Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
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Hubbard County Board of Adjustment members are beginning to feel the strain of making the close calls on lakeshore development. Board members are pausing longer to suggest a course of action, trying to hammer out more compromises. Will granting one or two variances to build in the shore impact zone invite criticism and an expectation they will and should be granted if the encroachment is slight? "This will be the second variance you will have granted in the shore impact zone," said COLA president Dan Kittilson during BOA's monthly meeting Monday. The Hubbard County Coalition of Lake As
A dozen of Hubbard County's finest tested their strength and agility Wednesday in a team building and trust exercise. Most of the Hubbard County Sheriff's Department reported for duty at the Character Challenge Course on Hubbard County Road 40, a high rope exercise course that also tested their lungs. They learned they scream like little girls when they're terrified. Sheriff Cory Aukes paid for the training himself and was quick to note each deputy took unpaid time off to attend the afternoon session, in which deputies and sergeants worked together 30 feet above ground on precarious foot
Hubbard County took preliminary steps to solve its space crunch Thursday, voting to move forward with Requests for Proposals that would eventually plan the relocation of Social Services above the jail. That will free up the third floor of the courthouse building and much of the second floor for office space and the county boardroom, which will move out of the basement. The unused space above the jail is 11,500 square feet.
A GRE worker hooks the power line to the new pole. Work has begun on Itasca-Mantrap Co-op's new Potato Lake Substation on Highway 71 north. Crews there are awaiting the steel. Company officials say the power line will be energized by mid to late December in what Itasca-Mantrap promises will be "a seamless transition."
A Park Rapids man has been charged with three separate counts of assault stemming from a stabbing outside a downtown bar Monday. Joseph Dean Vessey, 21, allegedly stabbed a man in the forehead around 11 p.m. Monday in an argument over money, a criminal complaint states. The altercation took place outside A Better Place bar, reports said. Police were called to the St. Joseph's Area Health Services Emergency Room to find a man with a four-inch gash in his forehead. The victim, who also had scrapes on his back, told officers a fight had broken out in a dispute over money.
A Park Rapids man has been charged with three separate counts of assault stemming from a stabbing outside a downtown bar Monday. Joseph Dean Vessey, 21, allegedly stabbed a man in the forehead around 11 p.m. in an argument over money, a criminal complaint states. He appeared in Hubbard County District Court Thursday. He is charged with First, Second and Third Degree Assault in the case. The victim's head wound was stitched up at St. Joseph's emergency room. Vessey has a number of criminal and alcohol-related convictions in Hubbard County since 2008.
Mushroom hunting can be a dangerous dabble for the unaware. Take this comment from a mushroom website: "Many mushrooms are toxic to the liver and can destroy the liver. Some are lethal and you might as well be looking for rattlesnakes. Don't do it. It's dumb. You not only open yourself to poisoning but there are spiritual entities that you can be opening yourself to that will be embedded in your spirit. Most if not all are malevolent.... "Leave it for witchdoctors of pagan religions to screw with it and not you.
A weekend party following Park Rapids Area High School's homecoming festivities saw two teens admitted to the hospital for acute alcohol intoxication, one male arrested and several juveniles charged. The activities on Discovery Circle come amid a new $1 million alcohol prevention grant to stem underage drinking and a Safe & Sober campaign being conducted by law enforcement officers statewide. "There was nobody in custody," said Hubbard County Attorney Don Dearstyne Monday afternoon.
An omnibus hearing has been set for Oct. 31 in the case of a former Hubbard County resort manager accused of theft. Christopher Lee Dunker, 29, no known address, appeared in Hubbard County District Court Monday with his attorney Bill Thompson, who is from Duluth. Dunker has ties to the Duluth area and is actually under investigation there in a contractor case in which two Duluth homeowners paid $40,000 for a remodeling job two years ago that was never completed.
Firefighers are hoping to make it through the weekend without the countryside burning. Days of red flag warnings, tinder dry conditions and gale force winds have made each spark a cause for concern. The fire danger is very high to extreme right now," said Brad Witkin, DNR fire program forester. Wednesday two grass fires were reported, one near Two Inlets that burned eight acres and a hay loft and another near Nevis that burned a tenth of an acre. The Two Inlets fire briefly re-ignited in high winds Thursday. "It was threatening structures but pretty much the wind took it the other wa