Mike Binkley has been covering Minnesota news for more than 25 years. He joined the WCCO family in 2008 after 20 years with KSTP.
Mike co-anchors the nightly weekend newscasts. The 10 p.m. Sunday shows feature his Emmy-nominated Finding Minnesota reports.
Mike has been honored with six Upper Midwest Emmy awards for newscasts he co-anchored.
Mike and his wife, Mary, are dog lovers and avid bicyclists who love to explore Minnesota’s bike trails. They have also gone on biking adventures in France, Costa Rica, Spain, Hawaii and the Swiss Alps.
In the summer, one of his favorite hangouts is Target Field, where he averages about 20 Twins games a season. He is also a big fan of the Vikings and Timberwolves, but saves much of his winter sports passion for the Kansas Jayhawks basketball team.
Before arriving in the Twin Cities, he worked at WCPO-TV in Cincinnati and WIBW-TV in Topeka, Kansas.
Winemaking has brought sweet success to one Minnesota family, but they’ve been stung many times in the process. WineHaven is an award-winning vineyard and winery, but its best-selling product doesn’t involve any grapes at all. It’s a wine made of honey.
There was emotional reaction from parents Wednesday afternoon over a controversy involving school sports and gender. The State High School League is trying to offer direction to coaches when a transgender student wants to join a team.
Minnesota is home to many legendary theaters like the Guthrie, the Orpheum, the Ordway and the Pantages. But how about Barb and Mario’s garage in Bloomington?
It’s the place to call when a hurt bird needs help. The Raptor Center’s wildlife hospital has treated more than 16,000 birds during the last 40 years. Already, it’s helped 580 owls, eagles and falcons in 2014.
In their final home game of the 2014 season, the Minnesota Twins treated their fans to something rather uncommon: a victory. The team now has four games left in Detroit before the season ends. It’s the fourth straight season that the Twins have lost at least 90 games.
Oktoberfest celebrations have already started — even though it’s still September — and one popular spot is still going strong, in spite of critics who said they’d never make it.
Dozens of teenagers who used to be welcome to play sports at Minneapolis Public Schools have now been kicked off their teams, and it’s not because they misbehaved or played poorly.
With cameras and binoculars in hand, bird lovers are starting to flock to Hawk Ridge, a scenic overlook on the edge of Duluth.
The fastest developing neighborhood in Minneapolis is also one of the toughest areas on vehicles and their suspension systems. You could call it the North Loop Bounce — the feel of driving over brick streets built for a different century. Steve Young rumbles his way along the uneven surfaces several times a day.
People often build outdoor swing sets, tree houses and even skating rinks outside for their kids. But in southern Minnesota, Greg Krueger has created a playground that’s all indoors, and all for his cats.
Before you know it, the trees in Minnesota will be turning bright shades of yellow, orange and red. Some of the most spectacular views in the state can be found along the Superior Hiking Trail in the Arrowhead region.
It does a man good to have hobbies that bring him joy, but there are times when that passion veers into territory that no one saw coming. Bruce Bauer took a manure spreader, farm antiques and a ’93 Chevy S-10 pickup chassis to build a thing of beauty.
A Twin Cities girl is recovering from puncture wounds, scratches and bruises after a frightening attack in the water. Rory Kliewer, 12, was climbing out of Bone Lake near Luck, Wis., Saturday when a large otter jumped on her and wouldn’t let go. At first, she thought it was a fish.
Sometimes, it takes a while before you can act on your dreams. One grandmother from Brooklyn Park, Minn. has been talking about skydiving for a long time. Sunday, her big moment finally came.
Drivers do a lot of double takes along I-35 in the south metro, where a life-sized shark statue is on a hillside next to a replica submarine, rocket ship and something resembling a Martian vehicle. They’re there to draw attention to Hot Sam’s, an antique shop overlooking an eclectic salvage yard that’s been nicknamed an “antique theme park.”
Sometimes people think they’re witnessing disaster at a Minnesota lake when they see a classic car plunge into the water. But then, the car doesn’t sink; it floats. Minnesota has several collectors of Amphicars, quirky vehicles that are part car, part boat.
Target unveiled its latest store concept in Minneapolis’ Dinkytown neighborhood Wednesday, and it’s the smallest one yet. TargetExpress, at the corner of SE 5th Street and SE 14th Avenue, is one-sixth the size of a traditional Target, about one-ninth the size of a SuperTarget. It’s focused on essentials that people nearby would want.
A foot chase through a north Minneapolis neighborhood Friday ended with a teenager in handcuffs. But it also had sad consequences for neighbors caught in the middle. An officer shot and killed a dog that had nothing to do with the kid being chased. But that kid’s actions played a big part.
From Shriners to baseball fans, we’re seeing a lot of tourists in downtown Minneapolis this summer. They can get around quickly with taxis, light rail and shuttles. But for those who want a closer, more personal look at the city, there’s Stephanie Croteau and her company, The Fit Tourist, offering biking and walking tours of the city.
Even with more than 90 losses for three straight seasons, the Minnesota Twins have averaged more than 30,000 fans a game since Target Field opened in 2010. The ballpark itself is clearly part of the draw. “I love the architecture,” Jessi Oeltjen of Spring Valley said. “I’m a design buff, so just the architecture, the design, the layout. Once you get inside, there is not a bad seat in the house.”
An NHL star was among those moved last month by the heroism of 10-year-old Nino Johnson, of Maplewood, who saved his grandfather, Pino Lipari, from drowning. Lipari was in his backyard pool playing ball with his grandson, when the ball drifted into the deep end. Lipari is not a strong swimmer, but tried to retrieve the ball anyway.
It’s been 90 years since three pigs unwittingly discovered one of Minnesota’s hidden treasures. The animals fell through a sinkhole in a pasture in 1924 and their squeals led searchers into a previously unseen series of underground tunnels, now known as Niagara Cave. For many centuries, water had slowly been chiseling, molding and sculpting through a half mile section of limestone beneath a Fillmore County farm field.
The people of Duluth are enjoying some national recognition. Readers of Outside Magazine voted online and declared Duluth the best town in the nation. It does offer plenty of ways to get people off the couch and out of the house, from hiking and biking to kayaking and climbing. And many people get started at a young age.
A near tragedy in a backyard swimming pool managed to strengthen the bond between a man and his only grandson. Pino Lipari, 65, grew up near the beaches of Palermo, Sicily, but has never been much of a swimmer. On June 20, he was with his grandson, Nino Johnson, in the shallow end when he slipped into deeper water and tried to paddle to the side.
>Minnesotans involved in the fight against Native American mascots are cheering Wednesday’s federal action against the NFL’s Washington Redskins.