PET FOOD DRIVE: Oakwood Hills Animal Hospital, Pet Food Plus and Chippewa Valley Cat Club are teaming up to hold their annual pet food drive through Dec. 15.

All donations collected during the Can Do 4 Pets drive will be delivered to St. Francis Food Pantry on Truax Blvd.

All cash donations will be used to purchase additional food.

The goal is to help Chippewa Valley families who are struggling financially with feeding their pets. Last year almost 9,000 pounds were collected.

A Thanksgiving dinner will be held from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 28 at Unity Christ Center, 1808 Folsom St. The cost is a freewill offering and all leftovers will be donated to Sojourner House. All proceeds will be used to purchase pet food.

Donations of pet food, treats and litter can be dropped off at the following locations in containers provided by Boxx Sanitation:

Barks and Recreation, Dogtopia, Eau Claire Animal Hospital, Embark, Gold’s Gym, Kindness Animal Hospital, Lake Wissota Animal Hospital, Northside Pet Hospital, Oakwood Hills Animal Hospital, Pet Food Plus, Paws and Claws, Prism Coupons, Riverview Animal Hospital, The Ark Animal Hospital, The Attic, Tropic Waters, Unity Christ Center and Westgate Animal Hospital.

Monetary donations can be made at any of the collection sites. Checks should be made out to Chippewa Valley Cat Club. Donations also can be made via Paypal to

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TALKING MANURE: Animal manure production is estimated at more than a billion tons per year in the U.S. Livestock production and, more specifically, dairy farming, is significant to Wisconsin’s economy.

Manure produced by livestock benefits the soil by increasing organic matter and nutrient content. However, high amounts of applied manure also raise environmental concerns. Is manure, overall, a blessing to our soils, or is it more of a curse?

Natasha Macnack, assistant professor of soil science at UW-River Falls, will help answer that question and others during her presentation, “Manure: Curse or Blessing to our Soils?” from noon to 1 p.m. Thursday for UW-Eau Claire-Barron County’s “Thursdays at the U” event.

The discussion will be in the Blue Hills Lecture Hall (Room 234, Ritzinger Hall) on the Rice Lake campus.

Macnack will discuss the ways in which we can reduce the negative impacts of manure application and what the latest research says about the topic.

Her own research focuses on improving the efficiency of nutrient uptake and the effects of organic soil amendments on soil health and crop yields.

Macnack holds a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from the Anton De Kom University of Suriname and master’s and doctoral degrees in soil science from Oklahoma State University.

She has experience working in post-harvest quality control and production agriculture in Suriname.

For more information about “Thursdays at the U,” contact Linda Tollefsrud at or 715-788-6216.

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SONS OF NORWAY: Sons of Norway, Loven Lodge 29, will meet at 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 16, at L.E. Phillips Senior Center, 1616 Bellinger St.

Learn about the history of different types and styles of Norwegian sweaters including Setesdal, Fana, Marius, and Olympic.

Laurann Gilbertson will talk about the symbolism behind some of the patterns and colors on sweaters made today.

Gilbertson holds a bachelor’s in anthropology and master’s in textiles and clothing from Iowa State University.

She was textile curator at Vesterheim Norwegian-American Museum in Decorah, Iowa, for 19 years and is now the chief curator there.

Among Gilbertson’s duties are overseeing the collection of more than 30,000 artifacts, creating exhibitions and leading textile study tours to Norway.

The public is welcome and refreshments will be served.

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SENIOR CLASSES: L.E. Phillips Senior Center, 1616 Bellinger St., is holding five classes in November:

• Roundabouts, 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday, Nov. 19: The Eau Claire Police Department will discuss the new roundabouts and offer winter driving tips. Class is free.

• Security Health Plan Medicare Advantage & Supplement Plans, 10 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 20: This presentation will teach you the options offered by Security Health Plan during the 2019 annual election period. It is good for those who are already on a Medica Cost Plan or those who are interested and would like to learn more information. Class is free.

• Lung Cancer: Are You at Risk?, 9 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 20: Learn about the types of lung cancer, and new treatments as well as information on radon, the second leading cause of lung cancer. Class is free.

• Finding Solutions for Everyday Problems, 2 to 3:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 20: Emotions are normal. The Mind-Body Connection, our emotional responses to thoughts, memories and experiences. Class is free.

• Tips for Staying Fit During the Winter Months, 9 a.m. Thursday, Nov. 21: Don’t let the snow and cold deter you from staying active. Regular activity can help battle the winter blues and lift our mood and energy. Come to this session to explore opportunities to continue to stay active this winter. A home exercise program will be provided, as well as other tips and tricks for staying fit. Class is free.

From staff reports

Contact: 715-833-9207,