Sun Current http://current.mnsun.com Local News for Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Edina and Richfield Minnesota Fri, 31 Jul 2015 20:30:48 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Aquatics Center now open http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/aquatics-center-now-open/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/aquatics-center-now-open/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 20:30:48 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150401 Residents celebrated the completion of phase one at the Eden Prairie Aquatics Center July 21 with swimming and tours of the facility.

An Eden Prairie resident jumps off the climbing wall July 21. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)
An Eden Prairie resident jumps off the climbing wall July 21. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)

Mayor Nancy Tyra-Lukens and city staff addressed a full crowd during the opening ceremony.

“This was very long overdue,” Tyra-Lukens said.

The new facility features eight-lane competition pools equipped with diving boards and a climbing wall, spectator seating, a multipurpose room, training room, locker rooms and expanded fitness areas.

Though the mayor herself did not jump in, city staff did, including Parks and Recreation Director Jay Lotthammer.

“This is going to be a great asset for the community,” Lotthammer said.

The new aquatics center features two eight-lane pools, diving boards and a climbing wall. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)
The new aquatics center features two eight-lane pools, diving boards and a climbing wall. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)

Before the celebration began, however, Tyra-Lukens called for a moment of silence for Foxjet Coach Brenda Larson and dive team member Sydney Galleger.

Construction at the center began in June 2014, and the second phase is expected to be complete in December. The next phase will include a water slide, hot tub and a zero-depth warm-water area.

Contact Michelle Doeden at michelle.doeden@ecm-inc.com

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Music in the Park tonight in Edina http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/music-in-the-park-tonight-in-edina/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/music-in-the-park-tonight-in-edina/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 19:55:46 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150439 Edina Arts & Culture Commission’s summer Music In the Park series will have its last show Friday, July 3, 6:30 p.m., at Rosland Park, 4300 W. 66th St., Edina. Alex Rossi will be performing. For more information, visit MusicInEdina.org.

Centennial Lakes will continue to have music, movies and other events this summer.

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Edina Art Center announces an evening with Kasey Lansdale http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/edina-art-center-announces-an-evening-with-kasey-lansdale/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/edina-art-center-announces-an-evening-with-kasey-lansdale/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 19:40:18 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150426 The Twin Cities Sisters in Crime mystery author group will host a concert at the Edina Art Center, 4701 W. 64th St., featuring Country Blues Singer Kasey Lansdale.

The event is 6:45-8:45 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 4. There will be a lecture with Lansdale 6:45-7:45 p.m., with an acoustic concert to follow. The event costs $25.

Twin Cities Sisters in Crime is a chapter of the national organization, Sisters in Crime. The group offers networking, advice and support to local mystery authors.

Kasey Lansdale is the daughter of Joe R. Lansdale, author of more than 40 novels and numerous short stories. His work has appeared in national anthologies, magazines and collections, as well as numerous foreign publications.

During the lecture, Kasey will share what it was like to grow up in the Lansdale home and offer perspective on her father’s work.

Kasey will perform her own work at an acoustic concert following the lecture. Kasey has recorded with Grammy Award-winning Producer John Carter Cash, who has produced legends such as Loretta Lynn, George Jones and Willie Nelson. She recorded her first studio album, “Restless,” in the historic Cash Cabin Studio in 2013.

Along with the “Restless” album release, Lansdale is performing both nationally and internationally, including large events and festivals such as the Halogaland Music Festival in Norway and The Piacenza Blues Festival in Italy.

Her music was featured in the film “Cold in July.”

The Lansdales’ books, CDs and DVDs will also be available for purchase at the Aug. 4 event.

Call the Edina Art Center at 952-903-5780 to register for this event.

Twin Cities Sisters in Crime has monthly meetings that are open to the public, featuring a variety of guest speakers.

For more information on the Edina Art Center or its programs, classes and events, visit
EdinaArtCenter.com.

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Scene & Heard: ‘Brickumentary’ is part film, part commercial, but still fun http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/scene-heard-brickumentary-is-part-film-part-commercial-but-still-fun/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/scene-heard-brickumentary-is-part-film-part-commercial-but-still-fun/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 19:00:04 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150414 Lego documentary logo
“A LEGO Brickmentary” opens Friday, July 31, at the Theaters at Mall of America in Bloomington and The Film Society at St. Anthony Main Theatre in Minneapolis.

 

By Jared Huizenga – Contributing Writer

Long before there were video games, movies, TV shows and large-scale playsets that cost hundreds of dollars, LEGOs were simple plastic building blocks that were found hiding in toy boxes and living room carpets in millions of homes around the world.

