Dayton Visiting Bird Island 21 Jan 12

Students at St. Mary’s School in Bird Island are preparing to host Governor Mark Dayton next week. Dayton’s visit is scheduled for Friday, and he will be accompanied by Senator Gary Kubly of Granite Falls. The visit honors a promise Dayton made to St. Mary’s student McKaia Ryberg. The governor had discovered Ryberg’s talents when she sang the national anthem at a Tim Orth Foundation event as a sixth-grader in 2010. She accepted his invitation to perform the national anthem at both the Governor’s inauguration one year ago and during an October 2010 visit by President Obama to Minneapolis. She had invited him to visit her school, and now he’s taking her up on the offer. St. Mary’s officials say the school is excited about the upcoming visit, and they’re hoping to host an event for all 123 elementary students.