Best of

the Twin Cities

Best Politician

John Kriesel

In today's divisive world of Minnesota politics, sane moments are hard to come by. That's why Republican John Kriesel made such an impression. At the end of the 2011 legislative session, when everyone was ignoring the pressing budget crisis in favor of a constitutional amendment to ban gay marriage, Kriesel was one of the only Republicans who refused to toe the party line. In one of the most moving speeches given by a Minnesota politician in recent memory, Kriesel, a veteran of the Iraq war, publicly denounced the amendment, declaring that any soldiers who can fight for their country should have the right to come home and marry their loved ones. "This amendment doesn't represent what I went to fight for," declared Kriesel. This passion has defined Kriesel's short tenure as a Minnesota Republican. He's among a minority of legislators who actually votes the way he sees fit, rather than how the party overlords tell him to. It's a shame that Kriesel recently announced he would be retiring from the Legislature. The way things are going, we can use all the sanity we can get.

Best Break-Up Spot Nickelodeon Universe

Best Building Cathedral of St. Paul

Best Bus Route Route 94

Best Charity The Bridge for Youth

Best Corner Grand Avenue and West 46th Street

Best Festival MNfashion's Minneapolis-St. Paul Fashion Week

Best Hipster Neighborhood Seward

Best Lake Cedar Lake

Best Local Blog Ripple in Stillwater

Best Local Boy Made Good Jim Burke

Best Local Girl Made Good Semonti Stephens

Best Local Website MPLS Bike Love

Best Local YouTube Video Street Stories

Best Make-Out Spot Prohibition, W Minneapolis—The Foshay

Best Meme The Duck-Dog Debacle

Best Myth Stillwater Bigfoot

Best Neighborhood Armatage

Best Place for a First Date Target Free Thursday Nights at Walker Art Center

Best Place to Do Something for Free Art Shanty Projects

Best Place to Meet Single Men (Gay) Camp Bar

Best Place to Meet Single Men (Straight) Fulton Brewing Taproom

Best Place to Meet Single Women (Straight) Hipshaker at the Kitty Cat Klub

Best Place to Meet Women (Lesbian) Grown & Sexy at Hell's Kitchen

Best Place to People-Watch Saintly City Cat Club events

Best Place to Take Out-of-Town Guests St. Anthony Falls

Best Scandal Koch-Brodkorbgate

Best Sign of Spring Return of the food trucks

Best Sign of Spring Return of the food trucks

Best Sign of Spring Return of the food trucks

Best Sign of Spring Return of the food trucks

Best State Fair Food Sweet corn ice cream at Blue Moon Dine-in theater

Best Street Lake Street

Best Strip Club The Seville

Best Tourist Attraction Minnesota State Fair

Best Tweeter Chris Kluwe, a.k.a. @chriswarcraft

Best Undiscovered Neighborhood St. Paul's North End

Best View Minneapolis skyline from the Minneapolis Institute of Arts

Best Villain Michael Brodkorb