Home & Self Improvement Show opens

NEW ULM – The sweet smell of Kettle Corn and pecans cut the air outside the New Ulm Civic Center as the 33rd Annual Home & Self Improvement Show opened.

The Brainerd International Raceway (BIR) Performance Driving School exhibit was among the more popular stops at the show.

Driving school owner and director and past American Le Mans Panoz GTS Pro Series winner Gary Curtis displayed a race car and offered any licensed driver age 16 or older the opportunity to drive a race car of their own car on the BIR track. Complementary performance driving sessions are also offered.

Just inside the door to the south arena, New Ulm Battery members displayed their cannon and talked to people about joining the organization and their 2013 schedule that begins May 1 at the Minnesota State Capitol.

New Ulm Battery recruits must be older than age 18 or join with a parent, buy a uniform and appropriate shoes. They must be willing to make time commitments to take part in Civil War re-enactments, area parades, firing demonstrations, educational programs and much more. You’ll learn to safely load and fire the Civil War era canon, care for and ride horses and learn the history of the Battery, artillery and Civil War. For more information, find the New Ulm Battery on Facebook.

The Brown County Humane Society seeks volunteers including high school and college students, homemakers, retirees, the temporarily unemployed and anyone who loves animals.

The Brown County Dairy Association offers free samples of several cheese flavors.

Volunteers are needed to walk dogs, clean dog and cat cages, do animal laundry, shelter cleaning and maintenance, work in the office, recruit new members and organize and help at fund-raisers.

The City of New Ulm’s 5th Annual 2013 Big Tree Contest involves finding the largest Elm tree in the city limits and winning up to $200 towards planting a tree on the city-approved tree list, anywhere in the city, including your yard. Entry deadline is Monday, April 22, 2013.

The City of New Ulm encourages property owners to plant trees on their boulevards. If guidelines are followed, a reimbursement program assists property owners. A diseased tree removal program including stump grinding also exists. Call the Street Department at 359-8296 for more information.

The New Ulm Public Utilities booth displayed new LED, CFL and halogen light bulbs. The 10-year average cost is $40 for LED lights, $43 for CFL, $110 for halogen and $160 for incandescent bulbs. For more information, visit Lighting.MnCERTs.org

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) Forestry Division distributed a Homeowner’s Guide to Creating a Healthy Yard. The plant lists includes plants, shrubs and trees.

Other information available included a Home Buyer’s and Seller’s Guide to Radon, written by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. For more information, visit www.epa.gov/iaq

The free show continues 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday.

Fritz Busch can be e-mailed at fbusch@nujournal.com.

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