Minneapolis lies on both banks of the Mississippi River, just north of the river's confluence with the Minnesota River, and adjoins Saint Paul, the state's capital. The city is abundantly rich in water, with 13 lakes, wetlands, the Mississippi River, creeks and waterfalls, many connected by parkways in the Chain of Lakes and the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway. It was once the world's flour milling capital and a hub for timber. The city and surrounding region is the primary business center between Chicago and Seattle, with Minneapolis proper containing America's fifth-highest concentration of Fortune 500 companies. As an integral link to the global economy, Minneapolis is categorized as a global city.
In terms of its number of openly gay politicians, gay wedding ceremonies, pride events and gay-inclusive religious organizations relative to the size of the total population of the city, Minneapolis has one of the largest LGBTQ populations in the U.S. Noted for its strong music and performing arts scenes, Minneapolis is home to both the award-winning Guthrie Theater and the historic First Avenue nightclub. Reflecting the region's status as an epicenter of folk, funk, and alternative rock music, the city served as the launching pad for several of the 20th century's most influential musicians, including Bob Dylan and Prince.
The name Minneapolis is attributed to Charles Hoag, the city's first schoolmaster, who combined mni, a Dakota Sioux word for water, and polis, the Greek word for city.
Dakota Sioux had long been the region's sole residents when French explorers arrived around 1680. For a time, relations were based on fur trading. Gradually more European-American settlers arrived, competing for game and other resources with the Dakota.
In the early 19th century, the United States acquired this territory from France. It gradually established posts here. Fort Snelling was built in 1819 by the United States Army, and it attracted traders, settlers and merchants, spurring growth in the area. The United States government pressed the Mdewakanton band of the Dakota to sell their land, allowing people arriving from the East to settle here. The Minnesota Territorial Legislature authorized present-day Minneapolis as a town in 1856 on the Mississippi's west bank. Minneapolis incorporated as a city in 1867, the year rail service began between Minneapolis and Chicago. It later joined with the east-bank city of St. Anthony in 1872.
Minneapolis developed around Saint Anthony Falls, the highest waterfall on the Mississippi River and a source of power for its early industry. Forests in northern Minnesota were a valuable resource for the lumber industry, which operated seventeen sawmills on power from the waterfall. By 1871, the west river bank had twenty-three businesses, including flour mills, woolen mills, iron works, a railroad machine shop, and mills for cotton, paper, sashes, and planing wood. Due to the occupational hazards of milling, six local sources of artificial limbs were competing in the prosthetics business by the 1890s. The farmers of the Great Plains grew grain that was shipped by rail to the city's thirty-four flour mills. Millers have used hydropower elsewhere since the 1st century B.C., but the results in Minneapolis between 1880 and 1930 were so remarkable the city has been described as "the greatest direct-drive waterpower center the world has ever seen."
A father of modern milling in America and founder of what became General Mills, Cadwallader C. Washburn converted his business from gristmills to truly revolutionary technology, including "gradual reduction" processing by steel and porcelain roller mills capable of producing premium-quality pure white flour very quickly. Some ideas were developed by William Dixon Gray and some acquired through industrial espionage from the Hungarians by William de la Barre. Charles A. Pillsbury and C.A. Pillsbury Company across the river were barely a step behind, hiring Washburn employees to immediately use the new methods. The hard red spring wheat that grows in Minnesota became valuable ($.50 profit per barrel in 1871 increased to $4.50 in 1874,) and Minnesota "patent" flour was recognized at the time as the best in the world.
Not until later did consumers discover the value in the bran (which contains wheat's vitamins, minerals and fiber) that "Minneapolis... millers routinely dumped" into the Mississippi. Millers cultivated relationships with academic scientists especially at the University of Minnesota. Those scientists backed them politically on many issues, for example during the early 20th century, when health advocates in the nascent field of nutrition criticized the flour "bleaching" process. At peak production, a single mill at Washburn-Crosby made enough flour for 12 million loaves of bread each day, and by 1900, 14.1 percent of America's grain was milled in Minneapolis. Further, by 1895 through the efforts of silent partner William Hood Dunwoody, Washburn-Crosby exported four million barrels of flour a year to the United Kingdom, and when exports reached their peak in 1900, about one third of all flour milled in Minneapolis was shipped overseas.
Corruption, social movements, urban renewal
Known initially as a kindly physician, Doc Ames led the city into corruption during four terms as mayor just before 1900. The gangster Kid Cann was famous for bribery and intimidation during the 1930s and 1940s. The city made dramatic changes to rectify discrimination as early as 1886 when Martha Ripley founded Maternity Hospital for both married and unmarried mothers.
When the country's fortunes turned during the Great Depression, the violent Teamsters Strike of 1934 resulted in laws acknowledging workers' rights. A lifelong civil rights activist and union supporter, mayor Hubert Humphrey helped the city establish fair employment practices and a human relations council that interceded on behalf of minorities by 1946. In the 1950s, about 1.6% of the population of Minneapolis was nonwhite. Minneapolis contended with white supremacy, participated in desegregation and the civil rights movement, and in 1968 was the birthplace of the American Indian Movement.
Minneapolis was a "particularly virulent" site of anti-semitism until 1950. A hate group known as the Silver Legion of America, or Silver Shirts, recruited members in the city and held meetings there around 1936 to 1938. The Jewish Free Employment Bureau tried to help victims of economic discrimination, with limited success. In 1938, the Jewish Community Relations Council of Minnesota and the Dakotas was established to combat rising anti-semitism, fighting against hate-filled leaflets and anti-Jewish remarks, while also attempting to expose discrimination by real estate agents and employers who attempted to subvert anti-discrimination laws. After years of discrimination towards Jewish doctors, the Jewish community raised funds to create the Mount Sinai Hospital, which opened in 1951. It was the first private non-sectarian hospital in the community to accept members of minority races on its medical staff.
