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Building our Future Together Update

Mechanical Masterminds

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Easter Happenings Page 14


The Courier Vision for St. Francis Area Schools St. Francis Area Schools Communications Department St. Francis, Minnesota

Serving the communities of Andover, Athens Township, Bethel, East Bethel, Linwood Township, Nowthen, Oak Grove, St. Francis and Stanford Township



The vision for St. Francis Area Schools is to be a destination school district for students who reside within our borders. Our talented staff, educational programs and school facilities will be the showcase of our community. When challenges confront us, as they are right now, it is not unusual to lose sight of where we are going and what we are trying to accomplish. I want to acknowledge the great work that we are currently doing

and provide an outline of future plans. Our mission is to equip all students with the knowledge and skills to empower them to achieve their dreams and full potential while becoming responsible citizens in a dynamic world. How do we accomplish our mission? Outlined below are three major areas of focus for St. Francis Area Schools: 1. Education Components Our mission to equip all students with knowledge and skills means we must ensure that our curriculum and

Elizabeth Vang (center) and Charlotte Sonterre (right) talk to Brendan Vu (seated) before he gave blood. St. Francis High School students and staff participated in National Honor Society’s (NHS) blood drive on Valentine’s Day through the American Red Cross. They filled the 130 spots available to donate a pint of blood each. The American Red Cross monetarily matches each pint donated toward a scholarship awarded to NHS graduating seniors. Scholarship money is raised through blood drives and dances sponsored by NHS. The next NHS blood drive will take place May 2. KATRINNA DODGE, STAFF WRITER

instruction addresses the needs of all students. Some of the areas of focus for the future will include the following: Personalized Learning As we work toward meeting the Strategic Plan mission outcome, by 2020, all students will develop a personalized educational path they can articulate and use to progress toward their evolving dreams. We will continue to identify how each student’s educational path will be personalized in order for them to reach their highest potential. Career and Technical Education During our effort to pass the bond, we received a tremendous amount of positive feedback from our community members as well as local and state elected officials when talking about our plans to expand career and technical education (CTE) opportunities for our students. The partnerships we are creating with industry and other institutions have already enhanced the opportunities for our students. No longer are vocational paths seen as second best to traditional fouryear college career paths. Industry and service institutions are in high demand for skilled workers and they are stepping up to help build the pool that is increasingly thin in our state and across the nation. We will embrace this trend and continue to look for ways to develop our CTE programming for students choosing to enter the workforce or attend a trade school after they graduate from high school. As we look to the future, we will develop our CTE pathways. The good news in the area of CTE is that we have already started on this path. Here are just a few of the highlights of what we have been able to do for our students:

The district has invested curriculum funds for the purchase of new equipment for students to use in class. New equipment for instruction and skill training in the areas of manufacturing, construction, transportation and computer-aided design careers are already in place in our high school. Members of our local business community have donated resources. Metro Mold provided $12,000 to purchase mills and lathes and provided a $6,000 drill press. Bell Manufacturing was instrumental in material and equipment donations in excess of $50,000. We greatly appreciate these partnerships and are working to expand efforts in all areas. College-Ready We want to ensure that our students who are planning for college after high school graduation are prepared. We also want our students to have a robust high school experience, with strong academic coursework to keep them challenged and growing. There will be a continued emphasis on advanced courses such as College In School classes, Honors and Advanced Placement classes. STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) The District Standards and Building Design Teams, recently formed after the bond referendum was passed by voters last November, will focus efforts in helping create educational spaces that accommodate the needs of our students now and into the future. The teams will look at recent projects completed in the metro area and incorporate ideas for future needs and programming for our students. We want to ensure we are ready to accommodate and re-dedicate our efforts in the area of STEM and in CONTINUED ON PAGE 8

Inside Schools in Action..................................... 2 6443 Norris Lake Road Nowthen, MN 55330 763-753-213 |

Friday, March 30 Good Friday Service | 6:30-7:30 p.m. Saturday, March 31 Annual Easter Egg Hunt | 9:00-11:00 a.m. Hunts every 20 minutes.... Over 5,000 Eggs! Huge Prizes, Games and More! It’s indoors—rain or shine.

Sunday, April 1 Easter Services | 9:00 & 10:30 a.m. Kids programing available during service. New Sermon Series: Pyromaniacs Come as you are!

School Board Highlights........................ 9 Community & Business........................ 16 Community Education......................... 21 Meetings, Events & Benefits................. 24 Sports & Outdoors................................ 25 Life........................................................... 26


MARCH 2018


Schools in Action Building Our Future Together Update for March 2018 LISA RAHN


We have said it before and will continue to say it again, thank you to our community for your support in passing the bond on November 7. Since Election Day, members of the Bond Oversight Committee

Get the

have been busy. Special Education, Elementary and Media Center District Focus Teams have met three times already and are collaborating to ensure consistency in developing plans across the district. These teams will meet weekly as needed. The District Focus Teams have been touring facilities from other districts that incorporate similar design characteristics to the


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proposed changes as laid out in the bond. The goal of these tours is for team members to gain first-hand knowledge of how the design concepts being discussed function in a real school setting. The Building Design Teams have been formed for each building and have begun meeting. These teams will be guiding overall design within the building, establishing criteria and reviewing options for project development. Design teams were formed to take input from multiple stakeholders within the district and community and then make recommendations to the Bond Oversight Committee for review. Final recommendations will be made to the school board. Across the district, land

surveys will be ongoing over the course of the upcoming weeks. Further evaluation is in progress for the development of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and accessibility scope for the bleachers at the high school and field access at all applicable schools. You will also notice that St. Francis Middle School tennis courts will be reconstructed to align with Minnesota State High School League competitive regulations. The tennis court project was not part of the voter-approved bond, but rather part of the Long Term Maintenance Facilities Revenue approved in 2016. The Courier will continue to provide monthly updates on the progress as we build our future together. You will find current news and information on St.

Dreaming… Check out our website!

of a new bathroom?

Francis Area Schools’ Bond Projects 2017-2021 webpage at Once there, you can subscribe to receive news alerts regarding bond projects.

Moen smashes glider record JESSICA ROWLES


Parker Moen, St. Francis Middle School (SFMS) student, beat the SFMS glider vehicle record with his glider reaching 113 feet in Dan Remus’ engineering class. Remus reported, “Each student builds a glider vehicle that is launched down the hallway with a rubber band. The contest is to see who can make their vehicle go the farthest. The assignment is based on applied science, math, art and engineering. The previous school record was held by Hunter Munoz with a distance of 98 feet.” Way to go Parker!

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The St. Francis High School Senior All-Night Party committee is inviting Class of 2018 seniors to the Carnival. Friday, June 1 after the Commencement Ceremony The All-Night Party is a great way for seniors to celebrate their accomplishments with fellow class members. If you are a SFHS senior and would like to attend the party or a community member that would like to donate time, prizes or funds, please contact Amy Pogorelec at 763-229-6723 or Facebook @ St. Francis High School Senior All-Night Party or Twitter #SaintsANP

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MARCH 2018


Crossroads Victory Garden success allows students to play an important role in a successful effort with very real results. Last year we installed a 7,000-square-foot pollinator prairie area that will take three years to fully establish. This area will attract pollinators and educate students about their vital importance for our food supply. Last spring, we invited local dignitaries to our annual schoolwide Planting Day Celebration. Visitors were impressed with the garden and the positive, cooperative spirit that was displayed by both students and staff. The editors of Source Magazine, which is published by the University of Minnesota Extension Department, visited us. They photographed students and staff working in the garden



Just three years after it started, the Victory Garden at Crossroads School & Vocational Center has gained statewide attention. The garden was planned and designed to engage students in a variety of learning activities. It has been quite successful in involving young learners in a number of new ways as an outdoor classroom. The garden is funded through individual and community donations, and we are very grateful for their support. We have teamed up with an amazing group of Master Gardeners who have volunteered time and energy to enhance the learning of our students. Many of our teachers have taken advantage of the opportunities created by this project. For example, math comes alive as students can incorporate the use of reallife materials. It provides a living laboratory in order for science students to practice the scientific method and conduct experiments. Special education students utilize the garden as a sensory tool. When in the garden, our students are inspired, activated and eager to work. Thanks to our association with the University of Minnesota, our students have been actively engaged in cooking activities using our garden produce. During these exercises, the students receive guidance from nutrition educators. Lifelong lessons are passed on, such as working together, appreciating


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and published an article that featured our Victory Garden. Our photo appeared on the cover of the magazine! (See photo on this page.) They also created a video that is being shown statewide as a model of a successful Schoolyard Garden Project. On March 2, the Victory Garden team will be presenting at the statewide Schoolyard Garden Conference at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. The Victory Garden project aligns with the mission of St. Francis Area Schools, which is to equip all students with the knowledge and skills to empower them to achieve their dreams and full potential while becoming responsible citizens in a dynamic world.


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MARCH 2018


SFHS drumline performed at Super Bowl LIVE

Cedar Creek Community School (CCCS) students turned 100 days smarter on February 8. CCCS classes celebrated 100 days of school by creating a collection of 100 things, such as special art projects, treats or having fun math lessons. Pictured are kindergarten teacher Bethany Rice with Tanner Emmans and their 100-eyed shirts.



The St. Francis High School drumline performed at Super Bowl LIVE on January 27 and January 30. The group was recruited by National Football League special events staff to perform for fans along Nicollet Mall as football fans and entertainers from around the world gathered in downtown Minneapolis. “It was such a cool experience,” said senior


drumline member Autumn Doerr. “Being around all the excitement in the city and performing with my friends was something I’ll remember



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for a long time.” The St. Francis High School drumline consists of 30 students and is directed by David Palermo.



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MARCH 2018


Mechanical Masterminds reflect before first competition KATRINNA DODGE


At St. Francis High School (SFHS) students and mentors from Mechanical Masterminds, SFHS’ FIRST robotics club and Teens ‘Nto Technology (TNT), Isanti 4-H FIRST robotics team, worked diligently on February 20 to make final touches on their robots. The camaraderie in the room was buzzing between the two teams as they finished their robots before the six-week building period stopped at 10:59 p.m. “There are so many people that I have met from freshmen to seniors,” stated Sarah Provost, Mechanical Masterminds team member. “We wouldn’t have interacted as much as we had without robotics. It’s been really fun to get to know people I never would have thought I would talk to. It’s fun to broaden your horizons.” A variety of relationships have assisted the eighteen students and their mentors through Mechanical Masterminds’ first year. Support from TNT and other local robotics teams have been helpful in sharing parts and advice. Financial support from partners and sponsors went toward purchasing parts, T-shirts and more. Sponsors include St. Francis Area Schools, Northland Screw Products, Inc., Delta ModTech, Medtronic, Mechatronic Solutions and St. Francis Area Chamber of Commerce. Mechanical Masterminds’ support from local organizations and businesses

provides opportunities for students to explore their niche and skills set, which can lead to future career decisions. Todd Kruse, Mechanical Masterminds mentor, commented on how FIRST Robotics has strict rules—such as function standards, timelines, size and weight limitations— and competition requirements that relate to real-world jobs. “[Students] learn the full process of machine building that I do at work,” stated Kruse, Delta ModTech electrical engineer. “From using materials to making sure the robot functions for a specific test desired by the customer.” “It is really interesting seeing science coming from a classroom standpoint to real-life applications,” observed Jake Buchanan, Mechanical Masterminds team member. “When you go into the workforce, you don’t just do science equations and memorize terms. You actually put in the work to build your idea.” “It was really good to see the advancement from design to making the robot in six weeks,” added Buchanan. “You see a process you wouldn’t get in a classroom.” Students have to work in teams to complete the requirements to compete: essay, robot completion, photo of when the robot was completed, community partnerships and talking points for competition day. “In a short period of time, [the students] have to get quite a bit

Montana Frederiksen (left) and Kyle Enfield (right) pose with Mechanical Masterminds’ robot 7068, commonly referred to as Patricia.


accomplished,” commented Joe Bruhjell, Mechanical Masterminds mentor and St. Francis Middle School industrial technology teacher. “They have to be committed to getting it finished as well. So it’s fun so see that progression and growth as well.” Mechanical Masterminds plans to continue building a sustainable program for years to come. This includes creating a booster club and accruing sponsorship and alumni support. If you or your

business is interested in becoming a sponsor, contact Char Provost at char. Students, staff, parents and community supporters celebrated a productive building period on February 20 with some speeches and pep talks from mentors Joe Bruhjell, Char Provost and Todd Kruse. The group was excited to package their robot before their competition in March. This process is referred to as Bag and Tag, marking the end of the robot building period. “We have done a lot of work in a short amount of time,” smiled Bruhjell. “I’m really proud of these students.” “I am really proud of the efforts of our students in their first year of robotics,” commented Jeff Fink, SFHS activities director. “The learning curve for a first year is tremendous and we have worked through many of the difficulties of a Year 1 program. I appreciate the school board and administration being willing to back this much needed academic, real-life program.” Mechanical Masterminds will be competing at the Medtronic Foundation Regional March 28-31 against 50 FIRST Robotics teams on the University of Minnesota campus. The community will have a chance to see the Mechanical Masterminds and their robot at St. Francis Pioneer Days June 8-10. Visit roboticssfhs for future events and competitions.

St. Francis High School All-Night Party update JILL ANDERSON


Are you a St. Francis High School (SFHS) senior? Do you have a senior in your household? Would you like to donate prizes, money or your time to the St. Francis High School Senior AllNight Party? On June 1, after graduation ceremonies, the Class of 2018 have the opportunity to spend a great evening with classmates at the All-Night Party, a long-standing tradition at SFHS. The 2018 All-Night Party will be held at St. Francis Middle School and the theme is a carnival. Some of the fun will include sumo wrestling, money machine cash cube, casino, hypnotist, life size hamster balls, photo booth, DJ and much, much more! There will be lots of food and beverages including Mansetti’s pizza, chips and cheese, and cotton candy. Now that you know some of what you will be able to do and eat, what can you win? There are many different prizes, from gift cards to cash, including 32-inch smart TVs, Apple watch, Keurig coffee makers, Beats wireless headphones and $500 scholarships. One of the All-Night Party’s major donors is the St. Francis Lions Club. Each year the organization donates four scholarships to be given away only to attendees. The Lions also donate their time to run the casino area at the event. Information

and registration forms were mailed to all SFHS seniors. If anyone would like to donate prizes, money or volunteer their time, please reach out to Amy Pogorelec at 763-2296723 or Find us on Facebook @ st francis high school senior all-night party or on Twitter are #SaintsANP.

