My North Series

My North: 52 Minnesota Stories

We're counting down to Super Bowl 52 with 52 Minnesota stories. This video series features notable Minnesotans, from artists to athletes to entertainers.

Visit our Youtube channel to watch the entire series.

My North is a weekly video series created by Mpls St Paul Magazine and presented by Explore Minnesota.

  • Steve Zahn

    Episode 26: Steve Zahn

    With 20-plus years of co-starring roles in Hollywood blockbusters ranging from 'Dallas Buyers Club' to 'War of the Planet of the Apes,' Steve Zahn is kind of a big deal these days. But the Marshall, Minnesota born actor who grew up in Robbinsdale and went to college at Gustavus, didn’t get his start on the big screen; he got it on the stage of the Old Log Theatre in Excelsior. Read more

  • Polica

    Episode 25: Poliça

    Poliça first came together with ambitions to make a few records and play in local venues. Little did this Minneapolis-based enigmatic synth-rock band know, they would soon be touring internationally. Read more

  • Photographer Jim Brandenburg

    Episode 24: Jim Brandenburg

    Jim Brandenburg has traveled the globe as a National Geographic photographer. He's captured the flamingos in Namibia and the wolves in France, but his most cherished photos are from his favorite place—his home state, Minnesota. Read more

  • Poppy Harlow

    Episode 23: Poppy Harlow

    CNN anchor and Minneapolis native Poppy Harlow has lived in New York since she was 18 and is a self-described workaholic, but she still sneaks in trips back to her home state to unwind and enjoy the lakes she grew up on. Read more

  • P.J. Fleck

    Episode 22: P.J. Fleck

    New University of Minnesota Golden Gopher P.J. Fleck is a Chicago-native but has already adopted Minnesota as his new home state. Here's his ode to Minnesota. Read more

  • Har Mar Superstar

    Episode 21: Har Mar Superstar

    Born and raised in Minnesota, Sean Tillman, aka Har Mar Superstar, is best known for his over-the-top pop soulster performances. When he’s not busy touring the U.S., or appearing in flicks like 'Pitch Perfect,' he bails on the rockstar life and heads waaay up north to a cabin on the Gunflint Trail. Read more

  • Twins Manager Paul Molitor

    Episode 20: Paul Molitor

    Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Paul Molitor spends most of his summer leaning against the railing on the bottom step of the dugout as he lives the dream by managing his hometown team, the Minnesota Twins. And while that’s no shabby way to spend a summer, Molitor admits to sometimes wishing he had just a little bit more time away from the field to enjoy other Minnesota summertime activities. Read more

  • Chef Amy Thielen

    Episode 19: Amy Thielen

    In 2014 Food network star, chef, and writer Amy Thielen won the James Beard Foundation Book Award for American Cooking for her cookbook, The New Midwestern Table: 200 Heartland Recipes. Earning the Oscar of the food world was a milestone for the Park Rapids foodie, who moved back to Minnesota after working at some of the most elite restaurants in Manhattan. Read more

  • Cloud Cult

    Episode 18: Cloud Cult

    When Craig Minowa, frontman of the alternative rock band Cloud Cult, wants to write music and be inspired, he doesn’t seek the bustle and bright lights of the city, he retreats to the Minnesota woods. Read more

  • Children's Theatre Company

    Episode 17: Dean Holt and Reed Sigmund

    The Twin Cities is teeming with legendary theaters and a cast of world-class thespians to populate their stages. But chief among the talented lot are a pair of actors from a theater for kids: Dean Holt and Reed Sigmund, resident acting company members at the Children’s Theatre Company. Read more

  • Ted Marti

    Episode 16: Ted Marti

    In 1860, just six years after New Ulm was founded, August Schell opened a brewery that would eventually come to define the city. In the 157 years since, the two have been inextricably linked—the success and growth of the one tied steadfastly to the other. And at the center of it all, always, August Schell’s family. Today Ted Marti runs the show while his three sons—the sixth generation of the business— do their distinct parts to help. Read more

  • The band Low

    Episode 15: Low

    When the co-founders of the rock band Low, Alan Sparhawk and Mimi Rogers, look out their front window, they see the endless expanse of one of the most storied lakes in the whole world: Lake Superior. The globally renowned electro rock band set deep roots in Duluth—a location, they say, that drives their creativity. Read more

