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​What Fargo-Moorhead still needs

Editorial | November 7th, 2013

Let’s just say, Vinyl Taco has raised the damn bar. That place is cool.

But Fargo-Moorhead still could use more “cool” spots if we want to make this place truly, madly, deeply happening.

If I had the money, here’s what I’d add to F-M.

-A hip brunch joint.

Coffee. Buckwheat blueberry pancakes. Maple Syrup. Eggs. Warm croissants. Wood floors. Sassy young servers sporting navy blue aprons. Silver bells. Perky jams. Crammed, scuffed walkways. Goodness, we need a place like this for Sunday mornings. In fact, we need an option like this everyday.

-A state-of-the-art outdoor football/track and field stadium.

NDSU’s outdoor track kind of stinks and yet its track team is very, very good. The Fargodome is nice, but it’s all indoors and doesn’t have a track. Concordia’s outdoor facility is decent, but it was measured incorrectly – the track slightly shorter than 400 meters.

How fabulous would it be to actually host a legitimate NCAA regional or national track meet? And clearly, our town loves football. The Bison are kind of amazing. So we vote for NDSU to build an outdoor stadium to give our area’s thousands of Bison Football fans what they’d love.

-A music venue that is slightly bigger (or perhaps even way smaller) than The Aquarium, not quite as huge as The Venue and not sit-down like the Fargo Theatre.

Part of what makes Fargo-Moorhead awesome is, for such a small community, we are very welcoming to out-of-state musicians and bands, mainstream, indie and everything in between. The Aquarium does an amazing a job of bringing in indie and on-the-rise acts. Perhaps if we had another venue with a wider selection of food, drinks, ambience and seating, we could bring in an even wider selection of music.

This music venue could even work as a full-service bar and restaurant with killer, one-of-a-kind food options.

There are hundreds of bars in the FM community and yet (correct me if I’m wrong on this) The Aquarium, The Red Raven, The Listening Room, The New Direction, Studio 222 and The HoDo are of the small minority of places that support original music – a majority of the time.

This is not meant to be a stand against cover bands (I am in one). We’re just saying local original music needs more – way more – support.

-A vegan/vegetarian restaurant.

The Green Market is already dearly missed. We need another joint up its alley. Yes, F-M has a number of places that offer vegetarian options, yet it’s still always limited and hardly any places in town are vegan-friendly. A place solely dedicated to all things green, healthy and local could encourage community wellness.

-A Fargo Music Festival.

Not a blues festival, not a fundraiser, not a women’s festival, not a roots festival – A Fargo Music Festival. We could find a big open space, like the Fargodome parking lot, The Pepsi Soccer Complex, the fairgrounds or even The Hub again like we did for two years for the Old Man Winter Roots Music Festival. Something!

Not only that, we could book some of our very own local bands to perform at this festival.

Now that we no longer have 10K Lakes Festival, this could partially make up for it.

-A gay bar.

Too early? I don’t think so. If any of you attended FM Pride this year, you’d know that Fargo-Moorhead could use a gay bar – or at least an outspokenly “gay-friendly” bar – perhaps one that doesn’t feel so dive-y and dumpy.

-A downtown grocery store.

Hornbacher’s, any plans? An express one could do the trick.

-A broader recycling facility.

F-M is getting better, but some types of plastics, cardboards and aluminums are still not being accepted in town. This should change.

According to National Geographic, “Recycling—substituting scrap for virgin materials—not only conserves natural resources and reduces the amount of waste that must be burned or buried, it also reduces pollution and the demand for energy.”

-A bar or restaurant that regularly hosts ballroom dancing.

Top 40 and dubstep must not be our only options to dance to on a Saturday night. Some of us like to swing, waltz, disco, tango, salsa, rumba, boogie, two-step, polka and cha-cha.

Dancing is good for the soul, heart, mind and body. Let’s make this happen, especially now that The Avalon’s swing dancing nights are no more.

**Do you have any ideas for what you want to see in Fargo-Moorhead? Let us know on Facebook!

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