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MINNEAPOLIS - Thomas Beach is temporarily shut down after testing last week showed higher than recommended levels of E. coli bacteria.

It's one of the most popular destinations in the Twin Cities, but unfortunately Thomas Beach will be closed at least through the end of the work week, officials said.

On Sunday, wind surfer Ian Mactavish, 65, braved the heavy clouds, strong winds and the threat of E. coli bacteria.

"Going to be a good day I think ... No falling down with my mouth open, that's for sure," he said.

On Thursday, the Minneapolis Parks and Recreation Board closed Thomas Beach on Lake Calhoun after water samples averaged over the last five weeks showed levels E. coli above state safety standards.

The other two beaches on the lake -- North and 32nd -- remained open with substantially lower bacteria readings.

The parks' marketing director, Dawn Sommers, said each part of the lake has its own ecosystem -- water fowl, water runoff and beach slope. These can bring in different levels of bacteria that won't make it to the other side, she said. A strong north wind also keeps the waves pushing toward Thomas Beach.

The park board has received no reports of anyone getting sick from the water. Typically, symptoms show up one to four days after ingesting the bacteria.

The parks board will test the beaches again Monday.

Sommers said Thomas Beach will likely remain closed for another week to several weeks until the bacteria averages over a five-week period decline.

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