And now, the history of LEGO (which dates back to the 1940s) is on full display in the equal parts documentary and informercial film, “A LEGO Brickumentary.”

The film details LEGO’s origins, including the early misfortunes of Danish toymaker and company founder Ole Kirk Christiansen; the company’s initial rise to success (1970s and 1980s); its fall and near bankruptcy (most of the 1990s); and its re-ascent to the top of the toy market.

Narrated by one of LEGO’s trademark yellow people (voiced by Jason Bateman), “Brickumentary” shares a lot of interesting facts, photos and statistics about the toys and the people who love them – whether they are small children, artists or aspiring inventors and scientists.

Unfortunately, virtually every interesting tidbit that comes out of the film seems to come across as a “this is why you should buy LEGOs and LEGO-related merchandise” pitch.

However, having said that, if you can get past the idea that you’re essentially watching a 90-minute LEGO commercial, “Brickumentary” is interesting and pretty fun.

Its one-sided storytelling method almost certainly guarantees that it won’t be winning many awards, but at the very least it’s a fun trip down memory lane for anyone who’s ever played with LEGOs or a friendly reminder to parents who have stepped on one hidden in a carpet that the toy isn’t all that bad.

“A LEGO Brickmentary” opens Friday, July 31, at the Theaters at Mall of America in Bloomington and The Film Society at St. Anthony Main Theatre in Minneapolis.

★★★ of ★★★★★

Jared Huizenga is a freelance movie critic and entertainment reporter. He can be reached at moviesjared@gmail.com.

 

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Retiring Boomers: Change http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/retiring-boomers-change/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/retiring-boomers-change/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 18:52:49 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?guid=9fdc6e34d7a3a76249641316efc0c55a Are you one of the largest generation in American history? Comfortable with how much you have saved for retirement? Comfort is one thing, reality another, and boomers may be running of time to work on the financial quality of post-work life.

A recent study from the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) surveyed 803 baby boomers ages 52 to 68 on expectations for retirement. I was shocked that the overall “economic satisfaction” for boomers dropped to a five-year low of 48%. I assume that the economic satisfaction they refer to equates to a financial comfort zone: enough savings and income for retirement.

Between 2011 and 2013, the satisfaction levels averaged 77% before falling to 65% in 2014. The numbers tanked 17 more percentage points this year, meaning that over half of America’s boomers are dissatisfied with their financial situation as they either prepare for or enter retirement.

Looking further, I found a glaring reason behind such gloom: As of this year, only five out of 10 boomer retirees surveyed have any savings, planning instead to rely completely on government benefits, pension income or both. About a third (34%) of respondents have $100,000 or more saved; only 19% maintain $250,000 or more saved for retirement.

According to my research for my book You Can Retire Sooner Than You Think, the tipping point for my happy retirees was $500,000 in liquid net worth (aka, retirement savings). Clearly, only a small fraction of boomers are at that point.

With such dismal nest eggs, what do all these retirees plan on for cash flow in the golden years? According to the IRI’s report, as of this year, half the boomers surveyed cited Social Security as a major expected source of income during retirement. Perhaps that’s why Get What’s Yours, a book on maximizing Social Security checks, holds a top spot on Amazon for retirement books.

While these statistics make me anxious, apparently boomers in general still aren’t worried about life after working. The study also gauged boomers’ retirement expectations compared with those of their parents and revealed that almost half those surveyed believed that financially they will be about as well off, even better off, than their parents in the later years.

About half also somehow imagined that enough dollars will remain in their retirement budget for basic expenses and some left over for travel and leisure. This tells me that too many boomers need a reality check.

The survey did contain some good news. The IRI looked into the retirement preparedness of boomers who work with financial advisors versus those who go at it alone. Those who worked with a financial advisor were almost twice as likely to have at least $100,000 saved.

Those who worked with an advisor seem more conscious of retirement savings. Another good rule of thumb I learned from my research: Spend at least five hours a year planning for your future retirement. Rather than guessing, ignoring or hoping your retirement will be better than your parents’, put in the time planning.

Ultimately, boomers need more realistic expectations for post-work life – and, if they don’t like that reality, a strategy to change their future. With that generation as with all others, it’s up to all of us individually to make retirement work.

