Melanie Sommer Feature Archive

University of Minnesota President Robert Bruininks is recovering from a pulmonary embolism and a blood clot in his leg, which he experienced while hiking on a family vacation in Washington State. (05/30/2008)
Gov. Tim Pawlenty has imposed a hiring freeze on most state agencies, due to concerns over the state's projected budget deficit. (02/19/2008)
Rissa Amen-Reif, the Mankato college student who was struck and killed by a car after attending a sorority party in November, had a blood alcohol level of .06 percent, below the legal level of intoxication, according to the State Patrol. (01/22/2008)
The lawsuit was filed in response to the EPA's decision in December 2007 to deny California's request to set higher tailpipe emissions standards than the federal government. (01/10/2008)
Definitions of some of the scientific terms used in this report. (04/01/2007)
There's only so much that individual communities can do for their residents at this point. (04/01/2007)
New University of Minnesota men's basketball coach Tubby Smith got a standing ovation at Williams Arena Friday afternoon, in his first official meeting with fans and the media. High expectations are riding on Smith's shoulders. (03/23/2007)
One look at a Frank Gehry building reveals his belief that architecture is art. His undulating metal exteriors often look more like sculptures than buildings. Gehry is recognized today as one of the most inventive architects of our time. (01/19/2007)
A man named Frederick Law Olmsted has had perhaps more influence on our public landscape than anyone else. He is referred to as the father of landscape architecture, and pioneered the notion -- radical at the time -- that common green space should be accessible to everyone. (01/19/2007)
During his lifetime, despite his genius (or perhaps because of it), Frank Lloyd Wright's lifestyle, personality, and even his work were often the subjects of great controversy. Now he is recognized as one of the most influential architects of the 20th century. (01/19/2007)
Designer Michael Graves' name has become synonomous with Target, the retail store chain. Graves has designed several hundred household items for Target, including toasters, wall clocks and toilet brushes -- and made the idea of good design accessible to everyone. (01/19/2007)
The Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis closes a chapter in its history this weekend, with the final performance of "Hamlet" at its longtime home on Vineland Place. Next month, it will move to a new and expanded facility along the Mississippi River. Here are some highlights of the Guthrie's rich history. (05/05/2006)
Sticker shock on your heating bills this winter may be the incentive you need to make your home more energy efficient. Or you may need some extra help paying those bills. This Cold House takes a closer look at why heating costs are going up, and what you can do about it. (12/15/2005)
There are many steps you can take around your home to make it more energy-efficient, and reduce your monthly utility bills. (12/15/2005)
I haven't shopped for a prom dress since my own high school days -- a long time ago. So it was an adventure for me the day I took my 15-year-old daughter shopping for her first prom dress. (04/22/2005)