MPR News Update

'This job thrills me,' but not enough to run again, Minneapolis Mayor Rybak says

by Phil Picardi, Minnesota Public Radio,
Hart Van Denburg, Minnesota Public Radio

Dec 28, 2012

Today on the MPR News Update. Here's some of what's been happening: Minneapolis Mayor RT Rybak won't run for a fourth term; a grieving father is charged in the accidental handgun death of his young son; farmers are apparently increasingly digging up old cemeteries and Minnesotans are still keeping food shelves hopping.

MAYOR MOVES ON: Minneapolis voters will elect the city's first new mayor in more than a decade next year after R.T. Rybak announced he won't seek a fourth term. His announcement will unleash a flood of pent-up political ambition; candidates are already lining up to take the mayor's place, and City Hall watchers are wondering what Rybak will do next.

ACCIDENTAL SHOOTING: The Hennepin County Attorney's office has charged a Minneapolis man with two felonies in the accidental shooting death of his 2-year-old son. Earlier this month Neejnco Xiong died after he was accidently shot by his 4-year-old brother. According to the charges filed yesterday, the boys' father, 31-year-old Kao Xiong, left several guns within reach of the children.

NOT SO SCARED GROUND: The last time anyone was buried in the Boerner family cemetery in Grant County was in 1892. For about 20 years before that, it was where early settlers laid at least 10 family members to rest. Then for more than 100 years, the western Minnesota pioneer cemetery remained mostly untouched. Now, a Minnesota farmer could face felony charges for destroying the old pioneer cemetery.

TUNING UP: After weeks of stalemate, locked out musicians of the Minnesota Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra will return to the bargaining table next week.

GONE FISHIN': DNR is opening lakes inside the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness to trout anglers
two weeks earlier than usual.

BARE CUPBOARDS: The number of people who sought help providing food for themselves and their families hit record highs this year. Never before have so many Minnesotans visited food shelves, or relied on food stamps. Still, those numbers aren't climbing as fast as they had been in recent years.

ALMOST A RECORD: Vikings' running back Adrian Peterson has rushed for 1,898 yards this season and needs 208 more to break the NFL's single-season record held by Eric Dickerson in 1984. Will he break that record this Sunday against the Green Bay Packers -- the same match that could secure a playoff berth for the team? Here are some photos from his stand-out season.

STONE CUTTER: Dean McFarlane has a very high profile. Or his work does, anyway. But his appearance in front of the 32-story Foshay Tower in downtown Minneapolis turns no heads. "They'd never know who we are," he said. "We're kind of in the background when it comes to building the buildings." McFarlane is a 10th-generation master stone carver, and the family's Foshay connection is long and deep.

AND LASTLY: Was that a wild year for weather? As compiled by the Minnesota Climatology Working Group, here are the top five weather events for 2012.

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