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HFD Kept Busy Over the Weekend

The Hastings Fire Department responded to numerous calls over the weekend. Hastings Fire Chief Mike Schutt talks about how his crews were kept busy.

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Chief Schutt also commented on this spring's dry conditions.

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School Board Talks about Facebook Page

The Hastings School Board talked about the activity on its newly-opened Facebook page at the regular meeting on March 25th. Coordinator of District Services Deanna Werner talks about the types of comments posted.

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Werner also talked about the demographic that "Like" the page.

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(photo of said Facebook page)

   

Spring Workshop Coming Up at HHS

The College Advisors Network has opened registration for its Spring Workshop at Hastings High School. Marketing Director for College Advisors Network Gloria Weinblatt gives the details.

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Edina Realty Holding Annual Easter Egg Hunt

Edina Realty is holding its 28th annual Easter Egg Hunt. Sandy Becker of Edina Realty in Hastings talks about this year's event.

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Cottage Grove Chamber of Commerce Offering Scholarships

The Cottage Grove Area Chamber of Commerce is offering scholarships. Seniors that reside in Cottage Grove, Newport, St. Paul Park or who attend Park High School are eligible for one of four $1000 scholarships if they plan on pursuing post-secondary education at either a two-year or four-year educational or vocational institution in the summer or fall of 2015. Students will be selected based on their response to the question, "If you were to return to your community following your education, how would you be involved in the community and what would you do to improve it?" Students are also asked to provide, in resume format, a brief description of their involvement in school activities and any volunteer and work experience. Further basis for awarding scholarships will be on participation and leadership in school and community activities, work experience, academic achievement and personal circumstances relating to the need for scholarship support. Applications are available in local school counseling offices, at the Cottage Grove Area Chamber of Commerce office, or on the Chamber website at: www.cottagegrovechamber.org. Applications will be accepted between March 9th and April 10th.

   

"United We Stand" Events Coming Up

The Washington County Sheriff's Office along with other county police and public safety departments is hosting "United We Stand," a series of community forum events specifically tailored for Washington County to raise awareness about the dangers of drug abuse. Community members are invited to attend and listen to young adults from Washington County share their personal stories of substance abuse, and how their recreational drug use evolved into addiction. The forums, sponsored in cooperation with Know the Truth, the substance abuse prevention program of Minnesota Adult and Teen Challenge, will be held on March 26th, April 2nd, and April 9th at different high schools in the county. Contact Cmdr. Brian R. Mueller at 651-430-7802 for further information.

   

City Council Approves Agreement with Rotary Club

The Hastings City Council has approved a Contribution Agreement between the City and the Hastings Area Rotary Foundation. The agreement places a good faith requirement upon the Rotary to continue its fundraising activities until it reaches its goal of $500,000 in contributions for the pavilion in Phase 2 of the Riverfront Renaissance Project. The City has committed to constructing the pavilion. The agreement does not allow the city to recover from the Rotary or its members any amount by which the fundraising goals fall short of the targeted $500,000. The city agrees to make up the difference between the actual amount raised and the targeted amount and to pay project costs charged by the contractor in excess of $500,000. The Rotary would be expected to continue fundraising efforts even after city funds were expended and to reimburse the city for those additional costs. To date, the Rotary has raised approximately $400,000 for the project.

   

HFD's Paid-On-Call Firefighters Making Progress

The Hastings Fire Department will soon be filling some of its vacant positions. Hastings Fire Chief Mike Schutt talks about the progress of the newest Paid-On-Call Firefighters.

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24-Hour Play Challenge Returns

What a difference a day can make. Black Dirt Theater will prove that adage this Friday, March 27th when the 2nd 24-hour play challenge will debut the work of 7 directors and casts who will come together to perform original plays with only 1 day to prepare for an audience. Directors this year were selected to head the volunteers who will receive their assignments, characters and lines on Friday evening, then take the rest of the night to create the presentation that will be performed in the High School auditorium at 7:00pm on Saturday. Directors this year are Thomas Bonneville, Laura Burgess, Justin and Kristin Schaack, Darlene Olson, Steve Soler, Tom Sorenson and David Wasylik. Writers for the pieces are Bobbi Hanson, Rand Higbee, Miriam King, Aaron Henry, Mikos Mitchell, Joren Skov and Maggie Weiss. Tickets for the performances are $10 and additional details found online at www.blackdirttheater.com.

   

Musical Instrument Fair Coming to HHS

It seems like we're always being told to look, but don't touch. The upcoming musical instrument fair is the perfect place for your child to explore a possible band or orchestra instrument. Teachers and other volunteers will be on hand Monday, March 30th from 5:00-7:00pm in the Hastings High School performance arts area for your student to have a hands on opportunity to see, hear and to try several instruments they may want to consider before beginning the 5th grade music programs in the fall. Instrument specialists from Groth and Eckroth music stores will also provide rental information and typical payment plans for beginning band or orchestra students. This event will also be repeated on Tuesday, April 7th from 6:00-7:00pm. Children of all ages are welcome.

   

Standoff with Suicidal Man Ends Peacefully

The Washington County Sheriff's Department Closed down part of U.S. Highway 10 in Denmark Township for a short time on the afternoon of Monday, March 23rd. Washington County Sheriff's Patrol Sergeant Timothy Tuthill explains.

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Prescott Police Chief Gary Krutke talks about his department's role in the incident.

