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Given the choice, most of us want to stay in our homes. Sometimes, people need help to remain at home. That's where Always Best Care Senior Services comes in.

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“Words cannot express how grateful we are for your companies services. We know it can be difficult to schedule around changing situations. We appreciate your flexibility and the care and compassion shown for my mother. A special thanks to your team.”

Marci
 In-Home Care Lake Elmo, MN

How does In-home Senior Care in Lake Elmo, MN work?

Home is where the heart is. While that saying can sound a tad cliche, it's especially true for many seniors living in America. When given a choice, older adults most often prefer to grow older at home. An AARP study found that three out of four adults over the age of 50 want to stay in their homes and communities as they age. When you begin to think about why, it makes sense. Home offers a sense of security, comfort, and familiarity.

The truth is, as we age, we begin to rely on others for help. When a family is too busy or lives too far away to fulfill this role, in-home senior care is often the best solution. Home care services allow seniors to enjoy personal independence while also receiving trustworthy assistance from a trained caregiver.

At Always Best Care, we offer a comprehensive range of home care services to help seniors stay healthy while they get the help they need to remain independent. As your senior loved one ages, giving them the gift of senior care is one of the best ways to show your love, even if you live far away.

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 Senior Care Lake Elmo, MN

Aging in Place: The Preferred Choice for Most Seniors

While it's true that some seniors have complicated medical needs that prevent them from staying at home, aging in place is often the best arrangement for seniors and their families. With a trusted caregiver, seniors have the opportunity to live with a sense of dignity and do so as they see fit.

In-home care makes it possible for millions of seniors to age in place every year. Rather than moving to a unfamiliar assisted living community, seniors have the chance to stay at home where they feel the happiest and most comfortable.

Here are just a few of the reasons why older men and women prefer to age at home:

Comfort
Comfort

How much does a senior's home truly mean to them? A study published by the American Society on Aging found that more than half of seniors say their home's emotional value means more than how much their home is worth in monetary value. It stands to reason, that a senior's home is where they want to grow old. With the help of elderly care in Lake Elmo, MN, seniors don't have to age in a sterilized care facility. Instead, they can age gracefully in the place they want to be most: their home. In contrast, seniors who move to a long-term care facility must adapt to new environments, new people, and new systems that the facility implements. At this stage in life, this kind of drastic change can be more harmful than helpful.

Healthy Living
Healthy Living

Institutional care facilities like nursing homes often put large groups of people together to live in one location. On any given day, dozens of staff members and caregivers run in and out of these facilities. Being around so many new people in a relatively small living environment can be dangerous for a seniors' health and wellbeing. When you consider that thousands of seniors passed away in nursing homes during the COVID-19 pandemic, opting for in-home care is often a safer, healthier choice for seniors. Aging in place has been shown to improve seniors' quality of life, which helps boost physical health and also helps insulate them from viral and bacterial risks found in elderly living facilities.

Independence
Independence

For many seniors, the ability to live independently with assistance from a caregiver is a priceless option. With in-home care, seniors experience a higher level of independence and freedom - much more so than in other settings like an assisted living community. When a senior has the chance to age in place, they get to live life on their own terms, inside the house that they helped make into a home. More independence means more control over their personal lives, too, which leads to increased levels of fulfillment, happiness, and personal gratification. Over time, these positive feelings can manifest into a healthier, longer life.

Cost and Convenience
Cost and Convenience

More independence, a healthier life, and increased comfort are only a few benefits of aging in place. You have to take into consideration the role of cost and convenience. Simply put, it's usually easier to help seniors age in place than it is to move them into an institutional care facility. In-home care services from Always Best Care, for instance, can be less expensive than long-term solutions, which can cost upwards of six figures per year. To make matters worse, many residential care facilities are reluctant to accept long-term care insurance and other types of payment assistance.

With Always Best Care's home care services, seniors and their families have a greater level of control over their care plans. In-home care in Lake Elmo, MN gives seniors the chance to form a bond with a trusted caregiver and also receive unmatched care that is catered to their needs. In long-term care facilities, seniors and their loved ones have much less control over their care plan and have less of a say in who provides their care.

