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Artist uses 'child-like' tool for expression
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Crayon is the medium of choice for Lakeville artist Kelly Anderson. While some people may have retired the colorful tool after childhood, Anderson has embraced the waxy medium through her encaustic technique.

“I wanted to take the crayons and use it like a child-like tool and implement it when I really started painting for myself,” Anderson said.

Using her non-dominant hand, Anderson draws on canvas with a crayon while her other hand controls the temperature of the powered heat gun which melts the wax onto the surface. The end product is a brightly colored animal portrait, several of which are now up at the Owatonna Hospital’s Healing Arts exhibit until February 2021.

Kelly Anderson now uses a soldering gun with different tips to control the heat output when she is creating her artwork. (Photo courtesy of Kelly Anderson)

Anderson said she didn’t get into art until her junior year of high school after one of her pieces was published in a journal. She then went to college to earn a degree in graphic design and found a job designing cold air inflatables after graduation. Later, she decided to pursue an art business, participating in art fairs, leading group painting sessions, creating statues and completing interactive mural commissions among other art projects over the last decade.

While the pandemic prevented her from showing her art, Anderson worked on a sketching side project where she would draw a picture based on one word submitted by the customer. She completed over 140 sketch orders in about a three-week period.

Art has always been a way for Anderson to heal from life’s setbacks and to express her feelings in a healthy way.

“It allows you to put your emotions down,” Anderson said. “I think a lot of people take that for granted, like not really knowing good ways to release their emotions or what they are feeling or thinking and I’ve learned that art is a very safe way to do that.”

Regardless of whether someone is good at art, Anderson still feels that just the act of creating art can totally change one’s mindset and encourage them to view the world through another perspective.

”My mixed media images depict feelings that everyone encounters at some point in their life. The crayon ties in those childlike feelings of safety and comfort. I use other items to tie in the meaning. I include a dictionary cutout relevant to the overall theme so one can visualize the emotions. Most of all it adds a personal touch,” Kelly Anderson said in her artist bio. (Photo courtesy of Kelly Anderson)

Anderson says an animal portrait takes about 12 hours to complete. She begins by sketching out her idea, then decides which colors to use and where they will go on a separate piece of paper. She’ll often pick colors that are next to each other on the color wheel, to avoid the muddying effects of placing colors opposite of each other on the color wheel next to one another.

Anderson works from one side of the canvas to the other to avoid remelting the wax already placed on the canvas and to prevent colors from mixing. She sometimes takes breaks in the process to let the wax cool off and solidify before moving onto the next color.

“When you are melting crayon, you don’t really have a lot of room for error,” Anderson said.

Because of the nature of the medium, it’s difficult to fix mistakes. Once a color is laid onto the canvas it’s difficult to remove it. While scratching off the wax can help save the piece, other times she prefers to toss the piece.

“I haven’t really been able to find a way to work with it, I’ve scratched it off before and then was able to start over but I’m still not happy with it, because it gives it a different texture,” Anderson said.

While she sometimes includes mixed media in her art such as colored pencil, acrylic paint and scraps of dictionary paper, Anderson says most of the art in the Healing Arts exhibit is solely melted crayon.

Christine Schorn 

“I’m kind of all over the place,” Kelly Anderson said of the various mediums she works with. Beyond melted wax, she also works with acrylic paint, colored pencil and scraps of dictionary pages. (Photo courtesy of Kelly Anderson)

Anderson draws inspiration from her life experiences and things that catch her eye. For example, she recently came across a bunch of dinosaur statues and was inspired to create some dinosaur-themed mixed media pieces, which can be found on her website crayonkelly.com/animals. Some of the healing arts pieces were completed after she got back from a trip to Africa.

“I just kind of wanted to lay down some of the different animals I had seen and experienced, but add color to it,” Anderson said.

More recently she has been incorporating outlines of female figures as a way to artistically express the concepts of change, adaptation, growth and vulnerability among other human experiences. Most of the work from this series is emotion based, she says. She intentionally chooses colors and mixed media that will come together to depict each pieces’ idea and emotion.

While working with melted crayons can be rather unpredictable, Anderson says she enjoys the process because she never knows exactly how it will turn out.

“For me, the fun part is to see it come together, like what I have in my brain and what kind of comes out,” Anderson said.

