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Mayor's Notebook: Crosslake is buzzing

November is a very special month for us in Crosslake. Not only do we remember our veterans who served and serve our country, but it is also a time to gather with family and friends and give thanks for all the gifts we are given in so many different ways.

And then of course it is time to begin our holiday season. Word has it (from Santa) the elves have really been busy this year adding decorations to Light up the Dam! And Ted from public works and his able bodied helpers have been working hard to decorate the street lights at the corner of County Roads 66 and 3. I have also noticed that residents and businesses have added their own special touches so everyone will be welcomed to Crosslake in fine fashion. And all are invited to join us for another Holiday at the Dam on Dec. 2 from 1-4 p.m. Santa will be waiting for you!

If you haven't noticed, the city of Crosslake is still buzzing with activity. The new Dream Island Bridge is open and looks great. Anchor Point Road repaving is behind us, preliminary work has started on Manhattan Point Boulevard, and the upgrades to the sewer treatment plant are continuing. Construction of the new school is underway, townhomes and single family homes are being built along with other commercial developments. To put this in perspective, permits issued through our planning and zoning department year to date are 342. The total number of permits issued last year at the same time was 230. All this activity requires teamwork and a strong partnership with many entities including engineering firms, contractors, developers and planners, as well as city staff.

And it is not too early to plan for 2018. On Jan. 11, the city will host a workshop for city staff, the directors of public works, parks and rec, and planning and zoning, along with their respective commission presidents. Also included in the workshop will be the fire and public safety departments, the Economic Development Commission and the team from Region 5 and NJPA who have worked with us on updating our comprehensive plan.

We already have established the budgets for the respective departments; however, this workshop will be an opportunity to share our ideas and perspectives on how we build a strong team/partnership, which builds a strong organization, which builds a strong community.

While this workshop is focused internally, we need to also recognize the importance of building stronger partnerships with other community organizations, such as the Crosslakers, Chamber of Commerce, Army Corp of Engineers, Whitefish CHain Yacht Club (free swimming lessons, youth boater training and buoy placement), Whitefish Area Property Owners Association, Crosslake Ideal Lions and the American Legion, to name just a few. We have many opportunities for greater communication and cooperation.

I began this article talking about the gifts we receive and the strength of families. But, some of our Crosslake friends may not be so fortunate. Please remember Christmas for Kids Dec. 2 at Maucieri's from 4-7 p.m. and Dec. 6 at Riverside Restaurant beginning at 7 p.m.

Many years ago, I cut a reflection out of an Ann Landers column in the Minneapolis Star Tribune that we have read at every family Thanksgiving celebration since. Let me leave you with these thoughts:

"O Great Spirit:

We Thank You for food and remember the hungry.

We Thank You for health and remember the sick.

We Thank You for friends and remember the friendless.

We Thank You for freedom and remember the enslaved.

May these remembrances stir us to service."

This article reflects my personal perspectives and opinions and does NOT necessarily speak for the council as a whole. So, if you have questions or concerns with anything said here, stop in at City Hall, Wednesdays from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. for a cup of coffee or just to chat. I will be out of the office Nov. 21 — 28 celebrating Thanksgiving with my family.