Open house to showcase town hall's renovations

The century-old Eagan Town Hall, torched in a 2013 arson, is freshly renovated and opening its doors to the public once again on Sunday.

An open house will allow visitors to see the upgraded town hall — the city's oldest remaining government building — as well as an array of photos and artifacts.

The fire, set by two Prior Lake brothers, damaged the building's exterior and destroyed some of the historic items housed inside. A $500,000 renovation included new windows, lights, an alarm system and air conditioning for preservation purposes. Original paint colors both inside and outside were unearthed during the process.

Sunday's open house runs from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The town hall building is at 3805 Pilot Knob Road in Eagan.

Emma Nelson


County recognized as breastfeeding-friendly

Dakota County is one of two metro counties that the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) has recognized as a breastfeeding-friendly workplace.

The MDH recognizes workplaces, maternity centers and health departments across the state that qualify as breastfeeding-friendly. To gain the designation, workplaces must have a written policy ensuring that breast-feeding employees have adequate time and private space to express and store milk.

Dakota County is one of 15 workplaces recognized by the MDH. Anoka County also made the list.

Emma Nelson


City appoints new council member

The Elko New Market City Council appointed a new member, Kate Timmerman, whose tenure began June 9 and is effective until a fall special election.

Timmerman's appointment succeeds the resignation in April of former Council Member Jason Stern, who moved to San Diego for a new job. The city posted the vacancy, took applications and then interviewed three candidates. Timmerman, a resident for 4 ½ years, is the president of the city's Chamber of Commerce and owns the Firehouse Grille restaurant on County Road 2 and Old Town Road.

The city's current statute does not outline specifically how its council should fill midterm vacancies, according to administrator Tom Terry. The city has followed this same procedure after past resignations, Terry said.

A special election on Nov. 8 will include Timmerman's seat on the ballot, alongside the general election for two other council seats and mayor. The newly elected council member would take office after the special election.

Natalie Daher

South St. Paul

Historian to speak at Dakota County society

The Dakota County Historical Society will host a talk by a South St. Paul historian during the Kaposia Days celebration.

South St. Paul author and historian Lois Glewwe will speak at 1 p.m. June 25 at the Lawshe Memorial Museum. She will host a talk titled "South St. Paul: The Town that Tore Itself Down." Her talk will feature photographs of the South St. Paul back during its prime meatpacking years. Glewwe will also discuss how and why 136 buildings in the city were demolished in the 1970s.

Glewwe has published a book "South St. Paul: A Brief History," which will be available at the free event.



WestWood Elementary hires new principal

Karen Zwolenski will take over July 1 as principal of WestWood Elementary in the Prior Lake-Savage district, replacing Katie Mahoney, who was hired as a principal in the Edina district.

Zwolenski is currently principal at Hawthorne Elementary in the Albert Lea district. She's held various positions with Northfield Public Schools, including dean of students and second grade Spanish immersion teacher. She's also worked at St. Dominic School in Northfield.

Erin Adler


Part of Black Dog trail closed for construction

A portion of trail along the Minnesota River in northern Burnsville will be closed through October to complete construction of the 3.75-mile paved Black Dog segment of the Minnesota River Greenway.

Trail users will still have access to the portion of the trail between the new Minnesota Riverfront Park on the west, off I-35W and Black Dog Road, to a new observation deck being completed this spring.

The trail will be closed beyond the observation deck to the east, and there will be no trail access from the east off Cedar Avenue. Trail users are encouraged to stay off the road during construction.

Erin Adler