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MARCH 2018


St. Francis Elementary School Valentine’s Day MERI HUMPHREY


St. Francis Elementary School has a February tradition in music. At the end of January, all first-graders learn a simple song about creating a Valentine for someone special. The song describes the careful calculation and decorating of this Valentine. During our music special, the students create their own heart-shaped message for their teacher. Students promise not to tell their teacher they are creating a Valentine for them and practice keeping this secret. It is fun watching the students anticipate giving this gift to their teacher. In the end, we sing the Valentine song to first-grade teachers and present the group Valentines. (See photo at right.) This lesson not only works on singing skills but encourages keeping a promise, writing skills, performing skills, appreciation and overall creativity.

Courier Contacts Main Phone����������������������������763-753-7031 Advertising�����������������������������763-753-7032 Billing������������������������������������������763-213-1588 Fax�������������������������������������������������763-753-4693 Email������������������������������������� Website�������������������� Like us on Facebook Address 4115 Ambassador Boulevard NW St. Francis, MN 55070-9368 Publisher Lisa Rahn�����������������������������������763-753-7048 Editor Kathleen Miller����������������������763-753-7042 Production Binie Bertils Katrinna Dodge��������������������763-753-7033 Pat Johnson�����������������������������763-753-7025 Advertising Representative Sarah Yannarelly��������������������763-753-7032 Billing Amy Lindfors��������������������������763-213-1588 Deadline Information Deadline for the April issue of The Courier is March 9. Delivery For delivery inquiries, call 763-753-7031.


St. Francis High Saints Academy partners with middle school School Theatre MATT ANDERSON ACADEMY & SAINTS takes fourth place SAINTS ONLINE COMMUNITY RELATIONS GLENN MOREHOUSE OLSON




A Spoon River Anthology placed 4th at finals in the 7AA Section competition for One Acts at Elk River High School. A number of students received awards: ■ All Conference Honorable Mention Tech: Jacey Vincent, Hannah Dziuk ■ All Conference Honorable Mention Acting: Kami Ferguson, Austin Adler, Roenin Iverson ■ All Conference Award Tech: Grace McCabe ■ All Conference Acting Award: Emma DeRoo-Arndt, Ruby Schroeder, Elizabeth Vang Austin Adler, Simon Luckow and Brianna Waste, St. Francis High School students, performed in the Minnesota All State Show, Almost, Maine at Edina High School on February 18.


In January, Saints Academy students partnered with Team Notre Dame from St. Francis Middle School (SFMS) for agriculture, building and construction classes. This partnership provides much hands-on activities and experiences for SFMS students. Saints Academy and middle school students worked together on projects that will be at the Saints Academy spring sale in May. “This is a great experience for our Saints Academy students to give back to the younger students in our St. Francis Area Schools,” stated Scott Manni, Saints Academy principal. “This partnership has helped the older students gain mastery of valuable life skills, such as communication and patience.”

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Letter to the Editor For the complete Letter to the Editor policy, visit Policies and Pricing Visit for policy and pricing information. News Submission Send news and photos/captions to Subscriptions The publication is delivered at no charge to all St. Francis Area Schools residents. The Courier can be mailed to any address for an annual (11 issues) subscription rate of $18. The Courier is a publication prepared and distributed by St. Francis Area Schools Community Education and paid for with revenues generated by advertising sales.

A Saints Academy student helps a middle school student learn about tool safety. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Beach blankets and bingo JAMIE STUDNICKA


On a cold January night East Bethel Community School (EBCS) thinks of summer with their annual Beach Blanket and Basket Bingo Night. This family event was held January 19 in the EBCS gym with over 200 people participating. Families were invited to come to school and spread out their beach blankets to play bingo. This free event was made possible by the tireless efforts of the EBCS Parent Teacher Organization and staff. While families played bingo for a chance to win fabulous prizes, there was a silent auction to help raise money for school events that benefit students. Donated auction items included baskets with sports equipment, movie nights, sports memorabilia and evenings out at local businesses.

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East Bethel Community School families enjoying Beach Blanket Bingo Night. PHOTO BY JAMIE STUDNICKA


MARCH 2018


St. Francis Area Schools reintroduces agricultural programs COLLIN MINSHULL


Even two years ago, the fact that National Ag (Agriculture) Day is on March 20 would have been lost on most St. Francis Area Schools teachers and administrators. Now in 2018, however, new developments in the district have begun to change its perspective on and value of agriculture and education. St. Francis Area Schools covers roughly 165 square miles in northern, rural Anoka County. The nine municipalities that comprise the school district have an agricultural heritage extending back to the lumber boom in the mid-1800s, with the city of St. Francis nestled along the Rum River the hub of lumber milling and shipping. By the 1880s with the best native white pine forests logged, the land left behind was relatively cleared for farming. The poor soil quality made highly productive and profitable farming difficult, but the availability of inexpensive land and access to the Rum River for grain and timber milling encouraged farmers to press on with their livelihood. In the 1930s, the expansion and development of modern transportation came to Minnesota and the St. Francis milling services ultimately relocated to Minneapolis. With primarily fine sand left to cultivate, which the USDA classifies as “not prime farmland,” many St. Francis area farmers were challenged to maintain profitable farms. The area farming population remained largely due to the high availability and low cost of land; however, the lower farm profitability, expanded housing needs and increasing global agriculture competition has caused the number of farms across the St. Francis area to steadily decline since the 1940 Census for Agriculture. Agriculture is still a significant and growing economic sector of Anoka County and the St. Francis Area Schools district, generating more than $47 million in crop and livestock sales in 2012, up from $32 million in 2007. Today, agricultural production and processing in Minnesota accounts for

(L-R) State Future Farmers of America (FFA) President Katie Benson, agriculture teacher Emily Trout; and St. Francis FFA students pose after an FFA Forestry Competition at the University of Minnesota last fall. SUBMITTED PHOTO

$57.5 billion in sales and more than 147,000 jobs and ranks fifth in the United States in total agricultural production, according to the Minnesota Department of Agriculture. However, over the past 25 years, along with the economic growth of agriculture, there has been a simultaneous deterioration in the school district’s support for agriculture preparation and education, with 2016 marking 38 years since St. Francis High School last officially sponsored a student agriculture organization. It is this continuing growth in agricultural revenue and sales and the fact that agriculture

is one of Minnesota’s largest economic sectors that has prompted the school district to embrace its agricultural heritage and pursue a long-term commitment to agriculture literacy, education and opportunity for students and residents. Last spring Saints Academy principal, Scott Manni, paired his vision for handson learning opportunities for his students with this new interest in agriculture and hired a full-time agriculture teacher. Through approval from the Minnesota Department of Education, the new agriculture teacher, Emily Trout, began preparing

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to teach Minnesota science standards for chemistry, life science and biology in the context of her agriculture classes. Trout is currently teaching the science standards to 87 students in Horticulture 1 & 2, Agricultural Science 1 & 2 and Wildlife and Natural Resources. Additionally, Trout took over the Crossroads School & Vocational Center greenhouse operation for expanded classroom experiences, weekly mentorship and learning opportunities for middle school students and wider selections for the annual plant sale. One of the first things Trout did, outside of developing the curriculum for her classes, was to re-establish a local chapter of Future Farmers of America (FFA), which last existed in St. Francis Area Schools in 1979. To date, Trout has ten students who have already competed in various FFA competitions. At the state FFA convention in March, the St. Francis FFA chapter will receive its official charter from the national FFA organization. To help steer and align the long-range planning

and development of district agriculture literacy programming that would occur in other sites besides Saints Academy, the school district established a 10-person advisory group comprised of community residents, teachers and administrators. The AGvisory group is an entity that is an intentional district/ community collaboration that is working to establish a mission for agriculture literacy that supports the values and interests of district communities and the district’s mission. Its two primary goals are to have agriculture literacy and hands-on experiences interwoven with existing instruction from early childhood through high school and to offer students in the middle and high schools expanded opportunities for training, mentorship, leadership, education and career exploration in agriculture. If you would like more information on FFA, the AGvisory group or the efforts to develop agriculture literacy in district classrooms, contact Troy Ferguson, Scott Manni or Emily Trout.

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3128 Bridge Street NW | St. Francis





MARCH 2018


Vision the future broaden to STEAM (Arts added). Alternative Learning Options Broadening academic choices for our students while maintaining fiscal responsibility will always be a challenge. One strategy is to continue to use our Saints Online School as a supplement to course offerings for our secondary students and as an enrichment opportunity for our elementary students. This provides our students the opportunities to expand their education by taking unique online classes beyond our boundaries while remaining in our schools. Saints Academy, another alternative learning program, offers students an option to complete their high school education other than the traditional path. This program is only halfway through its third year but is already recognized as an important option for many of our students. Saints Online and Saints Academy provide students the opportunity for individualized learning paths, which is identified as a mission outcome in the district’s Strategic Plan. We will continue to develop systems for streamlining the processes of students participating in multiple schools within our district. Gifted/Talented Programming The decision was made this school year to specifically identify resources for the development of gifted and talented programming for students in our school district. The groundwork for addressing


student needs in this area is underway with plans to continue. Read Well by Third Grade The Minnesota Department of Education’s (MDE) World’s Best Workforce outlines that every student must be a proficient reader by third grade. In order to accomplish this, the district needs to focus on all aspects of our educational processes, which impacts this goal. We need evidence-based practices implemented with fidelity in every classroom. We need to ensure that our teachers have the proper training and support to effectively teach every student. We need to continue to develop our processes and procedures to identify students who are struggling with specific skills. We need to continue to develop and support our intervention systems and staff to ensure that all students will get the specific interventions they need to be successful. All Students Ready for Kindergarten For our youngest students, it is critically important that we continue to allocate resources to ensure they are socially and academically prepared by the time they start kindergarten. At the state level, Minnesota Department of Education continues to support and promote preschool as a cornerstone of education. We have an outstanding preschool program in our district that does great work in preparing our students both academically and socially. We will continue to support and expand our

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outreach to the community regarding this resource for their children. All Students Graduate Our graduation rate in St. Francis Area Schools remains a point of pride for our students and staff. We have consistently had graduation percentage rates in the mid 90s. Our teachers and administrators strive every year to continue to increase this already high bar. Equity and Cultural Awareness Achievement Gap The demographics of St. Francis Area Schools are changing. Our minority populations have been consistently increasing and we need to work together to understand and embrace the many cultures within our community. There remains an achievement gap between white students and our other student groups. Our staff cares deeply about all students. We need to better understand cultural differences and develop programming, strategies and training that will help close these gaps. The equity issues run deeper than academic achievement. 2. Financial Responsibility and Efficiency Our current financial situation is a result of many factors. The major component is declining enrollment in our schools. The trend over the past decade has been that the graduating class has more students leaving than incoming kindergartners. This trend has the district on a path to be a 4,000 student district instead of a 5,000 student district. We need to ‘right size’ to adjust to this reality. Right sizing addresses not only staffing but buildings and programs as well. In addition to the anticipated declining enrollment, the district had an unexpected drop of 173 students during the 2016-17 school year. This drop in student enrollment occurred after the entire staffing and budgeting process was complete. Other financial pressures on the district include increased expenses due to inflation, projected reductions in federal funding (eg. Title, special education), limited increases in state funding not keeping pace with inflation, uncertainty of third party billing and acknowledging a budgeting error on a major purchase last year are all factors contributing to our current situation. Moving forward, we have

adopted a financial planning process which will allow us to more accurately plan and react to student enrollment and funding challenges. This right-sizing approach takes into account many components including declining enrollment, birth rate, the growing number of educational options, local, state and federal funding, inflation and more. We are also implementing a plan to personally contact families of all students who open enroll outside our district to more clearly understand why they have left. In the near future, we will need to ask the community to support an operating levy. The approval of the building bond only addressed physical needs of our facilities. State and federal funding sources do not fully meet the financial needs of a school district. Local operating levies are an integral part of school budgets. 3. Passing the Bond to Upgrade our Facilities The successful bond referendum was a major accomplishment for the district and a fundamental step in our journey to achieve our mission. All of our educational spaces need to be repaired, updated and redesigned to

meet the academic needs for our students. We want facilities that our students, parents and community members have access to and are proud to call home. We want educational spaces that provide our students with the best opportunities to succeed. The Building Design Teams, consisting of staff and community members from across the district, have already started their work. The teams are providing the educational space configuration ideas along with wants and needs to the architects. This is only the first step in what will likely be a three-year process to achieve the accomplishment of school facilities that are functional, accessible and beautiful. Summary The challenges we are facing today bring uncertainty and apprehension. As we address our immediate issues and take corrective actions, it is imperative we continue to focus on the vision of the district and align with our mission to provide our students the very best educational opportunities. The work we do moving forward will identify and solidify our brand to make St. Francis Area Schools the school district of choice.

Classes win trophies of respect KARA LOFGREN


As part of Cedar Creek Community School’s (CCCS) Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) initiative, students are asked to be respectful, be responsible and be safe. For the month of January, classes earned a trophy of respect. The students are working together as a class to model the school expectations in the cafeteria. They are asked to use manners, follow directions, use positive language, clean up their area by throwing trash away, stay seated until dismissed, and walk in and out of the cafeteria. At the end of the week top classrooms can earn a book for their classroom library. Thank you to the students and cafeteria staff for making CCCS’s cafeteria a wonderful place to have lunch! Guest are welcome to join students for lunch. If you are unsure of your child’s lunch time, please contact your child’s teacher. SUBMITTED PHOTO


MARCH 2018


School Board Highlights School Board Highlights KATRINNA DODGE


January 22, 2018 Marsha Van Denburgh absent 2018-19 General Fund Budget report Bernice Humnick, director of Business Services, reported on the 2018-19 general fund budget assumptions and impact report to the school board of St. Francis Area Schools. Humnick presented on declining enrollment, balance recap, financial budget versus actuals, current balance recap and future budget planning. She overviewed factors that have

contributed to a $3.7 million deficit for the 2018-19 school year. Factors included declining student enrollment, increased expenses due to inflation, projected reductions in federal funding and limited increases in state funding. St. Francis Area Schools administration recommended to move forward with rightsizing the budget and develop a plan to increase the fund balance. Right-sizing is aligning expenses and revenues by evaluating enrollment trends and projections. A public Financial Forum was held January 29 that went over right-sizing, contributing factors and 2018-19 financial projections. To view the


When we learn that our school district is $3.7 million in debt, building our future could seem too big to tackle unless we remember our history and Strategic Plan. St. Francis Area Schools has a blueprint to follow. Former and current leaders had the foresight three years ago to call together stakeholders and do the hard work of creating a plan taking us forward in good times and bad. A review of our plan identifies an inclusive process, where we build on our successes and strengths, while opening ourselves to new opportunities. Strategic Plan foundational principles: ■ Gather facts and data ■ Timely, planned communication with all stakeholders ■ Feedback from stakeholders ■ Plan for equity with regards to culture, ethnicity and diversity ■ Continued solution oriented communications which recognizes a past that includes successes and failures, but does not confine us These building blocks will give us opportunities to re-evaluate programming, gather information and realize our potential. As we continue forward, district and community leaders need to evaluate how we align to these guidelines. Learn more about St. Francis Area Schools Strategic Plan at strategicplan.

