Michelle Leonard started covering the Farmington community in June, 1994. Michelle earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Mass Communications: News-Editorial from Mankato State University in 1991. She is an active member of the Farmington American Legion Auxiliary Unit 189, and acts as the volunteer coordinator for the Minnesota Newspaper Museum which is open annually during the Minnesota State Fair. She has earned Minnesota Newspaper Association awards in Investigative Reporting, Local News Coverage, Feature Photography and Column Writing.
- Member for
- 1 year 8 months
On May 17, the Farmington City Council presented Heritage Preservation Awards to Farmington residents Gary and Cynthia Raynor, owners of the home at 421 Oak St., and to former Heritage Preservation Commission member Edgar Samuelson. According to city of Farmington administrative services director Lisa Shadick, the HPC has given out the awards since 2000. In that time, 13 locations and individuals around the city have received the award. The Raynors were recognized for their attentiveness to their home and for serving as a model for preservation efforts in their home.
Last year, Farmington's Warrior to Citizen group held a picnic for the families of men and women in the military. It was at the Dakota County Fairgrounds, and about 160 family members turned out for the occasion. It was, by all measures, a success - so much so, another Military Family Day picnic is planned for this weekend. And organizers are hoping to have just as many - if not more - military families join in the fun. "It's just an event to bring military families together to have a fun day," said Warrior to Citizen founder Annette Kuyper.
We're coming up on a couple of really big, important weekends in the world of military and veterans affairs. This next Saturday is Armed Forces Day, and a World War II reenactment event has been scheduled at the Dakota County Fairgrounds to coincide with the holiday. The following weekend, Warrior to Citizen will hold its second annual Military Family Day at the Dakota County Fairgrounds. And the weekend after is one of the biggies -- Memorial Day. But along with all of those holidays and activities comes another -- Buddy Poppy Day and Poppy Day, two separate but equally important days.
The tarp came up. There were two cars, smashed nose-to-nose. A body lay on the ground, another on the hood of one of the cars, sprawled through the windshield. And then the panicked voice called out for Maria. It was a mother's voice, a mother trying to determine whether her family was okay after a crash. A drunk driving crash. Last Friday morning, Farmington High School juniors and seniors witnessed, hopefully, the closest thing they will ever come to the scene of a double-fatality caused by a drunk driver.
Inspectors still aren't quite sure what the cloudy substance is that showed up last month in an inlet to the Vermillion River, but they think they might be on the right track to determining its origin. A park visitor first noticed the milky water April 21 at the base of a storm sewer pipe near the Kuchera Entrance to Rambling River Park.
When Peter Herlofsky started his new job on May 1, 2006, he had his work cut out for him. He came into the Farmington city administrator position after a few years of turmoil. Over the previous five years, Farmington had gone through two city administrators and three interim administrators. The city of Farmington and School District 192 were in litigation over the site for the new high school. The building boom of earlier in the decade was waning at a fast pace. Farmington was in a state of change.
The Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration has cited Feely Elevator for seven violations following the Feb. 4, 2010 accident which led to manager Mark Malecha being partially buried by corn. The citations include $7,750 in fines. Feely Elevator is contesting the citations. All are listed under OSHA's "serious" category. The accident occurred when Malecha entered a grain elevator to try to dislodge a clog. The corn below Malecha shifted, causing him to become covered to his chest. He was trapped for eight hours, but successfully rescued.
It was a small group of nine people that met Monday afternoon in the North Trail Elementary School media center. A small group that hopes to accomplish a huge task. The group included a couple of School District 192 representatives, a few members of the Farmington Lions Club and representatives from the Farmington VFW, American Legion and Warrior to Citizen. The meeting was the first of maybe half a dozen that will be spread out between now and Nov. 4.
They were there. The mothers. The grandmothers. They were there, wearing yellow ribbons pinned over their hearts. Each ribbon bore the name of a loved one who is serving or has served his or her country. Some wore pins with the faces of sons and daughters in uniform. Others wore sweaters of red, white and blue. Still others had sweatshirts proclaiming their affiliation: "USAF." "A Proud Navy Mom." This was the Warrior to Citizen Mother's Luncheon Saturday. In one corner of the social hall at St. Michael's Catholic Church, the Red Hat Ladies chorus sang standard favorite patriotic tunes.
Now that he's retired, Ted Dau has the time to sit back and visit. To tell his stories. To reflect on his 30 years as a police officer. He has time to realize the impact one person can have on an entire community. Of course, Dau being the type of guy he is, will gladly share his stories, but he'll humbly shrug off the kudos. He was just doing his job, he'll tell you. And it was a job he loved to do. Hired as a reserve officer while he was still in college at the University of Minnesota-Duluth, Dau joined the Farmington Police Department on April 8, 1980.