Martha speaks at different churches about her book “Dear David,” and David is there to answer questions people may have about his journey. (submitted photos)
Mother and son tell their story of overcoming addiction
It was never something Martha Wegner thought would happen to her family.
Her teenage son, David, became addicted to drugs, and she was forced to give him a “tough love” ultimatum: get treatment or get out.
“Most people say they could never do that, but we didn’t have any choice. There was nothing left for us to do,” Martha says. “He wasn’t getting the help he needed, and it was really causing havoc in our family.”
This moment was just one stop in David’s three-year battle with addiction. Now, Martha and David travel to area churches talking about their family’s struggle and how they overcame it.
For the past 18 years, Barb and Ed Gorski have been volunteering around the community, including Gramcery Co-Op, where they live. They are the 2016 recipients of the Service to Others Humanitarian Recognition.
Like clockwork, Barb, 78, and Ed, 83, Gorski pull up to Neighbors, Inc., in South St. Paul to unload their minivan full of bread donations.
Andre Shoals, the chair, brought numerous characters to life in Chanhassen’s production of Disney’s “Beauty and the Beast” such as an enchanted chair. (submitted photos)
Local actor Andre Shoals returns to the Chanhassen stage in ‘Beauty and the Beast’
As the stage lights turn on at the main stage of Chanhassen Dinner Theatre, a lone figure sits on the side, getting ready to set the scene for “Beauty and the Beast.”
All attention is on Andre Shoals, 45, who is the narrator and an ensemble member in Chanhassen’s new musical production of the fairy tale that was brought to life in a popular Disney animated movie.
The talented Shoals is dressed in a cloth coat and scarf, a simple outfit that gives no hint of the inventive, colorful costuming that theater-goers are about to see in this visual feast for the eyes.
In his other “Beauty” role, Shoals plays a chair. Attached to the chest of his shimmering silver costume is a chair, which at one point Belle sits in, as Shoals kneels and looks at her with admiration.
Creagan, right, met soldiers from many of the NATO countries, including a soldier from Hungary. (submitted photos)
Local chaplain returns from serving overseas
Getting to where he is today meant the Rev. Michael Creagan’s life changed course more than once. First off, he says he never thought he would be in the Catholic priesthood -- let alone that it would lead him to serving as an Army chaplain in Kosovo.
Creagan, 45, majored in international studies at the University of St. Thomas with the hope of someday working for the U.S. Foreign Service.
“It was probably half way through college, that God really called me to priesthood. In fact, at first I thought ‘oh no’ because I don’t like public speaking and I tried to come up with all the excuses,” Creagan says.
He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in 1997 after attending St. Paul Seminary. Then he never thought he would join the Army National Guard.
Podgorski seeking DFL endorsement
South St. Paul City Council member Todd Podgorski announced he intends to run for the open state Senate District 52 seat.
“This is a position I’ve been interested in for some time now, and I want to work for justice for all,” Podgorski, also a Ramsey County Sheriff’s deputy, said in a statement.