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Wells Council makes plans for next Kernel Days

By Chuck Hunt - Editor | Jul 18, 2021

With Kernel Days just around the corner in August, the Wells City Council spent some time at their meeting this past Monday night, July 12, authorizing some requests concerning the Wells summer festival.

The Wells Chamber of Commerce and Wells Jaycees requested permission to block off Seventh Avenue SW, between Half Moon Road and First Street SW, between Aug. 20-22.

They also requested a noise variance for the weekend of Kernel Days on both Aug. 20 and Aug. 21 until 2 a.m.

Another request was permission to shoot off fireworks from the compost site on Aug. 20, and to have the Kernel Days Parade on Aug. 21, at 5 p.m., and follow the same route as in 2018 and 2019.

The council approved all the requests.

Another request for approval to apply for a gambling permit for bingo in the Lions Tent was not approved, as the council decided the group simply has to apply for the permit, and do not need to have permission to do so.

The council also approved a two-day temporary beer license to the Wells Jaycees for a beer garden at the Half Moon Park during Kernel Days.

One other item for Kernel Days involved a request from CCF Bank to close the street by the bank to make room for bouncy houses and buggy rides that will be part of their Kernel Days Kickoff Lunch.

It was approved by the council as well. They also approved a request from the bank for the installation of a handicap parking space in front of the bank which would be full van accessible. The new spot would mean the number of parking spaces there would drop from six to four.

In other business at Monday night’s meeting, the council:

• Learned from city engineer Ben Rosol that there had been a pre-construction meeting for the street project. Plans are for prep work to be done the last week of July and construction to begin the first week of August, weather permitting.

“They will start on Third Avenue first, then North Broadway,” Rosel said. “They plan to do just Phase 1 this year, then move on to Phase 2 next spring.”

• Heard a report from Jayne Overstreet of Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation concerning the impact SMIF has had on Wells and Faribault County.

“You have been a partner with us since 1995,” Overstreet said. “And we appreciate your support.”

SMIF has been involved with childcare projects, donating 600 childrens books to Wells and has been helping Our Town USA Foundation with matching grants of $13,000.

• Wished city administrator CJ Holl well as he leaves the city of Wells later this week, and thanked him for all his efforts for the city of Wells.

The council also voted to give police chief Tim Brenegan and city hall staff members Tiffany Schrader and Jenn Lindholm each $5 per hour temporary pay increases for the time until a new city administrator is hired. The three will step into a shared set of duties to fill in for not having an administrator in place.

Holl mentioned this arrangement was the same as was done before he was hired.

He also thanked the council, staff and the community for all their support.

• Approved the hiring of several persons to work at the Flame Theatre, including Merideth Klingbeil, Aslynn Schlosser, Lexus Kaupa, Amber Hassing and Collin VanCleave.

Holl also reported that the Flame Theatre is open and doing well, however, the new film Black Widow, which was to be shown last week, had to be delayed due to complications with the agreement with the movie studio.

• Accepted three donations. Two were from the Wells United Fund – one for $500 to the Flame Theatre and one for $1,000 to Parks and Rec. The other was from the Clothes Closet for $300 to the fire department.

• Heard an update from State Senator Gene Dornink, who was at the meeting to discuss recent legislation which could have an impact on area small towns, including Wells.

• Went into closed session at the end of the meeting to continue to discuss complaints filed against three city employees. No action was taken on the matter after the closed session.