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WEDNESDAY - JUNE 19, 2013
POLK COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OK THE PURCHASE OF HIGHWAY BONDS OF SIX MILLION DOLLARS
The Polk County Commissioners met on Tuesday afternoon in Crookston and passed a resolution to purchase state aid highway bonds for $6,075,000 to be used over the next three years. “We have looked at this for a while and we have done it in the past. The $6 million would allow us to do projects earlier than planned in our five year rotation," said Polk County Board Chairman Craig Buness. "We can bond for about one percent now and that is less than the cost of inflation so it makes sense. This opportunity gives us the time to get upfront on new construction and maintain what roads we have.” The Commissioners will consider the award of the bonds at their meeting on July 23.
The Commissioners also approved an application for inclusion in 2014 state bonding for the solid waste facilities retrofit project in Fosston. “We want to do some expansion and upgrading the equipment at the solid waste transfer station so we could process more recycling materials from the counties that contract with us," said Polk County Environmental Services Director Jon Stinar. "We would also handle more waste, spread our overhead over more tons coming to the facility and maintain or drop the tip fee. So we requested bond dollars from the state.”
The Commissioners approved the purchase of a new truck for the transfer station roll off containers along with two new 58 yard roll off containers.
Michelle Cote, Director of Polk County Property Records informed the Board that a new plat book should be ready next month so the board agreed to sell the books for $30.00.
Renovations at the Law Enforcement Center in Crookston continue with relocation of the Dispatch Center getting closer to completion. “We have the major phase nearing completion where we made improvements on one side of the building, moved the staff and will now complete that area," said Polk County Administrator Chuck Whiting. "We are moving the Dispatch Center back to a bigger area with more consoles in the 24 hour operation. We want all their attention on dispatching and the board agreed to make modifications on the design of the $2 million project.” The change order for the dispatch center is $153,000.
Oslo area townships on the Minnesota and North Dakota sides of the river sent a letter to the Polk County Board as they are forming a border Township Association to work on river issues and the bridge at Oslo. They want a new modern bridge instead of rehabilitating the old bridge. The board discussed the letter, but took no action.
Mark Dietz was hired to replace Jan Skyberg as the Polk County Building and Grounds Director. Skyberg retired on June 14 and Dietz will start on June 24 after leaving his job with Bergstrom Electric.
Sarah Reese, Polk County Public Health Director, informed the board of a two year grant received for family planning projects in the amount of $168,718.00 for Polk, Norman and Mahnomen counties.
BECKY KOFOED ONE OF TWO CANDIDATES TO FILL THE WARD 3 COUNCIL VACANCY
Two candidates, Gary Willhite and Beck Kofoed will be interviewed by Crookston City Council members and staff for the position of alderman for Crookston’s Ward 3 on Thursday evening. Ward 3 residents were solicited by Mayor David Genereux to fill the spot being vacated by Keith Mykleseth until the next election.
Kofoed is a Crookston native who wants to serve her community. “It is the community I call home, I work in Ward 3 at Villa St. Vincent as the Human Resource Director and I live on Barrette Street and this is an opportunity to serve the ward as I am looking for volunteer opportunities,” said Kofoed.
Kofoed graduated from Crookston High School in 2000. “I then served five years in the United States Navy, came back in 2005 to attend UMC and received a degree in communications and associate degree as a diet technician," said Kofoed. ?I served as an intern at the Crookston Chamber of Commerce which was great for networking. I started at the Villa in 2009 as the HRA director. In the Navy I was a Aviation second class Petty officer air warfare qualified with lots of training and a quality assurance officer. Ward 3 is a newly developed area and we must sustain that area with the housing program at Barrette Estates. We want to make them all successful. The downtown square project gets my support and I hope we can keep the project moving forward so the area can be utilized."
Retaining UMC students and others to remain in Crookston has been a opportunity that should be cultivated by everyone in the community added Kofoed, who is married to Steve and they have a young son.
After the city interviews on Thursday evening, the committee will make a recommendation to the city council for appointment as the Ward 3 council person.
