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A town hall meeting hosted by Minnesota legislators in Senate District 57 was standing-room only Saturday, March 11, at the Falcon Ridge Middle School in Apple Valley. Sen. Greg Clausen, DFL—Apple Valley, Rep. Anna Wills, R—Rosemount, and Rep. Erin Maye Quade, DFL—Apple Valley, took audience questions for two hours on topics ranging from Real ID to protesting on the highway.
What's going on at the Capitol? We caught up with two local representatives to get the scoop on how they're representing their constituents in St. Paul.
A Punta Gorda police officer and his chief have been charged in the accidental shooting death of a former Rosemount librarian. Officer Lee Coel has been charged with one felony count of manslaughter with a firearm. Punta Gorda Police Chief Thomas Lewis has been charged with one misdemeanor count of culpable negligence in the second degree.
How did Ursula become so evil? What if Prince Eric had a singing part? Why can't there be more dancing? If you've ever asked yourself those questions while watching Disney's animated movie "The Little Mermaid," it's time to see the stage production. Children's Castle Theater will present the show March 10-25 at the Lakeville Area Arts Center. Unlike the eight or so songs with lyrics in the cartoon, the stage production has 23, several of which are sung by Prince Eric as he pines for the magical voice he has fallen in love with.
With the recent warm weather, and seed packet stands already popping up in stores, gardeners likely are itching for planting season to start. The Dakota County Master Gardeners have prepared a spring expo March 4 called "Let's Get Growing!" to inspire the green thumb community. The expo, which runs from 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. at the Rosemount Community Center, features eight session topics, a silent auction fundraiser, lunch and a keynote address by Curt Coudron, a resource conservationist with the Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District.
Gina Erickson, mother of a teen-aged daughter, shook her head as she listened to a talk Feb. 13 about how to know if your child is involved in harmful behaviors. "I think it's interesting how inventive our teens are," she said, as the speakers explained how a pop can, a necklace and an eyeglass case could be used for smoking marijuana. The program was put on by Jessica Wong and Cendee Palmer of the Hazelden Betty Ford foundation in Plymouth, as part of the Farmington Community Education's "Speaking of Kids" seminar series.
Closing remarks for the jury trial of Matthew Hartley have been postponed until Tuesday, Feb. 21, due to a medical emergency that hospitalized the defense attorney. "We continue to be in a holding pattern," Judge Christian Wilton told jurors Feb. 13, at the Scott County courthouse. "This is nobody's fault. My hope is to have you back in here next Tuesday." Hartley, 34, of Eureka Township, is standing trial for the hit-and-run death of Lakeville resident Mollie Mahowald in Elko New Market Sept. 25.
A Eureka Township man charged with the hit-and-run death of a young woman in Elko New Market in September refused an offer by the prosecution Tuesday, causing his case to go to a jury trial Feb. 6. If the man, Matthew Keely Hartley, had pled guilty to two counts of criminal vehicular homicide, first by operating a motor vehicle in a grossly negligent manner and second by driving while under the influence, he would have had to serve up to 13 years in jail.
Farmington just barely beat Rosemount in being rated one of the safest cities in Minnesota in 2016, according to online consumer research site ValuePenguin. Farmington came in eighth and Rosemount was ninth. "So I beat Rosemount?" joked Farmington's Police Chief Brian Lindquist. "That's all that matters!" In 2015, Farmington was rated 13th and Rosemount was 10th. ValuePenguin publishes this report annually, not as a commissioned report from any one entity, but as a way of advertising their services.
Communicating through social media is like going on a date with a stalker. You like roses? Well, here's a dozen. Chocolate? I've got a whole box. Jewelry? Here's a ring set with your birthstone. Woah. Back the truck up, Facebook. Just because once, out of sheer curiosity, I clicked on a link to the Flat Earth Society, that does not mean I'm now suddenly interested in every crazy conspiracy website out there. And please stop following me to the mall.