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Pat Pheifer

Reporter | South Metro
phone: 952-746-3284
Pat Pheifer covers cities of the south Twin Cities metro area.
Recent content from Pat Pheifer
Bug spray bound for Haiti to fight Zika virus turned away at MSP

Bug spray bound for Haiti to fight Zika virus turned away at MSP

A group of volunteers sought to bring mosquito spray to expectant mothers.
State roads and schools reopen, while city impound lots fill up

State roads and schools reopen, while city impound lots fill up

The metro's first big snow snarled traffic and delighted winter-lovers. A little more might be on the way Thursday.

January deaths on state roads 3 times higher than year ago

January was more deadly than usual on Minnesota roads, with nearly three times as many deaths in 2016 as last year, including two in the last two days of the month.
St. Paul Central mourns 2 more student deaths

St. Paul Central mourns 2 more student deaths

Two students at St. Paul Central High School died this week, school officials said Thursday. A third student died earlier this month. Foul play is…

MnDOT suspends work on Zip Rail to Rochester project

The plan for a publicly funded high-speed rail line between Rochester and the Twin Cities has been shelved because of lack of money and political…

Shots fired outside Shakopee Wal-Mart store; no one hurt

A Craigslist transaction turned into an attempted robbery and led to shots being fired Tuesday evening outside the Shakopee Wal-Mart, police said. The incident took…
Minnesotans talk about the East Coast super-blizzard

Minnesotans talk about the East Coast super-blizzard

Former Minnesota residents give New Yorkers some weather tips.

St. Paul Central High School student taken to hospital Monday dies

The St. Paul Central High School student who was taken to the hospital Monday after a medical emergency has died, school officials said Wednesday. Central…
Meeting on St. Paul charter's gender policy brings silent protest

Meeting on St. Paul charter's gender policy brings silent protest

Minnesota Family Council discusses issues over a charter school's plan for inclusion.
Windchill advisory until noon; frigid temps to linger

Windchill advisory until noon; frigid temps to linger

The air will warm into the teens Wednesday afternoon and into the 20s Thursday and Friday before another cold front descends Saturday.
At the stadium: 'No such thing as bad weather. Only inappropriate clothing'

At the stadium: 'No such thing as bad weather. Only inappropriate clothing'

Kara Buckner of St. Louis Park wore two pairs of long underwear, two pairs of snow pants, six layers on top, ski goggles and mukluks she'd had overnighted to her.
Longtime gay activist and publisher of GLC Voice Tim Campbell dies at 76

Longtime gay activist and publisher of GLC Voice Tim Campbell dies at 76

Often divisive, he steadfastly pushed for gay rights.

Potters create bowls for a cause at Eagan Art House

  Local potters will come together next week at the Eagan Art House to make hundreds of beautiful bowls, each its own distinctive piece of…
Obituary: Monique Schwartzberg, 88, traveled the world

Obituary: Monique Schwartzberg, 88, traveled the world

To say that Monique Ribaux Schwartzberg was an independent and adventurous woman would be an understatement. Her careers and travel took her to remote parts…

Armful of Love makes holidays happier for Dakota County families

  It will be a much happier Christmas for more than 1,000 families in Dakota County, thanks to 360 Communities’ Armful of Love program. It’s…

Apple Valley Community Center has no fire alarm system

A plan to replace or improve the alert system is in the works, though.
Lakeville South students return, mourn two of their own after fatal crash

Lakeville South students return, mourn two of their own after fatal crash

Lakeville's police chief said he has had no previous reports of students playing "Nerf wars" while driving.
Case of young informant found dead gets national attention on '60 Minutes'

Case of young informant found dead gets national attention on '60 Minutes'

Dead student's mother seeks new information and reform in how informants are recruited.
Warm autumn weather brought more complaints about airport noise in Eagan

Warm autumn weather brought more complaints about airport noise in Eagan

The chilly and windy weather of the past week means some relief for people in Eagan and other parts of the south metro from the…
As Black Lives Matter meets, it posts shooting scene video

As Black Lives Matter meets, it posts shooting scene video

Family says the funeral for Jamar Clark will be held Wednesday in Minneapolis.
Eagan spending $12M to clean up algae-choked lakes

