In St. Paul, the second most populous city in Minnesota, TDS provides business and residential service. And, it’s home to VISI, a TDS HMS company. But, if history had gone a bit differently, the mailing addresses for everyone in St. Paul would have been “Pig’s Eye, Minnesota”.
Pig’s Eye was the name of a tavern located on Fort Snelling, established in the area at the intersection of the Mississippi and Minnesota Rivers in 1819. The name stuck, and locals called the area Pig’s Eye (or Pig’s Eye Landing) until around 1841 when a minister established a chapel named after his favorite Saint. With a little encouragement from the minister, the name of the community changed to St. Paul and in 1849 it became the capital of the Minnesota Territory.
Today, St. Paul is a community of almost 300,000 people and has the most Mississippi River shoreline of any other city. In addition to being the capital of Minnesota, St. Paul is also the home of the Minnesota Wild hockey team and businesses such as VISI, Ecolab, Securian Financial Group, and Gander Mountain.
It is true that St. Paul has the coldest annual mean temperature (45.4 degrees) of any major metropolitan area in the continental U.S., but don’t let that deter you from visiting. In fact, if you come in January, be sure to come during the St. Paul Winter Carnival. It is the oldest and largest winter festival in the United States—and it began in reaction to a reporter calling St. Paul, “another Siberia, unfit for human habitation in the winter.” Now in its 128th year, the Winter Carnival includes parades, snow sculptures, ice carving, geo caching, hot air balloons, and more.
If you prefer to visit when the weather is warmer, check out the large bronze Peanuts comic character statues in a park across from the Landmark Center. The statues are in homage to cartoonist Charles Schultz, who grew up in St. Paul and attended Central High School. If Victorian-era architecture is more your thing, take a walk down Summit Avenue, the longest preserved Victorian avenue in the country. In addition to being the site of the Governor’s Residence, authors F. Scott Fitzgerald and Sinclair Lewis both lived on Summit Avenue at one time.