Project:Right on Lake Street

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“Right on Lake Street" was a collaborative exhibit developed by the Minnesota Historical Society and Macalester College, with design work provided by In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre.

Share Your Lake Street Memories...

Share a memory or story about a place along Lake Street.

Featured Memory:

Schatzlein's Saddle Shop 
I went into Schatzlein's in the summer of 2003 to just look around. Immediately I spotted a glorious red cowboy shirt with gold musical notes sewn into the shoulders. I was tempted to buy it immediately, but put off doing so for almost a week, until I couldn't resist. Along with it I bought a large white ten-gallon hat and brown cowboy boots. Within six months I had taught myself how to twirl a pistol and yodel, and by the following Christmas I had developed a singing cowboy act that I debuted at the Blue Barn Theatre in Omaha, Neb. A lesson that just wandering into a business on Lake Street can transform your life.

- Max Sparber, Minneapolis

Share a memory for one of the following...

Lake Street USA Book

Lake Street USA

In summer and fall of 2000, photographer Wing Young Huie displayed 675 black and white images taken along Lake Street in Minneapolis along six miles of the same street, transforming it into one of the largest photography exhibitions ever displayed in a public space.

Lake Street USA - Purchase Book


Take A Ride On The 21A

Take a whimsical, funky trip through the heart and history of Minneapolis' most vibrant neighborhood.
21A - Right on Lake Street, interactive

Things you can do

Picture of exhibit showing Sears/Midtown Building, Rialto Theater, Avalon Theater
Picture of exhibit showing Sears/Midtown Building, Rialto Theater, Avalon Theater

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Get involved!


Places Along Lake Street

Lake Street Places, Past and Present

Lake Street Neighborhoods


About Right on Lake Street

About Lake Street

Lake Street, a six-mile corridor linking St. Paul and Minneapolis, encompasses 14 neighborhoods and is one of Minneapolis’ most important commercial districts. Lake Street began as the path to the lakes, but for the last century and a half it has been so much more – an entry point for new arrivals, a thoroughfare for those on their way, a boundary line dividing neighborhoods, and a meeting ground bringing diverse ethnic groups together. It has been an economic engine and, at times, a casualty of transformations bigger than itself. Whether an avenue for success, a crossroads or the end of the line, Lake Street has always brought into relief the rich dynamics of a city on the move.

About The Project
In September 2004, the Minnesota Historical Society and Macalester College began exploring ways to partner with local communities to enrich public life and to tell the story, past and present, of one of Minneapolis’ most diverse and ever-changing streets. Students in 12 Macalester classes conducted research projects, between 2004-2007, that engaged residents and organizations on Lake Street. The Lake Street Council advised students on their research and helped bridge connections to community organizations. The student projects covered topics ranging from geography and economics to women’s studies and GIS mapping, many of which provided content for the exhibit, this wiki and the 21A - Right on Lake Street interactive web site.

In the Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theatre joined the project in 2006 to give the exhibit its distinctive visual look. Using papier-mâché, felt, fabric, wire and other set-building materials, In the Heart of the Beast designers, along with Society exhibit developers, are creating a colorful and interactive gallery experience like nothing ever seen before in the Twin Cities. Colorful models re-imagine historic and contemporary buildings, including the Wonderland Rollercoaster from the early 1900s and Calhoun Square from today.

“Right on Lake Street” is not a comprehensive history of Lake Street told by professional historians. Instead, Macalester students were encouraged to explore Lake Street and create projects that highlight the connections between people and place.
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