Former students who attended one-room rural schools will share their experiences at a round-table discussion at 7 p.m. Tuesday, June 18, at the Denmark Town Hall, 90th and Oakgreen S.

The panel includes Richard Hullander, Carroll Fuhr and Gordon Whitaker representing Valley School District 34, Bill and Fritz Kruschel, who attended nearby North Star District 59, and Valda Van Alstine, who went to Carpenter School in Ellsworth, Wis.

The program is free and open to the public. Visitors are encouraged to bring stories and photos of their own experiences in one-room schools.

The event is sponsored by Denmark Township Historical Society. The society recently completed the purchase of the Valley School, which dates from 1852, and is working to restore the building.


City approves new public works chief

After nearly 30 years, Woodbury has a new director of its Engineering and Public Works Department.

David Jessup is stepping down after guiding the planning and construction of roads, sewers and other vital infrastructure projects through the city's era of transformation and booming growth.

Klayton Eckles, the department's deputy director who has been with the city since 2006, was appointed Jessup's successor last week by the Woodbury City Council. Eckles is required to work under a 12-month probationary period in his new post. He previously worked for Mendota Heights.

Washington County

Providers honored at foster care event

Washington County recently honored its foster care providers with a recognition event at the Lake Elmo Event Center.

The county has 46 adult family providers who provide emergency, respite and ongoing placements to vulnerable adults. The county has 56 child foster care providers.

The county had 200 youth in placement during 2012 and 145 of those youth in family foster care, said County Commissioner Lisa Weik at the recognition event.

Karen and Scott Elliot of Cottage Grove were honored for 35 years of non-kin child foster care. Mary Jo and Ray Dick from Afton were honored for 30 years of foster care. Recognized for 20 years of foster care were Karla Keller of Oak Park Heights and Barb and Mike Miller of Oakdale. Ten-year honorees are: Roger Eliasen, Woodbury; Cathy and Ernie Gillman, Cottage Grove; Carol and Robert LeMere, Forest Lake; and Dawn and Richard Williams, Cottage Grove.

Recognized for five years of foster care were: Edilene Friest, Cottage Grove; Karly and Pete LePage, Woodbury; Marion and Stephan Potyondy, Woodbury; Amy and Richard Reeves, Cottage Grove; and Sohair Youssef and Mounir Marzouk, Oakdale.

Highway contract goes to Valley Paving

Valley Paving Inc. was awarded the contract for three of the 2013 pavement preservation road projects in Washington County.

The County Board approved the $1.4 million contract June 4. Valley Paving provided the lowest bid of four bids.

The 2013 pavement preservation projects include:

• County Road 13 (Radio Drive). Work includes bituminous reclamation, bituminous paving, signing and striping.

• County Road 19A (Innovation Road) in Cottage Grove. Work includes milling bituminous surface, bituminous overlay and striping.

• County Road 76 from Hwy. 95 (Manning Avenue) to County Road 21 (St. Croix Trail South). Work includes reclamation and bituminous paving.

The annual pavement preservation projects are funded with a combination of property tax levy funds, wheelage tax and state aid funding.


Arcola Mills class studies river life

Families interested in exploring more of what adds life to a river are invited to participate in a program titled "Run River Run: Discoveries Along the River." It will be held Saturday, June 22, from 10 a.m. to noon at the historic Arcola Mills site along the St. Croix River, six miles north of Stillwater.

Arcola Mills sponsors the class in coordination with PowerUp, a communitywide youth health initiative supported by the Lakeview Foundation in partnership with HealthPartners. PowerUp is designed to make the St. Croix River Valley a place where it is easy for youth to eat well and be active.

"Run River Run" features a naturalist who is also an artist and uses inspiration from the St. Croix River to create a book using objects found during this river adventure.

Marine on St. Croix artist Susie Lieber leads the program, exploring streams on the Arcola Mills site for signs of life. Registration is $25 a family.

Arcola Mills, 12905 Arcola Trail N., is east of Hwy. 95. Watch for the National Park Service road sign. To find out more information and register for the class, visit the Arcola Mills website,

Flood control work begins in Stillwater

The contractor for Stillwater's long-awaited U.S. Corps of Engineers flood control project has indicated that construction will begin in late June, the city said last week.

Work will consist of installing a storm sewer system along the west end of Lowell Park parking lots and a series of pumping manholes. Work will begin on the south end of the project at Nelson Street and proceed north.

The contractor is required to complete construction on one parking lot before working on the next. Work on the entire project will be completed by Aug. 31. The city then will begin reconstruction of parking lots from Nelson Street to Laurel Street.


Sleeping under stars at Loveland Park

In conjunction with the Great American Backyard Camp-out, Newport on the Move will be sponsoring a free family camp-out at Loveland Park on Saturday, June 22, through Sunday, June 23. Loveland Park is located on Glen Road and Century Avenue on the east side of Hwy. 61.

This event will provide an experience for all generations to connect with nature and enjoy one of the city's beautiful parks. Bring your own tents, camping gear, lawn chairs, outdoor games and food and come for a relaxed afternoon and overnight stay sharing nature with other families and friends.

There will be some planned nature activities and crafts. You may arrive any time after 2 p.m. and stay through breakfast on Sunday. If you can't spend the night, come for the afternoon and stay through the evening campfire. S'mores will be provided. To sign up, call 651-459-3066.

Kevin Giles, Jim Anderson