Minutes - 10/2008
Wednesday, October 1, 2008 12:10 PM

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District 10 Environment Committee 

Wednesday, October 15, 2008 

Attendees:  Val Cunningham, Sharon Shinomiya, Becky Cline, Deb Robinson, 

Betti Iwanski, Susan Jane Cheney 

Susan Jane Cheney, sitting in for Committee Chair Mike MacDonald, called the 

meeting to order at 7:05 p.m. 

Reports and Updates 

1. Rain barrel workshops: 

The Capitol Region Watershed District paid the $2000 grant money 

directly to Verde Strategies, the contractor, so all accounts are clear. 

2. Native garden clean-up: 

An end-of-season weeding and shrub-planting took place on Saturday, 

10/4.  Val Cunningham reported that about $300 of the $525 2008 

Audubon grant remains to carry over to next year.  She suggested inviting 

Audubon board members for a garden tour in the spring. 

3. Como Woodland Outdoor Classroom (CWOC): 

Susan Jane circulated a copy of the letter that Mike MacDonald sent on 

behalf of the District 10 Board to Mayor Chris Coleman, City Council 

Members Stark and Helgen and Parks Director Bob Bierscheid in support 

of incorporating the CWOC into the Como Park Master Plan.  Deb 

Robinson reported that the next Advisory Group meeting will be in mid- 

November.  She noted that the October 30th meeting (6:30 p.m. at the 

Como Zoo and Conservatory Visitor Center Auditorium) will include a 

discussion of the CWOC as well as the pool and soccer fields. 

4. Buckthorn Bust: 

Deb reported that approximately 160 volunteers participated in this year’s 

bust.  Expenses totaled $362.21; she will contact Susan Solterman at 

Audubon regarding reimbursement from the Together Green grant. 

Discussion of projects and activities for 2009 

1. Rain barrel workshops: 

There was consensus that community interest is sufficient to conduct 

more workshops next spring, perhaps with another Capitol Region 

Watershed District grant.  A suggestion was made to use a closer location. 

2. Residential buckthorn removal project: 

Discussion focused on education of District 10 residents regarding 

buckthorn, hauling resources, and assistance for replacement plants. 

There was agreement that this should probably be a multi-year endeavor, 

beginning with an educational component.  We should review notes from 

District 12’s program.  Betti volunteered to investigate hauling options.  Val 

will contact nurseries regarding replacement plant vouchers. 

3. Lecture series: 

Enthusiasm was expressed for sponsoring talks on various topics of 

interest to the community.  Some programs might be collaborations with

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other groups, such as the Watershed District, Eco Education, or Ramsey 

Conservation District.  Potential topics include: composting; solar ovens; 

rain gardens; Como Park history; home energy evaluations and remedial 

measures; geothermal home heating; insulated concrete form homes; 

wood burning stoves, old fireplaces and particulates; invasive species; 

birding; Como wildlife; turtles; monarch butterfly “ranching;” local authors; 

seminar on sustainable yard designs; neighborhood wildlife corridors; tree 

health and diseases; earthworms. 

4. Home energy savings project: 

Information and resources for energy efficient appliances, weather- 

proofing and other measures would be included. 

Adjournment 

The meeting adjourned at 8:15 p.m. 

[Meeting summary prepared by Susan Jane Cheney] 

District 10 Como Community Council | 1224 Lexington Pkwy N, Saint Paul, MN 55103 | 651.644.3889 | district10 [at] district10comopark.org

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