THE UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA BOARD OF REGENTS APPROVE A TUITION FREEZE FOR UNDERGRADUATES WHICH HELPS UMC
The University of Minnesota Board of Regents met recently and the main discussion was on the tuition freeze for students. “The tuition freeze was the big item on the budget for 2014 which was approved by the regents," said University of Minnesota Crookston (UMC) Chancellor Dr. Fred Wood. "The freeze is for undergraduate students, there were increases for graduate and international students on some of the campuses. This means that the Pell grants going up a bit and the state grant going up substantially which means lower income students will play less about 6 percent than last year and UMC has the lowest tuition in the system so this is good news for the students.”
The regents asked to have the graduation rates improved. “We will continue to look at how that will work at UMC as we have been working on graduation rates already," said Wood. "Research was on the agenda and UMC will be a part of food safety issues and water issues that were in the budget."
The bonding bill for 2014 was of interest to UMC. “This includes the Wellness Center for UMC so that is good for us and the chances are good that something will be passed as it is an election year so we will work hard to convince the legislators to pass this as it will be good for the students in recruitment and student success on campus,” said Dr. Wood.
The UMC campus was highlighted by the board of regents on Internationalization. “UMC has a long history of international student recruitment and students studying abroad," said Chancellor Wood. “The curriculum has been highlighted also with a new certificate in Finance was approved and a bachelor’s of science in Business Management will be offered on line so these are all good to serve the students as requested by the regional workforce.”
There are several construction projects going on at the Crookston campus in the buildings and some landscaping is being done around Heritage Hall. The flower gardens are in full bloom for all the summer activities and reunions which are on the calendar and Dr. Wood invites everyone to come and take a drive to check out the flower gardens.
TUESDAY - JUNE 18, 2013
BIDS TOO HIGH FOR A PAVILION ON THE DOWNTOWN SQUARE, SO CITY COUNCIL CANCELS SPECIAL MEETING
The Crookston City Council had scheduled a special council meeting for Monday evening to discuss the quotes for the downtown square building, but the quotes came in higher than the council had approved which was $100,000. Crookston Mayor Dave Genereux cancelled the meeting at that point. “The meeting was to discuss quotes on the downtown square and in previous discussions if the quotes were above the $100,000 budget we would go back to the table for discussion," said Crookston City Administrator Tony Chladek. "The two quotes were over $100,000, near the $150,000 range so the consensus was to put it on the Ways and Means Committee for more discussion. Some council members were also not able to attend so the Mayor made the decision to cancel the meeting and we will discuss it again on June 24.”
The Crookston Ways and Means Committee meeting was also cancelled. They were to discuss the Bush grant options which they will do later. “The grant was an idea and the meeting was to help us hit the July 11 deadline," said Chladek. "There will be a deadline later in the year so there is no rush so the meeting was cancelled also.”
GARY WILLHITE AND BECKY KOFOED TO BE INTERVIEWED FOR VACANT CITY COUNCIL POSITION
The Ward 3 position for the Crookston City Council is open due to the resignation of Council Member Keith Mykleseth who has moved to Bemidji.
Two residents of that ward have expressed interest in the council position, Gary Willhite and Becky Kofoed.
Gary Willhite (pictured right) is director of Residential Life and Security Services at UMC and has served on the council in the past.
Willhite said his concern for the city and its future are one of the reasons he would like to get back on the council. “I certainly have concern for the future of Crookston and have lived in Ward 3 for 34 years," said Willhite. "I enjoy living in Crookston and with my past experience I can be helpful. This week the mosquito attack needs to be taken care of and I know the city has a plan. Ward 3 has concerns about the area of the Professional Building and the former Lincoln school is looking tough in the neighborhood. We look for Crookston to keep up their infrastructure and street with te plan to get 16 new homes in Crookston will help everyone out.“
Willhite and another interested candidate, Becky Kofoed will be interviewed by members of the current City Council on Thursday and will make a recommendation for the full council to act on at their June 24 regular City Council Meeting. Whillhite would like to serve the residents of Crookston again on the council. “The downtown Square discussion is interesting. The concept is excellent with questions on how to do it. I have questions on the cost and putting a building on property I don’t know, but we have legal experts to give advice, I don’t have details on the rental property and what it could cost and getting it together for Ox Cart Days might be rushing it so those are my questions.”