Christine Schorn 

Using her non-dominate hand, Kelly Anderson draws with the crayon while holding the heat gun with the other hand to melt the crayon wax onto the canvas, or in this photo, a pair of shoes. (Photo courtesy of Kelly Anderson)


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Ring the bells: Salvation Army chapters in dire need of volunteers
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While ringing the bells for the Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign one winter, Jim Dale remembers one woman in particular who touched his heart.

She approached him slowly and poured change and dollar bills from an envelope into the kettle. She then told Dale she saved up a donation for the Salvation Army each year because without the organization’s support, she wouldn’t have had Christmas as a child.

“Those sorts of things are priceless,” said Dale, who co-coordinates Rice County’s Red Kettle Campaign. “You never know who you’re going to meet.”

The Salvation Army Bells will be ringing well before Christmas this year, and in some locations, they’ve already started. Rice County kicks off its Red Kettle Campaign Friday while volunteers began ringing the bells at four Steele County locations a couple weeks ago. But in order to raise the goal of $50,000 per county, campaign coordinators need volunteers to fill hundreds of two-hour time slots.

Dale said only 60 slots out of about 580 are covered in Rice County so far. Linda Seljeseth, coordinator of the Steele County Red Kettle Campaign, said recruiting volunteers is a struggle in her area as well.

“We’re just kind of worried about making that goal because of everything going on [with the pandemic],” Seljeseth said. “So we just need all the bell ringers we can get.”

From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. in Rice County, participating businesses will host bell ringers during four two-hour time slots Fridays and Saturdays. The weeks of Thanksgiving and Christmas will not have bell ringing on Friday and Saturday. Instead the bell ringing will take place the weekdays leading up to the holidays. If a church or organization wants to volunteer on another day that isn’t scheduled, the Salvation Army will make accommodations.

Locations starting Friday in Rice County include Fareway and HyVee in Faribault, Family Fare and Cub Foods in Northfield and Mackenthun’s Fine Foods in Lonsdale. The Faribault Walmart begins the campaign at both doors Nov. 21.

Steele County locations include HyVee, Fleet Farm, Fareway and Cabela’s in Owatonna. The official Red Kettle Campaign kick-off for Steele County is Friday, Nov. 20, when Walgreens, Walmart and Cash Wise join. Time slots will be from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. starting Nov. 20, but until then, shifts are 1 to 7 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays.

While it’s unclear at this point how COVID-19 will impact the campaign, both Rice and Steele counties are taking precautions to ensure the volunteers and those who donate stay safe and healthy. Coordinators will provide sanitizer and wipes for cleaning off the bells and aprons, and ask everyone to wear a mask or face covering and stand six feet apart.

Where the funding goes

Apart from making donations at local businesses, community members may send a check to 617 Third Ave. NW, Faribault for the Rice County Red Kettle Campaign, or to the Steele County Red Kettle Campaign by sending or hand delivering donations to the Salvation Army Steele County Service Unit at 1810 S Cedar Ave., Owatonna.

For the second year in a row in Steele County, donors may use their credit cards to make payments at the kettles. Donors may also type a code into their phones and select a donation of $5, $10 or $20.

The Rice County Red Kettle Campaign generated $36,000 last year, which was enough to meet the needs of those who contacted the Salvation Army for assistance. However, during the coronavirus pandemic, the Faribault Salvation Army store couldn’t make enough of a profit to stay open. It closed in May.

Dale said around 200 families in Rice County benefited from the donations last year. For families and individuals in a crisis situation, the Red Kettle Campaign meets emergency assistance needs like food vouchers, clothing, a temporary shelter and car repairs if someone’s vehicle breaks down in the area.

In addition, the Red Kettle Campaign proceeds go to the Shop With a Cop program in both Rice and Steele counties. Ten Faribault children and 10 Northfield children attended the Rice County event this October, in which they shopped for winter wear with local law enforcement at Walmart and Target. Steele County hosts its annual Shop With a Cop in December.

The Red Kettle Campaign proceeds also goes to a children’s summer camp at the Boundary Waters, for which the Salvation Army provides transportation.

In Steele County specifically, the Red Kettle proceeds also go to the back-to-school program in which the Salvation Army Steele County Service Unit distributes backpacks and school supplies to students. Last year, Seljeseth said her unit gave away 300 backpacks.

Seljeseth explained that 13% of donations collected in a county go to the Salvation Army Headquarters to assist those impacted by natural disasters like hurricanes or wildfires.

“It helps with homeless people and families that just need help right now. And there are a lot of people really hurting,” she said.


