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The community fish house has been giving anglers the opportunity to enjoy ice fishing without the expense for more than 10 years. Located at the Fish Hook Lake public access, the fish house is operated through the local chapter of the Minnesota Darkhouse and Angling Association. Around 300 people a year use the heated facility at no charge.
Park Rapids made the national news Wednesday for having the lowest windchill temperature — 49 degrees below zero with an actual air temperature of minus 24 degrees — putting the area in a windchill warning. The National Weather Service is forecasting even colder temperatures for this weekend, with temperatures likely to remain below zero through at least Monday morning and lows dipping near 30 degrees below zero.
Itasca State Park's 22nd annual Winter Bird Count Monday was part of a much larger effort to help collect data about how climate change is threatening bird populations nationwide and how conservation groups can work together to protect their habitat.
When Ruby Pearl Schott was born to Arthur and Edith Maybary three miles west of Ponsford on Christmas Eve in 1917, Ponsford was a booming town with a bank and business district. In those days, horses were the primary mode of transportation and communication was in person or by mailing a letter with a three-cent stamp. Cars, paved roads, telephones, television, computers and the internet are just a few of the changes that have happened in Schott's lifetime.
A new playground in Nevis means new accessibility requirements are required by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). It could cost as much as $75,000 for the Halvorson Beach area alone. The park had been grandfathered-in because it was built before ADA requirements were in effect. The city may be able to procure grant funding to help with the cost, which could be spread out over 10 years to allow the city to budget for this and other accessibility issues at Muskie Park and the Municipal Liquor Store.
A Christmas Eve flight in 1964 that was chosen to alert the world that Santa's sleigh was heading from the North Pole to the U.S. was the most memorable experience for B-52 bomber crew member Archie Henderson during his 23-year military career. Now 88 years old, Henderson of rural Osage joined the Air Force in 1947 and was called to active duty in 1951.
Christmas goodies are part of what makes the season special. The aroma of cookies coming out of the oven in a cozy kitchen brings people together to sample the goodies and spend time together over a cup of hot tea or coffee. My mom, Elsie, always welcomes everyone in the family home with a good supply of treats. My niece, Noelani, is a college freshman this year and will receive a "Grandma care package" of her favorite mint brownies and snowballs before finals, a treat she has been enjoying on every visit to North Dakota since she was a small child.
Santa and Mrs. Claus will be greeting visitors from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Bella Caffe on Third Street in Park Rapids on Dec. 9, 16 and 23. Weather permitting, Santa's sleigh will be parked outside. Coats will be needed for any outdoor photos this weekend—unlike last Saturday when balmy weather made it possible for Avery Oyster, 5, and Addison Oyster, 3, of Menahga to pose in their Christmas dresses.
A "Mitten Tree" in the lobby of the Park Rapids Enterprise will help keep little fingers warm this winter. Area residents are invited to stop by and hang a warm pair of mittens or gloves to help decorate the tree and share the spirit of giving this holiday season. Mahube-Otwa Head Start and Century Elementary School will receive the mittens in January and distribute them to children who need them. Sizes infant to children's size 6 are desired. Office hours at the Enterprise are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays and 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Fridays.
The need for quality, affordable child care in the Park Rapids area is important not only to parents, but to business owners as well. "Affordable, quality child care is a key factor in having productive employees and youth that are ready to enter the workforce," Business Development Specialist Jessica Beyer of First Children's Finance told business and community leaders who met to address the issue Thursday. The meeting was the first of three work sessions designed to bring various groups together to brainstorm ideas to meet local child care needs.