Category Archives: Membership posts

Women farmland owners in southeast Minnesota invited to free conservation discussion and field tour July 23 in Northfield

Women Caring for the LandWomen who own or manage farmland in southeast Minnesota are invited to a free conservation discussion and field tour on Tuesday, July 23, at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 500 3rd St. West, Northfield, MN. Coffee and registration begin at 8:30 a.m. A free lunch is provided. The program will end with wrap-up and dessert at 3:30 p.m.

RSVP ASAP to me, Beth Kallestad, Cannon River Watershed Partnership, at (507) 786-3913, or email me at beth@crwp.net.

Women, Food and Agriculture Network is sponsoring the meeting as part of its Women Caring for the Land series, in collaboration with the Land Stewardship Project, Cannon River Watershed Partnership, and the Center for Rural Affairs. Funding comes from a Conservation Innovation Grant from the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service.

Women now own or co-own 25 to 50% of the farmland in the Midwest, and an increasing number of them are sole owners. “We have worked with women landowners for 15 years,” says Leigh Adcock, WFAN executive director. “They are some of the most dedicated conservationists in the region, but are typically overlooked with traditional conservation outreach, which is targeted at the tenant farmer.”

Women Caring for the Land meetings bring together women landowners in an informal, discussion-based learning format for a morning discussion, followed by a more in-depth look at the two or three topics of most interest. Female conservation professionals are on hand to answer questions and share resources. Following lunch, area conservationists lead a bus tour to view practices on the ground. Topics for discussion range from managing soil and water conservation, wildlife management and government cost-share programs, to how to talk with tenants about changing management practices.

“If I’d have known it would be so interesting, I would’ve brought a lot of friends along,” said one participant. Another said, “Thank you for explaining things in a way I could understand.”

For more conservation information from WFAN for women farmland owners, visit the program’s website, www.womencaringfortheland.org.

Celebrate State Water Trails – Paddle with CRWP

State_Water_Trails_50th42013 is the 50th anniversary of the Minnesota State Water Trails system, the first and largest in the nation.  State Water Trails are recreational routes on waterways that are managed for canoeing, kayaking, boating and camping.  They include a network of public water accesses, campsites and rest areas. They thrive on the support of local units of government, paddling clubs, nonprofits and outfitters.  In the Cannon River watershed we are fortunate to have two State Water Trails:  the Cannon River and the Straight River.

To celebrate this anniversary Cannon River Watershed Partnership is hosting some paddles on June 22nd and 23rd.  Join us for a leisurely paddle exploring our wonderful waters!

There is no cost to join us (unless you need to rent a canoe or kayak) but preregistration is required by June 20th so we can plan out shuttling needs.  Register by contacting Alana at (507) 786-3916 or alana@crwp.net.

No one under the age of 18 without adult supervision.  Life jackets/PFDs required. We will do a brief safety review at each site but paddling lessons are not part of this event.  CRWP volunteers will be there to help people get in and out of the water and manage shuttling.

More details and information on canoe and kayak rental can be found at www.crwp.net, click on News and Events.

June 22nd

Route 1 – Cannon River – Cannon River Wilderness Area Park to Northfield

Route 2 – Cannon River – Cannon Falls to Welch

June 23rd

Straight River – Clinton Falls to Medford

Trout stream feedback session

Rice Creek Trout SurveyOn June 4, Bridgewater Township invites the public to a feedback session on next steps to improve and protect Rice Creek (Spring Brook). The session will take place from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m. at the Town Hall, 500 Railway Street South, Dundas.

Rice Creek is the only trout stream in Rice County, but its health is threatened. The session will give you an opportunity to learn about the stream and provide input on plans to improve it. To spark your ideas, researchers will share findings from a two-year study of local brook trout, their habits and habitat.

How healthy is the trout population? Does their habitat need improvement? Where and when are pollutant levels highest? What is the source of cold water that trout prefer? What actions should we take and in what order? We will discuss these questions and more.

