A Twin Oaks Middle School sixth-grader was named Mayor for a Day after winning an essay contest answering the question, “If you were mayor for a day, what would you do to make one of the services that our city provides even better?”

During Monday’s city council meeting, the council recognized sixth-grader Cole Howley as Mayor for a Day as he sat through the entire meeting on the council chamber dais.

“I heard of him by reputation and that he was sharp,” Mayor Kirt Briggs said. “Initially, we were just going to have him say the Pledge of Alliance, but we were having so much fun with Cole that he stayed for the whole meeting and he even asked for the motion to adjourn.”

Also during the meeting, Howley had a chance to read is winning essay to council members and the audience in attendance.

“If I was mayor of Prior Lake, I would create a Heritage Day where we could have a celebration of our community from younger to older generations of people,” Howley read aloud. “Along with this, we could also teach others that different places and different people can teach us new things, that can make our community feel closer.”

Howley went on to say that being mayor, it is important to listen, understand and respect citizens of the community.

“Our community has people from farmers to doctors, and they all do their own important jobs,” Howley said. “Here in Minnesota, without them, we aren’t the Prior Lake, Minnesota, we are right now. Prior Lake has lots of important people and that’s who I want to honor with much respect.”

Briggs said it was a great experience to have Howley during the whole meeting because he got to witness the swearing in of new officers. He also said there will be two more Mayors for a Day in the foreseeable future.

According to Jason Wedel, city manager, he said the essay contest was for fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders and a winner was selected from each grade. He said the selection of the winners from all of the entries was completed by the city’s Community Engagement Committee.