Items that deal with people in and around Northfield

Rotary honors Peggy Prowe

Each year the Northfield Rotary Club honors one person with the "Marston Headley Service Above Self Award." This year Peggy Prowe took the honor. Pete Stolley and Charlie Cogan are shown here as they made the presentationat Thursday's weekly meeting.

I met Peggy through her work on the Mill Towns Trail . In fact, we met as she arrived on her bike for a meeting at City Hall. But Peggy has a long, rich history of service to the community. Charlie did a great job of telling her story, so I asked him to send along his speech:

New math/science charter school proposed

May 22 2007 7:00 pm
May 22 2007 9:00 pm

The Cannon River STEM School, a proposed K-12 charter school with special emphasis on science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), is presenting a community information meeting at 7 p.m., Tuesday May 22, at the Northfield Public Library meeting room. The school will be located at the Maltby Nature Preserve , a 90-acre site on the Cannon River. The Maltby Nature Preserve is just south of Randolph in Stanton Township between Northfield and Cannon Falls. During this meeting, information about the proposed school will be provided and input from the community will be solicited. Refreshments will be served. For additional information call 507-664-0770 or email's Weekly Book Report, May 17, 2007

April showers bring May book reports. New releases at the Northfield Public Library and the books of summer from River City. Let's get to it before this ice creams melts...

A dawn salute to Norway

Syttende Mai salute Several hardy souls gathered at Dean Kjerland’s 3rd Annual Syttende Mai Linie Aquavit Bloody Mary Salute to Dawn in the garden of the Kjerland Building, downtown on the river this morning. The first toast was made at 5:17 am. The event continued with the arrival of the Kavli bread, pickled (in white wine, of course) herring, and more bottles of aquavit. It was cold enough to see one's breath, but we enjoyed a lovely sunrise amongst the fragrant Spirea blossoms. The group dispersed with most moving on to the annual Frokost in the King's Room at St. Olaf. See you next year?

Dean Kjerland is a downtown business owner (and proud of his Norwegian heritage).

This Week in the Northfield Blogosphere - May 15th, 2007

The 'Sphere, she is back. We're converted to 100% recycled electrons and washed our 'Destroy Entropy' t-shirt - it gets so dirty so quickly...

The Northfield Construction Company has a picture-filled post detailing their work on laying the foundation for the third First National Bank branch...

The workers need to carefully compact soils around the water and storm water piping to ensure there is no floor or pavement settlement in the building or parking lots. We also took delivery of the reinforcing steel for the foundation. This gets to be quite a pile of steel----all specially bent to match the requirements of the foundation.

“Black” is end of rainbow for Carleton senior

For Martin Miller ’07 (pictured left) and the rest of Carleton’s Experimental Theater Board (ETB), this Thursday is bound to be a red-letter day. That’s because it’s opening night of their much-anticipated—and Miller’s final—production at the College. “The Woman in Black” premieres Thursday, May 17 at 8 p.m. in the Nourse Little Theater, with additional performances on Friday, May 18 at 8 p.m. and Saturday, May 19 at 8:30 p.m. Performances are free and open to the public; reservations are recommended.

Written by Juliet Dana '09

To read the full story visit the Carleton website.

Gunflint Trail fire strikes close to home

We may think the fire blazing the past few days along the Gunflint Trail is far away from us, but Vicki and Lee Dilley of Northfield are among people from across the state and beyond who have a personal stake in this news story.

Vicki mentioned the fire briefly Thursday before our weekly Rotary meeting. She was worried about her friends and neighbors up north, who were up there keeping her house there safe. I asked her to write a story about this experience, but she felt she wasn’t a writer. I got her to send me e-mail updates instead. Over the past couple of days, she’s shared more of her thoughts – and more of the reasons why so many people feel a special connection to this remote and beautiful wilderness. I have compiled her entries here, and I think you’ll see she was too modest about her writing skills.

Girls Night Out photos via Griff Wigley

GnoGriff Wigley has posted a bunch of photos from last night's Girls Night Out held by the downtown businesses. From the appearance of it, it looks like it was a great success.

This is great thinking from the downtown - the sort of originality that's required to a keep a downtown thriving in the Age of Big Box.

The Rotblatt Mystery

We got a letter from someone in Ohio the other day via our contact form, and this is what it asked:

I was curious as to when the Rotblatt Softball game takes place each year in your town. Thank you for any info you can provide…

Say what? Rotblatt? I've lived here going on seven years now and I've never heard of it. A little Googling revealed...