The Rice Creek Assessment Project is sponsored by Bridgewater Township, Cannon River Watershed Partnership, Saint Olaf College, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, and Trout Unlimited.  The project received a Clean Water Partnership grant from the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency.  The Rice Creek Concerned Citizens Group, Rice County, and other groups and volunteers are participating.

Introduction to kayaking: free CRWP course on May 22

CRWP-kayaking-flyerSpring is finally here.  It’s time to get out and enjoy our wonderful watershed.  The Cannon River Watershed Partnership (CRWP) invites you to learn to kayak in a relaxed setting on May 22nd – 6 PM – 7:30 PM.

Instructors: Marshall Wright (ACA instructor) and Betsy Wright.

Where: 5351 Elkton Trail, Faribault, MN.

Cost: FREE to CRWP members.  To become a member go to the CRWP website.

If you are not a member of CRWP, the cost per person is $10. Please register through CRWP by emailing beth@crwp.net or (507) 786-3913.

Class size is limited to 16 participants.

Kayaking is a popular recreational activity for people of all ages. To enjoy kayaking safely you need knowledge, training and the ability to make informed decisions about wind, weather and waves. Proper boat selection based on the type of activity you wish to pursue in your kayak is an important consideration.

We will explain the different types of kayaks and terminology used to describe boat features and attributes. We will cover materials and boat “fit” and the different paddle designs available. We will have several kayaks for attendees to sit in to get the feel of the cockpit. And we will have a wide range of safety equipment–beyond life jackets (“pfds”).

We will also provide referrals to reputable sources for on-the-water training, outfitting and group touring. If time allows, Marshall will demonstrate a basic kayaking skill set on the water (if the ice is out on Cannon Lake and the air temperature is comfortable for class attendees) or in the pool.

Experiencing the water from the seat a of kayak is special. You are actually “in” the water, which is a unique point of view. Kayaking allows access to areas that can’t be reached by motorized craft or by hiking. It’s a silent sport that leaves a light footprint on the environment. Come learn about kayaking!

Benjamin Percy book release party, May 20

redmoon_finalAuthor Ben Percy will read from his new novel, Red Moon, Monday, May 20, 7:30 pm at the Rueb ‘N’ Stein.
The Counterfactuals will play a set prior to the reading. Refreshments will be served.

This is certain to be one of the coolest events in which I’ve been involved.

In addition to the Red Moon, Ben is the author of two short story collections, The Language of Elk and Refresh, Refresh, a graphic novel based on the short story Refresh, Refresh, as well as the novel, The Wilding.

httpv://youtu.be/Gxw1U9lJpwQ

httpv://youtu.be/oIoE-WNz82k

Neil Young Tribute show at the Contented Cow, Sat. May 11

Rich-LarsonDown By The River PosterThe management of the Contented Cow in Northfield, MN announced today that they will host Down By the River: A Tribute to Neil Young on Saturday, May 11th, beginning at 4:00 in the afternoon. More than two dozen artists from Southern Minnesota and the Twin Cities will gather to perform the music of one of the most beloved and eclectic musicians of the past 50 years. Performers will play short 3-5 song sets that will span Young’s entire career.

Continuing a string of tribute events hosted by the Cow in recent years, the bill is stocked with talent.

“We have so many great musicians around here that we need to do something every now and then to showcase them,” said show producer Rich Larson of Left-Handed Entertainment. “When you pair that talent with a catalogue of songs that are as diverse as Neil Young’s, you’re bound to get an incredible evening.”

Larson says even Young’s non-fans should enjoy the event.

“Every now and then someone says they don’t like Neil Young because of his nasally voice. Well then, this is an opportunity for people to hear these incredible songs, performed by different voices. In fact, in some cases, you’ll hear them from some people who are incredible singers. Last year the Knightengales, the all-women a cappella group from Carleton College, stole the show when they performed at our Bob Dylan event. They’ll be back again this year, and I cannot wait to hear what they’ve come up with.”

And indeed, the bill does offer a diverse group of performers. Northfield folk/country singer “The Norwegian Cowboy” Jon Larson will be joined by venerable folk stalwart Bill McGrath, garage rockers Martin Anderson & The Goods, upstart punk rock group Some Kid’s Dad, and a host of others.

