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Three sport athletes are rare these days, especially in a big high school like Shakopee. It’s even rarer for a tri-sport athlete to be successful at the highest level of competition in the state in all three sports, yet that’s exactly what Shakopee High School seniors Connor Raines and Jack …

The Golden Rule is great. I love the Golden Rule. The point of this column is not meant to be detrimental in any way to the tremendous value found in the Golden Rule. The thought behind this post is that the Platinum Rule builds upon the foundation of the Golden Rule, going one step further …

Most days I don’t pay much attention to what I wear. It’s one of the perks of working at home — I don’t have to dress to impress. I probably wear 10% of my wardrobe 90% of the time. My favorite jeans, a handful of faded T-shirts, and two comfortable sweatshirts get the most wear.

I saw a social media posting recently that said, “Sometimes the greatest gift you can give another person is simply to include them.” It’s one of those pieces of good advice that’s spot on, simplistic, and doesn’t require a lot of effort to put into action. Inclusion can be incredibly impact…

Even though I ran the Twin Cities marathon for the first time on Oct. 6, I still don’t consider myself a “runner.” Running isn’t something I love. I love scoring a deal on a $4 sweater at Goodwill that still has retail tags from Target. I love stopping strangers on sidewalks to pet their dac…

I’m a big fan of the Harry Potter series. One of my favorite quotes is near the end of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” It’s when Dumbledore commends a student by saying, “It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to your enemies, but a great deal more to stand up to your friends.”

If you wrote down all of the reasons why high school years are awkward, dating would be at or near the top of the list for most of us. Dating can encompass all of a teen’s worst fears, from being rejected to doing something embarrassing that everyone will be talking about at school the next …

One of my favorite memories as a kid is sitting with my grandpa on the porch of his farmhouse. A train track was clearly visible from about a quarter mile away. As I sat with him, he’d tell me stories, we’d watch the occasional truck or tractor go by, and when the freight trains rumbled past…

We’ve had at least three restaurants open in the last year or so in Shakopee — Bravis Modern Street Food in the downtown area last summer and more recently, Little Chicago Chophouse in Canterbury Park and McCoys Copper Pint in Southbridge. I’ve eaten at two of the three and the third is on m…

I enjoy playing board games. I suppose by some people’s standards for entertainment, that makes me pretty lame. That’s OK. I am lame. I also enjoy watching Lawrence Welk reruns, birdwatching, and sitting by a lake. And I can’t stand the Avengers movies or any video games from this century.

After consecutive years of high-profile problems plaquing our district, it’s refreshing to get through a school year without any new incidents. I do realize there’s room for improvements, there always will be, but not having negative stories grabbing headlines is a good start (negative press…

I am a young father of two beautiful children and I live in the city of Shakopee with my wife. I volunteer within the community as much as I can when I have the free time, and I work frequently in the recovery community in advocacy. So I know how hard it is sometimes to find any amount of ti…

After former Superintendent Rod Thompson pled guilty to 19 felonies last November, I wasn’t planning to write about him ever again. He finally admitted his guilt and was heading to jail. All that was left was the formality of the sentencing, which all parties had pretty much agreed would be …

I was talking with City Administrator Bill Reynolds the other day. With all the bad weather that we have had, we started talking about snow plowing. Bill said he was disappointed in the number of snowplowing complaints he gets. He is very proud of our snowplow drivers. He doesn’t think peopl…

The snow drought is officially over. The one-two punch of bitter cold followed by a couple weeks of heavy snow reminded us of how resilient people in Minnesota are. As I shake off a pinch of cabin fever, it’s a good opportunity to recognize people who helped get 2019 started off on the right note.

Last week, RJ Roder called me out in a letter to the editor because I mentioned that boys hockey has a pattern of losing. I understand Roder’s passion for hockey. My kids also played it, among other sports. Many of our friends are parents we met from having kids on the same teams, and we con…

It is an exciting time to be a S hakopee community m ember! Whether you are a parent with little ones or big ones, a grandparent, or a community member with no students in the district, there is something for every member of Shakopee to be excited about.

There’s a saying that success breeds success. A good example is the teams heading to the Super Bowl on Sunday. The Patriots and the Rams franchises have been to the big game multiple times, which each having at least one win. Both teams’ coaches have a proven history of success and setting r…

Life after high school can be tough, even for those who seemed destined for success or thought they had all of life’s answers at age 18. As many of us can attest, life after high school rarely goes as planned and can be full of obstacles and U-turns that we never could have anticipated. That…

I was in Qdoba recently having supper with my younger son when I bumped into a parent I know. He bought some food, chatted with me briefly, then filled up his water cup with pop and left. Seeing him take pop that he didn’t pay for bothered me.

I’m surprised and disappointed how often the Shakopee Valley News is attacked on social media for perceived biases. Case in point — after a story on the protest at Amazon, a person charged on the Valley News Facebook page, “You seem to be afraid to say ‘Muslim’ in your stories, last week and…

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