Follow AdviceIQ on Twitter at @adviceiq

Wes Moss, CFP, is the chief investment strategist for Capital Investment Advisors and a partner at Wela, both in Atlanta. He hosts “Money Matters,” a live financial advice show on Atlanta’s News 95-5 and AM 750 WSB Radio. In 2015 and 2014 Barron’s Magazine named him as one of America’s top 1,200 Financial Advisors. His newly released book, You Can Retire Sooner Than You Think published by McGraw Hill, is available on Amazon, iTunes and at your local bookstore.

Wes writes weekly about personal finance in the “Bargain Hunter Section” for AJC.com, the site of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Wes is also the editor and writer for About.com’s Personal Finance blog. Connect with Wes on Twitter at @WesMoss365 and on Facebook at Wes Moss Money Matters. You can also visit his website, WesMoss.com to learn more about Wes, and take his complimentary Money and Happiness Quiz.

AdviceIQ delivers quality personal finance articles by both financial advisors and AdviceIQ editors. It ranks advisors in your area by specialty, including small businesses, doctors and clients of modest means, for example. Those with the biggest number of clients in a given specialty rank the highest. AdviceIQ also vets ranked advisors so only those with pristine regulatory histories can participate. AdviceIQ was launched Jan. 9, 2012, by veteran Wall Street executives, editors and technologists. Right now, investors may see many advisor rankings, although in some areas only a few are ranked. Check back often as thousands of advisors are undergoing AdviceIQ screening. New advisors appear in rankings daily.

 
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Are you one of the largest generation in American history? Comfortable with how much you have saved for retirement? Comfort is one thing, reality another, and boomers may be running of time to work on the financial quality of post-work life.

A recent study from the Insured Retirement Institute (IRI) surveyed 803 baby boomers ages 52 to 68 on expectations for retirement. I was shocked that the overall “economic satisfaction” for boomers dropped to a five-year low of 48%. I assume that the economic satisfaction they refer to equates to a financial comfort zone: enough savings and income for retirement.

Between 2011 and 2013, the satisfaction levels averaged 77% before falling to 65% in 2014. The numbers tanked 17 more percentage points this year, meaning that over half of America’s boomers are dissatisfied with their financial situation as they either prepare for or enter retirement.

Looking further, I found a glaring reason behind such gloom: As of this year, only five out of 10 boomer retirees surveyed have any savings, planning instead to rely completely on government benefits, pension income or both. About a third (34%) of respondents have $100,000 or more saved; only 19% maintain $250,000 or more saved for retirement.

According to my research for my book You Can Retire Sooner Than You Think, the tipping point for my happy retirees was $500,000 in liquid net worth (aka, retirement savings). Clearly, only a small fraction of boomers are at that point.

With such dismal nest eggs, what do all these retirees plan on for cash flow in the golden years? According to the IRI’s report, as of this year, half the boomers surveyed cited Social Security as a major expected source of income during retirement. Perhaps that’s why Get What’s Yours, a book on maximizing Social Security checks, holds a top spot on Amazon for retirement books.

While these statistics make me anxious, apparently boomers in general still aren’t worried about life after working. The study also gauged boomers’ retirement expectations compared with those of their parents and revealed that almost half those surveyed believed that financially they will be about as well off, even better off, than their parents in the later years.

About half also somehow imagined that enough dollars will remain in their retirement budget for basic expenses and some left over for travel and leisure. This tells me that too many boomers need a reality check.

The survey did contain some good news. The IRI looked into the retirement preparedness of boomers who work with financial advisors versus those who go at it alone. Those who worked with a financial advisor were almost twice as likely to have at least $100,000 saved.

Those who worked with an advisor seem more conscious of retirement savings. Another good rule of thumb I learned from my research: Spend at least five hours a year planning for your future retirement. Rather than guessing, ignoring or hoping your retirement will be better than your parents’, put in the time planning.

Ultimately, boomers need more realistic expectations for post-work life – and, if they don’t like that reality, a strategy to change their future. With that generation as with all others, it’s up to all of us individually to make retirement work.

Follow AdviceIQ on Twitter at @adviceiq

Wes Moss, CFP, is the chief investment strategist for Capital Investment Advisors and a partner at Wela, both in Atlanta. He hosts “Money Matters,” a live financial advice show on Atlanta’s News 95-5 and AM 750 WSB Radio. In 2015 and 2014 Barron’s Magazine named him as one of America’s top 1,200 Financial Advisors. His newly released book, You Can Retire Sooner Than You Think published by McGraw Hill, is available on Amazon, iTunes and at your local bookstore.

