Horizon’s Blog Comes to an End

A note of thanks to the many individuals that have been following the Horizon’s Pine Poker Blog over the last several years.  You may have noticed that the content on this blog site has been sporadic over the last year and is no longer staying current with local events.  As a result, we’ve made the decision to end the Horizon’s Blog by the end of 2018.

If you’ve enjoyed receiving the daily or weekly notifications from this blog, and want to continue to stay current about things that are happening in the community…. I would invite you to subscribe to the new blog created by the Pine City Area Chamber of Commerce.  The News & Events page on the recently updated Chamber website will include posts about community events, chamber activities, job postings, and member provided news items.  The site will be updated daily, so be sure to set your notifications to a timeline that fits your schedule.

How can you subscribe to the Chamber Blog?  Visit the homepage of the site at http://www.pinecitychamber.com and scroll to the bottom left side of the page and enter your email address into the Subscribe box.


Resource Highlight: Family Pathways

The following article is submitted by the ACT on Alzheimer’s Pine City Action Team as we seek to fulfill our goal of sharing resources and information as a dementia-friendly community.  Anyone interested in more information or how to become involved with making Pine City a Dementia friendly community can contact: Cathy Gilmore ACT on ALZ Pine City coordinator at 320-310-1313 or cathyjgilmore@yahoo.com

Do you know where to turn when your older loved ones need help?

Together, we’ve got this.

It’s undeniable. Families experience many stages of life. Unfortunately, as parents, grandparents and others age, navigating life can become tough and often affects the entire family. Most people are unprepared and need assistance as they begin this new and uncharted journey. Family Pathways’ Aging Services is where people turn to in East Central Minnesota for support and guidance.

Advancing the health, safety and well-being of older adults and their families when they need it most, Family Pathways Aging Services offers long-term and cost effective services for older adults as well as their caregivers. The goal is to help maintain independent living for as long as possible. Identification and management of safety risks are at the heart of the matter as well as integrating the older adult into their community. This helps to reduce isolation and loneliness.

In 2016, Aging Services supported 819 older adults and their caregivers. In order to make a significant community impact, we have built relationships with other public, private, and faith-based organizations to better meet the needs of an isolated rural area.  

What is our service area?

Chisago, Isanti, Kanabec, Mille Lacs and Pine Counties and the City of Forest Lake.

What types of education does Aging Services offer?

Classes and training are offered to help guide older adults and/or their caregivers to find and connect with services they need. Workshops are also provided that are designed specifically to help keep older adults in their homes such as Matter of Balance, Living Well with Chronic Conditions, Powerful Tools for Caregivers, Journey to Wellness as You Age, Caregiver Essentials, Elder Abuse Awareness, and Advance Directive Planning. Staff is also available to lead Dementia Friends training.

What types of Home-Based Services are offered?

Home-based services for the community include social visits from friendly, trained volunteer companions, assisted transportation to the grocery store or medical appointments, and homemaking help for light housekeeping.  To accomplish this, dedicated volunteers provide hundreds of hours and valuable support. All volunteers have background checks and receive training before they are matched with a client.  

What types of supportive programs are offered?

Caregiver consulting is a service provided for caregivers, families, and neighbors who may or may not live with the care receiver.  This personalized service focuses on the caregiver to provide the knowledge, skills, and tools they need to achieve a balanced life while caring for another person.  Many caregivers work outside of the home and may have families. This dramatically increases the need for expert assistance with resources, education, and training. It also saves the family precious time and energy.

Caregiver Consulting is available in person, by telephone, email, through one on one home visits, or other meeting locations.  The focus is on developing a relationship with a consultant who is an expert in local resources, medical advocacy, education, and classes to assist with positive solutions that empower and encourage caregivers to help their loved one age well at home.  Consulting services, support groups, and educational classes have been shown to delay moves to Assisted Living and Nursing Homes anywhere from three months to several years.  

In-home respite service provides caregivers with a helping hand or much needed break. A dedicated and trained volunteer, along with guidance from experienced staff, goes to the care recipient’s home to visit while the caregiver takes time for themselves. Whether work needs to get done, an appointment be kept, or  a break is desperately needed, in-home respite is a great option. While the caregiver is taking a break, their loved one can participate in various activities such as listening to music, doing a craft, baking cookies, or playing cards. Staff is trained in dementia care and has memory kits available for trained volunteers.  

We are also piloting our first Memory Café in Kanabec and Isanti Counties that welcomes people from all our entire service area. Memory Café is a unique and fun way to bring people together who are experiencing various levels of memory loss. Caregivers, relatives, and friends also enjoy the Memory Café as they are able to socialize with others who have common experiences in a dementia friendly setting.

Who provides the services?

Family Pathways Aging Services is led by manager, Lise Arseneau Lee who holds a MA Degree in Sociology Specializing in Gerontology. She has ten years of experience working in services for the aging.

Aging Specialists, Maria Bowen Lourey, Collette Colucci, and Stacy Nolting have a combined 52 years of experience working with older adults. Caregiver Consultants, Lori Lestina, Jayne Mund, and Anita Sparks have a combined 75 years of experience working with caregivers. Social Respite Coordinator, Angie Detert has five years of experience working with older adults.

Is there a cost for services?

We receive funding through grants, donations and thrift store revenue. We also request clients contribute through a sharing of cost; however services are available regardless of one’s ability to contribute.

Alzheimer’s “Every Minute Counts”

ACT on Alzheimer’s Pine City invites the public to a screening of the PBS Documentary, “Alzheimer’s: Every Minute Counts”.   The documentary is an urgent wake-up call about the national threat posed by Alzheimer’s disease.

The afternoon schedule includes Resource & Information Tables, viewing of the documentary, and a panel discussion featuring local professionals to address your questions.