Empowers Seniors

Affordable Care Plans

In-home care is a valuable resource that empowers seniors to age in place on their own terms. However, a big concern for many families and their loved ones is how much in-home care costs. If you're worried that in-home care is too expensive, you may be pleasantly surprised to learn that it is one of the most affordable senior care arrangements available.

Typically, hiring an Always Best Care in-home caregiver for a few hours a week is more affordable than sending your loved one to a long-term care facility. This is true even for seniors with more complex care needs.

At Always Best Care, we will work closely with you and your family to develop a Care Plan that not only meets your care needs, but your budget requirements, too. Once we discover the level of care that you or your senior need, we develop an in-home care plan that you can afford.

In addition to our flexible care options, families should also consider the following resources to help offset potential home care costs:

Veteran's Benefits
Veteran's Benefits

Aid and Attendance benefits through military service can cover a portion of the costs associated with in-home care for veterans and their spouses.

Long-Term Care Insurance
Long-Term Care Insurance

Many senior care services like in-home care are included in long-term care insurance options. Research different long-term care solutions to find a plan that provides coverage for senior care.

Private Insurance
Private Insurance

Home care can be included as part of a senior's private insurance plan. Read over your loved one's insurance policy carefully or speak with their insurance provider to determine if in-home care is covered.

Life Insurance
Life Insurance

Depending on the life insurance plan, you may be able to apply your policy toward long-term care. You may be able to use long-term-care coverage to help pay for in-home elderly care.


Respite Care Lake Elmo, MN

During your Care Plan consultation with Always Best Care, your Care Coordinator will speak with you about in-home care costs and what options there may be to help meet your budget needs.

Compassionate Care. Trusted Caregivers

When you or your senior loved one needs assistance managing daily tasks at home, finding a qualified caregiver can be challenging. It takes a special kind of person to provide reliable care for your senior loved one. However, a caregiver's role involves more than meal preparation and medication reminders. Many seniors rely on their caregivers for companionship, too.

Our companion care services give seniors the chance to socialize in a safe environment and engage in activities at home. These important efforts boost morale and provide much-needed relief from repetitive daily routines. A one-on-one, engaging conversation can sharpen seniors' minds and give them something in which to be excited.

At Always Best Care, we only hire care providers that we would trust to care for our own loved ones. Our senior caregivers in Lake Elmo,MN understand how important it is to listen and communicate with their seniors. A seemingly small interaction, like a short hug goodbye, can make a major difference in a senior's day. Instead of battling against feelings of isolation, seniors begin to look forward to seeing their caregiver each week.

Understanding the nuances of senior care is just one of the reasons why our care providers are so great at their job.

Unlike some senior care companies, our caregivers must undergo extensive training before they work for Always Best Care. In addition, our caregivers receive ongoing training throughout the year. This training ensures that their standard of care matches up to the high standards we've come to expect. During this training, they will brush up on their communication skills, safety awareness, and symptom spotting. That way, your loved one receives the highest level of non-medical home care from day one.

 Caregivers Lake Elmo, MN

Taking the First Step with Always Best Care

The first step in getting quality in-home care starts with a personal consultation with an experienced Care Coordinator. This initial consultation is crucial for our team to learn more about you or your elderly loved one to discover the level of care required. Topics of this consultation typically include:

An assessment of your senior loved one

01

An in-depth discussion of the needs of your senior loved one to remain in their own home

02

Reviewing a detailed Care Plan that will meet your senior loved one's needs

03

Our caregivers are trained to spot changes that clients exhibit, like mental and physical decline. As your trusted senior care company, we will constantly assess and update your Care Plan to meet any new emotional, intellectual, physical, and emotional needs.

If you have never considered in-home care before, we understand that you and your family may have concerns about your Care Plan and its Care Coordinator. To help give you peace of mind, know that every team member and caregiver must undergo comprehensive training before being assigned to a Care Plan.

