Northfield Shares, a community foundation centered on philanthropy, volunteerism and collaborative leadership, announced that the Engeseth-Rinde Restoration Fund has become the organization’s first $1 million fund. The growth was due in large part to a generous additional contribution from Don Nelson, who established the endowed donor advised fund in 2016. Executive Director Mike Krance said Don had a vision for his philanthropic and environmental legacies that included native prairie restoration and land stewardship. In establishing the fund, Nelson worked with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources
(DNR) and Northfield Shares to sell the farm to the DNR. He then donated the proceeds to Northfield Shares to create the endowment which will support restoration, research and education activities. Full details: Nfld shares announcement
After referendum failure, District looks for facilities recommendations
The Northfield School District continues to study their facilities plan, now with a 35 member group representing a cross-section of stakeholders including agriculture, business, parents, working professionals and a student. Superintendent Dr. Matt Hillmann said the group met for the first of three planned meetings. He said they had a great discussion looking backward, reflecting on the plan that was presented in November asking the group was resonated, what didn’t and what were “deal breakers”. The 2nd meeting was about looking ahead. The final meeting is tonight, Hillmann’s looking for recommendations. He said that could range from not doing anything right now and go back and look at the plan to picking various parts of the plan or anything in between. We’ll be hearing more from Hillmann coming up.
Elko New Market safest City in MN and 8th in the U.S.
The community of Elko New Market was recently named the safest city in Minnesota and is now designated as a top-10 safest city in America, according to Safewise, a home security company that uses FBI crime reports to compare rates of violent crimes and property crimes. Elko/New Market has 4800 residents and reported no violent crimes and just 2.7 property crimes per 1,000 people. Their overall crime rate dropped by 15 percent between 2015 and 2016. The small town is the only Minnesota city named on the list and came in at number 8 overall. City leaders attribute the ranking to community-oriented policing and vigilant residents who call police if something’s amiss. In fact, local police officers are so popular they’re invited to children’s birthday parties and neighborhood cook-offs. They’ll also leave notes for residents to forget to close their garage doors at night.
Burning restrictions in place
Because of high winds predicted, some dry vegetation and a low relative humidity forecast, the MN DNR and Sheriff’s office is recommending no open burning other than recreational fires. Therefore, all burning permits issued in Rice County are hereby suspended on the authority of the Rice County Sheriff until further notice. Only recreational campfires and grilling are allowed. Sheriff Troy Dunn encourages using extreme caution and good judgment before starting recreational fires or grilling.