Nov. 20 – Dec. 3

!  The Red Cross is facing a critical blood shortage and is issuing an emergency call for eligible blood and platelet donors of all types to give NOW and help save lives.  Blood donations are being distributed to hospitals faster than donations are coming in.  Commit to give and make a difference.  Use the Blood Donor App, visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS to make an appointment.

Upcoming blood donation opportunities:
Visit (where you can download the FREE Red Cross Blood Donor App) or call 1-800-RED-CROSS to make your appointment:
        11/20   Mon.  12;00-6:00              Elks Lodge in Wadena
        11/21  Tues. 8:00-2:00                Elks Lodge in Wadena
        11/21   Tues.  12:00-6:00              Deerwood Auditorium in Deerwood
        11/27  Mon.   2:00-7:00                Upsala High School in Upsala
        11/28  Tues.  9:30-3:30                Unity Bank on Highway 27 in Pierz
        11/28  Tues. 11:00-5:00              Bertha-Hewitt High School in Bertha
        11/29  Wed.   12:00-6:00              CentraCare Health in Long Prairie
        11/30  Thurs. 9:00-3:00                CentraCare Health in Long Prairie

Cass County Public Health is hosting some upcoming walk-in Immunization Clinics for children who are on MA/MnCare or who are un- or under-insured.  Select immunizations are available for adults who are un- or under-insured:

          11/21   Tues.    10-12 & 1-2:30                        Pillager Family Resource Ctr in Pillager
          11/28   Tues.    9:00-10:00                  Cass Co Health, Human & Vet. Services in Walker
For more information, call 218-547-1340 ext. 246

Essentia Health is encouraging lakes area residents to get the flu shot.  There are a number of Walk-In Flu Clinics at each of Essentia Health’s Clinics (Baxter, Brainerd, Crosslake, Emily, Hackensack, Pequot Lakes, Pierz, Pillager and Pine River) OR you can do it by appointment.  Take 10 minutes for flu prevention by calling 218-828-7100 to schedule an appointment at the clinic nearest you.  For the Walk-In Flu Clinic times/locations, visit

The Second Saturdays, the Crossing Arts Alliance has art events for kids at the        Franklin Arts Center.  Cost is $3 per child/$5 per family.  Recommended for ages 5-12, but all welcome with adult supervision.  Classes run from 10:00 a.m. til Noon. 
          Dec 9     Winter Dreams with TyAnne Rezak
For more info., go to or call 833-0416.

Crosslake Lutheran Church is hosting a monthly caregiver support group on the Third Thursday of each month from 10:30-12:00 each day.  The group meets at Crosslake Lutheran Church and is open to anyone who provides care for a loved one.  The group is facilitated by lay leaders and will also include educational sessions on topics of interest.  Call 218-692-3682 for info.

The Heartland Detachment Marine Corp League is looking for donations for the annual Toys for Kids program, which kicks off November 24th.  Right now, in addition toys, the Corp is accepting monetary donations to support the program, as last year, they had 404 families apply for the program and they provided holiday gifts for 961 boys and girls.  They expect this year’s numbers to increase.  Monetary contributions can be mailed to PO Box 2811, Baxter, MN 56425.  Make checks payable to Toys for Kids.  You can also drop off new, unwrapped toys in our lobby here at Hubbard Radio on Dogwood Drive in Baxter.  If you have questions, call 218-764-3170.

**Kinship Partners is looking for mentors for a number of lakes area children who are on a waiting list.  If you would like to make the difference in the life of a child here in our community, please contact Kinship Partners.  Mentors can be individuals, couples, or families.  It doesn’t cost a lot of money, just a little of your time. Not only mentors are needed, but the Kinship Lunch Buddy program is also up and running!  Find out more about Kinship and
the kids at

The annual Wreathes for the Fallen ceremony will take place on Sat. Dec. 16th at 11:00 a.m. at the Minnesota State Veterans Cemetery in Little Falls and Preston.  Volunteers from Camp Ripley along with hundreds of other families and volunteers will place wreathes on all of the gravesites.  To donate to the cause to help purchase a wreath for a grave…or for more information….visit  Everyone is invited to come and assist in the wreath distribution.