School Board Members

School Board Meeting Schedule

Mike Starr Chairman 


Jill Anderson Vice-Chairwoman


School board meetings are held in the Community Room at Central Services Center, located at 4115 Ambassador Blvd. NW, St. Francis. Monday, March 12 & 26 Dialogue with School Board 6:30 p.m. Regular Meeting 7:00 p.m. Monday, April 9 & 23 Dialogue with School Board 6:30 p.m. Regular Meeting 7:00 p.m. Monday, May 14 Dialogue with School Board 6:30 p.m. Regular Meeting 7:00 p.m.

Sean Sullivan Clerk763-807-0010 Rob Schoenrock Treasurer763-232-7902 Barbara Jahnke Director763-753-6846 Amy Kelly Director763-744-8458 Marsha Van Denburgh Director  763-753-6653 Email:

Live streaming and video archives of school board meetings are available at

presentation and to learn more about public school financing, visit businessservices.

School Board Highlights KATRINNA DODGE


February 12, 2018 Barb Jahnke absent Weighted Grades Report Samantha Schmidt and Jill Salo, St. Francis High School counselors, updated the school

board of a new high school practice to weight grades. Classes affected by weighted grades would be Advanced Placement classes and 200-300 college-level courses through Post-Secondary Enrollment Options and College in the Schools options. St. Francis High School student report Ellie Tibodeau-Lissick, St. Francis High School (SFHS) student representative, updated the school board on the success of the Snow Week Pep Fest and the SFHS drumline

participation at Super Bowl LIVE. She also highlighted the school board on upcoming February events, including the National Honor Society blood drive on Valentine’s Day and Top Secret Project on February 22, an exhibit and presentation on drug awareness for parents sponsored by Anoka County. Tibodeau-Lissick informed the school board that students are concerned how rightsizing will affect staff at the high school. Superintendent Troy Ferguson stated he would answer her inquiry via email.

St. Francis Middle School Site Report BETH LACOURSIERE


There are a lot of exciting things going on at St. Francis Middle School (SFMS) this year for students in grades six through eighth. Our goals are focused on student achievement, attendance and behavioral data trending in a positive direction. We have a strong focus on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) and our schedule allows for professional collaboration. Goals set by staff include using the Multi-Tiered System of Support, utilizing high yield instructional strategies and increasing reading scores. The Multi-Tiered System of Support (MTSS) is used to determine which students are in need of academic or behavioral interventions. A team approach to collect and analyze data and develop/ implement interventions is being used. Special emphasis is being placed on the transitions from elementary school to middle school to high school to ensure students continue to receive the support needed to be successful at each level. Middle and elementary staff meet to review interventions that are working for fifthgraders and incorporate them into plans when those students enter middle school. Information from eighth-grade interventions are shared with high school staff to ensure smooth transitions for each student. SFMS staff is utilizing high yield strategies and determining changes to instructional practice to increase student learning. Staff has studied the eight mind frames that lead to major impacts on student achievement. Plans to increase student achievement in reading include working on motivating students to read and developing a love of reading. Students read for fifteen minutes each day in language arts class. During this time, teachers are conferencing with students, one-on-one, about what they are reading. Reading skills of students improve by reading more books they enjoy at their personal reading level. Math teachers are piloting new curriculum materials and will be determining a program that best meets the needs of our students. Science teachers are using interventions for students who demonstrate a need for remediation and providing extension activities for students to fully grasp concepts presented in class. The average daily student attendance rate is 95 percent. Restorative practice has been the focus with behavioral issues. Ninety-three percent of

our students have zero to one discipline referrals, six percent have two to five discipline referrals and one percent of students have six or more discipline referrals for the year. Students with six or more discipline referrals have plans in place to increase positive behavior. Our vision for technology (part of STEM) is to create skillful problem-solvers and utilize inclusive technology that supports all students. We want to increase exposure to different levels and forms of technology from classroom use to possible future careers and offer amazing real-world opportunities. Students are exposed to a variety of technology applications in engineering technology classes. In sixth-grade, students learn about transportation technology, mechanical engineering, robotics, computer engineering and simple machines. In seventhgrade, they learn about bio and wood technology, packaging, bridge structural projects, CO2 cars and transportation technology. Eighth-graders learn about earthquake resistant structures, construction technology, manufacturing technology, 3D modeling and problem-solving, self-designed technology development and 3D printing or machining. The middle school uses a researched-based schedule, which fits well in the response to intervention and professional learning communities. The schedule allows for professional development and collaboration between teams of teachers. There is time in the schedule for teachers to meet to discuss specific needs of students in need of intervention and time for students to get help from teachers during the school day during focused learning time. We are working on including extension activities as well during focused learning time. The Parent/Teacher Organization (PTO) is new at the middle school this school year. The PTO is a wonderful group of dedicated parents and staff who work together to provide resources for field trips, staff meals for conferences, motivational and uplifting messages for staff and fun activities for students. The entire staff at St. Francis Middle School is committed to providing a positive learning environment to meet the individual needs of our students. Our work is aligned with the district mission of equipping all students with the knowledge and skills to empower them to achieve their dreams and full potential while becoming responsible citizens in a dynamic world.


MARCH 2018


Income Tax Tips Track Tax Refunds online at

Financial Focus


What should you do with your tax refund? You may not get much of a thrill from filing your taxes, but the process becomes much more enjoyable if you’re expecting a refund. So if one is headed your way, what should you do with the money? The answer depends somewhat on the size of the refund. For the 2017 tax year, the average refund was about $2,760, not a fortune, but big enough to make an impact in your life. Suppose, for example, that you invested this amount in a tax-deferred vehicle, such as a traditional IRA, and then did not add another penny to it for 30 years. At the end of that time, assuming a hypothetical seven percent annual rate of return, you’d have slightly more than $21,000. Not enough by itself to allow you to move to a Caribbean island, but still a nice addition to your retirement income. (You will need to pay taxes on your withdrawals eventually, unless the money was invested in a Roth IRA, in which case withdrawals are tax-free, provided you meet certain conditions.) Of course, you don’t have to wait 30 years before you see any benefits from your tax refund. If you did decide to put a $2,760 tax refund toward your IRA for 2018, you’d already have reached just over half the allowable contribution limit of $5,500. (If you’re 50 or older, the limit is $6,500.) By getting such a strong head start on funding your IRA for the year, you’ll give your money more time to grow. Also, if you’re going to “max out” on your IRA, your large initial payment will enable you to put in smaller monthly amounts than you might need to contribute otherwise. While using your refund to help fund your IRA is a good move, it’s not the only one you can make. Here are a few other possibilities:

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The University of Minnesota Extension, Anoka County will present a free Dollars into Sense class on March 8, 6:00-7:30 p.m.; April 12, 10:00-11:30 a.m.; May 10, 6:00-7:30 p.m.; and April 12, 10:00-11:30 a.m. at Anoka County Human Services Center at 1201 89th Avenue, Blaine. The class covers tracking expenses, putting together a spending plan, goal setting, credit and where to get additional help/resources. To register, call University of Minnesota Extension, Anoka County at 763-324-3495 at least three days prior to the class.


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Pay down some debt At some time or another, most of us probably feel we’re carrying too much debt. If you can use your tax refund to help reduce your monthly debt payments, you’ll improve your cash flow and possibly have more money available to invest for the future. Build an emergency fund If you needed a new furnace or major car repair, or faced any other large, unexpected expense, how would you pay for it? If you did not have the cash readily available, you might be forced to dip into your long-term investments. To help avoid this problem, you could create an emergency fund containing three to six months’ worth of living expenses, with the money kept in a liquid, low-risk account. Your tax refund could help build your emergency fund. Look for other investment opportunities If you have some gaps in your portfolio, or some opportunities to improve your overall diversification, you might want to use your tax refund to add some new investments. The more diversified your portfolio, the stronger your defense against market volatility that might primarily affect one particular asset class. However, diversification, by itself, can’t protect against all losses or guarantee profits. Clearly, a tax refund gives you a chance to improve your overall financial picture. So take your time, evaluate your options and use the money wisely. This article was written by Edward Jones for use by your local Edward Jones Financial Advisor.

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With millions of tax refunds being processed, the Internal Revenue Service reminds taxpayers they can get fast answers about their refund by using the Where’s My Refund? tool available on and through the IRS2Go app. More than 70 percent of taxpayers will receive a refund this year. The Internal Revenue Service issues nine out of ten refunds in less than 21 days, and the fastest way to get a refund is to use IRS e-file and direct deposit. IRS telephone assistors can only research a refund’s status if it has been 21 days or more since the taxpayer filed electronically, six weeks since they mailed a paper return or if Where’s My Refund? directs a taxpayer to call. Taxpayers can avoid the rush by using the Where’s My Refund? tool. All that is needed is the taxpayer’s Social Security number, tax filing status (single, married, head of household) and exact amount of the tax refund claimed on the return. Alternatively, taxpayers may call 800-8291954 for the same information. Within 24 hours of filing a return electronically, the tool can tell taxpayers that their returns have been received. That time extends to four weeks if a paper return is mailed to the IRS, which is another reason to use IRS e-file and direct deposit. Once the tax return is processed, Where’s My Refund? will tell a taxpayer when their refund is approved and provide a date when they can expect to receive it. Where’s My Refund? is updated once daily, usually overnight, so checking it more often will not produce a different result. Source:

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MARCH 2018


Spring Home Improvement Business Spotlight


Plow World Power Equipment It is all about the relationships you build. Whether that be unassumingly donating to local causes, friendships or running a small business, relationships are what drive success. In East Bethel, you can find Dawn and Chris Daniels, owners of PC Outdoor Services and Plow World Power Equipment, who live that model for success. For the past 19 years, they have grown two businesses and raised a family. The Daniels’ children and Chris are alumni of St. Francis High School. Plow World was founded in 2003 to provide winter income for employees. The business has grown from a simple snow plow service repair shop with 3-4 employees to a destination for quality products and services with 10-20 employees. The Daniels’ also own PC Outdoor Services, previously P&C Outdoor Services, that was established in 1999. PC Outdoor Services was originally started as a side business to help the Daniels’ purchase their first home. Today we are focusing on Plow World, where you can find outdoor maintenance merchandise and equipment. On snowy nights you can find Chris Daniels at the shop, helping with repairs to snow plows and snow blowers. “Plow World is your local power products, sales and service shop,” described Chris Daniels, owner.

Products include commercial and residential lawn mowers, tractor ends, snowblowers, chainsaws, backpack blowers, generators and grills. “Our presence and building are completely different than any other power equipment dealer,” stated Daniels. “We strive on great customer service and fast turnaround time with repairs to deliver the best product possible.” Their quality products, inviting atmosphere and personal customer service are the reasons behind Plow World’s continued success. The majority of their customer base is return clients or by personal recommendations. “It’s the little things we do, such as delivering the product to our customers with a full tank of gas. If a

Dan, one of the Plow World mechanics, works on fixing a snow blower. PHOTO BY KATRINNA DODGE

customer has equipment issues, we go pick it up, fix it, then bring it back to them.” With an array of outdoor maintenance equipment, generators, backyard grills, chainsaws and other home tools, Plow World has become a one-stop shop. Carrying brands such as Sno-Way, Simplicity and Ferris, Plow World has developed a relationship to service every make and model. Their on-site skilled mechanics help maintain the life of your power equipment or recreational toys, such ATVs, boats and UTVs. “You can sell about anything you want to sell,” stated Daniels. He expressed how a good relationship between a manufacturer and a company benefits the customer most. This is because of Plow World’s staff have the education necessary to make an accurate decision in regarding a warranty, for example. “The products we sell are because we are heartfelt about them,” explained Daniels. “It is not just a numbers game for us. It’s about selling something that we believe in.” Visit Plow World Power Equipment at trade shows in the next month for special show pricing. On Saturday, March 10, they will be participating at the North Suburban Home Improvement Show, 8:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m. at the Andover YMCA Community Center. Plow World is also attending the two-weekend Minneapolis Home & Garden Show at the Minneapolis Convention Center March 30-31, April 1 and April 6-8. Special trade show pricing will be honored at Plow World’s store location during the month of March.