Wes writes weekly about personal finance in the “Bargain Hunter Section” for AJC.com, the site of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Wes is also the editor and writer for About.com’s Personal Finance blog. Connect with Wes on Twitter at @WesMoss365 and on Facebook at Wes Moss Money Matters. You can also visit his website, WesMoss.com to learn more about Wes, and take his complimentary Money and Happiness Quiz.

AdviceIQ delivers quality personal finance articles by both financial advisors and AdviceIQ editors. It ranks advisors in your area by specialty, including small businesses, doctors and clients of modest means, for example. Those with the biggest number of clients in a given specialty rank the highest. AdviceIQ also vets ranked advisors so only those with pristine regulatory histories can participate. AdviceIQ was launched Jan. 9, 2012, by veteran Wall Street executives, editors and technologists. Right now, investors may see many advisor rankings, although in some areas only a few are ranked. Check back often as thousands of advisors are undergoing AdviceIQ screening. New advisors appear in rankings daily.

 
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Long-distance friendship inspires children’s book http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/long-distance-friendship-inspires-childrens-book/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/long-distance-friendship-inspires-childrens-book/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 18:40:05 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150220 “Noelia’s Garden”, released this month, follows the exploits of the titular protagonist named after a friend of author Michelle Fitzpatrick. The inspiration for the character, Noelia Juarez, said she, herself, was inspired by the book, too. (Submitted image)
“Noelia’s Garden”, released this month, follows the exploits of the titular protagonist named after a friend of author Michelle Fitzpatrick. The inspiration for the character, Noelia Juarez, said she, herself, was inspired31 by the book, too. (Submitted image)

A friendship that began at flight attendant school has become the inspiration for the debut children’s book of area resident Michelle Fitzpatrick.

Released nationwide this month, “Noelia’s Garden” follows the supernatural adventures of the titular lead character as she investigates the orbs of light that have been appearing in the gardens of her community.

That character has a real-life counterpart living in Yuma, Ariz., who couldn’t be more pleased with the honor as she continues her

friendship with Fitzpatrick, who lived in Richfield until recently moving to Bloomington.

“I have never bragged about anything as much,” said Noelia Juarez, who met Fitzpatrick as the two attended a flight attendant training course for American Airlines in Dallas, Texas.

Michelle Fitzpatrick, right, honored her friend Noelia Juarez, left, by naming the titular character of her debut children’s book, “Noelia’s Garden,” after her. The two met in flight attendant school in 2013 as they underwent major transitions in their lives, and have kept in touch ever since. (Submitted photo)
Michelle Fitzpatrick, right, honored her friend Noelia Juarez, left, by naming the titular character of her debut children’s book, “Noelia’s Garden,” after her. The two met in flight attendant school in 2013 as they underwent major transitions in their lives, and have kept in touch ever since. (Submitted photo)

Fitzpatrick, who said she has six more children’s books written and ready to be published, began writing stories about six years ago after losing her job as a contract worker at a VA hospital.

“I had lost my job and trying to keep from going through a depression mode,” she said. “I just started to write and garden.”

Then in 2013, Fitzpatrick, now 45, met Juarez, now 29, and the two hit it off.
“She was such a sweetheart,”

Fitzpatrick said. “I was like, ‘You know what, I’m gonna name my next
children’s book Noelia’s Garden.”

Fitzpatrick said she remembered her new friend mentioned gardening while growing up, so that fit. But it was something Juarez doesn’t remember telling the author that she took as a sign that the name-drop was more than a token gesture.

Fitzpatrick included in her story a boy companion for the fictional Noelia, which struck a chord with the real-life Noelia.

“When I saw the little guy friend in there I was almost in tears, because I don’t remember telling her about my little brother,” Juarez said.

The jolt came at a time when Juarez was still coming to terms with the death of her brother, Miguel Angel Juarez, who was one year her junior when a car accident took his life at the age of 16.

It was a school morning, Juarez remembers. She was late to class so she borrowed her brother’s car; doing so wasn’t an unusual occurrence. He wasn’t due to school until later in the day, and he could still take the bus anyway, she thought.

Instead of taking the bus, Miguel Juarez got a fateful ride.

“He was my partner in life,” his sister said.

The loss put her in self-described “self-destruct mode.”

Juarez was still reconciling with the tragedy, thinking how things would be so different if she just hadn’t borrowed that car, when she met Fitzpatrick. Juarez was also in the middle of a divorce and getting interested in meditation and metaphysics when she met the author of a book that seemed to thematically align with her new interests.

“It was all just perfect timing,” Juarez said.

