City prepares for Lake Street closure July 26 & 27

Lake Street Closure and Detour. Courtesy City of Wayzata.

The City of Wayzata is notifying the public that portions of Lake Street in Wayzata, MN will close on July 26th & 27th.

The closure will allow Contractor Adolfson & Peterson to install patios on the Hotel Landing, according to a release: “The roadway will be closed directly in front of the Landing hotel, between Engel Street and the roundabout…”

Officials indicate the road will close at 5:00 am and re-open at 5:00 on both days.

City Hall was filled with complaints of wrong way drivers and frustrated motorists the last time this street was closed, as the closure occurred as the Bushaway Road bridge was under construction.

Image courtesy City of Wayzata.

Wayzata Alum Barrett Anderson continues TV work at CBS in Duluth

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Former intern and Wayzata High School Alumni Barrett Anderson continues to be successful as a Sports Anchor for KBJR-TV Channel 3 in Duluth MN.

A new 30 second spot (above) indicates the prepwork and approach required to convey stories successfully in the broadcast environment. “I’ve had people say to me, you just show up for work and read the teleprompter. If only you knew,” states Anderson. “Before you even come in to work you have to think, what am I going to cover today, how am I going to display that in a way that the viewers are going to receive it best.”

Anderson has recently been featured in a number of commercials for the CBS affiliate. An example of her work is below:

Anderson is the daughter of Brad and Maari Anderson–a local couple with extensive Wayzata ties. Brad is the former Head Football Coach for the Trojans and Maari is a local real estate agent for Fazendin Realtors.

Channel 3 in Duluth is Barrett’s 2nd professional television stop in Minnesota, having previously worked at KEYC Channel 12 in Mankato. Other experience includes stints at Fox Sports North and

Good luck and congratulations on your continued success Barrett!


High Bacteria levels close Wayzata Beach until further notice

Wayzata Beach Closed. Image courtesy City of Wayzata.
Wayzata Beach is not open due to high bacteria levels, according to the City of Wayzata.
Hennepin County regularly monitors water quality at the popular recreational spot on Lake Minnetonka. Tests conducted on Monday July 17th confirm the beach must close. If history repeats itself as in years past, the beach will be open again for summer fun shortly.
Stay tuned to, your official Wayzata Beach monitoring news leader.

Image courtesy: City of Wayzata.

Wayzata Historical Society 35th Anniversary Celebration!

Join us for a special event to celebrate the Wayzata Historical Society’s 35th Anniversary! We would love to have you join us, even if you are not a member of the society.

The celebration will be held at the Wayzata Depot on Wednesday, August 16, 2017. There will be a pig roast picnic dinner as well as narrated tours aboard the streetcar steamboat Minnehaha. The celebration will begin at 5:00 p.m., with your choice of a 5:00 or 7:00 p.m. boat tour. (Note that the 7:00 boat tour eats before departure! Due to capacity limits, you will not be able to change your tour choice once you’ve signed up.)

  • Ticket prices for members are $23.00 for both dinner and boat tour, $20.00 for boat tour only, and $8.00 for dinner only.
  • Ticket prices for non-members are $28.00 for both dinner and boat tour, $25.00 for boat tour only, and $8.00 for dinner only.
Please note that a tentative rain date has been set for Wednesday, August 23. But in the meantime, we look forward to seeing you on August 16!
Wednesday, August 16, from 5:00 to 8:30 p.m.
At the Wayzata Depot
Tickets Now Available on Eventbrite!
Submitted by the Wayzata Historical Society.

SHERIFF: Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs

Hennepin County Sheriff's Hooked on Fishing not on Drugs event. Submitted photo.
Hennepin County Sheriff’s Hooked on Fishing not on Drugs event. Submitted photo.

