The Family Readiness Group in Brainerd is meeting to organize Christmas cards being sent to area troops.
Minnesota National Guard's Family Readiness Group Headquarters and Headquarters Company will meet 7 p.m. Monday at the Brainerd Armory. Family members, friends and community supporters are welcome to attend. They will sign Christmas cards with notes of encouragement and mail them to soldiers before they leave for Iraq.
The group will add a gift card for soldiers and have cards addressed and ready for mail.
The Family Readiness Group aims to provide time for people to meet and support each other, visit and ask questions. The group will provide pizza and pop. People are welcome to attend whether their soldier is deployed or not.
Those attending are asked to RSVP by Nov. 19 so the group can determine how many pizzas to order.
For more information, contact Jodi Taggart at (218) 546-6170 or (218) 838-4335 cell phone, Shannon Siekas at 825-3996 or 851-7719, Pam Biermaier at 828-1083 or 838-5961, or e-mail email@example.com.
Festival of Trees events announced
Good Samaritan Communities of Brainerd and Pine River will host the second annual Festival of Trees Saturday through Nov. 27 at the Legacy Clubhouse at Cragun's Resort in East Gull Lake.
During Thanksgiving week, the clubhouse will be filled with designer-decorated trees sponsored by area organizations, businesses and families.
Festival events are free unless otherwise noted. A goodwill offering is appreciated. Proceeds will benefit Good Samaritan Communities of Brainerd and Pine River.
* Gala reception and silent and live tree auction, 6:30-10 p.m. Saturday, $50.
* Sunday Brunch Concert featuring the Brainerd High School Chamber Ensembles and St. Cecilia Trio, 11 a.m.-2 p.m. Sunday, brunch at 11:45 a.m., $20. Trinity Lutheran Church will give the presentation, "Give Yourself A Gift."
* Seniors' and Children's Day, 1 to 5 p.m. Monday-Nov. 23.
* Tinsel and Tea Cup Party featuring a program by Pastor Lilja Behr and Sharon Carlson, 2:30 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, $15.
* North Pole Arts Festival, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Nov. 26-27. The arts festival will feature gifts, plus the Samaritan Boutique featuring holiday craft items made by Bethany, Woodland and Whispering Pines residents.
The festival center stage will feature area choirs, singers and musicians throughout the week. Cub Foods will provide free hot apple cider and cookies.
For more information or to order tickets, call (218) 855-6616 or consult www.good-sambrainerdpineriver.com.
Crow Wing County Fair Association elects officers
Rosanne Caughey, Kay Johnson, Barb Burgwald and Tom Malloy were elected to three-year terms and Daniel Thesing to a two-year term as Crow Wing County Fair Association directors at the Nov. 4 annual meeting.
The 2004-05 officers are Caughey, president; Dave Schubert, vice president; Al VandenBerge, treasurer; and Johnson, secretary.
The 2005 fair dates will be Aug. 2-7.
GIS Day celebrated in Staples
STAPLES -- The Region 5 Development Commission will host its second annual Geographic Information Systems Day open house 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Wednesday.
The day will feature a scavenger hunt with handheld GPS units. Bring a GPS handheld unit if you have one. There will be refreshments and door prize drawings.
GIS Day is conducted each year on the Wednesday of the National Geographic Society's Geography Awareness Week. GIS Day is a global event that celebrates geographic information system technology.
For more information, call the Region 5 Development Commission GIS Department at (218) 894-3233 or visit the Web site www.regionfive.org.
Sixth-grade immunization clinic set
The Crow Wing County Health Department and Brainerd School District will offer a Hepatitis B and MMR walk-in immunization clinic 3:30 to 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Brainerd High School media center for sixth- or seventh-graders who are behind in their immunizations.
Shots are $5 each; however, no one will be denied access because of inability to pay.
A parent or legal guardian is required to accompany the student.
If children have a special medical problem and cannot be vaccinated, or if parents are conscientiously opposed to immunizations, they may receive a legal exemption.
People who do not have any out-of-pocket expenses to see a doctor for vaccines are not eligible for the Minnesota Vaccines for Children Program and should schedule an appointment with their doctor's office.
For more information, call 824-1098.
Applications for Christmas programs being taken
Applications for the Salvation Army and Toys for Kids Christmas programs will be taken 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 3 p.m. Tuesdays-Fridays through Nov. 24 at 208 S. Fifth St.
Applications will be accepted for the following programs: Food Baskets, Angel Tree (providing new clothing to children) and the New Toy program. To apply, bring a currently dated piece of mail and identification.
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