Editor's note: This is the third in a series of articles examining each section of a Progress Park Rapids indicator report.
Fund raising efforts for the Park Rapids fireworks show exceeded expectations. The goal was to raise $20,000 and so far $25,885 has come in. Alan Zemek, Rotary Club member and fireworks fund raising coordinator said he hoped people would step up but with the economy, he wasn't sure what would happen. "I was fairly confident," he said. "People come to expect this show and it means a lot to them." Excess money for this year's show will go into a reserve fund for the 2010 show.
Park Rapids will move forward with Main Avenue reconstruction in 2010. The Park Rapids City Council approved ordering improvement and preparation of plans for the project Tuesday evening, after holding a public hearing with more than 50 people in attendance. David Collins, Hubbard County Regional Economic Development Commission Executive Director, gave a brief history of the project. In the summer of 2006, the city announced the infrastructure under Main Avenue needed to be replaced. "We could have just replaced it, torn up the streets, put the sidewalks back the way they are ...
This year, the Professional Bull Riders Challenger Tour will celebrate 31 years of professional bull riding July 2-4 in Park Rapids. The gates open at 5 p.m. with the show starting at 6:30 p.m. at Double J Rodeo Grounds on Highway 34 east of Park Rapids. The event is rain or shine. Each night event-goers can see between 40 and 50 bull rides, featuring some of the best bucking bulls, said producer Randy Jokela.
Representatives from several cultural and art organizations discussed ways to incorporate art into downtown with the Main Avenue reconstruction project slated for 2010. The cracker barrel session was the third in a series that will be held each month. Paul Dove led the discussion, representing the Park Rapids Lakes Area Arts Council, a non-profit community arts collective. The group discussed having a committee to look at standards for art that would be displayed downtown. Also, the group had a discussion about having a broad theme for downtown.
Editor's note: This is the second in a series of articles examining each section of a Progress Park Rapids indicator report.
Don and Monika Wilkins will showcase their martin colony on Long Lake at the seventh annual Minnesota MartinFest. The event kicks off bright and early. Don invites early birds to come before 8 a.m. to "wake up with the martins." The colony he has over the water is the largest in Minnesota, Don boasts. "I've been active in the martin hobby for many years," he said. Don's colony is unusual, he said, in that he didn't follow the "book." All of the houses are out in the lake and only about 3 to 4 feet above the water. He provides nesting material in a goose cone.
Bobby Bolton has toured across the country with musicians and rock stars of all kinds as the driver. "It's so cool. This is how we roll," he said, pointing at the bus, which is decked out with large flat screen TVs and all the amenities. Bolton was home to visit his mother, Edna, who lives just south of Dorset, this past week. Currently, he is the driver for the Derek Trucks Band.
Park Rapids Area Schools will need to borrow money because of actions made by Gov. Tim Pawlenty. The governor announced this week he would delay $1.77 billion in revenue to K-12 schools for the 2010-11 biennium. The delay in payments to school districts means Park Rapids will need to borrow money to make up for the missing revenue. Currently, schools get 90 percent of their state aid during the fiscal year, with 10 percent held until the fall, the following fiscal year.
The Park Rapids Enterprise will run a series of articles featuring sections of a Progress Park Rapids indicator report over the next several weeks. The Park Rapids Indicator Report is available at the Web site, www.progressparkrapids.com . The report assesses the status of the Park Rapids community and includes demographic information.