Staff Directory 6370491

Erin Adler

Reporter | South Metro
Phone: 612-673-1781

Erin Adler is a suburban reporter covering Dakota and Scott counties for the Star Tribune, working breaking news shifts on Sundays. She previously spent three years covering K-12 education in the south metro and five months covering Carver County.

An Anoka native, Adler lives in south Minneapolis with her two dogs. She graduated from the College of St. Benedict with an English and secondary education degree (and a concentration in studio art). She taught seventh grade English and religion at a Catholic school in Edina for two years and later taught adult ESL/ELL for Minneapolis Public Schools. She has a Master's degree in English/Literacy education from the University of Minnesota. In her free time, she enjoys reading, drawing and attempting to complete home improvement projects.
Recent content from Erin Adler
From left and clockwise, Hannah Jones, Deena Winter, Maggie Snyder, Amanda McKnight and Britt Johnsen, all former reporters for Southwest News Media,

Six southwest Twin Cities area newspapers will publish last issue this week

The Southwest News Media publications are part of MediaNews Group, which is owned by Alden Global Capital, a hedge fund known for gutting and then closing local papers.
John Keeley, left, and Matthew Jansen of Municipal Builders Inc. pour concrete at the site of the water treatment plant Monday in South St Paul.

Several south metro cities tackling elevated radium levels

Inver Grove Heights, Savage and South St. Paul are dealing with high radium in their water supply, using a range of short-term fixes and expensive solutions.
The Northview Pool in South St. Paul.

South St. Paul considering 'one last hurrah' for its well-loved Northview Pool

The city eventually plans to close the pool, first opened in 1956, because of the cost of repairs -- but may keep it open for a final summer.
Many city leaders said they worried about how more duplexes would impact their communities.

Bill to allow duplexes across Minnesota is likely doomed this session

Affordable housing advocates hope to find other roads to make it easier to build small apartment buildings across Minnesota.
Eden Prairie Schools has signed a purchase agreement with United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI) for part of the company's headquarters property, which the

Eden Prairie Schools plans to turn UNFI office into a school building

The Eden Prairie City Council must still approve a development agreement before plans are final; the district hopes to start using the building this fall.
A room at the Dakota Woodlands family shelter in Eagan. Dakota County is working to create a shelter for adults that would also have individual rooms

Dakota County resumes planning for homeless shelter: 'We have an urgent need'

Six months after shelving a plan to convert a hotel amid pushback, officials say they're moving slowly and deliberately to ease concerns and find a location.
Shakopee's second fire station.

A 'serious, sobering report' prompts changes at Shakopee Fire Department

Outside consultants reported problems ranging from a lack of training to ethics violations, with one consultant labeling Shakopee the "worst department" they'd seen in 18 years of consulting.
Jordan is a small city in Scoot County , which boasts the state's largest candy store and a famous town-league baseball park called the Mimi Met.]Rich

Scott County cities worry Met Council decision could prompt 'disorderly development'

The Met Council recently granted a change to a Scott County township that will allow a parcel to avoid hooking up to city water and sewer, effectively blocking Jordan's future development there.
The Johnson Brothers wanted to redevelop the location as industrial and build a new headquarters on the site.

Johnson Brothers withdraws application to redevelop Blue Cross Blue Shield site in Eagan

The company is looking at other options in the metro, including remaining at its St. Paul location.

Police investigating New Brighton shooting that injured one person

The victim was shot in the back by someone they knew, police said. The suspect was still at large.

