Around Our Region published April 12, 2023

The weekly Around Our Region calendar of events is published Wednesdays. Submissions may be emailed to with “Around our Region” in the subject line at least a week in advance.


Community Hot Topics

WILLMAR — The League of Women Voters of Willmar Area will be holding “Community Hot Topics” from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. Wednesdays at the Willmar Public Library. The conservations about issues impacting the community are open to everyone. Feel free to bring lunch/snacks. Coffee and water will be provided. The first three are:

  • April 19: Public safety with Kandiyohi County Sheriff Eric Tollefson.
  • May 17: Child care in rural communities by Michelle Marotzke of the Mid-Minnesota Development Commission and Sarah Swedburg of the Kandiyohi County and City of Willmar Economic Development Commission.
  • June 21: Youth mental health in Kandiyohi County with Kim Hanson from Woodland Centers.

Willmar Civic Center

WILLMAR — The Willmar Civic Center has two ice arenas, the Cardinal Arena and the Blue Line Arena which has curling ice. The Events and Recreation Center has court surfaces for basketball, tennis, pickleball, volleyball; an indoor playground; meeting rooms and more. Admission is charged for some open events. For more information, the number is 320-235-1454 . Open events in the next week include:

Indoor playground: 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 5 to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and during all events at the Civic Center, including the weekends. It is designed for ages 2-10.


Open pickleball: 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday; 8 a.m. to noon Tuesday and Thursday.

Open tennis: 7:30 to 9:30 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Keep reading for more of this week's calendar items below the related content.

More community news:
There are several opportunities to hear live music under the summer sky across the region.
At Robbins Island Regional Park, visitors will have the opportunity to use several new park shelters while enjoying other upgrades the city of Willmar has made over the last several years.
Visitors come by the dozens to celebrate summer with food, laughter and parades throughout the region.

Willmar Community Center

WILLMAR — The Willmar Community Center has several events set. All events are free unless noted. The phone number is 320-262-5288 . For reservations, call or go online at .

Willmar Area Senior Citizens Club: April 12, 2 p.m., $2, music by Allen Carlson.

Elks dance: April 12, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. The Elks sponsor the dances for local and surrounding group home residents to enjoy a night of dancing and socializing.

Friday afternoon of dancing: April 14, 1 to 4 p.m., music by Leroy & Jerry; $7 dancers, $2 listeners.


Little Art Gallery session: April 14, 2 to 4 p.m., free. Create art to be on display in community art galleries.

Jolly Twirlers Square Dance: April 15, 7 p.m. All are welcome to join in this square dancing evening.

Veterans coffee social: April 17, 9:30 to 11 a.m., open to all veterans, police, fire and emergency medical services members.

Community health fair: April 19, noon to 2 p.m. Check out different health booths, topics and training.

Friday afternoon of dancing: April 21, Dance at Life Connections, Willmar Civic Center, to Larry Olson Band.

Daddy Daughter Formal: April 22, 4:30 to 7 p.m., purchase tickets by 4 p.m. April 14. Fathers, grandfathers, father figures: Enjoy an evening with your 4- to 12-year-old princess. Tickets are $25 per couple, $10 for extra guest. Doors open at 4:30 p.m., dinner served at 5 p.m., dance until 7 p.m.

Community Book Club: April 24, 3:30 p.m. Join the Community Book club for discussion of a new book picked each month.

Community bingo: April 25, 5 to 7 p.m., $3 per person, two cards at a time.


Community Kitchen — Salsa with Homemade Chips: April 27, 3:30 p.m., $8, register by April 24. Come make salsa and chips for Cinco de Mayo.

Community crafts: April 29, 3:30 p.m., $14, register by April 23; all ages. Make this outdoor wood utensil wind chime.

Drum circle: Every Wednesday, 5 to 6 p.m. Come learn fun rhythms and enjoy making beats with other musicians. All ages, abilities are welcome to this free event.