Beginning a new chapter of her life, Juarez took the book’s subject matter and the inclusion of a character she links to her brother as “a sign that you’re
going in the right direction.”

“She kind of inspired me,” Juarez said of Fitzpatrick.

The pair keeps in touch weekly as Juarez regales Fitzpatrick with stories of her trips around the world, according to the author.

“We write really long texts to each other or call each other,” Juarez said.

Fitzpatrick has three more sources of inspiration for “Noelia’s Garden” – her young grandchildren.

“I wanted to have something for them to read and feel good about,”
Fitzpatrick said.

She hopes her grandchildren, between the ages of 3 and 6, will themselves be inspired to advocate for reading as they grow up. She said she also wanted to make them proud, to give them something “where they could say, ‘Grandmother, she wrote this.’”

The process of getting published was not as arduous as one might expect, Fitzpatrick said. She submitted several stories to the publisher, Tate Publishing.

“And they’re like, ‘Which ones do you want to get published first?’” Fitzpatrick recounted. “I was like, ‘Are you serious?’”

Fitzpatrick said she didn’t end up pursuing a career as a flight attendant and is solely focusing on writing now. As she awaits the publishing of her next work, “Mookie and the Wormhole,” she can savor her long-distance friendship and the book it helped inspire.

“The characters,” Fitzpatrick said, “are alive now.”

Contact Andrew Wig at andrew.wig@ecm-inc.com or follow him on Twitter
@RISunCurrent.

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Kathleen Berniece (Brown) Fairbrother http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/kathleen-berniece-brown-fairbrother/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/kathleen-berniece-brown-fairbrother/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 18:17:57 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150419 Kathleen   Berniece  (Brown) Fairbrother

8/24/1929-7/20/2015

Kathleen Fairbrother, age 85, of Bloomington, passed away peacefully after 15 challenging years living with Alzheimer's.
Born to Stephen Leo and Ann Veronica (Klug) Brown, she married her high school sweetheart, Vern Jay Fairbrother (d. 12/19/14) in 1951. They were married for 63 years. Kathleen was an avid learner and intrepid traveler. She was a wonderful amateur photographer and her zest for life, art, music, opera, theater and nature were enjoyed until two months before she passed. She learned to play tennis at 40, took a multitude of classes at Normandale Community College and St. Catherine University into her 70s, was president of her Toastmasters club, volunteered to help dyslexic children learn to read, and she loved to sing, dance, and sew. She worked part-time at Gabbert's for 25 years until she retired at 75. She traveled and photographed dozens of countries throughout the world. She loved learning about new cultures and used her great smile to break language barriers.
She is survived by daughters Carol Fairbrother, Diane Miller (Kevin Kast), Eileen Fairbrother (Joel Pitman), Connie Roles and Paula Fairbrother; eight grandchildren and 10 great-grandchildren.
Funeral services and Celebration of Life will be in October 2015. Kathleen and Vern will be interred together at Fort Snelling Cemetery. Memorials preferred to the Alzheimer's Association, PBS, or your local theater. For more information on the funeral and sending remembrances for the celebration in October, email: KathleenCelebration@yahoo.com.

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Your Mid-Year $$ Checkup http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/your-mid-year-checkup/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/your-mid-year-checkup/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 16:52:49 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?guid=41a8ac18ef2d6354e8c7fb89e7abea86 This time of year marks a great moment to slow down and look at your financial progress in 2015. How are you tracking against goals you set in January, and do you have an opportunity to save more, give to a cause or reduce this year’s taxes? Examine financial goals you set earlier this year, focusing on each major aspect of your money plan.

Here are a few tips:

Review 401(k) contributions. The limit to what you can kick in to your workplace retirement plan increased to $18,000 this year ($24,000 if you’re older than 50). Look at your year-to-date numbers to make sure you remain on track to maximize contributions.

In addition to helping increase your account balance, maxing out contributions can also reduce your taxable income (see below).

Boost savings. With less than half a year to go, review your current savings and consider boosting your recurring contribution even a small amount. And true, while summer can drain your finances – vacation trips, kids out of school, additional entertainment – challenge yourself to spend less and save more.

Your tactic might be as simple as buying one fewer cups of coffee a day or opting for a home-cooked meal instead of an expensive dinner out.

Cut more fees. Maybe you already examined all your pesky credit card and bank fees earlier this year. Note: Banks change rules often, and you may learn that you now shell out for a new or hidden fee on something previously free. Every fee you pay means less money in your pocket.