During the 1950s and 1960s, as part of urban renewal, the city razed about 200 buildings across 25 city blocks (roughly 40% of downtown), destroying the Gateway District and many buildings with notable architecture, including the Metropolitan Building. Efforts to save the building failed but are credited with sparking interest in (but not always succeeding in) historic preservation in the state.
The history and economic growth of Minneapolis are tied to water, the city's defining physical characteristic, which was brought to the region during the last ice age ten thousand years ago. Ice blocks deposited in valleys by retreating glaciers created the lakes of Minneapolis. Fed by a receding glacier and Lake Agassiz, torrents of water from a glacial river cut the Mississippi riverbed and created the river's only waterfall, Saint Anthony Falls, important to the early settlers of Minneapolis.
Lying on an artesian aquifer and flat terrain, Minneapolis has a total area of 58.4 square miles (151.3 km2) and of this 6% is water. Water supply is managed by four watershed districts that correspond to the Mississippi and the city's three creeks. Twelve lakes, three large ponds, and five unnamed wetlands are within Minneapolis.
The city center is located at 45° N latitude. The city's lowest elevation of 686 feet (209 m) is near where Minnehaha Creek meets the Mississippi River. The site of the Prospect Park Water Tower is often cited as the city's highest point and a placard in Deming Heights Park denotes the highest elevation. A spot at 974 feet (297 m) in or near Waite Park in Northeast Minneapolis, however, is corroborated by Google Earth as the highest ground.
Minneapolis has a hot-summer humid continental climate zone (Dfa in the Köppen climate classification), typical of southern parts of the Upper Midwest, and is situated in USDA plant hardiness zone 4b, with small enclaves of the city classified as being zone 5a. As is typical in a continental climate, the difference between average temperatures in the coldest winter month and the warmest summer month is great: 60.1 °F (33.4 °C).
According to the NOAA, Minneapolis's annual average for sunshine duration is 58%.
The city experiences a full range of precipitation and related weather events, including snow, sleet, ice, rain, thunderstorms, and fog. The highest recorded temperature was 108 °F (42 °C) in July 1936 while the lowest was −41 °F (−41 °C) in January 1888. The snowiest winter of record was 1983–84, when 8.2 feet or 98.4 inches (250 cm) of snow fell, and the least snowy winter was 1890-91, when only 11.1 inches (28 cm) fell.
As of the 2010 U.S. census, the racial composition was as follows:White: 63.8%Black or African American: 18.6%American Indian: 2.0%Asian: 5.6% (1.9% Hmong, 0.9% Chinese, 0.7% Indian, 0.6% Korean, 0.4% Vietnamese, 0.3% Thai, 0.3% Laotian, 0.2% Filipino, 0.1% Japanese, 0.2% Other Asian)Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander: 0.1%Other: 5.6%Multiracial: 4.4%Hispanic or Latino (of any race): 10.5% (7.0% Mexican, 1.3% Ecuadorian, 0.4% Puerto Rican, 0.3% Guatemalan, 0.2% Salvadoran, 1.3% Other Latino)
White Americans make up about three-fifths of Minneapolis's population. This community is predominantly of German and Scandinavian descent. There are 82,870 German Americans in the city, making up over one-fifth (23.1%) of the population. The Scandinavian-American population is primarily Norwegian and Swedish. There are 39,103 Norwegian Americans, making up 10.9% of the population; there are 30,349 Swedish Americans, making up 8.5% of the city's population. Danish Americans are not nearly as numerous; there are 4,434 Danish Americans, making up only 1.3% of the population. Norwegian, Swedish, and Danish Americans together make up 20.7% of the population. This means that ethnic Germans and Scandinavians together make up 43.8% of Minneapolis's population, and make up the majority of Minneapolis's non-Hispanic white population. Other significant European groups in the city include those of Irish (11.3%), English (7.0%), Polish (3.9%), French (3.5%) and Italian (2.3%) descent.
There are 10,711 individuals who identify as multiracial in Minneapolis. People of black and white ancestry number at 3,551, and make up 1.0% of the population. People of white and Native American ancestry number at 2,319, and make up 0.6% of the population. Those of white and Asian ancestry number at 1,871, and make up 0.5% of the population. Lastly, people of black and Native American ancestry number at 885, and make up 0.2% of Minneapolis's population.
Dakota tribes, mostly the Mdewakanton, as early as the 16th century were known as permanent settlers near their sacred site of St. Anthony Falls. New settlers arrived during the 1850s and 1860s in Minneapolis from New England, New York, and Canada, and during the mid-1860s, immigrants from Finland and Scandinavians (from Sweden, Norway and Denmark) began to call the city home. Migrant workers from Mexico and Latin America also interspersed. Later, immigrants came from Germany, Italy, Greece, Poland, and Southern and Eastern Europe. These immigrants tended to settle in the Northeast neighborhood, which still retains an ethnic flavor and is particularly known for its Polish community. Jews from Russia and Eastern Europe began arriving in the 1880s and settled primarily on the north side of the city before moving in large numbers to the western suburbs in the 1950s and 1960s. Asians came from China, the Philippines, Japan, and Korea. Two groups came for a short while during U.S. government relocations: Japanese during the 1940s, and Native Americans during the 1950s. From 1970 onward, Asians arrived from Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, and Thailand. Beginning in the 1990s, a large Latino population arrived, along with immigrants from the Horn of Africa, especially Somalia. The metropolitan area is an immigrant gateway which had a 127% increase in foreign-born residents between 1990 and 2000.
U.S. Census Bureau estimates in the year 2015 show the population of Minneapolis to be 410,939, a 7.4% increase since the 2010 census. The population grew until 1950 when the census peaked at 521,718, and then declined as people moved to the suburbs until about 1990.
