Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers Hubbard County, courts and breaking news.
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More than 600 kids, in a crowd of 2,000 people, lined the sidewalk along Nevis' Muskie Park Saturday in an Easter egg hunt that would rival another one held out east in a big White House. A block-long, knee-high wave of pre-school humanity surged through the rope lines at 1 p.m.
When the Developmental Achievement Center's Salvage Depot opens next month, it is anticipated the new business will co-exist with the Henrietta Mall, not compete with it. The "mall" is the euphemism given to the South Transfer Station's solid waste repository, off Henrietta Avenue in Park Rapids.
Nevis firefighters doused a grass fire Tuesday afternoon caused by a homeowner who'd dumped the ashes from his wood stove on a debris pile hours earlier. "I guess there must have been some cinders still in there," said Romke Zylstra, who lives off Highway 34 east of Nevis. "When I got home I saw the smoke and thought my barn was on fire," Zylstra said.
There's a military adage that when the going gets rough, you send in the Marines to do the heavy lifting. An injured trumpeter swan unable to make the winter migration from Lake Hattie, northwest of Pine River, owes his new life to those brave men. For purposes of this story, we've dubbed him Jarhead. The male cynget was shot by a hunter last fall and began to deteriorate.
Nearly a year after a Park Rapids motorcyclist was killed at a rural intersection the legal process started all over for the teenager driving the car that collided with him. For the family of John Kisner, 42, who was killed when his motorcycle struck the side of Brittany Ann Sayler's car April 17, 2009, the legal developments have taken a frustrating turn. "He we go again," one family member whispered in court Thursday during the proceedings. Sayler, 19, pled guilty in January to failing to yield the right-of-way at the intersection of County Roads 6 and 15. The plea agreement called f
Hubbard County residents lag significantly behind the state, the nation and neighboring counties in returning U.S. Census forms. County residents are also well behind Park Rapids city residents in Census compliance. The county, as of Thursday, had returned 43 percent of forms delivered door to door last month. Park Rapids residents had returned 61 percent, which is closer to the state compliance rate of 60 percent. The national return rate is at 52 percent. Neighboring counties also did better than Hubbard County.
Hubbard County may not be able to recoup the $200,000 it paid for a tax recording and billing software program two years ago that it eventually abandoned. As the county researched suing the Michigan-based company called Manatron, it encountered some obstacles, said county coordinator Jack Paul. "We're not doing anything with them," Paul said this week.
An accused bank robber said he likely would serve as his own attorney because he can't afford to hire one. Edward Joseph Lowen, 53, a rural resident of Hubbard County, has been relatively quiet in the courtroom up until Monday, when he appeared for his scheduled omnibus hearing. He had many concerns and questions for District Judge Paul Rasmussen. "He is unrepresented at this time," said hubbard County Attorney Don Dearstyne.
The tick season has arrived in the northland with warm weather, but tick-borne diseases may actually be remnants of 2009, especially in dogs. In the past week, Dr. Mia Long, owner of Ark Animal Hospital outside of Park Rapids, has seen two patients on an emergency basis with tick borne diseases (TBD) caused by bites that likely occurred last fall. Trooper John, an 8½-year old English Springer spaniel, started limping on his hind leg March 22, said owner David Allman of Menahga. By the next night he was critically ill. "He couldn't even get up," Allman recalled.