Meteorologists confirm tornado struck west of Twin Cities

WATERTOWN — An EF1 tornado touched down near Watertown west of the Twin Cities overnight, damaging buildings and flipping cars but caused no injuries, the National Weather Service said Saturday.

Meteorologists said after surveying the damage by daylight that the tornado packed peak winds estimated at 105 mph as it left a path of damage 4.3 miles long and up to 500 yards wide through Hollywood Township. A home weather station recorded a 99 mph wind before it blew off the house.

An EF1 tornado is considered weak on the enhanced Fujita scale, which runs from EF0 to EF5, but it still caused serious damage.

One Hollywood Township resident, Adam Falk, told KARE-TV he was sleeping in the basement when the storm hit and he was awakened by debris falling on him. He said all of the top-floor windows were destroyed and the doors were blown off their hinges.

“The barn is toast. … The whole first 4 feet of the roof sheeting on the house is gone so water got all the way down to the basement. Heavy water damage,” Falk told the station. He said he wasn’t sure if the home was salvageable.

Falk said his parents raise chickens and his sister has a couple horses on the hobby farm, but those animals seemed fine.

“The cat seemed rattled,” he added.

Xcel Energy said around 225,000 customers in Minnesota and western Wisconsin lost power during the overnight storms. Around 132,000 customers were still without power around 8:30 a.m. Saturday, mostly in the western Twin Cities metro area. The utility said its crews worked through the night, and that other crews from five states were dispatched to aid in restoring service, but the company said it didn’t have an immediate estimate on when power would be fully restored.

The storms brought down large trees in several suburbs. Wind gusts of up to 70 miles an hour were reported in St. Paul, Golden Valley, New Brighton, Maple Grove, Richfield and Lakeville.

Mower County

APS board approves sanctioning boys volleyball

Education

Austin Seniors receive Horatio Alger Scholarships

Crime, Courts & Emergencies

Man sentenced to over eight years for criminal sexual conduct with a child

Grand Meadow

2 injured in Saturday afternoon crash

Mower County

Courtney’s bench: Family and friends honor loved one lost in hope to raise awareness for mental illness

Mower County

Summerset Theatre opens Season 56 with the musical ‘Annie’

Adams

Adams Dairy Days celebrating 50th

Mower County

Gabby Weiss passes away, legacy will continue on the baseball diamond

Mower County

New sculpture is giving visitors another destination stop in Austin

Crime, Courts & Emergencies

Convictions: May 27-June 3

Mower County

In Your Community: Duplicate Bridge

Mower County

In Your Community: Mower County Senior Center

Education

Education Briefs

Education

Pacelli Honor Roll

News

US hiring and wage growth picked up last month in sign of sustained economic health

News

Many Americans are still shying away from EVs despite Biden’s push, an AP-NORC/EPIC poll finds

News

After 41 years, Pat Sajak makes his final spin as host of ‘Wheel of Fortune’

Mower County

Several file for local offices

Agriculture

Minnesota ID‘s first case of avian influenza in a dairy herd

News

D-Day anniversary haunted by dwindling number of veterans and shadowed by Europe’s new war

Mower County

Shawn Tweten steps up to challenge Finstad in primary

News

Well, hello!: ‘Hello, Dolly!’ opens CST’s seventh year

News

Appeals court halts Trump’s Georgia case during appeal of order allowing Willis to stay on case

Mower County

Institute scientist Hilakivi-Clarke receives grant to study possible benefits of organic, pasture-raised beef