Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
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GRAND FORKS - Corporate leaders of American Crystal Sugar Co. met behind closed doors with shareholders Wednesday morning in Grand Forks and Fargo to talk about the ongoing battle over genetically modified sugar beets. CEO David Berg talked to the shareholders but had to leave town after the meetings and wasn't available for comment Wednesday evening, said Jeff Schweitzer, American Crystal spokesman.
The ice dams cometh. Warming temperatures may be good for the soul, but they're a pain on the roof. From the Metrodome to downtown main streets, including Park Rapids, roofs, porches and awnings are falling victim to mounds of winter snow. That's only part of the hazard. "We've had several calls of people falling off their roofs," acknowledged a Cass County dispatcher, including a man in Walker who fell this past weekend clearing snow from a roof. Hubbard County has had no such reported incidents, authorities say.
Three people were arrested Feb. 11 for alleged possession and sale of marijuana in the Walker area. All three are being held in the Cass County jail. According to the Cass County Sheriff's Department: Officers seized a large amount of cash and 68.1 grams of pot. The arrests led to a search warrant being executed a residence near Remer, where 168 grams of processed marijuana were seized. The defendants are Melissa S. Delaney. 28 and Justin Michael Best, 33, both of Bemidji, and Robert Linwood Gaskins, 52, of Remer. Felony charges are pending against the trio.
If necessity is the mother of invention, then what's laziness? An equally powerful motivational tool, says Tom Roering. His Wilcraft Sportsman Vehicle was a huge hit at last weekend's Park Rapids American Legion Community Fishing Derby. There are some products so nifty, they just sell themselves. A spin around Fish Hook Lake proved that. You jump behind the driver's wheel and steer your fish house to the fish. Need to get in tighter? Missed the hot spot?
A conditional use permit for a development on Lake Hattie will be before the Hubbard County Board of Commissioners Wednesday. As with most planned unit developments, this 24-unit project on a peninsula between Lake Hattie and Beauty Lake in northwestern Hubbard County is controversial. Residents in the area question whether the site is too close to a wetland area. Developer James Schwartzbauer has proposed the PUD to cater to guests who "want a quiet wilderness retreat experience." The Hubbard County Planning Commission sent the CUP on to the county board on a 7-2 vote to recommend app
They say there's no such thing as bad press. So the Park Rapids Enterprise is reluctantly embracing its national lampooning Feb. 2 at the hands of late night comic David Letterman. The Enterprise's infamous incidents, or rather, the way they were published, tickled the funnyman's funny bones. The item was about a caller reporting a man and his dog in a ditch after a car went off the road. The paper dutifully printed the incident as submitted by the Hubbard County Sheriff's Department.
Itasca-Mantrap customers will see an increase in their electricity rates in April brought on by rising wholesale costs. "The 2010 and 2011 wholesale cost of power increase will add $790,973 to our operating costs," wrote CEO Michael Monsrud in the February Member newsletter. "The board just confirmed the rate increase at last month's board meeting," said Member Services Manager Jared Echternach.
The future of emergency radio transmissions is quietly going up in a snow-covered field in Henrietta Township. Workers are installing the first of a series of 330-foot ARMER radio towers, the acronym for the Allied Radio Matrix for Emergency Response. A multi-million dollar statewide conversion to narrowband radio equipment is underway that will transition all systems by Jan. 1, 2013.
More than 1,750 people, dressed like a casting call for the movie "Fargo," surged out onto frozen Fish Hook Lake Saturday for the 13th annual Park Rapids Community Fishing Derby. With volunteers, their numbers easily surpassed 2,000 on ice. The catch and release festival registered 286 fish that anglers were willing to take to the weigh station. Hundreds more, many as small as the live bait used, were chucked quickly back into the drink. "Are you kidding me?" said one man eyeing a two-inch perch on his line. Then he thought better of it and asked his girlfriend to snap a photo.
Minnesota State Patrol officers said it was "a miracle" no one was injured when two vehicles collided east of Snellman Monday afternoon. Officers on the scene were trying to piece together how the accident occurred just before 3 p.m. on Highway 34. The vehicles ended up more than one-eighth of a mile apart on the north shoulder, both facing east. Firefighters from Carsonville, North Memorial Ambulance personnel and troopers from Park Rapids and Detroit Lakes responded.