Minneota students take a quick break from raking leaves from a community member's lawn on Monday. Left to right: Cale Sorensen, Tyler Gronke, Cole Myhre, Tucker Thooft and Abby Frie. Ben Vlaminck of Progressive Lawnscapes volunteered his services Monday to pick up leaves and haul them away.

Rake, rattle and roll!

Juniors, seniors participate in Community Service Day

Students don't just learn in a classroom. Helping others in the community can also be a valuable learning experience.
Approximately 80 Minneota High School juniors and seniors and eight Home Team advisors raked and cleaned lawns on Monday morning for homeowners who needed help.
The students, who were participating in the Community Service Day, tidied up the lawns of around 15 homes in town. The students broke into smaller groups and tackled each project with enthusiasm, while also getting a chance to enjoy the nice day.
"We had our first Community Service Day in the fall of 2019 with the then-sophomore class (current seniors) raking leaves and participating," said Principal Jeremy Frie. "It was our trial run for a bigger school-wide project."
The COVID pandemic derailed those plans last fall. But the Community Service Day has started up again.
"We feel it's important for our students to 'give back' to the community," Frie noted. "Not only do we hope to develop good students, but we also hope to teach them to be good citizens, too."
Minneota Police Chief Bill Bolt made a list of the homeowners in town that could use a helping hand.
"I drove around town and looked for home that had a lot of leaves, and homes that I knew the people living there may have limited physical or financial limitations to deal with the leaves," said Bolt. "I provided a list to the school of approximately 60 addresses and highlighted approximately 15 that would be high priority since I did not know how many they would be able to help."
Chief Bolt was pleased with the efforts of the students and the school for holding Community Service Day.
"I really like this idea and wish we had even more of it," Bolt said. "People helping people is a great way to support a community, give a sense of accomplishment to those providing help along with reminding people that we don't necessarily need to rely upon the government for help."
The students raked the leaves in piles next to the curb where Ben Vlaminck of Progressive Lawnscapes, LLC volunteered his services to pick up the leaves and haul them to the brush site. School personnel were grateful for his assistance.
"The students enjoyed helping out community members," said Frie. "There were a lot of smiles, lots of fun, and some hard work on this beautiful fall day.”

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