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Lake Country Associates, Inc., providing community mental health services, has opened at 515 Bridge St. East, the four managing partners and staff familiar faces to Park Rapids area residents. Managing partners Deb Farrell, Jean Greseth, Dawn Pappas and Shawn Anderson have been working together since 2001through the Bemidji-based Upper Mississippi Mental Health Center. "We wanted to be in a position to more readily respond to the needs of the community," Farrell, Master of Social Work (MSW) and Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW), said of the decision to open the facility.
When author Barbara Sommer arrived to share her research on the Civilian Conservation Corps in Minnesota, a member of her audience was revisiting his own history in the CCC. "Hard Work and a Good Deal," CCC veterans sharing stories of their experiences, tapped fond memories for Park Rapids resident LeRoy Czeczok, 91. "It was one of the best - and the first - jobs I've had," he said of his tenure that spanned more than three years. "Those were hard times," LeRoy, one of eight children, recalled. The country was in the throes of the Great Depression.
The DAC Salvage Depot, a work-in-progress for several months, is now open for business at 320 Career Path, the former TeamWorks site on Park Rapids' eastern perimeter. The Depot is a stopping point for those looking for building materials, furniture and appliances and those willing to donate items for the ever-changing inventory. Whatever is donated must be useable, explained Ed Ranson, director of Hubbard County Developmental Achievement Center. "We're not in the scrap business.
A "polarized" group of parents, coaches and Park Rapids Hockey Association board members voiced opinions on pairing with the Leech Lake Varsity Hockey program at Monday night's school board fact-finding meeting, the final decision on the matter to be made May 17. Walker-Hackensack-Akeley is reportedly strongly in favor of the move.
Nevis School has agreed to review policy on staff's use of school facilities after receiving a complaint last week and an allegation posted on the Enterprise Web site. The comment posted on the Enterprise site alleged school board members are allowed to use the bus garage "as their personal workshop. "As a taxpayer," the anonymous person wrote, "I find this 'perk' very unfair.
Erik Ludwinski, who succumbed to a rare pediatric cancer in February at the age of 24, will be awarded two degrees with highest honors posthumously May 7 at Bemidji State University. His parents, Paul and Donna, will accept his summa cum laude Bachelor of Science diploma, his majors in computer science and computer information systems. And this, his "proud mom" notes, was after Erik missed six weeks of school last fall while undergoing "internal" radiation, tests and chemo. His tenacity and good humor endeared him to hundreds in the course of his disease. The day he died, Feb.
Nevis School Board members, encouraged by staff, agreed the time is now to recruit students. The district saw a significant drop in student numbers this year, 505 compared with 540 a year ago. "We need to take action to draw students," said Shelly Mahowald, a Title I Reading Recovery teacher in the primary grades. Activities director Bryan Wormley agreed, noting this is the time of year when parents may be weighing their options. He suggested an open enrollment round-up for students in grades beyond kindergarten. "Students are leaving this district. The time is now," Mahowald said.