Here is the latest “Midpoint,” a mid-month Web report on some local news and information received since the publication of our March issue:
Drive-by food collection
Como Park Lutheran Church and the Como Park/Falcon Heights Living-at -Home Block Nurse program reported their March 7 drive-by food drive raised $3,835 in donations and 2,353 pounds of food for Keystone Community Services.
The two groups added they expect to receive an additional $700 in corporate matching funds. All proceeds go to Keystone Community Services in support of the Minnesota FoodShare March Campaign.
Murray Middle School social studies teacher Janey Atchison has been honored by The National History Day organization.
Atchison is one of only 120 teachers selected from an international pool of candidates to attend an NHD spring professional development program. According to a NHD press release, “Upon completion of the [program], Atchison will have demonstrated the ability to share with her students key strategies for researching, supporting, and presenting historical arguments bolstered by primary sources [from the Library of Congress].”
Murray Principal Jamin McKenzie said, “As a community, we are so very proud of Ms. Atchison and are very excited to see how this experience and new learning will impact our students and their quest to research, learn about and share our nation’s history.”
—Sarah CR Clark, who lives in St. Anthony Park, is a Bugle freelancer.
Good Acre virtual class
The Good Acre, a nonprofit food hub in Falcon Heights, will present a free virtual webinar at 5 p.m., March 25 featuring Twin Cities food author Beth Dooley.
Dooley will present “Discover: The Perennial Kitchen,” sharing cooking tips and recipes from her newest book, “The Perennial Kitchen Simple Recipes for a Healthy Future.” The webinar is free but registration is required.
All registrants will receive a shopping list, sourcing tips and recipes. For further information, contact Good Acre at 651-493-7158.
Turning the lights down in Falcon Heights?
The Falcon Heights Environment Commission has been looking up at night and noticing where it’s blasting light in the nighttime sky.
The group has been discussing how a city in a central urban location can contribute to the Dark Sky movement (not to be confused with a 2013 horror movie titled “Dark Skies”), which seeks to eliminate light that emanates beyond where it’s useful to humans, often to the detriment of birds and insects flying overhead.
The International Dark-Sky Association announced in September 2020 that the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness is the 13th area on Earth to be designated an International Dark Sky Sanctuary. But the movement includes city dwellers, as well, who want to cut glare and remove unnecessary lighting.
Jim Wassenberg, until recently the commission’s chair, said he’s been taking more walks than ever in his neighborhood during the COVID-19 pandemic. He’s noticed streetlights, parking areas, and other spots, Wassenberg said, where it seems possible “to make it so that they don’t project light upwards.”
The group plans public outreach this spring, Wassenberg said, to encourage residents to improve their home lighting.
The commission would also like the city to become a model for promoting “dark skies.” While the largest roads in Falcon Heights are lit by the county, the city could improve lighting on side streets and parks and around City Hall, Wassenberg said.
(Anne covers Falcon Heights and Lauderdale government news for the Bugle.)