Two years ago, in October 2011, the Friends of Lake Elmo Library announced ‘Operation Bookstrap,” a project to collect donated materials for the community’s future Lake Elmo Public Library. The response was overwhelming. Thousands of books, DVDs and audiobooks poured in! One volunteer estimated that 30,000 to 50,000 books came in during the first year. The library, in its current location at 3537 Lake Elmo Ave. North, has a maximum capacity of 15,000 volumes, so the Friends of Lake Elmo Library have instituted an ongoing used book sale in the library and have been shipping many boxes of donated books Better World Books, a used-book retailer. The Friends receive a small commission from Better World on the sales.
We have the high honor in Inver Grove Heights of hosting Minnesota’s official Veterans Day Program again this year. It’s has been a great privilege for our community to host the official program more often than any other city in the state.
While we’re honoring veterans across Minnesota, we’re certainly not forgetting our local vets — both active and retired, young and old, those still with us, and those who have passed away.
Minnesota Department of Natural Resources field staff, resource managers and the DNR Information Center staff answer many questions every day about natural resources topics. Here is one of them: Q. What does the DNR do with animals that are taken illegally (poached)?
Freedom isn’t free. As former President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “Freedom has its life in the hearts, the actions, the spirit of men and so it must be daily earned and refreshed—else like a flower cut from its life-giving roots, it will wither and die.”
Sometimes we can forget the daily sacrifices being made by our military personnel and their families. Brave Americans put their lives on the line to keep our country safe and that cannot go unrecognized.
Pam O’Meara and her mother, Ruth Henkin, pose for a photo about two weeks before her mother’s death. (submitted photo)
A Winnie-the-Pooh helium balloon, Mr. Potato Head on the dining room table, two small athletic shoes lined up next to mine and pumpkins on the front porch - these are the signs my daughter Karen and 4-year-old granddaughter Katerina were just visiting from Taiwan.
The young pastor at the church I attend recently gave a sermon about “mulligans,” that is, our desire for “do-overs” when we mess up in life. A “mulligan” is a do-over in golf even though not allowed in the rules and permitted only among friends. When the player makes a very bad shot, he calls “mulligan” and is allowed to do-over that shot. When I heard the “mulligan” sermon, it brought a question to mind: are there “mulligans” in criminal court? Put another way, can the court grant forgiveness to someone who commits a crime, even a minor offense? Can the court “wipe the slate clean?”
I lured my desert-dwelling father to Minnesota last weekend with the promise of fall colors and a camping trip along the Mississippi River. “Warm weather,” I said over the phone. “It’s a little cool at night but that means no mosquitoes around the campfire.”
More and more people use the Internet to access government services and for personal business transactions. People can change mail delivery, renew license tabs, sign up for health insurance and order credit reports online. But with this accessibility there is a risk: look-alike websites that charge unnecessary fees, provide inaccurate information, or do not deliver any services at all. It can happen like this:
A couple of years ago I read the following quote from Lesley Boone on the Second Harvest Heartland website (www.2harvest.org). It is a powerful quote and a great reminder to help within our community whenever we can.
“We are a country that prides itself on power and wealth, yet there are millions of children who go hungry every day. It is our responsibility, not only as a nation, but also as individuals, to get involved.”
The county budget funds a diverse set of county services, from county roads and bridges to safety net services for elderly and disabled residents. We operate parks, libraries, administer elections, provide prosecution, protect public health and offer public safety protection to our communities. Much of what we do is required because of state and federal mandates. Not all mandates are bad, but if state and federal funding is not provided along with the mandates, the cost of providing that service is shifted to county property taxes.