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"Park Rapids is now on the Jefferson Highway," Enterprise headlines declared July 17, 1916 of a corridor of commerce and adventure - what is now state Highway 71. And the first Jefferson Highway Sociability Run on the highway stretching from New Orleans to Winnipeg, Manitoba was the talk of the town. The highway, inspired by the east-west Lincoln Highway, was designated in 1915. The 2,300-mile roadway "on the backbone of America" was nicknamed Palm to Pine, denoting the trees found at each end. The roads and trails meandered through the Louisiana Purchase land area.
The Hubbard County Food Shelf is facing a double-edged sword this year - the economy. While unemployment, home foreclosures and other issues are pushing up usage, the stagnant economy has donations heading downward. In comparison with the same point last year - four weeks into the drive - food donations are down 3,000 pounds and monetary gifts are $22,000 shy of 2010's amount. The drive runs through Friday, April 8.
A "school within a school" is in the evolutionary stage in Nevis and plans for a new early childhood building have gained "priority" status. Nevis School Board members reviewed strategic plans drafted by superintendent Steve Rassier and principal John Strom addressing curriculum, staff development, building and maintenance, technology, public relations and a middle "school within a school" concept. The revised plans are in the "infant stage," Rassier said Monday night.
Attorney Jim Wallace has been named president of Citizens National Bank, his law office on Highway 34 east now closed. Wallace is well versed in the banking industry, having served on the bank's board of directors since 1997, and as the bank's attorney. The board approached him on assuming the role following the retirement of Bob Gack in December. Wallace holds an undergraduate degree in business from the Carlson School of Management, majoring in management and earning a minor in economics, with honors.
The Park Rapids Area High School one-act play cast and crew earned another "standing ovation" this week. The school board extended kudos to the theatrical performers who have "starred" in state performances for the third year in a row. "We are very proud," activities director John Schumacher said, noting accomplishments are generally touted on the football field and basketball court. "They take their talent onto the stage, and did an outstanding job at competitions.
Joleen DeLaHunt will occupy the Century School principal's office come July, and welcome students, come September. DeLaHunt, who currently serves as Menahga School's elementary principal, has accepted the kindergarten through eighth grade principal position at Century. "She brings a wealth of experience in a variety of areas," superintendent Glenn Chiodo said of the decision reached Tuesday night. A field of 30 applicants was narrowed to six.
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death and injury to Minnesota children 14 and under. But fatalities among children are declining notably in the 34-county area served by the Child Passenger Safety (CPS) Resource Center. CPS trainer Jennifer Booge, who contracts with Mahube, is behind the wheel. Hubbard County is her base of operations. "Park Rapids is the hub," she said of child passenger safety information.
As the name Avant Garde implies, Leah Pike and daughter Riley, 6, will be adding refreshing new spirit to wardrobes - children's and women's. Avant Garde on Main will begin welcoming customers Tuesday, March 15. The former Merry Bee's owner, Mary Beth Anderson, provided the foundation for Leah Pike's venture. In 2004, the member of Business Professionals of America asked if she might become part of the clothing store crew. Pike's role, at 17, was to steam clothing arrivals. "It felt like a second home," she said of the warm tutelage she received from Anderson and the staff.