When you're ready, we encourage you to contact your local Always Best Care representative to set up a Care Consultation. Our Care Coordinators would be happy to meet with you in person to get to know you better, discuss your needs, and help put together a personalized Care Plan specific to your needs.

Latest News in Lake Elmo, MN

Post-it power: Lake Elmo teacher lifts student with supportive messages

When Maggie Helwig opened her youngest son’s locker at Lake Elmo Elementary School, she didn’t know what to expect.Maybe a forgotten homework assignment, candy wrappers, a collection of Tupperware containers or “a bunch of garbage and old food,” she said.Instead, the locker was papered with a collection of colorful Post-it note messages that her son Finn, 10, has received from his fourth-grade teacher, Pam Mohs.The colorful notes, which Finn had stuck to the sides, back and roof of the locker, are...

When Maggie Helwig opened her youngest son’s locker at Lake Elmo Elementary School, she didn’t know what to expect.

Maybe a forgotten homework assignment, candy wrappers, a collection of Tupperware containers or “a bunch of garbage and old food,” she said.

Instead, the locker was papered with a collection of colorful Post-it note messages that her son Finn, 10, has received from his fourth-grade teacher, Pam Mohs.

The colorful notes, which Finn had stuck to the sides, back and roof of the locker, are handwritten messages of love and support for Finn, who has struggled in school since kindergarten, Helwig said.

“Great job in reading yesterday!” read one. “You worked hard on Friday afternoon!” read another.

“I didn’t even know this was happening,” Helwig said. “He never mentioned it. I cried when I saw them.”

The notes, she said, are a reminder of the power of a teacher’s words and proof that even a simple gesture can have a profound impact. “It’s such a little something, but it just fills up his love tank every single day,” Helwig said.

‘Makes me want to work harder’

When asked to pick a favorite Post-it, Finn pointed to a yellow one he stuck on the right-hand side of his locker just the other day. “You had such a perfect day yesterday! Do it again today!” it reads.

“I like this one, too,” he said, pointing to a note that read “I want you to have a great day. Work hard. Do your job. Be kind. Follow expectations. You’ve got this.” “I actually like all of them,” he said.

Finn’s parents, Jed and Maggie Helwig, told Mohs during parent/teacher conferences last fall that Finn responds to positive feedback. Mohs decided to start leaving the notes in his locker overnight so he would see one when he got to school in the morning.

“I like how they make me feel,” Finn said Tuesday. “They make me feel good, really good, and it makes me want to work harder, so then I can have a better day than what I had the other day.”

Finn has about 30 of them posted in his locker; the others are at his house in a box for safekeeping, he said.

Mohs said she noticed an immediate change in Finn’s behavior once she started leaving the notes.

“I saw that it was working, and I felt like I was making a connection with him, so I just kept it up,” Mohs said. “He sometimes struggles with staying positive and getting stuff done. If he doesn’t want to do something, he won’t do something, but when he has a positive attitude, he does so well.”

Before being assigned to Ms. Mohs’s fourth-grade class, Finn often complained about having to go to school, Maggie Helwig said. “He disliked it. I mean, he really disliked it,” she said. “Many mornings were spent arguing about whether he had to go.”

But Mohs understands that Finn’s “tank is filled” by positive praise, Helwig said. “He soaks it up like a sponge. I mean, he craves it. The number of arguments about going to school have significantly decreased. They’re almost non-existent now.”

Veteran teacher

Mohs, a 25-year teaching veteran, got to know Finn when he was in the third grade, when he would sometimes come to her classroom for a “reset,” she said. “I saw that he had a twinkle in his eye, and he would just smile sometimes. I just saw such a great kid, but he wasn’t really showing how great he was.”

Back in December, Finn struggled at school for a few days, she said. When he got back on track, Mohs posted this note: “Finn is back!”

Finn said he loves that one, too.

“He had a little bump in the road, a hard couple of days, but he turned it around,” Mohs said. “I wanted him to know how happy I was that Finn was back and doing a great job.”