  • Genevieve Gorder

    Episode 14: Genevieve Gorder

    Designer Genevieve Gorder bid adieu to Minnesota right after high school and soon found a TV career in Manhattan. And while the HGTV star is now living large in N.Y.C., she still yearns for the humbleness (and lakes!) of her home state. Read more

  • Alec Soth

    Episode 13: Alec Soth

    Internationally acclaimed photographer Alec Soth is known for his haunting, large-scale photographs of the modern American diaspora. His far-flung travels have given him a newfound perspective and appreciation for the cultural life in Minnesota. Read more

  • Osmo Vänskä

    Episode 12: Osmo Vänskä

    When Minnesota Orchestra Music Director Osmo Vänskä isn’t running one of the most celebrated orchestras in the world or watching hockey (he is a native of Finland after all), he’s probably cruising on his motorcycle across the state. Read more

  • Wild hockey player Mikko Koivu

    Episode 11: Mikko Koivu

    Minnesota Wild captain Mikko Koivu has called the state of hockey home during the season since 2004. The Finland native felt at home right away, both on and off the rink, and he is happy to have found a place where hockey is truly in the blood. Read more

  • Alan Page

    Episode 10: Alan Page

    When NFL Hall of Famer and former Minnesota Supreme Court Justice Alan Page isn’t writing children’s books or working with the Page Education Foundation, he’s up at his cabin north of Brainerd communing with his maple trees and making syrup. Read more

  • Actress Kylie Bunbury

    Episode 9: Kylie Bunbury

    Kylie Bunbury, the star of Pitch on 'Fox,' may be soaking up the Hollywood limelight these days, but she is always itching to come back to Minnesota to visit her family and take in the lakes, fresh air, and, of course, some cheese curds and Sweet Martha’s cookies at the Minnesota State Fair. Read more

  • Explorer Ann Bancroft

    Episode 8: Ann Bancroft

    Explorer and educator Ann Bancroft has trekked the North and South Poles (and was the first woman to do so!), but she always looks forward to coming home to her quiet farm in Scandia, Minnesota after her journeys. Read more

  • Marlon James

    Episode 7: Marlon James

    Nearly a decade ago Marlon James moved from Jamaica to Minnesota for a teaching appointment at Macalester College. Today, the 2015 Man Booker Prize-winning author of “A Brief History of Seven Killings” is a bonafide literary superstar but chooses to stay in Minneapolis because the city inspired the sense of openness and potential that allowed him to write his breakout novel in the first place. Read more

  • Wild hockey player Zach Parise

    Episode 6: Zach Parise

    After growing up in Minnesota, Zach Parise knew he wanted to capitalize on his free agent status in the NHL and return home to play left wing for the Wild. Read more

  • Nora McInerny

    Episode 5: Nora McInerny

    Native Minnesotan Nora McInerny moved to New York and eventually came back home to "have more space." In this space, she has founded Still Kickin, a non-profit that assists local families through difficult times, hosted American Public Media’s podcast ‘Terrible, Thanks for Asking,' and wrote ‘It's Okay to Laugh (Crying is Cool, Too).’ Read more

  • Chef Gavin Kaysen

    Episode 4: Gavin Kaysen

    Chef Gavin Kaysen has cooked all over the world at top-notch restaurants. The James Beard Award-winning chef was beckoned back home to open Spoon and Stable in Minneapolis. Read more

  • Timberwolves player Tyus Jones

    Episode 3: Tyus Jones

    Tyus Jones' standout basketball career at Apple Valley High School led him to play for Duke University. He eventually returned home to play point guard for the his dream team—the Timberwolves. Read more

  • Polar explorer Will Steger

    Episode 2: Will Steger

    A native Minnesotan, internationally-renowned polar explorer Will Steger traded in the comforts of urban living more than 25 years ago and now lives “off the grid” in the wilderness outside of Ely. He led the first dogsled journey to the North Pole. Read more

  • Louie Anderson

    Episode 1: Louie Anderson

    Comedian Louie Anderson was born and raised in St. Paul and is an alum of Minneapolis's Brave New Workshop. He currently stars in the Emmy Award-winning role of Christine in FX's 'Baskets.' Despite his big fame, Anderson still enjoys coming home to perform for his fellow Minnesotans. Read more