William Loeffler is a playwright and journalist from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He worked 15 years writing features for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. He has also written travel stories based on his trips to all seven continents. He and his wife, Michelle, ran the Boston Marathon in 2009.
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Calling all tuba and flute, clarinet and trumpet players from Cottage Grove, Woodbury and elsewhere: the Valley Concert Winds want you.
What happens when a softball team full of sad sack seniors starts winning? For one thing, their wives are surprised. The theatrical comedy "Buzzard Ball" opens a home stand Saturday at the Merrill Community Arts Center at East Ridge High School in Woodbury. Director and artistic director Steven Peterson calls it "The Bad News Bears" meets "Grumpy Old Men." "It's an over 50s softball team in Arizona that has never won a game in three years and still they keep on trying," he said.
Kate Sawyer from East Ridge High School and Abby Wamstad from Park High School were named Dean's List Finalists in a national robotics competition called For Inspiration and Recognition of Science, or FIRST. It's the highest individual honor a student can achieve in the contest — or it will be if they're among the 10 winners who will be announced at the Robotics Competition World Championships, set for April 27-29 in St. Louis.
Ten research projects by sixth-graders at Woodbury Middle School advanced to the Minnesota State History Day Competition, which is scheduled for April 29 at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities. Those who punched their ticket to state include Tanya Luniewski, who put together an exhibit on the history of the Polish Solidarity Movement. The team of Jack Konieck and Ethan Topp also qualified with their project on the Coal Miner's Strike of 1902.
A three-part, $8.1 million road and park improvement project is set to begin later this spring in Cottage Grove. The Washington County Board of Commissioners on March 28 approved a cooperative agreement with the city of Cottage Grove for a new six-leg roundabout that would encompass the interchange of Keats Avenue, East Point Douglas Road and access ramps to and from Highway 61.
The weather couldn't have been better for Saturday's Woodbury Community Expo at East Ridge High School. But while it might have been tempting to stay outside and enjoy the sunshine, that would have meant missing out on the games, food, facepainting, prizes and entertainment inside.
Washington County commissioners last week voiced their continued support for the county attorney office's major crimes unit created to investigate and prosecute sex trafficking, sophisticated insurance fraud, organized retail crime, inter-county organized identity theft and other organized crimes. Assistant Attorney Imran Ali was appointed to head the division. That left a vacancy that was backfilled by the position of special project attorney. At their March 14 meeting, the board voted to extend the full-time position of special project attorney through the end of 2018.
A Cottage Grove townhouse less than a half-mile from an elementary school served as a brothel where women were forced to make a minimum $800 a day as prostitutes, prosecutors allege. Washington County Attorney Pete Orput and Ramsey County Attorney John Choi announced Wednesday the arrest of a man who ran the brothel and others in Oakdale, Maplewood and North Dakota. His apprehension is part of a major sex trafficking bust that involved multiple East Metro law enforcement agencies.
School District 833 "I know what I like so I put stuff in and, voila!" said Nathan Larsen, 10, as he concocted a smoothie last Wednesday at Woodbury Elementary. He ended up eating — or drinking — his words as he tasted the result. Nathan's mouth puckered and his eyes watered. He said he may have overdone the lime juice. Back to the drawing board. The smoothie lab was part of the kick-off for Fuel Up to Play 60, a health and fitness campaign.
They marched in formation into a dark room, to the sound of artillery fire and machine guns. "Take cover!" social studies teacher Prudence Lamar shouted. "You're under heavy fire!" One group of seventh-graders took cover behind a row of chairs that represented the German trenches. Another group hunkered down on the Allied side. Wednesday, one room at Lake Middle School became a war zone as students learned about trench warfare in World War I.