A note last week thanked Finn for helping during gym class. The students are learning how to play baseball – one of Finn’s favorite sports – and Finn has been a great helper, she said. “He’s showing people how to use the bat and really encouraging them.”

Another note posted last week praised him for getting caught up on all his work.

“He got a little bit behind on some work, but he put his mind to it and was able to get through it,” she said. “Sometimes it’s hard to get motivated, especially when you don’t want to do something or you think it’s boring — right, Finn? Sometimes the things we make them do are not always the most fun things, but he got it done.”

Finn said he knows that Ms. Mohs will always rank as one of his favorite teachers.

“She’s just a really good math teacher, and she’s really nice,” he said. “It’s fun to come to school when she’s there.”

A good teacher like Mohs should be celebrated, Maggie Helwig said. She had shared a post on the Stillwater Area Public Schools Facebook page about the Post-it notes left for Finn.

“I want her to get the accolades she deserves,” she said. “Being a teacher is so emotional and heart-wrenching, and I just want her to be recognized.”

Stillwater schools explore bond referendum, replacing Lake Elmo and Bayport buildings

With more than 1,000 students expected to enter Stillwater Area Public Schools in the next 10 years, school officials are considering a possible bond referendum in the fall to add capacity at the elementary and middle school levels and address issues in buildings that are more than 100 years old.That could mean major changes at schools in the central and southern part of the district, where most of the growth is occurring.Schools that are already near capacity and are projected to be over capacity in the coming years include: A...

With more than 1,000 students expected to enter Stillwater Area Public Schools in the next 10 years, school officials are considering a possible bond referendum in the fall to add capacity at the elementary and middle school levels and address issues in buildings that are more than 100 years old.

That could mean major changes at schools in the central and southern part of the district, where most of the growth is occurring.

Schools that are already near capacity and are projected to be over capacity in the coming years include: Afton-Lakeland Elementary in Lakeland; Andersen Elementary in Bayport, and Lake Elmo Elementary and Oak-Land Middle School in Lake Elmo.

“We are very early in this conversation,” said Carissa Keister, district spokeswoman. “We’re going to spend the next several months talking to our community to problem solve what are some potential solutions and opportunities.”

A recent demographic study showed most of the growth will come from communities like Baytown Township, Lake Elmo, Lakeland and Woodbury, where new homes are already under construction and future development is slated, she said.

The study also showed that birth rates are on the rise in the district; officials expect a 5.6 percent increase in the 4-year-old and younger population in the next five years.

“Part of that is just turnover in existing housing as younger families move in, and part of it is new houses being built,” Keister said. “We’re excited to see more young families moving in, and we can’t wait to welcome their children into our schools. With this growth comes a variety of opportunities — and honestly, a few logistical challenges. We need to increase capacity in our schools, and we are working with our community to determine the best way to do that for our students, families and taxpayers.”

Oldest buildings

Andersen Elementary was built in 1919, and Lake Elmo Elementary was built in 1920. They are the two oldest schools in the district, and there are challenges that come with older buildings, including accessibility issues, according to Keister.

“Buildings weren’t designed 100 years ago like they are today,” she said. “It’s a very different learning environment for our kids.”

District officials have talked for more than a decade about building a new Lake Elmo Elementary School, she said. Andersen Elementary, located in downtown Bayport, is landlocked, and “there is no potential to expand at that location,” she said. “Do we relocate and build a new campus?”

A question on a community survey — presented last week during a school board workshop — asked if participants were aware of the ages of the schools. It also asked if knowing the age of the buildings would “impact (their) support for building new elementary schools in Bayport/Baytown Township and Lake Elmo.”

The district has not purchased any land for a possible new school, Keister said.

Bayport Mayor Michele Hanson said she would push for Andersen to stay at its current location.

“Andersen Elementary needs to stay where it is,” Hanson said. “It is a cornerstone of Bayport and belongs in its center. In fact, I choose to volunteer there because it is only six blocks from my home and I know other local retirees that do the same. Generations of Bayport residents were educated there, and young families move to Bayport in large part because of our thriving and supportive school. It is a place where the community comes together and should remain at its heart.”

