Sunday, December 24, 2017

Merry Christmas

December 24, 2017
In 2017 I had the opportunity to visit Poland. While in Poland I was able to visit Auschwitz, the famous Nazi concentration camp. While this is a powerful and dark reminder for anyone who cares about religious freedom, I think for me it held an even more significant historical importance. My next door neighbor while growing up had not only been to this place, she had the numeric tattoo to prove it. I felt I needed to go see this dark place to try and understand what it must have been like for her. While I had read the stories and understood what happened in this place, I was not prepared for the sheer size and expanse of a facility that was dedicated to evil. While I thought about the images I was seeing and trying to relate the stories I heard from my neighbor I realized just how special the United States is and how lucky we are to have a culture free from religious persecution. I was also struck by the notion of just how important it is to celebrate our chosen religion. I remember how proud she was to wish us a Happy Chanukah and how she always smiled back as we wished her a Merry Christmas. This seasonal exchange of warmth, compassion and love is one of my favorite memories around Christmas. I have always remembered to share this seasonal greeting with those that are important to me, so let me wish all my neighbors and friends a very Merry Christmas, a Happy Chanukah and a safe and prosperous new year.

Merry Christmas,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor - City of Mantorville

Monday, November 27, 2017

Formal Award Letter

Holidays and Celebrations

November 27, 2017

I hope everyone was able to have a nice thanksgiving celebration with his or her family this past week. Thanksgiving marks the start of our traditional holiday season and the season of giving. While many of us are focused on that perfect gift for someone special, we too often forget to consider the needs of our community and those outside our immediate circle. While donating to a charity, or volunteering are obvious ways to help another very important way to help others this holiday season is often overlooked. This time of year the local blood banks are dangerously low on fresh blood and you could literally save a life by donating a unit of blood over the holiday season. This simple gift could literally be the difference between life and death for someone, so please consider adding this special gift to your holiday tradition.

Fifth Street:
During the last City Council meeting the council asked our engineer to look at the options available for adding a pedestrian path to Fifth Street. Our engineer was going to look at a trail on the south side for safety reasons, look at a trail on the north side for cost considerations and any option where the road surface could be shifted. The initial design phase for any significant project is to look at all options, get a scope of work for each and fully understand the various implications of each proposal. Many of my neighbors have expressed their thoughts on this project and we will defiantly take those concerns into consideration when selecting the most appropriate option based on cost, feasibility and safety. I did want to share with you that while we are looking at all options your input and concerns are also an important consideration when making a final project plans. Once we have more detail from our engineer I will post an update on how the project is proceeding and the option that the council feels is most appropriate.

Grant Money:
The City was notified a few months ago of the preliminary allocation of grant money and loan funding options available for the Mantorville Waste Water Treatment Plant project. After the initial notification we were told that an official letter would be sent to the City to confirm those funds and the exact dollar amount. While I really wanted to share the news as soon as we received the unofficial notice, I thought it was more prudent to wait for the formal letter. Two weeks ago we did receive the official letter that notified the City of a grant for our project in the amount of $1.8M with an additional PFA loan amount of $469K at 1% interest. This is very good news for the citizens of Mantorville. I will post the entire letter to my blog.

Kiwanis Club:
There is a new Kiwanis club forming in Kasson Mantorville.  According to the Kiwanis web site ( the focus of the organization is:
“Kiwanis helps kids around the world. Local clubs look out for our communities and the international organization takes on large-scale challenges, such as fighting disease and poverty. We are generous with our time. We are creative with our ideas. We are passionate about making a difference. And we have fun along the way.”
The club is still accepting applications for the charter members of our communities club. Anyone interested in joining this club and helping the younger generation within our community is encouraged to contact Randy Schmidt at