Among U.S. cities as of 2006, Minneapolis has the fourth-highest percentage of gay, lesbian, or bisexual people in the adult population, with 12.5% (behind San Francisco, and slightly behind both Seattle and Atlanta). In 2012, The Advocate named Minneapolis the seventh gayest city in America. In 2013, the city was among 25 U.S. cities to receive the highest possible score from the Human Rights Campaign, signifying its support for LGBT residents.
Racial and ethnic minorities lag behind white counterparts in education, with 15.0% of blacks and 13.0% of Hispanics holding bachelor's degrees compared to 42.0% of the white population. The standard of living is on the rise, with incomes among the highest in the Midwest, but median household income among minorities is below that of whites by over $17,000. Regionally, home ownership among minority residents is half that of whites though Asian home ownership has doubled. In 2000, the poverty rate for whites was 4.2%; for blacks it was 26.2%; for Asians, 19.1%; Native Americans, 23.2%; and Hispanics, 18.1%.
According to a 2014 study by the Pew Research Center, 70% of the population of the city identified themselves as Christians, with 46% professing attendance at a variety of churches that could be considered Protestant, and 21% professing Roman Catholic beliefs while 23% claim no religious affiliation. The same study says that other religions (including Judaism, Buddhism, Islam, and Hinduism) collectively make up about 5% of the population.
The Dakota people, the original inhabitants of the area where Minneapolis now stands, believed in the Great Spirit and were surprised that not all European settlers were religious. Over fifty denominations and religions and some well known churches have since been established in Minneapolis. Those who arrived from New England were for the most part Christian Protestants, Quakers, and Universalists. The oldest continuously used church in the city, Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Church in the Nicollet Island/East Bank neighborhood, was built in 1856 by Universalists and soon afterward was acquired by a French Catholic congregation. The first Jewish congregation in Minneapolis was formed in 1878 as Shaarai Tov (though it has been known since 1920 as Temple Israel); in 1928, it built the synagogue in East Isles. St. Mary's Orthodox Cathedral was founded in 1887, opened a missionary school in 1897 and in 1905 created the first Russian Orthodox seminary in the U.S. Edwin Hawley Hewitt designed both St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral and Hennepin Avenue United Methodist Church on Hennepin Avenue just south of downtown. The first basilica in the United States, and Co-Cathedral of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, the Basilica of Saint Mary near Loring Park was named by Pope Pius XI in 1926.
The Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, Decision magazine, and World Wide Pictures film and television distribution were headquartered in Minneapolis between the late 1940s into the 2000s. Jim Bakker and Tammy Faye met while attending the Pentecostal North Central University and began a television ministry that by the 1980s reached 13.5 million households. Today, Mount Olivet Lutheran Church in southwest Minneapolis with about 6,000 attendees is the nation's second-largest Lutheran congregation. Christ Church Lutheran in the Longfellow neighborhood is among the finest work by architect Eliel Saarinen. The congregation later added an education building designed by his son Eero Saarinen.
Religions outside the Judeo-Christian mainstream also have a home in the city. During the mid-to-late 1950s, members of the Nation of Islam created a temple in north Minneapolis, and the first mosque was built in 1967. In 1972 a relief agency resettled the first Shi'a Muslim family from Uganda. By 2004, between 20,000 and 30,000 Somali Muslims made the city their home. In 1972, Dainin Katagiri was invited from California to Minneapolis—by one account, a place he thought nobody else would want to go—where he founded a lineage which today includes three Sōtō Zen centers among the city's nearly 20 Buddhist and meditation centers. Atheists For Human Rights has its headquarters in the Shingle Creek neighborhood in a geodesic dome. Minneapolis has had a chartered local body of Ordo Templi Orientis since 1994.
The Minneapolis–St. Paul area is the second largest economic center in the Midwest, behind Chicago. The economy of Minneapolis today is based in commerce, finance, rail and trucking services, health care, and industry. Smaller components are in publishing, milling, food processing, graphic arts, insurance, education, and high technology. Industry produces metal and automotive products, chemical and agricultural products, electronics, computers, precision medical instruments and devices, plastics, and machinery. The city at one time produced farm implements.
Five Fortune 500 corporations make their headquarters within the city limits of Minneapolis: Target, U.S. Bancorp, Xcel Energy, Ameriprise Financial and Thrivent Financial. As of 2015, the city's largest employers downtown are Target, Wells Fargo, HCMC, Hennepin County, Ameriprise, U.S. Bancorp, Xcel Energy, City of Minneapolis, RBC Wealth Management, the Star Tribune, Capella Education Company, Thrivent, CenturyLink, ABM Industries, and the Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis.
Foreign companies with U.S. offices in Minneapolis include Accenture, Bellisio Foods (now part of Charoen Pokphand Foods), Canadian Pacific, Coloplast, RBC, and Voya Financial.
Availability of Wi-Fi, transportation solutions, medical trials, university research and development expenditures, advanced degrees held by the work force, and energy conservation are so far above the national average that in 2005, Popular Science named Minneapolis the "Top Tech City" in the U.S. The Twin Cities was ranked as the country's second best city in a 2006 Kiplinger's poll of Smart Places to Live and Minneapolis was one of the Seven Cool Cities for young professionals.
The Twin Cities contribute 63.8% of the gross state product of Minnesota. Measured by gross metropolitan product per resident ($62,054), Minneapolis is the fifteenth richest city in the U.S. The area's $199.6 billion gross metropolitan product and its per capita personal income rank thirteenth in the U.S. Recovering from the nation's recession in 2000, personal income grew 3.8% in 2005, though it was behind the national average of 5%. The city returned to peak employment during the fourth quarter of that year.
The Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis serves Minnesota, Montana, North and South Dakota, and parts of Wisconsin and Michigan. The smallest of the 12 regional banks in the Federal Reserve System, it operates a nationwide payments system, oversees member banks and bank holding companies, and serves as a banker for the U.S. Treasury. The Minneapolis Grain Exchange, founded in 1881, is still located near the riverfront and is the only exchange for hard red spring wheat futures and options.
