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/27/2014 08:20:31 PM CST SOUTH BEND, Ind. -- When James Onwualu is out and about at Notre Dame, it's never routine. Onwualu goes by some of the most notable sites on any American campus. Sometimes, he says, he has to pinch himself.

Holiday shopping in the Twin Cities: Let the deals begin

twincities.com — We're watching Thanksgiving night and Black Friday shopping activity in the Twin Cities and posting cool stuff we find.

Gophers football: 'Unflappable' Mitch Leidner ready for a championship

twincities.com — Posted: 11/27/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/27/2014 03:37:08 PM CST After he played well in a loss at Michigan last season, Mitch Leidner expected to be the University of Minnesota's quarterback for years to come. "I think I can start the rest of the year," Leidner, then a redshirt freshman starter, said at the time.

Tom Powers: Win or lose, Gophers have had remarkable season

twincities.com — Posted: 11/27/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/27/2014 10:25:05 AM CST A month ago the sky was falling. Today the heavens seem very secure. "It's really unbelievable what our kids have done," Jerry Kill said. Yes, and it's been a long road from there to here.
Nov 27, 2014

RT @PioneerPress: Tom Powers says that, no matter what happens Saturday in Madison, this Gophers season has been one heck of a ride. pipr.es/1voKmh6

Ferguson grand jury papers full of inconsistencies

twincities.com — By Holbrook Mohr, David A. Lieb And Phillip Lucas Associated Press Posted: 11/27/2014 10:22:38 AM CST Updated: 11/27/2014 10:22:40 AM CST Click photo to enlarge FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) - Some witnesses said Michael Brown had been shot in the back. Another said he was face-down on the ground when Officer Darren Wilson "finished him off."
Nov 27, 2014

RT @PioneerPress: Ferguson grand jury documents were full of inconsistencies. Examples: pipr.es/1vSNO6R

Nov 27, 2014

#Twolves Now blog: Postgame notes from #Bucks 103, #Twolves 86. Shabazz Muhammad finding himself in the wrong spots. blogs.twincities.com/timberwolves/2…

Nov 26, 2014

RT @MikeBerardino: Terry Ryan re: Torii Hunter: "We're looking for people that can play the game. I'm worried about production." blogs.twincities.com/twins/2014/11/…

Nov 26, 2014

Terry Ryan re: Torii Hunter: "We're looking for people that can play the game. I'm worried about production." blogs.twincities.com/twins/2014/11/…

Minnesota Wild's sluggish start costly in 4-0 loss to Kings

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 09:52:16 PM CST The first-intermission buzzer hadn't yet sounded when Wild goalie Darcy Kuemper lifted his big paddle high in the air and smashed it against the ice like an ax chopping wood.
Nov 27, 2014

Before the first period ended, the #mnwild trailed 4-0 and Darcy Kuemper slammed his stick against the ice. Story: twincities.com/sports/ci_2702…

Gophers football: David Cobb does not practice

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 07:30:03 PM CST Running back David Cobb worked with trainers and strength coaches Wednesday, but he didn't practice with the Gophers football team and won't Thursday. That doesn't bode well for his participation in Saturday's game at 14th-ranked Wisconsin (9-2), which leads the Big Ten's West Division at 6-1.

Ready, set, shop: Black Friday made easy

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 08:28:09 PM CST This year, Black Friday shopping will: -- Start early: Most malls open at 6 p.m. Thanksgiving, their earliest Black Friday start ever. Best Buy and a handful of other stores open at 5 p.m.

Minnesota Wild: Well-worn gear a staple for many

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 05:24:06 PM CST One the day he turned 32 and played in his 600th career regular-season game, Wild defenseman Keith Ballard turned and looked proudly at the hockey gear hanging in his locker stall. The equipment is tattered and ripped and discolored.
Nov 27, 2014

Yesterday was Keith Ballard's 600th game. It was also the 600th for much of his gear. Fun story on hockey equipment: twincities.com/wild/ci_270194…

Nov 26, 2014

Keith Ballard plays in his 600th game tonight. He's kept the same gear all 600. A fun look at players' equipment: twincities.com/wild/ci_270194…

St. Paul officer's graveside decorations stolen in Stillwater

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 05:38:07 PM CST The family of St. Paul police officer Josh Lynaugh is asking for extra patrol inside Fairview Cemetery in Stillwater after a Christmas tree with blue LED lights was stolen from their son's gravesite. The tree and lights, which were valued at $150, were stolen sometime late Nov.
Nov 26, 2014

RT @PioneerPress: Christmas tree stolen from grave of St. Paul police officer Josh Lynaugh: pipr.es/15AQN8l pic.twitter.com/7oA0UQ6C9d

Vikings: Ryan Kalil comes to his brother's defense

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 05:49:18 PM CST Carolina Panthers center Ryan Kalil said his brother, Matt, has been frustrated at times by his play for the Vikings but mostly by the fact that Minnesota hasn't been very good this season. "I talk to him after every game," Ryan said Wednesday on a conference call.

St. Paul man suspected of driving into Ferguson protest

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 04:46:19 PM CST A St. Paul man was driving the vehicle that struck a teen near Lake Street and Minnehaha Avenue during a Ferguson protest in Minneapolis on Tuesday evening, according to a police report.

St. Paul teens work off library fees with fun tasks

twincities.com — Posted: 11/26/2014 12:01:00 AM CST Updated: 11/26/2014 04:29:22 PM CST St. Paul Public Library to teenagers with accumulated fines and fees: "You are hereby absolved of your debts! Go forth and sin no more!" But there's a catch. You knew there'd be a catch, right? Instead of just paying off their fines, the St.
Nov 26, 2014

RT @PioneerPress: St. Paul library offering teens a chance to work off library fees with fun tasks - pipr.es/15AAFUl