RSVP’s are appreciated, but not required.


Business Resource: PACE Program

Pine County recently hosted a Business Workshop event to share more information about a new resource available for commercial property owners.

PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) is a new way to finance energy efficiency and renewal energy upgrades to the buildings owned by businesses, non-profit organizations, faith-based organizations, and housing developments.

Energy-saving measures pursued by the owners receive project financing and are repaid as a separate item on their property tax assessment for a set period.  PACE eliminates the burden of upfront costs by providing low-cost, long-term financing.

The City of Pine City adopted this program 2 years ago, and recently Pine County has adopted the program as well.  This means that any qualifying property within the Pine County area may be eligible for this program.

Basic Qualifications for PACE financing:

  • Property owners must be current on mortgage and property taxes
  • No federal or state liens against the property
  • Must not be in bankruptcy proceeding
  • Lender acknowledgement or “consent” from current mortgage lender
  • Term of financing may not exceed weighted average useful life of improvements
  • Improvements may not exceed 20% of assessed property value

Interested in learning more about your next steps?  Visit the CERTs website resource page, which includes more details as well as some interviews with business owners who have completed projects: http://www.cleanenergyresourceteams.org/pace


Healthcare Sector Summit III

Join healthcare providers, educators, workforce development professionals, economic development, community members and legislators as we continue to address the employee shortage in the healthcare industry.  Learn about transition strategies and how you can be involved.

Attend the Healthcare Sector Summit III on Friday, October 13th in St. Cloud MN.



Pine County Business Workshop

All Pine County Business Owners are invited to attend one of the two workshops being offered on Friday, September 8th to share information about the PACE program.

The workshop will share information about the Property Assessed Clean Energy Program (PACE) for Businesses and Non-profits to identify ways to improve energy efficiency in their buildings, receive low cost, long term financing, make upgrades and improve their bottom line.

WORKSHOP 2: 1pm-2:30pm
Pine City Library Community Room
300 5th St SE, Pine City

The same workshop will be available at Essentia Health in Sandstone from 10AM – 11:30AM if the afternoon time doesn’t work for you.

09.08 PACE Workshop

Citizen of the Year Nominations Due Thursday

Earlier this month the Pine City Area Chamber of Commerce announced the deadline for nominations for Citizen of the Year as Thursday, August 31st.  As the date gets closer, we wanted to remind community members about this opportunity.

So often we forget to recognize the good works of individuals in our community and the Citizen of the Year program takes a moment to shine a light on those doing good in the community without seeking to be in the spotlight.

If you know a member of the community that should be recognized, we want to hear from you.  It’s as simple as writing a letter or an email nominating an individual and sharing a story or two of the good works being done in Pine City.

Please submit your nomination in writing by email at info@pinecitychamber.com or by mail 315 Main Street South, Suite 155, Pine City MN 55063.    Deadline for submission is Thursday, August 31st.  A nominee should be a resident of Pine City and exhibit qualities that make them deserving of recognition by the community.

A recognition banquet in honor of the 2017 Citizen of the Year will be planned for mid-September.

Cornfeed Event Coming August 19th

Zion Lutheran Church is preparing to host a new event this summer.  The community is invited to join them for the 1st Annual Cornfeed event on Saturday, August 19th from 4:30 – 7:00PM.    Enjoy pork chops, pasta salad and all-you-care-to-eat corn-on-the-cob!  Purchase your tickets in advance to get a discounted ticket!  Check out the flyer here for more information!

08.19 Zion Cornfeed

Next GPAE Grant Cycle Announced

GPAEThe Greater Pine Area Endowment has announced the second round grant cycle for 2017.  The deadline for submission of grant applications is Midnight on Thursday, August 31.  The Greater Pine Area Endowment Fund was created in 1992 as a component fund of the Initiative Foundation to develop community resources and to enhance the quality of life of individuals and families in the Pine City area.  The GPAE funds have been established to provide financial resources for the needs of the greater Pine area within the physical boundaries of the Pine City School District 578.

The grant funds can be used for economic or community development projects.  For economic development projects, funding will be considered for projects that lead to quality job creation or high tech employment.  Projects that promote community pride and quality of life through environmental stewardship and community beautification would be considered under the community development category.  The GPAE will also consider proposals that positively impact the housing, safety, employment and other needs of the more vulnerable members of the community including youth, the elderly and those who are low-income.

Since its inception, the GPAE has granted to organizations such as the Pine County Sheriff’s Department for the purchase of infant keys to AED’s; the Pine City Arts Council for the Robinson Park Gazebo Addition; and the Pine City Library for purchase of new computers.

The online grant submission process hosted through the Initiative Foundation can be accessed through the GPAE website at www.pineendowment.org.  Organizations seeking assistance in using the online system should contact Becky Schueller at 320-322-4040 or pinecitychamber@gmail.com.  A copy of the Grant Guidelines is available online or can be picked up from the Chamber of Commerce office at 315 Main Street South.   Online submissions are due by Midnight on Thursday, August 31, 2017.


Dementia Friends Champion Training

ACTPineCityLogoAdditional education training events are coming to Pine City later this summer and into the fall.  The first training event – Dementia Friends Champion Training – will be on Wednesday, August 30th from 1:00 – 3:00 PM.

This training will equip you with the knowledge and activities needed to facilitate a Dementia Friends Information Session with community members.

An Information Session is a face-to-face session that lasts approximately one hour is run by a Dementia Friends Champion.  It covers the five key messages everyone should know about dementia through activities and discussion.

The goal of the Dementia Friends Information Session is to help community members understand dementia and the small things they can do to make a difference for people living with dementia.

Champion Training is offered at no cost.

To register for the August 30th Session in Pine City, please call Lakes & Pines at 320-679-1800 or 1-800-832-6082, option 4.