Minneapolis' cultural organizations draw creative people and audiences to the city for theater, visual art, writing and music. The community's diverse population also continues to manage a long tradition of charitable support through progressive public social programs, VOLAGs and volunteering, as well as through private and corporate philanthropy.
The Walker Art Center, one of the five largest modern art museums in the U.S., sits atop Lowry Hill, near the downtown area. The size of the Center was doubled with an addition in 2005 by Herzog & de Meuron, and expanded with the conversion of a 15 acres (6.1 ha) park designed by Michel Desvigne, located across the street from the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden.
The Minneapolis Institute of Art, designed by McKim, Mead & White in 1915 in south central Minneapolis, is the largest art museum in the city, with 100,000 pieces in its permanent collection. New wings, designed by Kenzo Tange and Michael Graves, opened in 1974 and 2006, respectively, for contemporary and modern works, as well as more gallery space.
The Weisman Art Museum, designed by Frank Gehry for the University of Minnesota, opened in 1993. An addition which doubled the size of the galleries, also designed by Gehry, opened in 2011. The Museum of Russian Art opened in a restored church in 2005 and exhibits a collection of 20th-century Russian art as well as lecture series, seminars, social functions and other special events.
USA Today voted the Northeast Minneapolis Arts District as the nation's best art district in 2015, citing 400 independent artists, a center at the Northrup King Building, and recurring annual events like Art-A-Whirl every spring, and the Fine Arts Show Art Attack and Casket Arts Quad's Cache open studio events in November.
Minneapolis has been a cultural center for theatrical performances since the mid 1800s. Early theaters included the Pence Opera House, the Academy of Music, the Grand Opera House, the Lyceum, and later the Metropolitan Opera House, which opened in 1894.
The city is second only to New York City in terms of live theater per capita and is the third-largest theater market in the U.S., after New York City and Chicago. Theater companies and troupes such as the Illusion, Jungle, Mixed Blood, Penumbra, Mu Performing Arts, Bedlam Theatre, HUGE Improv Theater, the Brave New Workshop, the Minnesota Dance Theatre, Red Eye Theater, Skewed Visions, Theater Latté Da, In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre, Lundstrum Center for the Performing Arts and the Children's Theatre Company are based in Minneapolis.
The Guthrie Theater, the area's largest theater company, occupies a three-stage complex overlooking the Mississippi, designed by French architect Jean Nouvel. The company was founded in 1963 as a prototype alternative to Broadway, and it produces a wide variety of shows throughout the year. Minneapolis purchased and renovated the Orpheum, State, and Pantages Theatres vaudeville and film houses on Hennepin Avenue, which is now used for concerts and plays. A fourth renovated theater, the former Shubert, joined with the Hennepin Center for the Arts to become the Cowles Center for Dance and the Performing Arts, home to more than one dozen performing arts groups. The city is home to Minnesota Fringe Festival, the largest nonjuried performing arts festival in the U.S.
The son of a jazz musician and a singer, Prince was born in Minneapolis, lived in the area most of his life, and became Rolling Stone's 27th greatest artist of the rock era. With fellow local musicians, many of whom recorded at Twin/Tone Records, he helped make First Avenue and the 7th Street Entry prominent venues for both artists and audiences. Other prominent artists from Minneapolis include Hüsker Dü and The Replacements—who were pivotal in the U.S. alternative rock boom during the 1990s. The Replacements' frontman, Paul Westerberg, developed a successful solo career, as did Hüsker Dü's Bob Mould.
The Minnesota Orchestra plays classical and popular music at Orchestra Hall under music director Osmo Vänskä—a critic writing for The New Yorker in 2010 described it as "the greatest orchestra in the world." In 2013, the orchestra received a Grammy nomination for its recording of "Sibelius: Symphonies Nos. 2 & 5" and it won a Grammy Award in 2014 for "Sibelius: Symphonies Nos 1 & 4". Vänskä departed in 2013 when a labor dispute remained unresolved and forced the cancellation of concerts scheduled for Carnegie Hall. After a 15-month lockout, a contract settlement resulted in the return of the performers, including Vänskä, to Orchestra Hall in January 2014.
Tom Waits released two songs about the city, "Christmas Card from a Hooker in Minneapolis" (Blue Valentine (1978)) and "9th & Hennepin" (Rain Dogs (1985)), while Lucinda Williams recorded "Minneapolis" (World Without Tears (2003)). In 2008, the century-old MacPhail Center for Music opened a new facility designed by James Dayton.
Home to the MN Spoken Word Association and independent hip hop label Rhymesayers Entertainment, the city has garnered attention for rap, hip hop and its spoken word community. Underground Minnesota hip hop acts like Atmosphere and Manny Phesto frequently comment about the city and Minnesota in song lyrics.
Locally and internationally recognized Minneapolis electronic dance music artists include Woody McBride, Freddy Fresh (who walks a line with hip hop) and DVS1.
Minneapolis is home to two internationally recognized opera companies: the Minnesota Opera and the Mill City Summer Opera.
Minneapolis is the third-most literate city in the U.S. A center for printing and publishing, Minneapolis was the city in which Open Book, the largest literary and book arts center in the U.S., was founded. The Center consists of the Loft Literary Center, the Minnesota Center for Book Arts and Milkweed Editions (the latter is sometimes called the country's largest independent nonprofit literary publisher). The Center exhibits and teaches both contemporary art and traditional crafts of writing, papermaking, letterpress printing and bookbinding.