Earlier this week, two dozen area youth from the Boys & Girls Club of the Twin Cities participated in the Sheriff’s Office annual Hooked on Fishing, Not on Drugs event. The event pairs teen-aged youth with deputies, volunteer Special Deputies and youth Explorers for a morning of fishing, drug prevention education and lots of fun.

The goal of the event is to teach kids about the dangers of drugs while also providing them with a fun activity they can do with friends. It is one of several educational events the Sheriff’s Office has hosted as part of the #NOverdose drug prevention campaign.

The event is made possible by generous donations from the Hennepin County Sheriff Foundation and other area businesses that donate pontoon boats, equipment and lunch.

Mediacom outage WAS widespread in upper midwest

UDPATE: Service was restored in Wayzata mid to late afternoon on Wednesday July 12.

Mediacom’s outage has been rumored to be widespread in multiple states.

KNIA Radio in Knoxville IA is reporting that a fiber line was cut:

Featured image courtesy:



ISD#284: School Board Approves Three Referendum Questions for November 7, 2017 Election


July 11, 2017

School Board Approves Three Referendum Questions for

November 7, 2017 Election

After months of reviewing enrollment and budget data, working with community-based enrollment growth and finance advisory groups and assessing how best to maintain the Wayzata Public Schools commitment to academic excellence, the Wayzata School Board has approved placing three school funding requests on a November 7, 2017 ballot:

  • Question 1: Operating Levy – Renew and Increase

This funding would stabilize the district budget, maintain class sizes, manage growing enrollment and provide students with needed support services.

  • Question 2: Bond Funding

This funding would address the district’s growth and facilities needs, including building a new elementary school and addressing additional capacity, safety and academic needs.

  • Question 3: Technology Levy – Renew

Continuing this existing funding would help maintain technology for students and staff to provide a personalized education and access to real-time educational resources.

“We work hard to be financially prudent on behalf of our students and our community,” said Wayzata School Board Chair Chris McCullough. “These funding requests are in response to our growing enrollment and based on the advice of our Citizen’s Finance Advisory Council and a community-based Growth Task Force. Our goal is to maintain the academic excellence our community expects and our students deserve, while always being mindful of and sensitive to the concerns of our taxpayers.”

Ad: houses for sale wayzata school district

If all three requests are approved by voters in November, the tax impact on an average homeowner ($350,000 home) would be less than $15 per month.

Prior to making the decision to place the funding requests on the ballot, the School Board reviewed the following information presented by Superintendent Chace Anderson:

Budget Pressures

  • Inadequate state funding is putting increased pressure on the district’s operating budget, which funds teachers, classrooms and other district operating costs. State funding has not kept up with inflation nor increasing costs – forcing the district to cut more than $16 million from its operating budget over the past eight years.
  • Wayzata’s operating levy is lower than most neighboring districts and nearly $500 less per student than the amount allowed by state law.
  • The last time the district asked residents to increase the operating levy was more than a decade ago.
  • Without an increase in the operating levy, WPS will face annual budget cuts of $1 million.

Growth and Facilities Needs

  • If current housing trends continue, WPS can expect approximately another 1,000 new students

K-12 by 2019.

  • New housing developments are going up 2-3 times more rapidly than developers had projected in the north, and there is stable growth in the southern part of the district as older homes turnover to young families.
  • Without a new elementary school, all elementaries would become crowded and all elementary class sizes would increase.
  • While there are elementary level capacity issues, there should be adequate space at the middle schools and high school for several years due to the recent expansion of Wayzata High School and moving early childhood programs out of Central Middle School to make space for middle school students.
  • Additional facilities needs include traffic safety issues at some schools, cafeteria space concerns at Central Middle School, outdated elementary media centers and performing arts space improvements needed at East and West Middle Schools.

Technology for Teaching and Learning

  • A district technology levy will soon expire, which provides $4 million per year to support personalized education and access to real-time educational resources for students.
  • Renewing this levy will have no tax impact.

