Upcoming events (posted March 13, 2013)

Spring book sale 

Stop by the meeting room at the Cambridge Public Library March 14, 4 to 8 p.m., March 15, 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., and March 16, 9:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and browse the collection of donated and discarded adult, teen and children’s materials.

Hard cover books are 50 cents each and soft cover books are 25 cents each. On March 16, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., the library will have its annual $2 bag sale. Bring a grocery bag and fill it up for $2. Proceeds from the sale will be used to purchase new materials for all East Central Regional Library branches.

National Anthem vocalist 

Jennifer Thyng has sang in many venues, including performing the National Anthem for Major League team games across the county.  She will perform at the Cool Time event at North Country Coffee, 38500 Tanger Dr., with We R Able March 14.  Guests can expect some music in honor of St. Patrick’s Day.  A set meal begins at 5 p.m. with music at 6 p.m.

Crex Meadows dinner

The endowment benefit dinner for Crex Meadows, located near Grantsburg, Wis., will be March 16, 6 to 9 p.m. (cost & pre-registration required). The endowment fund is to provide a perpetual source of funding for the wildlife education and wildlife management programs. A meal is planned, which includes a vegetarian option. The evening speaker is Sparky Stensaas, author, naturalist, photographer, publisher, and writer. His program, “Owls to Orchids: Magic and Mystery in Our Northern Bogs,” will unravel the myths of bogs in discovering the unique and awesome creatures found within.

For more information about Crex Meadows and events, call 715-463-2739, visit www.crexmeadows.org or find Crex Meadows on Facebook.

Mingle with Swedish visitors at waffle supper

Kichi-Saga Swedish Club is holding its annual waffle supper at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 16 at Chisago Lakes Lutheran Church in Center City. The key note speaker will be Eric Dregni, author of “In Cod We Trust” and “Vikings in the Attic.” Come for great food and conversation, as a tour group of 20 Swedish visitors will be joining this event.

French toast breakfast

The North Branch Lioness Club is planning a French toast breakfast March 17, 8 a.m. to noon, at the American Legion. The cost for ages 12 and up is $6. Those ages 4 to 12 may eat for $3. Children ages 3 and under may eat for free. Advanced sale tickets are $5. Call 651-674-5127 for advanced sale tickets.

Maple syrup-collecting workshop

A maple syrup-collecting workshop has been planned at Wild River State Park March 17, 23 and 24, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Meet at the visitor center.

As the warmer days and cooler nights begin to make the sap run, it’s time to tap the trees. A limit of 30 participants per date are welcome to learn in-depth and hands-on aspects about the basics of maple syrup collecting through this small-group workshop-style experience. Bring a lunch and enjoy the afternoon. Registration is required. Call 651-583-2125 x227 to sign up for the class.

Irish band

East Central Regional Library is proud to present the Irish band “Ring of Kerry” on St. Patrick’s Day this year. Ring of Kerry will be at the Pine City Elementary Auditorium March 17, 2 p.m. This program is for all ages and is open to the public. Seating is first come, first serve and no tickets are required.

‘Let’s Go Fishing’

Let’s Go Fishing is a volunteer organization that provides free fishing and boating trips on area lakes for seniors 55 and older, adults with disabilities and veterans. All on a wheel chair accessible pontoon boat with a full canopy.

The North Branch Chapter will be hosting an informational meeting at 7 p.m. March 19 at the AmericInn in North Branch. This is an opportunity to learn about the Let’s Go Fishing program for men and women interested in becoming volunteers in the organization.

Volunteers to be fishing guides on the pontoon, pontoon captains and people to work in various support positions to help the program run smoothly are needed.

On May 4, the program will be having its waffle breakfast and silent auction fundraiser at Main Street Church in North Branch, 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. This is the organization’s main fundraiser; all are invited to come.

Any questions can be directed to Rick Olseen at 612-419-8827.

4-hour defensive driving course

The Chisago County Senior Center will be holding a four-hour defensive driving class March 19, 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. This is only for those who have already taken an eight-hour class. Cost is $16 per person, payable cash or check that afternoon. Participants must preregister: 651-674-8658.

