From Oct. 13–Dec. 5, Dakota County is hosting We Are Water, a traveling exhibit where community members will learn about our connection to water in our local areas and throughout the state at an interactive display.
- Pleasant Hill Library, Hastings
- Lebanon Hills Regional Park Visitor Center, Eagan (closed Nov. 14-15 and Nov. 21-23)
The We Are Water exhibit will include personal stories from county residents, historical events, and scientific information such as conservation, water usage and pollution prevention.
This event aims to strengthen visitors' relationship with water, share new perspectives, and increase awareness and participation in water protection activities.
Events and related activities
All events and activities are free and open to the public. Visit this page often as event information will be added.
Drinking Water Treatment Plant Tour
Learn more about where drinking water comes from, common pollutants impacting water and the treatment process that makes water safe to drink. Presented by the City of Hastings. Registration required. Geared for adults and youth ages 12 and older.
City of Hastings Water Treatment Plant
1300 North Frontage Road, Hastings
Thursday, Oct. 20, 1–2 p.m. Register now.
Thursday, Oct. 20, 2–3 p.m. Register now.
Thursday, Nov. 17, 4:30–5:30 p.m. Register now.
Thursday, Nov. 17, 5:30–6:30 p.m. Register now.
MPCA Smart Salting for Parking Lots & Sidewalks Certification Training
Building maintenance staff, including managers and general workers, and private contractors are invited to attend this free, hands-on workshop and learn sensible salting practices to save money and time, protect lakes and rivers, and keep parking lots, sidewalks and service roads safe. Receive a “Smart Salting for Parking Lots and Sidewalks" manual. Attendees have an opportunity to attain MPCA Smart Salting Level 1 Certification in snow and ice control best practices (listing on MPCA training website). Lunch provided.
Western Service Center
Thursday, Oct. 20, 8 a.m.-1:30 p.m. Registration by Wednesday, Oct. 12. Register now.
Celebrate “Imagine a Day Without Water"
Come take a tour of Lakeville's Water Treatment Facility to see where the city's groundwater becomes potable water. Learn how your home's water usage affects our drinking water supplies and the quality of lakes and rivers.
Lakeville Water Treatment Facility
8400 Ipava Ave., Lakeville
Friday, Oct. 21
Tour times: 8:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m. or 1 p.m. Register now.
Nitrate Clinic for Private Well Owners
Bring private well water samples in a clean container to get your water tested for nitrates. Visit the interactive We are Water MN exhibit while you wait for your results.
Pleasant Hill Library
1490 S. Frontage Road, Hastings
Thursday, Oct. 27, 4:30–6:30 p.m.
Story Trail: We Are Water Protectors
Enjoy the great outdoors with family and friends and read from giant picture book pages displayed in the park. We are Water Protectors is a 2021 Caldecott Medal winner and No. 1 New York Times bestseller by Anishinaabe and Metis author Carole Lindstrom.
Vermillion Falls Park
215 21st St. E., Hastings
Oct. 7–9, 8 a.m.–8 p.m.
Lebanon Hills Visitor Center
860 Cliff Road, Eagan
Oct. 13–16, 5 a.m.–10 p.m.
Thompson County Park
360 Butler Ave. E., West St Paul
Oct. 20–23, 5:30 a.m.–10 p.m.
Spring Lake Park Reserve
8395 127th St. E., Hastings
Oct. 28–30, 5 a.m.–10 p.m.
Protecting the Waters
Join us for a panel discussion from the International Indigenous Youth Council – Twin Cities Chapter. Youths will share their experience traveling to Standing Rock Reservation in North Dakota from 2016 during the Line 3 pipeline protests. Hear from youths who have and continue to be part of the movement to protect our waters. This will be an open panel discussion facilitated by Indigenous Roots with a short screening of the youth caravan to Standing Rock. Geared for adults and youth ages 14 and older.
Saturday, Oct. 15, 2–3:30 p.m.
Water Storytelling and Collage
Join us for storytelling and collage with Julie Boada of the Fond du Lac people and Park Ranger Judy Geck who will share memories, relationships and the hidden histories that have shaped their own personal experiences in and near Minnesota waters. Presented by ArtStart. Registration required.
Pleasant Hill Library
Tuesday, Oct. 25, 3–5 p.m. Geared for teens. Register now.
Wednesday, Nov. 2, 1–3 p.m. Geared for adults. Register now.
Thursday, Nov. 3, 5:30–7:30 p.m. Geared for adults. Register now.
Go with the Flow: Watercolor Painting
Discover ways to become in tune with your body, mind, and environment through watercolor painting in this stress-free and reflective, creative session with Chilean artist Tomas Araya. Registration required. Geared for adults and youth ages 14 and older.
Pleasant Hill Library
Monday, Nov. 7, 5:30–7 p.m. Register now.
Dakota and Ojibwe Water Storytime
Join us to hear Tanagidan To win (Tara Perron) read from her Indigenous children's books about water, mother earth and traditional storytelling. Geared for youth ages 3 and older and their families.
Pleasant Hill Library
Monday, Nov. 14, 6–6:45 p.m.
Groups invited to visit
Groups, such as schools, civic organizations, churches, living centers and more, are invited to schedule a visit to the We Are Water Minnesota exhibit. A guided 45-minute session includes an introduction to We Are Water Minnesota, an audio story from a Dakota County resident, and free time to explore the exhibit. Optional activities are available for extended tours. Contact Paula Liepold at email@example.com or 952-891-7117 for more information and to schedule your group's visit.
Volunteer and take action
There are several ways you can get involved and make a difference in your local community to protect water resources.
Protect our Water Commit to Action List
For more information about the Minnesota Humanities Center and the We Are Water event, visit the We Are Water program page.
We Are Water partners and resources
We Are Water MN is led by the Minnesota Humanities Center in partnership with Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, Minnesota Historical Society, Minnesota Department of Health, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and Minnesota Department of Agriculture. We also partnered and collaborated with Dakota County Soil and Water Conservation District and Vermillion River Watershed.
We Are Water MN is funded in part by the National Endowment for the Humanities and with money from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund that was created with the vote of the people of Minnesota on Nov. 4, 2008.