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Weekend planner: Family nature outing Sunday

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THURSDAY, MAY 28

HEATHER'S HOUSE BENEFIT -- For those who wish to donate to Heather's House -- a foundation created to raise funds to buy and operate a home in the southeast metro for developmentally challenged young women -- Applebee's is sponsoring a Dining-To-Donate day on Thursday, May 28, at 8380 East Point Douglas Drive, in Cottage Grove.

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When you buy a meal, the restaurant will donate 20 percent of the bill to Heather's House. To participate, you must submit a coupon, which can be downloaded at heathershouse@q.com. For details, call (651) 497-5261.

FRIDAY, MAY 29

GARAGE SALE FOR YOUTH, 3-DAY TEAM -- Amy Schall is hosting a garage sale at Newport Lutheran Church, 900 15th St., to help support a summer youth trip and her Breast Cancer 3-Day team. The sale is scheduled from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Friday, May 29, and from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, May 30. The bag sale starts at 11 a.m. on Saturday. For details, call Schall at (651) 769-8982 or e-mail amyschall@yahoo.ie.

TRAVELING SOCCER BRAT FEST -- Members of the 17C1 boys traveling soccer team will be selling grilled brats, hamburgers and hotdogs from 4 to 7 p.m. on Friday, May 29, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 30 and from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Sunday, May 31, at the Von Hanson's Meats parking lot, 9040 Inwood Ave., in Cottage Grove. All proceeds will help support team activities.

SATURDAY, MAY 30

JOHN FORT BOOK SIGNING -- Former District 833 biology teacher John Fort will be glad to sign a copy of his recent horror novel for you at a book signing event, on Saturday, May 30, at the Park Grove Branch Library, 7900 Hemingway Ave., in Cottage Grove. Fort will give a brief motivational presentation, "Ready to Write a Novel--Let's Get Started," at 3:30 p.m. and sign books afterwards. The book, "Fur Bearer," is a novel about werewolves on the rampage, according to Fort. It will sell for $14.95 at the book signing. For details, e-mail him at JLFort@aol.com.

CAMPFIRE PROGRAMS -- On Saturday, May 30, a Dodge Nature Center naturalist will present a free campfire program on "Chickens: From egg to adult," at 7:15 p.m. at Lake Elmo Park Reserve, in Lake Elmo. Visitors will see and hold a variety of the center's chickens. Lake Elmo Park Reserve is located at the intersection of County Roads 19 and 10 (one mile north of Interstate 94) in Lake Elmo. The program will be held in the campground amphitheater. Parking is $5. For details, call (651) 430-8370 or visit www.co.washington.mn.us.

At the same time and day, a naturalist from Como Zoo will present "Bump in the Night," at St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park, in Denmark Township. The free program is all about the world of nocturnal creatures, according to a press release.

St. Croix Bluffs Regional Park is located along the St. Croix River on County Road 21, between County Roads 76 and 78, in Denmark Township. The program will be held in the campground amphitheater. Parking is $5 per vehicle. For details, call (651) 430-8240 or visit www.co.washington.mn.us.

SUNDAY, MAY 31

BOY SCOUT SPAGHETTI DINNER -- Newport Boy Scouts are hosting their annual spaghetti dinner and bake sale from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, May 30, at Newport Fire Hall No. 1, 155 20th Street. Tickets are $5 at the door for spaghetti, bread and a beverage.

FAMILY NATURE OUTING -- Happy Trails, a free metro area family nature club, is having a "Day of Play" at Newport's Loveland Park, 1500 Glen Road, from 1 to 3 p.m., on Sunday, May 31. Families are invited to play old-fashioned games like Kick the Can, Red Light-Green Light and Frisbee and explore the park trails. All are welcome. For details, go to www.HappyTrailsClub.net.

MASTER GARDENERS SALE, CLINIC -- Home gardeners can buy plants and have their yard and garden questions answered for free at a plant sale and diagnostic clinic hosted by University of Minnesota Extension Master Gardeners on Sunday, May 31, at the 4-H Building at the Washington County Fairgrounds, located at Highway 5 and Manning Ave., in Lake Elmo. The diagnostic clinic will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. and the plant sale from noon to 3 p.m. A special bonsai demonstration will be held at 11:30 a.m.

MONDAY, JUNE 1

COMMUNITY THEATRE AUDITIONS --

The Woodbury Community Theatre will hold auditions for "The Best of Gilbert & Sullivan." including the comic opera "Trial by Jury," from 6:30 to 9 p.m. on Monday and Tuesday, June 1 and 2, at Woodbury United Methodist Church, 7465 Steepleview Road.

Directors are looking for 15 to 20 adult men and the same number of adult women. Patrick Healy, a renowned Gilbert and Sullvian specialist will arrive from London the last week of rehearsals to conduct a workshop with the cast and crew on Gilbert and Sullivan.

If you go, be prepared to sing an up-tempo song and bring your own sheet music for the pianist, according to a press release.

Performances are scheduled Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 12 and 13, at East Ridge High School, in Woodbury. For details, go to www.woodburycommunitytheatre.org.

TUESDAY, JUNE 2

YMCA OPEN HOUSE AT NEW CAMP SITE -- The Southeast Area YMCA is hosting an open house at Lake Elmo Park Reserve, 1515 Keats Ave. N., in Lake Elmo -- the new site of its Camp Kumalya summer program. Everyone is invited from 5 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 2, for a walk-through of the camp and to meet camp counselors. Registrations are also being accepted for the YMCA's Summer Power Preschool (2 to 5 years old) and Summer Uproar (grades 5 to 9). For details, call (651) 731-9507 or visit the YMCA Web site at www.ymcatwincities.org.

FAMILY POND EXPLORING -- Families are invited to dip for pond bugs from 6 to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, June 2, at Cottage Grove Ravine Regional Park. The program is free and co-sponsored by the Wasington County Parks Department, Sierra Club and the East Metro Water Resource Education Program. Reservations are required. For details, call outing leader Angie Hong at (952) 261-9599 or e-mail algoodri@hotmail.com. If you go, meet at the fishing dock, bring bug spray and wear outdoor clothes. Hong says families may also want to bring towels and a change of shoes for youth. Activities will include hunting for frogs, looking for tracks in the mud and dipping for water bugs. Hong will supply plastic containers and ID sheets. Similar programs are planned the first Tuesday of the month, May through October. Visit www.mn.sierraclub.org/outings for the most up-to-date trip information.

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