Jan. 14 – Jan. 27

JANUARY IS NATIONAL BLOOD DONOR MONTH and the American Red Cross continues to face 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:
      Tues.      1/15            12:00-6:00             Hill City Assembly of God in Hill City
     Wed.       1/16            12:00-6:00             Emily City Hall in Emily
     Thurs.     1/17            12:00-6:00             Our Savior’s Luth. Church in Pequot Lks.
     Thurs.     1/17            12:00-6:00             First Lutheran Church in Aitkin

     Fri.          1/18            9:00-3:00               First Lutheran Church in Aitkin
     Fri.          1/18            12:00-6:00             Good Sam. Society Bethany in Brainerd

     Tues.       1/22            1:00-7:00               St. Francis Center In Little Falls

     Wed.       1/23            12:00-6:00             St. Francis Center in Little Falls
     Thurs.     1/24            8:30-2:30               St. Francis Center in Little Falls
     Thurs.     1/24            12:00-6:00             Motley United Methodist Church in Motley
     Fri.          1/25            12:00-6:00             Bertha-Hewitt High School in Bertha
     Thurs.     1/31            8:00-2:00               Camp Ripley Armory in Little Falls

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:
     Wed                             9:30-11:30             Pine River-Backus Family Center in P.R.
Fri                               10:00-12:00           Northland Area Family Center in Remer

     Tues        1/15            10-12 & 1-2:30       Pillager Family Resource Center / Pillager
     Thurs.     1/22           9:00 – 11:00           Cass Co. Health, Human & Vet. Serv
For more information, call 218-547-1340 ext. 246

Crow Wing County and Lakes Area Law Enforcement have come together to introduce The Vitals App.  Vitals is the new app that helps protect people with visible and invisible conditions and disabilities by voluntarily communicating critical information to law enforcement and first responders. Each Vitals individual is assigned a Vitals beacon that transmits a private and secure signal to authorized first responders that are within 80 feet, allowing them temporary access to critical information that can help the individual and law enforcement de-escalate what could become a dangerous or emergency situation.  To learn more, or to register for the service, visit or text VITALS to 797979.



In an effort to provide a safe environment to share stories, provide support and education to those who have lost a loved one to suicide, a Survivors of Suicide Loss Support Group invites you to its bi-weekly Monday meetings on the first and third Monday of each month.  The group meets from 7:00-8:30 at Lutheran Church of the Cross on County Road 13 in Nisswa.  This is a group for adults only.  With questions, contact Jeri Borgwarth at

Brainerd Lakes Area residents are encouraged to turn in your empty toner and ink jet cartridges at either of The Office Shop locations (Brainerd or Aitkin) for recycling.  By doing so, you will be helping the Zachary Johnson Kids with Cancer Fund.  The fund offers grants to surrounding area families with a dependent child (age 21 or under) who has any form of cancer.  It can be used for anything that the patient or caregiver wishes.  If you are interested in applying for a grant, contact Riverwood Foundation or stop at either Office Shop location.  Or to donate, visit or call 218-927-5158.

The City of Brainerd will use Crow Wing County Alert powered by EverBridge to make sure you know about issues that may affect your safety. This system allows the City of Brainerd to contact thousands of residents in seconds, so you can find out about an emergency right away.  Receive important messages from the City of Brainerd via email, phone, and much more!  Get up-to-the-minute information about severe weather, road closures, snow emergencies, event cancellations, and much more!  To register for the Crow Wing County Alert, visit 


Tootie Harris is pleased to announce that she will be providing the Silver & Fit Exercise & Healthy Aging Program at the Nisswa Community Events Center to help older adults achieve improved health through regular exercise.  The Silver & Fit program was designed to provide Medicare beneficiaries with opportunities to improve their fitness by offering no cost or low cost access to contracted trainers across the country.  The class schedule will start in January 2019 on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 10:00.  Advanced registration is required.  Call Tootie at 712-330-6312 to reserve your spot today. 

History and Brainerd Public Schools history, is made every day.  The missions of BPS Archives are to protect and preserve the history of BPS, its students, graduates, teachers and staff through the collection and display of BPS-related artifacts.  John Erickson, the BPS Archivist & Curator, is looking for artifacts, items and donations to BPS Archives that may currently be hidden away in your attic or basement just waiting to be displayed, talked about and appreciated.  If you have any items (BHS letter jackets, flyers, photos, pamphlets, pins, crowns, etc) that you would like to donate to the cause, please call John at 218-330-1780 or send an email to 




**January is National Mentoring Month and 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 time.  Visit for more information.

