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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If you are between the ages of 12 and 19 and have been known to pick up a paintbrush, a camera or a pencil, the city of Woodbury wants you to be a part of the Teen Art Display. "It is an opportunity to have the teens bring in their art and display it and really have that moment for themselves," said Jodi Sauro, recreation specialist with the Woodbury Parks and Recreation Department. Artwork can be submitted starting July 27. The Art display will last from August 3-28 at Woodbury City Hall.
A local beauty and the beast, Princess Kay of the Milky Way, and Viktor Viking, the Minnesota Vikings mascot, teamed up at Red Rock Elementary on Thursday, July 16 to spread the word of good nutrition and exercise to Community Education's Kids Club program. During the event, which was a joint effort between the Minnesota Vikings and the Minnesota Dairy Council, students received many lessons about how to stay healthy.
Rather than hijacking a school bus in order to get to the show, a la Jack Black's movie School of Rock, Paul Green's School of Rock is taking their students on a Midwest summer tour through July 28. Woodbury resident Alex Sutton, 15, has been taking lessons at the St. Paul-based music program for the past two years, and this year will be his second time on tour. "It's basically a real tour, you're on a bus with a bunch of kids who play music -- it's super cool," Sutton said.
Woodbury walked through the wardrobe on July 8-11 for the Woodbury Community Theater's production of "Narnia: The Musical" at New Life Church. "Narnia" relates the beloved classic "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe" through the addition of music. "Narnia" tells the story of the Pevensies -- Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy -- who find a magical wardrobe that transports them to the magical world of Narnia. A wooded winter wonderland world full of mythical friends and foes. Narnia is being held captive by the white witch, Jadis, with a cold fist of cruelty and tyranny.
Plenty of piggy banks may meet their fate in the coming week because Woodbury Parks and Recreation Department's Coin Carnival is right around the corner. On Friday, July 17 Ojibway Park will be transformed into a fun-filled carnival for kids. "It's just a nice thing for the young kids, they get to play carnival type games that are their size," said Michelle Okada, a recreational specialist for youth and family programs with the Woodbury Parks and Recreation Department.
[Editor's Note: This is the third in a series chronicling some of the more interesting plans local teachers' have planned for their summer break ] Woodbury Elementary teacher John Flavin's faith is so important to him that he has been on 12 mission trips -- Mexico, Ukraine, Israel and India -- helping to spread the world of Christianity. "Meeting people for the first time and connecting to people is a great thing," he said.
It was a dog day afternoon on Saturday, July 11 at Leather & Lace Motorcycle Apparel in Afton for the first ever "Homeward Bound Motorcycle Run." Starting at 10 a.m., 30 riders, took off on a 100-mile motorcycle ride to benefit the Homeward Bound Dog Rescue. In addition to the motorcycle run, Selma's & Paninos donated coffee, breakfast and lunch to riders. Music was provided by Brian Mackey who donated his time for the event. Leather and Lace raised $400, including a $100 gift certificate to Petco, and collected 3 full bags of pet supplies during the event.
If you have a two-story accessory structure in Afton, such as a garage or storage shed, be warned that the city knows and is not pleased. The topic of two-story accessory structures began at the May meeting of the Afton Planning Commission when an application from Mike and Trudy Berggren was received requesting several variances so that they may tear down three dilapidated accessory structures and construct one new 940 square-foot structure.
Eileen and Jeff Eng were avid campers before they had kids, but now they're seven-year-old twins Charlie and Keegan are at the age where they can start experiencing the fun of camping, and the Carver Lake Campout was a great way to get an introduction to camping. The Carver Lake Campout was July 10-11 at Carver Lake Park. During the campout families brought only their tents, sleeping bags and pillows; the city supplied everything else.
Afton already has a controversial tower in their midst, but could another structure beginning with a 'T' be added into the mix? Turbines. At the July 6 meeting of the Afton Planning Commission, commissioners heard a presentation from Ralph Jacobson, from Innovative Power Systems, about wind turbines. The issue of wind turbines was looked into by the planning commission, because a new property owner, Alida Messinger, is requesting to install a wind turbine on the property located at 536 Stagecoach Trail South.