A window to his work" title="David Kjerland '65 in his studio" hspace="5" vspace="0" width="75" height="100" align="left" /> On a sunny afternoon in April David Kjerland '65 (pictured left) was listening to Dire Straits in his studio (co-owned with Tonya Kjerland '90) above the Old Firehouse Building in downtown Northfield. Forty-nine colorful glass panels were spread out on tables throughout the space. They were the elements of the 103-year-old Steensland Hall skylight that was destroyed by last year's hailstorm and lovingly restored by Kjerland over the course of four months.

"I loved every minute of it," says the former Civil Rights activist who opened his first studio in Northfield May 2, 1973. "I have really great feelings about that school," he adds as he looks out his window over the river toward St. Olaf.

Written by David Gonnerman '90

To read the full story visit the St. Olaf website.

Poet Susan Stewart to speak at Carleton Thursday - EVENT CANCELLED

Editor's note: We just received word that this event has been cancelled due to a death in Ms. Stewart's family. We will let you know if it is rescheduled.

Acclaimed poet and critic Susan Stewart will speak about her creative process while writing her forthcoming book of poetry, “Red Rover,” Thursday, May 10 at 4 p.m. in the Gould Library Athenaeum. A reception and booksigning will follow Stewart’s lecture. The event is free and open to the public.

A professor of English at Princeton University, Stewart is an award-winning poet and also considered one of the most important cultural critics writing in America today.

Written by Jenny Oyallon-Koloski '08

To read more about Stewart, visit the Carleton website.

St. Olaf students show that using less means more

During February, students at St. Olaf College and around the state made a concerted effort to reduce energy consumption as part of the Minnesota Campus Energy Wars. When the numbers were measured against the amount of consumption per person during the previous year, St. Olaf came out on top in the electricity and combined energy categories, and took second place in heat. [Editor's note: to give fair credit to Northfield's other college, the contest began last year as a competition between dorms on the Carleton campus.]

"We truly are on our way to being a college that conserves and puts our environmental -- and cost saving -- ideals to action," says St. Olaf student Mary Sotos '07 (pictured left), an environmental studies major.

Written by Trent Chaffee '09

To read the rest of this story visit the St. Olaf website.

St. Olaf alum returns to conduct choir concert

Former St. Olaf Choir member Craig Hella Johnson '84 (pictured left) has returned to the Hill to conduct the St. Olaf Choir's spring concert, which will be held Sunday, May 13 at 3:30 p.m. in the newly remodeled Boe Memorial Chapel. Blurring the boundaries between musical genres, the wide-ranging program will include traditional church music, two movements of a work by modern Finnish composer Einojuhani Rautavaara and an arrangement of John Lennon's "Imagine."

The concert, which will be streamed live, also will feature settings of texts by American poets Langston Hughes, Emily Dickinson and Mary Oliver, as well as Johnson's own composition, "Will There Be a Morning?"

By Carl Schroeder '05

To read the rest of this story visit the St. Olaf website.

Ecuadoran visitors forge Minnesota bond

If I ask you to loan me some paintbrushes next fall, remember this story.

A couple of weeks ago Northfield Rotary officials asked for hosts for five people from Ecuador who would be visiting on what’s called a GSE or Group Study Exchange. In the last few days my husband and I have had the pleasure of meeting all five group members and hosting one.

We had parties, pizza, lots of driving round getting everyone to one place or another on time – and lots of fun. The visitors already had spent three weeks touring Mankato, Rochester, Owatonna, Inver Grove Heights and Bloomington, visiting businesses, observing government and learning about the area. We were the last stop and the group members were struggling to balance their desire to see everything and their desire to get home.

This week in the Carletonian

Carletonian logo

Wireless access will soon increase
by Ben Blink
Students longing for dependable wireless internet access may soon discover that more places around campus are in range of strong wireless signals. “We’ve recieved enough funding this year for 128 additional devices,” Information Technology Services Network Manager Chris Dlugosz told the Carleton Student Association, Monday. The devices Dlugosz referred to are small radio transmitters that emit a signal that can be picked up by student computers and provide access to the Carleton network.

Carleton to offer Arabic in Fall 2007
by Evan Sander
After an exhaustive five-year search, Carleton has officially started an Arabic program with the hiring of Natalie Khazzaal. Khazzaal, a Bulgarian immigrant, is currently enrolled in a Ph. D. program at UCLA and will teach at Carleton for two years with an evaluation period at the end of the second year in order for the admisistration to assess the future of the Arabic program.

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