Yours in Service,

Chuck Bradford
Mayor, City of Mantorville

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Our Next Generation

October 17, 17
Student Presentations:
Last week Mayor McKern and myself were invited to serve as judges for student presentations on “How to improve our community”. The presentations covered promotional videos, ideas for new businesses, recreational opportunities and infrastructure needs. I was impressed by how closely the student’s comments echoed the embodied spirit of our two communities. From the student’s presentations it was clear that they saw the value of our close inviting community, our rich heritage and the value of being removed from a major metropolitan area. The presentations focused on how to keep our identity and improve on what we have. One of the presentations featured footage from a drone of the Kasson-Mantorville area and was a solid representation of just how beautiful our two cities are from the air. Another presentation featured an interview with the school superintendent Mark Matuska and was a clear illustration of just how available our superintendent makes himself to our student body. After all the presentations I was very impressed with how confident the students were, how much thought the students put into their presentations and how blessed we are as a community to have the quality of students we have in the Kasson-Mantorville school system.

The Mantorville Theater Companies’ presentation of “Nevermore” is this year’s fall dinner theater. This year as in the past, there were student volunteers that helped with serving duties. The play is really a very special treat, and if you haven’t had the opportunity to enjoy this year’s presentation, I would strongly recommend that you reserve a ticket now. The play examines the life and times of American Author Edger Allen Poe. The score, costumes and theatrical performance are atypical of what you might think of from a small town theater and are really a great surprise. The play is a great get-away for Date Night or even a great family event.  For more information, check out the MTC web site at, on Facebook or buy tickets in person at the Chocolate Shoppe. 

Yours in Service,

Chuck Bradford
Mayor, City of Mantorville

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Quick Update

October 10, 2017
Waste Water Treatment Plant:
Last Friday I received a late text message that the pumps connecting the new line from our existing Waste Water Treatment Plant over to the upgraded plant in Kasson were operating. When looking back at our notes this is a project that we have been working on since 2008. For many of us on the council it was that moment we sighed a collective sigh of relief. The City of Mantorville has been fortunate to have a good staff to keep our plant running combined with some good luck on the mechanical side of the plant. The milestone of actually connecting to Kasson is a significant one, and one that many on the council were anxiously looking forward to.

Just water over the Dam: 
The Dam has had some recent maintenance performed on it and we are looking at additional work that may need to be performed. Many of you have noted that the river level has fluctuated a great deal over the summer and the reason for this was that the city needed to evaluate the Dam’s needs and then preform some of the work.

Yours in Service,

Chuck Bradford
Mayor, City of Mantorville

Monday, September 11, 2017

Pappus named as 10th Mantorville GEM

Gems of Mantorville, 2017

This is the 10th year we have been giving GEM awards out. The award was started in order to recognize individuals that have made an exceptional effort to improving the quality of life in our community through volunteerism and dedication to their neighbors. Previous recipients have varied in age from the young to the young at heart. The recipients have been students, entrepreneurs, artist and community members. The one common thread between all of them is that they have a strong sense of community pride and enjoy giving of ones self. It is my honor to present this year’s selection for the GEM of Mantorville award.

Around 1945 Paul Pappas married Irene Stussy and the Hubble House was given to the couple as a wedding gift by Irene’s father. Paul opened the “high end” steak house in June of ’46. Growing the business from 3 employees to over 50 employees by ’59 Paul’s management of the restaurant was instrumental in making the business a success, increasing Mantorvilles’ national notoriety and was recognized as one of the top 500 supper clubs nation wide.

After Paul Pappus‘ death in ‘96 Paul’s son Don has taken over the reins of the Historic Hubble House. Under Don’s leadership the business still operated under his fathers original moto: “Put a good meal on the plate, charge a fair price, offer a pleasant atmosphere and treat your customers and employees right. If you do, people will come back."

The Pappus family has always been willing to offer a helping hand in local fund raising efforts, to host various meetings and help out financially with local causes.

For his commitment to maintaining one of Mantorvill’s historic landmarks combined with his community involvement it gives me great please to award Don Pappus with this years “GEM of Mantorville” award.

