Minnesota's Special Olympics start in Stillwater Thursday

The event is settling into a new home in Stillwater after more than a decade at the U of M. 5,000 people are expected at the games, including 1,300 athletes.
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The event is settling into a new home in Stillwater after more than a decade at the U of M. 5,000 people are expected at the games, including 1,300 athletes.

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Minnesota Zephyr rolls out of Stillwater

Crews are in the process of moving the landmark locomotive from the old Stillwater Depot to the Bayport area. The vintage dinner train stopped running in 2008 after operating for more than two decades. Zephyr owner David Paradeau sold the 5.9-mile railroad corridor to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources for $4.25 million last year. The area will become the Brown's Creek State Trail and will connect to the Gateway State Trail west of Stillwater.

St. Croix River bridge supporters celebrate long-awaited legislation

U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar and U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann were among those in Stillwater at the Saturday morning event. After decades of debate, lawmakers voted Thursday to exempt the proposed St. Croix River crossing from the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act. President Obama is expected to support it. The new four-lane bridge will replace the 80-year-old Stillwater Lift Bridge.

Three-month shutdown of Stillwater bridge is glimpse of future

The Stillwater lift bridge is shutting down Monday for three months of repairs. Many in the city find it a relief to be freed from the traffic congestion of Wisconsin commuters. Some consider it a preview of what life will be like once a new St. Croix River bridge opens in Oak Park Heights in another four or five years.

More time needed in Stillwater Lumberjack Days investigation

Washington County Attorney Pete Orput told the Pioneer Press his office is still reviewing evidence in the case involving former Stillwater Lumberjack Days organizer Dave Eckberg. The newspaper writes it could take another month before a charging decision is made. Last month, Eckberg and his wife filed for personal bankruptcy. Court documents show the couple owes a list of more than 100 creditors nearly $2.4 million.

Former festival organizer in Stillwater faces 10 felony counts for check scheme

After months of investigation, David Eckberg, 61, was charged with 10 felony counts -- five of theft by check and five of issuance of a dishonored check -- in Washington County District Court on Thursday, the Star Tribune reports. Eckberg, the former organizer of Stillwater's now defunct Lumberjack Days festival, is accused taking $41,000 from the festival and writing nearly $55,000 in bad checks.

Stillwater considers axing Lumberjack Days festival

City Administrator Larry Hansen was the first to propose ending the summer festival because of the financial and legal problems now associated with it. Hansen told the Star Tribune he would be surprised if the City Council didn't cancel the contract. Members are expected to discuss it Tuesday.