I went to see Cole Porter’s ANYTHING GOES tonight at Burnsville High School.  It was a fun evening. An entertaining story with great music. The cast is very talented and did a really good job with this production.

It is nice to see this musical revived. ANYTHING GOES was on Broadway in the 1930’s and was later made into a movie.

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The Eagan Food Truck Festival

I went to the Eagan Food Truck Festival on Friday evening. This year, it was held at the Eagan Festival Grounds. There were over twenty trucks on the site representing a host of different cultures and foods. Lots of interesting food choices!  I was just amazed at the number of people in attendance and the long lines, but everyone seemed to be enjoying the event.

There was also live music to listen to once you settled down with your selections. Nice way to end the week.

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Reopening of State Capitol – all weekend

Don’t forget there’s an entire weekend’s worth of fun:  Capitol Restoration Celebrations this Summer!

After four years of repairs and restorations, our State Capitol is now fully open to the public once again! This beautiful building has been returned to its former glory, and there will be events this August to celebrate this beautiful edifice of our democracy. You and your family are encouraged to attend any of the fun events that are planned.

It is the People’s House – remember that!

On Friday morning we had the ribbon cutting ceremony and a color guard presentation as we reopened the State Capitol.


Most of the events are free, or offered at very low cost. You can learn more by visiting

WHEN: Friday, Saturday & Sunday Aug 11-13

WHERE: Minnesota State Capitol Grounds
      75 Rev Dr Martin Luther King Jr Blvd
      Saint Paul, MN 55155

Learn more about tours, live music, children’s events, and fireworks by

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Community Forum: Homelessness in Dakota County

Last night, I attended the Community Forum: Homelessness in Dakota County at Shepherd of the Valley Church in Apple Valley.  There were well over two hundred people in attendance. Ann Ryberg, Communities of Faith Volunteer Organizer, went over the temporary shelter effort that took place this past winter.  The Dakota County Housing Manager went over the activities to again have a temporary shelter this winter, November 1 is the target opening date. The County put out a bid for a service provider and Matrix Housing Services was chosen. This is intended to be an overnight shelter with extended hours during times of extreme cold.

Representative from Matrix Housing went over expectations and needs. For suggestions or information, they can be contacted at shelter@matrixhousingservices. org

The Shelter Leadership Work Group is working on options for a permanent shelter that should be presented to the Dakota Board of Commissioners by October.  This has been a need for some time.


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Neighborhood Night Out 2017

August 2 was a lovely evening to be out and celebrating Neighborhood Night Out in Eagan and Night to Unite in Burnsville. My appreciation to all who participated in these events. These activities provided a great opportunity for neighbors to talk and also learn more about community resources.

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The Hunchback of Notre Dame

I went to see The Hunchback of Notre Dame at Eagan High School tonight.  It was a musical version with songs from the Disney film and it was outstanding.  I was particularly impressed with the costumes for the gargoyles and statues.  We are so fortunate to have this level of talent in our community.

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Standing Up to Wall Street and Anti-Worker Agenda

The income gap in this country is growing larger and those in the lower income brackets are dealing with increasing challenges and stress.

The wage difference between corporate executives and workers has increased dramatically. In addition, the gap between executive compensation in the United States far exceeds that of executive compensation in other countries. Why should that be acceptable?

We need to be more mindful about merger outcomes as well as address market concentration and those that have excessive power. Most certainly we should create an environment where large corporations think twice before taking actions that hurt workers or the environment.

It used to be that as workers’ productivity increased, their salaries would increase. No longer; productivity is increasing, but salaries are stagnant. Why?

If you recall, the time when our country had a large middle class that was able to participate in the success of the economy was also when the unions exercised more power.

The huge burden caused by excessive student debt also needs to be addressed.

If we believe people are our most important resource, shouldn’t we make sure all our citizens have access to good health care? Other countries seem to be able to do this, and yet they pay less for health care then we do and have better outcomes.

Some suggestions to bring relief from these problems could include closing tax loopholes. Taxpayers should not have to subsidize excessive compensation for corporate executives. These and other practices that rig the economy so that only a few benefit needs to stop. We need to reverse the runaway inequality.

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Jim Smith

Jim Smith passed away on July 3, 2017. There will be a gathering from 4-8:00 P.M. on Monday, July 10 at Klecatsky & Sons Eagan Chapel (1580 Century Point, Eagan) and one hour prior to the 11:00 A.M. Mass on Tuesday at St. John Neumann.

Jim and his family have been part of the Eagan community for many years. He was on the Eagan City Council from 1972 t0 1987. And when I came onto the Council, he was someone I could always count on for help. He never stopped caring about our community and will be missed.

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The New St. Croix Crossing

On Monday afternoon, I had the opportunity to tour the new bridge over the St. Croix.  It is an impressive structure that is designed for 100 years.  It is about a mile long, about a hundred feet wide, and slightly over 100 feet over the water.  The bridge connects Oak Park Heights, Minnesota with St. Joseph, Wisconsin

The bridge should open later this summer. For more information, see the website:

The Stillwater Lift Bridge will be converted to bicycle/pedestrian use only.


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Remembering Thurgood Marshall

I saw the play THURGOOD tonight at the Lowry Lab Theater in St. Paul. James Craven does a marvelous job of portraying Thurgood Marshall and talking about some of the highlights of the Supreme Court Justice’s life. This is an Illusion Theatre production.

Thurgood Marshall was appointed to the Supreme Court on June 13, 1967 by President Johnson.  On June 13, MPR did a very informative program on Justice Marshall to commemorate this occasion.

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