“It’s one of the things I love most about these shows,” said Larson. “We’ll have performers who are in their 60’s playing alongside college kids. And all of them are stunningly good.”

The show will also serve as the unofficial kickoff of the outdoor performance season.

“It’s been a long, long winter,” said Larson. “Nobody around here needs me to tell them that. But I’ve always said May is the month to be in this state. Everything is in bloom, the humidity is low, the bugs aren’t really out yet. The outdoor stage at the Cow sits just in front of the Cannon river. It’s a really beautiful setting, and their patio is so accommodating.  We expect that we’ll have one of those spectacular May days where the weather is perfect, the music will be fantastic, and everybody will have an unforgettable time.”

Neil Young is a two-time Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductee who is known for his eclectic, diverse songwriting. He’s best known for alternately playing soft, folk based songs like After the Gold Rush and Harvest Moon, and ear rattling hard rock like Cinnamon Girl and Rockin’ in the Free World. He has influenced countless artists, including Elvis Costello, Dave Matthews, Sonic Youth, and Pearl Jam. His work with his backing band Crazy Horse earned him the nickname “The Godfather of Grunge.”

Down By the River: A Tribute to Neil Young will be Saturday, May 11th, beginning at 4 p.m., and running deep into the evening. The Contented Cow is located at 302B Division Street in downtown Northfield. For further information, contact the Contented Cow at (507) 663-1351 or Rich Larson at (612) 756-0490.

Featured books at Monkey See Monkey Read bookstore: Ordinary Grace; Orphan Train

Ordinary Grace

From New York Times bestselling author William Kent Krueger comes a brilliant new novel about a young man, a small town, and murder in the summer of 1961.

Ordinary Grace“It’s been a while since a story forced me to abandon my plans for the day. This book has all the elements of a great mystery.  The careful plot, skillful placement of evidence, and trajectory of suspense are all immensely satisfying. What sets this story apart is the unsettling detail of family love and the experience of grief.” –Ann Woodbeck, Excelsior Bay Books

“ Set in the early 60’s, it’s a story told from the perspective of 13-year-old Frank Drum when tragedy comes to call on his family. The author has really captured the era, the small town atmosphere, the Drum family and all the other memorable characters that make up this brilliant novel.Ordinary Grace will stay with me for a long time. ” Kathleen Eddy, Manager, Valley Bookseller, Stillwater, MN

All the dying that summer began with the death of a child . . .

New Bremen, Minnesota, 1961. The Twins were playing their debut season, ice-cold root beers were selling out at the soda counter of Halderson’s Drugstore, and Hot Stuff comic books were a mainstay on every barbershop magazine rack. It was a time of innocence and hope for a country with a new, young president. But for thirteen-year-old Frank Drum it was a grim summer in which death visited frequently and assumed many forms. Accident. Nature. Suicide. Murder.

Frank begins the season preoccupied with the concerns of any teenage boy, but when tragedy unexpectedly strikes his family, which includes his Methodist minister father, his passionate, artistic mother, Juilliard-bound older sister, and wise-beyond-his-years kid brother—he finds himself thrust into an adult world full of secrets, lies, adultery, and betrayal, suddenly called upon to demonstrate a maturity and gumption beyond his years.

WKKTold from Frank’s perspective forty years after that fateful summer,Ordinary Grace is a brilliantly moving account of a boy standing at the door of his young manhood, trying to understand a world that seems to be falling apart around him. It is an unforgettable novel about discovering the terrible price of wisdom and the enduring grace of God.

William Kent Krueger is the award-winning author of twelve previous Cork O’Connor novels, including Northwest Angle and Trickster’s Point, as well as the novel Ordinary Grace. He lives in the Twin Cities with his family.


