Community calendar (as of May 1)

Treating Gastroesophogeal reflux disease

On May 2, 4:30 p.m., at Fairview Lake Medical Center, 5200 Fairview  Blvd., Wyoming, Mario Potvin, MD, will speak about treating Gastroesophogeal reflux disease, also known as acid reflux or GERD.

GERD happens when stomach acid comes up into the esophagus, damaging the mucous membranes of the throat. GERD is usually caused when the muscle that holds the top of the stomach closed stops working properly. This condition, known as a hiatal hernia, allows stomach contents (gastric reflux) to rise up into the throat. New treatments now exist for treating this chronic condition.

The presentation takes place in conference room B.  Individuals who suffer from GERD and their family members are welcome to attend.

Choir concert

The East Central Minnesota Chorale will be performing a concert May 3, 7:30 p.m., at Immanuel Lutheran Church of Brunswick. No tickets needed; a free will donation is appreciated.

Taylors Falls F.D. smelt fry

The Taylors Falls Fire Department is hosting its 69th annual smelt fry dinner 4 to 7:30 p.m. May 4. Regular admission for the meal, to include baked beans and coleslaw, is $10. Youth ages 7 to 12 may eat for $5, and children 6 and under will be admitted free. The fire hall is located at 637 First St. in Taylors Falls.

Audubon bird walks

On May 4, Wild River Audubon will lead a bird walk at Ki Chi Saga park, 29061 Glader Blvd., in Lindstrom. Meet in the parking lot at 8 a.m. This is a bird walk for beginners, but all are welcome to come, see and learn. On May 11, there will be a bird walk at Anderson Park, 27241 Furman St. N. E., in North Branch. Meet by the picnic tables at 8 a.m. Bring your own lunch and enjoy a picnic with the group after the walk. Mark your calendars for May 18 and June 8 for birding at Wild River State Park. Details to be announced. All events are free and open to all.

Women’s salad luncheon

Ladies, mark your calendars: First Lutheran Church of Harris invites you to a women’s salad luncheon on May 4 at noon. Bring your mother, daughters and friends. A free will offering is accepted and there will be door prizes. Musical entertainment will be provided by bluegrass musicians Paul and Denise Morris.

Hope for recovery workshop 

The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota will hold a free, one-day education workshop that provides families and individuals with information on mental illnesses, practical coping strategies and hope for recovery. The workshop will be held at Cambridge Community Center, 701 South Dellwood Street, May 4, 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Registration is requested. For information, or to register, call 1-888-NAMI-Helps or 651-645-2948.

North Chisago Historical Society meetings

The society will meet May 7, 7 p.m., at Rushseba Town Hall. Members of the Casper Scheele family will give a history/genealogy presentation. Casper was born in Germany and came to America in 1867 and settled in the Nessel/Rushseba area on East Rush Lake.

On June 4, 7 p.m., the society will meet at Rushseba Town Hall; the mayors of Rush City, Harris and North Branch will be guests at this meeting. The informal discussion is open to the public and NCHS members. The discussion will center on the sharing of a common interest in Old Highway 61 as it relates to heritage tourism.

On July 2, 7 p.m., at Rushseba Town Hall, the society will have its potluck supper.

Joel Karlsson from Sweden will provide the entertainment. The public is invited. Refreshments will be served.

Mental illness speakers 

In Our Own Voice (IOOV), a free public education program featuring two speakers sharing their compelling personal stories of living with a mental illness and achieving recovery, will be offered May 9, 2 to 3 p.m., at the North Branch Area Library, 6355 379th St., (in meeting room on left). The program includes a short video and a question and answer period. The National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) of Minnesota offers IOOV presentations around the state to improve public awareness of mental illnesses. For more information, call Brian at 1-888-NAMI-Helps ext. 116.