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Two Rivers announces second new home for Owatonna

After months of discussion with two major local businesses, Two Rivers Habitat for Humanity was able to make dreams of stability and prosperity become a reality for a second family come 2021.

Thanks to a land donation by Matt Kottke of Owatonna and two large sponsorships from Daikin Applied and Climate by Design International (CDI), the nonprofit that serves five area counties will be building not one but two homes in Owatonna come spring.

“You don’t have to spend much time in Owatonna before you realize that this is a very special community where people truly care for one another,” said Kevin Worden, president of Two Rivers. “Because of this, we’re thrilled to share that two families will have an affordable, safe and healthy place to live through the construction of two new homes in 2021.”

The two homes will be made possible after a donation of property on the corner of Linn and Mosher avenues from Kottke’s family. Ken Quattrin, the marketing and communications personnel for Two Rivers, said the property was unique in size as it was long and narrow, allowing the nonprofit the opportunity to work with the city of Owatonna to divide the lots.

“Since it’s such a long, stretched-out property, we are asking the city to cut that lot in half so we can build another home – one on the Linn side and one on the Mosher side,” Quattrin said, adding that the replotting has not been formalized yet, but he has a good-faith understanding that it’ll happen following a formal presentation next week. “The family on the Linn side is a single father of three from Owatonna, and his home will be sponsored by Daikin and [CDI].”

Daikin, a heating and cooling equipment manufacturer that employs more than 1,200 people in their Owatonna and Faribault facilities, has made a $75,000 donation toward the Linn Avenue home. CDI, a dehumidification and air-handling technology manufacturer based in Owatonna, donated an additional $25,000 for the same home.

“We are honored to have the opportunity to work with Daikin Applied and CDI to empower a family in Owatonna to have an affordable, safe and healthy home by the end of 2021,” Worden said. “Strong corporate citizens coming together with dedicated residents who care about their community can accomplish amazing things, and we’re excited that we are all coming together to partner with a hardworking future Habitat homebuyer.”

Because of the $100,000 sponsorship between the two businesses, the land donation and the partnership with the city, Quattrin said Two Rivers was able to inform a second family from Oronoco that they will be relocated to Owatonna and moving in to the Mosher Avenue home.

“The last time we built a home in Owatonna was in 2017, so for us to build two homes simultaneously side by side, it’s so exciting,” Quattrin said. “There’s nothing really else that tops that. It shows our commitment to the community and our commitment to what we stand for, and we just want people to know that after the dedication this month and come April we will be full steam ahead.”

“Habitat for Humanity has a long and proud history of building strength, stability and self-reliance through shelter for Owatonna families,” Worden said. “We are honored to be able to build on that history next year … it’s time to get building.”


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District One nurse on probation for sexual contact with patient while in Iowa
  • Updated

A District One Hospital nurse anesthetist’s license to practice is under probation after an Iowa state board found he and an inappropriate relationship with a patient under his care. The relationship took place before Heideman began working at District One.

In an order issued in October but posted on the Iowa Board of Nursing website on Nov. 4, two licenses issued to Dean Alan Heideman, 44, of Clear Lake, Iowa, were placed on probationary status for two years.

Heideman is licensed in Iowa as a registered nurse and as a certified registered nurse anesthetist.

Allina Health, in an emailed statement Thursday, said “We were recently made aware of an issue involving Dean Heideman, a certified registered nurse anesthetist. The conduct that was the subject of an order released by the Iowa Board of Nursing on Nov. 4, occurred at his previous place of employment in Iowa and not District One Hospital. Allina Health is taking appropriate steps to look into this matter.”

According to the order, while employed at an unnamed clinic in January 2019, Heideman established care for a patient and then engaged in a relationship with the patient that included sexual contact on more than one occasion in 2019.

Heideman’s LinkedIn.com account says that he has been employed at District One Hospital in Faribault since August. Before that, he worked from June 2009 to August 2020 at Wright Medical Center in Clarion, Iowa.

From at least January 2017 to May 2018, according to Globe Gazette archives, Heideman also worked at Hancock County Health System.

In addition to his probation, Heideman must report to a case manager and get that person’s approval for any place he works. Heideman must also notify his current employer of his status and the employer must file a monthly report describing Heideman’s activities, level of competence and ability to interact professionally with patients and coworkers.

Heideman must also submit to medical, mental health or substance abuse evaluation and pay for any costs related to adhering to the board’s orders.