2009 Saint Paul Almanac on Sale Online on Aug. 20

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Third edition of unique guidebook to Minnesota's capital city to hit bookstores in time for Republican National Convention

Cover of 2009 Saint Paul Almanac

My hope is that the Almanac begins a conversation between people about what the place they live in means to them.

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Now in its third year, the Saint Paul Almanac is the only guidebook dedicated solely to Minnesota's capital city. Including a calendar, date book, restaurant reviews, essays and poems about Saint Paul, the Almanac is a rich resource for anyone wishing to explore the cultural and social depths of Saint Paul throughout the year.

Contributors include notable Saint Paulites such as Garrison Keillor, Gordon Parks, Patricia Hampl, Carol Connolly, Jim Moore, Deborah Keenan, Mahmoud El-Kati, Phebe Hanson, and 75 other writers.

The 368-page 2009 Saint Paul Almanac is on sale now for $11.95 online at saintpaulalmanac.com, and will be available in mainstream bookstores, including Barnes & Noble, Borders, and Amazon.com on September 1st, in time for the Republican National Convention, during which 50,000 new visitors are expected to descend upon the city.

Apart from its obvious function as a travel guidebook, the Almanac aims to preserve individual and community stories, welcome newcomers into Saint Paul's yeasty mixture of communities through writing, and produce what will amount to a collective, communal memory for Saint Paul.

They say community is dead, the book is dead, and story lies dying. Editor Kimberly Nightingale, schooled most recently at the Hubert Humphrey Institute of the University of Minnesota says, "Not in Saint Paul. All my experiences have taught me that place matters deeply. Stories matter. Stories may be as important as food for survival."

This realization coalesced into the vision Nightingale had for creating a book about living in St. Paul as defined by time (the calendar) and combining that with articles, stories, and poems that reflect on the city in a more timeless way.

"My hope is that the Almanac begins a conversation between people about what the place they live in means to them."

The Saint Paul Almanac solicits and revels in the work of authors and poets, including Saint Paul's most prominent writers. There are contributions from baseball fanatics; hot rodders; quirky Rangers (the Minnesota term for sturdy northerners from the cold Mesabi Iron Range); and newcomers from as far afield as Cambodia, Somalia, Mexico, Ethiopia, and the Twin Cities' equally exotic distant suburbs.

The Almanac offers something for everything--a range of short stories, essays, mild political screeds, immigration tales, memoirs, and calendar of events that has not seen its parallel since the subscription omnigatherums of the late nineteenth century. Its variety makes the Almanac great reading for the bedside table, the deck, or the outdoor coffee house.

Writers' contributions charm and win the trust of readers through attentiveness to the tales they tell. Most of the Almanac's editorial selections are excursions into neighborhood, family, or personal history, whose enjoyment lies in their modesty and detail. You can almost hear a child nudging each writer forward: "And then what happened?!"

The result, as Minnesotans might put it, is "not so bad"---a plucky annual celebrating difference, similarity, wholeness, and weirdness.

ISBN: 978-0-9772651-4-5 368 pages, 5-3/16 x 8 inches, PB with layflat binding

"A practical, informative, and at times personal reference of all things St. Paul." --City Pages

"A compendium of local event calendars, resources and tips, combined with personal stories, history and secrets. All that, and plenty of room to scribble your own plans, insights and lists." --Star Tribune

Press and Publicity Contact
Jan Zita Grover

Saint Paul Almanac Contact
Kimberly Nightingale

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Jan Zita Grover, Press

Kimberly Nightingale, Editor
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