Regional Minnesota book award

Celebrate 25 years of the Minnesota Book Awards as East Central Regional Library presents an evening with four acclaimed and award-winning Minnesota authors at the North Branch Area Library May 9, 7 p.m.  The event is one of six mini-galas being held across the state following the big gala in St. Paul. The ECRL event will feature readings, discussion and book signings by Catherine Friend, William Kent Krueger, Kevin Kling, and Julie Klassen.   A reception with refreshments will follow the program provided by the Friends of the North Branch Area Library, the Chisago Lakes Friends of the Library, the Friends of the Wyoming Area – Giese Memorial Library, the Friends of the Cambridge Public Library and the Rush City Friends of the Library.

Almelund seniors meeting

Almelund seniors will meet at Amador Town Hall May 10 for a potluck meal at noon. David Johnson will be there to entertain. Cards will be enjoyed by all in the afternoon. Everyone is welcome.

WEI EcoSpa event

The Women’s Environment Institute will have a “EcoSpa: Mother of All Indulgences” day May 11, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The cost to attend this event at the Amador Hill Farm and Orchard is $65.

On a full day at the WEI farm, learn about how to keep your body happy and healthy as well as the world around you. Indulge in a plethora of physical activities from Tai Chi, Yoga to aerobics; move on and relax in the massage and meditation kiosks; learn how to make healing and beautifying mixtures from herbs; watch demonstrations on cooking and teas; get hands-on time through our farm campus; wander through our woods and prairies; learn of the wonders of edible and healing plants that grow naturally in the area; and so much more.

Driver improvement course

A four-hour 55-plus driver improvement course is offered May 11, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Fairview Lakes Medical Center, 11725 Stinson Ave., Chisago City.

The Driver Improvement course is open to the public; pre-registration is required. A Minnesota Highway Safety and Research Center certified instructor teaches this class.  By utilizing the most up-to-date research in the field, participants will be provided the latest information in regards to driver safety, new laws, and vehicle technology.

The fee for the refresher course is $20. For more information or to register, visit or call 1-(888)-234-1294.

Annual bird walk

The public is invited to the Fifth Annual Bird Walk at Anderson County Park in Isanti County May 11, 8 to 11:30 a.m. Come explore the park for spring migrant and returning resident birds with expert birders Tom Anderson and Joe Sausen from the local Wild River Audubon Chapter.

The park is located in the southeast corner of Isanti County on County Road 18, a quarter mile north of County Road 9 and two miles south of County Road 5.

The event is free. Experienced bird-watching children are welcome. Call 651-462-2015 for reservations or with questions. A bring-your-own picnic lunch will follow at the picnic shelter.

North Branch Auxiliary meeting

Next meeting of the North Branch Post 85 Ladies’ Auxiliary is May 14, 7:30 p.m. at the Legion. Topics of discussion for the meeting: Poppy Day, Red Bull Day, Midsummer Days and new officers. If anyone has questions, they can contact Roberta Elmstrand at 651 674-7210.

Youth ATV safety training class

A youth ATV safety class is scheduled May 25. Registration is 8:30 a.m. to 9 a.m. at the Chisago County Fairgrounds in Rush City. The fee for the course is $15, collected during registration that day. The test starts at 9 a.m., followed by the written and driving test. Make checks payable to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Participants must supply their own 90 cc-plus ATV, and they must complete a safety CD before the course. The CD is available free of charge by calling the DNR Information Center at (888) 646-6367 or (651) 296-6157, or the Safety Training Office at (800) 366-8917.

Chisago County Senior Center fundraising raffle

The Chisago County Senior Center will have a fundraising raffle the second and fourth Wednesdays of each month now until Aug. 28. Tickets are $5 each. Winners receive $50 and their names stay in the raffle pool for all 12 drawings, regardless of how many times they win. Those who enter need not be present to win. Stop by the senior center, 38790 6th Ave., North Branch, to purchase tickets.

Volunteers needed

Volunteers are need at North Branch Food Shelf for three-hour shifts Mondays, Wednesdays, Thursdays and/or Fridays. Contact Bobbie Eckel, coordinator for North Branch Food Shelf: 651-674-8313

Senior Surf Days

EC Regional Libraries are hosting “Senior Surf Days,” where seniors will learn how to surf the Internet. These classes are geared toward those who have little or no experience with computers. Call 1-800-333-2433 x83030 to find out when a class will be offered at your local East Central branch. Space is limited and pre-registration is required.

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