Shakopee Teamsters approve agreement with city, averting strike

Teamsters Local 320 members will get 14.5% general wage increase over contract's three years.
Ted Peters, from left, Becky Zech, Doug Steele and Dennis Newton tap their paddles after finishing a game of pickleball on Feb. 23 at the Eagan Commun

As Twin Cities suburbs age, cities ponder the future of their community centers

While some cities are undertaking multimillion-dollar renovations, others worry that they can't fund pools, indoor parks and gathering spaces amid rising costs for other basic city services.
Nordic skiers from McGuire, Century and Kenwood Trail middle schools in Lakeville went for a run on land the school district had wanted to sell. Lenna

National homebuilder cancels purchase of Lakeville school district land

Students and residents had protested the sale of 14 acres of woods and wetlands.
Inver Hills Community College's new Bo the Bee mascot

Inver Hills gets new bee mascot to match its environmental pledge

The Inver Grove Heights community college is the first campus in Minnesota to get the special designation for its pledge to support pollinators.
Dakota County Library Deputy Director Jennifer Reichert Simpson hands out stickers and pins at the Kaposia Library’s grand opening on Feb. 20.

Newest Dakota County Library branch opens in South St. Paul

The opening of the new Kaposia Library, which replaces a city-run library, was marked this week with song and celebration.
Fallen firefighter known for selflessness

Adam Finseth didn't let fear get in his way

Finseth, the Burnsville firefighter and paramedic who died in the line of duty, always had a smile and a kind word for others, friends said.
The post office in New Prague, pictured in August 2022.

New Prague will get new post office building

The existing building is cramped and has no parking for the public or people with disabilities.
Northfield, Minn. July 2014 Welcome sign coming into town on Hwy. 3

Northfield decides it's content with most of its slogan, asks locals to fill in third blank

The city will keep the first two words of its previous slogan, "Cows, Colleges and Contentment" and switch out the third to a rotating range of options.
The view of TCO Stadium and TCO Performance Center from one of two Presidential Suites. The OMNI Viking Lakes Hotel opens Thursday. The Nordic-themed

Coming to Eagan's Viking Lakes complex: $10 million 'connection center' for accounting firm CLA

Clifton Larson Allen (CLA) has signed a 16-year lease for a 40,000-square-foot space to be built over the next year.
An apartment at the Triple Crown Residences in Shakopee. This is the living room and kitchen area of a two-bedroom unit.

Shakopee luxury apartment residents furious at forced move to new building next door

Hundreds of residents of the Triple Crown Residences must move to a neighboring building because of sprinkler problems.

West St. Paul City Council adds junior member

The city hopes adding a high school student to the council will broaden city leaders' perspectives.
Light-rail train

Group tasked with reforming Met Council offers lawmakers six options

A task force convened by the Legislature couldn't agree on a single proposal for restructuring governance of the regional planning authority.
As drivers enter Farmington, they are greeted with elements of the city's longtime logo.

Farmington offers class to help online daters manage frustration

The parks and recreation department is branching out to offer classes on topics beyond athletics and crafts.
Drive up customers dropped mail in mailboxes at the Apple Valley post office. ] GLEN STUBBE • Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Federal agency announces statewide audit of mail delays, identifies 'deficiencies' at four Twin Cities postal locations

Four audits from Eagan, Apple Valley and New Brighton and the St. Paul distribution center were released Wednesday from the USPS office of Inspector General, revealing problems with delays, delivery and postal facilities.
Patrick McCarthy

After property owner's death — and battle over his will — Eagan green space will be preserved

A 134-acre property worth $10 million had been the subject of a legal battle involving multiple wills; it will now be preserved as farmland and wildlife habitat.
An aerial view of the McCarthy land.

After property owner's death — and battle over his will — Eagan green space will be preserved

A 134-acre property worth $10 million had been the subject of a legal battle involving multiple wills; it will now be preserved as farmland and wildlife habitat.
The Hastings City Council has approved a resolution calling for a ceasefire to the Israel-Hamas war.

Hastings City Council approves resolution calling for ceasefire in Gaza

The Hastings Progressives group brought forward the resolution that also calls for the United States to send humanitarian aid to the region.

Fast food beef laid to rest after Taco Chon in Burnsville and St. Cloud changes name

The owner of Taco Chon Mexican Grill has agreed to change his business' name to Don Chon Mexican Grill after a lawsuit was filed by Taco John's.

