Friday, April 30, 2010

Reading books for 1,000 kids

On Wednesday morning, the Eagan Rotary club began its annual reading program at the Eagan Community center. The first of five groups consisted of 274 first graders from 4 elementary schools gathered in the ECC gymnasium to meet the Minnesota Twins baseball mascot, "TC Bear." Judging by the loud voices, many of them are Twins baseball fans. Then students broke into 20 groups of about 20 kids where an Eagan Rotarian or other volunteer read two books. Dentist Glenn Perkins read to this group. Bused back to their schools, all the kids each later received their own book.

The second morning session welcomed 261 kids from 3 schools at the ECC. On Thursday, 99 kids at Oakridge Elementary School enjoyed the reading and book handout program. Finally, on Friday, 290 kids from 2 schools gathered at Red Pine Elementary School or Wescott Library for their reading program. Read kids read!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Antique trash or treasure?

Nearly 80 Seniors gathered at the Eagan Community Center on Saturday afternoon to have their antiques evaluated. Antique experts Bonnie Lindberg & James Marrinan from "Appraisal Specialists" gave their opinions and valuations for a large assortment of old items. This woman had her Scandinavian woodcarving appraised.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Lakes of Eagan series #2

Blackhawk Lake, one of Eagan's 16 primary lakes, is situated north of Difley Road and west of Highway 35E. The lake has a pier, canoe launch areas, a fishing deck and a bridge along the south shore. Some lake statistics> size: 37.7 acres; maximum depth: 10 feet; fish species: Bluegill, Bullhead, Crappie, Largemouth Bass, Northern Pike and Perch. About 8,000 acres of Eagan drains to Blackhawk Lake through the storm drainage system.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

On my honor ...

On Tuesday, April 20, the Eagan City Council held their bi-weekly meeting at the Eagan Municipal Center building. After the Pledge of Allegiance, new Eagan Police Officer Eric Tessmer was sworn in with Police Chief McDonald presenting him. Officer Tessmer grew up on a dairy farm in Minnesota, graduated from University Minnesota Duluth and later did his police training and prison work in Arizona. He was glad to move back to Minnesota with his family to his roots.
Congratulations and welcome to Eagan!

Monday, April 26, 2010

Where glory, peace & love meet

These blooming crab trees smell heavenly along both sides of Glory Drive which leads up to Peace Church. I love Spring and the lovely blooms and their blossom scents!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Rugby @ the ECC fields

The University of Minnesota Rugby team and an area men's rugby team called the "Eastside Banshees" met at the fields behind the Eagan Community Center for matches on Saturday afternoon.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

"Weighing in" to fight!

I drove 30 minutes from Eagan to downtown Minneapolis to the Target Center. As an invited "local Media person of interest," I collected my credentials and joined the other photographers and live cameramen to document Friday evening's "weigh-in" of the fighters for Saturday night's "XKL Evolution II - Mayhem in Minneapolis" event. The Xtreme Kombat League 's mixed martial arts sport will explode into action with 10 bouts fought in the metal cage in the center of Target Arena. I surprised the Japanese female fighter and her friend by asking them some questions in Japanese! Ganbatte kudasai!

Here's the Official XKL Evolution II Fight Card:
155 lbs - Gideon Ray vs Derrick "The Eraser" Noble
170 lbs - Dave "The Warrior" Menne vs Dave Strasser
170 lbs - Brock "Raging Bull" Larson vs Brian Green
145 lbs - Shana Olsen vs Yoko Takahashi from Tokyo
(#6 Female in the world & pioneer of Women's MMA in Japan)
145 lbs - Surgio Gomez vs Chaz Haag
170 lbs - Matt Delanoit vs Ray Steinbeiss
Heavy - Brad Kohler vs Travis "The Iron Man" Fulton
145 lbs Nate Schut vs Brian "The Duke" Geraghty
Heavy - Travis "Diesel" Wiuff vs Jeff "Snowman" Monson
185 lbs - Isaiah "The striking Viking" Larson vs Brendan Seguin

Tickets available thru "Ticketmaster."

Friday, April 23, 2010

Sweepin' Pelican

Spring arrived in Eagan and so have the street sweepers. Time to sweep the streets and clean up our city. I think the driver was gone on his lunch break?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Earth Day!

It says "Earth Day" on my office desk calender today. My wife called and said, "The park & ride is full - how about that for an Earth Day blog posting?" So, I stopped there on my way home for lunch. I stood in the back of some guy's pick-up truck for this average quality camera phone photo. Go GREEN!

