News & Announcements

Raingarden Design + Installation 

Professional and Contractor Training

Water that does not evaporate or is not absorbed into the ground is eventually discharged to our local water bodies as surface runoff. Contaminants in this runoff impact water quality in our local lakes and rivers.

Runoff from private and public property affects our drinking water and our recreational waterways. As we’re working to increase awareness among the general public, we also need local expertise in the design and construction of stormwater management practices such as raingardens. Local government staff can use this training to improve their knowledge base for gaining job approval authority.

This professional workshop, Raingarden Design + Installation, presented by Metro Blooms in partnership with Blue Thumb - Planting for Clean Water will cover technical details related to: site assessment, runoff estimates and sizing, runoff conveyance, design documents, design troubleshooting, infiltration testing, excavation, de-compaction, grading, materials, plant selection, and basic maintenance requirements.  

The training will begin with a presentation and interactive site assessment and design activities. Following lunch (provided) we'll get hands on with a raingarden installation on the Woolen Mills property. Equipment provided.

“This type of landscape is better for the earth and makes sense from a business perspective,” says Rich Harrison, Landscape Architect with Metro Blooms, who will be leading the workshop. “More and more people are interested in sustainable landscape design, which means we need to be able to provide expertise and solutions that are beautiful and ecologically functional.”

Thursday, June 7, 2018

8:30 AM - 4:30 PM (lunch provided)

Faribault Woolen Mill Co.

1500 2nd Ave NW

Faribault, Minnesota 55021


Register for this event at or call Deborah at 651-699-2426

This Blue Thumb Training is offered in partnership with Metro Blooms, the cities of Faribault and Owatonna, and the Rice Soil and Water Conservation District.

Public Works Week May 20-26

The Public Works Department will hold an open house on Wednesday, May 23, 2018 from 4-6pm.

This free community event coincides with National Public Works Week May 20-26.

The open house provides an opportunity for residents to get a glimpse of, and learn more about the equipment and staff that operate and maintain Faribault's roads, facilities, and below ground infrastructure.

Take part in a variety of activities at this family friendly event:

  • Meet and visit with staff behind the equipment.
  • Tour the Public Works and Parks Facility.
  • View trucks and heavy equipment.
  • Enjoy food and refreshments.

Public Works Open House

Fix a Leak Week2018 March EPA Leaks

Did you know that it can take less than 5 minutes to find and fix a water leak in your home?  March 19-25 is Fix a Leak week.  Visit the EPA WaterSense site for more information!

Rice SWCD in Partnership with City of Faribault Awarded Clean Water Funds for Spring Park Subwatershed Analysis

Rice SWCD in partnership with the City of Faribault has been awarded Clean Water Legacy grant funds from the State of Minnesota. These grant funds will be utilized for a project known as the Spring Park Subwatershed Analysis.


The Spring Park watershed is over 225 acres. Most of the watershed is fully developed into a variety of residential, commercial, and institutional land uses. Project funds will be utilized to conduct a watershed analysis with the goal of identifying pollutant load sources and potential areas for structural stormwater BMPs for future retro-fit projects to reduce instances of localized flooding, reduce peak storm flows, and improve the ecological health and quality of stormwater runoff discharging into Crocker’s Creek.


By being a recipient of these highly competitive Clean Water grant funds, Rice SWCD and the City of Faribault in partnership will be able to incorporate the assessment of this subwatershed into future strategic long range planning efforts, allowing decision makers the ability to make informed decisions that help protect resources of high value, and work to make meaningful improvements in water quality.


For additional information on specifics of the Spring Park Subwatershed Project, please feel free to contact Melissa King with the City of Faribault at or (507) 333-0369; or for additional information on Clean Water Grant projects, please feel free to contact Steven Pahs at or (507) 332-5408.

Are you considering flying a drone?  "Know Before You Fly" is an educational campaign that provides prospective users with the information and guidance needed to fly safely and responsibly. Make sure you know the regulations and fly safely.  For more information click here




Public Works Director, Travis Block, recently completed a project with the EPA utilizing the Climate Resilience Evaluation & Awareness Tool (CREAT).  CREAT is a software tool to assist drinking water and wastewater utility owners and operators in understanding potential climate change threats and in assessing the related risks to individual utilities. Check out the video on the link below.