Peter Smith Feature Archive

Minnesota Public Radio essayist Peter Smith has something to say on this Veteran's day. He would like to thank veterans everywhere -- and one small group of vets in particular. (11/11/2010)
The autumn colors have peaked. The winds have come through. The leaves are down, for the most part. Like tens of thousands of others across the state, essayist Peter Smith finds himself facing an important question: will he rake his yard for himself like a real Minnesotan or will he pay someone to take care of his leaves for him? (10/26/2010)
The search is on for a new Gopher football coach. The University of Minnesota fired coach Tim Brewster Sunday. His team had one win and six losses so far this year, and the schedule only gets tougher from here. There are all kinds of skills and strengths that make up a successful modern-day college football coach. But there's one old-fashioned trait essayist Peter Smith hopes the Gophers don't overlook this time. (10/19/2010)
Twenty-four candidates are on the ballot this November to fill a judges seat in Stillwater, Minnesota. Even if you don't find yourself faced with 24 judicial candidates when you go to vote, it can be difficult to make an informed decision on those less-publicized down-ballot races. What's a Minnesota voter to do? Essayist Peter Smith has a few thoughts about that. (10/11/2010)
October has been glorious so far. But we all know how fickle -- and sometimes haunting -- Minnesota's October weather can be, especially for an old robin, too weak to fly south. (10/05/2010)
Do you have a long, stressful commute to work or school? Maybe your commute has you thinking about changing your job, or your career? Well, Minnesota Public Radio essayist Peter Smith ran into a guy up north who finds peace and happiness on the job every day -- working with one billion year old pieces of granite stone. (09/28/2010)
With November -- and Election Day -- on the horizon, political lawn signs are sprouting all over the Minnesota. They're a time-honored tradition -- literally signs of party unity. But according to essayist Peter Smith, these days you can read them as signs of division too. (09/14/2010)
The freshman class moves into the dorms at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities campus today. Parents will say their tearful goodbyes, head home, and before too long they'll begin to assemble care packages for the kids. Some colleges start earlier than the U, which means some students already have packages coming in the mail. Essayist Peter Smith is amazed at how many subliminal messages his mother-in-law can pack into a single cardboard box. (08/31/2010)
The State Fair opens Thursday, and like most Minnesotans, essayist Peter Smith has his own favorite memory of state fairs past. (08/24/2010)
It's mid-August, and with a new school year looming on the horizon, Minnesota Public Radio essayist Peter Smith has a few words of encouragement for the state's school teachers. (08/17/2010)
It's going to be another hot early August day today. In the farm fields sweet corn is growing rapidly. Back yard tomato plants are going full tilt across the region. But don't look now-- Minnesota essayist Peter Smith says a change is on the way. (08/10/2010)
Peter Smith thought of the Edward Hopper painting called "Nighthawks" around 3:30 the other morning. He couldn't sleep, so he got up, walked over to the computer and got on Facebook. (08/03/2010)
Have you noticed these warm, moonlit summer nights? They bring out something timeless and eternal in just about everyone -- including a certain old dog in essayist Peter Smith's neighborhood. (07/27/2010)
Remember your All-Star baseball idol growing up? Essayist Peter Smith remembers his very well. (07/13/2010)
Summer is with us, and so too are all the little gas-powered machines and gardening tools -- devices that can be just a bit erratic when it comes to getting them started and keeping them going. You may not know what to do, but this week essayist Peter Smith honors a noble, quintessentially Minnesotan profession whose practitioners almost certainly do. (07/06/2010)