Philanthropy and charitable giving are part of the community. More than 40% of adults in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul area give time to volunteer work, the highest such percentage of any large metropolitan area in the United States. Catholic Charities USA is one of the largest providers of social services locally. The American Refugee Committee helps 2.5 million refugees and displaced persons in ten countries in Africa and Asia each year. In 2011, Target Corporation was #42 in a list of the best 100 corporate citizens in CR magazine for corporate responsibility officers. The oldest foundation in Minnesota, the Minneapolis Foundation invests and administers over nine hundred charitable funds and connects donors to nonprofit organizations. The metropolitan area gives 13% of its total charitable donations to the arts and culture. The majority of the estimated $1 billion recent expansion of arts facilities was contributed privately.
Minneapolis is home to award-winning restaurants and chefs. As of 2016, four Minneapolis-based chefs have won James Beard Foundation Awards: Alexander Roberts, Restaurant Alma; Isaac Becker, 112 Eatery; Paul Bergland, Bachelor Farmer; and Tim McKee, La Belle Vie. In 2014, seven chefs and restaurants in the area were named as semifinalists.
Julia Moskin wrote about New Nordic cuisine, chef Paul Berglund and the Bachelor Farmer, and the restaurants La Loma, Tilia, the Red Stag Supper Club, Fika and Haute Dish in The New York Times in 2012. She said Minneapolis chefs served trendy Nordic ingredients like root vegetables, fish roe, wild greens, venison, dried mushrooms, seaweed and cow's milk. Two months later, Bon Appétit featured the Bachelor Farmer, Piccolo, Saffron, Salty Tart, and Smack Shack/1029 Bar, writing about New Nordic cuisine and the Scandinavian heritage of Minneapolis. In 2012 Food & Wine magazine named Minneapolis the nation's best and best-priced new food city. In 2015, profiling chef Gavin Kaysen and Spoon and Stable, Saveur named Minneapolis "the next great American food city." Then, Food & Wine voted Spoon and Stable one of five 2015 restaurants of the year.
In 2015, Bon Appétit named Spoon and Stable, along with Hola Arepa and Heyday, three of the 50 best places in the U.S. for a meal. In 2015, Spoon and Stable was nominated for a James Beard Award for Best New Restaurant, and Shea, Inc., who designed the Spoon and Stable renovation, was nominated for Outstanding Restaurant Design. Jason DeRusha of WCCO-TV was nominated for his television segment, DeRusha Eats.
USA Today reader's choice 10 Best decided that Minneapolis–Saint Paul was the Best Local Food Scene in 2015. Four fine dining restaurants closed during 2015 and 2016: La Belle Vie, Vincent, Brasserie Zentral, and Saffron. Food & Wine named Brewer's Table at Surly Brewing one of its ten 2016 restaurants of the year. Also in 2016, Food & Wine named Eat Street Social, Constantine, and Coup d'État three of the best cocktail bars in the U.S. Young Joni was selected one of the GQ top ten new restaurants and one of Eater's twelve best new restaurants of 2017.
Minneapolis is home to five professional sports teams. In recent years, the Minnesota Lynx have been the most successful sports team in the city and a dominant force in the WNBA, reaching the WNBA Finals in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, and 2016 and winning in 2011, 2013, and 2015. The Minnesota Timberwolves brought NBA basketball back to Minneapolis in 1989, followed by the Lynx in 1999. Both basketball teams play in the Target Center, but the Lynx will play the 2017 season at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul and the 2017 postseason in the University's Williams Arena during remodeling at Target Center.
The Minnesota Vikings and the Minnesota Twins have played in the state since 1961. The Vikings were an NFL expansion team, and the Twins were formed when the Washington Senators relocated to Minnesota. The Twins have won 10 division titles (1969, 1970, 1987, 1991, 2002–04, 2006, 2009, and 2010), 3 American League Pennants (1965, 1987 and 1991) and the World Series in 1987 and 1991. The Twins have played at Target Field since 2010. The Vikings have played in the Super Bowl following the 1969, 1973, 1974, and 1976 seasons (Super Bowl IV, Super Bowl VIII, Super Bowl IX, and Super Bowl XI, respectively), losing all four games.
The Minnesota Wild of the NHL play in St. Paul at the Xcel Energy Center. The professional soccer team Minnesota United FC of the NASL played in suburban Blaine at the National Sports Center through 2016. In 2017, the team joined the MLS and play the 2017 season in the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium, and then will relocate to St. Paul in 2019 when Allianz Field has been built there.
Other professional teams have played in Minneapolis in the past. First playing in 1884, the Minneapolis Millers baseball team produced the best won-lost record in their league at the time and contributed fifteen players to the Baseball Hall of Fame. During the 1920s, Minneapolis was home to the NFL team the Minneapolis Marines, later known as the Minneapolis Red Jackets. During the 1940s and 1950s the Minneapolis Lakers basketball team, the city's first in the major leagues in any sport, won six basketball championships in three leagues to become the NBA's first dynasty before moving to Los Angeles. The American Wrestling Association, formerly the NWA Minneapolis Boxing & Wrestling Club, operated in Minneapolis from 1960 until the 1990s.
The 1,750,000-square-foot (163,000 m2) U.S. Bank Stadium was built for the Vikings for about $1.122 billion, over half financed by Vikings owner Zygi Wilf and private investment. Called "Minnesota's biggest-ever public works project," the stadium opened in 2016 with 66,000 seats, expandable to 70,000 for the 2018 Super Bowl. Two thousand high-definition televisions are dominated by two scoreboards, the league's 10th largest, that together measure 12,560 square feet (1,167 m2) and are each larger than a city house lot. Thanks to a state of the art Wi-Fi network, fans can order food and drink and have them delivered to their seats or ready for pickup. A Vikings' vice president thought that the Vikings' Longhouse bar and concessions area and The Commons park could be attractions to those without football tickets. Season tickets sold out before the football season began. U.S. Bank Stadium will also feature rollerblading nights and will host concerts and events.
