Sunday is the last day to nominate gardens and landscaping in the annual contest for Burnsville residents and businesses sponsored by the Burnsville Convention & Visitors Bureau and Cal's Market & Garden Center.

In previous years, the contest was sponsored by the city of Burnsville. This is the second year the convention and business bureau has coordinated the contest.

"This event gives us an opportunity to show our appreciation to residents and business owners who keep the community looking great,'' said Convention & Visitors Bureau Executive Director Amie Burrill. "A beautiful city makes our job of attracting visitors just that much easier."

Burnsville residents and businesses have until the end of today to nominate favorite homes, neighborhoods and Burnsville businesses that have impeccable landscaping or gardening. To qualify, nominees must be located within Burnsville city limits, be visible from the street and match criteria for the submitted category.

Nominations will be reviewed by the visitor's bureau board of directors in early July. Prizes in each category are a $100 gift card to Cal's Market & Garden Center, a $50 gift card to a Burnsville restaurant, and four tickets to the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum.

To submit a nomination, go to cfm or pick up a form at any Burnsville Convention & Visitors Bureau, Burnsville City Hall, Cal's Market and Garden Center and Jo Jo's Rise & Wine. All submissions must have a photo.

Winners will be notified by phone.


Police handled 568 cases in 2012

The Apple Valley Police investigations division investigated 568 cases in 2012, according to a department report.

They included 128 background investigations, 91 thefts, 91 financial cases, 41 criminal sexual assaults, 25 burglaries, 22 assaults and 12 robberies. In 2011, cases investigated numbered 603, and in 2010, it was 498.


Sculptures chosen for art installation

Two sculptures have been selected for installation on the Eagan Art House grounds by the end of August.

The first, "Metamorphosis," by Eagan artist Melvin Smith, is a 21-foot orange-painted metal sculpture of circles and geometric shapes designed to portray celebration and change through color, shape and what they city describes as a "framing of nature and community." It was funded through a grant from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council.

The second, "Sentience," by Minneapolis artist Marcia MacEachron, is a 6-foot steel sculpture of two intersecting oak leaves with cutouts to produce changing shadow forms surrounding the piece. It was designed to provide diverse shadows on the surrounding ground, encouraging interactive experiences. It was funded by the 2013 Parks & Recreation Park Site Fund.


Health department seeks volunteers

The Dakota County Public Health Department is seeking volunteers to participate in an emergency exercise on July 26 at Henry Sibley High School, 1897 Delaware Av., Mendota Heights.

The drill will test plans for setting up a medicine dispensing center where Dakota County residents would pick up medicine during a disease outbreak. The Public Health Department is looking to recruit 200-300 volunteers to test plans for managing the large volume of people expected in a real emergency.

Volunteers will check in at the school from 11 to 11:30 a.m. July 26 to receive a briefing about their role. The exercise ends at 2:30 p.m., and lunch will be provided.

To participate, volunteers must be at least 14 years old and must be accompanied by an adult or have a signed permission form if younger than 18.

The deadline for registering as a volunteer is July 16. To register, see and search Operation Big Box. For more information, visit the website or call 952-891-7528.


Public comment period wrapping up

The public comment period for the environmental impact study of the future development of UMore Park is continuing through July 10.

The city of Rosemount is asking the public and stakeholders to give their input on the potential impact of the project.

The UMore Park property, in Rosemount and Empire Township, could have anywhere from 25,000 to 35,000 residents and 18,000 to 24,000 jobs, depending on which of four scenarios the University of Minnesota pursues.

The project would transform the 7.8-square-mile university property into a master-planned, transit-oriented commercial and residential development that could double Rosemount's population in the next 30 to 35 years.

To view the environmental impact report, see Rosemount's website at or look at a paper copy at the Robert Trail Library or Rosemount City Hall. The city's website has a link to e-mail comments to city staff.