Events in and around Northfield

Support & Training for Senior Companions

RSVP volunteersThe Senior Companion and RSVP (Retired & Senior Volunteer) programs, in partnership with local agencies and organizations, are offering training sessions for volunteers, age 55 and older, who would like to offer support and friendship to help Rice County elders who may need some help to live independently in the community.

As a friendly visitor, that may include some help with local errands and appointments, you can make a big difference for a neighbor. You can serve anywhere from a couple hours a week to 15 hours a week. Volunteers serving 15 hours a week are eligible to receive a tax-free stipend, and all volunteers receive mileage reimbursement.

A festive weekend!

St. UrhoSt. PatrickI'm neither Finnish nor Irish, but that didn't stop me from getting in the spirit and celebrating both St. Urho's and St. Patrick's days this weekend. You can view photos from both celebrations by clicking the images here.

And if you've got photos of your own celebrations that you'd like to share, send them to and we'll add them to our massive photo galleries. Thanks to Miriam Mueller and Susan Beaumaster who've already added their own St. Pat's pix!

YMCA, city, schools team up to host Healthy Kids Day

In the interest of full disclosure here, I'll start by noting that I am volunteering to help with publicity for this event. But it sounds like a lot of fun and something we'd be happy to write about even if I weren't involved.

And I know it's a little early but this will let you mark the date for one of the first big events for the new Northfield Area Family YMCA. The Y doesn't have a building yet, but its leaders are busy with new ideas.

The event – the first in Northfield – will combine the city’s annual bike safety rodeo with a host of other activities in and around the school. There will be a display of police, fire and ambulance vehicles as well as an emergency helicopter and visits by police dogs, coordinated by Northfield Police, Rice County’s Sheriff’s Department and Northfield Hospital Emergency Medical Services. Key local co-sponsors include the City of Northfield, Northfield Public Schools Community Services and the Healthy Community Initiative, along with dozens of organizations who will offer activities and displays.

John Berquist added to St. Urhos Day lineup

Renowned folklorist and musician to join Friday night festivities at the Eagles Club

I just got word that John Berquist, one of the Upper Midwest’s most respected folklorists, will bring his vocal, instrumental and storytelling talents to Northfield Friday evening as he adds to the already-jam-packed entertainment lineup for the third annual St. Urho's Day celebration at the Eagles Club.

The Eagles fish fry begins at 5:30 p.m., dance instruction with Nordic Jam is at 7:00, and Paul Niemisto will present a short program at 8:00, followed by the headliners, Finn Hall. I'm not sure how John's going to squeeze his way into the lineup, but he says it'll be sometime after 9 p.m. Even St. Urho himself is rumored to be planning an appearance!

St. Olaf to hold lecture on "The Lure of the Roman Arena"

Are you interested in gladiators? Have you ever wondered why the human psyche is drawn to blood sports and violence? What role does it play in culture? Have you ever considered the role of crowd dynamics in human behavior? Why do people act like sheep? Have you read Saint Augustine? How did the arena affect early Christianity? If any of these questions catch your interest, come to Professor Garrett Fagan's lecture:

"The Lure of the Roman Arena: Comparative and Psychological Perspectives."
Sunday March 18th
7:00 - 8:00 pm in Viking Theater, St Olaf College
Free Admission

For more information, please contact Kayla Rasmussen at

Rid the Pain of Winter - March into Spring this Saturday!

Click to view PDFKevin O'Connell, that famous Irish American poet doctor once proclaimed, "The best part about being hit on the head with a hammer is when it stops."  

The pounding pain of winter is over.  I know this because Saturday is St. Patrick's Day, the harbinger of Spring.  No matter your nationality, get out of the house and come downtown to do what needs to be done.  Like St. Patrick ridding the snakes from Ireland, let's march together down Division Street to rid the last of winter from Northfield's community spirit.

On Saturday, gather at Econ O'Foods parking lot at 2 p.m. to partake in something so spontaneous, so light hearted, and so odd that our winter mindset will be magically vanquished for another year ( OK, maybe 7 months).

This is definitely an event for all Northfield citizens of any age or nationality.  We all like to watch a parade, but all of us, especially our kids, love to march in a parade.  To receive candy from a stranger - not so good, but to throw candy to a stranger - what can be more fun!

St. Olaf to host experts on child and teen psychology

Two experts in the moral development and character education of children and adolescents, both psychology professors at the University of Notre Dame, will give public presentations next week at St. Olaf College. Darcia Narvaez, sister of St. Olaf Professor of Spanish Leon Narvaez and director of the Center for Ethical Education at Notre Dame, will speak on "Moral Engagement and Citizenship in a 'Multi-Polar' World" on Wednesday, March 14, at 3:30 p.m. in Holland Hall 501.

On Thursday, March 15, Professor of Psychology Daniel Lapsley will give a public address on "Citizenship in the Ethical Community." The talk will be at 7 p.m. in Viking Theater, lower level of Buntrock Commons.

Written by Amy Gage 

Prominent journalist from India to speak at St. Olaf

One of India's leading journalists will visit St. Olaf on March 12 and 13 to help students and Northfielders learn more about her country -- the world's largest democracy whose booming economy is bringing its 1.1 billion citizens both prosperity and problems, Western-style.