Previous Award Recipients:
Historic GEMs
Present GEMs
Irene Stussey Pappus Felker
Paul Larsen
Alonzo J Edgerton
John Olive
Teunis Slingerland, Sr.
Dick Leonard
Peter Mantor
E Jane Olive
Paul Pappus
Marlyn Schroeder
MaryLee Lambert
Willis and Gladys Carlson
Terry “Grumpy” Sell
John Hubbell
Anthony Hosftad
Walt Bruzek
Randy Carlson
Robert Anthony Sorenson
Mary Ann Bucher
Don Pappus

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Tenth Aniversery of the GEM of Mantorville Award

The Mantorville Economic Development Authority has been awarding the GEM of Mantorville award for ten years now. This years presentation will mark a special milestone in the EDA's recognition of those that have made a real contribution to Mantorville. Each year the recipients are divided into those that are still with us and making a difference and those that have departed, but their impact is still felt. The award was given to the following present and past recipients:
YearHistoric GEMs Present GEMs
2007 Irene Stussey Pappus Felker Paul Larsen
2008 Alonzo J Edgerton John Olive
2009 Teunis Slingerland, Sr. Dick Leonard
2010 Peter Mantor E Jane Olive
2011 Paul Pappus Marlyn Schroeder
2012 [open] MaryLee Lambert
2013 Willis and Gladys Carlson Terry “Grumpy” Sell
2014 John Hubbell Anthony Hosftad
2015 Walt Bruzek Randy Carlson
2016 Robert Anthony Sorenson Mary Ann Bucher
Stay Tuned for this years recipients.....

Monday, September 4, 2017

Collaboration is a good thing!

September 4, 2017

Good community stewardship involves fighting waste, listening to concerns and looking for areas of collaboration across governmental lines. We have received some good news earlier this fall in regards to our Waste Water Treatment Plant and some possible State funding. We are still waiting for final confirmation on those opportunities. I wanted to share with my neighbors some of the other areas that your local leadership is working together to promote a strong and health community.

Joint Ventures:
The joint venture group is a formal committee that consists of the KM School, City of Kasson and the City of Mantorville. Each organization contributes financially to this group and the group makes capital expenditures, thereby avoiding duplication. Equipment that each organization would only utilize on an occasional basis can be purchased as a joint effort, thereby getting better leverage for our tax dollars. The group also looks to help build and maintain recreational infrastructure such as baseball game and practice fields. This summer the group updated basketball hoops and playing surfaces in both Mantorville and Kasson as well as funding repairs to fencing and field drainage. The group did meet a couple of weeks ago and we discussed the following items for possible future projects:
  • Traveling Soccer squad field requirements
  • New lighting for ball fields
  • Additional new fencing needs
The group will meet again this fall where we will determine which of these projects will get a focus for the coming year as well as discuss new projects for the next couple of years. I would encourage anyone that has ideas to share with this group to send those ideas to myself or superintendent Matuska and we will make sure to have those ideas explored at our next meeting.

Coalition of Governments:
The elected officials from the County, City of Mantorville and City of Kasson along with the Kasson-Mantorville superintendent all try to meet informally about once a quarter to keep all the other groups “in-the-loop” on what each other are working on. This gives us a chance to level-set on the progress of mutual projects (like the Waste Water Treatment Plant) as well as shed light of areas that the other organizations are looking at and might be of interest to the other members as well. We have been calling this group “COG” ( Coalition of Governments). The COG had an opportunity to meet this past week, and there was a lot of interest in Mantorville projects. We are looking to complete the Mantorville to Kasson connection line project in September now after a slight equipment setback. The MPCA will still need to sign off on all the work and our plans, and once completed we can start to make plans for a switch over, followed by a decommissioning project for our current plant site.
Marigold Days:
The Road work by Casey's general store started last Wednesday and should be completed by this weekend. This along with several cold patches that have been applied to pot holes in the parade route should put us in a good position for our End of Summer parade. Marigold Days is this coming weekend and again there are a lot of events to entertain every age group. The complete schedule of events can be found at and this year will include:
  • Grand Parade
  • Kiddie Parade
  • Firemen Dance
  • Saloon Dance
  • Courtesy Transportation between Mantorville and Kasson
  • Art Show
  • Car Show
  • Quilt Show
  • Melodramas
And much more. I am looking forward to seeing everyone down town for this celebration and I hope to have the opportunity to have a conversation with many of you.