KROX RADIO and kroxam.com will have an interview with Becky Kofoed on Wednesday.
ANNE RASMUSSEN SWORN IN AS A NEW DISTRICT 9 JUDGE
Anne Rasmusson of Crookston was sworn in as a District 9 Judge on Friday in the Mahnomen Courtroom. Rasmusson left her law practice in Crookston after being selected for the judgeship by Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton. Rasmussen will be chambered in the Mahnomen Courthouse and cover the circuit in the district which includes Crookston so will continue to live in Crookston.
Anne Rasmusson Anne getting sworn in as the new judge (Picture by Roger Moe)
SUMMER IS BLOOMING AT UMC
The flowers have been planted at the University of Minnesota, Crookston campus and the public is invited to take in their beauty anytime. We have one picture below.
This floral depiction of the first American Flag, just inside the main entrance to UMC.
CROOKSTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE WARNS OF POSSIBLE SCAM
The Crookston Area Chamber of Commerce has been informed that a salesperson is making calls in the community selling city maps and or calendars. This person is claiming an endorsement from the Crookston Chamber. The chamber has not endorsed this or any other offer you may receive. The Chamber often gets requests to take part in these kinds of programs and they always decline. The policy of the chamber is to promote their member businesses through the website, newsletter, weekend happenings, special events and social media. Anyone with questions may call the chamber at 281-4320.
CROOKSTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE TO HOST BLOCK PARTY/CUSTOMER APPRECIATION DAY ON THURSDAY
The Crookston Chamber will continue the Block Party
series with Crookston’s 29th Annual Customer Appreciation Day. The event will
be held on Thursday, June 20 at the Crookston Sports Center, featuring a free
meal, catered by RBJ’s Restaurant. Food will begin being served by volunteers
from sponsoring businesses at 5:00 pm and continue being served until supplies
last. Complimentary meal tickets are available at the following sponsoring
Agassiz Federal Credit Union, AgCountry Farm Credit Services, All Seasons Lube Center, Altru Health System, American Crystal Sugar Company, American Federal Bank, American Legion Club, AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Ampride Convenience Mart, Anderson Beverages Inc., Best Used Trucks of MN, Biermaier Chiropractic Clinic, Brandner Printing, Bremer Bank, Brost Chevrolet Inc., C & R Cleaners & Laundry, Christian Brothers' Ford, Crooks Club, Crookston Building Center, Crookston Daily Times, Crookston Floral & Antiques, Crookston Implement Co., Crookston National Bank, Crookston Pet Clinic, D & D's Thomforde Garden Center, Dennis Koch CFP, Dental Health Center, Drees Riskey & Vallager LTD; Eagle Thrifty White Pharmacy, Crookston Eagles Aerie #873, Edward Jones, Eickhof Columbaria, Erickson Family Dental, Farm Bureau Financial Services, Fleet Distributing Supply, Four Seasons Clothing, Golden Link Senior Center, Happy Joe's Pizza & Ice Cream Parlor, Head East Salon, HN Quality Plumbing, Hugo's, Jack's Electric, KROX Radio Station, Longtin Agency Inc., M & H, Mid-Valley Grain Co-op, Odland Fitzgerald Reynolds & Harbott PLLP, Opticare - Crookston Vision Associates, Otter Tail Power Company, Phil Thompson & Associates, The Prescription Shoppe, Proulx Refrigeration, Rejuv' Salon & Spa, Renu Dental, RiverView Health
Rust, Stock, Rasmusson & Knutson P.A., Odine Smulan Insurance, Crookston Snap Fitness, Stenshoel Houske Funeral Home, SunOpta Grains & Foods Group, Taco John's, Timeless Treasures, Titan Machinery, Torkelson Repair, Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, University of Minnesota Crookston, Villa St. Vincent, Wagner Mobile Welding & Repair Shop, Widman's Candy Shop, Widseth Smith Nolting & Associates and Ye Ole Print Shoppe.
