By Sonjie Johnson
It’s not every day that a Como Park resident finds a 450-million-year-old fossil in his backyard. But that’s what happened to Joel Alter a few years ago.
A retired, non-partisan researcher for the Minnesota Legislature, Joel has lived in Como Park for nearly 40 years. He was digging in a ravine behind his house in 2006 when he unearthed a large piece of limestone. When he picked it up, a section split apart and he saw what appeared to be a fossil.