Yours in Service,

Chuck Bradford
Mayor, City of Mantorville

Monday, August 28, 2017

State wide Mayors attending the Rededication ceremony

In the above two photos we can see the Mayors from around the State that were able to be a part of the Capitol Building re-dedication celebration. The second image shows off the amazing stone work that was preformed to give our "Peoples House" a much needed facelift.

Fall is coming

August 28, 2017
Time to celebrate:
September is approaching fast. The fall season bring many anticipated events. Our students’ head back to school, next Monday we celebrate the official end of summer and of course we can’t forget our own famous Marigold Days. Once again the Mantorville Economic Development Authority has made its selection for the recipient of this year’s Mantorville GEM award. This award is given to someone who has gone above and beyond to serve the people of Mantorville. Each year we recognize those that have departed this earth but their dedication and volunteerism is still felt as the first category, and we also recognize those individuals that are still making a difference. I always look forward to this presentation and I hope many of you are able to come down to be a part of this recognition and celebration. Once again we are going to have events for all age groups from Teddy Bear parades for our youngest citizens to the Fire department dance for those a little older. Please plan to make this year’s Marigold Days part of your weekend.

I was invited to be an official part of the
re-dedication of our State Capitol building.
The State has recently completed a four year renovation project, where structural, functional and aesthetic properties were all addressed and repaired. Both Sen. Dave Senjem and Sen. Carla Nelson were part of the committee that over-saw the planning and execution of this project and both were present for the ceremony. I have a picture of the beautifully restored capitol building’s marble work that I have uploaded to my blog on the right. You can see in this photo the level of detail and dedication that was applied to restore our Capitol to its former glory.

Fifth Street:
The City has addressed a few of the worst spots on Fifth Street. There is additional work to do on this street and there are plans for the next few years on how best to address those long-term issues. The City did address some severe issues on Fifth Street close to Highway 57. We had a section of the road patched as a stop gap until the full reconstruction can occur. Since we are looking at a full reconstruction on Fifth Street, the City did not perform extensive repairs to the rest of the road. The City also does a street survey periodically and we prioritize roads that need attention and in which order those roads needing attention should be scheduled. The selection criteria that helps determine priority is the current condition of the road, weather or not timely maintenance will prevent more long term deterioration, traffic levels and any adjacent infrastructure plans that can be scheduled at the same time. The process of prioritizing roadwork with adjacent infrastructure projects allows the City to get the best value for our citizen’s tax dollars.

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor - City of Mantorville

Monday, July 31, 2017

Water Tower Inspection

The City crew noticed that some water was over-flowing from the tower when the pumps were stuck on. When the crew talked to our engineer, Tim wanted to go up and inspect the down tube to check if there were any obstructions. After inspecting the Water Tower, no obstructions were noticed. I took the opportunity to click a few choice pictures from atop of the water tower and I wanted to share a few of these with our neighbors.
Baseball Diamond south of the Water Tower
Sunrise over the City of Mantorville

Where has all the water gone? Long time passing...

July 31, 2017
River Level
There are many theories floating around as to what happened to the river last week. While the construction crew was drilling under the river, they made a hole in the bottom of the river and all the water leaked out. Well that is one theory that I have heard that somehow does not hold the mustard. Another train of though is that the City had lowered the river level so that our younger citizens could see for themselves what dangers lies under the surface. Those that believe this is the reason should go with that and stop reading this section. Another good theory is that there were some trees that the City crew cut flush with the river surface during the winter and these needed to be removed before next winter. This is also a valid theory since our crew were actually able to accomplish this work while the river level was down. Some on social media have gone as far to theorize that since all water is going to go to Kasson now that the river has been diverted there. Ummm nope! Ok, Chuck, enough with the conspiracy theories what is going on? The City crew lowered the river level so that the dam can be inspected. There was some known damage and we wanted to inspect the dam. The DNR also took this opportunity to inspect our dam. The City and the DNR are discussing the bet plans for repairs on the dam and since any work we will preform will need to be permitted though the DNR, the river level was returned to the normal level while these discussions take place  The City will work with the DNR and our City Engineer to determine the best course of action for repairs and then lower the river again to preform the work.

