POSTED Friday, January 27

As a writer, I must read. And in most profiles is a mention to the person’s work ethic. It’s the most common thread. It’s no mistake that they are newsworthy. They work at it. Whatever “it” is.

The Kokesh and Kraemer families behind Long Lake True Value are no different. For four generations, they have worked at the family business of owning and operating a general or hardware store. It’s in their blood, says a member the up-and-coming fifth generation.

POSTED Monday, January 23

Did you get a chance to read the feature on the El Amor de Patricia orphanage in Guatemala? It’s run by local business owner Tamara Hillstrom (of the Enchanted Tree House in Wayzata), and she and a few others were featured in the story in our December 2011 issue.

POSTED Thursday, January 19

What do 80s American rocker John Cafferty, Canadian soft rocker Bryan Adams, Swedish heavy metal band Hammerfall, Australian electronic band Cut Copy and ResourceWest have in common? 

No idea?

Hint: it has nothing to do with geography.

Still don’t have it?

Hint: it’s not music genre.

Ok, I'll give you this one.

POSTED Thursday, January 12

A warm winter isn’t always a blessing. Fans of the upcoming Hockey Day Minnesota will be saddened to know that due to our above-freezing temperatures, officials behind the event determined the ice will not be ready by Jan. 21. As a result, the three high school hockey games have been relocated to the Pagel Center at Minnetonka High School.

For more information on Hockey Blast 2012 and Hockey Day Minnesota, visit the official website at

POSTED Monday, January 9

For many writers, seeing their byline attached to the phrase “The New York Times” is a bucket-list dream. However, two Minnetonka High School students are getting that chance.

MHS seniors Abigail Hansen and Rachel Yang were recently chosen to blog for The New York Times online series The Choice, demystifying the college admissions and aid process. Both girls, along with six other high school seniors from across the country, are chronicling the process for the world to see, taking us through the ups and downs of one of the biggest decisions they’ll make in their lives.

POSTED Tuesday, January 3

Did I get a chance to say Happy New Year yet? No? Well then: Happy New Year! I hope you rang in 2012 in a wonderfully festive (but safe) way. We celebrated with lobsters and watching the ball drop on TV. It was delightful.

POSTED Tuesday, December 27

The beauty of freelance writing is that you learn all the time. Every story brings new knowledge.

The January feature for Lake Minnetonka Magazine on West Metro Miracle Athletics was something I was interested in, but knew nothing about. As I sports fan, I knew about former Twin Harmon Killebrew’s philanthropy to the West Metro Miracle League and how they give kids with special needs the opportunity to play ball.

POSTED Tuesday, December 27

Bid farewell to Excelsior clothier Cynthia Rae as it shutters the doors of its Excelsior shop January 5. Stop by today to enjoy a closing sale of 50–70 percent off everything in the store, including clothes, jewelry, shoes, boots, mannequins, wigs, furniture and fixtures.

Loyal shoppers can still visit Cynthia Rae in Uptown at 2817 Hennepin Ave. in Minneapolis.

POSTED Tuesday, December 13

You don’t need to be the next Larry Bird to compete in TreeHouse’s second annual Hoopin It Up For Hope free throw tournament series. Even if your shot isn’t on target, the cause is.

TreeHouse, an Edina-based non-profit organization aiming to support and transform at-risk teens, is using this event as an opportunity for people to raise money and awareness for teenagers who are facing difficult times, including issues such as depression, bullying, sexual promiscuity, substance abuse and anger.

POSTED Monday, December 5

Now through December 19, ResourceWest is accepting donations of new, unwrapped toys for its annual toy drive. Toys will be given to children who qualify for the free and reduced school lunch program in the Minnetonka and Hopkins school districts.

The average price of a donated toy is $10–25. Cash donations are also welcome. For a complete list of drop-off sites and recommended donations, go to > Services > Toy Chest.