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MARCH 2018


Use renovations to create healthier homes Home renovation projects are done for several different reasons, whether to update styles, repair damaged or broken items or to achieve more living space. More than ever before, homeowners are choosing improvement projects geared toward making their homes healthier. Establishing a healthy home means different things to different people. For example, to an environmentalist, a healthy home may incorporate eco-friendly or green products. To those with young children or mobility-impaired seniors, a healthy home may be one free from potential hazards. Others may view a healthy home as one that alleviates allergies. The World Health Organizations says inadequate housing conditions, such as poor ventilation, radon, urban pollution, and moisture issues, can contribute to many preventable diseases and injuries — especially respiratory problems, nervous system disorders, cardiovascular diseases, and cancer. Furthermore, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency ranks indoor air quality as a top five environmental risk to public health. EPA studies have found that indoor air pollution levels were roughly two to five times greater than outdoor pollution levels. People interested in making their homes healthier can embrace these renovations and lifestyle changes. Be aware of furniture materials Toxic PBDEs, which are chemicals used as flame retardants on furniture fabrics produced prior to 2006, can send toxins into the air. Some manufacturers may still use these flame retardants in new

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forms, but with similar risks. Before purchasing furniture, ask if a product is treated, and select naturally fire-resistant materials like wool and cotton. Lighten up Lighting is often underappreciated but can have a dramatic impact on whether a home feels inviting, warm and/ or uplifting. Experiment with different types of bulbs and lighting fixtures to turn drab and dreary environments into brighter places. Lighting may improve mood and productivity. Let the sun shine in Modify window treatments to let more sunlight into the house. There is evidence that the sun, particularly UV light, is a potent bactericide. The Sunlight Institute advises that there’s no harm in letting natural sunlight do its work, as bacteria within eight feet of lowFILE PHOTO intensity UV light can be killed in 10 minutes. Inspect and service wood-burning appliances A study published in the American Journal of Respiratory Cell and Molecular Biology has found regular inhalation of wood smoke limits immune activity and function, and anyone who burns wood indoors should be aware of these potential health risks. Ensuring proper ventilation of smoke and routinely cleaning the chimney can help cut down on particulate matter. Turn to nontoxic cleaning products, pesticides and insecticides Always opt for nontoxic, natural products when cleaning in and around the house. Declutter your home A cluttered, hectic space can affect emotions and mental state, never mind attracting dust and making a home harder to clean. Spending time in spaces that do not elicit stressful feelings is healthier and can help residents to rest and recharge. Source: Metro Creative Graphics Editorial



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Homeowner education for septic systems JULIE BLOMQUIST


Are you a homeowner? Do you have a septic system? Are you interested in saving money? Would you like to protect your family’s environment and the natural environment? Homeowners wanting to better understand, operate and maintain their septic systems will want to attend a Homeowner Education for Septic Systems program being presented by the University of Minnesota Extension, Anoka County. You will learn how to keep your septic system operating properly—when to pump, how to protect it from freezing and more. This two-hour program will be held Monday, March 12, 7:009:00 p.m. at the Bunker Hills Activities Center, 550 Bunker Lake Boulevard NW, Andover. The cost to attend is $10. You will receive the University of Minnesota Extension Septic System Owner’s Guide at the class. Preregistration is required. You can get the flyer and registration form online at If you have any questions or to request the flyer and registration form, call the University of Minnesota Extension, Anoka County at 763-324-3495. Presentation of this program is partially covered by an Anoka County Ag Preserves Grant and is presented by Valerie Prax, Retired Extension Educator.

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MARCH 2018


Steps to a more organized, functional garage Organization can help homeowners transform their homes into less cramped, more spacious oases without forcing them to finance potentially expensive expansion projects. Homeowners who park in their driveways may find that their garages have become crowded, cluttered spaces in which searching for tools can feel like scouring a haystack in search of a needle. Organizing a garage can create extra room in a home while affording homeowners the chance to protect their vehicles from the elements. Homeowners who want to turn their garages into something more than cluttered storage units can employ the following strategies to transform these largely overlooked areas into more valuable spaces. Choose the right day Garages tend to be separate from the rest of the homes they’re a part of, meaning the only way to organize a garage is to first remove all items from the garage and into the driveway. Because items removed from the garage will be exposed to the elements, homeowners should choose a day that’s temperate and sunny to clean their garages. If possible, homeowners should opt to organize their garages in late spring, summer or early fall when there are additional hours of daylight. This protects homeowners from having to work in the dark should the job take longer than they initially anticipated.

such as power tools and gas cans will be stored. Keep the center of the garage open for vehicles. Periodically park cars in the garage Homeowners who are comfortable parking their vehicles in their driveways can improve their chances of maintaining organized garages over the long haul by periodically parking in the garage. Doing so not only prevents the gradual buildup of clutter that can slowly take over a garage, but also protects homeowners’ automotive investments. Maintaining an organized garage can help homeowners make more practical use of the space in their homes. Source: Metro Creative Graphics Editorial

Organized garages that are free of clutter can serve as valuable work spaces for handy homeowners. FILE PHOTO


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Saturday, March 10 8:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m.

Andover YMCA Community Center 15200 Hanson Boulevard Andover (Crosstown & Hanson)

Featuring nearly 100 home improvement and remodeling exhibitors with products and services related to home improvements and gardening. Over 1,500 area residents visited the show last year.

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INCLUDES: Oil Change Blade Sharpening Spark Plug Check Carburetor Check Air Filter Check Fresh Gas Cleaning Offer good through 04/30/18.

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– Snow Removal & Ice Dams – Fire & Flood Restorations – Interior Remodeling – Commercial – Bathrooms – Kitchens

Be ready to MOW! Only The North Suburban Home Improvement Show is sponsored by the cities of Andover, Anoka and Coon Rapids and the Anoka Area Chamber of Commerce.

discarded, organize the garage by designating areas for certain items, making sure to separate items that can pose safety risks. For example, store kids’ bicycles and outdoor toys in a corner of the garage that is opposite the corner where potentially dangerous items

Jason M. Semler, Realtor®



purchase, and let neighbors and bargain hunters do the bulk of your organization work for you. Designate areas of the garage for certain items Once the items that won’t be going back into the garage have been sold, donated or

Discard or donate duplicate items Duplicate items are some of the main culprits behind cluttered garages. As garages gradually become more cluttered, homeowners may buy tools they already have simply because they cannot find their original tools. When organizing the garage, create separate piles for duplicate tools, placing still-useful items in a pile that can be donated to neighbors, local charities or organizations and another pile for old tools that are no longer useful. Host a garage sale Homeowners who want to organize their garages and make a buck at the same time can host garage sales. Make only those items that are still functional available for

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MARCH 2018


Easter Happenings Simple seafood solutions for Lent (Family Features) With people across the country observing Lent, a religious tradition observed during the 40 days before Easter, it’s time to rethink the standard family meal menu. This nearly eight-week period typically calls for a special diet. Specifically, red meat is cut out on Fridays for some and for the entirety of Lent for others. According

to Datassential, 26 percent of consumers observe Lent and of those, 41 percent said they eat fish on Fridays instead of meat. Eating two servings of seafood per week—as recommended by the Dietary Guidelines for Americans—is one way to make a positive commitment to you and your family’s health during Lent and throughout the year. According to a study in the Journal of the

American Medical Association, research shows eating seafood 2-3 times per week reduces the risk of death from any health-related cause. Seafood also provides unique health benefits as a lean protein and

is a quality source for omega-3 fatty acids, which are healthy fats essential to human health and development. With so many seafood options available, including Alaskan cod, snapper, salmon

Wednesday Lent Schedule March 7, 14 & 21 Soup supper 6:00 p.m. Worship 7:00 p.m.

Maundy Thursday

March 29 Communion service 7:00 p.m. Find out more at


Good Friday

5:00-7:00 p.m.

A pasta alternative is provided for those who prefer. Both are served with homemade coleslaw, veggies, bun and amazing desserts! Adults $10 (16 and up); Kids $5 (ages 7-15); 6 and under Free

Easter Sunday

April 1 Sunrise service 7:00 a.m. Easter breakfast 8:00-9:00 a.m. Festival worship 9:15 a.m.

19921 Nightingale Street NW Oak Grove, MN 55011 763-753-2011 •

St. Andrew Lutheran Church

Weekend Masses

Highway 65 and 237th Avenue NE East Bethel – Cooper’s Corner

Saturday at 5:00 p.m. • Rosary at 4:30 p.m. Sunday at 9:00 & 11:00 a.m. • Rosary at 8:30 & 10:30 a.m.

763-434-7146 ELCA

For more information, please see our website at, or call 763-753-2011.


Pastor Daniel Nordin, Pastor Maria Pederson, Deacon Genndy Ose Wednesday Lent Worship at 5:30 p.m. Maundy Thursday Worship, March 29 at 6:30 p.m. Good Friday Worship, March 30 12:00 and 6:30 p.m.

Hope is Here! Easter Sunday, April 1 Worship 6:30, 8:00, 9:30 & 11:00 a.m. Communion at all Services Easter Breakfast Served by Youth – 7:30-10:45 a.m.

Join us for Sunday Worship 8:30 & 10:00 a.m. Wednesday Ignite Service at 6:30 p.m. 19001 Jackson Street NE • East Bethel West County Road 22, south on Jackson Street 763-434-6117 •


March 2, 9, 16, 23

March 30 Worship 7:00 p.m. Combined worship at Faith Lutheran Church in Isanti.

Holy Week

and more, it can be easy to incorporate this nutritious lean protein into your diet. This simple recipe for Blackened Catfish with Quinoa and Citrus Vinaigrette can help you on your way to a more nutritious meal plan that includes consuming seafood twice per week. If you can’t find catfish or prefer to substitute, any white fish such as cod, mahimahi or flounder will work. For more seafood recipes and Lenten meal inspiration, visit or follow #Seafood2xWk on social media. Blackened Catfish with Quinoa and Citrus Vinaigrette Recipe courtesy of chef Tim Hughes on behalf of the

ut “Reaching O ce oi V With A Of Hope”



Palm Sunday, March 25 • Services 8:00 & 9:30 a.m. Maundy Thursday, March 29 • Service at 6:00 p.m. Good Friday, March 30 • 7:00 p.m. • Good Friday is being celebrated with Faith Lutheran Church, 109 2nd Avenue, Isanti. All are invited. Easter Sunday, April 1 Services at 8:00, 9:30 & 10:45 a.m. Breakfast will be served 8:30-10:30 a.m.

JOIN US EACH SUNDAY FOR WORSHIP, FELLOWSHIP AND EDUCATION Sunday Worship Service – 8:00 & 9:30 a.m. Sunday School Hour/Education – 9:30 a.m. Wednesday Service & Education – 6:00 p.m. 3921 277th Avenue NW, Isanti, MN 763-444-5315 •


The Time and Talent performance

MARCH 2018





Join Nowthen Alliance Church for a potluck and performance by Ole and Lena on Thursday, March 15. Potluck luncheon will be at 11:30 a.m. with the performance beginning at 12:30 p.m. All are welcome to attend. Please enter through door C. Nowthen Alliance Church is located at 19653 Nowthen Boulevard NW, Nowthen. About Time and Talent Ole gets a letter from Pastor Thorgusson and, after hearing that Lena’s time and talent committee is looking for volunteers, assumes they want him to star in the upcoming church talent show. Enjoy the laughter as Ole tries to talk Sven into coming up with an excuse as to why he shouldn’t be in the talent show and see how Lena straightens out the entire situation while explaining the importance of utilizing our God given gifts of time and talent.

Seafood Nutrition Partnership Servings: 4 Blackening Seasoning: 1 tablespoon salt 1 tablespoon pepper 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper 1 tablespoon garlic powder 1 tablespoon thyme Quinoa Salad: 1 tablespoon peanut oil 1 cup corn, canned and drained or frozen and thawed to room temperature salt, to taste pepper, to taste ½ cup edamame, shelled

and thawed to room temperature 3 cups quinoa, cooked Blackened Catfish: 1 tablespoon peanut oil 1 pound catfish, cut into four fillets 5 tablespoons Blackening Seasoning Citrus Vinaigrette: 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1 teaspoon lemon zest 1 tablespoon honey ½ teaspoon thyme 2 tablespoons olive oil To make Blackening Seasoning: Combine salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic powder and thyme. To make Quinoa Salad: Heat and oil skillet. Add corn;


Fish Fry On Fridays, March 2, 9, 16, 23 4:30-7:00 p.m.

Egg Hunt

Kids will receive a Cone Coin from Dairy Queen. Off

5-6 minutes per side, or until well done. To make Citrus Vinaigrette: Whisk together lemon juice, lemon zest, honey and thyme. Slowly add olive oil, whisking until dressing is formed. Serve Blackened Catfish on top of Quinoa Salad and drizzle with Citrus Vinaigrette.


Easter Rain, Snow or Shine

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church


The Isanti Knights of Columbus will be serving their All You Care To Eat Fish Fry Dinner.

10:00 a.m.


of Hwy. 47 in St. Francis

Birth-2 years old receive an Easter Basket 3-10 years old hunt for Easter Eggs Don’t forget your camera, the Easter Bunny will drop by. Thanks to King’s County Market, Dairy QueenSt. Francis, St. Francis Lioness and Lions, and Oak Grove Lions for sponsoring and contributing to this child friendly event. Ole and Lena

salt and pepper, to taste, and saute until golden brown. Add edamame and sauteed corn to quinoa and set aside. To make Blackened Catfish: Heat cast-iron skillet to medium-high heat with 1 tablespoon peanut oil added. Coat both sides of catfish fillets with Blackening Seasoning. Add catfish to skillet and cook


Join us at Trinity Lutheran Church

HOLY WEEK SERVICES Palm Sunday, March 25 at 8:00 and 10:30 a.m. Holy (Maundy) Thursday, March 29 at 7:00 p.m. Good Friday, March 30 at 7:00 p.m.

He is Risen! He is Risen Indeed! Alleluia!

Come celebrate with us the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ! Easter Sunday, April 1 Sunrise Service at 6:30 a.m. Easter Services at 8:00 and 10:30 a.m. Easter breakfast served in our Family Center beginning at 7:00 a.m. for a free will offering.

TRINITY LUTHERAN CHURCH AND SCHOOL 3812 229th Avenue NW • St. Francis, Minnesota 763-753-1234 • Rev. Timothy Vaughan Rev. Keaton Christiansen


Corner of County Roads 5 and 23 in Isanti

On the menu: Alaskan Pollock, potatoes, vegetables, coleslaw, dessert and coffee/milk Come join us for fish and fellowship.

