Anna Erickson is editor of the Wadena Pioneer Journal.
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The public is invited to attend a special assessment hearing for the downtown Park Rapids utility and street reconstruction project. The public hearing is at noon Tuesday, Oct. 25 at the Park Rapids Area Library lower level meeting room. City engineer Jon Olson will give a presentation and then time will be given for comments.
A proposal to develop Pioneer Park in downtown Park Rapids into a toddler park will be presented to the City Council at an upcoming meeting. The idea was brought to the Park Board Monday night by Sheri, Todd and Melissa Sanquist, who have raised money for park development in memory of Dawn Anderson, who was murdered in March. The Sanquist family has raised about $20,000 already in a memorial fund for Anderson. The preliminary design includes a cement circular patio on the east side, along with some open space.
Opinions are divided about the Park Rapids hockey co-op with Walker-Hackensack-Akeley. Several interested parents and community members told the Park Rapids Area School Board Monday night their opinions on the pairing. The co-op was formed last season as a solution to dwindling numbers of players in both districts.
A check diversion program is being implemented in Park Rapids and Hubbard County as an educational program and a means for businesses to recover costs of insufficient and closed account checks. Park Rapids businesses had a meeting earlier this year and expressed their frustration with the collection efforts of the previous agency and many had resorted to attempting to collect losses on their own. Members of the Park Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce and Downtown Business Association have discussed other alternatives and a local check diversion program came out of those discussions. "It wo
Seniors Scott Smith and Katie Just have been named 2011 Park Rapids Homecoming king and queen. The seniors were crowned Monday morning at a ceremony at Park Rapids Area High School. The program featured entertainment by student musicians who played several pieces including a rendition of the classic rock song "Freebird." The rest of the Homecoming royal court was also dressed up and presented Monday morning.
Walkers rallied Saturday for the first annual Walk Against Domestic Violence in Park Rapids. The walk was hosted by the Headwaters Intervention Center. Participants carried signs with messages such as "I am against domestic violence" and "Domestic violence will not go away on its own. Take a stand." October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. Shellie Jensen, advocate at Headwaters Intervention Center, organized the walk in memory of Dawn Anderson, who died in March as a result of domestic violence. The walk started at the Hubbard County Courthouse and went to Red Bridge Park.
A non-profit organization will help change "Wine Into Water" at the kickoff event for Wellspring for the World - Park Rapids chapter. The organization provides much needed clean water by drilling deep water wells in Africa. Larry Swenson, member of the Park Rapids chapter of Wellspring for the World, said the local group stemmed from a group in Fargo, N.D.
Bill Dent has been named the Youth Alcohol Prevention Coordinator for Hubbard County. The position, hired through St. Joseph's Area Health Services, is funded by a five-year, $1 million planning and implementation work grant from the Minnesota Department of Human Services Alcohol and Drug Abuse Division. "The goal is to change the culture around youth drinking and attitudes of the community," said St. Joseph's Community Health manager RaeAnn Mayer. Dent was introduced at a Hubbard County Drug and Alcohol Task Force meeting this week.
The Lake Country Scenic Byway and Paul Bunyan Scenic Byway economic impact study were discussed at a workshop featured at the National Scenic Byway conference recently held in Minneapolis. "Byways are of extreme interest to people and are used every year," said Park Rapids Area Chamber of Commerce executive director Katie Magozzi and representative of the Lake Country Scenic Byway. Representatives from the byway, along with University of Minnesota staff, spoke to a full room of interested representatives from byways throughout the nation. Magozzi was unable to attend the conference but s