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Most of us are familiar with the term “bucket list.” It’s a list of things you want to do before you die, whether they’re experiences, accomplishments, or something else. The term was popularized in the 2007 movie “The Bucket List.” In the film, Morgan Freeman’s and Jack Nicholson’s characte…

One of the biggest roadblocks to getting better at something is being too worried about making mistakes. Or being too worried about looking foolish by trying to do something new and failing miserably, possibly embarrassing one’s self in the process.

When I heard a story about a teenager in our area who’s reluctant to reveal that she’s Muslim because she’s worried about being harassed, it bothered me for several days. No one should have to hide their religion, or any other beliefs or personal attributes, to accommodate others or to avoid…

As far as I know, Ali Styba is the only female in the Shakopee High School senior class to be a triple sport athlete. She competes in cross-country, hockey and lacrosse. After fielding several scholarship offers, she accepted one from Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey, to p…

One perk of the Shakopee school system is that it offers programs such as College in the Schools, Project Lead The Way, and Post Secondary Enrollment Options that let high school students take college-level courses for free. Some classes are through the University of Minnesota, and they’re t…

I love everything about Christmas. I love that people are generally happier at this time of the year, typically spend time with family and friends, and have a feeling of generosity. There’s something special and uplifting about holiday lights, caroling, and having a decorated tree in our hom…

When Cameron Withrow graduated from Shakopee High School in May 2017, he wasn’t sure what he wanted to do. He was working as a pizza delivery driver to earn some spending cash, but didn’t know what he wanted for a career. Like many others in his class, he felt pressure to go to college.

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…

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