Faith Listings Abundant Life Alliance Church 3840 197th Avenue NW Oak Grove • 763-753-0284

New Life Church - Oak Grove 18975 Lake George Boulevard NW Oak Grove • 763-753-5717

Bethel Community Church 23860 Dewey Street NW Bethel • 763-434-9834

New Life Church 17261 St. Francis Boulevard NW Ramsey • 763-421-0166

Cedar United Methodist Church 17541 Jefferson Street NE Ham Lake • 763-434-7463

Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church 19001 Jackson Street NE East Bethel • 763-434-6117

Cross of Hope Lutheran Church 5730-179th Lane NW Ramsey • 763-753-2057

Saint Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church 207 Whiskey Road NW Isanti • 763-444-4035

Elim Baptist Church 114 Dahlin Street SE Isanti • 763-444-9221 Immanuel Church (OPC) 15036 Round Lake Boulevard NW Andover • 763-210-5846 Living Hope Evangelical Free Church 23038 Rum River Boulevard NW St. Francis • 763-753-1718 Long Lake Lutheran Church 3921 277th Avenue NW Isanti • 763-444-5315

St. Andrew Lutheran Church 1450 237th Avenue NE East Bethel • 763-434-7146 The Bridge Church 6443 Norris Lake Road Nowthen • 763-753-2134 Services 10:30 a.m. Trinity Lutheran Church, School and Childcare 3812 229th Avenue NW St. Francis • 763-753-1234 West Bethel United Methodist Church 1233 221st Avenue NE East Bethel • 763-434-6451


MARCH 2018


Community & Business East Bethel News


With any hope, by the time you read this, we will have had a Spring melt and warmer temps. This sure has been more of a typical Minnesota winter than in recent years. I have had my fill of below zero temps, so bring Spring on! City Project Updates Two significant transportation projects are scheduled for completion in the southern portion of East Bethel along Highway 65 this year. Central Avenue, which parallels the eastern side of Highway 65 from 183rd Avenue to 187th Lane, will be reconstructed to city standards, including concrete curbing and stormwater management controls. An important aspect of this project will be the installation of public water and sanitary sewer utilities that will

service all of the businesses along this route. This project will not only provide a muchneeded improvement to the road, but also provide reliable city services to these businesses and enhance the economic viability of this area. The Reduced Conflict Intersection (RCI) project, which is being implemented by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (MnDOT) at selected intersections in East Bethel and Ham Lake, will commence later this summer with the first RCI constructed at the intersection of 187th Lane and Highway 65, near the theater. RCIs are also planned for construction in 2019 for the 181st Avenue and the Viking Boulevard intersections with Highway 65. MnDOT has produced a series of

animations which present the concept of the signalized RCI to be constructed at Viking Boulevard and Highway 65 which can be viewed on the city’s website. These RCIs will likely cause a bit of confusion at first, but will provide vastly improved safety while allowing for the smooth movement of traffic and accessibility to our local businesses. The city will be coordinating both of these projects with MnDOT to provide continued full access to the businesses on both the east and west sides of Highway 65 during the construction period. Comprehensive Plan The City of East Bethel Planning Commission has been working for the past year on the update to our Comprehensive Plan.

surviving. The East Bethel Heart Safe group provides bystander CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) training, which is easy and quick to learn. By applying this training to a victim, you will greatly improve their chances of survival and a more complete recovery. The East Bethel Heart Safe group offers free bystander CPR and AED (automated external defibrillator) training to individuals and businesses in East Bethel and surrounding areas. The East Bethel Heart Safe group provides training to small and large groups alike. Our goal is to train as many of our residents and businesses as possible, which increases the chances that there will be a trained person available anytime a sudden cardiac arrest occurs. Again, don’t wait for the help—be the help. On behalf of the East Bethel City Council, please have a safe day.

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Through several public meetings, listening sessions and attendance at many civic events, we have gathered the community’s input about how we wish our city to grow for the next 10 years and beyond. These community efforts will be cumulated in the Draft Comprehensive Plan, which is expected to be presented to the city council in March for review, comment and approval. The Draft Comprehensive Plan will be posted on the city’s website for public review. Comments from the public are desired prior to the consideration for acceptance. Please stay tuned at www. for more information regarding the availability of the Draft Comprehensive Plan for public review. Heart Safe Don’t wait for the help—be the help! For the last several years, the East Bethel Fire Department, through the East Bethel Heart Safe Community, has been providing education and training on how to respond to a situation where a sudden cardiac arrest is occurring. What you do in the first minutes following a cardiac arrest may likely be the difference of that person

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MARCH 2018

Public invited to Anoka County Law Day

Fresh on the Farm


Plan now for garden success this summer The time to plant your garden is fast approaching. Work on your plan this month to source your seeds and transplants to ensure a bountiful harvest this coming summer and fall. Who doesn’t love looking through seed catalogs? All those beautiful pictures of tomatoes, lettuce and a whole myriad of vegetables and flowers! Each cultivar comes with a description of why this one is the tastiest, the most vigorous and the one most likely to draw the envy of your neighbor. Seed catalogs are marketing genius! Our livelihood on the farm is based on growing healthy plants which withstand Minnesota’s climate, plant diseases and pests. We hope to provide a harvest that is delicious and stores well. To that end, we carefully choose our seeds and transplants, which we grow from seeds well before the transplants can be put in the ground. In choosing our seeds we look at the reputation of the seed seller. Our two major suppliers are located in Northern climates. The catalogs they produce are rather bland, but tell us what we need to know: how many days to harvest, a description that includes disease resistance, growing notes, and characteristics of the fruit to be eaten. We keep notes on every one of the more than 200 different varieties of plants that we grow each year. Over the years, we’ve found what works and what doesn’t on our soil, in our climate and within our overall circumstances of the time and resources we can devote to weeding and watering. This isn’t different from what you can do to improve the chances of success in your own garden. Visit a place that sells seeds that are appropriate for your growing zone. The folks at the garden center, including ours, are more than happy to tell you what they know about the seeds you are about to buy. Look at the label on the seed packet. Who actually packaged these seeds? Look at the growing conditions required for a successful harvest. Does your garden contain provide conditions? When choosing transplants, look for plants that are short, stocky, healthy and have a deep green color. Especially when choosing tomatoes, resist the urge to buy the biggest, tallest plants. Short, stocky plants will actually become established in the garden more quickly than large ones and they are often more productive than large plants that have already started to fruit or flower. Go ahead, enjoy the beautiful catalog. We all have to dream. It won’t be long until you see garden centers opening and seed racks filled. Take full advantage of the helpful people who want to make sure that you grow the most vigorous plants, with the tastiest fruit, while making you the envy of your neighbors.


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The public is invited to attend Anoka County Law Day on Friday, April 27, 9:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. at the Anoka County Courthouse and Government Center, 2100 3rd Avenue in Anoka. This free event celebrates the role of law in our society and aims to promote a deeper understanding of the legal profession. This year’s theme is Separation of Powers: Framework for Freedom. Law Day events include free legal clinics and assistance in matters relating to child support, immigration, conservatorship, adult and juvenile expungement, evictions, warrants, drivers license reinstatement and more. Courthouse tours, Q&A sessions with a district court judge and Sheriff K-9 Unit demonstrations will also be part of the day’s events.

Bright smiles at Cedar Creek Community School GRETCHEN RANDALL


Jennifer Riechow, Cambridge Pine City Orthodontics employee and parent of a second-grade student, came to talk to second-grade classes about dental health. The visit included a reading of The Tooth Book by Edward Miller and a demonstration on how to properly brush and floss teeth. Each student was given their own dental health care package, which included a toothbrush, toothpaste and floss picks. Students were also invited to participate in a coloring contest to win an electric toothbrush. A huge thank you to Cambridge Pine City Orthodontics for teaching us how to care for our teeth!

Saturday March 17

Wear green and join us for a shamrockin’ good time. We’re serving Corned Beef & Cabbage Plus other Irish favorites

8:00 p.m. – Midnight


Bingo every Monday and Thursday

All-You-Can-Eat Fish Fry every Friday $11.95




27821 Bay Shore Drive NW Isanti, MN 763-444-5897 Mon-Th 11 a.m.-11 p.m.; Fri 11 a.m.-1 a.m. Sat 8 a.m.-1 a.m.; Sun 8 a.m.-11 p.m.


MARCH 2018


Students in Saints Academy explore career options JULIE GLOEGE


of tomorrow and provide valuable resources to students. Mate Precision Tooling in

Anoka provided a tour of their plant and lunch for students interested in manufacturing.

Students need a plan after graduation. That plan could be attending a four-year college, a technical college, getting on-the-job training and certification through an apprenticeship or working a full-time job in the trades or other career area. There are multiple options available; it is all about finding the right fit for each student. At Saints Academy in St. Francis Area Schools, staff members are hard at work helping students find their career paths after graduation. Area businesses are also invested in the work force

Classic Construction in East Bethel has been interviewing students for apprenticeships


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763-502-2941 Steve Kempers, MD • Minnesota Clinical Study Center 7205 University Avenue NE • Fridley, MN 55432

in construction. Students had questions answered at the Anoka Career Fair hosted by Anoka Technical College. Saints Academy is teaming up with some St. Francis Middle School eighth-graders to attend the Hinckley Convention Center for Construct Tomorrow, a hands-on learning trade show. Students in career exploration classes have been emailing business professionals at Thrivent Financial in Minneapolis through the Bestprep program. They have been getting answers to questions about skills needed in the workplace and interviewing tips. Students visited Thrivent Financial (pictured) where they met with their business mentors. The Minnesota Association for Alternative Programs (MAAP STARS) leadership team, along with advisor Julie Gloege, visited the state capitol in February to talk with representatives about the need for continued funding for alternative education and career technical education. A purpose of MAAP STARS is for students to experience career-related activities that in turn assist them in making informed career choices. STARS represent Success, Teamwork, Achievement, Recognition and Self-esteem. Saints Academy students continue to gain important work skills at multiple jobs in the St. Francis area and surrounding communities, internships provided within St. Francis Area Schools and other apprenticeships upon graduation. Gloege, the work-based learning coordinator for Saints Academy, was recently voted the Northwest Metro Regional director for MAAP at a conference in Mankato February 7-9. This networking position provides opportunities for students in the northwest metro area to gain experience in work skills through collaborating with other advisors and the state MAAP board. Saints Academy staff continue to seek opportunities for students to explore career options. Thanks to area businesses and community members for supporting the program. Contact Julie Gloege at if you have career opportunities for students to explore.



MARCH 2018

Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation LEAP Conference 2018 PAULA MOHR


Four members of the Anoka County Farm Bureau attended the 2018 Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation’s Leadership, Education, Advocacy and Promotion (LEAP) Conference January 26-27 at Treasure Island near Red Wing. The conference, which drew record-setting attendance, is an annual event that helps members grow their leadership skills to help them advocate and promote agriculture in their communities. Educational topics for attendees covered a wide range of issues. Breakout sessions included discussion on the opioid crisis in rural America, global trade

markets and why they are important to U.S. and Minnesota agriculture, how to engage constituents and legislators, how to advocate for agriculture, and how to share stories from farm to fork. Attendees also were encouraged to bring new sock donations that would be given to Allen Law, aka the Sandwich Man, who feeds thousands of homeless and hungry residents in Minneapolis every year. More than 1,400 pairs of socks were collected for Warm Feet for Cold Streets. In addition, through the Minnesota Farm Bureau Foundation, those attending raised $2,600 for bus tokens to be used by the homeless in Minneapolis. The conference included a competitive

event where participants are judged on their basic knowledge of critical farm issues and their ability to exchange ideas and information in a setting aimed at cooperative problem-solving. Attending from Anoka County Farm Bureau were Dick and Juanita Boniface, Paula Mohr, farmer and magazine editor, and Emily Trout, Saints Academy & Saints Online agricultural education teacher.

Legislative Update


The week of February 19 marked the start of the 2018 legislative session. Though it’s a shorter session, there is still plenty to accomplish. I want to give you a quick preview of what I see as some of the major issues facing us this session. One of the major areas we will look to tackle is conformity with the new federal tax code. Republicans in Washington passed a massive tax relief package that is already paying dividends for families in Minnesota and across the country. However, this creates a challenge at the state level as we will need to conform to the new tax code. This sounds simple, but we need to make sure we do this in a way that provides the intended tax relief for Minnesotans. It could be a lengthy process, but I’m confident we can help to further ease the tax burden for our residents. Heading into this year, we will also take a look at the state’s new licensing system, MNLARS. If you have transferred a title or tried to get new tabs since July, you have likely experienced delays, shutdowns or your order still hasn’t been processed. The root of the problem is MNLARS, a $100 million, 10-year project that produced a system wrought with issues. Despite numerous assurances from those in charge of MNLARS, the system is still broken with no fixes in sight. In fact, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety came to the legislature asking for almost $50 million more. The utter waste of taxpayer dollars is shocking and we need to make sure the state gets this system working without wasting more of your tax dollars. Personally, I would like to see

the legislature make significant reforms to the Metropolitan Council. These unelected leaders are appointed by the governor, yet have the authority to levy a tax. Since they are not elected, they are only accountable to the governor. It’s wrong for this much influence to be in the hands of unelected officials. We need to look at all avenues including making the Transportation Advisory Board function a standalone function, in order to give taxpayers more say in these large decisions. Also, I’m working on a bill to eliminate the Minnesota commercial truck inspection requirement. Federal law already requires an inspection. Having our own inspection

program is duplicative and an unnecessary use of resources. As legislators, we must identify and fix all areas of waste and duplication no matter the size. I welcome calls, emails or visits to the capitol so you can share your opinion with me. Feel free to contact me at 651-296-2439 or Representative Cal Bahr represents District 31B, which includes all or part of the cities of Oak Grove, Andover, Ham Lake and East Bethel and all or part of Columbus Township and Linwood Township. District 31B has a population of 39,602. (Source: https://www.leg.state.

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Attending the 2018 Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation LEAP conference at Treasure Island January 26-27 and representing the Anoka County Farm Bureau were (L-R) Paula Mohr, Emily Trout, Dick Boniface and Juanita Reed-Boniface. SUBMITTED PHOTO 3220 Bridge Street, Suite 107 in the St. Francis Mall


763-753-1277 for an Appointment

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Specializing in Sports, Industrial and Auto Accident Injuries


For recognition of their accomplishments— players, coaches and staff affiliated with

the 1999, 2002 and 2006 St. Francis High School baseball teams who went to the state tournament.