Seline Damayanthi Augustine is chief sub editor of The Hindu, the largest English-language daily newspaper in India.

On Tuesday at 3:30 p.m., she will deliver a public lecture on "Contemporary Journalistic Issues in Pluralistic India." Her talk will be held in the Viking Theater of Buntrock Commons, and the Northfield community is invited to attend.

Written by Amy Gage 

To read more about Augustine visit the St. Olaf Website.

Note: Seline Damayanthi Augustine lectured in one of my classes today and all that she had to say was very intersting.  I would highly suggest hearing her speak.

St. Urho’s Day Celebration & Dance is Friday

I don't know about any of the other couple hundred folks who were at last month's Winter Stomp, but I'm ready to get out on the dance floor again!

I'll have the chance this Friday when the 3rd annual St. Urho's Day celebration comes to the Eagles Club. Don't worry, you don't have to be Finnish to celebrate St. Urho's Day. Similar to the Irish holiday that follows it, everyone is a Finn on St. Urho's Day! And another thing: how long have you lived in Northfield without checking out the Eagles Club? Now's your chance! I recommend coming early for the fish fry, staying for the dance instruction at 7 p.m. and then just making a night of it.

You can check out the photo gallery of last year's festivities to get a taste of what to expect, although I'm betting that we won't have a snowstorm keeping many of the out-of-towners away this year.

Here are the full details for the event:

Just Food Co-op to host CSA Day Saturday

Community members are invited to stop by Just Food Co-op at 516 S Water Street on Saturday, March 10 from 11-2 for CSA Day. Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) farms are a unique way for people to receive fresh, locally grown food at a reasonable price every week during the warm months. You can meet many local CSA farmers at CSA Day, learn about their farming practices and products available, and have the chance to purchase a farm share for the season.

CSA farmers sell “shares” in their upcoming harvest during the spring, giving them the capital to prepare for the growing season. Then, usually from about June to October, the folks who have purchased shares (usually referred to as CSA members) head to the farm each week to pick up an often bountiful basket of whatever is in season. By purchasing a share, CSA members share in the risks, and the rewards, of the season.

This is the second year that the Co-op has hosted CSA Day. This year, attendees will find CSA farmers who are growing vegetables and fruits, flowers, or even meats like chicken, lamb and pork. Don’t miss this great opportunity to meet local farmers.

This Week in The Carletonian

Eyes on Africa hopes to raise awareness
By Evan Sander '10
Former Prime minister of Somalia Ali Khalif Galaydh headlined a day long forum titled, “Eyes on Africa: Voices of Today, Visions of Tomorrow.” Saturday’s event featured prominent speakers as well as student panels who gave their insights on the continent’s current situation and future.

Proposed housing ordinance would affect off-campus housing
By Shane Auerbach '10
After an extended study that began in March of last year, the Northfield City Council is now discussing and drafting a new rental housing ordinance which could be enacted as soon as March 19.

Northfield Whole Living Expo this Saturday

Northfield's first Whole Living Expo will take place this Saturday, March 10, from 10am - 4pm, at the Northfield High School Cafeteria and Auditorium.

Admission is free to the public. Come sample healthy and natural foods, attend free demonstrations and workshops, and visit the booths of local organizations and practitioners.

Exhibitors will come from a variety of health focuses, such as massage and bodywork, chiropractic, yoga, naturopathy, life coaching, transformative learning, etc.

Come celebrate healthy living in the community!

For more information, visit

This event is sponsored by Quiana Grace Frost and the Community Services Division of the Northfield Public Schools.


Scott Schumacher is a board member of The Center for Sustainable Living.

Weekend Entertainment and Events

There's no need to stay in and you won't have to venture far when there are so many diverse events going on in Northfield ...

Thursday, March 8: Artist Sandy Winters will deliver an illustrated speech about her progression as an artist at 7 p.m. at St. Olaf. Winters is a New York-based artist who creates large, dynamic installations. St. Olaf also offers a Spring Mellby Lecture at 7:30 p.m. at Viking Theater. This lecture features David Schodt, professor of economics and director of the Center of Innovation, who will speak on "Commodity Connections: Latin America and the United States." Inspiration for the lecture comes from Schodt's work in the Peace Corps in Ecuador during the 1970s and his later research for a book about Ecuadorian enonomic and political history. And Mark Mraz does it again ... this versatile singer-pianist will play all the favorites at The Tavern Lounge.

Raingarden Workshop at Just Food Thursday

It is getting warmer, and it's time to start thinking about your lawn and gardens. Raingardens can beautify your lawn while protecting our river from pollutants.

Cannon River Watershed Partnership will be talking about the benefits of raingardens at a free class at Just Food Co-op on Thursday, March 8, at 7 p.m. Please call 507-650-0106 or stop by Just Food Co-op at 516 S Water Street to reserve your seat.

Joey Robison is the Marketing and Member Services Manager at Just Food Co-op. 

Applebee's to host Humane Society flapjack fundraiser Saturday

Northfield Applebee’s Restaurant is hosting a flapjack fundraiser to benefit the Rice County Humane Society on Saturday, March 10, 8:00 am to 9:30 am. Tickets are $5.00 and may be purchased at the door.  For more information call 663-1510.  

*All proceeds to benefit the Rice County Humane Society.

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