St. Paul gets a lot of flack, and is often referred to as "boring" and "old-fashioned." Meanwhile, Minneapolis gets to be the cool kid, with entertainment options galore like First Avenue, the Walker Art Center, the new Vikings stadium, the Guthrie Theater, and the snappy North Loop.
However, St. Paul kicks Minneapolis's ass in more ways than skeptics may realize. So stand up tall, St. Paulites! Here are five things that your beloved St. Paul does better than Minneapolis.
St. Paul's Trees are Taller than Three Paul Bunyans
Take a walk down Summit Avenue where all the mansions are and look at those giant, glorious trees. Betty White's grandma wasn't even born when these guys were planted. Some look like they could hold an entire gated community of cookie-making elves in just one trunk. The trees in St. Paul don't get Dutch Elm Disease. They're too tough for that. (Okay, they do. But they are still the mightiest in the Twin Cities.)
St. Paul's Parking Meters aren't Run by Crazy People
Parking meters uniformly run until 5 p.m. in St. Paul. Parking meters run until god knows when in Minneapolis. Sometimes it's 6 p.m. Sometimes it's 10 p.m. Sometimes it's based on how full the moon is or what the mayor had for lunch. Sometimes it seems like someone runs around with a screwdriver and changes the signs daily. Sometimes there's no sign at all, and you're left wondering if it's some kind of hip new telepathic system they invented. St. Paul meter maids probably don't even give you tickets. They just leave a note that says, "Thanks for visiting. We miss you."
St. Paul Has a Better Flag Than Minneapolis
St. Paul's flag is regal and bold, with strong yellow, red, and blue colors coming right at you. There's a shield that contains symbols representing Fort Snelling and the Capitol, and a crazy wheel with wings that looks like a unicorn unicycle, ready to fly you to Candyland for less than Uber.
Meanwhile, Minneapolis's flag looks like it was made by some hungover dude who forgot how to make things. There are two colors, blue and white. Then there's four quadrants with symbols that represent things only egg-heads think attracts people to a town. "Hey everybody, come to Minneapolis! We have buildings, rulers, microscopes, and freakin' wooden boat wheels! Bring your litmus test strips and petrie dishes, because it's going to be a straight up party!"
St. Paul's Food Festivals Dwarf Minneapolis's by About 30,000 Fried Twinkies
Minneapolis has plenty of food festivals and events, but usually it's wrapped up in something annoyingly ironic with a few thousand drunk twentysomethings dressed as hipster zombies. Nobody wants fake blood, brains, and horn-rimmed glasses in their hash browns.
Meanwhile, St. Paul doesn't resort to any gimmicks, it just goes straight for the arteries. The Minnesota State Fair will deep fry anything that doesn't currently have a pulse. The Festival of Nations will present you with a mind-blowing selection of international food. Grand Old Day is so full of amazing face-stuffing opportunities that St. Paul keeps it at only one day for your own protection. Highland Fest's schedule advertises food vendors and beer tastings. St. Paul: It's a barf-filled washing-machine just waiting to happen. Minneapolis would never risk that kind of melange.
St. Paul Does Winter Better
Minneapolis's answer to the cold winter months is to build an entire town's worth of skyways/habitrails, turning us into hamsters. Sure, St. Paul has skyways too, but they also say, "Screw that, we're building an ice castle." The Winter Carnival organizes outdoor runs, parades, treasure hunts, frisbee-golf tournaments, and every other insane thing you could think of that would make you lose fingers from hypothermia. In addition, they also host Red Bull's Crashed Ice each year, they turn Rice Park into an outdoor ice rink, and they host more than one wintertime bar crawl with outdoor activities. While Minneapolis often runs and hides from the cold, St. Paul gives winter the finger and sticks its tongue on the pole.