Community conversations

According to the recent survey, Keister said, district residents listed five issues as top concerns:

District officials also are exploring adding a gymnasium to Afton-Lakeland Elementary School, she said.

The district is planning a series of community conversations to discuss facilities planning in April, Keister said. The district’s facilities team will meet in April and plans to have a recommendation to the school board in early summer.

“It’s very likely we will have something on the ballot in November for a bond referendum, but all those details are yet to be determined,” she said.

The school board voted in 2016 to close three elementary schools. After the closures of Marine, Withrow and Oak Park elementary schools, parents protested, lawsuits were filed, and board incumbents were challenged in elections.

Said Keister: “We’re taking this slow and engaging with families and residents to hear their ideas, thoughts and concerns. We know the history here, and we recognize how important it is to work together as a community. We’re very early in this process and are taking time to explore options along with the people who will be most directly impacted by future decisions. In the end, it’s about providing the very best learning environments possible for all of our kids — now and into the future.”

Sale of Royal Golf Club canceled; 3M Open leader to become sole owner

The Royal Golf Club in Lake Elmo is no longer for sale.Just weeks before the course was set to be sold, Hollis Cavner, who owned the course with three other partners, decided to back out of a sale deal with a Virginia-based company and buy out his partners to become the club’s sole owner.Cavner is also the executive tournament director for the 3M Open, an annual professional golf tournament held at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine.About a year ago, the club's partners began discussing selling the Royal Golf Club due to pa...

The Royal Golf Club in Lake Elmo is no longer for sale.

Just weeks before the course was set to be sold, Hollis Cavner, who owned the course with three other partners, decided to back out of a sale deal with a Virginia-based company and buy out his partners to become the club’s sole owner.

Cavner is also the executive tournament director for the 3M Open, an annual professional golf tournament held at TPC Twin Cities in Blaine.

About a year ago, the club's partners began discussing selling the Royal Golf Club due to partners moving out of Minnesota, he said. There was immediate national interest in the club, which had an $8 million price tag when it went on the market. Due to non-disclosure agreements, Cavner could not disclose what companies made offers or for how much.

“I just love the thing too much,” said Cavner, who purchased the Tartan Park golf course from Maplewood-based 3M Co. six years ago.

The 18-hole course opened in 2018 after a redevelopment of the former 3M golf course. The public course was designed by golf legends Arnold Palmer and Annika Sörenstam. The Royal Golf Club also features a six-hole short course for youth players.

The first nine holes, known as the Queen’s Nine, were designed by Sörenstam, and the back nine, known as the King’s Nine, was designed by Palmer. The course was one of Sörenstam’s first and Palmer’s last design endeavors, according to Cavner.

“It’s about keeping their dream alive,” Cavner said.

The club is surrounded by a massive residential development, called The Royal Club community, which upon completion will feature more than 290 single-family houses and villas.

Cavner also said he plans to take the course private in the next year or so. Along with that will come upgrades to the clubhouse and amenities like pickleball to make it more family-orientated, Cavner said.

“I want to keep it, and I’m not done with it,” he said.

Golf Courses

USGA men's slope rating

RankPrior RankName / Rank in 2021 (* not ranked)
13Rush Creek Golf Club
21Spring Hill Golf Club
34Blackberry Ridge

View this list

Lake Elmo: Metro area's hottest housing market in 2022

Mortgage rates weren't the only thing homebuyers focused on during 2022.Buyers were obsessed with big houses and big yards, making far-flung suburbs the most popular places in the metro area last year, according to the Star Tribune's seventh annual Hot Housing Index, which tracks the annual increase in sales, prices and other metrics for nearly every city in the metro.By that measure, the hottest city for home buyers last year was also one of the most inconspicuous: Lake Elmo, a second-ring suburb that's a sharp contrast to its...

Mortgage rates weren't the only thing homebuyers focused on during 2022.

Buyers were obsessed with big houses and big yards, making far-flung suburbs the most popular places in the metro area last year, according to the Star Tribune's seventh annual Hot Housing Index, which tracks the annual increase in sales, prices and other metrics for nearly every city in the metro.

