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Cottage Grove Public Works Department opens doors, showcases rigs

More than 1,000 area residents made it out to the Cottage Grove Public Works Department’s open house last week, which featured rides on the cherry picker, free food and children’s activities. (Bulletin photo by Emily Buss)1 / 6
Cottage Grove Public Works Department employee Jim Fohrman manned the grill, along with employee Joe Rhode and Adam Mosier, during the department's open house last week. (Bulletin photo by Emily Buss)2 / 6
Area residents rose high into the sky aboard a Cottage Grove Public Works Department elevated work platform, also known as a cherry picker, during the department’s open house last week. (Bulletin photo by Emily Buss)3 / 6
Ava Cheney, 7, of Cottage Grove, jumped at the chance to test out a utility mower during the open house last week. (Bulletin photo by Emily Buss)4 / 6
More than 1,000 area residents made it out to the Cottage Grove Public Works Department’s open house last week, which featured rides on the cherry picker, free food and children’s activities. (Bulletin photo by Emily Buss)5 / 6
Emily Renlund, 7, of Cottage Grove, jumped high up into the seat of a Cottage Grove snowplow during the Public Works Department's open house last week. (Bulletin photo by Emily Buss)6 / 6

An early afternoon rainstorm didn’t stop activities at the Cottage Grove Public Works Department from taking place as more than 1,000 people from around the area took advantage of the opportunity to get up close and personal with some of the city’s largest vehicles

Event goers were also treated to hot dogs, flavored slushies, bounce houses and a hayride, as well as educational opportunities at booths manned by the Cottage Grove Parks and Recreation Department, bike park representatives, forestry experts, among others.

The department had on display snow plows, trash haulers, oversized lawnmowers, even a cherry picker and gave kids nearly free reign.

Eight-year-old Hunter Giefer, of Hastings, climbed aboard a miniature digger and maneuvered sand and plastic balls into the end of a small dump truck.

“My dad does this work,” he said. “It’s cool to learn how to work the diggers.”

Public Works Director Les Burshten worked the grill alongside department employees Joe Rhode, Jim Fohrman and Adam Mosier, and said the event is an opportunity for the public to see what the department does for the city.

“We open our doors so that the residents can see where their tax dollars are going and step inside the vehicles we use everyday,” department employee Kevin Zittel said. “We have a very visible job keeping the city in order.”

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