How To Build Community

I came across this postcard today while organizing my office.  The text was written by the Syracuse Cultural Workers Community and the watercolor and colored pencil art was by Karen Kerney.  I thought it was definitely worth a read:

How to Build Community

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Car charger means business!

Kudos to Pine City!

As our municipality was looking to make our city more of an attractive destination/stop along I-35, it teamed up with Zef Energy to look for ways to attract residents and visitors to our local businesses and our downtown.  By offering smart EV charging in our city, local businesses claim we have driven more traffic to their restaurants and stores and, further, we have established our city as a green leader.

Electric vehicles (EVs) are coming faster than one might think with 10X growth in the last four years and analysts predicting that EVs are expected to comprise over 5% – 15% of all car sales by 2020.  Do you think Pine City is EV ready?EVs

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Mixed Blood Theatre’s Dr. King’s Dream Comes to Pine City

PINE CITY, Minn. – Dr. King’s Dream, Mixed Blood Theatre’s acclaimed celebration of the life and career of Dr. Martin Luther King, will be performed in Pine City at Pine Technical & Community College auditorium on Monday, February 22. Sponsored by Pine Technical & Community College’s Diversity Team, the performance begins at 5:30 and is free and open to the public.

Dr. King’s Dream features Warren C. Bowles in a stirring solo performance that movingly chronicles King’s career from its beginning during the Montgomery bus strike to his death in Memphis. It captures all of the dignity, courage, and humanity of a unique American leader.

Both the external events in King’s career (the marches in Selma and Birmingham, winning the Nobel Peace Prize) and his thoughts on topics ranging from Malcolm X to the police to President Kennedy are included, as his soaring “I Have a Dream” speech. Yet for all of the historical significance, what emerges is the spirit of a man dedicated to equality through non-violence, to an ideal, and to a dream.

Dr. King’s Dream is produced by the Mixed Blood Theatre Company from its home in a century-old Minneapolis fire station. Founded in 1976 and dedicated to the spirit of Dr. King’s dream, Mixed Blood is a multi-racial professional company promoting cultural pluralism, individual equality, and artistic excellence.

The show is one of four programs toured nationally by Mixed Blood. The others include Minnecanos, a look at Chicano cultural history in Minnesota; Daughters of Africa, a music-driven history of African American women; and Theory of Mind, about a college-bound young man on the autism spectrum.

Warren C. Bowles, the talented actor featured in Dr. King’s Dream, has toured for Mixed Blood since 1981. Among the most memorable of his scores of credits at Mixed Blood are Lucien in The Boys Next Door, the title role in Cyrano de Bergerac, and the professor in Oleanna. He directed Daughters of Africa and both wrote and directed African America and Black Eagle, a biography of Challenger shuttle astronaut Ron McNair.


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Spaghetti Dinner for “Rush to Plunge” Team

A local team has signed up to take part in the “Rush to Plunge” Special Olympics event in March on Mille Lacs Lake and are planning a spaghetti dinner fundraiser this month. Team members are seeking silent auction donations that will be part of their fundraising efforts on Friday, February 19th.  The event is being held at the Pine City American Legion.

Silent Auction begins at 5:30 PM and the all-you-can-eat Spaghetti Dinner begins at 6PM.  Cost for the dinner is $15 per person.


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Pine City High School One-Act Performs

The Pine City High School Theater will host an open rehearsal on Friday, February 5th at 5:00 PM for family and friends that would like to see the production of “Wiley and the Hairy Man”.

The cast and crew of 11 students at PCHS recently attended their sub-section contest where the competed against other schools.  Pine City placed 2nd and now advances to the section tournament this Saturday, February 6th.  They’ll compete with 7 other schools one-act shows and the top finisher will advance to the state competition on February 11th.

The cast has been rehearsing the 35 minute show over the last 6 weeks, along with their director, Becky Schueller, and feel prepared for the tough competition on Saturday.

Friday’s open rehearsal will be held in the Pine City High School Auditorium and is open to the public at no cost.


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Kanabec/Pine Health Hosts Traveling Health & Screening Fair

In an effort to provide additional health resources for the aging population in the community, Kanabec/Pine Health will host a traveling health and screening fair in April at locations in Pine City and Mora.  The collaborative effort is done in partnership with: Central MN Council on Aging, Pine Technical & Community College, FirstLight Health System, UCare, Family Pathways, Lakes and Pines CAC, and Catholic Charities.

The Pine City location will be held at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church on Tuesday, April 5th from 9:00 AM – 1:00 PM.


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Send a singing valentine to someone special!

Pine Center for the Arts is at it again:   For just 20 bucks, they head to the location of your choice (in zip code 55063) and sing love songs, deliver a personalized card and hand over a flower to that special someone in your mind.   This is the seventh-straight year the Center has taken on this fundraising endeavor.  Register here, or by stopping by the Pine City Area Chamber of Commerce Office (315 Main St. S) or download the form from the Center’s website,   Reservations can be made for Friday, Feb. 12 or Saturday, Feb. 13.

Singing Valentines

Pine Center for the Arts’ singing valentines make their rounds through Pine City, visiting offices, private homes and surprising those they sing to.  Here they are pictured in 2012.


