Countless lives were blessed by Bev Jacobson, 61, who died Friday after a battle with breast cancer. That's the sentiment expressed by her family and friends. "She was one in a million," said Angie Graham, education coordinator at Calvary Lutheran Church, where Jacobson was the administrative secretary for 23 years. Calvary Lutheran has been a solemn place for the last few days, Graham said. "She loved being a part of everything," she said. "You could just feel her love and generosity." Bev's daughter, Michelle, said her mother's life was centered around her family and friends.
Two citizens thought assessments were distributed unfairly for street and utility improvement projects in Park Rapids. Judy Garden and Patricia Berg live on Eagle Drive, one of the streets that received improvements this year. They attended a public hearing Wednesday to tell the Park Rapids City Council their concerns. "I felt that we should just divide it 10 equal ways on the assessment instead of assessing each one of us," Garden said. Some people will benefit from the project more than others, she explained.
Students learned how a dog can change someone's life in an instant when they met Len Quinn and Ginger Wednesday. Quinn, a Lions Club member and past president from Ripon, Wis., spoke to Park Rapids Area High School students about his experience losing his eyesight and later finding his way with the help of a leader dog. He started to lose his sight in 1994 and became legally blind in 1998. "Life had changed for me, I couldn't do the things I used to do," Quinn said. Eating, going to the store - everything was more difficult, he said. "Then I was introduced to Leader Dogs for the Blin
This Christmas season, with the economy hurting, people are being encouraged to shop locally with Jingle Bells Sweepstakes in Park Rapids. "The big boxes and the little stores, everyone participates," said Katie Magozzi, Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce Executive Director. "Park Rapids really says 'Merry Christmas.'" Along with Jingle Bells, another annual holiday event is coming up Friday, Nov. 28.
What started as a small project to send clothes and medical supplies to the less fortunate in Iraq spiraled into a massive effort across northern Minnesota. Don and Connie Fondow of Park Rapids worked on the project with their son, Sgt. Jonathan Fondow, who is part of the 2-320 Field Artillery Regiment under the 101st Airborne. He is on his third tour, now stationed in Balad, Iraq. He works in operational law, with detainees, as well as soldiers in Balad.
David W. Konshok and Susan Tomte were voted onto the Park Rapids City Council Tuesday, beating out longtime incumbents Clyde Zirkle and Gene Kinkel. The newly-elected council members are excited about the future of the city and acknowledge there will be challenges ahead. "I'm very pleased and excited to be back on the council," Konshok said.
Assessments for three Park Rapids street and utility projects have been approved by the Park Rapids City Council. City Engineer Gary Nansen of Ulteig Engineers, presented the assessments at public hearings Oct. 28. Pleasant Avenue, Second and Fourth Streets and Highway 34 east were all discussed at the hearings. Public hearings were also held before the projects began, at which time estimated costs were given.
The Park Rapids city Web site is getting a facelift from geography students at Century Middle School. "We desperately need to update the Web site," said City Administrator Bill Smith. The opportunity for students to work on the site came after Smith received a call from Ardis Johnson, a Social Studies teacher at Park Rapids Century Middle School. She had an idea to have her geography students work on updating the city's Web site and thought it would be a good learning experience for the students, he said. "At first I wondered, 'why the geography class?'" Smith said.
Park Rapids City Council members are concerned about stretching the city's bond capacity, as well as the 2009 budget because of fear of losing Local Government Aid. The discussion evolved Tuesday evening after the council voted to deny a Hubbard County Regional Economic Development Commission proposed budget increase request for 2009. Dave Collins, executive director for HCREDC, presented a proposed budget at a previous council meeting and requested $40,000 for 2009, an increase of $10,000 from the $30,000 the city had paid the previous year. Councilman Ted Godfrey added the HCREDC item
House Dist. 2B candidates sounded off about the economy, healthcare and education at a candidate forum Monday night organized by the League of Women Voters of Park Rapids. Incumbent state Rep. Brita Sailer (DFL-Park Rapids) and Doug Lindgren, the Republican endorsed candidate from Bagley, fielded questions submitted by the audience. Sue Trnka of the Minnesota Environmental Partnership also attended the event to provide information and answer questions about the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment that will be on the ballot Nov.