Wee Pals Child Care Center
Wee Pals is a busy place filled with the sounds of little people and big people playing, laughing, crying, singing, dancing, contemplating, and exploring. It provides a pleasant atmosphere where children and adults share ideas, questions, discoveries, choice making, and learning about themselves and the world.
Parents of children in Wee Pals care have peace of mind knowing that their children are cared for in a nurturing, child-friendly environment in which the children can succeed in their developmental goals. The Owatonna Foundation has helped ensure that they can continue to provide high-quality childcare by investing in early childhood space, and that Wee Pals continues to be a premier childcare center serving the youngest citizens of Steele County.
Steele County Historical Society
The Steele County Historical Society (SCHS) has been the grateful recipient of much assistance from the Owatonna Foundation. SCHS owns and operates the Village of Yesteryear, a pioneer village comprised of fifteen structures. In recent years, the Owatonna Foundation has provided assistance with the Carriage House, Owatonna Town Hall, Saco Church, Schoolhouse, and Dunnell House, with grants for restoration, acclimatization of the Church, and three new roofs.
The comfort of heating and cooling in The Saco Church allows the Society to host weddings year round, and provides a place for an annual lecture series making Steele County history available and accessible to all.
What can compare to the Dunnell House decorated for Christmas, the Schoolhouse full of children during a “Hands on History Camp,” or sharing our local
government history in the newly opened Owatonna Town Hall? As the Village comes to life, guests have the opportunity to step back in time and experience the proud legacy that has made this community all that it is. Thanks to the Foundation, the Village will be an educational resource for generations to come.
Owatonna Public LibraryThe Owatonna Public Library has been an integral part of the community of Owatonna and Steele County since the doors first opened to the public in 1900. The 1992 addition to the original structure greatly expanded the children’s section and increased the adult services area. A significant grant by the Owatonna Foundation allowed the architects that designed the addition to ensure It would be visually and structurally compatible with the original turn-of-the-century building design.
The library currently has over 25,000 registered patrons and a weekly average of 4,100 adults and children that pass through the doors to use a wide array of library services. The library’s current collection is over 129,000 print materials which includes books, magazines, newspapers and large-print books. An extensive collection of other materials includes compact discs, videos, DVD’s, audio books, ESL and genealogy materials. Numerous other services are provided at the Owatonna Library including: online computer databases, free internet access, and children’s services which include computer access, summer reading programs, weekly storytimes, books-to-go, daycare delivery and many other children’s activities.
The Owatonna Public Library is constantly adapting to meet the changing needs of a vibrant and growing community, and grants from the Owatonna Foundation help them meet those needs.