Nathan Hansen has been a reporter and editor with the Farmington Independent and the Rosemount Town Pages since 1997. He is very tall.
- Member for
- 2 years 3 weeks
Last weekend I marched into a local department store armed with a 30 percent off coupon. I was ready to do my Christmas shopping. I know you're thinking, "Christmas shopping in October?" But the Halloween merchandise was already on clearance by October 1, so there was no shortage of holiday merchandise to choose from. The glowing trees were already decorated, sparkling at the front of the store. A large assortment of ornaments hung from silver racks clustered around them.
Traditions are important in Farmington. Homecoming is the perfect example of it and you can probably see it almost every time you pass a junior or senior's house. Toilet paper in the trees, shaving cream on the garage door and in the driveway, with the occasional paintball splatter as well. The parents most likely are the least to care as long as their kid cleans it up because it probably happened to them when they were kids, too. Whether they were the ones tee-peed or they were doing the tee-peeing. Although when something in their yard gets broken, that's a whole other story.
The Farmington School Board has a pair of meeting scheduled for Monday. The board will hold a special meeting at 4:30 p.m. in the little theater at Boeckman Middle School to discuss a report on district facilities.
I spent my junior year of high school in Sweden. It was a wonderful experience. I learned a lot about foreign cultures. About life. About meatballs. It wasn't perfect, I'll admit. I asked everyone I met about that bikini team that was so popular in all the beer ads at the time, but nobody seemed to know what I was talking about. They couldn't even point me in the direction of the JV team, which I believe mostly stuck to one-pieces. The lack of swimsuit-clad supermodels aside, though, the year was filled with remarkable opportunities.
A popular north-Farmington coffee shop is going to go through a transformation in the weeks ahead. The Ugly Mug has always been more than a typical coffee shop. With beer and wine on the menu, as well as hearty sandwiches, the business was designed as a mix of coffee shop, restaurant and bar. Now new owners Kathy Stronach and Dan Radmacher are going to push those distinctions even further.
Once again this weekend Farmington residents will have a chance to get scared for a good cause. On Friday and Saturday the Support our Troops Haunted House will return for the third year to the Dakota County Fairgrounds for its third straight October. The event raises money to support deployed soldiers and their families. The group behind haunted house has so far sent more than 250 care packages to deployed soldiers, sent Christmas trees and gifts to Iraq and Afghanistan and sent school supplies for Iraqi children.
Republican candidates in District 36 got an opportunity to speak directly to voters last week without any input from the other side of the ballot. DFL candidates Steve Quist, who is running for the Senate seat being vacated by Pat Pariseau, and Sigrid Iversen, who is facing incumbent Pat Garofalo in the 36B House race, were absent from the Sept. 29 forum sponsored by the Dakota County Regional Chambers of Commerce. Both said they informed organizers as soon as they got the invitation that they had a conflict that night. Quist was teaching confirmation classes at his church.
Farmington City Council candidates' views of how the city manages its money seem to depend on the side of the council table on which they currently sit. City council incumbents Christy Jo Fogarty and Steve Wilson spent much of an hour-long forum Sept. 29 defending the city's spending decisions, while their challengers complained about "wasteful" and "uncontrolled" spending. Lenny Hall, who described himself as the only candidate whose own economic status puts him near the poverty level, complained about the city's recent purchase of a $60,000 play structure for Rambling River Park.
When you're responsible for writing a weekly column you learn quickly that inspiration can strike at anytime. Riding a bike? Inspiration! Reading a book? Inspiration! Watching a situational comedy on ABC? Well, probably not. But everybody needs a break now and then. Inspiration is tricky, though. Ideas that seem wonderful and perfect and permanent one minute can disappear entirely the next.
Candidates for city and state offices got a chance to speak to voters Wednesday night in a forum sponsored by the Dakota County Regional Chambers of Commerce. The forum was for candidates in the city council, Senate District 36 and House District 36B races. Much of the forum focused on issues important to business owners, and council candidates talked a lot about the need to rein in spending. Both of the Republican candidates in the state races got a chance to speak largely uninterrupted, as neither DFL candidate in those races appeared.