By that measure, the hottest city for home buyers last year was also one of the most inconspicuous: Lake Elmo, a second-ring suburb that's a sharp contrast to its livelier next-door neighbor, Woodbury.

An annual series ranking the metro's hottest housing markets

With hundreds of acres of rolling farmland, a regional park and several lakes, Lake Elmo was a magnet for house shoppers on the hunt for a more rural life in the suburbs.

"We didn't want cookie-cutter suburbia — we wanted a property that felt unique," said Jessica Brockshus, who recently moved to Lake Elmo with her husband and three kids. "We love the charming downtown and the small-town feel of Lake Elmo."

That bucolic, laid-back life comes at a cost.

The median price of those Lake Elmo sales last year was $635,000, nearly twice the metro average. On average, houses sold for just over $217 per square foot. That's near the metro average, but a whopping 37% increase compared to the city's five-year average and one of the largest gains in the metro.

Across the Twin Cities region, prices increased the most in several outlying northern suburbs including Princeton, North Branch and Cambridge, which all saw the price per square foot increase more than 40% over the five-year average, according to the index, which is based on data from the Minneapolis Area Realtors.

The least expensive city was Belle Plaine, where the average fell just shy of $159 a square foot. In Wayzata, the most expensive city, houses sold on average for $337 per square foot.

Minneapolis tied with St. Louis Park for the sixth most expensive city at $226 per square foot, just behind Orono, Shorewood and Edina.

Lake Elmo has maintained its rural feel for so long because city leaders were content for it to remain less developed. Though many houses are on more than a couple acres, the city used to have a one-acre minimum. Much of the development now is higher density, with three to four houses per acre.

That change came after the Met Council, which regulates growth in the metro area, stepped in and asked the city council to come up with a growth plan. Many residents fought the mandate, but the state Supreme Court sided with the Met Council, and now parts of the city are connected to city sewer and water, enabling more development.

Brockshus and her husband, Shane, both grew up in small towns and most recently were living in a rural farm community in Oregon when Shane's company relocated him to the Twin Cities in late 2021.

Lake Elmo was their first choice because so many of the developments are like the Fields of St. Croix, where houses are clustered together and swaths of open space around them are preserved and planted with native prairie plants.

A house they bid on sold before they could offer, but they were smitten with the city's vibe.

"We like that the amenities [like shopping and doctors] of Woodbury and Stillwater are both very close, but we don't have to live right in the busyness of those cities," Jessica said, adding that it was important to be within a mile or two of the kids' schools in the Stillwater school district.

After several unsuccessful bids, they bought a five-bedroom rambler on three-quarters of an acre in the Heritage Farm subdivision, where their 3,644-square-foot house faces a park and backs up to a pond that's surrounded by walking paths.

With more buyers than sellers in the city and relatively few houses for sale, the family bought their house sight unseen and paid slightly more than the asking price. Though Lake Elmo was the fastest-growing city in the state last year, the 24-square-mile city had only 136 existing home sales last year compared with 1,055 in 35-square-mile Woodbury.

"The fact that everyone else is just finding out about it is kind of comical," said Jason Gorman, a real estate broker who grew up in St. Paul.

In 1980, when Gorman was a kid, his dad bought a family style restaurant in Lake Elmo's tiny downtown.

Today, Gorman's office is in Oakdale, just across the border from Lake Elmo, and he's not surprised that it was the hottest market in the Twin Cities last year. He said buyers are attracted to the city because most of it is within the Stillwater school district.

The only thing lacking, he said, is housing for entry-level buyers and for empty nesters who want smaller houses and single-story living.

"If there's something missing, it's the starter market," Gorman said, noting that only five houses sold for less than $300,000 last year.

That dearth of listings makes it a tough sell for entry-level buyers and for people like Joe and Pam Connolly, empty nesters looking to downsize.

The Connollys bought a four-level house — then brand new — in Lake Elmo 34 years ago. Now they're thinking about the next phase of their lives but don't want to leave the city.

