The last major feature promised as part of a glitzy expansion of the Bielenberg Sports Center in Woodbury is arriving this spring.

Madison’s Place, a 16,000-square-foot inclusive playground, will celebrate its opening at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 4.

The $22 million Bielenberg project opened in 2014, but it experienced hiccups in the completion of some of its anticipated features. Among them was the playground, which lagged in the $830,000 fundraising needed to complete it.

The playground offers shady play decks, a zip line, swings, sensory play equipment and ramps for wheelchair access. A splash pad operates nearby.

It honors Madison Millington, the 2-year-old daughter of David and Dana Millington, who died in 2004 of complications from spinal muscular atrophy.

In a statement, Dana Millington praised “our generous donors and community,” who he said ensured that “we’re finally able to see our dream become a reality.”

David Peterson

Washington County

Library launches summer reading program

The Washington County Library system kicks off “Bookawocky,” its summer reading program, on June 4. The program’s activities will include visits by magicians, musicians, scientists, comedians, animals and insects.

The library also is hosting special story times, StoryStrolls at local parks, all-day events, interactive programs based on popular books and games, and art and music classes.

“We want kids to read over the summer, but we also know that literacy is about so much more than just reading,” said Dawn LaBrosse, the library’s youth services coordinator. “It’s about keeping their minds active over the summer so they are ready to start school again in the fall without any setbacks in learning.”

The program runs through Aug. 6.

All activities are free and open to the public.

For additional information, including a complete schedule of summer events, visit a Washington County library, call 651-731-1320 or go to

Kevin Giles

Ramsey County

County seeks 2,000 paid election judges

Ramsey County is looking for 2,000 people to be election judges in August and November.

The judges will be needed for the primary election on Aug. 9 and the general election on Nov. 8.

Judges must be eligible voters who can read, write and speak English. Training will be provided.

They will be paid $150 for a full day’s work. Shifts start at 6 a.m. and end at 9 p.m., with breaks throughout the day.

For more information, e-mail or call 651-266-2171.

David Peterson

Ham Lake

July 4th fireworks moved to July 2nd

Ham Lake’s annual fireworks display and Independence Day celebration have been moved to Saturday, July 2, this year, rather than the traditional July 4th.

This year’s festivities start at 4 p.m. at Lions Park, 1204 157th Av. NE., and will include bingo and food from Route 65 Pub & Grub.

The Ham Lake Area Chamber of Commerce is sponsoring this year’s events.

Shannon Prather


Society to hold event on tending native plants

The St. Paul Audubon Society is hosting a Landscape Revival focused on plants native to Minnesota on Saturday, June 4.

Conservation organizations will be on hand to help guide shoppers on which plants to buy and how to grow them. The groups tout benefits for wildlife habitat, pollinators and water quality.

The event will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Cub Foods Community Pavilion, at the corner of Larpenteur Avenue and Fernwood Street.