It's really amazing how fast time goes by, when we started the year Minnesota had 853 cities, but in June Minnesota's list of cities grew by one, as Credit River Township in Scott County, became the City of Credit River after a May special election was held to elect a Mayor and 4-person city council.

I guess I've never really thought about the process of how a city comes to be, I always just figured at a certain population threshhold a township, village, or town in name grew into the title of 'city'. Well that's not correct, and I was just totally naive as to how a city comes to be.

According to the League of Minnesota Cities, Credit River, has been working on becoming a city since 2006. The League of Minnesota Cities published an online article about the process and while it above my level of understanding at times, it is pretty cool to see and read how these parts come together.

The League of Minnesota Cities wrote that it all "began in 2006 when area development caught residents’ attention. “There was a big group of residents who brought it up at that point and wanted to move forward,” said Mayor Chris Kostik, who previously served as chair of the Township Board. The township began budgeting to start making the change in 2010."

It all culminated in the special election in May where Kostick was elected Mayor, and once that was 'certified' the elected board was sworn into their new duties in June, which in essence was the first day of Credit River being a city.

Credit River is the first township since Rice Lake, located in Northern Minnesota, became a city in 2015.

How did Credit River get its unique name?

According to Southwest News Media, the township, now city of Credit River got its name from a '22-mile long tributary' that flows into the Minnesota River. But how did the river get that name? Great question the Scott County Historical Society says there are generally three stories floating around that could explain the unique name. 

The first is that Irish immigrants were granted 'credit' by a generous shopkeeper in the area, the second is somewhat similar to the first but in this telling of the naming origin it's that "French traders of Mendota used to give Irish immigrants credit on their way up the Mississippi to the Minnesota River as they traveled West."

The third, is more local, and actually names a physical person, so maybe it's the real version of how Credit River got its name. The story goes a Lakeville-based Reverend Albert Ostet came to the area to offer mass to people in the Credit River area. Well one day he was traveling to the area, and he couldn't cross the river as it was flooded, so he headed back to Lakeville, where he got to spend time with his dying mother, and he credited that flooded river with giving him the chance to spend that time with her, hence lending the name Credit River to the flowing body of water, and by happenstance to the community, township, and now city.

Where is the City of Credit River located?

Credit River is located in Southern Scott County, about 30 minutes North of Faribault. You can find it by exiting I-35 and heading West on 205th Ave (CR-64) or exit onto 185th Ave (CR-60) and head West.

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