Tag Archives: Valley Pond Townhome Association

City installs pet waste signs at entrances to Hidden Valley Park

At a recent Valley Pond Townhome Association meeting (where I live), we discussed whether the Association should pay to have the City of Northfield install one or more pet waste stations (example here) along the trail in Hidden Valley Park

The Board decided that a better first step would be to ask the City to install "Please Clean Up After Your Pet" signs to see if that solved the problem.

pet waste sign at entrance to Hidden Valley Park Robbie Wigley, inserting pet waste bags on sign Robbie Wigley, inserting pet waste bags on sign
A couple weeks ago a City crew installed signs at the three entrances/exits to the park. Our Association cost: $54.  Robbie has been stuffing pet waste bags into the holes in the signs.  And people are using them.

Cool public/private collaboration, eh?

VFW hosting a benefit for the family of Don Mills today

Shannon Mills, Robbie WigleyDon Mills with daughter TaylorOur Valley Pond Townhouse Association neighbor, Shannon Mills (pictured at left with my wife Robbie), has had a lot to deal with lately. 

Her townhouse burned down in 2009, she lost her job at Froggy Bottoms when it closed due to flooding last fall, and in February, her husband, Don Mills, died of colon cancer.

According to this blog post on KYMN: VFW hosts benefit for Mills family Saturday:

The Northfield VFW hosts a benefit for the family of Don Mills this Saturday. Don passed away in February after battling cancer, leaving behind wife Shannon and three children, Taylor, Christopher and Landon…

Saturday’s benefit will feature a variety of activities, including a spaghetti dinner at 5:00, a beer bash at 6:00 and a Texas Hold ‘em tournament that begins at 8:00. There will also be a silent auction starting at 4:00. If you’d like to make a cash donation to the family, you can do so at the First National Bank of Northfield. The benefit gets underway Saturday at the Northfield VFW.

Snowmobilers in the city limits. An isolated incident?

snowmobile tracks in Hidden Valley Park snowmobile tracks in Hidden Valley Park snowmobile tracks in Hidden Valley Park

snowmobile tracks in Hidden Valley Park snowmobile tracks in Hidden Valley Park
On Sunday night, two snowmobiles went through Hidden Valley Park where it abuts the back yards of the Valley Pond townhouses on the south edge of the pond.  They then cut through the back yards of two of our neighbors. I took the above photos of the snowmobile tracks yesterday afternoon.

Robbie phoned the Northfield Police Department’s non-emergency number to report the incident.  The person she spoke mentioned that city ordinance did allow for snowmobile use within the city limits to get to and from designated snowmobile trails.  So I checked the Northfield municipal code and found out that it’s pretty restrictive. These sleds were definitely in violation:

Sec. 78-207. – Unlawful operation.

It is unlawful for any person to operate a snowmobile, for recreational purposes, within the city, except as provided in section 78-208.

(Code 1986, § 735:05)

Sec. 78-208. – Lawful operation.

It shall be lawful to operate a snowmobile within the city only when:

(1) Traveling to or from designated snowmobile trails on roadways designated to travel to and from designated snowmobile trails. Those roadways are Maple Street, Ames Street, Jefferson Road, roadways which run parallel to any railroad tracks and any roadway that is the most direct route to such streets, on the ditch bottom or outside of trunk county state aid and county highways when highways are within the city;

(2) Operating at speeds not to exceed 20 miles per hour; and

(3) Obeying all motor vehicle laws and ordinances.

In the three years we’ve lived here, this is the first time this has happened, to my knowledge.

Is anyone else experiencing problems with snowmobiles within the city limits?

Any members of the Waterford Warriors Snowmobile Club reading this blog who could comment about the club’s rider education and self-policing efforts?

It’s a winter wonderland out there. Get out and enjoy it.

Cross country ski trails in the Lower Carleton Arb Cross country ski trails in the Lower Carleton Arb Cross country ski trails in the Lower Carleton Arb Cross country ski trails in the Upper Carleton Arb
It was heaven on the cross country ski trails in the Carleton Arb yesterday morning. The college has groomed some trails for skate-skiing in the Upper Arb and some for Nordic skiing in the Lower Arb.  And of course, there are many places to go off the groomed trails.

Snowshoe and ski trails around Hidden Valley Park Snowshoe and ski trails around Hidden Valley Park Snowshoe and ski trails around Hidden Valley Park Snowshoe and ski trails around Hidden Valley Park
Like many people in Northfield fortunate to live adjacent to one of our fabulous City parks, those of us in the Valley Pond Townhome Association can go out our back doors and snowshoe and ski around Hidden Valley Park.

Carmen Sevcik: High Crop Hill to Valley Pond

Carmen Sevcik Carmen Sevcik's school bus mobile
I met Carmen Sevcik a few weeks ago during the controlled burn of Hidden Valley Park. She had just moved into one of the Valley Pond townhomes where we live.

Norman and Carmen Sevcik profileCarmen’s known to many in the area because she and her husband Norm collected high crop tractors, especially Farmall, Case, and International Harvester. (Her dad, Palmer Fossum, collected vintage Ford tractors.) The Sevcik farm in Wheatland Township was known as High Crop Hill and many of their tractors were featured in the book, The Big Book of Farmall Tractors. See the screenshot of the profile from the book on the right. Norman died in 2008.

Carmen’s a club officer for Rice County Steam and Gas Engines and is also well-known to many Northfield kids, as she’s driven a school bus for many years for Benjamin Bus. That’s a school bus mobile on her porch.

Photo album: spring burn, Hidden Valley Park

I woke up from my nap to the smell of smoke yesterday afternoon. A crew hired by the City of Northfield was doing a controlled burn of Hidden Valley Park. (The park is surrounded on three sides by the units of the Valley Pond Townhome Association where Robbie and I live.)

See the album of 16 photos (8 fire, 8 post-fire), the large slideshow, or this small slideshow:

Continue reading Photo album: spring burn, Hidden Valley Park

Photo album: Hidden Valley Park townhouse fire

Fire destroyed much of Al Linder’s townhouse adjacent to Hidden Valley Park last evening, part of the Valley Pond Townhome Association. His townhouse is on Hidden Valley Drive, right around the corner from our townhouse.  Al was not at home when the fire broke out but arrived shortly afterwards.

The smoke damage displaced residents in the two units to the north of his, Don and Shannon Mills, and George and Leslie Selvig. Sandy Pieri, a volunteer with the Rice – LeSueur Red Cross Chapter and a townhouse owner on the same block, was on hand to help arrange temporary housing for the three affected homeowers.

The Northfield News posted a story, Fire engulfs townhome, on their web site last night at about 8:30.

I was in the Cities but Robbie took these photos. See the album of a dozen photos, the large slideshow, or this small slideshow.

Northfield neighborhoods join the blogosphere

Valley Pond Townhome Assoc. Northfield Eastside Neighborhood Association Two new neighborhood blogs have joined Northfield’s blogosphere in recent months. The Northfield Eastside Neighborhood Association (NESNA) launched its blogsite in December under the stewardship of Ed Lufkin. See the Dec. 23 Northfield News article titled New site aims to connect eastside residents. And last month, the Valley Pond Townhome Association (VPTA) launched its blogsite in the Hidden Valley Park neighborhood. Robbie Wigley is the chief blogger there, with some marginal support from her main squeeze.

Friends of Way Park was the pioneer Northfield neighborhood blog starting in 2005 but has been dormant since last summer. Are there other neighborhood blogs out there that I don’t know about?