Dakota, Scott counties to vote on new, $24 million Lakeville recycling facility

Both counties' boards will vote this week on the proposed Recycling Zone Plus facility, which officials say is needed as demand outpaces capacity at current facilities.
Workers from IceTimeMN put a liner in one of 5 rinks at TCO Stadium Wednesday January ,10 2024 in, Eagan,Minn. ] JERRY HOLT • jerry.holt@startribune

Five ice rinks will take place of canceled ice maze at Eagan's Viking Lakes

Warm weather nixed plans for an ice maze this year, but the five rinks featuring 45,000 square feet of ice will instead open Monday at the south metro headquarters of the Minnesota Vikings.

Dakota County eliminates library late fees

Patrons with overdue fees will no longer be blocked from checking out books, but materials out for more than six weeks will come with a fee.

Rosemount-Apple Valley-Eagan superintendent to retire at school year's end

Mary Kreger will have led the district of 30,000 for six years when she leaves this June.

Bison herd makes a powerful return to Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux land in the south metro

Ten female bison arrived Nov. 29 and now graze on land owned by the tribe.
Nordic skiers from McGuire, Century and Kenwood Trail middle schools in Lakeville went for a run on land recently sold by the school district.

Lakeville schools sold 14 acres to a developer, and neighbors and students are unhappy

Many say they weren't told about the sale of 14 acres north of Kenwood Middle School, which is used by multiple athletic teams for practice.
Rambling River Park in Farmington.

Coming to Farmington city parks: Free Wi-Fi

Hiawatha Broadband is building a new fiber optic network in the city, and once it is complete there will be free Wi-Fi access in 20 of the city's 29 parks.

Woman's body found by Ford Lock and Dam in Mississippi River

Authorities do not suspect foul play, a spokesman for the Ramsey County water patrol said.
Tou Ger Xiong grew up in St. Paul and was valedictorian at Humboldt High School.

Vigil set to remember St. Paul activist Tou Ger Xiong

The life of Tou Ger Xiong will be celebrated on Dec. 23 at East Ridge High School in Woodbury.

Roseville church will add to tiny home community for formerly homeless

Prince of Peace Lutheran Church in Roseville will add a unit under a new state law allowing "sacred settlements" on faith communities' land.

Some Twin Cities residents are fed up with mail delays — and now the USPS is investigating

The United States Postal Service Office of Inspector General is reviewing postal facilities in Apple Valley, Eagan, New Brighton and St. Paul after reports of problems — and complaints from at least one member of Congress.

Minnesota's largest landfill is set to get bigger even as the state tries to cut waste

Pine Bend landfill in Inver Grove Heights has been targeted for expansion; public comment on a permit is open through Dec. 15.
Meta plans to build a data center in Rosemount.

Meta data center wins planning approval; Rosemount council vote is next

Meta Platforms wants to build a data center on 280 acres in UMore Park along County Road 42 in Rosemount.
Meta plans to build a data center for Rosemount.

2nd data center could come to Rosemount, stirring concern, excitement

A $700 million Meta data center is in the works, and now a second data center plan, dubbed "Project Mercury" is under review in the south metro suburb.
An overhead view of the Apple Valley Aquatic Center.

Apple Valley prepares for $73 million in park improvements, following referendum approval

Parks and trails across the city will get improvements over the next several years, and the city will construct a new pool.
The new baby female giraffe was tucked under her mother, Zinnia, as she made her first public appearance at St. Paul’s Como Zoo and Conservatory on

You voted — here's the name of the Como Zoo's new baby giraffe

The zoo asked people to vote for their favorite of three names for the baby giraffe, born Nov. 6.
The new baby female giraffe was tucked under her mother, Zinnia, as she made her first public appearance at St. Paul’s Como Zoo and Conservatory on

You voted, and now St. Paul's Como Zoo will tally the results to name its new baby giraffe

The 6-foot, 132-pound calf was born Nov. 6, and joins three other giraffes at the zoo.
The basketball court at River Bend Park in Savage, Minn., seen on Friday, Nov. 10, 2023. Savage officials have reinstalled the basketball hoops at Riv

Savage reinstalls basketball hoops removed after shootings — and makes new plans for River Bend Park

The hoops, which had been down since shootings this spring, went back up in October.