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Shoplifter Foiled in Unusual Way

The recent weather changes have brought some predictable calls to Cottage Grove police. Snow covered streets and highways resulted in numerous traffic accidents and medical calls from shoveling heavy wet snow were reported as well. Another type of call, however, is not so typical. Chief Craig Wollery of the Cottage Grove Police tells KDWA about a shoplifting incident with an unexpected conclusion.

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We then asked Chief Wollery if the actions were a recommended response to the incident.

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Dakota County Juvenile Prosecution Stats Released

The Dakota County Attorney's Office has released the Juvenile Prosecution Statistics for 2014. The number of juvenile offenders charged with all levels of crimes dropped nearly 4% from the previous year while juvenile offenders charged with felony-level crimes increased 37%. Though there was an increase in juvenile felony charges in 2014, Dakota County Attorney Jim Backstrom notes that these types of charges have decreased steadily over the past eight years and the number of felonies charged last year was less than half of those charged in 2005. The Dakota County Attorney's Office coordinates a number of youth accountability programs for first-time offenders involved in the illegal use of alcohol, small amounts of marijuana and lower-level property crimes. The programs resolve these cases outside of the court process allowing youth to learn from their mistakes and avoid a criminal record.

Recap: Prescott City Council Meeting

The Prescott City Council met on Monday, March 23rd. Prescott City Administrator Jayne Brand talks about the meeting.

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Man Caught with Meth in Dakota County Courthouse

A Hastings man has been charged with one count of fifth degree possession of a controlled substance and one count of fleeing an officer, after he tried to enter the Dakota County Courthouse with methamphetamine. Donald Sherry III was observed by officers as he lingered outside and then stopped at a trash can before entering the courthouse on March 16th. Once inside Sherry acted suspiciously when he took off his coat for the X-ray machine and then fled the courthouse when confronted. When he was pursued, he resisted arrest and it took several officers to restrain him. Officers found almost three grams of meth in Sherry's coat and the trash can outside the courthouse.

Dakota County to Offer Recycling and Waste Prevention Classes

Dakota County is offering Master Recycler/Composter classes to provide instruction on waste prevention, recycling and composting. The program extends six weeks with a three-hour class each week and is open to people who live or work in Dakota County. Once classes are complete, participants will volunteer 30 hours putting their skills to work to help others in the community learn how to reduce the amount of natural resources used, reuse goods and recycle more at different locations. Classes will be held from 6:00-9:00pm Tuesdays, April 28th-June 2nd, at the Dodge Nature Center in West St. Paul. Cost is $30 and covers course materials and field trip transportation. For more information or to apply for the classes, visit www.dakotacounty.us or call Jennifer Kedward at 952-891-7043. The deadline for applications is April 24th.

   

HFS Still Working Toward Goal for MN Food Share Month

Hastings Family Service is still working working toward their goal of raising $160,000 and 25,000 pounds of food during MN Food Share Month. Hastings Family Service Communications Assistant Kelsy Matula announces two more events that ask residents to become change agents for hunger.

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City Council Approves 2015 Nick Clare Memorial Run

The Hastings City Council has approved the 2015 Nick Clare Memorial Run. The annual event benefits youth in Hastings through educational scholarships at Hastings High School. The City will provide police reserve presence for the safety of the event and to assist with traffic management. The 10K route that starts at the YMCA and goes around Lake Rebecca will require a police presence at Monroe St. and Co. Rd. 42, 1st Street and Co. Rd. 42, Pleasant Dr. and 1st St., and Pleasant Ave and 4th St. This year's run will be on Saturday, May 2nd at 8:30am.

   

United Way of Hastings Teams Up with Green Mill

You can support the community by eating pizza at Green Mill on Tuesday, March 24th. United Way of Hastings Administrative Coordinator Tiffany Peine explains.

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(photo by Reggie Bauer)

   

GRRVLC Hosting Painting Demo

The Great River Road Visitor and Learning Center at Freedom Park will be holding a rare after-hours event on Friday, March 27th when they host a painting demonstration with Beth Bacon. Freedom Park Executive Director Jessica Bierbrauer talks about the event.

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(photo by Margaret Smith)

   

Prescott Elections Coming Up

The general spring elections in Prescott, WI will be held on April 7th. Voting will be open between 7:00am and 8:00pm at City Hall. Prescott City Administrator Jayne Brand goes over the ballot.

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Recap: HEDRA Meeting

The March 19th meeting of the HEDRA covered several subjects including the Hudson building site and the Confluence Development. John Hinzman, community development director comments on proposed extension on their contract.

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Asbestos abatement also needs attention and Hinzman explains the process to handle this task.

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Spring Art Sale in Afton

Blooming news from Squire House Gardens, a garden, home and gift shop located in a historic home in Afton. Their spring Art Sale will end on Sunday March 22nd, and the closing reception will be held from 3:00-5:00pm featuring art demonstrations and a chance to speak to some of the exibiting artists. For more information, call 651-436-8080 or view their online site at www.squirehousegardens.com.

Recap: Hastings Police Department Calls

The Hastings Police Department responded to several incidents last week. Hastings Police Chief Bryan Schafer goes over the calls, starting on March 14th.

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Student Support Cards at UWH

Following the release of the Helping Kids Succeed the Hastings Way handbook is a way for students, parents and educators to assess the strength of a young person's web of support. Director of Connections for Helping Kids Succeed Jane Neumiller Bustad talks about using what's known as a Student Support Card.

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