The 29th Annual Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza
is set for Sat. Jan. 26th on Gull Lake’s Hole-In-The-Day Bay (ice conditions-permitting).  Tickets to participate are $50 and can be purchased on-line at, or at participating businesses (Fleet Farm, Cash Wise Liquor Brd/Baxter, Holiday Stores in Baxter, Nisswa and Brainerd, S&W Bait & Tackle, and Super America in Baxter).  For more information in the contest, the rules, parking, beneficiaries and more, visit 

If you are looking to volunteer more in 2019, please visit the United Way of Crow Wing and Southern Cass County’s website at  There, you can click on the Volunteer tab.  Choose the organizations you’d like to help or the people you’d like to work with and the United Way will send you notifications when volunteer opportunities arise that you have chosen!  No commitment… Just Volunteer… make a difference – visit

Want to introduce your kids to the sport of Curling?  You can bring your child/ren ages 6 to 18 to the ice of the Brainerd Curling Club for a fun and FREE introduction to the sport of Curling.  They’ll learn some of the rules and etiquette of the game while working on skill development.  Each session will be led by experienced instructors.  Participants should wear clean, rubber-soled shoes, and warm, loose-fitting clothes.  (Temp is 45).  Parents can watch from the comfort of the social area.  Call the Brainerd Curling Club for more information.  The sessions run from 2:00 to 4:00 on:

Sun. Jan. 20    

Sun. Feb. 3     

Sun. Feb. 4     

Sun. Feb 17    

Sun. Feb. 24

The Crossing Arts Alliance in downtown Brainerd offers fun events for KIDS every second Saturday of the month from 10:00 to 11:30… AND from 12:00-1:30.  A $3 per child (or $5 per family) donation for materials is requested (but no child will be turned away for inability to pay).  Pre-registration IS REQUIRED for the classes.

Feb. 9           Valentine’s Arty Party

Mar. 9           Intro to Animation

Apr. 13         Watercolor Painting

May 11         Figure Studies

For more information and to register (required), visit


1/14 – 1/20


The Minnesota Dept. of Health, Crow Wing County, Crow Wing Energized and partners who support community driven solutions to create tobacco-free environments and promote quitting smoking are all part of the Tobacco Coalition and the public is invited to come learn more about the coalition on Tues. Jan. 15th.  If you want to learn more about local tobacco use and want to join others to create community change, please attend this meeting at Essentia Health St. Joseph’s Medical Center in the Thabes 1 Confernce Room.  The gathering will take place from 11:00-1:00.  If you have questions, call 828-7422.

Area employers are invited to a Workforce Community Conversation event on Tues. Jan. 15th hosted by the Minnesota PIPELINE (Private Investment, Public Education, Labor and Industry Experience) Program.  The event runs from 10:00-11:30 at the Brainerd Lakes Chamber office at 224 Washington Street in Brainerd.  Attendees are invited to share their workforce challenges and successes, network with other business leaders and learn about the PIPELINE Program’s innovative approach.  Focus will be on the industries of advanced manufacturing, health care, information technology and agriculture, PIPELINE supports emplyers through consulting and program development.  RSVP by calling 651-284-5353.

Central Lakes College will kick off its spring Cultural Thursday series with alumna Kylie Geatz, who will speak about her trip to Australia working as an au pair. The event will be held at 12:00 noon on Thurs. Jan. 17th in the Chalberg Theatre. It is free and open to the public. As an au pair, she provided childcare in exchange for accommodation and pocket money. With the experience, she was able to immerse herself in the culture and live like a local.  For more information about this presentation or the Cultural Thursdays Series, please contact Tracey Kloeckl-Jiménez at 218-855-8183.

Mick Sterling Presents “A Billy Joel State of Mind” on Fri. Jan. 18th at CLC’s Brainerd campus in the Chalberg Theater at 3:00 AND at 7:30.  Both shows, led by Mick Sterling, a stellar four piece horn section, full percussion, the double piano combination of Peter Guertin and Charlie Peterson, two violins and an incredible band totaling 14 members – you will thoroughly enjoy the music of Billy Joel.  Tickets are $22 for adults / $15 Under 18.  Tickets can be purchased online at or by calling 855-8199.

The Pequot Lakes 25th Annual Antique Snowmobile Rendezvous will take place in Trailside Park Fri. and Sat. Jan. 18th and 19th in Pequot Lakes.  The event features trail rides, a show, performance demonstrations and a swap meet.  To learn more specifics about the two-day event, visit 

Back to Hack Snowmobile Days will take place in and around Hackensack Fri. – Sun. Jan. 18th-20th.  Back to Hack celebrates winter with activities including the Frostbite Your Fanny 5K Race, Paul Bunyan Family Fishing Contest, the Penguin Plunge, Snow Sculpting Contest, Community Bonfire and Fireworks.  Returning this year will be horse racing, a silent auction and Sleigh of Spirits Raffle.  For more information, visit 






