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Mille Lacs Band opens early education center

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Mille Lacs Band opens early education center
Brainerd MN 506 James St. / PO Box 974 56401

Mille Lacs Band opens new early education building

ONAMIA — The Mille Lacs Band will host a grand opening at 2:30 p.m. Friday for its new Wewinabi Early Education Center, which opened for classes on Sept. 4 adjacent to the District I Community Center, 43648 Virgo Road, Onamia, which is east of Highway 169 across from the Grand Casino Mille Lacs.

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The new building reflects the growing demand for the band’s Head Start and Early Head Start programs, which integrate Ojibwe language and cultural instruction into the standard curriculum. The 47,600-square-foot building has 17 classrooms, a gymnasium, a cultural room, large motor play areas, spaces to serve family needs and integrated storm shelters.

The Wewinabi Early Education Center incorporates several cutting-edge green features that make the building more energy-efficient, including a geothermal heating and cooling system, wind turbines, natural lighting, storm water treatment ponds and rain gardens.

Tammy Wickstrom, Mille Lacs Band early education director; Mike Moilanen, director of project management for the band’s Community Development Department; and Peter Nayquonabe, Mille Lacs Band commissioner of administration, plan to be on hand.

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