The school district will begin preparing informational materials for residents about the funding requests, including a website, video and print materials to help residents make an informed vote. These materials should be ready by the start of the school year.

# # #

NEW LISTING: 2985 Lawndale Lane North – Wayzata Schools

Step through the front door to your new home! Soaring ceilings, architectural staircase, and large living spaces greet you! Enjoy spacious living, home office, granite countertops, stainless steel appliances, and more! Head upstairs to four bedrooms on one level including a huge master ensuite, dual sinks, jetted tub, shower and more.

Entertain in the basement and host guests in the 5th bedroom. All of this in the award winning Wayzata School District! Oakwood Elementary, Central Middle Schools. Call Dan Gustafson of Coldwell Banker Burnet at (952) 473-1000 for more info or to book a showing.

2985 Lawndale Lane N Plymouth MN 55447


Licensed in MN, Equal Housing.

Wayzata Historical Society program: Wood Budnick – Wayzata’s Music Man

An email from the Wayzata Historical Society:

“Join us Thursday, July 13 on the depot lawn for a tribute to Woody Budnick, Wayzata’s celebrated “Music Man” and longtime band leader at Wayzata Public Schools. We are delighted to highlight the life story of this prominent Wayzatan!

A brass quintet will play some tunes before former students and friends highlight Woody’s life from 1916 to 1998. Stories will be shared and picture displays will be presented. The program will end with a sing-along of the Wayzata High School rouser, followed by social hour.

We have asked the Fire Department to provide us with over 40 chairs, but please bring your own if you can as we do expect a crowd. If there is rain, we will hold the program inside the depot. We look forward to seeing you there!”

7:00 p.m. Thursday, July 13
At the Wayzata Depot

Community Job Fair scheduled for July 12, 2017

Are you looking for part-time flexible or full-time work with benefits in the Wayzata MN and Plymouth areas?

Wayzata Public Schools and the Wayzata Chamber of Commerce are partnering with area employers to host a community job fair.

  • Light refreshments will be provided
  • On-site interviews may be conducted

Wednesday, July 12
2:00-6:00 p.m.
Wayzata High School
4955 Peony Lane, Plymouth MN 55446

  • ACR Homes: Direct Care Professionals, Residential Supervisors, Nurses, HR, Recruiting
  • Bellecour: Baristas, Hosts, Dishwashers
  • Benedict’s Restaurant: Servers, bartenders, cooks, dishwashers, bussers
  • BMO Harris Bank: Retail Bankers and Tellers
  • Brownsworth: FT/PT Office Furniture Installers
  • College Nannies and Tutors: After-School Nannies, Full-Time Nannies, Sitters, Part-Time Tutors
  • First Student Bus Company: Bus Drivers
  • Hammer Residences: FT/PT Direct Support Professionals
  • Mediacom: Broadband Installer Specialists, Direct Sales Reps, Commercial Account Reps (B2B Sales)
  • Meridian Manor: Nurses, Home Health Aids, Concierge, Servers
  • MN Reading Corp: FT/PT Literacy Tutors
  • Mount Olivet Rolling Acres: Direct Support Professionals
  • Nothing Bundt Cakes: Dishwashers, Frosters, Baking Assistants, Guest Services
  • St. David’s Center for Child and Family Development: Direct Support Professionals, Paraprofessionals, Mental Health Practitioners
  • Walgreens: Cashiers, Leadership Positions, Pharmacy
  • Wayzata Public Schools: Culinary Express, Custodians, School-aged Before and After-School Childcare, Special Education Paraprofessionals, Paraprofessional Subs and Technology Paraprofessionals (IT Support)

For more info please visit:

Ryan Johnson Named 2017 National High School Strength & Conditioning Coach of the Year

Ryan Johnson Trojan Power

Ryan Johnson WHS Strength and Conditioning Coordinator. Submitted photo.
Ryan Johnson WHS Strength and Conditioning Coordinator. Submitted photo.

