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Joint meeting explores ways to improve Harmony


Mon, Feb 23rd, 2015
Posted in Harmony Features

By Jade Sexton

How do we make Harmony a better place to live? How do we bring new people into the community and the schools? The Harmony City Council, Fillmore Central School Board, and Harmony EDA (Economic Development Authority) met in a joint meeting on February 18 to find answers to these questions, as well as discuss common goals.

Fillmore Central Superintendent Richard Keith shared some of what the school has been working on this past year, including facility and technology updates in both Harmony and Preston.

Last year, the main gym floor at the high school was replaced. There has been a complete replacement of the HVAC (heating, ventilating, and air conditioning) system, sprinklers, new doors, and a new electronic sign in front of the school. Last summer new infrastructure was installed for computer access in the entire district. The stage gym has had a lot of work done to it recently, including painted walls and ceiling, enlarging the opening for the sound booth, and getting the curtains cleaned.

According to Keith, this summer they will be remodeling the restrooms at the high school and replacing windows. They will also be replacing the HVAC at the elementary school and renovating some of the classrooms to accommodate growing numbers.

Mayor Steve Donney spoke of some of the things the city has been working on. He mentioned the new well that is currently being drilled, and the recent 1st Avenue project. He mentioned the Harmony Community Foundation, which has done several projects for the school and community, and given grants for the arts department.

Chris Skaalen, EDA President, said he had heard Harmony was one of the first cities in rural Minnesota to fully utilize their TIF districts. The TIF districts have allowed the EDA to do a lot of projects they wouldn’t have been able to do otherwise, such as Heritage Grove.

The Industrial Park has expanded a lot in the last few years. The EDA has established a revolving loan fund for local businesses, as well as commercial rehab loans. There is a new housing incentive program in which residents can qualify for up to $12,000 to construct a new home.

Skaalen said they did a demographic study on Harmony and found it has the lowest per capita income and the oldest population.

“It’s obvious we need to attract more young families to town,” said Skaalen. He added they .....
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Gerri LeRoy Matson

Mon, Feb 23rd, 2015
Posted in Harmony Obituaries

Gerri LeRoy Matson, 68, of Jefferson City, was called home to Heaven Tuesday, February 10, 2015, at University Hospital in Columbia, Mo. surrounded by his loving family. He was born September 16, 1946, in Harlan, Iowa, the son of the late Gordon ..... 
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Lauren Manley Applen

Mon, Feb 23rd, 2015
Posted in Harmony Obituaries

Lauren Manley Applen passed away peacefully on Sunday, February 15, 2015. He was a resident at the Gunderson Harmony Care Center. Mr. “A” was born on April 26, 1926 to W.O. Applen and Laura (Serfling) Applen on the family farm in Granger. He ..... 
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John J. Ryan

Mon, Feb 23rd, 2015
Posted in Harmony Obituaries

John J. Ryan, 79 of Harmony, Minn. passed away on February 14, 2015 at the Harmony Health Care Center in Harmony, Minn. John Ryan was born on March 4, 1935 in Manly, Iowa to William and Sara (Briar) Ryan. He attended Sacred Heart Catholic Schoo ..... 
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Snow removal concerns in Harmony

Mon, Feb 16th, 2015
Posted in Harmony Government

At the February 10 council meeting, Council member Kyle Morem brought up the issue of snow removal in Harmony. He stated it has been the biggest complaint he has heard in town. “What can we do to fix that?” he asked. He and other council me ..... 
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Carmen Kingsbury

Mon, Feb 16th, 2015
Posted in Harmony Obituaries

Carmen Kingsbury, age 83, of Minneapolis and formerly of Harmony, passed away on Sunday, February 8, 2015 at Richfield Health Center in Richfield, Minn. A time of remembrance was held 9:15 a.m. on Thursday, February 12, 2015 at the Lindstrom Funer ..... 
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Fillmore Central Tri-State MS Honor Band

Mon, Feb 9th, 2015
Posted in Harmony Education

Fillmore Central 7th and 8th grade band students were selected for the 2015 Tri-State MS Honor Band in Decorah, Iowa on Saturday, March 7. Left to right: Garrett Aggen (alto), Makenna Gatzke (percussion), Kelsey Biel (tenor), Madison Scheevel (clar ..... 
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Fillmore Central sets goals for 2015

Mon, Feb 2nd, 2015
Posted in Harmony Education

Fillmore Central Superintendent Richard Keith presented the school board with the goals for 2014-15 as recommended by the World’s Best Workforce committee. The state identified five areas to work on; kindergarten readiness, 3rd grade literacy, c ..... 
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Joan Johnson Smith

Mon, Feb 2nd, 2015
Posted in Harmony Obituaries

Joan Johnson Smith, age 79, of Harmony, Minn. passed away Saturday, January 24, 2015, surrounded by her family at Methodist Hospital in Rochester. Funeral services were held 10:30 a.m. Saturday, January 31, 2015 at Greenfield Lutheran Church in Ha ..... 
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