Anne Jacobson is news director with RiverTown Multimedia.
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Ashton Wieck (left), Cayden White, AJ Mikkelson, Mary Ellen Robertson, Eli Freier and Evan Nelson test their robot during regional Junior FIRST LEGO League competition Saturday, Dec. 9, at Willow Elementary School in Rochester. Donovan Adolph is in the background heading to the practice table. The Twin Bluff Middle School students named their team The Flows because the 2017 theme involved hydrology. They improved their scores every round, coaches Crystal Henderson and Nich Lowman said, and more importantly did well in their project, design and core values presentations.
"Please stop publishing letters about (X). We don't want to read negative opinions in our local newspaper." "When you print people's horrible letters, it reflects badly on our community." "You are aggravating a terrible situation — just let it go away."
Christmas is less than three weeks, so the time to decorate is here. Lights, scents and sounds help to make the season to life. Decorating may be as simple as using a Christmas tablecloth or placing a candle on the mantel. Decorating also can be as complex as lighting the exterior of a home or dramatically transforming the interior. Many area homes and businesses do some of both. Ann Ferrin at Ferrin's Furniture in Red Wing has suggestions on "how to transform your everyday to holiday." Step one: Remove the routine clutter.
You've been asked to bring the beverage for a festive meal. The first thing that may come to your mind is a nice bottle of wine. But what if you'd like to think outside the wine bottle this holiday? There are many fine craft beers available. If you have trouble picking just one, some stores allow you to mix and match them. This way you can suit a variety of palates (and buffet table foods). "Craft beer is a big, big trend," said Kip Earney of West End Liquor in Red Wing. As a result, he carries upwards of 400 varieties.
What became a local tradition began as response to a simple challenge. Bruce Duerkop was going to be alone for Thanksgiving Day 1992, so instead he headed to a gathering organized by a Twin Cities mission group. He later talked about the experience with his pastor. "Why doesn't Red Wing have something like this?" Duerkop recalls asking him. "There are a lot of people who are alone and would like to do something with others." The pastor replied, "Do something about it."
Prairie Island Indian Community's newly elected Tribal Council will feature four women — two of them newcomers to office. The community held the vote Friday, Nov. 3, and announced the winners Wednesday, Nov. 8. The first-time officeholders are Nicole Lehto and Melanie Urich. In addition, three longtime leaders including the current president, Shelley Buck, won re-election. This will be Buck's fourth term. Lu Taylor will start her ninth term. Johnny Johnson, the lone man elected, will start his 12th term.
LAKE CITY — Hearth & Home Technologies takes a box and turns it into something beautiful and functional ... a thousand times a day. In 1992, the company known then as Heat 'N' Glo took a big, empty box and transformed it into a factory that today employs 600 people who manufacture four brands of gas fireplaces and inserts — Heat & Glo, Heatilator, Quadra-Fire and most recently, Majestic.
Red Wing Arts Association has simplified its name and expanded its mission. After 65 years of service, the organization will be called Red Wing Arts. A new logo goes with the new name. "We hope that dropping 'association' from our name makes us more accessible and inviting. Association can sometimes imply a closed type of group," Executive Director Mary Lee said.
Spontaneous applause interrupted the opening of Xcel Energy's annual community breakfast as officials announced a major shift in electrical production. "In 30 months, when we finish our next wind expansion, more than two-thirds of all the energy on our system will be generated by carbon-free resources," said Regional Vice President Greg Chamberlain, who had to stop speaking and ended up joining in the applause.
The Red Wing Area Chamber of Commerce and Red Wing Manufacturers Association have tours, an expo and a luncheon planned to celebrate local manufacturing. October is Manufacturing Month. Chamber President Patty Brown said the Red Wing area will go all out the week of Oct. 23. There are roughly four dozen area manufacturers. "We are so fortunate to have all these manufacturers in our community. They have a significant impact on our economic well-being," Brown said.