Amber Kispert-Smith has been the schools and Afton reporter at the Woodbury Bulletin since 2008. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Minnesota. She previously worked as a reporter for Press Publications in White Bear Lake.
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Armed with scissors, glue, pictures and their own creativity students at East Ridge High School have the opportunity to materialize their favorite memories of their first year at the new school with a new scrapbook club. "People's activities outside of work is very important to them -- they want to cherish those memories," said ERHS teacher and scrapbook club advisor Diana Mallat.
The city of Afton has had to pay $60,000 to GJ & M Development due to the city staff's failure to produce requested documents relating to the company's lawsuit against the city in a "timely fashion," city officials confirmed. City officials said they plan to appeal the order. "The order was an issue with the timeliness of the response," said Afton attorney, George Hoff. Washington County District Judge Mary Hannon ordered the city to make the payment to Gordy Jarvis, who co-owns the company and also the Afton House Inn, on Aug. 11. The city paid the $60,000 on Sept. 28.
Mark Andrews and Zach Ludvigson are both teachers at Woodbury High School. But they also had never met before, until they learned that they both had completed the Twin Cities Marathon on Oct. 4. The Twin Cities Marathon was Ludvigson's first attempt at the distance. For Andrews, a social studies teacher, the race represented the 57th time he has crossed the finish line at 26.2 miles. Ludvigson, a math teacher, said he decided to set the goal of running a marathon because he saw it as a challenge, something he craves.
For the past two years, fourth grader Nick Plank has been Woodbury Elementary School's weatherman -- delivering the weather every Friday morning during the Wolverine News broadcast. But on Oct. 9, Plank had to share the weatherman spotlight with none other than WCCO's Chris Shaffer. Plank approached Shaffer during this year's Minnesota State Fair if he would be willing to come to Woodbury Elementary and be the guest weatherman for an episode.
The flu has found its way into Royal Oaks Elementary -- as of last week 10 percent of the school's 600 plus students are out with an "influenza-like illness," according to school officials. Royal Oaks reported to the Minnesota Department of Health on Oct. 7 as is required when a school has more than five percent of their student population out sick. Several teachers are also out sick.
The city of Afton has had to pay $60,000 to GJ & M Development after a judicial order stated city staff failed to produce requested documents related to company's lawsuit against the city in a "timely fashion," city officials confirmed. City officials said they will appeal the order. Washington County District Judge Mary Hannon ordered the city to make the payment to Gordy Jarvis, who co-owns the company. Jarvis also owns the Afton House Inn. The lawsuit, file in 2007, claims a moratorium on downtown development that stopped Jarvis's proposed Afton Center project was illegally executed.
The public will have an opportunity to travel through the arts Friday, Oct. 16, with the "Passport to the Arts" concert from the local K & S Conservatory of Music at Five Oaks Church in Woodbury. K&S Conservatory executive director Chaz Fautch started planning a concert series several years ago as a way for the faculty to come together and showcase their talent for the students at the conservatory. "Everyone just kind of did their own thing," Fautch said.
The Afton City Council continued its wind turbine talk during a work session last month. During a Sept. 8 work session two experts in the field, Brian Ross from CR Planning and Sean Wagner from the architecture firm Meyer, Schere & Rockcastle, spoke to the council about wind turbines and turbine ordinances. "We need to hear how the community feels about this issue," Afton City Council member Bill Palmquist said. Ross shed some light on the specifics of turbines, such as the different types -- utility, small and micro -- and the height requirements for wind turbines.
Physical education teachers in District 833 have adapted a new teaching model that uses technology to help students better gauge their physical activity. As part of the $800,000 Physical Education Programs grant from the U.S. Department of Education that District received in July 2008, the district has purchased 600 heart rate monitors for use in the middle schools as a way to monitor the students physical activity and physical health.
Over the last 10 years, the students and staff at Woodbury High School have had a dear friend in an unlikely staff member -- the parking lot security guard.