Stillwater has a new post office, or at least a post office in a new location.
New quarters in the Croix Center, a block west of the old building, will open soon. The old post office eventually will be demolished to make room for a Trinity Lutheran Church expansion.
"It's fabulous. I think that the new post office is going to be great for the community," said Dan Poffenberger, lead pastor at the 4,000-member church. Trinity owns both properties along Myrtle Street near Stillwater City Hall.
The new location will have about 100 parking spaces -- about 10 times more than the old post office, where drivers have jockeyed for spots and traffic jams occur at outdoor mailboxes.
The Croix Center's many tenants over the years have included St. Croix Preparatory Academy -- now in a big new school on Stagecoach Trail North in Stillwater -- and before that, a National T grocery store. Work on the interior eliminated a maze of smaller rooms and the exterior will be restored to much of its forgotten prominence.
HAF Architects LLC redesigned the building. About 5,000 square feet of additional space will be available for one or two offices or retail businesses, Poffenberger said.
Residents, business owners, boaters and motorists can attend an open house to learn about the Stillwater Lift Bridge repair project, scheduled to begin Sept. 10 and end in December.
The project will repair steel connections, electrical systems and concrete surfaces. A portion of the bridge will be painted.
The open house will be Thursday from 4 to 7 p.m. at Stillwater City Hall, 216 4th St. N. More information can be found at www.dot.state.mn.us/metro/projects/liftbridge/index.html.Auditions scheduled for July talent show
Auditions will be held this month for the 11th annual Amateur Talent Show featured at the Ice Cream Social on July 18 at the Washington County Historic Courthouse.
The tryouts will be at the courthouse, at 101 W. Pine St. in Stillwater, on June 26 and 27 for all categories. There is no band category this year. Registration begins at 6 p.m. and auditions start at 7 p.m.
Participants must audition in their performance attire and bring their own accompaniment, iPod or CD. A CD player, iPod cable, microphone and full-size keyboard will be provided. Because this is a family show, acts must be appropriate for all ages.
The Ice Cream Social begins at 4:30 p.m. July 18 and the Talent Show begins at 6 p.m. The event also features a petting zoo, children's games and activities, food, penny candy and 25-cent root beer floats.
Join a celebration of logging history on the St. Croix River on June 23 from noon to 3 p.m. at the Boom Site just north of Stillwater.
Activities will include music, food vendors, a log-rolling exhibition, a geocaching presentation by Diane Hedin of the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, a logging history talk by Bob Goodman of the Washington County Historical Society, a geology talk by Bob Downs, and artist presentation by painter Kami Polzin.
Sponsors are the DNR, National Park Service, Friends of the St. Croix Boom Site and Friends of Washington County.
Students from Mahtomedi Public Schools have been named recipients of 2012 Wildwood Artist Series Summer Performing Arts Camp Scholarships. The Wildwood Artist Series provides funds for performing arts (music, drama, dance) students to attend a summer performing arts camp or participate in a performing arts activity. Recipients are Jack Scharrer, Zoe Carver, Nicholas Kalkman, Sara Tako, Natalie Alper-Leroux, Jacqueline Lenarz, Finn Chalmers, Mitchell Evans, Katie Hinseth, Jennifer Schmit, Sarah Becker and Madine Cadalbert.
Students at the three high schools in the South Washington County district could pay $25 more per activity during the 2012-13 school year under a proposal being considered by the school board. The board is expected to act on the measure June 28.
Students who participate in sports sanctioned by the Minnesota State High School League would pay fees in the range of $155 to $180. Activities such as speech and drama would cost $120 to $125. No fee increase would be assessed for activities such as working on the newspaper or yearbook.
This would be the first fee increase since 2003, said Keith Ryskoski, assistant superintendent for secondary education. The increase is tied to a $1.2 million reduction in the district's budget, resulting in a $100,000 cut to athletics and activities.
Ryskoski said raising fees is seen as preferable to dropping activities or cutting services such as transportation. Even with the increase, participation fees would be below those of most other schools in the Suburban East Conference, Ryskoski said. Woodbury, Park and East Ridge high schools are members of the conference.Finance director lauded by Chamber
The Cottage Grove Chamber of Commerce named Aaron Bushberger, finance director at South Washington County, as its Business Person of the Year for 2011. He was honored during the Chamber's annual spring gala on May 18. Bushberger serves as Chamber's treasurer and Education Committee chairman. He has worked for South Washington County schools for seven years.
TIM HARLOW AND Kevin Giles