Adventure author

On a perfect day in March, 2009, with the temperature hovering near -40 degrees, John Huston and Tyler Fish stepped off the North American continent and onto the frozen, jumbled surface of the Arctic Ocean. The two seasoned adventurers had their sights set on one goal: to travel under their own power to the North Pole without resupply. If they succeeded, they’d be the first Americans to do so.

“Forward”  is their story. Over a period of nearly two months, John and Tyler skied more than 500 miles, hauling sleds that contained everything they needed to survive. They maneuvered their 300-pound loads through punishing rubble fields and swam across stretches of open water. To fuel their bodies and fight back the cold, each consumed more than 7,000 calories per day, downing deep-fried bacon, chunks of butter, and fat-laden pemmican stew.

Please join The Rush City Library as it welcomes Tyler Fish at the Rush City March 19, 6:30 p.m.

Vennelag meeting

Join the members of Vennelag at the Lindstrom Community Center March 19, 7 p.m., for entertainment by Roger Hellesvig, also known as Ole Oleson. Ole will present the program, “An Immigrant’s Tale.” Using an immigrant trunk as a focal point, he will tell what it was like to immigrate to Minnesota in the mid-1800’s. Guests are always welcome.

Book club meeting

The Wyoming Area Library will host a discussion about Kent Haruf’s book “Plainsong” March 21, 7 p.m. in the community room. Copies of the book are available at the library’s front desk.

Ham Bingo

North Branch Knights of Columbus will sponsor a Ham Bingo at St. Gregory’s parish hall, 38725 Forest Blvd., March 22, 7 p.m. Fish Sandwiches will be served 6 to 7:30 p.m. An egg roll for the kids will take place at halftime of the bingo.

Horticulture Day

“A garden through the seasons” will be the keynote presentation by Arla Carmichiel, three River Parks District supervisor, Wayzata, and Steve Kelley and Kelley Nursery, Long Lake, at the 11th Annual Pine County Horticulture Day March 23, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Pine City High School. Visit www.extension.umn.edu/county/pine to register.

Registration includes educational sessions, morning refreshments, a light lunch, handouts, door prizes and time to visit with exhibitors.

College financial aid workshop

To assist students in preparing and applying for financial aid, Pine Technical College will host a Minnesota College Goal workshop event, March. 27, 3:30 p.m. PTC financial aid staff members will provide professional assistance with completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), as well as helpful information about additional methods for paying for college such as loans, scholarships, and more.

For more information about PTC’s programs, including information regarding how to apply, or for more information about financial aid and the March 27 workshop, call 320-629-5100.

ECE Annual Meeting

Bring your family and connect with your community. Join East Central Energy (ECE) for your cooperative’s 77th annual meeting April 6 at East Central Schools in Finlayson.

The annual meeting serves an important business purpose and is a fun social event where members can engage and learn about their cooperative.

The day begins with a complimentary pancake breakfast at 8 a.m. Popular activities such as bingo and bucket truck rides will return. There will be interactive displays focusing on ECE’s energy-saving programs, electrical safety and the co-op’s community involvement.

Members can ask questions and take part in cooperative proceedings during the business meeting at 10:15 a.m. ECE President/CEO Steve Shurts will review the cooperative’s financial report for 2012 and highlights from the year. Free licensed child care will be available throughout the event.

During the business meeting, election results will be announced for director districts 2 and 5. Elected by acclamation, Joe Morley, district 4 director will be introduced.

For more information, visit eastcentralenergy.com or call 1-800-254-7944. Members who attend the business meeting will receive a thank-you gift.

Books needed

The Friends of North Branch Library is looking for people to donate their books for the spring book sale. The books can be dropped off at the circulation desk at North Branch Area Library during open hours. Those who have questions should call 651-674-8443. The sale is scheduled the second Saturday in April.

Bake sale 

The North Branch Lioness Club is sponsoring a craft/bake sale April 20, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church in North Branch. Food will be available.

Peer and family support group

A NAMI Connection peer support group for adults recovering from mental illness meets weekly in Cambridge. The free group is sponsored by the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota. Trained facilitators who are also in recovery lead NAMI Connection groups. The group meets Thursdays, 6:30 p.m., at Cambridge Medical Center, 701 S. Dellwood Street, in the administrative conference room. For more information, contact Louise at 651-592-6989. A family support group also meets at the same time and location to help families develop better coping skills and find strength through sharing their experiences. For information, call Sarah 320-396-0443.

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