Orphan Train

Orphan Train“I was so moved by this book. I loved Molly and Vivian, two brave, difficult, true-hearted women who disrupt one another’s lives in beautiful ways, and loved journeying with them, through heartbreak and stretches of history I’d never known existed, out of loneliness toward family and home.” –Marisa de los Santos, New York Times-bestselling author ofBelong to Me and Falling Together

“I loved this book: its absorbing back-and-forth story, its vivid history, its eminently loveable characters. ORPHAN TRAIN wrecked my heart and made me glad to be literate.” –Monica Wood, author of When We Were the Kennedys

“Christina Baker Kline writes exquisitely about two unlikely friends . . . each struggling to transcend a past of isolation and hardship. ORPHAN TRAIN will hold you in its grip as their fascinating tales unfold.” –Cathy Marie Buchanan, New York Times-bestselling author of The Painted Girls

Detailed and beautifully drawn, Orphan Train illuminates a little-known part of America’s history:  Between 1854 and 1929, so-called “orphan trains” transported more than 200,000 orphaned, abandoned, and homeless children between the ages of 2 and 14 from the East Coast to the Midwest for foster care and adoption. But their treatment often amounted to indentured servitude. Chosen first were infants, for more traditional adoptions, and older boys, for their manual labor; adolescent girls were typically selected last. While some children quickly found love and acceptance, many walked a harder road.

Christina Baker KlineOrphan Train is set in modern-day Maine and early twentieth-century Minnesota.  Kline spends every summer on the coast of Maine and has built a large fan base in the area.  She has also spent 25 years traveling to Minnesota where her husband’s family lives, and has strong ties to the orphan-train riders’ community in the state.

Christina Baker Kline is the author of five novels, including Bird in Handand The Way Life Should Be. Writer-in-Residence at Fordham University from 2007-2011, Kline is a recent recipient of a Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation Fellowship and several research fellowships (to Ireland and Minnesota), and has been a Writer-in-Residence at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts. She lives with husband and three sons in Montclair, New Jersey, and spends as much time as possible in northern Minnesota and on the coast of Maine, where she grew up.


The books are available at Monkey See Monkey Read in downtown Northfield.

CRWP to offer rain barrel workshops

blue barrel-1RainBarrelWinnersSteeleFair_Aug2011-1Help clean up the Cannon River and collect free soft water for your flower gardens.  Join the Cannon River Watershed Partnership in learning about runoff and the benefits of rain barrels for water conservation and gardening.  Go home with a fully assembled 55-gallon plastic rain barrel and the knowledge that YOU are doing something for clean water.  

Northfield workshops will be held:

April 20th at 1:00 PM at First UCC Church, 300 Union Street as part of the Earth Day Celebration.  Register by emailing beth@crwp.net or call (507) 786-3913. Cost is $40.

April 30th at 7 PM at  the Northfield Community Resource Center, Room 225. Register through Northfield Community Services, #3275-W13A,  Cost is $45.

Space is limited so register soon!   For costs, dates and locations of workshops in other cities go to Cannon River Watershed Partnership or call (507) 786-8400.

Celebrate spring with the Cannon River Watershed Partnership

While it may not look much like spring today it’s coming soon – really!  Cannon River Watershed Partnership has some fabulous opportunities for you to get outdoors, explore the watershed and celebrate spring. 

Introduction to Kayaking – April 17th – 6 PM

Instructors: Marshall Wright (ACA instructor) and Betsy Wright.

Where: 5351 Elkton Trail, Faribault, MN.

Cost: FREE to CRWP members.  To become a member go to the CRWP website.

If you are not a member of CRWP, the cost per person is $10. Please register through CRWP by emailing beth@crwp.net or (507) 786-3913.

Class size is limited to 16 participants.

Details on the CRWP website Calendar.


Earth Day 5K Fun Run/Walk – April 20th

crwp-earth-day-5k-logo 1Time: 8:00 AM (registration), 9:00 AM (Run/Walk)

Registration: $15.00 by April 12, 2013, $18.00 after April 12th

Location: Sakatah Singing Hills Trail at Shager Park,

Faribault, MN. The park is located on Hwy 60 ~ 2 miles west of the Faribault city limits.

T-shirts: Will be available to the first 100 registrants

Registration: www.crwp.net/earth-day-5k/

A time clock will display times at finish, but no official times will be kept.

Proceeds benefit the Cannon River Watershed Partnership.