See how many fees you can reduce or eliminate before the end of the year; consider re-investing those rescued dollars in a savings or retirement account.

Remember taxes. The next filing date for most of us is still months off, so we aren’t quite ready to talk in detail about taxes yet. You should still put yourself in the best financial position now for when the day comes.

Get (or remain) in touch with your certified public accountant to discuss your 2015 estimate. You still have plenty of time left in the year to mitigate tax consequences – almost certainly resulting in a healthier bottom line next year. Your possible moves include adjusting how much tax you have withheld from your paycheck or how much you contribute to your workplace retirement plan.

Give to others. Speaking of what you owe the government, charitable giving makes a great way to minimize taxes and contribute to your favorite cause; Americans gave a total of $358 billion to charity last year, up more than 7% from 2013, according to National Philanthropic Trust. You may also want to check with your employer about a program for matching donations.

Get to know your investments again. While I am a big proponent of the buy-and-hold strategy and letting investments be, now may be a good time to keenly re-examine your portfolio with an eye to determining your appetite for risk.

How much risk do you need to take to reach your financial goals? You might find out that although you can tolerate – even enjoy – intense risk, you don’t need to take it.

Even if you’re not completely on track today, there’s still plenty of 2015 left to focus on financial goals.

Follow AdviceIQ on Twitter at @adviceiq.

Taylor Schulte, CFP, is founder and chief executive officer of Define Financial in San Diego, responsible for company’s vision, strategy and execution. He specializes in helping individuals, families and small business achieve their financial goals, from investment management, financial and retirement planning to charitable giving, college planning and insurance services. While he works with a wide range of clients, Schulte has a keen understanding of the millennial generation’s financial needs and a progressive, forward-thinking approach. Schulte was recently honored with the 2015 Five Star Wealth Manager Award, a recognition limited to fewer than one in 20 wealth managers in San Diego. He also regularly contributes to the San Diego Downtown News.

AdviceIQ delivers quality personal finance articles by both financial advisors and AdviceIQ editors. It ranks advisors in your area by specialty, including small businesses, doctors and clients of modest means, for example. Those with the biggest number of clients in a given specialty rank the highest. AdviceIQ also vets ranked advisors so only those with pristine regulatory histories can participate. AdviceIQ was launched Jan. 9, 2012, by veteran Wall Street executives, editors and technologists. Right now, investors may see many advisor rankings, although in some areas only a few are ranked. Check back often as thousands of advisors are undergoing AdviceIQ screening. New advisors appear in rankings daily.

]]>
This time of year marks a great moment to slow down and look at your financial progress in 2015. How are you tracking against goals you set in January, and do you have an opportunity to save more, give to a cause or reduce this year’s taxes? Examine financial goals you set earlier this year, focusing on each major aspect of your money plan.

Here are a few tips:

Review 401(k) contributions. The limit to what you can kick in to your workplace retirement plan increased to $18,000 this year ($24,000 if you’re older than 50). Look at your year-to-date numbers to make sure you remain on track to maximize contributions.

In addition to helping increase your account balance, maxing out contributions can also reduce your taxable income (see below).

Boost savings. With less than half a year to go, review your current savings and consider boosting your recurring contribution even a small amount. And true, while summer can drain your finances – vacation trips, kids out of school, additional entertainment – challenge yourself to spend less and save more.

Your tactic might be as simple as buying one fewer cups of coffee a day or opting for a home-cooked meal instead of an expensive dinner out.

Cut more fees. Maybe you already examined all your pesky credit card and bank fees earlier this year. Note: Banks change rules often, and you may learn that you now shell out for a new or hidden fee on something previously free. Every fee you pay means less money in your pocket.

See how many fees you can reduce or eliminate before the end of the year; consider re-investing those rescued dollars in a savings or retirement account.

Remember taxes. The next filing date for most of us is still months off, so we aren’t quite ready to talk in detail about taxes yet. You should still put yourself in the best financial position now for when the day comes.

Get (or remain) in touch with your certified public accountant to discuss your 2015 estimate. You still have plenty of time left in the year to mitigate tax consequences – almost certainly resulting in a healthier bottom line next year. Your possible moves include adjusting how much tax you have withheld from your paycheck or how much you contribute to your workplace retirement plan.

Give to others. Speaking of what you owe the government, charitable giving makes a great way to minimize taxes and contribute to your favorite cause; Americans gave a total of $358 billion to charity last year, up more than 7% from 2013, according to National Philanthropic Trust. You may also want to check with your employer about a program for matching donations.