"When we married and started looking for a house, we chose Lake Elmo for its rural nature yet close to the cities where our career opportunities in technology lie," she said.

Their house is on a 1.5-acre lot and Joe likes mowing and gardening, so they're looking for one-level living and a three-car garage.

"We like the new open kitchen/living space for entertaining and would each like an office area in the home," she said.

"For years there wasn't much going on, it almost became a flyover zone," she said. "There are so many hidden gems and treasures that people don't know about if you don't live here."

Like the other top three cities on the index, Lindstrom and Minnetrista, Lake Elmo's relative anonymity is exactly what has made it so popular these days.

Tom Wiener, a longtime builder, remodeler and real estate broker in neighboring Oakdale, credits Robert Engstrom, a longtime Twin Cities developer, with helping set the tone for the kind of city that Lake Elmo would become today by championing the preservation of as much open space as possible.

"It's not one of those places where overzealous builders have squeezed as much as you can out of the land," he said. "Lake Elmo doesn't have that perception."

Jim Buchta has covered real estate for the Star Tribune for several years. He also has covered energy, small business, consumer affairs and travel.

[email protected] 612-673-7376

MaryJo Webster is the data editor for the Star Tribune. She teams up with reporters to analyze data for stories across a wide range of topics and beats.

[email protected] 612-673-1789 MaryJoWebster

Local News | Fixed it? Overdue repair manual returned to Lake Elmo Library 47 years late

A car-repair manual checked out from the Lake Elmo Library in 1975 vanished for nearly five decades, only to be returned this month, library officials said.A copy of “Chilton’s Foreign Car Repair Manual: German, Swedish, Italian Cars, Vol. 1,” still in good condition, was returned to the library by an anonymous sender on Nov. 2 via Priority Mail Express.There was no return address, and the check-out slip at the front of the hardcover book had been removed. The postal code of origin was 54022, which includes Ri...

A car-repair manual checked out from the Lake Elmo Library in 1975 vanished for nearly five decades, only to be returned this month, library officials said.

A copy of “Chilton’s Foreign Car Repair Manual: German, Swedish, Italian Cars, Vol. 1,” still in good condition, was returned to the library by an anonymous sender on Nov. 2 via Priority Mail Express.

There was no return address, and the check-out slip at the front of the hardcover book had been removed. The postal code of origin was 54022, which includes River Falls, Wis.

According to a handwritten note in the package, the sender checked out the book for reference while working on an old Mercedes-Benz.

“A few months later, I moved and apparently the book got packed up,” the sender wrote. “Forty-seven years later, I found it in a trunk with other interesting things from the ’70s. It’s a little overdue, but I thought you might want it back. My apologies to anyone in Lake Elmo who has been working on an old Benz in the last 47 years.”

Included in the package was a $200 donation to the library, said Karen Rodricks, services supervisor for Lake Elmo Library, which is part of the Washington County Library system.

“The book had already been marked as ‘lost,’ but we were happy to have it find its way home again — even after 47 years,” Rodricks said. “Unfortunately, it is too outdated and no longer in good enough condition to circulate, so it will be enjoying a long-awaited retirement from our library shelves.”

The library doesn’t charge fines or late fees, so there are no charges to clear from the sender’s account, she said.

“While we would love to thank them for returning the item and for their generous donation to the library, we no longer have any paper records that would tell us the identity of the borrower,” she said. “We appreciate their commitment to returning the book.”

The Chilton’s repair manual is believed to be “the most overdue book” ever returned to the Washington County Library system, library officials said Wednesday.

In July, staff at the Hardwood Creek Library in Forest Lake received a copy of “The Easter Bunny That Overslept” that was overdue by more than three decades.

“If ‘The Easter Bunny that Overslept’ has been on your next-to-read list, we have good news for you,” library officials wrote in an Instagram post on July 13. “We were delighted when a patron returned it this week just a little overdue — by 35 years! Luckily, we don’t charge fines or late fees so there no charges to clear from her account.”

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