City officials in Woodbury are promoting participation in a Polar Plunge as a way of helping raise funds for a universally accessible playground at Bielenberg Sports Center.

The plunge takes place on Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14), which this year falls on a Saturday.

Plunges begin at 1 p.m. One can register online or as a walk-up at “pre-plunge” and day-of check-in events.

The plunge itself takes place at Carver Lake beach, 3175 Century Av. S., Woodbury.

There’s a check-in on Feb. 13 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the same location. The same-day check-in on Feb. 14 is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., when the action begins.

Shuttles will run about every 15 minutes on the day of the event, for free, but no parking is allowed at the site itself. Shuttles are from 11 a.m. through the end, expected to be about 2:30 p.m. They run from Cowboy Jacks, 1690 Woodlane Dr., Woodbury, and from Woodbury High School, 2665 Woodlane Dr.

The plunge benefits Special Olympics Minnesota, which is assisting in fundraising for the Madison’s Place destination playground that is to be situated alongside the Bielenberg Sports Center fieldhouse.


Students present ‘Almost, Maine’

Thespians at East Ridge High School will perform the play “Almost, Maine” this weekend at the school’s Loft Stage.

Performances are Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m.

A New York Times reviewer described the 2006 John Cariani play as “a dozen two-character vignettes exploring the sudden thunderclap of love and the scorched earth that sometimes follows.”

Tickets are $7 for adults, $5 for students and seniors. More information is online at

Theatrical reading of ‘Spitting Devil’

Thriller writer Brian Freeman joins actors from the Woodbury Community Theatre this weekend for a theatrical reading of one of his short stories.

Saturday’s event features the story “Spitting Devil.”

The evening also includes a wine and craft beer tasting and a singalong of Broadway tunes.

Tickets are $30 and include a bound, signed version of the story.

The event begins at 7 p.m. at the Merrill Community Arts Center, 380 Rivertown Dr., Woodbury.

Tickets can be purchased at or by calling 651-200-4610.

Freeman writes psychological thrillers. His books have been sold in 46 countries and 20 languages and have been the main selections of the Literary Guild and the Book of the Month Club.


‘Family Fun Night’ for skaters, others

The third annual Winter Family Fun Night is coming up on Saturday, Feb. 7, in Newport.

The city’s park board and the civic group Newport on the Move are hosting.

The event is from 6 to 8 p.m. at Lions Park Skating Rink, 20th Street and 2nd Avenue, Newport. It features skating, winter games, music, a bonfire, and free refreshments. Nonskaters are invited as well as skaters.

St. Croix Valley

Comedy students perform in Hudson

Performances of stand-up comedy featuring students of the well-known comedian Scott Novotny are taking place on Friday and again in March.

“The Best of the Comedy Class, Volumes 1 & 2,” will be performed on Feb. 6 and March 13, both at 7:30 p.m., at the Phipps Center for the Arts, Hudson, Wis.

It showcases students from classes at the center. The comedian who teaches them describes the students as “a fine variety of funny folks from young and older, and even older.”

Eight to 10 students do 10-minute routines. Performers this winter are from Bloomington; River Falls, Wis.; Hudson; Stillwater; New Richmond., Wis.; Maplewood; Amery, Wis, and South St. Paul.

Tickets are $10 and the rating is PG 13. Reservations are at 715-386-8409 or online at