Area Briefs January 19


FARGO – The MSUM Planetarium and Prairie Public Broadcasting are partnering to host a free Stars of PBS planetarium event on Saturday, January 28. The program “One World, One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure” will show in the planetarium every 45 minutes starting at 9:45 a.m. with the last show at 3 p.m.

Across the street in MSUM’s Center for Business, student groups and community organizations will offer science demonstrations, children’s activities, a meet and greet with PBS KIDS character Daniel Tiger and a scavenger hunt for a chance to win a private planetarium show. 

“One World, One Sky: Big Bird’s Adventure” tickets are free and available in the Center for Business 45 minutes before each show on a first-come first-served basis. Sixty tickets are available for each show. Parking is available south of the Center for Business at 11th Street and 9th Avenue South. 

The event is generously supported by the Minnesota Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund, landmark legislation passed by Minnesota voters in 2008 to help preserve and document Minnesota’s culture, history and heritage.

Throughout the year, the MSUM Planetarium offers an array of programs with topics ranging from asteroids and dinosaurs, to universe and galaxy offerings, to seasonal shows. 

Prairie Public Broadcasting, headquartered in Fargo, is a non-profit member station of PBS and NPR that provides educational, technological, and public media services to communities and individuals across North Dakota and the region.


DILWORTH – Shopko Optical, a leader in providing trusted eye care to communities for over 40 years, is pleased to open its new center in Dilworth, Minnesota. The new center is opened January 9, and is located at 1710 W Center Ave, Suite 120. Shopko Optical welcomes James Connelly, O.D. along with staff members from Midwest Vision Centers in Moorhead who are joining Shopko Optical. Dr. Connelly will provide patients with comprehensive eye care services, including eye exams, contact lens fitting, and detection and management of eye disease.

“We are thrilled to join the Dilworth community and welcome Midwest Vision Centers’ patients,” said Russ Steinhorst, Shopko Optical CEO. “With this new location, we can serve the needs of the community and continue to provide the patient-centric care that Shopko Optical is known for.”  

 In addition, Shopko Optical’s Kids in Focus program will work with Dilworth’s local Lions Club to identify eligible children within the area to receive a comprehensive eye exam and pair of glasses at no charge from Shopko Optical. Those looking to participate can contact their local Lions Club.


ST. PAUL, Minn. – The Minnesota Department of Revenue will open the state Individual Income Tax filing season on Monday, January 23, 2023. This date matches the opening day for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The filing deadline to submit 2022 Minnesota income tax returns is Tuesday, April 18, 2023. This date matches the filing deadline for 2022 federal income tax returns.

Tax software providers and tax professionals may be accepting and preparing tax returns before January 23 and will submit those returns when the IRS and state systems open.

“Filing electronically is still the best way to ensure your tax return is accurate and filed securely. Some Minnesotans may also qualify to file their returns electronically for free,” said Revenue Commissioner Paul Marquart. “If you’re entitled to a refund, choosing to get that refund via direct deposit is the most convenient and secure way.”

Tax Conformity Update

Recently, a bill was signed into law that brings more of Minnesota’s tax code into conformity with the federal tax code. These changes impact 2022 forms and instructions as well as prior years. Revenue will update the impacted tax forms and instructions and work with certified tax software providers to get their products updated to reflect these changes. The updated forms and instructions and a list of certified tax software providers will be available on our website by January 23.

Electronic Filing and Free Tax Help

Free electronic filing is available for Minnesotans who meet certain requirements. You may be eligible to file electronically for free if your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) is $73,000 or less. To see if you are eligible for free electronic filing, see the Electronic Filing Software for Individuals page on the department’s website.

You may qualify for free tax preparation help for your federal and Minnesota income tax returns. To qualify, you must meet one of these criteria: be age 60 or older, have a disability, speak limited or no English, or have income less than $60,000 per year. There are over 170 free tax preparation sites across Minnesota where you can get help from IRS-certified volunteers. Most sites are open January 29 – April 15 and you can visit our website to find free tax preparation sites near you by the end of January.  


DILWORTH – The 33rd annual Dilworth Star Business of the Year for 2022 is Lilac Homes, which opened in the fall of 2019.  Lilac Homes is located at 1500 Southwood Drive NE in Dilworth.

Lilac Homes was selected by the Dilworth Star Business Committee as the 2022 Star Business of the year for their investment in Dilworth and for creating employment opportunities (up to 32 employees).  Lilac Homes provides enhanced assisted living and memory care for their residents.  Lilac Homes strives to engage their residents in all activities as they have experienced in the traditional family setting.

“Lilac Homes is excited to be selected as the Star Business of the Year.  We strive to provide needed support to the community and aging population.  Serving as an alternative to large scale facilities, Lilac Homes is focused to provide memory care and enhanced assisted living services to those wanting to live in a smaller setting.” – Bill Nelson, Owner

Lilac Homes will be presented with this award and honored by the Dilworth City Council at its regularly scheduled City Council meeting on Monday, January 23, 2023 at 6:00 p.m.

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