It’s time again for the Sertoma Winter Wonderland at the Northland Arboretum!  Starting on Thanksgiving Night (11/23), enjoy the breathtaking lights, reflecting off of the sparkling white snow and strung into captivating displays will delight visitors as they drive through the beautiful lights display.  This spectacular holiday tradition includes a driving tour of more than 80 colorfully animated lit displays. Open Wednesday through Saturday nights from 5:30 - 8:30 pm starting on Thursday, November 23rd through Saturday, December 16th.  ((Open every night from December 20th - 31st.))  The cost is $15/VEHICLE and $50/SMALL BUSES AND LIMOS.  Discount tickets available at Cub Foods, The Brainerd Dispatch, Mid Minnesota Federal Credit Union, and the Northland Arboretum.  More info is online at

The Salvation Army in Brainerd has kicked off its 2017 Red Kettle Campaign and are now looking for more volunteers to ring bells this holiday season.  If you are able to ring bells to help raise $190,000 for the LOCAL Salvation Army between now and December 23rd, please call Leah at 218-829-1120 or register online at  Individuals, couples, groups and ALL are encouraged to register to ring this holiday season!  Don’t forget to GIVE to the campaign as well by making monetary donations to the red kettles wherever you see them in the lakes area this season!

11/20 – 11/26
Nisswa Parks and Recreation has released the winter activities for Kids and Adults.  For the Kids, there are skating lessons, Basketball, hockey for kids aged 7-15 years old, a Babysitter Training Class, and a terrific afterschool art program.   For the Adults, there is a series of three cooking classes put on by the Head Chef and co-owner at Prairie Bay, a retirement seminar to help with Long Term Care, Medicare and Estate Planning, and an essential oils class.  Registration can be done on-line at CITYOFNISSWA.COM or you can request information or ask questions with Matthew Hill at City Hall, 218-963-0047.

The Brainerd Chapter #738 National Association of Active and Retired Federal Employees will meet on Tues. Nov. 21st at the Pizza Ranch in Baxter.  Social time starts at 11:30… lunch will be served at noon.  The presentation will be hosted by Tina Elder from TRIAD.

Home Instead Senior Care announces the start-up of the 14th annual Be a Santa to a Senior Program which provides companionship, holiday cheer and gifts to seniors who may otherwise not receive a gift this holiday season.  It’s easy to help: pick up a paper ornament containing a gift request, such as slippers, a blanket or a pharmacy gift card and return it with the requested gift.  Be a Santa to a Senior trees will be open to the public Nov. 22nd through-Dec. 15th at the following locations in Brainerd, Crosby and Baxter. They include Brainerd locations such as Home Instead Senior Care, Guide Point Pharmacy (Crosby, too), Crow Wing County Social Services, The Center, Edward Jones’ Greg Bennett office, Caribou Coffee in the East Brainerd Mall AND Baxter.  Also in Baxter at the Black Bear Lodge & Saloon.  Monetary donations will also be welcome.  More info can be found at 


Everyone is invited to this year’s Thanksgiving Day Community Meal on Thanksgiving Day, Thurs. Nov. 23rd at the Brainerd American Legion.  Dinner will be served from 11:30 to 1:00pm and is hosted by the Legion, Elks, Eagles and VFW.  The meal is free, but donations would be appreciated.  Proceeds will go to benefit the Salvation Army Food Shelf.  Delivery available to those not able to attend the meal.  Call any of the clubs to make arrangements for meal delivery.

The Sharing Bread Soup Kitchen in Brainerd is asking the public for help in feeding the hungry in the lakes area.  The Soup Kitchen recently took a hit in funding and is prayerfully looking to raise at least $20,000 by Thanksgiving.  The Soup Kitchen serves meals every day of the week as
a non-denominational, non-profit Christian organization that opens its doors to all who come with no questions asked.  Their mission is to demonstrate the love of Christ by providing meals to the hungry of our community.  If you can make a monetary donation to the Sharing Bread Soup Kitchen at this time, please do by logging on to  or by mailing a check to P.O. Box 632 in Brainerd, 56401.

It’s time again for the Sertoma Winter Wonderland at the Northland Arboretum!  Starting on Thanksgiving Night, enjoy the breathtaking lights, reflecting off of the sparkling white snow and strung into captivating displays will delight visitors as they drive through the beautiful lights display.  This spectacular holiday tradition includes a driving tour of more than 80 colorfully animated lit displays. Open Wednesday through Saturday nights from 5:30 - 8:30 pm starting on Thursday, November 23rd through Saturday, December 16th.  ((Open every night from December 20th - 31st.))  The cost is $15/VEHICLE and $50/SMALL BUSES AND LIMOS.  Discount tickets available at Cub Foods, The Brainerd Dispatch, Mid Minnesota Federal Credit Union, and the Northland Arboretum.  More info is online at
The local Shriner’s Club is set to host the annual Turkey Run on Thanksgiving morning, Nov. 23rd at the (NEW LOCATION) National Guard Armory in Brainerd.  The event features a 5K Run or 1 Mile Walk starting at 9:00 a.m.  For registration information, log on to

The 6th Annual Pierz Healy High School Turkey Trot will take place on Thanksgiving Morning (Thurs. Nov. 23rd) with registration starting at 7:15 at the High School MAC.  A free kid’s fun run will start at 8:15.  The 5K Walk/Run begins at 8:30.  Same day registration is $20 and includes a t-shirt and refreshments after the event.  All proceeds benefit Special Olympics. 