Deep Portage Learning Center invites everyone to participate in the 40th Annual Winter Rendezvous—a fun-filled day of old-time games and activities—on Sat. Jan. 19th.  Registration will begin at 9:30 am, and the day will wrap up with an awards ceremony beginning at 2 pm.  Journey back in time and learn about the cultural heritage of Minnesota. In this one-day event activities will be based on traditions from Lumberjacks, Voyageurs and Native Americans.  Try your hand at events such as the tomahawk toss, snowsnakes, spear throwing using atlatls, the cross-cut saw, trap shooting, northwoods curling and many more! Bring the whole family to join in a friendly community competition while learning about the rich cultural history of the area. The participation fee is $5 for adults and $3 for children under 12, seniors and Deep Portage members. Lunch is an additional $5 for adults and $3 for children, seniors and members. Please feel free to bring your own bag lunch.    

For reservations or additional information, call Deep Portage at (888) 280-9908 or visit the website at or on Facebook.


The Brainerd branch of the American Assocation of University Women presents the 12th Annual Brain Buster Trivia Challenge on Sat. Jan. 19th at the First Lutheran Church in Brainerd.  Check-in will be from 1:00-1:45, play begins at 2:00.  The cost is $90 per team – with up to 6 players per team.    There is a prize for Best Team Costume.  Enjoy free coffee and treats and fun prizes!  Register online and pay at the event – visit  The winning team gets bragging rights and a cheap traveling trophy!



1/21 – 1/27

Join the Brainerd Lakes Chamber for another Business After Hours on Tues. Jan. 22nd at The 612 Station in downtown Brainerd.   Business After Hours runs from 4:30 to 6:30 and guests are encouraged to bring their business cards, be ready to network, have fun, learn more about this chamber business and maybe win a prize!

Take a joy-filled ride through the musical life of Minnesota’s own Bobby Vee, performed by his sons, nephew and grandson at a show at 7:30pm on Fri. Jan. 25th at Brainerd’s Tornstrom Auditorium.  The Killer Vees “Remembering Bobby Vee will celebrate the legacy of Bobby Vee in music, stories and video.  Tickets are $25 adult / $18 Under 18 (if you purchase 10 or more adult tickets, you’ll receive a 15% discount!)  Get tickets online at or call the box office at 855-8199.

The Brainerd Public Library is hosting a series of six workshops led by local indie author Carissa Andrews to help writers out with their dreams to publish their work. The first session takes place on Sat. Jan. 26th at 10:00 a.m. Writers ages teen and up are welcome, no matter where they are in their writing process.
Register by calling the library at 218-829-5574 or visit Facebook and search Brainerd Public Library. 

While Minnesota winter gets underway, local food fans can still find an outlet at the SPROUT Growers & Makers Marketplace monthly events.  The launch of the 2019 season, which includes 6 market days, one Saturday per month, takes place Sat. Jan. 26th from 10:00 to 3:00 at their facility (609 13th Street – Door 8) in Little Falls.  The marketplace is open to all community members to enjoy local shopping, live music and freshly made pizzas! For more information, visit

The 29th Annual Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza is set for Sat. Jan. 26th on Gull Lake’s Hole-In-The-Day Bay (ice conditions-permitting).  Tickets to participate are $50 and can be purchased on-line at, or at participating businesses (Fleet Farm, Cash Wise Liquor Brd/Baxter, Holiday Stores in Baxter, Nisswa and Brainerd, S&W Bait & Tackle, and Super America in Baxter).  For more information in the contest, the rules, parking, beneficiaries and more, visit 


1/28 – 1/31

Long Lake Conservation Center, in Palisade, is hosting a Minnesota Master Naturalist Volunteer Training beginning Mon. Jan. 28th.  Master Naturalist volunteers complete a 40-hour hands-on course with expert instructors and fellow learners – studying natural history, environmental interpretation, and conservation stewardship. Final certification comes with the completion of 40 hours of volunteer service
. The classes will be held Monday through Friday, January 28 – February 1, 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. For more information and register go on-line go to For registration assistance call Julie at 320‑589‑1711, ext. 2120.

Youth On Stage Open Mic is back and ready for 2019.  The next monthly event will be held Mon. Jan. 28th at the Brainerd Eagles Club.  The group encourages musicians, poets, comedians, magicians, dancers, singers or any other family-friends talent to join them from 6:30-8:30pm.  For more info, visit

The public is invited to a Neighborhood Energy Workshop on Thurs. Jan. 31st at the Wadena-Deer Creek High School in Wadena.  From 5:00-7:00, enjoy a free meal and learn about ways to save energy and money in your home.  Get help reading your utility bill, learn about energy assistance and connect directly with service providers.  To register, call Community Ed at 218-632-3232.