Get to know your investments again. While I am a big proponent of the buy-and-hold strategy and letting investments be, now may be a good time to keenly re-examine your portfolio with an eye to determining your appetite for risk.

How much risk do you need to take to reach your financial goals? You might find out that although you can tolerate – even enjoy – intense risk, you don’t need to take it.

Even if you’re not completely on track today, there’s still plenty of 2015 left to focus on financial goals.

Follow AdviceIQ on Twitter at @adviceiq.

Taylor Schulte, CFP, is founder and chief executive officer of Define Financial in San Diego, responsible for company’s vision, strategy and execution. He specializes in helping individuals, families and small business achieve their financial goals, from investment management, financial and retirement planning to charitable giving, college planning and insurance services. While he works with a wide range of clients, Schulte has a keen understanding of the millennial generation’s financial needs and a progressive, forward-thinking approach. Schulte was recently honored with the 2015 Five Star Wealth Manager Award, a recognition limited to fewer than one in 20 wealth managers in San Diego. He also regularly contributes to the San Diego Downtown News.

AdviceIQ delivers quality personal finance articles by both financial advisors and AdviceIQ editors. It ranks advisors in your area by specialty, including small businesses, doctors and clients of modest means, for example. Those with the biggest number of clients in a given specialty rank the highest. AdviceIQ also vets ranked advisors so only those with pristine regulatory histories can participate. AdviceIQ was launched Jan. 9, 2012, by veteran Wall Street executives, editors and technologists. Right now, investors may see many advisor rankings, although in some areas only a few are ranked. Check back often as thousands of advisors are undergoing AdviceIQ screening. New advisors appear in rankings daily.

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Eden Prairie Police respond to burglaries July 17-20 http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/eden-prairie-police-respond-to-burglaries-july-17-20/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/eden-prairie-police-respond-to-burglaries-july-17-20/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 16:39:12 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150409 For the week of July 17-24, the police department responded to: 7 DWIs, 24 thefts, 100 public assist calls, 10 motor vehicle accidents with property damage, 2 business burglary reports and 4 burglary of a dwelling reports.

July 20 – A business burglary took place between 5:15 p.m. July 20 and 7:45 a.m. July 21 at the State Farm Insurance office in Eden Prairie, 16315 Terrey Pine Drive, Suite 200. The victim was a male employee from Eden Prairie. According to the report, the victim locked the door when he left July 20. Upon returning to the office, the victim struggled getting the key into the door of Suite 200. The victim reported that all the filing cabinets and the desk drawers were rummaged through, and one drawer was left on top of his desk. A grey Bose Wave Radio III was missing.

July 20 – Officers responded to another report of a business burglary at the same location between 6:30 p.m. July 20 and 7:45 a.m. July 21 at Suite 300, which is occupied by Weickert Realtors. The victim was a 59-year-old male employee from Victoria. According to the report, an officer contacted the owner, and the owners said the door was locked at 6:30 p.m. July 20. When officers scanned the office, it was discovered that an HP Pavillion laptop was stolen, and a locked black filing cabinet had been forced open.

July 17 – A burglary of a dwelling occurred between 3:30-8 p.m. July 17 at the 12000 block of Porcupine Court in Eden Prairie. The victim was a 40-year-old female from Eden Prairie. According to the report, the victim moved her son’s bike from one place to another in the garage while both cars were in the driveway and the garage door was open. The victim later noticed that the bike was missing, The family was home during the time of the burglary. The bike is a white and blue Trek 220 Boy’s bike.

July 20 – A burglary of a dwelling occurred between 3-10 p.m. July 20 at the 11000 block of Westwind Drive in Eden Prairie. The victims are a 43-year-old female, 14-year-old male, 12-year-old male, 8-year-old female, 5-year-old female and a 4-year-old female. All victims are from Eden Prairie. According to the report, the 43-year-old female left home at 8 a.m. July 20 when her sister arrived to watch the kids. She then returned at 11 a.m. and left for work at 3 p.m. when the children were taken to day care. Because the victim previously misplaced the key to the front door deadbolt, she could not lock the door. When she returned at 10 p.m., she noticed that a black hardshell suitcase kept under the bed was missing. The suitcase contained greencards for herself and her children, Social Security cards for her children, her work permit, an I-94 form, her child’s birth certificate, a gold bracelet valued at $500 and gold earrings valued at $90. There were no signs of forced entry.