Wayzata, MN: Congratulations to Ryan Johnson for being named the 2017 High School Strength and Conditioning Coach by the National Strength and Conditioning Association. Ryan becomes the 26th recipient of the award, which has been handed out since 1991. Award winners are selected by a volunteer committee, the NSCA’s Coaching Task Force, who determine the winner based on their contributions to the NSCA, their community and the strength and conditioning profession.

Ryan teaches physical education at Wayzata High School and is the strength and conditioning coordinator for Wayzata Public Schools, a position he began in 2000. Wayzata athletics have captured 54 team state titles in his tenure and Ryan works directly with the three-time state champion football program as director of operations and player development. He is a member of the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) and is the Minnesota NSCA State Director. In 2010, he was named the NSCA Minnesota High School Strength and Conditioning Professional of the Year. In 2013, he was named the NSCA State Director of the Year.

A former volunteer firefighter, he also received an Award of Merit from the Minnesota Department of Health and Safety for participation in a lifesaving CPR/AED effort to revive a player that suffered sudden cardiac arrest while at practice. Ryan is a frequent clinician, speaker and his Wayzata Trojan Power program has been visited by over 50 other high school and small college programs. He also volunteered his time in the Rockford School District where he and his wife and four children reside by serving as the Rockford Area Athletic Association President and Youth Football Director.

Congratulations to Coach Johnson for this well-deserved award,” said Scott Caulfield, NSCA Head Strength and Conditioning Coach. “He has changed many lives and exemplifies what it is to be an NSCA professional. We are proud to have him as a member.”

Ryan will receive his award at the 40th Annual NSCA National Conference, which will be held in Las Vegas, NV from July 12-15.

MPLS St Paul Magazine: “Was Wayzata too ambitious in its retail expansion strategy?”

As things were wrapping up at the July 5th Wayzata City Council meeting, Mayor Ken Willcox stated, “The current edition of Minneapolis St. Paul Magazine has an article on Wayzata, and it has to do mostly with retail, and slowness, and we’re seasonal, and what’s going to happen.

Council member Johanna McCarthy indicated she had read the article and remarked in response, “It’s very similar to, very reminiscent of many of the conversations at the Planning Commission and also here in Council Chambers when we meet. I thought maybe someone was going back through our old meetings.”

Willcox stated, “It’s Deja Vu all over again.”

The article is titled: If You Build It, Will They Come? New restaurants, a new hotel . . . and a lot of vacant retail space. Taking stock of Wayzata.” Written by popular blogger, radio host, and shopping guru Ali Kaplan, she highlights the challenges that Wayzata faces having built an incredible amount of retail space and the fact that the uber wealthy “apparently don’t even buy enough sandwiches to keep the lights on at  Lunds & Byerlys Kitchen…”

Radio host, blogger, and shopper Ali Kaplan. Image courtesy LinkedIn.
Radio host, blogger, and shopper Ali Kaplan. Image courtesy LinkedIn.


Kaplan’s keen insight into the situation is highlighted in two sentences, “As I walk past the Promenade’s empty storefronts, many of which are hidden within the development and not even visible from the street, I find myself wondering how any developer could get this far without being sure the demand would really be there.”

Screenshot of article about Wayzata in Mpls St Paul Magazine.

There are a number of other insightful observations by Kaplan, including the Wayzata tax base being both blessing and curse, the desire by most retailers to be able to draw consumers from 360 degrees–which the lake prevents. She also notes recent renovations and expansion at Ridgedale have complicated the situation as well.

Kaplan quotes Mayor Willcox, Promenade leasing agent Jesseka Doherty of Mid-America Real Estate, and Terri Huml owner of Gianni’s Steakhouse as she makes these observations.

Kaplan also mentions the two elephants in the room: Winter & Amazon. (See a recent article on Amazon’s acquisition of Whole Foods and the impact it is having on local retail in places like Wayzata.)

