Twin Cities-area family raises reindeer brood

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MARINE ON ST. CROIX, Minn. (AP) -- Yes, Virginia, there really are reindeer farms in Minnesota.

In fact, the Minnesota Board of Animal Health tells the St. Paul Pioneer Press there are 10 farms in the state that raise reindeer. One is Johmar Farms near Marine on St. Croix, along the border with Wisconsin north of the Twin Cities.

Owner John Block jokes that Santa might even stop by on Christmas Eve if he needs replacements for his tired reindeer crew. It just so happens that Johmar has eight of the hooved and antlered beasts on hand, the same number that guides St. Nick's sleigh.

The Block family's reindeer brood is busy during the Christmas season making appearances in the area.

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