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The Akeley Council, having received the resignation of liquor store manager Bob Winner effective March 31, appointed Lacey Hitchcock to fill the position on an interim basis. Hitchcock is currently employed at the liquor store at $9.09 per hour; she will receive $12.50 per hour as manager. The council will interview applicants at 4 p.m. Monday, April 12, the interviews open to the public. The council agreed the position should be paid on an hourly basis, as opposed to salaried. A final determination on filling the position is expected at the regular April 14 meeting.
Retirements at Nevis School have forestalled trimming staff, but the school will be operating with one less administrator. Life science and chemistry teacher Dodie Egge resigned, but will be replaced. First grade teacher Pat Spurlin and phy ed instructor Sue Fisher submitted letters of resignation; neither will be replaced. And Shelly Mahowald indicated a willingness to work on a half-time basis as a Title I teacher. Current elementary principal Sharon Hadrava will move into the classroom, and/or possibly Title I. All grades will continue as two-sections.
Republican candidate for governor Marty Seifert made a whistle stop appearance in Park Rapids Thursday evening, reminding his audience the state is at a fundamental crossroads. "I love this state too much to see it become a smaller California," he said of people exiting the Pacific state at a rate of 1,000 per day. "They are leaving behind a bureaucratic nightmare." Minnesota government is the state's largest employer, he said. "Government is too big, too expensive and has too much power.
Anglers gathered on Long Lake Thursday morning to take in some fishing now that the ice is off the lake.
A band of "armed and dangerous" mystery writers took Park Rapids library patrons captive Saturday, sharing wit and wisdom on the intricacies of spinning their tales. "We should be approached with a great sense of humor," the authors cautioned their audience. Minnesota Crime Wave members, bedecked in hoodlum gear, include William Kent Krueger, who pens the Cork O'Connor series; Carl Brookins, known for the Tanner-Whitney and Sean Sean books, and Ellen Hart, who has authored the Jane Lawless mystery series, set in the Twin Cities. Hart, a former chef, told her audience she had a choice of
The significantly scaled back General Assistance Medical Care bill that earned legislative approval last week is raising questions and concerns at St. Joseph's Area Health Services. "Overall, it's a bad bill," St. Joseph's CEO Ben Koppelman said. "It represents significant cuts for hospitals and other providers. And as it stands now, there are a lot of unanswered questions as to how hospitals will administer this." Gov.
Rick Berscheid has assumed the role of district conservationist with the Natural Resources Conservation Service, a federal agency with headquarters in the USDA Service Center in Park Rapids. He replaces Russ Johnsrud who recently retired. Berscheid grew up in Long Prairie and graduated from the University of Minnesota with a degree in agricultural industries and marketing, working in Albert Lea for the NRCS, Alexandria and, most recently in Kauai, Hawaii.
The Park Rapids School Board, convening a special meeting Monday, awarded bids for the mechanical ventilation improvement project and pool filtration equipment replacement. "The bids are very attractive compared to the estimates," Dave Bergeron of Johnson Controls told the board. "But that's not unexpected. Contractors are chomping to get going." The equipment-only bid for modular air handling units for the ventilation project was awarded to Schwab, Vollhaber, Lubratt, Inc. of St. Paul at a cost of $321,650. The contract estimate was $373,114.
The mid-point of the annual Hubbard County Food Shelf drive found donations down from '09, but food shelf director Dave Long remains optimistic. Last year at this time, the food shelf received a $10,000 estate bequest and $25,000 in stimulus money. But the community is rising to the occasion. "Donations are good," Long said. "I do not anticipate deficit spending." St. Peter's youth-driven initiative has brought in $1,700 in cash, 1,300 pounds to date.
The dueling dribblers - Akeley and Nevis alums - had fans on their feet as the two teams played a fast-paced thriller Saturday. Akeley claimed a 55-52 victory in the reprise performance, the Nevis Tigers battling back from a 15-point deficit at one stage of the game. Willy Wicks' three-pointer spree at game's end put the Tigers back in the running. But the Anglers' formidable line-up of talented hoopsters proved daunting. "Akeley was superior," said Bill Toft, Community Education director and event organizer. "Size won the day.