Zumbro River Restoration in Oronoco

I went to the Zumbro River Restoration Project update meeting tonight – it was very informative. Just to bring you up to speed, in 2010 a flood came through town, wrecked the dam, emptied the lake and pretty much left havoc behind along the river here in Oronoco.

So tonight was a status update of the restoration project. It’s going to be really nice when done and an economic draw into the area. A walking trail through roughly 80 acres of wetlands, with another 80 or so on the other side of Hwy 52. There is funding for most of the first three phases that will take out the dam, clean up the area around it and turn it into a kayak-friendly part of the rivers that combine here. Upstream will be reshaped to continue the attractiveness of the two branches of the river as a water-attraction, and phases 4 and 5 would complete this area as a trail that can be used to draw additional recreational use into the area. With the dam out, the walleye and other trout and bass can continue making their way upstream. And as part of this work, they are going to pull the downed trees and the trash trees out of the community gardens acreage, (the gardens are a small part of that almost 10 acre property, though) giving us a cleaned up green space along the river on the east side of the dam, too.

I’m disappointed it is not going to be able to start until 2015, but seeing the figures tonight can understand what they have to do. It will give us time to fund phases 4 and 5 too, and I’m well aware we cannot do that with bake sales!


Hello, World!

Nothing quite like coffee. It’s slightly bitter sweetness and eye-opening caffeine are needed as once again I reexamine how to a difference in the world beyond that of  just living, just pounding out my own little bit of the pavement. I went through a couple of days of OMG I Survived numbness after GISHWHES and Gold Rush, and then I spent last night cleaning and doing paperwork and declaring that I move on.

Last week Random Acts announced that the dates for Endure for Kindness. I think I know what i’m going to do – chemo caps. I envision borrowing the Oronoco community center for 24 hours so that people can join me there – Van says he will help feed me, lol. I think it’s a win-win if I move it there. Lots of patterns are available, several people have already indicated they would come help – I also need to work on donations to Random Acts. Everyone is pleased with the idea of chemo caps as an endurance event but I also need to work on the words to encourage awareness and support for RA.

Well, got to get to work. There is a post in the works about last week, promise! Just had this on my thoughts as I woke up, had to share.

Onwards and Upwards.

Things are about to get crazier!

Gold Rush starts filling up with vendors today, and by this afternoon with early shoppers. It’s so much fun! After this coffee, I gotta put my running shoes on and get started with my task list.

We have one vendor on our yard this year, and the SCA is returning to demo.

I am about done with GISHWHES activities. I have to get some school kids dancing, and I need to be an alarm clock on Twitter for the rest of the week. I also am going to talk to the firemen here about holding someone up over their heads…not me. Someone, though. And I want to continue raising funds for the food shelf.

I woke up tired. Going to be a long day..but nothing for it but to climb on this horse and ride!

Maybe I’ll get around to it..some day…

There are two things this next week: GHISWHES and Gold Rush! If I survive them both, I can tackle mountains and rivers and monsters, no problem. I’ll even do it all at once, with skittles and in a kale dress!
Then I can work on the next steps of my business and my sewing and all that other stuff, including the really cool website I’m working on for Bruce Crim. More on that soon! I’m pleased to be helping someone create a space for his memoirs and I think you will enjoy his stories.

But for now, not a lot of focus on other things. Well. The people that I’ll be working along-side this next ten days! That is just icing on the cake, really.



Excited about Oronoco Gold Rush!

I met with Lynn Benrud at Tilly’s Bar and Grill this afternoon to discuss Downtown Oronoco Gold Rush Days and how I can be useful during our antique festival here on August 16, 17 and 18. She doesn’t know me all that well and after I volunteered, she wanted to talk about what I liked to do so I can be best matched with the jobs. I was pleased to have a chance to talk about myself – who wouldn’t!? And it was good to get to know her as well.

On Wednesday evening, I’m going to help with creating binders, and for the rest of the weekend, I’ll do whatever I can. I said I’d work 4-5 hours per day, but that I have an SCA demo going on in my yard (well-manned by other people so I don’t have to stay there). Plus I want to help at the VFW. After joining, I do want to help with our pancake breakfasts or maybe with hamburgers; it’s how I’m going to get to know people and what I like doing.

Lynn agreed. She’s going to use me here and there, let me get an idea of all the different sort of tasks that are done. There is directing traffic and helping at the information booth and checking on people who are stationed somewhere and need breaks. There’s flagging, and putting out the No Parking signs. Lots of things to do.

I’m also going to help update the FaceBook page! So if you live in the area and want to stay informed, or if you maybe want to plan a trip here next year, go ‘like’ us!

Working for Change

If I just stay on course, I know I will change the world. I am at that funny half-way place with a couple of ongoing projects that will change my bit of the world to the good, if I’m patient and attentive and ready to leap into action on demand. Sort of like a lab puppy, huh?

The land for the community gardens should be clearing starting sometime in July. Oronoco Gold Rush is about six weeks away, can’t do much about that one. I’ve not heard back from the VFW about the fundraising for their new roof. The fiber art festival I’m helping with is even further away.

But I want to do something now, and fun, and stir things up a bit that also fits into my life. Thinking about a yarn bombing, or maybe organizing people to take part in a walking fundraiser or a group attendance to a movie or festival…mostly, I want to make a positive change in some way in the world. Circumstances have brought me the opportunity to learn from and talk with and share with some incredibly talented people these last few months, and I want to put some of what I have learned into action. 

Maybe it will all come clear tomorrow, or five minutes from now.

One of the tasks I’m monitoring at work right now is a total reindex of our Horizon bib databases. Basically, it sorts through each bib sort of reshuffling the bits around so it’s easier to find things. And it works like magic! I get a call that things are not searching correctly from one of the other locations that directly searches in our database, I complete the reindex and poof! Things work! (AquaBrowser, the discovery layer we are using as an online catalog, doesn’t rely on our indexes.)

It would be awesome to have a reindex process for my life! I suppose I do, it’s the reflective process that I’m going through right now, but I’d rather just have a button, please. I guess, instead, I’ll go look for a walking event to take part in!

Spinning My Life Together

Yellow and orange blendings on my spinning wheel

Taking a break in learning about how to develop a business plan while spinning up wool dyed at Lilies War to send a ‘Howdy!’ out to the world. And update you regarding some of my projects.

The City Council gave the green light to the creation of a FaceBook page for announcements and events. I get to help with that and have promised to handle the training of staff and council who want to take part.

I understand that the mayor or designated person will be talking to DNR about sculpting the land for the community gardens, not taking out the water hookups, and overseeing the cleanup work that is supposed to start in July. Woot!

The two dyeing events I had went so well that they spawned two more! I want to hold a Dye Day here, and play with cochineal while other people play with other stuff. And the medieval days for the Assisi Chapter Girl Scouts was well received and I’m in negotiations now to help organize a recruitment day in the fall. Maybe…that’s more iffy.

The indigo pot will be brought back up later this weekend, as I want to redye a couple of pieces of garb, one a commission that has some strange white dots on it. I’d like to see if I can’t at least get those to blend in…and then no more blue hands for a bit!


Well, back to spinning wool, listening to this lecture, and thinking about how to best spin the next steps of my new adventure!