Her new pink bicycle

Spring has sprung in Eagan and it was time to buy our oldest daughter a new bike. That meant our second daughter got her older sister's bike and the youngest daughter got the middle daughter's bike.
Need a new bike? Head over to Penn Cycle at 2290 Cliff Road in Eagan - they pedal great bikes!

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Lakes of Eagan series #1

If one hikes down behind the Eagan Art House and Patrick Eagan Park off Lexington Avenue, then one would find this small lake. No sign proclaims the name of this lake. Any name ideas?

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Rices, spices & more

If you want a wide choice of rice varieties and specialty Asian cooking foods, then stop by the Asian Market on Cliff Road just east of Cedar Avenue. You can also buy Powerball lottery tickets there, too. Wednesday's lottery drawing is for $252 Million!

Get fit in Eagan

Meet Marshall Grange the fitness coordinator of the fitness center at the Eagan Community Center. Marshall and his staff can help personalize a fitness program for you and coach you through the exercises. Members pay a reasonable monthly fee to use the cardiovascular and weight training equipment; gyms for basketball, volleyball and other open gym activities; an indoor running track; and aerobic or other classes. Have the friendly trainers help you get fit and feel better!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Posing dancers

This weekend was a busy flurry of photos at the dance studio. All the tap, jazz, ballet and hip hop classes posed for the cameraman. With dance lines included, more than 200 groups were captured on film!
Good luck with your upcoming dance recitals!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Gas for Harley

This cool, friendly dude was filling up his Harley Davidson bike at our neighborhood gas station. The snow's gone and it's warming up!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Change of seasons

These Polaris snowmobiles were covered up and ready to be stored away for the summer. Glad to see no more snow but greening up grass instead! Time to get out the campers for Spring, Summer and Fall camping!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Panda in Eagan!

Panda Express held its grand opening on Thursday with loads of balloons, lunch goers and yummy Chinese gourmet food! Even a "real" Panda greeted the guests and posed for my camera! Started 25 years ago in Los Angeles, the Panda Express opened its Eagan site as their 5th location in the Twin Cities among the 1,300 locales across the US. Veggies are cute fresh daily and for under $6 your plate gets heaped with a side dish and two savory entrees! Try their orange chicken and honey walnut shrimp!

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Statue of Liberty

Driving along Duckwood Drive in Eagan, I spotted this "Statue of Liberty" waving to passersby. He was trying to encourage people to use the "Liberty Tax Service" at 1340 Duckwood Drive to do their tax reporting. Well, federal and state taxes are due for all Americans on April 15 unless you filed an extension, so hurry up! Happy Tax Day!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A bug in the rain

This cute, new VW bug was parked in the rain outside my office window. In the background, you can see our mailman's postal truck. Lee usually takes a lunch or rest break in our parking lot after delivering our mail.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Yoga & more 4 U

If you want to strengthen your body and heal your soul in a serene environment, then consider visiting the "Yoga Soul Center" in Eagan. They teach classes in yoga, pilates, tai chi, belly dancing and more. Their mission: "We help clients win the battle against stress."

Monday, April 12, 2010

World premiere of "Chopin Tribute"

The James Sewell Ballet presented its world premiere of "Chopin Tribute" at the quite new 1,000 seat Burnsville Performing Arts Center. Polish born Tadeusz Majewski played Chopin's music to celebrate the composer's 200th birthday while the ballet dancers beautifully performed a masterfully choreographed series. The modern ballet was sprinkled with humor which evoked occasional laughs from our family and the audience.
Bravo! Encore!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Eagan Rotarian series #15

Michael Proebstle is a professional photographer in Eagan. He took photos of the people at the Eagan Rotary Art Gala in February. He takes graduation, wedding, family, holiday and other photographs. Call or email him of you want to preserve a special memory or event!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Read the directions!

If you're going to operate a big machine, you should read the "owner manual" - it's in the pouch, I think.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Rack Shack BBQ

Keith Sr, Keith Hittner Jr and store manager Elliot opened a new restaurant on March 10 just across the Eagan border at 2925 Cliff Road in Burnsville. Their new barbecue spot offers tender, 14 hour long "slow and low" smoked beef, pork, turkey & chicken. My yummy lunch included a delicious pulled pork sandwich with traditional BBQ sauce, zippy "Claire slaw," corn bread and a glass of water since I'm not a pop guzzler. Mrs Hittner visited with me during my lunch.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Top Brass Republicans

Only 10,000 lucky ticket holders were able to attend the Republican Rally for Minnesota's Congresswoman Michele Bachmann on Wednesday afternoon in the Minneapolis Convention Center. Congressman John Kline, Congressman Erik Paulsen and Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty (a fellow Eagan resident) spoke before former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin joined Congresswoman Bachmann on stage. I was just 10 people back from the center podium!