Northfield, Northfielders in the news

Star Tribune
stribsouthlogo.gif Northfield's top cop, citizens meet online
Northfield Police Chief Gary Smith, a self-described techie and believer that "police kind of belong to the community," has found a way to combine those traits in an Internet-based discussion with Northfield residents. Smith is training at the FBI Academy at Quantico, Va. But evenings in his dorm room the past two weeks, he addressed questions and comments posed in the Northfield Issues e-mail discussion list.

Assessing the Legislature: A look at the 2004 session
Rep. Raymond Cox, R-Northfield: The 2004 Legislative session will probably go down in history as one of the most problematic sessions in Minnesota.

Sen. Thomas Neuville, R-northfield: I am writing this comment three days after the 2004 legislative session. I've calmed down a bit, but am still very frustrated by the collapse of the session.

Debate plan has a place for Carleton
A new group trying to increase national interest in presidential debates hopes to hold a presidential debate on Oct. 11 at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn. The Citizens' Debate Commission on Monday proposed to hold five presidential debates and one vice presidential debate before the November election. The debates would differ from those run by the Commission on Presidential Debates, which currently organizes presidential debates, because they would include candidate-to-candidate questioning, allow follow-up questions and be more accessible to third-party candidates.

Osseo superintendent to take job in Northfield
A longtime educator who has spent the past several years overseeing one of Minnesota's largest school districts will head to the significantly smaller schools of Northfield under a tentative deal struck Thursday night.

Pioneer Press
Lawmakers get an earful in small towns after lackluster session
"I think it sets up a climate that further reduces credibility and confidence in all governments," Northfield Mayor Keith Covey said.
...
Sen. Tom Neuville was sipping coffee with friends here a week after the Legislature left St. Paul with most of its work undone.
...
"It makes everybody look kind of dumb, wasting three and one-half months doing nothing," said Marv Grundhoefer, a lawyer who practices with Neuville.
...
While Neuville, like other senators, does not face re-election this year, all 134 House members do. Neuville's colleague, first-term Republican Rep. Ray Cox of Northfield, faces a stiff challenge from teacher David Bly, who lost to Cox two years ago by 46 votes out of 17,707 cast.
...
"There shouldn't be Oles in the Legislature," cracked John Fossum, a lawyer in town.


Babes of Bridge Square

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left to right: Rose Berg, Darlene Brackee, Carroll Flaten, Thora Phelps, all members of the Northfield Garden Club who help to beautify Bridge Square. Photo taken last week.

Thanks to Bob Phelps and Sandra Bartels for help with the names.


Open discussion on the ISSUES list

Now that the forum with Northfield Police Chief Gary Smith is over (see the Web-based archives), the ISSUES discussion list is now open for discussion of any community-related civic issue.

To join the discussion, subscribe to the ISSUES list. There are 58 area citizens currently on the list.

Registration requires a working email address along with a first and last name.

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The speed trailer and crosswalk sign on Woodley, a item of discussion during last week's Q & A with Chief Gary Smith.


Community events calendar

We have a syndicated community events calendar on the right side of this home page. (Events list not visible if you're reading this via our e-newsletter. You must visit the live site to actually see the listing.)

Anyone can submit Northfield-related events to the community calendar at Upcoming.org's listings for Northfield.

And any Northfield-area company or organization can have this listing of events automatically displayed on their website.

See the very same calendar automatically displayed/updated on the League of Women Voters Northfield and Citizen Wig sites.

Contact Us if you're interested.


Crosswalk patrol; Q & A with Chief Smith

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Northfield Police Office Mark Dukatz was monitoring Bridge Square traffic this morning, particularly for crosswalk violations. In the ongoing ISSUES email discussion this week with Police Chief Gary Smith, Bart de Malignon posted about the crosswalk dangers he experiences as a downtown resident. Chief Smith had several reactions, including a department directive to "... assign an officer to enforce pedestrian crossing violations when officers are not on call for other details."

gsmith120w.jpgLocal citizens can interact online with Northfield Police Chief Gary Smith through Friday, May 21.

The forum takes place via the "Issues" email discussion list.

Topics discussed this past week include everything from crosswalks on Bridge Square, speeders on Woodley, D.A.R.E., meth labs, domestic terrorism, alcohol, and noisy vehicles downtown.

To join the discussion, subscribe to the ISSUES list.

Registration requires a working email address along with a first and last name.

The email discussion list has a web-based archive, so anyone can browse the conversation without subscribing.

We also have an online form for citizens who want to submit a question or comment anonymously. As moderator, I'll decide whether or not to forward the anonymous post to the discussion.

For more information, contact me.


Northfield, Northfielders in the news

Star Tribune
Purple and read all over
Northfield knows Maggie Lee for her newspaper columns, activism and purple wardrobe.

Northfield close to filling top school job
One candidate remains in the search to replace Northfield school district Superintendent Terry Tofte, who is retiring June 30 after four years in the post.

AP/StarTribune: Nash Finch to Close or Sell 21 Stores
Food retailer and distributor Nash Finch Co. announced it will close or sell 21 underperforming supermarkets, mostly in the Midwest, as the company moves away from earlier plans to become a larger player in the retail food market.
(N.org note: Northfield Econofoods is not among the stores named to close. See the full press release on Business Wire.)


Writing class performance at The Key; photo gallery

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Area high schools students taking a year-long writing class read their work at The Key (Union of Youth) last night.

