In 2009, a lack of lifeguards led the city of Woodbury to post warnings to swimmers at Carver Lake Park. Today it’s microcystin, a toxin from blue-green algae, that has the city issuing a warning. Only “trace levels” of the toxin were found and city officials said it poses “a low risk to human and animal health.”

JIM GEHRZ • Star Tribune file,

The Woodbury Lakes shopping plaza, which opened in 2005, has been sold to the Farmington, Mich.-based real estate investment firm Ramco-Gershenson Properties Trust.

Ramco-Gershenson Properties,

Briefs: 'Trace levels' of toxins found in Woodbury lake, officials say

  • August 9, 2014 - 3:00 PM

Woodbury officials announced late last month that they had found “trace levels” of microcystin, a toxin from blue-green algae known to cause liver and kidney damage, in a popular swimming lake, but left the choice of whether to go into the water to swimmers’ discretion.

In a statement posted on the city’s website, officials said that testing, triggered by the discovery of a blue-green algae bloom in Carver Lake on July 24, detected trace amounts of the toxin, which “pose a low risk to human and animal health.”

Lakegoers and pet owners were initially advised to stay out of the water, because “there is no way to predict if or when a bloom will produce toxins,” according to officials, but were told “to make their own decisions about swimming in the water.”

The pea soup-like blue-green algae, which is sometimes difficult to distinguish from other types of algae, may cause skin irritation or upper respiratory problems in people and animals who come in contact with it. But officials warned that in rare cases dogs and other animals died after drinking water laced with the toxin.

For information, contact the city’s environmental resources coordinator, Sharon Doucette, at or 651-714- 3538.


Michigan firm buys Woodbury Lakes

Ramco-Gershenson Properties Trust, a Farmington Hills, Mich.-based real estate investment firm, has purchased the 50-acre Woodbury Lakes shopping plaza.

The upscale shopping center just off Interstate 94, which opened in 2005, is anchored by Trader Joe’s, buybuy BABY, DSW, Gap Inc., Charming Charlie and Michael’s. Other retailers include Banana Republic, Victoria’s Secret, White House/Black Market, American Eagle, Chico’s, LOFT, Buckle, and Express.

The 366,000-square-foot mall is currently 89 percent leased, officials said.

Ramco-Gershenson officials said they also purchased additional land for “the development of restaurant and entertainment uses.”

“Woodbury Lakes and Bridgewater Falls are terrific additions to our high-quality shopping center portfolio,” the firm’s president and chief executive, Dennis Gershenson, said late last month in announcing the purchase of Woodbury Lakes and another mall in Cincinnati. The total purchase price was about $150 million, officials said.

Pine Springs

Construction cuts Hwy. 36 to one lane

Motorists will encounter lane closures and delays on Hwy. 36 until Aug. 20 as crews complete the final stages of the Hilton Trail interchange.

Eastbound Hwy. 36 between I-694 in Oakdale and DeMontreville Trail in Pine Springs will be reduced to a single lane. The lanes will reopen from 3-6 p.m. each day to accommodate evening rush-hour traffic.

When completed later this summer, the $13.8 million project will improve safety and traffic flow on Hwy. 36, Hilton Trail, Highlands Trail and DeMontreville Trail, the Minnesota Department of Transportation said.

For more information about the project, visit


Vacation Bible School set at Trinity Lutheran

Trinity Lutheran Church has invited children age 4 through fifth grade to its “Weird Animals” Vacation Bible School on Aug. 11-15 from 9 a.m. to noon.

The program teaches kids about the love of God through humorous interactions with “weird animals.” Each day, children will rotate through several stations, including singing, games, storytelling and crafts. They finish the morning with group worship.

Mission projects are a big part of Trinity’s Vacation Bible School. This year, children will collect money to construct a water tower at a school in Tanzania.

Trinity’s weeklong event is open to all children, regardless of their faith. Cost is $45, but scholarships are available. To register, visit and click on “Register” at the bottom of the screen or call Kristin Tranby at 651-439-7400 ext. 120.


St. Andrew’s names names new pastor

Members of St. Andrew’s Lutheran Church in Mahtomedi last month voted to call the Rev. Michael Carlson to be their lead pastor.

Carlson will begin his work at St. Andrew’s in mid-August and will be installed in a celebration service on Sept. 21.

Carlson served St. Andrew’s as executive pastor for more than six years before accepting a brief call as senior pastor of Shepherd of the Lake Lutheran Church in Prior Lake. Among his accomplishments during his time at St. Andrew’s, Carlson was instrumental in launching the Community Resource Center, which provides assistance such as emergency shelter, job search, counseling, and more.

Kevin Giles, Libor Jany, Jim Anderson

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