While a number of residents and stakeholders up until this point have wondered quietly when (or if) the spaces in the Promenade could be filled, the timely article poses the question publicly and in a well read major media outlet.

If you have an opinion on the subject, or have a suggestion as to how to help with the situation, please comment in the areas below or visit the Facebook page and leave your comments there.

Mpls.St.Paul Magazine writer Ali Kaplan asks, "Was Wayzata too ambitious in its Retail Expansion Strategy?" What are…

Posted by on Thursday, July 6, 2017

Comments from Facebook users:

Diane Hansen OlivieriIt was once so wonderful. Once so quaint. Once a small town. Bridgemans, Foresome…A and W.

Rebecca Borgert Green: Don’t get me started. Ali hit it right on the money.

Betty Quastyes, they have way over spent. It is not the same cute little town it use to be.

John FrickstadOver built….yeah.

Linda RoalIt is a good article but I think it’s aim is wrong. The aim is wrong. I’ve been almost a lifetime resident of Wayzata. The City council intentionally allowed Huge expansion of restaurants, etc w/ extremely inadequate parking compared to national urban-planning norms. Our local-long time shops & restaurants could not afford t/triple lease raises w/in the last few years.
I’m normally Not axpessimist but my informed personal opinion was that this was simply driven by a City council who only focused on increased tax revenue. Wayzata has sold out its morals & anything resembling its history of a charming, elegant town. Of course people like Excelsior more. Who wants to have to walk/ or be shuttled a long way just to visit. In my view the City council only saw “visitor’s” money at the price of those who are near-by residents & not -surprisingly t/tourists aren’t coming. Be sure you vote your heart, what ever it is in local elections.

Elizabeth Muffy Babcock Lokowich: Yes- 💯 too much. How many vacancies does the promenade area have..? When I drove through on the 4th, the interior storefronts were 100% vacant… city planning?

Jan Vickery Lillemo: It doesn’t have the same cozy feel it always had. It’s hard to find parking, and is way too built up. Very sad.

Wendy Briggs: It used to be quaint and unpretentious. No small task for a tiny town on a lake with a lot of wealth. I don’t recognize it any more when I visit. The quaintnesa has been replaced with gauche, ultra modern condos and tony little businesses. The cafe, the theater, A&W. Walking across the tracks and sitting on the rocks just to watch the lake. Time marches on everywhere, but I don’t have to like it.

Gregg Johnson: They have created a large eye soar on the lake!

Carol Severin Johnson: Too bad-I was looking forward to checking out the old town on summer vacation, Life marches on

Harriet Peterson: It is sad to see what the leaders of the city of Wayzata have done. It seems to be ” all about money”. It was such a treasure for years but now is just another one of “those shopping places” I will avoid it all. !

Jimmy Leuer: Wayzata has changed to a crazy large town in a nice small town. City council did a terrible job developing a once beautiful small town into a city to big for its borders. Very disappointing the way it turned out for someone that has lived in wayzata for 54 years.

Dave Boies: The character of the town has been changed in a negative way. The friendly little shops and restaurants have been replaced. Wayzata has lost that small town feel as its grown. Having worked in Wayzata for many years, now that I don’t work there, I don’t go there but once or twice per year and I still live within 10 miles of town.

Andrew Cullen: The article is ok. It touches on some truths. Wayzata priced their own residents out, meaning “most” people even if they can ( financially), won’t take a leap into the retail world b/c of the cost. Wayzata positioned themselves to make it less accessible for “mom and pop” shops, but available only to National chains or more of a corporate style store like Anthro. The old pizza joints and family owned clothing stores are no more for the most part.

Wayne Grover: It’s not the place I grew up in anymore. Sad.

