South news briefs: De-icing workshop coming up soon

  • November 20, 2012 - 6:39 AM


De-icing workshop coming up soon

Each teaspoon of salt that you scatter on driveways or sidewalks pollutes five gallons of water in the nearest lake, Prior Lake is warning.

To help point to ways of avoiding that, the city is inviting you to a de-icing workshop next month. The goal is to move away from salt or chemicals and toward "environment-friendly snow and ice removal."

The event takes place from 9-10:30 a.m. Dec. 1 in the Parkview Community room at Prior Lake City Hall, 4646 Dakota St. SE.

Although walk-ins are welcome, people interested in attending are asked to register by Nov. 28 by contacting Scott County's Soil and Water Conservation District at 952-492-5425 or e-mailing

Shakopee also is addressing the issue in a Web link that can be reached through this page: .cfm#tips. The link takes you to a brief discussion of the problem in which rock salt is condemned as "a highly corrosive toxin that ruins soil, contaminates groundwater and is harmful to pets."

One recommended alternative: anti-icers that can be used on outdoor surfaces before snow and ice arrive.


Gravel mining site targeted for residential development

A big mining site in Savage is nearing the stage of residential development, city officials report.

A firm called Prior Lake Aggregates operates a gravel pit near Prior Lake High School that could one day become a large development project with homes and stores, built in phases.

"The property owner has been approached by residential developers and is evaluating the cost and timing of future redevelopment, starting in the northeast corner of the site," according to a memo prepared for a citizen advisory group.

Because the cost of site preparation and other needed changes is high, the owner is seeking special state legislation allowing for tax increment financing districts in such situations. Those districts allow for financing based on the enhanced value of the development that later takes place.


'Mass emergency!' -- just for practice

Burnsville is inviting residents to check out a pair of new videos online, one of which shows a practice session responding to a "mass emergency" in the form of a chemical spill at the city's water treatment plant.

Last month, the city's police, fire and public works departments teamed up with folks from Fairview Ridges Hospital and a number of neighboring first-response agencies to practice responding to such an emergency.

The video showing what happened can be found at

Another newly available video shows a Burnsville resident getting "some much-needed care to the outside of their home -- thanks to some community support." This one is meant to address the challenges and help available for property maintenance in town and can be found at

The city has a YouTube site with other videos at burnsvillemn.



Arboretum Auxiliary hosts Holiday Sale

The Minnesota Landscape Arboretum Auxiliary's Holiday Sale is planned for Nov. 30 through Dec. 2, featuring an array of handmade gifts and decorations.

Shoppers will be able to choose from dried arrangements, wreaths, potpourri, hand-knitted items, tree ornaments and other arts.

All proceeds directly benefit the Arboretum.

Sale hours are noon-3 p.m. Friday, Nov. 30; 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 1; and 11 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 2.

A preview night is planned for 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29, with wine and hors d'oeuvres. Tickets are $25 and can be reserves at www.arbor or by calling 612-625-9865.

Also coming up on the weekend of Dec. 1 and 2:

• There'll be live music on Dec. 1 with the Minnetonka Chamber Choir performing at 11 and noon and Celebration Brass performs from 1 to 3 p.m.

• On Dec. 2, the OVation Chorus performs from 1:30 to 3 p.m.

• The Gift of Truffles, a cooking class, is going on from 9-11 a.m. Dec. 1. Participants can learn how to make chocolate truffles for gift-giving. Cost is $35 for Arboretum members and $45 for non-members. Go to or call 952-443-1422 to sign up.

• Or enjoy "Winter Tree Wonders," a guided walking tour from 10 a.m.-noon Dec. 1. Cost is $5 for Arboretum members and $12 for non-members. Go to or call 952-443-1422 to sign up.

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