Eagan spending $12M to clean up algae-choked lakes

Working with the MPCA, the city plans to spend more than $12M to improve water quality in the algae-choked lakes.
In Minneapolis, a march and memorial for those slain in Paris

In Minneapolis, a march and memorial for those slain in Paris

Most of the marchers have a friend, relative or some emotional connection to France that drew them to the memorial walk down Hennepin Avenue Sunday .
Wis. derailment spilled 18,000 gallons of ethanol into Mississippi

Wis. derailment spilled 18,000 gallons of ethanol into Mississippi

Of 32 BNSF train cars that hurtled off the tracks near Alma, Wis., on Saturday, five of them broke open and spilled at least 18,000…
Lakeville gets pet oxygen masks as part of Project Breathe

Lakeville gets pet oxygen masks as part of Project Breathe

A resident, new to Lakeville, brought the masks to the attention of Fire Chief Mike Meyer and Assistant Chief Charles Smith.
Brian Fitch appeals conviction for killing Mendota Heights police officer

Brian Fitch appeals conviction for killing Mendota Heights police officer

The appeal filed Tuesday asks for two new trials.
Obituary: Sculptor Anthony Caponi was Macalester educator, mentor, art park visionary

Obituary: Sculptor Anthony Caponi was Macalester educator, mentor, art park visionary

Anthony Caponi, an artist, poet, professor and sculptor who envisioned and created the Caponi Art Park and Learning Center in Eagan, died Friday at his…
Oven suspected in North Side fire that killed 3 children

Oven suspected in North Side fire that killed 3 children

Fire may have been caused by an oven that was left turned on and unattended. The landlord said the heat not yet turned on for the new tenants.

South metro news: Deer hunt is slated for Spring Lake Regional Park in October

A special deer hunt in Spring Lake Regional Park will be held Monday to Wednesday and Oct. 26 to 28. The Three Rivers Park District…

South news briefs: Lebanon Hills park hosts mountain bike festival

Mountain bikers of all skill levels can participate in the third annual Wild Ride Mountain Bike Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Oct.…
Metro Transit diverts Green Line traffic for St. Paul protest

Metro Transit diverts Green Line traffic for St. Paul protest

Buses replaced light-rail trains for several hours in the area of St. Paul where a Black Lives Matter protest was held Sunday.
Sept. 20: Black Lives Matter protest diverts light-rail traffic to buses

Sept. 20: Black Lives Matter protest diverts light-rail traffic to buses

Metro Transit says that buses are replacing Green Line trains between the Snelling Avenue and Capitol/Rice Street stations. Staff will be on hand to direct riders.

Some cry foul over Burnsville's proactive code enforcement

New approach to code enforcement has led to more citations, for which residents may face court or jail.
90-year-old who fatally shot son in Maplewood said to have Alzheimer's

90-year-old who fatally shot son in Maplewood said to have Alzheimer's

They shared Maplewood home; victim had spoken of his dad's dementia.
Minnesota Family Council plans to protest Planned Parenthood outside governor's residence

Minnesota Family Council plans to protest Planned Parenthood outside governor's residence

Family Council wants action against Planned Parenthood.
With storms forecast tonight, State Fair plans for bad weather

With storms forecast tonight, State Fair plans for bad weather

The fair's 140 buildings include five designated as storm shelters.

South arts briefs: Auditions ahead for 'Christmas Belles'

Expressions Community Theater will hold auditions for the play “Christmas Belles” at the Lakeville Area Arts Center from 6 to 8 p.m. Aug. 31 and…
Dakota County briefs: Ride the MVTA bus to the Minnesota State Fair

Dakota County briefs: Ride the MVTA bus to the Minnesota State Fair

The Minnesota Valley Transit Authority will have special buses running between the south metro and the Minnesota State Fair from Aug. 27 to Sept. 7.…
Dakota County arts briefs: Ames Center sets fall lineup

Dakota County arts briefs: Ames Center sets fall lineup

The Ames Center in Burnsville’s Heart of the City has announced its fall lineup of musicians and performers. For more information, visit www.ames-center.com or call…
Dakota County news briefs: Burnsville choir holding reunion, concert

