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St. Mary's student McKaia Ryberg sang at Gov. Mark Dayton's inauguration. Tribune file photo

Gov. Dayton honors promise to Bird Island, Minn., youth

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news Willmar, 56201
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

BIRD ISLAND -- Students at St. Mary's School in Bird Island are preparing to host Gov. Mark Dayton next week.

The governor's office on Thursday afternoon confirmed plans for Dayton's visit Jan. 27, said School Principal Tracy Bertrand. The governor will be accompanied by Sen. Gary Kubly, DFL-Granite Falls.


The visit honors a promise he made to St. Mary's student McKaia Ryberg. She had invited him to visit her school.

The governor had discovered Ryberg's talents when she sang the national anthem at a Tim Orth Foundation event as a sixth-grader in 2010. She accepted his invitation to perform the national anthem at both the Governor's inauguration one year ago and during an October 2010 visit by President Obama to Minneapolis.

Bertrand said the school is excited about the upcoming visit and hoping to host an event for all 123 of the elementary students. s