In addition to the food service a number of Crookston businesses will be on hand to demonstrate what they have to offer their customers. Also, grab a hula-hoop and try to win a water bottle while competing in a hula-hoop contest in the arena.
Every Thursday the Crookston Chamber organizes a Walk the Block Scavenger Hunt. Find the Chamber “C” logo at a minimum of three of the participating businesses and you could win a four pack of Crookston Chamber can koozies. Each week the Crookston Chamber of Commerce hosts a “Minute to Win It” game as part of the block party. The first four to successfully complete the “Egg Roll” will win a Crookston Chamber can koozie.
The Crookston Chamber of Commerce Block Party series continues each Thursday through the summer, with the exception of Independence Day. For more information on the block parties please go to www.visitcrookston.com/blockparties.
Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors make three visits in May
Crookston Chamber of Commerce Ambassadors made three visits in the month of May. Chamber Ambassadors pictured are: Mitch Bakken (Tri-Valley Opportunity Council), Jo Bittner (Polk County DAC), Jacey Jensen (Bremer Bank),Donna Christianson (Greenberg Realty), and Andy Oman (State Farm Insurance).
The group of Chamber Ambassadors paid a visit to City Hall as the group welcomed the new City of Crookston Accountant Erin Zejdlik.
The ambassadors then made their way over to the VFW Post 1902 to welcome the new manager of the facility, Eric Ambuehl.
For the final May Ambassadors visits, the group paid a visit to the new location of Oman State Farm Insurance at 423 N Main St. Along with Andy Oman, performing double duty as a Crookston Chamber Ambassador for May and owner of Oman State Farm Insurance, pictured here with the Ambassadors are: Brooke Holtman, DeAnn Skaug, Suzie Coauette, and Jon Oman
CHS STUDENTS ATTEND MINNESOTA GIRLS STATE
Lydia Shafer Carly Welter
The Nels T Wold Post 20 American Legion Auxiliary selected Carly Welter and Lydia Shafer to represent Crookston at Minnesota Girls State on June 10-16 at Bethel College in Arden Hills. The alternates were Maritza Hernandez and Emily Samuelson. They will all be seniors at Crookston High School in the fall. The weeklong experience consisted of participation in the various levels and branches of our Minnesota government. Every girl held an office. There was campaigning and elections. There were precinct caucuses and state conventions. Highlights of the week were the Inauguration of the Governor, State Constitutional officers and legislative sessions were held in the House and Senate chambers at the State Capitol in St Paul. Mock Trials were held in the Supreme Court chambers.
MOOSE ON THE LOOSE (AGAIN) IN CROOKSTON
Marigold Moose, AKA Katie, has made a return to Crookston, after
spending the last few weeks in the vicinity of the Gentilly bridge. She has been
sighted in several locations across the North side of the city. Crookston Police
Chief Tim Motherway is cautioning the public to steer clear of the moose, as she
is a wild animal and can be aggressive and territorial.
Here we see the moose sunning herself in the grass near Crookston National Bank.
MONDAY - JUNE 17, 2013
VEHICLE STRIKES MAN ON MOBILITY SCOOTER DOWNTOWN CROOKSTON
The Crookston Police were called out on a report of a car
striking a person in a wheel chair at the intersection of South Broadway and
West Fletcher Street at 8:09 Sunday evening. Upon arrival officers found 62
year-old Bruce Blatchford laying in the roadway. Officers provided first
aid until the Crookston Area Ambulance arrived.
The investigation determined that a vehicle driven by Chantel Boyle, 21 yrs of age, was traveling West on Fletcher St., stopped at the stop sign, then proceeded, striking Mr. Blatchford, who was on an electric mobility cart.
Blatchford was transported to Riverview Hospital by Crookston Area Ambulance, Boyle was charged with failure to yield to a pedestrian in a cross walk.
CROOKSTON CITY COUNCIL TO
LOOK AT BIDS FOR DOWNTOWN SQUARE TONIGHT IN SPECIAL MEETING
The Crookston City Council will meet in a special session Monday night at 7 p.m. in the council chambers with the meeting open to the public. The agenda is a consideration of pavilion options and awarding construction contract..
