Fifth 'birthday' for city's nature center

Savage this weekend is celebrating Arbor Day and the fifth anniversary of the city's own McColl Pond Environmental Learning and Event Center.

The Saturday event is free and lasts from 9 a.m. to noon. Activities include:

• "Yoga on the Pond" at 9 a.m., a free outdoor yoga session for all ages and abilities. Bring your own mat.

• Build-A-Kite workshop from 9 to noon, with help from the Minnesota Kite Society. A $5 donation is suggested.

• Music at 9:15 and 11 in the Aspen Room.

• From 10 to 11, raptor experts with Three Rivers Park District will show off animals.

There are also refreshments and a free seedling for those bringing a nonperishable food item to be donated to the local food shelf. The center is at 13550 Dakota Av. S.

Inver Grove Heights

Money for college for low-income students

The Otto Bremer Foundation is providing $116,000 to help low-income students attend a community college south of the river.

Inver Hills Community College is the lead institution for TuitionMatch-MN, a network of six Minnesota State Colleges and Universities community and technical colleges.

The program is paid for with a $1 million grant from the federal government.

The collaborative "is the first of its kind in the country to apply for and receive" this type of grant, Inver Hills officials said.

The foundation funding will support the TuitionMatch program, which is a 3:1 matched savings program helping low-income Minnesotans build financial assets to pursue a college education.

It is to help 700 Minnesota residents 18 and up, who need to qualify for Pell grants.

Students can start enrolling this month by contacting Steve Yang at or calling 651-450-3330.

south metro

Merger plans proceed for MVTA, Scott cities

With the transit service for Savage and parts of Dakota County considering a merger with Shakopee and Prior Lake, the agency is inviting Scott County riders to weigh in through an online survey.

Talks continue on a potential merger between Shakopee Transit, Prior Lake Laker Lines and the Minnesota Valley Transit Authority (MVTA).

Officials say the Scott County services are heading for a possible budget shortfall by 2017, "which will make it difficult to maintain existing services, such as the Shakopee Route 496 circulator and BlueXpress commuter service, or offer new routes and buses."

MVTA serves Apple Valley, Burnsville, Eagan and Rosemount on the Dakota side, offering local routes and expresses to the two big downtowns and the University of Minnesota.

Merger plans are expected to be laid before elected officials early this summer.

If approved, the rollout would happen early next year.

To take the rider survey, aimed at web services riders desire, visit

Tribe's dance exhibit is open to all

More than 70 youthful members of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community will share their Dakota culture at a free dance exhibition this week.

The event takes place at the Prior Lake High School auditorium, 7575 150th St. W., Savage. at 7 p.m. Thursday. It's open to all, with light refreshments.

Youth will wear handmade regalia and dance to traditional songs, as well as offer spoken thoughts.

It's the 17th year for the event. Kids age 6 and under will also participate in regalia, and an intertribal drum group with adults will sing traditional songs.


Want to work for city? Check online

There are some innovative new online options for anyone seeking a job with the city of Shakopee.

The city is adopting an online employment application system, allowing job seekers to submit applications via the website.

They can also store applications, resumes, cover letters and other material in secure personal account.

In addition, there's an option to submit an "interest card," naming jobs they'd like to be notified of whenever they open.

To see what's open now, head for


Prostate cancer group will meet Thursday

A University of Minnesota prostate cancer support group will meet at 6 p.m. Thursday at Hope Lodge, 2500 University Av. SE, Minneapolis.

Dr. Christopher Weight, a urologist from the university, will speak to the group, and a question-and-answer segment will follow. Wives, family and friends are welcome to attend. There is no charge, parking is free, and light refreshments will be served. For more information, call 612-388-3588.

Staff reports