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A face familiar to many has returned to Park Rapids. Joel Vorhes opened a law practice on First Street East this fall, but many know him from his role in the banking industry. The Macalester College graduate began his career as a banker, working in several Minnesota cities. He earned a master's degree in accounting at Truman State University in 1992, working as an accountant for a muzzle rifle company for a year before heading north. He assumed the role of operations officer at Northwoods Bank in 1993.
The Hubbard Helpers Quilt Group's year's work culminated this week with a delivery of 80 of the warmers to Toys for Tots. (The goal was 50.) Twenty members work throughout the year, each assuming a role in the completion of the quilts. Their work will resume in March, meeting mornings the first Wednesday of the month at the library. Seamstresses and donations of fabric, batting and backing are welcome. Cotton and flannel are preferred. For more information, contact Drury at 652-2558.
Longing for a burrito, enchilada or margarita? Head "south of the border" (south of Highway 34) to Lori Lea Lanes, the chefs now serving a cosmopolitan blend of pizza at the Ranch and Mexican pizzazz. Chalupa Charlie's Mexi Cantina's founders Rich Ulvin and mom Lori Lea Crep bring more than a decade of training and experience in Mexican cooking to the table.
The Park Rapids School District is earning "kudos" for the "progress made" in increasing fund balances. "You are trending in a positive direction in all funds," Heather Johnson of Carlson Highland, a CPA firm in Fergus Falls, told the board and administration Monday. "Kudos to all of you." The audit for the year ending June 30 shows a general fund balance of $3.3 million. This compares with $2 million in 2010, just over $1 million in 2009 and 2008 and $113,263 in 2007. The general fund balance net change increased $1.3 million from 2010 to 2011.
Nevis School District voters proved to be skeptical of launching students into the digital age via one-on-one computers, but support is strong among administrative staff, board members and teachers who've experienced "the possibilities." Special education instructor Leslie Sagen arrived with news she has received a grant for the purchase of two iPads, demonstrating the iPad's ability to help one of her students with communication skills. "The things you can do with them are unbounded," principal John Strom said of the 500,000 applications available.
Pastor Darrell Morton has bid farewell to a position in the nation's capital, Washington, D.C., to assume the role of pastor at Bethany Lutheran Church, Nevis. Morton's last position was Assistant to the Presiding Bishop of the Federal Chaplaincy Ministries. Their role was overseeing all Evangelical Lutheran Church of America federal chaplains, including those serving the military, Federal Bureau of Prisons and Department of Veterans Affairs. "It's a welcome change," the California native said of his return to Minnesota, where he attended the seminary.
The approaching Yuletide season is sending consumer spending into record territory. Meanwhile in Hubbard County, food shelf patronage appears to paradoxically parallel the increase. "We are busy, busy, busy," food shelf director Dave Long said of families and individuals seeking assistance. "There is a lot more usage," agreed Connie Walz, Mahube office manager who acts as a referral agent.
Beneath Park Rapids' golden arches is a restaurant with a "new, modern look," the redesign officially unveiled Monday with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The exterior upgrades include an identifiable double-lane drive through with LCD screens to view menu choices - that have increased in number. Inside, consumers of the Big Mac will find a remodeled "arcade" ambience, as opposed to McDonald's former mansard style.
Fresh out of college on the GI Bill in 1956, Jim Musburger packed up his family of four to begin his first year of teaching and coaching in Strandquist, 150 miles north of his home in Bemidji.