Last week the council approved a severance agreement with the owners of the downtown square property as the city plans to put up a building which would be owned by the city. Councilman Tom Vedbraaten opposed the action expressing concerns about the downtown square project (Pavilion) where the city plans to build a building for events during the year including the farmers market. The main concern for Vedbraaten is the fact that the city does not own the property. “We don’t own the land and people I talk to say go ahead and build. There are a lot of pluses and minuses,” said Vedbraaten. “I would not do this with my own money unless I owned the land. There could be some problems down the road, the severance agreement came up tonight and I am not sure anyone really understands it.”
Vedbraaten wants to move forward and get quotes as he wants to help get more business downtown. “We should move forward, but who knows how much will be in the building or what it going to be taken to meet the price,” said Vedbraaten. “Everyone I talk to including myself thinks getting more business downtown is a good idea but we are not share that putting a building on someone else’s property is the right thing to do.” The Ways and Means Committee extended the date of excepting quotes until June 17 and agreed to give information on the project to anyone who requests a packet so they can prepare a quote. The council has agreed to limit the cost of a building at $100,000.
TRI-VALLEY OPPORTUNITY COUNCIL SUMMER FUN BUS AVAILABLE AGAIN IN CROOKSTON AND TRF
Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc. Summer Fun Bus is available again in the
communities of Crookston and Thief River Falls. Since the program began, numbers
have continued to rise. So far this
summer, there are nearly 40 riders in Crookston and over 50 participants in
Thief River Falls. Summer Fun Bus passes and punch cards are still available by
calling Tri-Valley Transportation at 1-800-201-3432.
The Tri-Valley Summer Fun Bus runs from June 1 until August 31 and is for riders aged five to 18. Passes are $55 per child or a maximum of $120 for a family in Crookston. In Thief River Falls, passes are $55 per child or a maximum of $125 for a family. Young riders can use the Summer Fun Bus for summer recreation activities, appointments, trips to the library, and summer school to name just a few options.
Safety comes first on the Tri-Valley Summer Fun Bus. All the children ride in the front of the bus and are dropped off and picked up at their destination or event. In addition, all Tri-Valley buses are equipped with a camera system to help ensure the safety of the passengers and driver.
For more information on Summer Fun Bus passes call 1-800-201-3432 or stop by the Tri-Valley Transit Office in Crookston at 1345 Fairfax Avenue or in Thief River Falls at 524 Barzen Avenue.
Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc. is a not-for-profit community action agency headquartered in Crookston, Minn. In existence since 1965, Tri-Valley provides services in 84 counties in Minnesota and Northeast North Dakota. The mission of Tri-Valley is to provide opportunities to improve the quality of life for people and communities. For more information on services offered and job opportunities at Tri-Valley visit the website at www.tvoc.org, follow them on Facebook at www.facebook.com/TVOCInc or on Twitter at @TriValley_TVOC.
EAGLE THRIFTY WHITE DRUG CONTRIBUTES TO RIVERVIEW'S WORK SIMULATOR PROJECT
Eagle Thrifty White Drug and Pharmacy, Crookston, recently made a donation to the RiverView Health Foundation to support the purchase of a functional work simulator for RiverView’s Therapy Department. "This simulator has the capability to replicate dozens, if not 100s, of daily activities,’’ said Lance Norman, vice president of Ancillary Services. "It will allow us the ability to condition and strengthen a patient back to being able to do such work as climbing grain bins again or pushing a lawn mower.’’ The work simulator is a tool for occupational, physical and cardiac pulmonary therapies to help restore a patient’s pre-morbid function through simulation of occupational tasks and overall conditioning. "The benefits are nearly endless in the capability to achieve replication of functional activities for patient’s to assure their safety before they return back to their home or work environment,’’ Norman continued. The functional work simulator also has software capabilities to test a particular limb and compare it to the opposite limb that may be injured or reconstructed to determine what percentage of deficit the patient continues to have. This can be down to 1 percent accuracy, and is used to allow the surgeon a better understanding of the patient’s current physiological status and/or joint health. "I get extremely excited when a member of our team identifies a project that can accomplish so much,’’ said RiverView Foundation Director Kent Bruun. "I thank Eagle Thrifty White Drug for recognizing this simulator as a ‘champion’ for RiverView’s Therapy Department, the community and the patients we serve.’’
