Organizers of Park Rapids fireworks show slapped the "biggest and baddest of Minnesota" title on the annual 4th of July display a few years ago, and each year work to live up to the hype. So far, they've been successful, thanks to the community's financial support. Through those efforts and financial contributions Park Rapids is the self-proclaimed "July 4th Fireworks Capital of Minnesota." The title is well deserved, although possibly disputed by other Minnesota communities.
Repairs to the Park Rapids American Legion were being done Friday morning after a pickup crashed into the north side of the building Thursday evening. Officers responded to a call just after 6 p.m. Thursday of a one vehicle crash where a pickup traveling on Highway 34 jumped the curb, crashed through two sections of fence, ran over a small tree and struck the building.
Colorful participants of all ages were in Heartland Park on Sunday for the Park Rapids Color Dash 5K Fun Run/Walk. The event saw 170 people registered and was a fundraiser for the Park Rapids Lakes Area Chamber of Commerce, which helps support various community events like the 4th of July Parade, Legends & Logging Days, and the Christmas Tree Lighting.
An individual walked into Menahga City Hall on Wednesday, May 10 to report he found a possible pipe bomb on his property in Blueberry Township, according to information released by the Wadena County Sheriff's Office. City employees asked the individual to leave the building and told him to call county dispatch. He left the city offices, and a short time later, did call the Sheriff's Office with the location of where he and the device were at his property, which was Section 13 of Blueberry Township near Stocking Lake.
The death of a 3-year-old Hubbard County girl last week is under investigation. Hubbard County Sheriff Cory Aukes did not release the name of the child or any other information related to the death. County Attorney Jonathan Frieden said he could only confirm that a 3-year-old child from Hubbard County died on April 20, and state law requires authorities to investigate the matter.
A demolition crew brought down an old cinder block building and with it some Park Rapids history. The building that once housed Fuller's Wholesale Tackle Co. on Highway 34 and more recently NAPA Auto Parts making way for new commercial development. The property where Fuller's once stood, along with the BP gas station and the building directly to the northwest of BP was purchased by Bemidji Management Company in Grand Forks. The company did not confirm plans for the space but indications are Simonson Station Stores are going to build at the location.
Park Rapids second graders recently completed their unit on healthy eating and hosted a Healthy Food Cafe in classrooms on March 7. As a culminating activity the six second grade classes invited first graders to visit rooms and experience the Healthy Food Cafe. Second graders served snacks and taught the visiting first graders about the benefits of healthy food choices.
It was "Totally '80s" this past weekend for the Park Rapids Figure Skating Club's 28th annual show held at the Ted O. Johnson Ice Arena. The club currently has 36 skaters from Park Rapids, Nevis, Menahga and range in age from 3 to 17 years of age. Tera Garlie, president of the club, reports attendance for both shows this weekend was about 450 people.
Park Rapids is developing and evolving, hopefully in a good way. New construction is happening. Focus groups and work sessions are going on with plenty of brainstorming on how to best move Park Rapids forward. The city planning commission issued permits for $10 million in valuation for construction projects in 2016. That's nearly double the $5.6 million issued in 2015. The idea here from the city's standpoint is people are investing in the community, and it reports, over the last eight years, it has seen an average of $5.7 million per year in activity since 2009.
Derek Dean covers his face to protect against the bitter, biting cold wind as he walked along Riverside Avenue home to River Heights Apartments on Thursday, Jan. 12. Wind chills in the Park Rapids area dropped the already below zero temperature to feel like -35 degrees during the day and -45 degrees overnight.