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Writing instructors Annie Klawiter & Ted Tuel

See all the photos in the gallery.
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Police department activity

On May 14, Police Chief Gary Smith wrote in the ISSUES discussion:

We currently post an electronic summary of all activity of the police department. This would include all enforcement activity for a given period of time. We print this off the computer aided dispatch system (CAD for short) from the Pearl Street Dispatch Center.

It is the same information received by the Northfield News, however they edit it for content. The numbers listed are ICRs, Initial Complaint numbers. Items that are not public or ongoing investigations will so indicate. You are welcome to post the list; actually I feel it would be another good source for people to review to see what is going on in Northfield and their neighborhoods.

Here's the May 17 report in Word Doc or RTF formats.

We'll regularly post the reports here on N.org until they're posted on the Police Department's website.


Online Q & A with the Chief of Police

gsmith120w.jpgLocal citizens can interact online with Northfield Police Chief Gary Smith for ten days, starting today, May 12 and continuing through May 21.

The forum takes place via the "Issues" email discussion list which we launched last week.

Topics will include the eleven-week FBI training program in Washington, DC. that Chief Smith is currently attending, as well as any local law enforcement issue that's of interest to citizens.

To join the discussion, subscribe to the ISSUES list.

Registration requires a working email address along with a first and last name.

The email discussion list has a web-based archive, so anyone can browse the conversation without subscribing. I'll blog occasional excerpts here during the course of the forum and put up a transcript of the conversation when it's over.

We also have an online form for citizens who want to submit a question or comment anonymously. As moderator, I'll decide whether or not to forward the anonymous post to the discussion.

For more information, contact me.


Northfield, Northfielders in the news

Star Tribune
End to redistricting dispute is in sight
A court-appointed panel has agreed on new county commission district boundaries for Rice County nearly two years after the county board adopted a redistricting plan that detractors challenged in court as unfair... Hilary Ziols challenged the board's original boundaries, drawn in May 2002, on behalf of the Northfield League of Women Voters. She said the board had chosen the least representative plan of 13 options considered.

Old Northfield Middle School could become arts center
Artspace Projects, a Minneapolis nonprofit that's behind the project, could have the building ready by 2006. The 25-year-old organization has renovated about a dozen buildings around the country for similar uses. Artspace is still developing its plans for the Northfield school. In June, it will present its proposal to the Northfield school board. If members approve, the district would then sell the school to Artspace.


Northfield Enterprise Center meeting

The Northfield Enterprise Center invites local business people to the Marketing for Success seminar at the Golf Club on Wed. at 5:45. elizabethchildcompany.gif "Learn about effective and ineffective marketing strategies as well as hear from local experts. Learn the worst marketing mistakes and the best marketing satrategies. Hear from Elizabeth Child, marketing communications and PR consultant with more than 15 years of experience."

See the online signup form for more info. See all the schmoozing photos in the photo gallery from last month's meeting.
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And meet the new executive director, Lynda Grady.
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Around the blogosphere

Alex Beeby on the old hospital:
Susan Hoyt added that only one inquiry was made to the reuse RFP, and no proposals were received. While this result is what many people expected, it is a major milestone in the old hospital issue. It essentially means that the building is coming down and at least part of the land will likely become park...

Norman Butler on the Chapati rezoning request:
The only problem is that it is not zoned for Commercial Use, though we have every reason to believe that it should and will be. The following meetings (all at 7pm) of Northfield City Council will consider and decide the rezoning to Commercial Use...

League of Women Voters Northfield
Many observer reports

David Bly and Ray Cox on the confirmation hearings for Education Commissioner Yecke

Citizen Wig
Still cross about crosswalks


Community Day of Service Photo Gallery

See the photo gallery of the workcrews and volunteers who made the Northfield Community Day of Service all happen today. (All photos are posted in their original, high-resolution form, suitable for prints.)

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See the entire community day of sevice photo gallery and visit their website.

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Nfld Community Day of Service

From the Nfld Community Day of Service website:

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Ross Currier promoting the event at Tuesday's NDDC meeting

"You are invited to participate in Northfield's Community Day of Service on Saturday, May 8. This one-day service plunge in the community brings together more than 200 youth and adults who cooperate on service projects in the community.

Command central for volunteers on Saturday, May 8, will be at Central Park (right behind Northfield Middle School, at Fourth and College streets). Should you need supplies -- or if you're looking for a project to join -- people will be there to assist you from 8 a.m. to noon. Project leaders and others should pick up their supplies for park cleanup (such as gloves, etc.) and other work at Central Park.

All volunteer projects should commence as soon as possible in the morning, so you can wrap up your work before noon. Then come back to Central Park for a lunch -- it's free! -- and a performance by "Spoken Hand," a social justice puppet group composed of both Carleton students and community members.
" Sign up now!"


Syndicated community events calendar now up

We now have a syndicated community events calendar on the right side of this home page. (Events list not visible if you're reading this via our e-newsletter. You must visit the live site to actually see the listing.)

Anyone can submit Northfield-related events to the community calendar at Upcoming.org's listings for Northfield.

And any Northfield-area company or organization can have this listing of events automatically displayed on their website.

See the very same calendar automatically displayed/updated on the League of Women Voters Northfield and Citizen Wig sites.

Contact Us if you're interested.


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