The St. Francis Baseball Association would like to recognize these individuals with a ceremony and social on Saturday, May 5. The ceremony will take place between the SFHS junior varsity (4:30 p.m.) and varsity (7:00 p.m.) baseball games against Forest Lake. A social is tentatively being planned, 8:00 p.m.-midnight at the St. Francis American Legion, Post 622. Please RSVP if you are interesting in attending, contact Jeff Fink at 763-213-1504 or



MARCH 2018


Wolves return to Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve

News from Anoka-Ramsey Community College




Join your neighbors on Saturday, March 10 to learn about wolf research, humanwildlife relationships and conservation! This community event, cosponsored by the International Wolf Center, will begin at 1:00 p.m. at Cedar Creek Ecosystem Science Reserve’s (CCESR) Lindeman Research and Discovery Center, which is located at 2660 Fawn SUBMITTED PHOTO Lake Drive NE in East Bethel. Speakers with a variety of perspectives will take part in a panel discussion and question-and-answer session in an effort to share information about the local wolf population and CCESR’s efforts to study the wolves’ ecological impact. The panel discussion will also include input from two residents who live near the science reserve. Speakers and panelists will include: Forest Isbell, associate director of CCESR; Jim Krueger, building and grounds supervisor at CCESR; Caitlin Potter, education and outreach coordinator at CCESR; L. David Mech, co-founder of the International Wolf Center; Nancy Gibson, co-founder of the International Wolf Center; Bob Shimek, executive director of the White Earth Land Recovery Project; Don VanderMey, resident of East Bethel; Kari Skoog, resident of East Bethel. Following the speakers and panel discussion, the International Wolf Center will present an interactive, family-friendly wolf education program. This part of the event will begin around 2:00 p.m. Funding for the community program and the ongoing wolf study is provided by the state of Minnesota’s Environmental and Natural Resources Trust Fund.


Enrollment increases

Scholardazzle fundraising event breaks record in funding The annual Anoka-Ramsey Community College (ARCC) Cambridge Community College Center (CCCC) Foundation Scholardazzle scholarship fundraising event in January was the most successful yet, helping to fund more scholarships than ever before. More than 265 guests attended the event on January 26 and nearly $80,000 was raised to support Cambridge Campus students. The event included a social hour, dinner, student speaker, live music performance, silent/ live and cake auction, games and prizes. The foundation sends a special thank you to student and staff volunteers, the Anoka-Ramsey faculty jazz band, CCCC Foundation board members and volunteer coordinator, Lisa Sisson.

Art in Bloom participants The annual Art in Bloom event, hosted by Minneapolis Institute of Arts, includes several pieces from ARCC staff and students. Art in Bloom opens Wednesday, April 25 and runs through Sunday, April 29. Erick Wiger and Jessica Shimek, lab assistants, Jack Harrison, current student, and alumni Amy Houle and Derek Prescott have been selected to participate. Art in Bloom florists are volunteer floral enthusiasts from a range of backgrounds. Anyone, regardless of floral arranging experience, is welcome to participate. For more information about Art-In-Bloom, visit

Production of He Said & She Said hits the stage Anoka-Ramsey Community College will showcase their students’ hard work in the winter production of He Said & She Said by Alice Gerstenberg. The play hits the Cambridge theatre’s stage March 1-3 at 7:30 p.m. with a 2:00 p.m. matinee on March 4. Tickets are $8 and $5 for seniors on March 4. For more information about the production, visit

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President Kent Hanson honored Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) will honor Dr. Kent Hanson, president of ARCC, with the Shirley B. Gordon Award of Distinction in April. Hanson is among one of 35 college presidents who will be recognized during PTK Catalyst 2018, the society’s annual convention, held April 19-21 in Kansas City, Missouri. These awards honor college presidents who have demonstrated outstanding effort toward promoting the goals of PTK, which include recognizing academic achievement and providing college students with opportunities to grow as scholars and leaders.

Anoka-Ramsey Community College and Anoka Technical College both saw an increase in enrollment from 2017 to 2018, in response to demand for high-quality, affordable college education in Minnesota. The two colleges, which are accredited members of the Minnesota State system, succeeded in both attracting new students and retaining current students. At ARCC, enrollment increased by 3.1 percent from spring 2017 to spring 2018, for an enrollment of 4,658 Full Time Equivalency (FTE) a standard used to measure student enrollment relative to the number of credit hours taken. At Anoka Technical College, enrollment increased by 3.9 percent FTE from spring 2017 to spring 2018, leading to an enrollment of 1,175 FTE. Both colleges are also showing increased enrollment for continuing students, with a 1.6 percent increase in retention at ARCC and a 4 percent increase in retention at Anoka Tech. There is also a renewed focus on increasing student retention. Those numbers climbed from spring 2017 to 2018, as well.

Instructors receive Minnesota State Artist Initiatives Grants Anoka-Ramsey Community College Art Instructor Anthony Marchetti was awarded a 2018 Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative grant to complete his work on a photography project entitled “Paul.” Marchetti teaches photography and has been working since 2013 on the project, which explores the life of a man who immigrated to the U.S. from Europe at the end of World War II. The $10,000 grant will help fund the completion and production of the finished product. Anoka-Ramsey Community College art instructor Pao Her was selected as a recipient of a 2018 Minnesota State Artist Initiative grant for $10,000, to support her work in photography. Her was born in Laos and raised in Saint Paul. She plans to use the grant to complete a photography project entitled “Desire.”

Scholarship of Teaching and Learning initiative Faculty are laying the groundwork to improve education for all community college students, starting with the students at ARCC, under a new initiative called the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. Through faculty research, changing classroom instruction and assessing impact, the initiative allows faculty to better understand how community college students learn and enhance teaching to improve success. Deidra Peaslee, Ed.D., vice president of Academic and Student Affairs at ARCC, was instrumental in launching the program last year. She said the goal is to support faculty as they conduct original research projects in order to improve student learning outcomes.

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MARCH 2018


Community Education Community Ed Spotlight: Rec Football KATRINNA DODGE


It seems like yesterday people were preparing for Super Bowl festivities and in a month from now, the National Football League will hold its 2018 draft. St. Francis Area Schools parents and students will begin gearing up for the upcoming football season as St. Francis High School has held informational meetings and the Community Education (CE) Rec Department preps for its fall season. “Football teaches life lessons,” asserted Jeremy Skogquist, youth football coach. Such lessons include being a team player, respect, how to overcome obstacles and more. Skogquist also noted how he sees behavioral improvements with students he coaches from football to baseball. Jeff Bergman, youth football coach, expanded on how football players learn teamwork, sportsmanship, strategy and how having healthy competition translates into mentorship opportunities and good grades and behavior overall. “Positive coaching is to encourage players to do better,” explained Bergman. “I’ve had players and parents come up to me and say, ‘I like what you have done with so-and-so person on our team because they have had troubles in school. You have helped and football has helped.’” “Football isn’t just about football, it can also be about life,” affirmed Bergman. “Anybody and everybody can play Rec football,” commented Skogquist. “It’s a way for students to stay out of trouble, socialize with buddies and work on hand-eye coordination and footwork.” The CE Rec Department encourages adults to volunteer to coach for a variety of youth programs. This is part of the program’s success and helps connect parents, staff, students and community members. Bergman and Skogquist are two of these coaches that bring their talent and love for football to St. Francis. “I grew up in St. Francis,” stated Skogquist. “Being a

coach allows me to give back to my community.” “Jake, my son, helps mentor our team, with a couple other players,” said Bergman. “Being a mentor is passing on the legacy of football. The younger kids get a chance to look up to a role model.” Both Bergman and Skogquist started volunteering when their kids started playing. Skogquist has coached football for six years and Bergman has coached for eight years. Besides Rec football, they coach on the St. Francis Youth Baseball Association which Skogquist is the president. Bergman also coaches with the St. Francis Traveling Basketball Association. These active community members balance

their volunteer work with fulltime jobs—Skogquist is the vice president of NIH Homes and Bergman is pastor at New Life Church. Bergman and Skogquist noted the importance of available space to play. In their shared opinion, there is a possible future for a community center to provide extracurricular activities, youth associations and Community Ed more practice and competition space. “I think it is nice to have different options for students, because they are gifted in so many different ways,” mentioned Bergman. “Some kids are good at football, some are good at soccer and some are good at art. It is important

Flag and tackle football through the Community Ed Rec Department provides players, parents and community members the chance to bond over healthy competition.





Announcement for parents of St. Francis alumnus to be well-rounded and the more extracurricular activities the better. It keeps them occupied in finding a good peer group and keeps them out of trouble.” Registration for flag and youth tackle football will open over the 2018 summer. Look for updates from Community Ed in the mail and via The Courier, Facebook @ isd15communityed and



Calling all parents of St. Francis Area Schools alumni! The Courier has adopted a new practice of no longer accepting mass emails from colleges outlining dean’s list recipients for alumni. We encourage parents to submit personal stories to of their student’s success after graduating from St. Francis Area Schools.

Community Education Directory Community Education Director............................................................... 763-753-7048 Adult Basic Education (GED)...................................................................... 763-753-7190 Adult Enrichment & Rec................................................................................ 763-213-1640 Communications/The Courier.................................................................. 763-753-7031 Youth Enrichment • Grades K-5................................................................ 763-213-1616 Districtwide Youth • Grades 7-12............................................................. 763-213-1640 Driver Education/Behind the Wheel..................................................... 763-213-1640 Early Childhood Family Education.......................................................... 763-753-7170 Early Childhood Screening.......................................................................... 763-753-7187 Facility Scheduling............................................................................................ 763-213-1589 Kids Connection/Just 4 Kids Program Supervisor..................................................................................... 763-213-1616 Cedar Creek Community School Site............................................... 763-753-7160 East Bethel Community School Site.................................................. 763-213-8921 Lifelong Learning Center Site................................................................ 763-753-7199 St. Francis Elementary School Site..................................................... 763-213-8674 Preschool Place 15/School Readiness.................................................. 763-753-7170 Rec Department................................................................................................. 763-213-1823 • •

Fitness for all!

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instruction at St. Francis High School CLASSROOM EDUCATION

Registration for classroom driver education is being accepted for the 2017-18 school year. Classroom driver education information available on the website.

BEHIND-THE-WHEEL DRIVING INSTRUCTION Six hours of required behind-the-wheel instruction Flexible scheduling State of Minnesota certified instructors Fee $260

Applications available at or call 763-213-1640 for more information. Sponsored by ISD 15 Community Education

Fitness 15 Sandhill Center • 23820 Dewey Street • Bethel

Monday-Thursday, 8:30-11:30 a.m. & 1:00-4:00 p.m. Friday Closed


MARCH 2018



in St. Francis Area Schools Early Childhood


Call ECFE at for more information or to register for any of the opportunities on this page. Lifelong Learning Center • 18900 Cedar Drive NW, Oak Grove • Online at Follow St. Francis Area Schools Early Childhood on Facebook to stay in the know and connect with other parents.

Do you have a new baby in your house? Celebrating Baby Birth-12 months Enjoy songs and games together and meet others who are experiencing the joys and challenges of raising a baby.

Course: EC 0505 Date: Thursday, April 12 Time: 9:15-11:15 a.m. Fee: FREE

Come join us for an ECFE Babies and Parents Class

Early Childhood Family Education A division of ISD 15 Community Education 763-753-7170

Birth-16 months Enjoy songs and games together and meet others who are experiencing the joys and challenges of raising a baby. This is a nonseparating class.

Course: EC 0504 Dates: Thursdays, April 19–May 24 Time: 9:15-11:15 a.m. Fee: FREE

Babies and Parents Class doesn’t work for your schedule? Schedule a Welcome Baby Home Visit An early childhood teacher will schedule a visit with you and your baby in your home or at the Lifelong Learning Center. Information about the joys and struggles of being a parent, infant milestones and development, Early Childhood Family Education and community resources will be shared with you. Call Jenny at 763-753-7196 or email jennifer. for more information.

Preschool Place 15 registration for 2018-19 has begun! The curriculum of Preschool Place 15 focuses on social skills and early literacy development. Mathematical thinking, scientific thinking, social studies, the arts and physical development are also part of the curriculum. Environments are designed to enhance and expand children’s understanding of the world as they direct their own play. Teachers facilitate the child’s learning; they guide and encourage independent learning in each child. } Classes offered at the Lifelong Learning Center in Oak Grove } Programming takes place September through May } Morning, afternoon and evening sessions available } One, two, three or four times per week } Two-hour to two-and-a-half-hour sessions } Most classes are age specific } Classes are also available for two-year-olds and very young three-year-olds } Busing available for ALL full-year morning and afternoon classes } Sliding fee scale is available based on family size and income

You may qualify for FREE or reduced preschool tuition and fees based on family size and income. Tuition reduction is available through Early Learning Pathway II Scholarships and/or School Readiness funds. If you meet income eligibility requirements or participate in one of the following programs: Minnesota Family Investment Program, Child Care Assistance Program, Free and ReducedPrice Lunch Program, Child and Adult Care Food Program, Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations, Food Support (SNAP) or Foster Care. Call Jenny at 763-753-7196 for more information.

For more information on classes and to register, visit or call 763-753-7170.

St. Francis Area Schools Early Childhood Family Advocate Family life can be challenging, especially if you or your child is experiencing stress. Asking for assistance, no matter what the concern, is a sign of strength! We are here to listen and provide free, confidential and respectful support to families with young children. The St. Francis Area Schools Early Childhood Family Advocate can talk with you in person or over the phone to offer: • A warm and helpful connection to community resources • Help to identify and secure stable housing and obtain emergency access to basic needs (food, clothing, diapers) • Information and advocacy in navigating legal, medical and mental health services • Caring support during times of transition or crisis such as family separation, relocation, relationship concerns, grief and loss, or a health or financial crisis. • A collaborative approach to addressing social, emotional or behavioral concerns you may have about your child For more information contact Taryn Tessneer, Early Childhood Family Advocate at 763-213-8916 or

Early Childhood Events Parent/Child Yoga

Come to Pop In and Play!

Wind down from a busy day with your preschooler in this parent/child yoga class. Relax and learn basic poses in a fun setting. Designed for parents and children ages 3-6; two year olds can attend if able to stay involved for the entire time. Allison Miller, RYT-200 will instruct this class. Course: EC 9707 Dates: Thursdays, March 22-April 26 Time: 5:00-5:45 p.m. Fee: $30 per child Deadline: February 28

Do you and your children need something to do in this cold weather? Check out Pop In and Play! Come once or come every week, whatever works for your schedule. Meet other families and build relationships that last a lifetime. No pre-registration required. Days & Times: Tuesdays 12:45-2:45 p.m. Wednesdays 9:15-11:15 a.m. Fee: $4 per child/max $12 per family (limit of 4 children per adult)

KinderKonzert @ Orchestra Hall in Minneapolis From learning about acoustics of the building to playing an instrument, children (and parents) list this as one of their favorite trips ever. Share the joy of music with this experience especially for four and five year olds and their parents (Orchestra Hall requirement). We’ll even get a behind the scene look at Orchestra Hall. Pack a bag lunch to eat on the bus. Course: EC 9404 Date: Friday, May 4 Time: Bus leaves LLC at 9:30 a.m.; returns by 2:00 p.m. Fee: $10 per person Deadline: Noon, April 17

Pop In and Play! Schedule: March 13 14 20 21 27 28

Music Man Here Comes the Circus Pond Life Sparkles and Shiny Things Under the Sea Turtles and Frogs

April 3 4

Shake Your Sillies Out Pete the Cat

Visit our webpage at for more events and classes.