South St. Paul will cover full cost of sidewalk repairs

The new policy approved by the city should make the process less cumbersome for both the city and residents, officials said.
A dog checked out sketches of Inver Grove Heights’ new dog park at an open house in August 2017.

Reports of bullet casings found in Inver Grove Heights dog park prompt closure by city

The Heritage Village dog park is closed "in an abundance of caution," Mayor Brenda Dietrich said.
Kelly Vranicar and Erika Kensinger helped a customer at Rosemount Floral by Lucky Lola in downtown Rosemount on Friday.

Is Rosemount the new Maple Grove? South metro suburb is booming — and there are hundreds of acres left

The fast pace of growth has some residents excited, and others concerned about traffic, affordability and maintaining a "hometown feel."

Minnesota Zoo takes in orphaned sea otters from Alaska

The pups are expected to make their first public appearance in December or January.

Minnesota Zoo takes in orphaned sea otters from Alaska

Rep. Angie Craig, D-Minn.

Angie Craig asks U.S. Postal Service for new Lakeville-Farmington post office

Craig, who represents south metro cities that have experienced problems with mail service, says a new location is needed to serve growing suburban communities.
Vernetta Benton, mother of music producer Terry Lewis, dies at 87; 'Momma B' served as mother to whole neighborhood

Vernetta Benton, mother of music producer Terry Lewis, dies at 87; 'Momma B' served as mother to whole neighborhood

Benton, 87, the mother of noted producer and songwriter Terry Lewis, was both firm and gentle with her own kids — and everyone else's children, too.
Minneapolis City Council 12th Ward candidates, from left, Aurin Chowdhury, Nancy Ford and Luther Ranheim.

South Minneapolis council candidates talk public safety, rent control and where to put the Third Precinct

The council-elect in the open 12th Ward race will get to work soon, replacing Council Member Andrew Johnson when he steps down in November.
A raccoon stood on top of a St. Paul sewer drain while other raccoons took shelter from the rain inside.

Dozens of stumbling, slumping raccoons sighted in Burnsville since summer

Residents have reported 39 sick raccoons since July; Distemper, salmonella poisoning are possible causes.
Patrick McCarthy

Battle of (two) wills: Eagan property owner's death sets off legal battle for one of the city's last big green spaces

Two people — with two different wills— say they are the rightful heirs to a $10 million, 134-acre property; a judge is considering the case.
The Treetop Trail at the Minnesota Zoo in Apple Valley pictured in July 2023.

Minnesota Zoo earns accreditation

The zoo is one of three in Minnesota accredited by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums through a process requiring an on-site inspection and interviews with zoo officials.
Terrance Winborn, right, and Andy Noel, a member of his legal team, hold a press conference at the offices of Robins Kaplan LLP in Minneapolis, Minn.,

$12.2 million settlement for man who lost limbs after 'deliberate indifference' by Scott County jail

The bacterial infection resulted in catastrophic injuries to Terrance Winborn.
Inver Grove Heights Mayor Brenda Dietrich

Inver Grove Heights vetoes rezoning that would have allowed washer fluid maker to move into city

Move by Bulk Fluid Systems would have required changing the city's comprehensive plan.
A $10 million state grant would have enabled Dakota County to buy the Norwood Inn and Suites in Eagan and renovate it into a shelter with 55 individua

Dakota County reverses direction on applying for grant to turn Eagan hotel into homeless shelter

More than 100 people showed up at a Dakota County Board meeting Tuesday, most opposing the shelter idea.