Dakota County news briefs: Burnsville choir holding reunion, concert

Choir alumni from Burnsville High School classes of 1980 to 1983 will hold a reunion and concert Friday and Saturday. Rehearsals will be Friday evening…
Bikers wrap up 2,100-mile ride to erase stigma of mental illness

Bikers wrap up 2,100-mile ride to erase stigma of mental illness

A dozen or so friends and supporters climbed on their bicycles and accompanied Lakeville banker Tom Mork and his three companions Thursday on the final leg of their 2,100 mile ride to raise awareness of mental illness and raise money for the Minnesota chapter of the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI).
Dakota County news briefs: 'Fill the backpack' campaign underway in South St. Paul

Dakota County news briefs: 'Fill the backpack' campaign underway in South St. Paul

The South St. Paul Mayor’s Youth Task Force began its “Fill the Backpack” campaign last week, and is asking neighborhoods, groups and residents to buy…

Dakota County arts briefs: For kids and parents, a chance to make Raku pottery

Children 6 and older and their parents can create a Raku vase at a workshop from 5 to 9 p.m. Thursday at the Lakeville Area…
Burnsville's leaky, aging Bicentennial Garden fountain to get a facelift

Burnsville's leaky, aging Bicentennial Garden fountain to get a facelift

The Bicentennial Garden fountain was the city's first piece of public art.
Apple Valley readies for growth with expanded water treatment facility

Apple Valley readies for growth with expanded water treatment facility

The expanded treatment plant will allow the city to keep up with growth, officials said.
DNR shut down walleye fishing on Lake Mille Lacs on Monday

DNR shut down walleye fishing on Lake Mille Lacs on Monday

In historic first, walleye fishing on Mille Lacs ended midseason as limits were surpassed.
Residents fight back after Burnsville says their carports have to go

Residents fight back after Burnsville says their carports have to go

An attorney for residents of Rambush Estates says the city shouldn't issue code violations in mobile home park.
Minnehaha Creek cleanup yields 4 tons of trash

Minnehaha Creek cleanup yields 4 tons of trash

About 1,600 people participated in the ninth annual cleanup around Minnehaha Creek.

Arts briefs: Apple Valley Live! Theater Company to perform 'Twelfth Night' at Kelley Park

Apple Valley Live! Theatre Company will present “Twelfth Night” through its “Uponor Shakespeare Under The Stars” series starting Saturday. The shows from 7 to 9…

Briefs: Hanifl Family Wild Woods nature play area opens at Minnesota Zoo

The grand opening is Sunday for the Minnesota Zoo’s Hanifl Family Wild Woods, a 30,000-square-foot nature-based play area adjacent to the zoo’s Conservation Carousel. The…
Downed trees in the thousands after storm whips Twin Cities

Downed trees in the thousands after storm whips Twin Cities

Traffic lights and power were out in some metro area spots.

Panhandlers are bringing their heart-rending signs to the south metro

Apple Valley officials discussed adding a law to stop the practice.
Interim archbishop gives 1st mass since taking over in Twin Cities

Interim archbishop gives 1st mass since taking over in Twin Cities

Archbishop Hebda mingles with the faithful in his debut leading worship.
MN Zoo director refocused mission on conservation, dealt with budget woes

MN Zoo director refocused mission on conservation, dealt with budget woes

Leaving for Houston, director says Minnesota Zoo "is on a great course."
South news briefs: Hastings launches Zagster bicycle sharing program

South news briefs: Hastings launches Zagster bicycle sharing program

The Zagster bicycle-sharing program launched Monday in Hastings, offering the public a chance to ride a bike anywhere and anytime — mostly for free. Users…

South metro arts briefs: Burnhaven Library offers time to share crafts, artwork

The Burnhaven Library, 1101 W. County Road 42, holds a drop-in session the second Saturday of every month to share homemade artwork and crafts. The…

All-day bus service between Burnsville, downtown Minneapolis is on track

Stretching from Burnsville to Minneapolis, Orange Line is expected to be up and running by late 2019.
Court ruling gives joyful jolt to Mpls. Pride celebration

Court ruling gives joyful jolt to Mpls. Pride celebration

Thousands — possibly hundreds of thousands — of marchers and observers, lovers and friends and supporters jammed Hennepin Avenue for the biggest Pride parade veterans can remember.
Burnsville has a superhero with special power of sustainability

Burnsville has a superhero with special power of sustainability

Videos of Burnsville's Sustainability Man explain environmental issues with a sense of humor.