MARCH 2018

Attention childcare providers

Classes & Events

St. Francis Area Schools Early Childhood offers CEU hours for childcare providers. The following class is the next offering.

23820 Dewey Street Bethel, MN 55005

Growth Mindset There are two types of mindsets: fixed mindset and growth mindset. The ways adults and environments operate allow children’s mindsets to take shape. Come learn how you as a childcare professional can have a profound impact on the mindset children have. Scott Schwister presents information and provides activities and examples for you to implement in your program the very next day. Scott is a former middle and high school language arts teacher. He also taught educational technology in Hamline University’s certificate and licensure programs. He has presented at regional and national conferences including ISTE, TIES and Learning Forward on topics related to technology integration, growth mindset, coaching, equity and professional learning. His presentation and wealth of resources will change your entire look on life. Are you ready to learn more? Register today! Course: EC9901 Date: Wednesday, March 14 Time: 6:30-8:30 p.m. Location: Lifelong Learning Center 18900 Cedar Drive NW, Oak Grove Fee: $3 per person Registration for childcare workshops can be done online at; email or call 763-753-7178.

Calling all 3 & 4 year olds Early Childhood Screening is waiting to see you!


Do you have a child who is three or four years old? Have they been through Early Childhood Screening? Early Childhood Screening should be completed after the child’s third birthday. Screening is a free, simple check of a young child’s health and development; it does not determine kindergarten readiness. Screening includes a development assessment, vision and hearing checks, immunization and health review. Call 763-753-7187 if you currently have a 3 or 4-year-old child who has not been screened. The next screening dates and times are: Tuesday, March 13, 3:30-6:30 p.m. and Wednesday, March 14, 9:00-11:00 a.m.

Program Sites Cedar Creek Community School East Bethel Community School St. Francis Elementary School Lifelong Learning Center Kids Connection is a comprehensive childcare program for children in kindergarten through grade five that provides a safe, fun experience and offers families a variety of childcare options. The program is open 6:00 a.m.-6:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Hours include before and after school programs and full day programs on non-school days. Just 4 Kids is a childcare option for children who are three years of age by September 1, 2017, to kindergarten entrance. Children participate in various activities in a safe, well-supervised environment. Extended childcare options are available. Customize your childcare arrangements! Before and after preschool, daily and weekly rates are available for Just 4 Kids.


Call 763-213-1616 or 763-213-1641 or visit

Enjoy top entertainment by popular local artists at the monthly Lunch Bunch shows. Make sure to register early, most shows will sell out! Lunch Bunch is located at Sandhill Center in Bethel. Doors open: 10:30 a.m. Lunch served: 11:00 a.m. Showtime: 11:30 a.m.-12:45 p.m. Cost: $20 Seating is on a first-come, first-served basis. For reservations, call


or register online at

Shawn Sweeney

with Irish “Music that Tickles” Tuesday, March 13 Course: #LB177 Come prepared to celebrate the month of St. Patrick with the timeless music of the Emerald Isle sung and played by none other than that son of the auld sod, Shawn Sweeney. Combining an exquisitely expressive and flexible voice, a wonderful and evocative musical timing and an offbeat and, yes, somewhat warped sense of humor, Shawn provides you, his listener, with a wonderful music experience guaranteed to touch your heart and tickle your funny bone.

Strength In class you will use dumbbells/hand weights and resistance bands to strengthen muscles, improve bone density and increase metabolism. Class is for seniors or active older adults. Day: Monday Time: 8:00-8:45 am Instructor: Cathie Hagford Fee: $2 per class, no registration required (class is not eligible for insurance reimbursement)

Line Dancing Have fun and move to the music through a variety of exercises designed to increase muscular strength, range of movement and activities for daily living. This is an excellent class for those just beginning in line dance as well as the more experienced line dancers! Day: Thursday Time: 10:00-11:00 am Instructor: Ginger Anderson Fee: $2 per class, no registration required (class is not eligible for insurance reimbursement)

SilverSneakers® Yoga

SilverSneakers® Yoga will move your whole body through a complete series of seated and standing yoga poses. Chair support is offered to safely perform a variety of seated and standing postures designed to increase flexibility, balance and range of movement. Restorative breathing exercises and final relaxation will promote stress reduction and mental clarity. Days: Monday, Wednesday, Friday Time: 9:00-10:00 am Instructor: Cathie Hagford Fee: Free to SilverSneakers® and Silver & Fit® members, $2 per class for non-members, no registration required

SilverSneakers® Classic

Have fun and move to the music through a variety of exercises designed to increase muscular strength, range of movement and activities for daily living. Hand–held weights, elastic tubing with handles and a SilverSneakers® ball are offered for resistance. A chair is available if needed for seated or standing support. Days: Wednesday, Friday Time: 8:00-8:45 am Instructor: Cathie Hagford Fee: Free to SilverSneakers® and Silver & Fit® members, $2 per class for non-members, no registration required

Fitness 15 We offer plenty of ways for you to get in shape, so you’ll never be bored with working out. We have two treadmills, two elliptical trainers, two stationary bikes and a Nautilus four-station weight machine. Relaxed atmosphere—senior citizens are encouraged to attend! Days: Monday-Thursday Times: 8:30-11:30 am 1:00-4:00 pm Fee: $2 per visit, no registration required (no membership fees)

Sandhill is a Silver & Fit qualified center. For more information on the Healthways SilverSneakers Fitness Program or the Sandhill Center, please call 763-213-1640. To see if you qualify as a Silver & Fit member or a SilverSneakers member, please contact your insurance company.



MARCH 2018

Meetings, Benefits & Events


St. Francis Area Schools

Community Service



SCHOOL BOARD MEETINGS: March 12 & 26 Dialogue with the School Board 6:30 p.m., Regular Meeting 7:00 p.m., April 9 & 23 Dialogue with the School Board 6:30 p.m., Regular Meeting 7:00 p.m. at Central Services Center, Community Room, 4115 Ambassador Boulevard NW, St. Francis.

NORTH ANOKA COUNTY FOODSHELF (NACE) – Provides food and clothing for people in need through the generosity of our community. Hours of operation are: Monday 9:00 a.m.-Noon, Tuesday 5:00-8:00 p.m., Wednesday 1:00-4:00 p.m., Thursday 8:00-11:00 a.m. NACE is located at 18511 Hwy. 65 NE, Suites 100, 200 in East Bethel. For more information, to donate or volunteer, please call 763-434-7685 or visit

EDWARD JONES COFFEE CLUB meets the second Tuesday of the month at 8:00 a.m. at Bridge Street Coffee, 3122 Viking Blvd., Oak Grove.

OAK GROVE SENIORS Meet at noon the second and fourth Wednesday of the month, Oak Grove City Hall for a potluck and short business meeting, bingo follows. For information about the club and events, call Sandy Dabrowski at 763-689-1705.

City & Township Meetings ANDOVER CITY COUNCIL Meets 1st & 3rd Tuesday, 7:00 p.m., 1685 Crosstown Boulevard NW, Andover 763-755-5100 BETHEL CITY COUNCIL Meets 1st & 3rd Thursday, 7:00 p.m. 23820 Dewey Street, Bethel, 763-434-4366 NOWTHEN CITY COUNCIL Meets 2nd Tuesday, 7:00 p.m. 19800 Nowthen Boulevard NW, Nowthen 763-441-1347 EAST BETHEL CITY COUNCIL Meets 1st & 3rd Wednesday, 7:00 p.m. 2241 221st Avenue NE, East Bethel 763-367-7840 OAK GROVE CITY COUNCIL Meets 2nd & last Monday, 7:00 p.m. 19900 Nightingale Street NW, Oak Grove 763-404-7000 ST. FRANCIS CITY COUNCIL Meets 1st & 3rd Monday, 6:00 p.m. St. Francis Area Schools Central Services Center, St. Francis 763-753-2630 STANFORD TOWNSHIP BOARD Meets 1st Monday, 7:00 p.m. 5050 261st Avenue NW, Isanti, 763-444-6370

Health & Fitness NEW EAST BETHEL TOPS weight loss support group meeting. Meeting held at St. Andrew Lutheran Church, 1450 237th Avenue NE, East Bethel, Mondays at 5:30 p.m. Visitors are welcome to their first meeting free of charge with no obligation. TOPS CHAPTER MN #1774 Meets every Tuesday morning at 9:00 a.m. at the St. Francis Community Center, 23340 Cree Street N. TOPS stands for Take Off Pounds Sensibly and is a weight loss support group. Check out a meeting or visit

LONG LAKE LUTHERAN CHURCH Invites you to join us for GriefShare Wednesday evenings at 7:00 p.m. Free. We are located five miles north of St. Francis on Hwy. 47. For more information please contact Sharon Sudeith at 763-444-4483 or visit www. For general information on the GriefShare program, visit www. GRIEFSHARE grief recovery support group: Meets at First Baptist Church in St. Francis each Wednesday, 7:00-8:30 p.m. Child care is provided through sixth-grade. The church is located at 22940 St. Francis Blvd. NW. GriefShare is a 14-week program to provide help and encouragement after the death of a spouse, child, family member or friend. For more information, call Mike or Sharon at 763-442-0401 or visit

AA/NA AA/NA Meeting at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church in East Bethel. NA on Mondays at 7:00 p.m., AA on Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m., NA on Fridays at 6:30 p.m. AA Meets at Long Lake Lutheran Church, 5 miles north of St. Francis on Hwy. 47, Tuesdays at 7:00 p.m.

Area Chambers of Commerce ST. FRANCIS AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE Board meeting is the third Wednesday (March 21) of each month, 11:00 a.m. at the St. Francis Community Center, 23340 Cree Street, St. Francis. Meetings are open to the public. Visit our or call 763-4385163 for more details.

American Legion

NORTH 65 CHAMBER OF COMMERCE For more information about the North 65 Chamber visit

AMERICAN LEGION AUXILIARY UNIT 622 – ST. FRANCIS General membership meets on the third Thursday of the month at 7:00 p.m. All members of the auxiliary are welcome and encouraged to attend. For more information, call 763-753-4234.

EAST BETHEL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE Board meeting is March 27, 8:00-9:00 a.m. at Aggressive Hydraulics, 18800 Ulysses Street NE, Cedar. Visit www.eastbethelchamber. com for more info.

AMERICAN LEGION POST 622 – ST. FRANCIS General membership meets the second Thursday of the month at 7:00 p.m. All members of the post are welcome and encouraged to attend. For more information, call 763-753-4234.

HAM LAKE AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE Board of Directors meeting is March 21, 9:00 a.m., location to be determined. Visit www.hamlakechamber for location and more information.

Lions/Lioness CEDAR/EAST BETHEL LIONS CLUB Meets bimonthly, first and third Tuesday, 7:00 p.m., at Maxx’s Restaurant & Bar on Hwy. 65. Call Judy Ricke at 763-226-4893. OAK GROVE LIONS CLUB Meets every second and fourth Tuesday of the month at Oak Grove City Hall, 7:00 p.m., adjourning at 8:00 p.m. For more information, call Lion Mark Silvernagel at 763-753-2215. NOWTHEN LIONS CLUB Are you looking to serve in your community of Nowthen? Meet new friends? Have a lot of fun? Come join the Nowthen Lions Club! The Nowthen Lions meet at Nowthen City Hall on the first Thursday of the month for the board meeting and on the third Thursday of the month for the membership meeting. Please email ST. FRANCIS LIONESS CLUB Meets monthly. First Wednesday, administrative board and third Wednesday, general membership meeting at 6:30 p.m. Meetings are held at St. Francis City Hall, 23340 Cree Street. For more information, call Mary Madden at 763-444-5020 or Cheryl Eldstrom at 763-753-4602 or email bluesage51@ ST. FRANCIS LIONS CLUB Meets three times during the month at the St. Francis American Legion. First Wednesday board meeting; second Wednesday regular business meeting; fourth Wednesday social and program. All meetings start at 7:00 p.m. and adjourn at 8:15 p.m. Call Lion Kevin Schuldt for more information at 763-7531205 or visit CEDAR/EAST BETHEL LIONESS CLUB Meets the first Monday of the month at 6:00 p.m. at Maxx’s Restaurant & Bar on Hwy. 65. For membership information call Yvonne Johnson, 763-434-6985. We Serve!

Jobs! St. Francis Area Schools is looking for the following: Custodians, Educational Assistants, Nutrition Services, Bus Drivers and Substitutes. Please visit and click on employment. Find your next job with! We’ve been helping connect employers and job seekers for over 20 years. Visit our site to find your next job. We have employers with immediate openings for Direct Support Professionals, CDL Drivers, Machinists/ Tool Designers and much, much more. No registration necessary! Simply search and apply. Go to to get started today!

ST. FRANCIS SENIORS Life is good when you can make new friends, get out and enjoy the multitude of activities that our community has to offer. We meet the first and third Thursday of each month at St. Francis City Hall Meeting Room, 23340 Cree Street NW, St. Francis. Social time and lunch begins at noon, with the meeting beginning at 1:00 p.m. and games until 3:00 p.m. We play cards, bingo, scrabble, cribbage, go on trips, lunch outings, have picnics and stay active as we get older. Come and see what we are about. Call Rollie Spier at 612-501-0916 for more info. EAST BETHEL SENIORS Dances are held 1:00-4:00 p.m. Cost is $6, lunch included. The dance on Friday, March 2 will have old time music played by Jim Armstrong. Entertainment for April 6 will be by Dick Szyplinski. Are you 55 or older? Come and enjoy some companionship. All are welcome. Seniors meet the third Thursday of each month for a business meeting and catered noon lunch, 10:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.; second Wednesday of each month is crafts, 9:00 a.m.-noon; fourth Wednesday is crafts only, 9:00 a.m.-noon. We also go on tours, etc. Rent the Senior Center, call Dennis at 763-434-9244. Join East Bethel Seniors for $10 a year and receive a monthly newsletter. The East Bethel Senior Center is located one mile east of Highway 65 on 221st Avenue in East Bethel.