Bring the family out for the fun at Aitkin’s World Famous Fish House Parade on Fri. Nov. 24th starting at 1:00!  Events will be happening all over the town of Aitkin that day, including a silent auction, a 5K Run/Walk, craft sale, a snowmobile display and a number of free showings of “Despicable Me 3” at the Rialto Theater!  Just don’t miss the parade at 1:00!  To enter a float in the parade, contact the Aitkin Chamber at 218-927-2316 or send an email to

The City of Nisswa welcomes the holiday season with a countdown to lighting up the town that culminates with a fireworks display Fri. Nov. 24 at the Annual City of Lights Celebration! The downtown gets hopping at 2:00 with horse-drawn wagon rides, live reindeer, storytelling, food merchants, bonfires, hot cider and donut holes at the Pioneer Village and holiday carolers.  Then, the area lights up all at once at 5:30 p.m., with holiday lights adorning trees and fences, stores and other buildings. Santa Claus makes an appearance and fireworks shoot up over town at 7:30 pm.  For a schedule of events, visit

11/27 – 12/3
The Good Samaritan Society invites the public to its Bethany Book Fair on Mon. Nov. 27th in the Community Room at Bethany.  You’ll find books, toys, gifts and more and it’s a convenient way to do your Christmas shopping while supporting Bethany residents and staff!  The Book Fair will run from 9:00-3:00 at 804 Wright Street in Brainerd. 

The Brainerd Community Theater Production of “Mr. Burns – A Post Electric Play” will take place at Chalberg Theater on the CLC Brainerd campus Thurs. Nov. 30 – Dec. 2nd and again Dec. 7 & 8th at 7:30 with an additional 2:00 matinee on Sat. Dec. 9th.  General admission tickets are $12 for adults…$8 for those 18 and under.  Get tickets online at or by calling 855-8199.

Be in Crosslake the first Saturday in December for Holiday At The Dam!  Santa will be at the US Army Corps Campgrounds from 1 - 4 p.m. on Sat. Dec. 2nd where you can enjoy a horse-drawn sleigh ride, sip hot cider, warm up near the campfire with s'mores, and more!  Swag bags featuring Crosslake merchant deals, discounts and information will be free to the first 150 adult attendees.   Bring a new unwrapped gift donation to the Dam, for Christmas for Kids.  This gift drive offers less fortunate families living in our community the opportunity to receive gifts and a meal to make their holiday special. 





The public is invited to the Bethany Holiday Bake Sale & Boutique on Sat. Dec. 2nd.  The event will run from 9:00-1:00 at Good Samaritan Society-Bethany at 804 Wright Street in Brainerd.  Enjoy craft vendors, a silent auction, door prizes and photos with Santa.  The event is free to attend.  Refreshments will be available.

Start your holiday season in Little Falls with the Christmas Tours, Nov. 24th – Dec. 3rd.   
**Linden Hill Mansion (self-guided) Tours will run Mon-Sat. 1:00-7:00…and Sun. 11:00-6:00.  Tickets are $12 for adults…$5 for 12-17 years….Free for 11 and under.  More at
**Rosenmeier Home Tours “Nutcracker Suite” will run Mon-Sat. 1:00-7:00…and Sun. 11:00-6:00.  Tickets are $2 for Adults… Free to 18 and under.  More at
**Charles Lindbergh House & Museum “A WWI Christmas” will run Fri-Sun. 11:00-5:00.  Tickets are $10 for adults…..Seniors/Veterans/Active Military/College are $8…. $6 for those 5-17….4 and under are free.  More at .....
**The Minnesota Fishing Museum & Hall of Fame’s “Do You See What I See?”
will operate daily from 12:00-7:00 featuring over 30 decorated trees, holiday displays, wreathes and gift baskets.  Admission is a free will donation.  More at


12/4 – 12/10

The Friends of the Brainerd Public Library are bringing acclaimed authors to the Brainerd Public Library the first Monday of every month at 12:00 to speak about their latest work and the craft of writing.  The author celebrated this month will be Eunice Wiebolt, author of “Cooking With More Confidence.”  Mon. Dec. 4th.  For more info on the event, call218-829-5574 or look up Brainerd Public Library on Facebook. 

It’s time to enjoy some Spaghetti With Santa and help share the warmth with those in need!  On Mon. Dec. 4th, guests are invited to a spaghetti dinner starting at 5:00 at First Lutheran Church in Brainerd (424 S. 8th St…Norwood Entrance, please).  Guests are asked to bring a donation to help the Brainerd’s Leo Club to help collect hats, gloves and socks for homeless youth.  The event is sponsored by the Brainerd Lions Club.