Waste Water Treatment Project
The connection between Mantorville and Kasson is progressing on schedule for an August completion date. Many of you have noticed that the driveway at Casey's was dug up last week. The City is working on adding new sewer connections to some of the RV sites while the line is run to the existing treatment plant. The work of making connections to the RV sites combined with the subterranean topography was contraindicate of directional drilling. The next stage of construction will require the City of Mantorville and the City of Kasson to be in close communication. The two cities will work with the MPCA for final ok for additional capacity and the actual commencement of flow from Mantorville.

National Night out
Once again the City had hosted a National Nigh Out celebration. This year the State Legislature has changed the law so that the City can spend City money on the celebration. In the past we have utilized our non-profit organizations to help fund raise for the event. Now the City can actually preform the fund raising activity. We truly appreciate all the donations and the volunteers that have continued to help with our celebration. This is always a great opportunity for our citizens to spend some time to get to know each other as well as for our City officials to listen to concerns from our residents. I wanted to thank everyone that made our City's celebration part of there Tuesday night.

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor - City of Mantorville

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Happy Fourth of July

In 1814 Fort McHenry was relentlessly bombarded by the British. The pounding was so sever that
according to quote on The Smithsonian's web site that has been attributed to Francis Scott Key, the author of the Star Spangled Banner "It seemed as though mother earth had opened and was vomiting shot and shell in a sheet of fire and brimstone,". The attack lasted so long and was so intense that no one expected the Americans to survive. When dawn finally broke the American flag did still fly over the fort. The British had not taken the fort and the determination of the Amneri9can soldier was reveled to be unwavering. What Keys did not know at them time when he wrote the poem that later became our National Anthem was that several times during the night the flag pole had been struck and fallen and each time another man would venture fourth, right our flag and more often than not meet their own fate. It is this legacy that we celebrate each year on the fourth of July. While this battle took place in September, many believe this to be a critical turning point in the war. This year when you see those rockets bursting in air during the fireworks display, remember what those bright colors and loud booms truly represent. For all the patriots that have continued on in the Tradition of Fort McHenry and placed themselves in harms way to be vigilant for all of our freedoms, THANK YOU! Know that for you, our faithful defenders, that with each burst in the sky this fourth of July that we are thinking of you.

Another Successful Stagecoach Days

June 26, 2017
Stagecoach Days
This past weekend we had another successful Stagecoach days. I have posted some pictures on my blog of the activities in our community this past weekend. I wanted to thank all our volunteers, vendors, craftsmen, artist and participants for helping pull this years event together.

Waste Water Project:
The line along 615th Street has been installed and the terrane roughly restored. The installed line continues Northward on the West side of Highway 57. The line has been installed up to the south side of County Road 12. Directional drilling under Highway 57 and under the river started last week and continues this week. Once all the pipe is in the ground, the line will be pressure tested with a pneumatic bleed down test in sections. When the entire line passes the leak down test, the project can transition to installation of pumps in Mantorville; the completion of the reception system in Kasson; and finally, when both cities are ready and the MPCA has cleared the projects, the City of Mantorville can start pumping to Kasson. The City of Mantorville will then have a decommissioning project to conduct at the current Waste Water Treatment Plant. The decommissioning project will be a separate project from any renovation work to re-purpose the current building. The City is still expecting a connection in August, look for additional updates on my blog and in future articles.

No Cliff Diving!:
Reminder, the City will be installing no trespassing signs along the top of the cliff trail and the Sheriff's office has been informed to enforce the no trespassing rule. Under no circumstance is anyone allowed to jump off or attempt to jump off the cliffs adjacent to Riverside Park. Violators will be cited and fined!

Yours in service,

Chuck Bradford,
Mayor - City of Mantorville

Thank you for a great Stagecoach Days

The weather for this years Stagecoach Days was pleasant and sunny. There was a rubber duck race for the kids as well as a Teddy Bear picnic. On Sunday the annual tractor pull was held. I wanted to thank all the vendors, craftsmen, artist, participants and visitors who made this event a great success. I wanted to post some pictures of the events that were available during this years event.