ISD#284 School Board Regular Meeting for Monday, July 10, 2017

Independent School District 284
Wayzata, Minnesota

Regular Meeting – July 10, 2017 – 7:00 PM
Wayzata City Hall, 600 Rice Street, Wayzata


  2. APPROVAL OF AGENDA AND CONSENT AGENDA ITEMS Consent Agenda items are considered to be routine in nature and will be enacted by one motion. There will be no separate discussion of these items unless a Board member or citizen so requests, in which event the item will be removed as a Consent Agenda item and addressed. Consent Agenda items are as follows:
    A. Approval of Minutes
    B. Finance and Business Recommendations
    1. Monthly Reports
    C. Human Resource Recommendations
    1. Monthly Recommendations
    D. Change October Work Session Time
    E. Wayzata City Hall Cable Studio & Community Room Use Agreements
    A. Retirees
    B. NSCA National High School Strength and Conditioning Coach of the Year – Ryan Johnson
    C. WHS Boys Golf Team State Championship
    A. Superintendent
    B. Teaching and Learning
    C. Finance and Business Services
    1. Monthly Financial Reports
    2. Resolution to Approve Referendum Recommendations
    3. Resolution for the Wayzata School Board Election
    D. Human Resource Services
  9. AUDIENCE OPPORTUNITY TO ADDRESS SCHOOL BOARD This section of the agenda provides an opportunity for those who have called and placed their names on the list and for members of the audience to address the School Board.

MCWD: Fifty years ago a new era of water protection began 📷

This is the fourth in a series of columns about the history of the Minnehaha Creek watershed.

Creation of MCWD MN Historical Society 1966

In the 1950’s, Minnesota’s urban landscape was changing quickly. Population was booming and cities were racing to develop land and expand their tax bases, frequently draining wetlands to reclaim build-able area.

This draining of wetlands, combined with more hard surfaces (roads, parking lots, roofs) where open space used to be, caused rain water that used to soak into the ground to run off the landscape. As a result, downstream communities faced new, and serious, flooding issues. Responding to these problems was complicated because most cities’ boundaries were drawn without regard to where water flows, and they managed water independently of each other despite their shared hydrological link.

These issues, in addition to court battles over stream rights and drainage problems in the Red River Valley and other water-related concerns, led to the passage of the Minnesota Watershed Act by the Minnesota Legislature in 1955. This novel idea established a special-purpose unit of local government to manage water within a watershed’s hydrological boundary. Citizens could petition for the establishment of a watershed district to manage water on a watershed-wide scale.

In the mid-1960’s, communities along the flood-prone Minnehaha Creek were feeling the effects of landscape change. Following devastating flooding in the spring of 1966 they petitioned the Minnesota Board of Water and Soil Resources to form the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District (MCWD), which is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. The first order of business for the newly-formed organization was managing how Lake Minnetonka drained into Minnehaha Creek. There had been some kind of fixed structure restricting the flow of water from the lake to the creek since the mid-1800s, but none allowed for managing the discharge. Water levels fluctuated at the mercy of Mother Nature, to the chagrin of people who lived along the lake and creek.

Creating an adjustable dam at the Gray’s Bay outlet to Minnehaha Creek, and a plan to guide its operation, was a complicated task. It took nearly ten years to develop an operating plan that was acceptable to the many communities and organizations that were involved in the process. A new adjustable dam was constructed in 1979. It was updated in 2006 to include a viewing/fishing deck and to connect it to a trail being built by the City of Minnetonka. The shoreline was restored and signage was installed.

Throughout the years, the Gray’s Bay Dam has been an effective tool in preventing flooding. Authorized by a permit from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources, the MCWD’s management of the dam is guided by several factors in the operating plan – current water levels on the lake and creek, recent and projected rainfall, time of year and if the lake is on track to be low enough before ice-in to prevent flooding in the spring. The MCWD is also using the latest technology to maximize the dam’s effectiveness. Partnerships with the National Weather Service, U.S. Geological Survey and Hennepin County Emergency Management have enhanced our ability to anticipate the impact of weather events so we can be proactive in managing water levels.