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Network 2 Learn: Implementing Green Practices in our Community


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Take the Pine County Comprehensive Plan Survey

Pine County is currently undergoing a comprehensive planning process.  A comprehensive plan is a document that describes the historical and current characteristics of a community, its vision for the future, and strategic map to reach that vision.  As the first step in this process, Pine County will be accepting surveys through Feb. 1, 2016, to help characterize the interests of the community (you do not need to be a resident of Pine County to participate, just have an interest in the community).

Alternatively, paper surveys are available at the Zoning Department in the Pine County Courthouse, 635 Northridge Drive, Pine City.  The paper survey will be available for printing online.  If you would like to receive bulk  paper surveys to share at your business or organization contact the Zoning Department at 320-216-4220.

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A look back at 2015

Pine City amplifies itself as an arts destination

“Great to get Lori Line”

Lori Line

Lori Line

Arts enthusiasts across the city championed a new auditorium with the appeal, “Wouldn’t it be great to get Lori Line?  Wishes came true Dec. 11 when pianist Lorie Line made a holiday tour stop in Pine City for the first time at the community’s new performing arts center.  It was one of 37 shows in nine states.  Line famously got her start playing in Dayton’s department store and recently released a new “Christmas in the City” CD, music book and collector bell that tied in with the performance.

Bone Thugs-n-Harmony’s Krayzie Bone


Krayzie Bone

Krayzie Bone is making its way to Froggy’s downtown Pine City just after the new year, Jan. 15, after releasing his fifth album “Chasing the Devil”.  Born Anthony Henderson, Krayzie Bone is a fast-rhyming rapper best known for his time with the rap group Bone Thugs-n-Harmony.   He released one platinum-selling solo album, Thug Mentality, in 1999.  He is also a Grammy Award recipient along with Chamillionaire for the song “Ridin’” in 2007.

Pine City 6th Biggest Arts Economy in Minnesota Per Capita

logo_mcaA new study was released by the Pine City EDA, the East Central Regional Arts Council and Minnesota Citizens for the Arts that showed that, in addition to contributing to an excellent quality of life, the nonprofit arts and culture sector is also a substantial industry in Pine City, generating nearly $1 million in total economic impact annually.  The Impact and Health of the Nonprofit Arts and Culture Sector found that five nonprofit arts and culture organizations in Pine City support the equivalent of 18 full time jobs in the county, and that 21,150 people attend nonprofit arts and cultural events annually.  This is the sixth biggest arts economy in the State, per capita, behind just Minneapolis, St. Paul, Duluth, Cook County and Grand Rapids.

Can take the boy out of Pine City but can’t take “Pine City” out of the boy

Pedal Pub Ambush

pedalpubRyan Barth, 32, of Pine City, was accused of throwing water balloons and shooting high-velocity squirt guns at PedalPub passengers during a series of bicycle attacks in downtown Minneapolis May 23—the last of which involved off-duty Burnsville police officers who chased him and other perpetrators down and held them until Minneapolis police could arrive.  Barth later pled guilty in Hennepin County District Court to interference with vehicular traffic, a misdemeanor.  Dropped were two other misdemeanor counts:  fifth-degree assault and disorderly conduct.  He was one of two people (six were charged) to plead guilty.  According to police, Barth was dressed in black and wearing a bandanna around the lower part of his face when he squirted the pedal pub operator in the face as she tried to take a photograph of him and his ransacking accomplices.  Upon entering his plea, Barth was sentenced to pay $128 in fines and fees, given a stayed 45-day jail sentence and ordered to pay $300 in restitution to the proprietor, PedalPub Twin Cities.  Barth is challenging the restitution.

Black Lives Matter Shooting/Riots


Nathan Gustavsson

Two Pine Technical & Community College gunsmithing alum, Nathan Gustavsson, 21, and Daniel Macey, 26, were involved in disrupting an otherwise peaceful protest for racial reasons near the Fourth Precinct of Minneapolis.  All men were labeled “white supremacists” by media yet the media failed to release any photos of Macey for days, who turns out is Asian (the other white?).


Daniel Macey

PTCC President Joe Mulford released this statement:   “Pine Technical and Community College is a place where students come for personal development and to provide a brighter future for themselves and their families. Our values include respecting the dignity and worth of each individual and maintaining integrity in everything we do.  We condemn any behaviors that are not consistent with these values. “

Several New Businesses Open, Several Expand

The community saw several industries in the Pine City Technology Park make expansion preparations including Advance Design & Systems, Leisure Design, Broekema USA and Innovative Basement Systems.  Some familiar new businesses in Pine City in 2015 included Dollar Tree, Great Clips and Murphy USA.

Farewell to a legend

Eileen Anderson, 86, Pine County’s first female commissioner

eileen anderson

Eileen Anderson

  • For a look back at ‘08, click here.
  • For a look back at ‘09, click here.
  • For a look back at ‘10, click here.
  • For a look back at ‘11, click here.
  • For a look back at ‘12, click here.
  • For a look back at ’13, click here.
  • For a look back at ’14, click here.

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