Burnsville to get its first craft brewery

India pale ale will be featured at the new establishment, named Nutmeg.

Dakota County arts briefs: Scandinavian celebration is coming up

The Pleasant Hill Library will hold a Scandinavian midsummer celebration with games, songs and traditions from 10:30 to 11:15 a.m. Wednesday. The library is at…
Dakota County news briefs: Lakeville residents can weigh in on e-cigarettes

Dakota County news briefs: Lakeville residents can weigh in on e-cigarettes

Lakeville residents who want to express their opinions on the length of the mayor’s term and extending restrictions on indoor smoking to e-cigarettes can do…
Burnsville first brewpub will focus on IPA, British Colonial cuisine

Burnsville first brewpub will focus on IPA, British Colonial cuisine

India pale ale will be featured at the new establishment, named Nutmeg.
Two Minnesota men prep for a 2,100-mile bike journey to benefit mental illness

Two Minnesota men prep for a 2,100-mile bike journey to benefit mental illness

Tom Mork and Doug Anderson of Lakeville will bike 2,100 miles to raise money for NAMI.

Arts briefs: 'Wine & Designs' session coming up in Lakeville

“Acrylic Poppies” will be the subject of the latest Wine & Designs workshop from 6 to 9 p.m. Wednesday at the Lakeville Area Arts Center,…
Briefs: Scotch tasting at LeDuc Historic Estate

Briefs: Scotch tasting at LeDuc Historic Estate

A Bottom of the Barrel Scotch Tasting will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. June 19 at the LeDuc Historic Estate, 1629 Vermillion St.…

Lakeville considers changing mayor's term from 2 years to 4

If approved, the change would go into effect with the 2016 election.
Mexican consul in St. Paul strives to build links, partnerships

Mexican consul in St. Paul strives to build links, partnerships

Mexico's top official in the state has worked to build ties with local colleges. On Monday, Alberto Fierro will preside over a reception of the 10th anniversary of Consulado de Mexico in Minnesota.

Arts briefs: Apple Valley's Kelley Park music series starts June 5

The Music in Kelley Park series will begin its 2015 season Friday evening with the band Pho. Free concerts will be held each Friday except…
Briefs: Cascade Bay opening for a preview weekend

Briefs: Cascade Bay opening for a preview weekend

Cascade Bay, Eagan’s outdoor pool and fitness/entertainment center at 1360 Civic Center Dr., will be open from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday for first-time…
Burnsville uses native plant sale to encourage more of the gardens

Burnsville uses native plant sale to encourage more of the gardens

Burnsville will host the city's first Native Plant Market on Saturday.
Burnsville uses native plant sale to encourage more such gardens

Burnsville uses native plant sale to encourage more such gardens

Burnsville will host the city's first Native Plant Market on Saturday.
Cyclists attack PedalPubs with squirt guns in Minneapolis; six arrested

Cyclists attack PedalPubs with squirt guns in Minneapolis; six arrested

Two of the people-powered, 16-seat vehicles were hit Saturday in the late afternoon in the Warehouse District, said Lisa Stanplin, manager of Twin Cities PedalPubs.

Dakota County arts briefs: Hastings setting up public-art task force

The Hastings City Council recently approved plans for a grant to support public art that is free and accessible to everyone. To further that effort,…
Burnsville uses native plant sale to encourage more of the gardens

Burnsville uses native plant sale to encourage more of the gardens

Burnsville will host the city's first Native Plant Market on May 30.

900-kilometer bike trip benefits Kids 'n Kinship nonprofit

  Next week, semiretired businessman John Elder will climb onto his bicycle and set off on his 10th consecutive nine-day, 900-kilometer journey to raise money…
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