The downtown Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome, demolished beginning in January 2014, was the largest sports stadium in Minnesota from 1982 to 2013. Major sporting events hosted by the city include the 1985 and 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star Games, the 1987 and 1991 World Series, Super Bowl XXVI in 1992, the 1992 NCAA Men's Division I Final Four, the 2001 NCAA Men's Division 1 Final Four and the 1998 World Figure Skating Championships. Minneapolis has made it to the international round finals to host the Summer Olympic Games three times, being beaten by London in 1948, Helsinki in 1952 (when the city finished in second place), and Melbourne in 1956. In May 2014, the NFL announced that Minneapolis will host Super Bowl LII in 2018.
Since the 1930s, the Golden Gophers have won national championships in baseball, boxing, football, golf, gymnastics, ice hockey, indoor and outdoor track, swimming, and wrestling. The Gophers women's ice hockey team is a six-time NCAA champion and seven-time national champion.
The Minneapolis park system has been called the best-designed, best-financed, and best-maintained in America. Foresight, donations and effort by community leaders enabled Horace Cleveland to create his finest landscape architecture, preserving geographical landmarks and linking them with boulevards and parkways. The city's Chain of Lakes, consisting of seven lakes and Minnehaha Creek, is connected by bike, running, and walking paths and used for swimming, fishing, picnics, boating, and ice skating. A parkway for cars, a bikeway for riders, and a walkway for pedestrians runs parallel along the 52 miles (84 km) route of the Grand Rounds National Scenic Byway.
Theodore Wirth is credited with the development of the parks system. Today, 16.6% of the city is parks and there are 770 square feet (72 m2) of parkland for each resident, ranked in 2008 as the most parkland per resident within cities of similar population densities. In its 2013 ParkScore ranking, The Trust for Public Land reported that Minneapolis had the best park system among the 50 most populous U.S. cities.
Parks are interlinked in many places and the Mississippi National River and Recreation Area connects regional parks and visitor centers. The country's oldest public wildflower garden, the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary, is located within Theodore Wirth Park. Wirth Park is shared with Golden Valley and is about 60% the size of Central Park in New York City. Site of the 53-foot (16 m) Minnehaha Falls, Minnehaha Park is one of the city's oldest and most popular parks, receiving over 500,000 visitors each year. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow named Hiawatha's wife Minnehaha for the Minneapolis waterfall in The Song of Hiawatha, a bestselling and often-parodied 19th century poem.
Runner's World ranks the Twin Cities as America's sixth best city for runners. Team Ortho sponsors the Minneapolis Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K which began in 2009 with more than 1,500 starters. The Twin Cities Marathon run in Minneapolis and Saint Paul every October draws 250,000 spectators. The 26.2-mile (42.2 km) race is a Boston and USA Olympic Trials qualifier. The organizers sponsor three more races: a Kids Marathon, a 1-mile (1.6 km), and a 10-mile (16 km).
The American College of Sports Medicine ranked Minneapolis and its metropolitan area the nation's first, second, or third "fittest city" every year from 2008 to 2016, ranking it first from 2011 to 2013. In other sports, five golf courses are located within the city, with the nationally ranked Hazeltine National Golf Club and Interlachen Country Club in nearby suburbs. Minneapolis is home to more golfers per capita than any other major U.S. city. The state of Minnesota has the nation's highest number of bicyclists, sport fishermen, and snow skiers per capita. Hennepin County has the second-highest number of horses per capita in the U.S. While living in Minneapolis, Scott and Brennan Olson founded (and later sold) Rollerblade, the company that popularized the sport of inline skating.
Minneapolis is a stronghold for the Minnesota Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party (DFL), an affiliate of the Democratic Party. The Minneapolis City Council holds the most power and represents the city's thirteen districts called wards. The city adopted instant-runoff voting in 2006, first using it in the 2009 elections. The council has 12 DFL members and one from the Green Party. Election issues in 2013 included funding for a new Vikings stadium over which some incumbents lost their positions. That year, Minneapolis elected Abdi Warsame, Alondra Cano, and Blong Yang, the city's first Somali-American, Mexican-American, and Hmong-American city councilpeople, respectively.
Betsy Hodges of the DFL is the current mayor of Minneapolis. The office of mayor is relatively weak but has some power to appoint individuals such as the chief of police. Parks, taxation, and public housing are semi-independent boards and levy their own taxes and fees subject to Board of Estimate and Taxation limits.
At the federal level, Minneapolis proper sits within Minnesota's 5th congressional district, which has been represented since 2006 by Democrat Keith Ellison, the first practicing Muslim in the United States Congress. Both of Minnesota's two U.S. Senators, Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken, were also elected while living in Minneapolis and are also Democrats.
The Republican Party of Minnesota in January 2014 moved its state headquarters from Saint Paul to the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis.
Citizens had a unique and powerful influence in neighborhood government. Neighborhoods coordinated activities under the Neighborhood Revitalization Program (NRP), which ended in 2009. Minneapolis is divided into communities, each containing neighborhoods. In some cases two or more neighborhoods act together under one organization. Some areas are commonly known by nicknames of business associations.
The organizers of Earth Day scored Minneapolis ninth best overall and second among mid-sized cities in their 2007 Urban Environment Report, a study based on indicators of environmental health and their effect on people. Minneapolis has also been cited as one of the most environmentally responsible cities in America.
Early Minneapolis experienced a period of corruption in local government and crime was common until an economic downturn in the mid-1900s. Since 1950 the population decreased and much of downtown was lost to urban renewal and highway construction. The result was a "moribund and peaceful" environment until the 1990s. Along with economic recovery the murder rate climbed. The Minneapolis Police Department imported a computer system from New York City that sent officers to high crime areas. Despite accusations of racial profiling; the result was a drop in major crime. Since 1999 the number of homicides increased during four years. Politicians debated the causes and solutions, including increasing the number of police officers, providing youths with alternatives to gangs and drugs, and helping families in poverty.