Have an engagement, wedding or birth announcement or an article you would like published in The Courier? Use the convenient online submission form at Questions? Call 763-753-7031 for more info.


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MARCH 2018

Sports & Outdoors High school wrestling ends season strong BRIAN SWORSKY


were unable to repeat as conference champions for a second year. Four of our individuals are receiving recognition by being ranked top ten in the state. At the top of his weight class currently ranked first at 170 pounds is senior Cole Kirpach. Ranked second at 145 pounds is senior captain Mitchell Wilson. Senior captain Tanner Kunshier is ranked third at 126 pounds. Finally, senior Luke Lipinski ranks tenth at 160 pounds. As a team, the Fighting Saints are ranked tenth in the state going into the postseason. The team section tournament was held at CambridgeIsanti High School on February 16 with the section champions moving on to the state tournament. The Saints made it to the semifinal match, but fell to Forest Lake in a close dual 25-28. The individual section tournament was held at Anoka High School February 23-24, with the top two in each weight class advancing to the state tournament. The state wrestling tournament will be held at the Excel Energy Center in St. Paul March 1-3. Go Fighting Saints!

With the winter sports season coming to a close, the St. Francis High School (SFHS) wrestling team has a lot to be proud of. The team competed in the Mississippi 8 conference tournament to determine All-Conference and Honorable Mention honors. Mitchell Wilson, 145 pounds, and Cole Kirpach, 170 pounds, won their respective weight classes earning them All-Conference awards. Earning second place in All-Conference were Tanner Kunshier, 126 pounds, Luke Lipinski, 160 pounds, and Joey Lipinski, 182 pounds. Receiving All-Conference Honorable Mention were Zach Bonte, 132 pounds, in fourth place and in fifth place were Josh Martin, 106 pounds, Mike Wasche, 138 pounds and TJ Hoglund, 152 pounds. St. Francis Middle School (SFMS) wrestling also competed in their own conference tournament at the end of their season, with a total of 20 wrestlers placing in the top seven of their weight classes. Leading the way were Riley Erickson, Thomas Green, James Lehn and Elijah Jones, all taking home individual conference titles. Great job to all of the SFMS wrestlers and coaches this year. SFHS wrestling closed out their conference duals with victories against North Branch (54-24) and Princeton (48-22). The Fighting Saints clinched the east division of the conference, which setup a rematch of last year’s conference title match against St. Michael-Albertville High School. Saints wrestler Michael Wasche gets the fall against Unfortunately, the Fighting Saints came St. Michael-Albertville in the conference title match. up short against the Knights 21-42 and  SUBMITTED PHOTO

High school students talk about being a student athlete KYLE WATERWORTH


On February 1, St. Francis High School (SFHS) boys and girls varsity basketball players visited St. Francis Elementary School (SFES) students and spoke to them about what it means to be a student athlete. The main topic was the importance of the time management and academics to be a successful athlete. SFHS students emphasized academics always come first. They also discussed being a team player, dealing with St. Francis High School girls basketball players (L-R) Mae season successes and disappointments. Grahek and Danah Oscan, shot hoops with students at After taking some questions, the SFHS St. Francis Elementary School. PHOTO BY KYLE WATERWORTH and SFES students shot basketballs in Anna Schultz, Gracie Eastman and Emma the gym. Participating in this event were boys basketball Goldeman. SFHS girls basketball competed in the 8AAAA players Blake Kulsrud, Glenn Gbakoyah, section tournament on February 27 and SFHS Christian Bednarz, Zach Wald and Wyatt boys basketball team will play in the 8AAAA Schroeder. High school girls basketball players section tournament on Wednesday, March 7. participating were Danah Ocsan,


St. Francis Elementary School students and teachers welcomed St. Francis High School basketball players to their school! St. Francis High School basketball players read a story in class about the life of Michael Jordan. They also talked with the elementary students about perseverance, dedication, responsibility and being part of a team.


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MARCH 2018


Life Mental health professional receives Healthy Body, Healthy Mind award CAROL HENDRICKS


Larry Weight was recognized on January 18 by the Mental Wellness Campaign for Anoka County for his 51 years of service as a mental health professional to adults, children and families. Donna McDonald, campaign cochairwoman, presented the award. Weight spent almost his entire career working in Anoka County, first at Volunteers of America (VOA) at the Bar None Residential Treatment Center, then at Lord of Life Church in Ramsey and other faith communities. He retired from VOA in 2016. Examples of his efforts include developing a program for autistic children with aggressive and severe self-harming behaviors, and another program for juvenile offenders with mental health conditions who were facing incarceration in adult facilities. In the faith communities, Weight


was instrumental in developing the Celebrate Recovery Model, a program for persons struggling with addiction and mental health issues. He serves on the board of directors for the program at Lord of Life Church. Each year, the Mental Wellness Campaign for Anoka County selects an award recipient from the community who reflects their values and mission of promoting community awareness, understanding and acceptance e of mental health and wellness. The Mental Wellness Campaign has trained facilitators who are now available to work with businesses, nonprofits or faith communities in Anoka County. Details are at

Birth Announcement Christopher Allan Moritz was born on February 18, 2018 at Cambridge Medical Center. He weighed 8 pounds. Proud parents are David and Becky Moritz of St. Francis. Christopher is welcomed by siblings Elizabeth and Carl.




Opp Family at Chiropractic

Dr. Katie Hofkes & Jean Hartley present…

Benefits of Chiropractic care and midwifery during pregnancy, labor and delivery. Dr. Katie Hofkes (a trained and certified doctor in Webster technique) and Jean Hartley (owner and founder of Wildflower Midwifery: specializing in home and water births), will be talking about the benefits of chiropractic care and midwifery during pregnancy, labor and delivery. Learn how they can each help provide an environment for safer, easier deliveries, as well as provide the necessary physical and emotional support during this journey. Together, doulas, midwives and Webster-certified chiropractors provide key elements that contribute to reaching the ultimate goal of a healthy baby and momma.

Thursday, March 15 6:30-8:00 p.m. 23671 St. Francis Blvd. NW St. Francis


Anoka Technical College Emergency Medical Services (EMS) program offers information session FIA PRPIC


Anoka Technical College Emergency Medical Services (EMS) certificate program is offering information sessions to help prospective students and the community better understand what it takes to become an emergency services technician. Information sessions are scheduled

for Friday, March 23, noon, Room 250 and Monday, April 30, 2:00 p.m., Room 154. The EMS program at Anoka Tech offers two certificates. To sign up for an upcoming information session, visit the college website at or go directly to form/SV_0eSI2Ao3kBRvoJD.

Emily Fridlund at Ramsey County Library DAVID KATZ


Club Book, a program of the Metropolitan Library Service Agency (MELSA), is thrilled to announce an exciting new season of author events hosted in public libraries throughout the Twin Cities. Emily Fridlund will be speaking on writing and reading from her new novel, History of Wolves, at the Roseville Public Library on Monday, May 7. Fridlund’s opus, History of Wolves straddles the line between thriller and coming-of-age novel. Fridlund’s teenage protagonist, Linda, is an outsider in her close-knit Northwoods community. She finally finds a sense of belonging babysitting for the eccentric Gardner family, but the role comes with expectations and secrets she is ill equipped to handle. History of Wolves shortlisted Fridlund for the 2017 Man Booker Prize. Before and after its release, the book won a host of other honors besides. It is a number one Indie Next List, Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers Selection, New York Times Editors’ Choice and a USA Today Notable Book. National Public Radio notes, “Fridlund does a remarkable job transcending genres without sacrificing

the suspense that builds steadily in the book… It is as beautiful and as icy as the Minnesota woods where it’s set, and with this being her first book, Fridlund has already proven herself to be a singular talent.” All Club Book events are free and open to the public. Seating is first come, first served. Doors open 45 minutes in advance of each program, and author’s books will be available for sale and signing. For those unable to attend, podcasts of the programs will be available within a few days of each Club Book event.

Emily Fridlund will be speaking about History of Wolves at Roseville Public Library on Monday, May 7 at 7:00 p.m.

Our Saviour’s

Offering 2, 3 & 4 extended day and kindergarten readiness class options.



Register now for the 2018-19 school year!

Top rated Christian preschool!

For registration information, please contact Michelle Bauer, Preschool Director, by phone 763-434-6117 ext. 123 or visit under Preschool.

Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church • 19001 Jackson Street NE • East Bethel


MARCH 2018

Pet Corner


Question How often should I have my dog and cat groomed? Answer It depends on how long their coat is, if they have any skin conditions that are helped by regular shampooing, if their lifestyle is such that they get dirty frequently and how much time you have to do grooming at home. Labrador Retrievers, one of the very popular breeds in Minnesota, don’t require much regular grooming other than nail trimming since their coat is short and doesn’t usually become tangled. If your Labrador Retriever likes water, their coat will become cleaner just from swimming. One of the other popular breeds, Golden Retrievers, are very different in grooming needs since many of them have such a long coat and parts tangle easily, like behind the ears and rear legs.


Many breeds are expected to need regular grooming such as: Poodles, Cocker Spaniels, Shih Tzus, Lhasa Apsos and Schnauzers. Depending on how much brushing you’re willing to do between grooming appointments, these dogs usually need to see a groomer every 8-12 weeks. Catch tangles early and comb them out—some dogs’ coats become so matted that the groomer can do nothing more than shave off all the hair. Matted hair tugs at the skin and is uncomfortable, and regularly scheduled grooming usually costs less than the time it takes to completely shave off a matted coat. Long-haired cats also often need help taking care of their coat with regular brushing or combing. Start right after you bring your long-haired cat home and work in small time increments to get them accustomed to sitting still for brushing or combing. Give cat treats or part of their regular food allotment to keep them happy. Most cats eventually enjoy the brushing and seek it out. If not, many groomers will work on cats. Many cat owners have their long-haired cats shaved for the summer, allowing the cat to be cooler during our warmest months. Don’t forget about toenails! Long nails on dogs can become caught in carpeting and torn. Long nails on old dogs seem to make walking a bit uncomfortable. They also grow longer faster since old dogs don’t exercise as much which helps to wear the nails

2018 Goal 751


74 Tons

Recycled in January St. Francis exceeded its 2017 recycling goal by 124 tons. Recycling is now easier with simple sort recycling. You no longer need to sort items. Just place them all in the large roll-off container provided by your hauler.

Holiday Lights & Cell Phone Recycling! Drop off your unwanted holiday lights and cell phones at the Public Works & Police Department during normal business hours Monday through Friday, 6:00 a.m.-4:30 p.m. 4058 St. Francis Blvd. NW St. Francis, MN 55070

down naturally. Cat toenails can be easily trimmed with a human fingernail or toenail clipper which decreases the

amount of damage they can do to furniture. If you need help learning how to trim your dog or cat’s toenails, ask


your veterinarian, veterinary technician or groomer.

Pet hair

everywhere? Call 763-753-6336 today, to make a grooming appointment.

19035 Lake George Boulevard NW Oak Grove, MN 55303 Amy Morgan, D.V.M. Lisa Johnson, D.V.M. Dawn Price, D.V.M. Kaija Youngner, D.V.M.Melissa Powers, D.V.M.

June 3-5, 2016


MARCH 2018


St. Francis High School Snow Week in pictures

Recess at Cedar Creek Community School KARA LOFGREN


Cedar Creek Community School (CCCS) uses Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) strategies to help students be respectful, be responsible and be safe at recess. Students learn the expectations on the playground by taking turns and sharing the equipment, using positive language, establishing rules of the game before it starts and follow them throughout. Other expectations include lining up at the first bell, reporting problems and injuries to the nearest adult, dressing for the weather and keeping things on the ground that are on the ground, such as snow and ice. We have had multiple days of indoor noon already this year but the students are still enjoying that time. At recess students go to centers in various classrooms to play board games, seven-up heads-up, Just Dance, or color and craft.

St. Francis High School students glammed-up for Snow Ball to celebrate Snow Week February 1. Olyvia Lindeland reminisced about summer with her outfit and Corbin Donner emulated his favorite team, the Minnesota Vikings.  PHOTO BY KATRINNA DODGE

2018 Snow Week Royalty were Leah Hutar and Mackenzie Doyle. Hutar and Doyle were crowned during the exhilarating pep fest on February 2, which celebrated the completion of a week of festivities. Other Snow Week royalty nominations were Reese Kaehler, Blake Kulsrud, Chase Nelson and Layne Sabby for king; Summer Olson, Sarah Provost, Lily Strecker and Destiny Yantes for queen.  PHOTO BY KATRINNA DODGE

In February, Kara Lofgren took third through fifthgrade students snow shoeing once a week as a positive incentive reward.  SUBMITTED PHOTO

American Indian Education Parent Committee Meeting Tuesday, March 13 • 5:00 p.m. St. Francis High School Room C-204

St. Francis High School students cozied up on Take a Nap Tuesday, January 30, during Snow Week. Pictured right (L-R) Lillie Landrum and Terra Lindberg were happy to come to school in pajamas and a blanket. 

If you are a parent, guardian or foster parent of an American Indian student in St. Francis Area Schools and would like to be part of the American Indian Education Parent Committee, you are encouraged to attend. For more information, please contact Carline Sargent at 763-213-1575 or email


Expires 3/31/18


EXPRESS GASOLINES Per Gallon All Grades of Gas

Expires 3/31/18

Valid on cash transactions only, must pay inside St. Francis County Market. Not good with other offers. Limit one per visit.


EXPRESS GASOLINES Per Gallon All Grades of Gas

Valid on cash transactions only, must pay inside St. Francis County Market. Not good with other offers. Limit one per visit. 23122 St. Francis Boulevard NW St. Francis 763-753-3334 OPEN SEVEN DAYS A WEEK Monday-Saturday 5:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m. Sunday 6:00 a.m.-11:00 p.m.

So many reasons to shop at County Market Express‌ deals on coffee, soda, donuts and more!

The Courier - March 2018  
The Courier - March 2018  

Publication of St. Francis Area Schools, Minnesota