Briefs: St. Croix River rises sharply after days of rain

  • Updated: May 3, 2014 - 5:28 PM
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In recognition of Arbor Day, members of Girl Scout Troop 52932 planted a tree in Garden Boulevard Park in Oakdale late last month.

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The St. Croix River at Stillwater rose 3 feet after last week’s deluge of rain, stopping just short of minor flood stage.

Projections by the National Weather Service showed the river cresting at 685.5 feet above sea level this weekend and staying at that level into Tuesday. Minor flood stage begins at 687 feet.

Shaun Sanders, who heads Stillwater’s public works department, said workers have done minor flood control work at the south end of Lowell Park. However, he didn’t expect having to take further action.

Slow no-wake boating restrictions remained in effect on the river to prevent shoreline damage. The river level was nearing the traffic deck of the Stillwater Lift Bridge.

The St. Croix, having dozens of tributaries, typically rises each spring during extended rainfall.

Woodbury

Youth bureau award recognizes Schulte

Youth Service Bureau staff annually recognize a colleague who demonstrates the spirit of the agency’s mission. This year’s award was presented to Vanessa Schulte, community justice program coordinator in the Woodbury office.

“Vanessa is the first two-time winner of the Spirit of the Mission Award,” said program director Michael Huntley. “We were proud to see her colleagues recognize her for her time and commitment.”

Schulte joined the agency in 2007 and leads early intervention programs for youth, including educational classes, community work service programs, Teen Intervene, and restorative justice alternatives.

Former State Farm campus has new name

The 100-acre former State Farm campus has a new name: City Place.

“The name City Place articulates our original vision of bringing an urban development to this prime suburban location,” said Juan DeAngulo, managing principal with Elion Partners. The Florida-based real estate investment and development firm is under contract to buy the 700,000-square-foot facility and redevelop it to include a luxury hotel, a grocery, medical and office space, shops and restaurants.

Last month, the firm submitted a development application which must be approved by the city before ground can be broken, officials said.

The site has been vacant since the insurance giant moved its headquarters to Lincoln, Neb., in 2004.

St. Croix region

Outdoors columnist to speak at banquet

Star Tribune outdoors writer Dennis Anderson will be the keynote speaker at the St. Croix River Association Spring Gathering on Tuesday, May 6. His talk will focus on protecting the St. Croix River.

There also will be opportunities for an interpretive hike, and a St. Croix Stewardship Award will be presented.

Anderson has been a Star Tribune columnist since 1993, often writing about the St. Croix and Namekagon rivers.

“Dennis knows the river and its conservation challenges well,” said Deb Ryun, St. Croix River Association executive director.

The organization recently completed a project involving a $500,000 Minnesota Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment grant that led to a $1,035,592 investment in pollution reduction projects.

The event will be held at Camp St. Croix, 532 County Road F, Hudson, Wis. The optional hike begins at 4 p.m., a business meeting at 5 p.m., a social at 5:30 p.m. and the dinner and address at 6 p.m.

Stillwater

Paddleboat tours show bridge project

People soon can view St. Croix River bridge construction up close from a St. Croix Boat and Packet paddleboat. The first tour will take place May 31.

“We know the public is quite interested in watching construction unfold, but safe access points to view it close-up from shore simply don’t exist,” said Jon Chiglo, the bridge project director.

An engineer from Minnesota or Wisconsin will discuss the work, which will include building progress and 2014 construction plans. The bridge will open by fall 2016.

Saturday tours will take place from 10-11:30 a.m. and Wednesday tours from 4-5:30 p.m. Events are tentatively scheduled for the following dates after the first tour: June 11, June 21, July 9, July 26, Aug. 13, Aug. 23, Sept. 10, Sept 27.

Go to www.stillwaterriverboats.com for reservation information and more details. Tickets are $10 for adults and $6 for children ages 4 to 12.

Sunday event banners Beyond Yellow Ribbon

A free noon to 3 p.m. event Sunday, May 4, at the Washington County Historic Courthouse is planned to raise awareness of Beyond the Yellow Ribbon.

The courthouse is at the intersection of Third and Pine streets in Stillwater.

Military service members, veterans, police officers, fire fighters, the Sheriff’s Office Mounted Patrol and Buzz the Stillwater Police Department K9 will be available.

Care packages for the troops will be gathered, and children can make cards, draw pictures, or write letters to the troops.

Forest Lake

City cleanup includes discount for residents

Forest Lake’s citywide cleanup will take place May 5-10. Residents will receive a 20 percent discount off regular yard prices for all items brought to SRC Inc. recycling center at 6320 E. Viking Blvd. in Wyoming, Minn. The discount includes electronics and appliances. To receive the discount, bring donations to SRC during regular open gate hours and show a valid photo ID that proves Forest Lake residence.

Oakdale

May 4 service honors fallen officers

The 32nd annual Law Enforcement Memorial Association Ecumenical Service will be hosted by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office on Sunday, May 4, at 2 p.m. at Guardian Angels Church, 8260 4th St. N., Oakdale.

The service honors Minnesota’s fallen law enforcement officers from 1874 to the present. The keynote speaker will be retired Washington County Sgt. Richard Peterson, a close friend of slain St. Paul police officer Tim Jones. Woodbury Police Chief Lee Vague and his son Grant will provide music. State Public Safety Commissioner Mona Dohman and Sheriff William Hutton also will speak.

Washington County

Deputies, sergeants enter 2-year contract

The Washington County Board approved a labor agreement with Law Enforcement Labor Services at its April 22 meeting. The contract covers the Sheriff’s Office deputies and sergeants.

The two-year contract is effective through Dec. 31, 2015. The employees will receive a 2 percent general adjustment effective Jan. 1, 2014, and 2015. The night differential increases for 2014 and 2015 from 75 cents an hour to 85 cents. The contract also has provisions for what portion of health insurance premiums employees will pay.

Collection days for waste, electronics

The county will sponsor several hazardous waste and electronics collection events over the next few months for residents, but not for businesses.

Paper shredding will also be offered at the events, which are set for May 17 in Stillwater (at the Lily Lake Ice Arena, 1208 S. Greeley St.), May 31 and Sept. 13 and 20 in Forest Lake (Washington County Transit Center, 19955 Forest Road N.) and Oct. 4 in Hugo (Public Works Building, 6900 137th St. N.). To accommodate everyone, officials said they accept no more than four boxes per customer.

The county will also host two dedicated paper shredding days for people looking to dispose of sensitive materials at the county Environmental Center, 4039 Cottage Grove Drive in Woodbury. Those dates will be July 11 and Oct. 10.

Kevin Giles and Libor Jany

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