From 2006 to 2012, under chief Tim Dolan, the crime rate steadily dropped, and the police benefited from new video and gunfire locator resources, although Dolan was criticized for expensive city settlements for police misconduct. While violent crime dropped (from 6,374 in 2006 to 3,720 in 2011), homicides rose by 105% and rape was at the highest rate among large cities. U.S. News & World Report said in 2011 that Minneapolis tied with Cleveland, Ohio as the 10th most dangerous city in the United States.
Serving until January 2019, Medaria Arradondo is the chief of police. Mayor Hodges faced severe criticism after the police shooting of Jamar Clark who died in 2015. Facing new criticism when an Australian woman was shot and killed by police in July 2017, she asked for and received the resignation of chief Janeé Harteau who had served since 2012, and mayor Hodges appointed assistant chief and 28-year veteran Arradondo to the position.
The City Council passed a resolution in March 2015 making fossil fuel divestment city policy. With encouragement from Mayor Hodges, Minneapolis joined seventeen cities worldwide in the Carbon Neutral Cities Alliance. The city's climate plan is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 15 percent in 2015 "compared to 2006 levels, 30 percent by 2025 and 80 percent by 2050".
Minneapolis Public Schools enroll 36,370 students in public primary and secondary schools. The district administers about 100 public schools including 45 elementary schools, seven middle schools, seven high schools, eight special education schools, eight alternative schools, 19 contract alternative schools, and five charter schools. With authority granted by the state legislature, the school board makes policy, selects the superintendent, and oversees the district's budget, curriculum, personnel, and facilities. Students speak 90 different languages at home and most school communications are printed in English, Hmong, Spanish, and Somali. About 44% of students in the Minneapolis Public School system graduate, which ranks the 6th worst out of the nation's 50 largest cities. Some students attend public schools in other school districts chosen by their families under Minnesota's open enrollment statute. Besides public schools, the city is home to more than 20 private schools and academies and about 20 additional charter schools.
Minneapolis' collegiate scene is dominated by the main campus of the University of Minnesota where more than 50,000 undergraduate, graduate, and professional students attend 20 colleges, schools, and institutes. The graduate school programs ranked highest in 2007 were counseling and personnel services, chemical engineering, psychology, macroeconomics, applied mathematics and non-profit management. A Big Ten school and home of the Golden Gophers, the University of Minnesota is the fourth largest campus among U.S. public 4-year universities in terms of enrollment.
Augsburg University, Minneapolis College of Art and Design, and North Central University are private four-year colleges. Minneapolis Community and Technical College, the private Dunwoody College of Technology, Globe University/Minnesota School of Business, and Art Institutes International Minnesota provide career training. St. Mary's University of Minnesota has a Twin Cities campus for its graduate and professional programs. Capella University, Minnesota School of Professional Psychology, and Walden University are headquartered in Minneapolis and some others including the public four-year Metropolitan State University and the private four-year University of St. Thomas have campuses there.
The Hennepin County Library system began to operate the city's public libraries in 2008. The Minneapolis Public Library, founded by T. B. Walker in 1885, faced a severe budget shortfall for 2007, and was forced to temporarily close three of its neighborhood libraries. The new downtown Central Library designed by César Pelli opened in 2006. Ten special collections hold over 25,000 books and resources for researchers, including the Minneapolis Collection and the Minneapolis Photo Collection. At recent count 1,696,453 items in the system are used annually and the library answers over 500,000 research and fact-finding questions each year.
Five major newspapers are published in Minneapolis: Star Tribune, Finance and Commerce, Minnesota Spokesman-Recorder, the university's The Minnesota Daily and MinnPost.com. Other publications are the City Pages weekly, the Mpls.St.Paul and Minnesota Monthly monthlies, and Utne magazine. In 2008 readers of online news also used The UpTake, Minnesota Independent, Twin Cities Daily Planet, Downtown Journal, Cursor, MNSpeak and about fifteen other sites.
Minneapolis has a mix of radio stations and healthy listener support for public radio. In the commercial market three radio broadcasting companies iHeartMedia (formerly Clear Channel), CBS Radio, and Cumulus Media operate the majority of the radio stations in the market. Listeners support three Minnesota Public Radio non-profit stations and two community non-profit stations, the Minneapolis Public Schools and the University of Minnesota each operate a station, and religious organizations run four stations.
The city's first television was broadcast in 1948 by the Saint Paul station and ABC affiliate KSTP-TV, an NBC affiliate at the time. The first to broadcast in color was WCCO-TV, the CBS affiliate which is located in downtown Minneapolis. WCCO-TV, FOX affiliate KMSP-TV and MyNetworkTV affiliate WFTC operate as owned-and-operated stations of their affiliated networks. The city and suburbs are also home to independently-owned affiliates of NBC (KARE), PBS (KTCA-TV/KTCI-TV), The CW (WUCW) and one independent station (KSTC-TV).
A number of movies have been shot in Minneapolis, including The Heartbreak Kid (1972), Ice Castles (1978), Take This Job and Shove It (1981), Purple Rain (1984), That Was Then, This Is Now (1985), The Mighty Ducks (1992), Untamed Heart (1993), Beautiful Girls (1996), Jingle All the Way (1996), Fargo (1996), and Young Adult (2011). In television, two episodes of Route 66 were shot in Minneapolis in 1963 (and broadcast in 1963 and 1964). The 1970s CBS situation comedy fictionally based in Minneapolis, The Mary Tyler Moore Show, won three Golden Globes and 31 Emmy Awards.
Half of Minneapolis–Saint Paul residents work in the city where they live. Most residents drive cars, but 60% of the 160,000 people working downtown commute by means other than a single person per auto. Alternative transportation is encouraged. The Metropolitan Council's Metro Transit, which operates the light rail system and most of the city's buses, provides free travel vouchers through the Guaranteed Ride Home program to allay fears that commuters might otherwise be occasionally stranded if, for example, they work late hours.