Weekly events: Chess club, Yahtzee, Farkle, Hand & Foot cards, cribbage, puzzle exchange, exercise classes, Jolly Twirlers square dance lessons and open woodshop including some evenings and Saturdays, contact Community Center for details and prices.

Willmar Public Library

WILLMAR — The Willmar Library is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Friday and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. The website is . Call 320-235-3162 . Curbside pickup available during regular hours. Programs are in-person in the library. Advance registration required for some events. The WiFi can be accessed 24/7 from a parked car in the lot behind the library or in front of the building using your library card or through Overdrive.

Brainfuse HelpNow: Free online tutoring service, grades K-12, one-to-one live homework help from online tutors between 2 and 11 p.m. daily; English or Spanish; math, science, English/language arts, social studies and reading assistance; app available for mobile.  

Wisdom and Wine: Tickets are on sale through May for the Willmar Friends of the Library fundraiser set for the evening of June 8 at the Willmar Conference Center.

Little People storytime: Every Wednesday, 10 a.m., ages 0-3, no registration required.


Teen Gaming Club: April 12, 3:30 p.m., ages 12-18, no registration required. Play games on the Xbox One or board and card games. Some games are rated 13+. Refreshments provided.

STEMtastic Thursday: April 13, 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Learn about non-renewable resources using noodles. For ages 7-12.

Teen Gaming Club: April 14, 5:30 p.m., ages 12-18, no registration required. Play games on the Xbox One or board and card games. Some games are rated 13+. Refreshments provided.

Adult game night: April 18, 6 to 8 p.m. Invite your friends to play some of the library’s games or bring a favorite from home. Everyone 16 and over are welcome. No cost and no registration.

Homeschool Hour: April 19, 2 p.m., for homeschooled students. Create a do-it-yourself rain gauge and wind vane to learn about the weather. For kids 12 and under.

Caregivers Need Care Too: April 19, 3 p.m. Learn what caregiving is, the resources available, and more from representatives from the Minnesota River Area Agency on Aging and Lutheran Social Service. Register in advance by calling the library.

Teen movie: April 19, 5:30 p.m., ages 12-18, no registration required, popcorn and refreshments provided.

Adult Book Club: April 20, noon, “The Family Chao” by Lan Samantha Chang, book discussion upstairs at the library. New members are always welcome. May 18 book is “This Time Tomorrow” by Emma Straub and June 15 book is “Lessons in Chemistry” by Bonnie Garmus.


Adult movie matinee: April 21, 2 p.m., “Whitney Houston: I Wanna Dance With Somebody,” no cost or registration, refreshments provided.

Pajama-rama storytime: April 25, 6:30 p.m. Come in your pajamas, bring a blanket and listen to stories. Milk and cookies afterward before you head home to bed.

ECFE at the Library: April 28, 10 a.m., ages 0-6, free, no registration necessary, Sing songs, read books and make crafts with Willmar’s Early Childhood Family Education teacher.

Teen take-and-make: April 3 opened for bunny in a flower pot and April 17 opens for flower bead ring. For ages 12-18, limit one per person as supplies are limited. Sign up on the library website.

Teen lit loot: Sign up and you will receive a library book based on your interests and a bag of goodies to go with it. One per month and will need to re-register each month. April’s theme is nature.

Physical activities

Open Gym at Jefferson: 12:30 to 3:30 p.m. Fridays during the school year. Check in at the Community Education office. Gym and equipment available for ages 0-8 with parental supervision. Families put toys away when finished.

Our newsroom occasionally reports stories under a byline of "West Central Tribune staff report." Often, the "West Central Tribune staff report" byline is used when rewriting basic news briefs that originate from official sources, such as a city press release about a road closure, and which require little or no reporting. At times, this byline is used when a news story includes numerous authors or when the story is formed by aggregating previously reported news from various sources. If outside sources are used, it is noted within the story.

The West Central Tribune newsroom can be reached via email: or phone 320-235-1150.
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