July 18 – A burglary of a dwelling occurred between 7:30 a.m. July 18 and 9 a.m. July 19 at the 8000 block of Deer Path. The victims were a 74-year-old female from Eden Prairie and a 75-year-old male from Eden Prairie. According to the report, the victims’ cars were parked in the garage, and the garage door was left open from 7:15 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. July 18 and closed overnight. The door was opened again on the morning of July 19. The victims noticed that both vehicles had been rummaged through. In one vehicle, the glove box was left open and two pairs of sunglasses were missing. In the other vehicle, a pair of Coach sunglasses and the case were missing along with a pair of Raplh Lauren sunglasses and the case. A black plastic credit card case and its contents were also missing. There were no signs of forced entry. The female victim received the Coach and Ralph Lauren sunglasses back along with a pair of headphones she identified as hers when the suspect was arrested July 19 for motor vehicle tampering at the 8000 block of Neill Lake Road. The suspect is a 22-year-old male from Eden Prairie.

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Relay for Life brings communities together in Eden Prairie http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/relay-for-life-brings-communities-together-in-eden-prairie/ http://current.mnsun.com/2015/07/relay-for-life-brings-communities-together-in-eden-prairie/#comments Fri, 31 Jul 2015 16:18:49 +0000 http://current.mnsun.com/?p=150394 Volunteers and cancer survivors from the Bloomington, Eden Prairie, Richfield, Hopkins and Minnetonka communities joined together at the first annual Relay For Life of Greater Minneapolis July 24-25 at Eden Prairie High School.

Cancer survivors walk the first lap at the Greater Minneapolis Relay For Life event July 24 at Eden Prairie High School. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)
Cancer survivors walk the first lap at the Greater Minneapolis Relay For Life event July 24 at Eden Prairie High School. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)

From 6 p.m. Friday to 6 a.m. Saturday, 29 teams walked the track in shifts to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

According to Jen Anderson, community manager for Relay For Life, the event welcomed 40 cancer survivors and about 500 participants.

Reps. Erik Paulsen and Yvonne Selcer also made appearances at the event. Paulsen represents Minnesota’s 3rd district in the U.S. House of Representatives, and Selcer represents District 48A in the Minnesota House of Representatives.

“This was my first Relay event,” Selcer said, “and after having cancer and surgery in May, I now understand what it’s like.”

Selcer said her favorite part of the event was joining together with other survivors and hearing their stories.

Paulsen took time to speak about the 21st Century Cures Act which recently passed in the House. The act aims to bring the regulatory structure up to date with advances to medical science and technology.

Paulsen led a provision establishing a program that allows for patients to have access to medical device treatments sooner.

Congressman Erik Paulsen speaks to 2015 Relay For Life participants during the opening ceremony July 24. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)
Congressman Erik Paulsen speaks to 2015 Relay For Life participants during the opening ceremony July 24. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)

“It’s so hard to find people who are not impacted by cancer,” Paulsen said, “and from the federal and local perspective, the passing of this act is great news.”

According to Lindsey Kaufmann, co-chair for the 2015 Greater Minneapolis Relay For Life, this year’s fundraising goal is $90,000 with donations accepted online until Aug. 31. The organization has raised $71,000 so far.

The event also featured special attractions such as live music by All The Islands, Zumba sessions, a three-legged race, spaghetti eating contest, musical chairs, a dance party and more.

While the event was a first for many, it also welcomed several Relay veterans.
Minnetonka residents Debi and Larry Hruby have been participating in the event for years, according to Debi.

“My husband and I both lost our spouses to cancer, and now he is walking Relay as a survivor,” Debi said. “We have too much experience with cancer in our lives.”

This year’s Honorary Survivor was Tommy Costello, a 2015 graduate of Chaska High School. Costello told his story of being diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma in October 2012 and declared in remission in February 2013.

Honorary Survivor Tommy Costello speaks to the crowd of Relay For Life during the opening ceremony July 24 at Eden Prairie High School. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)
Honorary Survivor Tommy Costello speaks to the crowd of Relay For Life during the opening ceremony July 24 at Eden Prairie High School. (Sun Current staff photo by Michelle Doeden)

“I kept thinking ‘Why did this happen to me? This is so unfair,’” he said in his speech. Costello later went on to tell the story of a young girl with cancer whom he met during his time in Chemotherapy. While the little girl did not survive, Costello said he was struck by her strength and bravery.

“No matter what you are going through, there is always someone going through something worse,” Costello said.

Contact Michelle Doeden at michelle.doeden@ecm-inc.com

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