South St. Paul, not developer, will handle apartment streetscape updates

The Yards and Backyards developer the Beard Group said streetscape improvements were more work than they typically complete with a project.
Little remains of the Hastings Creamery after it burned overnight on Wednesday.

Weeks after Hastings Creamery closed, facility is lost in an overnight fire

Officials have not determined a cause for the fire, but have opened an investigation. Dakota County commissioner calls timing of blaze "oddly coincidental."
The Dakota County Board will vote Sept. 19, 2023, on whether to apply for a newly created state grant that would help fund the purchase of the Norwood

Dakota County leaders want to buy Eagan hotel and transform it into a homeless shelter

Most of the Dakota County Board expressed support for applying for $10 million state grant to help fund the purchase and renovation of the Norwood Inn & Suites; the full project would cost an estimated $24 million.
A rendering of Beacon Interfaith Housing Collaborative’s proposed affordable housing complex, Prairie Pointe, in Shakopee.

Construction of affordable apartments will proceed after Shakopee withdraws rezoning request

Construction will begin in spring 2024 on apartments meant for low-income residents and people emerging from homelessness.
Burnsville City Manager Gregg Lindstrom

Under plan, Burnsville property owners would be able to choose where some tax dollars go

The city is working to implement "participatory budgeting," which allows residents to vote on spending for some public projects.
People along the parade route for Champlin’s annual Father Hennepin Festival competed for tossed candy in June 2019. The Father Hennepin Festival is

Secede from Hennepin County? Champlin is considering it.

City officials say they are not getting enough county support for city road and infrastructure projects, and would like to join Anoka County instead.
The Minnesota Renaissance Festival draws crowds each year to Shakopee, MN.

New Minnesota Renaissance Festival transportation plan eases traffic, parking headaches

The real test will come in the final weeks of the festival, when attendance is highest.
A view of the proposed expansion area on the western edge of Moose Mountain. The popular Oberg Mountain area is in the background at top right.

Superior National Forest decision nixes Lutsen Mountains' expansion plans

The Forest Service issued a "no action" draft decision due to the expansion's potential effects on tribal resources, the Superior Hiking Trail and the environment.
The former Thompson Oaks Golf Course in West St. Paul has been revamped with wetland restoration and other improvements.

Improvements complete at former Thompson Oaks golf course

Thompson Oaks, West St. Paul's only municipal golf course, closed in 2018.
Bob Pilz carried Roger, an American alligator, at Sustainable Safari in Maplewood in October 2020.

Exotic petting zoo set for former Old Navy in Burnsville, worrying animal rights groups

Sustainable Safari, which also has a Maplewood location, will open at Burnsville Center.
Jori Jones

Gustavus athlete who died in crash known for work ethic, character

Jori Jones, 19, of Little Canada was a goalie for the Gustavus hockey team that won a national title this year. She was part of a group of players who had spent the weekend in South Dakota.
A rendering shows what the Bryant’s Ridge development in South St. Paul will look like. The project is a mix of apartments, twin homes, townhomes an

Former demolition landfill will transform into environmentally friendly neighborhood in South St. Paul plan

The Bryant's Ridge development, which received City Council approval last week, still has several hurdles to clear before apartments and townhomes go up.
A paved path will connect Lebanon Hills Regional Park (shown) and the Mississippi River Greenway while honoring the county’s veterans.

Dakota County breaks ground on Veteran's Memorial Greenway

The five-mile path starts in Inver Grove Heights.

Carver County Fair tiger show brings concerns about safety, animal welfare from Humane Society

Demand for such shows has declined over the last five years since the Ringling Brothers Circus stopped using exotic animals in its performances in 2017, and smaller outlets followed suit, an advocate said.

Carver County Fair tiger show brings concerns about safety, animal welfare from Humane Society