Everyone is invited to Crosby Memorial Park on Wed. Dec. 6th for Christmas In The Park!  The FREE event will run from 4:00-7:00pm and will be fun for the whole family.  Enjoy live reindeer, Mr. & Mrs. Claus (bring camera and wish lists!)… Free chili, cookies and hot chocolate… A live Nativity & Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides…Crafts, entertainment and bon fire.  The event is sponsored by the Cuyuna Lakes Chamber of Commerce.

Plan to attend the Central MN Adult & Teen Challenge Christmas Concert on Thurs.
Dec. 7th or Fri. Dec. 8th at the Heritage Church in Baxter.  The concert will begin at 6:00 each night and is free to attend.  A freewill offering will be collected.  A great show for the whole family!  More info at

As a kick-off to the 2017 RadioThon to End Child Abuse (which takes place Dec.7th and 8th), you are invited to enjoy a Brat & Pop lunch for only $3 on Thurs. Dec. 7th starting at 10:00 am!  Brats and pop will be served at the Westgate Mall in Brainerd from 10:00 – 2:00 and free delivery is available for PRE-ORDERS of 5 or more brats if ordered BEFORE MON. DEC. 3rd.  To pre order, call Whitnee at 454-6443 or send an email to

As part of the 2017 fall season for the Grassroots Concerts in Nisswa, Sally Barris will perform on Fri. Dec. 8th at 7:30 in the Live Well night Club and Coffee Bar.  General admission tickets are $10 for adults….$5 for kids under 12 when accompanied by an adult.  Doors open at 6:30. The Live Well Night Club is in the Journey Church on County Road 18 in Nisswa. More info at

First Lutheran Church in Brainerd will host a Cookie Walk & Mini Bazaar on Sat. Dec. 9th from 9:00-2:00 in the church’s Koinonia Hall.  Enjoy amazing crafts, white elephant gifts, a bake sale, cookies, lefse, Krumkake and Christmas candy.  A soup and bread lunch will be served for $5.00 from 10:00 – 1:00.  Homemade soup to go is available!  First Lutheran Church is on South 8th St. in Brainerd.  For more info, visit

The Growers & Makers Marketplace will be open on Sat. Dec. 9 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the old Crestliner Boat Factory in Little Falls.  Shop for local produce, meat and dairy, baked goods, local artwork, and more.  Enjoy live music, cooking demos and kids activities.  For more information, log on to

An electronics recycling drive is planned for Sat. Dec. 9th from 10:00-2:00 at Deerwood Technologies on Archibald Road in Deerwood.  For a fee of $.55 per pound, local businesses and residents may bring in electronic items like computer towers, monitors, laptops, speakers, keyboard, mice, routers, network hubs, cable boxes, batteries, printers, copiers, fax machines, VCRs, DVD & CD plyers, radios, PDAs & MP3 players, cell phones, telephones, extra cables, digital cameras, camcorders, power supplies and transformers, microwaves, electric brooms/sweepers, and small electronics such as razors, toothbrushes, hairdryers and curling irons!  Televisions will be taken for $15 each.  Old holiday lights can also be dropped off.  NO MAJOR APPLIANCES will be taken.  Proceeds from the recycling drive will benefit continuing education for area youth through the Deerwood Technologies Scholarship Fund.  For more info, visit or email

It’s time for the 6th Annual Santa’s Bobbin’ Into Town in Pequot Lakes on Sat. Dec. 9th! 
At 3:00, visit with Santa & Mrs. Claus at the Cole Memorial Building where you will also enjoy story time, Jingles the Elf, animal balloons and a magician.  Also, from 3:00-5:00 attend the Open House in the Cole Memorial Building’s lower level at the Pequot Lakes Historical Museum.  From 4:00-6:00, head to Trailside Park to meet Santa’s Reindeer, bonfire with cocoa, s’mores, caroling, free horse/wagon rides and a kids bobber hunt!  At 4:30 stop into the Jack Pine Center to have photos with Santa and $4 kids dinners at the Hungry Loon Café!  At 6:00, enjoy the “Light Up The Night Parade” on Government Drive!  The event is sponsored by Community Action Pequot Lakes and the Babinski Foundation.

The Pine River Chamber of Commerce is celebrating the Parade of Lights Week in Pine River!  On Sat. Dec. 9th, enjoy holiday open houses around the town and area.  From 12:00-2:00 take a ride on a horse-drawn wagon.  The Pine River Library will host a Bake/Mini Cookbook Sale from 10:00-1:00.  From 10:00-2:00, check out the indoor farmer’s market at the Warehouse.  Don’t forget to have lunch with Santa between 11:00-1:00 at the Pine River American Legion.  The Parade of Lights will begin at 5:00 with fireworks to follow at 6:30.  For more info on the day’s events, call 800-728-6926.