Kara Hildreth / contributor
Talking about race in a truthful way can be uncomfortable. Talks may be inspiring and build bridges to spark meaningful conversations. Ultimately, community conversations can perhaps improve race relations across Minnesota. That was the community mission of One Book, One Farmington events in October. Besides weekly library events in October, three authors spoke at Farmington High School on Oct. 24, to share personal stories and essays from the book, "A Good Time for the Truth: Race in Minnesota."
Budding entrepreneur Laura Hanks is persistent and determined to make sure her career dream becomes reality. The persistence paid off. Back in May Hanks was told at Farmington City Hall it would be doubtful she would be able to open a day spa in her home due to the nature of the city ordinance. She got busy and gathered 185 signatures in support of expanding her home-based business Main Street Nails into a full-service salon called Main Street Spa. "I still wanted to live here and do business," Hanks said.
Police said a Farmington woman died by suicide inside her home Monday, Oct. 31, during a seven-hour standoff at Twin Ponds Circle Townhomes located off Highway 3. Farmington police Det. Shawn Scovill responded to a call at 3:20 p.m. from the woman's mother and friend, who said she was making suicidal threats and possessed a handgun. Farmington police made contact with the woman by phone and at the residence. She was alone in the two-story townhome.
This year Rosemount will honor veterans in a collaborative effort by showing gratitude to men and women who served their country and sacrificed time away from family to protect America's freedoms. The four groups working together are the city of Rosemount, the Rosemount Area Arts Council, the Rosemount VFW and Rosemount Beyond the Yellow Ribbon group.
Understanding the backstory of human rights and the complexity of immigration law was discussed at a recent One Book, One Farmington library presentation. Michele Garnett McKenzie shared her presentation, "Immigration and Human Rights in Minnesota" at the Oct. 10 Farmington Library weekly talk that is part of the One Book, One Farmington collaboration between Farmington educators and the Farmington Library.
The Farmington Education Association teachers union reached agreement with the school district on a new contract approved by 80 percent of union members. The two-year collective bargaining agreement represents about 460 teachers who are members of the FEA that voted on the agreement Oct. 11. The contract runs from July 1, 2017, to June 30, 2019. Farmington school officials were satisfied in how the teachers' contract was negotiated early and with an overall high percentage approval from FEA members. Contract settlement
Life can be quite serendipitous in the way people come into our lives. Artist Nick Sinclair and Jimi Brown say this is true as they tell the story of how they crossed paths as adults. The two men attended grammar school in Prior Lake but were not friends. "I ended up finding Nick again when I worked with his brother in Lakeville," Brown said. "I was admiring Nick's art and I had it up on my computer when Andy came up to me and said, "You like that artwork?'" Said Sinclair: "My Dad was his soccer coach growing up and we never knew each other."
Alison Cromie connects to youngsters by pairing music with laughter. The singer and songwriter is not afraid to delve into dark places. She does not refrain from writing songs with lyrics about questionable manners. Last year she wrote her first children's song, "Don't Put Your Fingers in Your Nose." This tune was a big hit with her own children who gave her rave reviews as a captive audience. "I played it for them in the car and they went wild and if they could have rolled in their seats, they would have," Cromie said, laughing.
Farmington Farmers Market foot traffic is dying on the vine and market vendors want a venue change for next spring. The last two years the Farmington Farmers Market has been open Thursday afternoons at Dakota County Fairgrounds from spring through fall. Prior to that, the market venue was open weekly downtown in front of city hall. Market vendor Arlyn Lamb spoke during the open forum Monday, Oct. 16, at the Farmington City Council meeting about a potential venue change on behalf of farmers and vendors who sell goods and fresh produce.
Civilian protesters took to the streets holding riot signs and shouting chants last weekend in Dakota County. The volunteers were actually part of a mock demonstration for a county law enforcement training session. The exercise was meant to help officers learn how to properly respond to civil unrest and how to properly protect public safety and property. Jim Iliff, a sergeant with the Dakota County Sheriff's Office, served as an emergency preparedness coordinator during some drills at the Saturday, Oct. 14, training.