On January 1, 2011, the city's limit of 343 taxis was lifted.
Minneapolis currently has two light rail lines and one commuter rail line. The METRO Blue Line LRT (formerly the Hiawatha Line) serves 34,000 riders daily and connects the Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport and Mall of America in Bloomington to downtown. Most of the line runs at surface level, although parts of the line run on elevated tracks (including the Franklin Avenue and Lake Street/Midtown stations) and approximately 2 miles (3.2 km) of the line runs underground, including the Lindbergh terminal subway station at the airport.
Minneapolis' second light rail line, the METRO Green Line shares stations with the Blue Line in downtown Minneapolis, and then at the Downtown East station, travels east through the University of Minnesota, and then along University Avenue into downtown Saint Paul. Construction began in November 2010 and the line began service on June 14, 2014. The third line, the Southwest Line (Green Line extension), will connect downtown Minneapolis with the southwestern suburb of Eden Prairie. Completion is expected sometime in the late 2010s. A northwest LRT is planned along Bottineau Boulevard (Blue Line extension) from downtown to Brooklyn Park and Maple Grove.
The 40-mile Northstar Commuter rail, which runs from Big Lake through the northern suburbs and terminates at the multi-modal transit station at Target Field, opened on November 16, 2009. It uses existing railroad tracks and serves 2,600 daily commuters.
Minneapolis ranks 27th in the nation for the highest percentage of commuters by bicycle, and was editorialized as the top bicycling city in "Bicycling's Top 50" ranking in 2010. Ten thousand cyclists use the bike lanes in the city each day, and many ride in the winter. The Public Works Department expanded the bicycle trail system from the Grand Rounds to 56 miles (90 km) of off-street commuter trails including the Midtown Greenway, the Light Rail Trail, Kenilworth Trail, Cedar Lake Trail and the West River Parkway Trail along the Mississippi. Minneapolis also has 34 miles (54 km) of dedicated bike lanes on city streets and encourages cycling by equipping transit buses with bike racks and by providing online bicycle maps. Many of these trails and bridges, such as the Stone Arch Bridge, were former railroad lines that have now been converted for bicycles and pedestrians. In 2007 citing the city's bicycle lanes, buses and LRT, Forbes identified Minneapolis the world's fifth cleanest city. In 2010, Nice Ride Minnesota launched with 65 kiosks for bicycle sharing, and 19 pedicabs were operating downtown. In 2016, Nice Ride expanded to 171 stations and 1,833 bikes supplied by PBSC Urban Solutions, a Canadian company.
A 2011 study by Walk Score ranked Minneapolis the ninth most walkable of 50 largest cities in the United States.
Seven miles (11 km) of enclosed pedestrian bridges called skyways, the Minneapolis Skyway System, link eighty city blocks downtown. Second floor restaurants and retailers connected to these passageways are open on weekdays.
Minneapolis–Saint Paul International Airport (MSP) sits on 3,400 acres (1,400 ha) on the southeast border of the city between Minnesota State Highway 5, Interstate 494, Minnesota State Highway 77, and Minnesota State Highway 62. The airport serves international, domestic, charter and regional carriers and is a hub and home base for Sun Country Airlines, and Compass Airlines. It is also the second largest hub for Delta Air Lines, who fly more flights and passengers out of MSP than any other airline.
Minneapolis has seven hospitals, four ranked among America's best by U.S. News & World Report—Abbott Northwestern Hospital (part of Allina), Children's Hospitals and Clinics, Hennepin County Medical Center (HCMC) and the University of Minnesota Medical Center. Minneapolis VA Medical Center, Shriners Hospitals for Children and Allina's Phillips Eye Institute also serve the city. The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota is a 75-minute drive away.
Cardiac surgery was developed at the university's Variety Club Hospital, where by 1957, more than 200 patients had survived open-heart operations, many of them children. Working with surgeon C. Walton Lillehei, Medtronic began to build portable and implantable cardiac pacemakers about this time.
HCMC opened in 1887 as City Hospital and was also known as General Hospital. A public teaching hospital and Level I trauma center, the HCMC safety net counted 596,397 clinic visits and 109,876 emergency and urgent care visits in 2015. In prior years responsible for about 18% of Minnesota's uncompensated care, HCMC provided much less uncompensated care in 2014 because, after the Affordable Care Act came into effect, its charity care declined more than bad debt went up.
Funded in part by assessments on commercial properties, in 2009 Ambassadors of the Minneapolis Downtown Improvement District (DID) began working on 120 blocks of downtown to improve its cleanliness, friendliness and acceptability of behavior. They are employees of Block by Block, a company in Nashville, Tennessee that serves 46 U.S. cities.
Utility providers are regulated monopolies: Xcel Energy supplies electricity, CenterPoint Energy supplies gas, CenturyLink provides landline telephone service, and Comcast provides cable service. In 2007 citywide wireless internet coverage began, provided for 10 years by US Internet of Minnetonka to residents for about $20 per month and to businesses for $30. The Minneapolis Wi-Fi network earns $1.2 million annual profit and as of 2010 has about 20,000 customers. The city treats and distributes water and requires payment of a monthly solid waste fee for trash removal, recycling, and drop off for large items. Residents who recycle receive a credit. Hazardous waste is handled by Hennepin County drop off sites. After each significant snowfall, called a snow emergency, the Minneapolis Public Works Street Division plows over 1,000 miles (1,609 km) of streets and 400 miles (643.7 km) of alleys—counting both sides, the distance between Minneapolis and Seattle and back. Ordinances govern parking on the plowing routes during these emergencies as well as snow shoveling throughout the city.
Minneapolis has 12 sister cities, as per Sister Cities International:
On the city's website, Winnipeg, Canada is listed as a sister city since 1973, but the two are not listed as sister cities in the organization's 2014 membership directory.
The city also has an informal connection with: Hiroshima, Japan