Pictured above, left to right: Lance Norman, vice president of Ancillary Services, Steve #Olson, Eagle Thrifty White Drug, and Kent Bruun, RiverView Foundation director.
POLK COUNTY PUBLIC HEALTH TO PRESENT ON THE ROAD HEALTHIER EATING PROJECT ON SATURDAY
Polk County Public Health is
sponsoring On The Road To Healthier Eating with a project on Saturday, June 22
according to Kirsten Fagerlund, Polk County Nurse, “The statewide health
improvement program grant is working together to get people to eat healthier and
eat more local foods through the farmers markets and learn basic cooking skills.
We are sponsoring an event on Saturday, June 22 at 9:30 in the morning gathering
at the Crookston Downtown Square where we will have a bus to travel to the
Farmers Market in Mentor to shop healthier and learn to shop at local stores and
then do some food preparation and learn skills to healthier eating until 3:30
Register by calling 281-3385 and then show up at the Crookston Downtown Square at 9:30 a.m. for the trip to Mentor.
LORRAINE AMIOT IS THE EXPERIENCED AMERICAN OF THE MONTH IN CROOKSTON
Lorraine Amiot is the Crookston Experienced American for the month of June and will be honored on Friday, June 21 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. at the Golden Link Senior Citizens Center in Crookston.
Lorraine is a 90 year old vibrant active lady in the community who raised one son by herself. “I have been on many journeys and enjoyed it all. I was 27 years old when my husband passed away and I raised my 8 month old son who was my pride and joy,” said Amiot.
Lorraine worked at St. Vincent Rest Home for 21 years and Mount St. Benedict for 5 years. Her son is retired and living in the Twin Cities, “I have 2 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren in the Twin Cities area so I hope I get to see them more often now,” said Amiot.
She volunteers at the church and the Golden Link and is prepared to move to the Villa Vincent Rest Home when she has to leave her home. Amiot can be found at the Golden Link often playing cards and volunteering to help out with activities. Everyone is welcome to the reception on Friday, June 21 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. at the Golden Link.
CROOKSTON CHAMBER OF COMMERCE BEAUTIFICATION COMMITTEE COMPLETES FIRST ROUND OF JUDGING
Chamber Beautification Committee has completed the first round of judging in the
annual beautification award contest. Each year a contest is held which judges
three categories; storefront business, landscaped business and also a public
institution/church category. The second round of judging will be held on
Thursday, July 19th.
These are the finalists in the first round of judging: (* after the business denotes a perfect 100% score in the first round of judging.)
Polk County DAC *
Villa St. VIncent
Crookston National Bank
Ag Country Farm Credit Services
American Federal Bank
Riverview Health Care
Ceasons Bait and Tackle*
This is Sew Broadway/Crazy Kiln*
Cycle of Threads
Edward D Jones
Willow and Ivy
Dennis Koch CFP
Ye Ole Print Shoppe
Crookston Public Library
Cathedral of Immaculate Conception
Trinity Lutheran Church
Bible Baptist Church
St. Paul's Lutheran Church
Valley Christian Fellowship
Church of Christ
Evangelical Covenant Church
Red River Valley Juvenile Center
CROOKSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY TO HOLD SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE THE NEXT TWO WEEKS
Crookston Public Library cordially invites area kids, teens and families to Dig Into Reading this summer at the library. Check out our full schedule of events for all ages.
Monday, June 24 from 2 to 4:00 p.m. - #iCreateArt - Summer Teen Art Class - Make fun, simple and creative crafts and artwork. For students grades 7-12 (fall 2013) No cost. Pre-registration preferred but not required. Come when you can. Call Library at 281-4522 to register.
Tuesday, June 25 at 10:30 a.m. - Fundamentally Female...The Bonds of Sisterhood - Join Renee Rongen and the women of the "Birthday Club" featured in Renee's book Fundamentally Female. We'll learn of the 45+ year friendship the women share and discuss the importance of lifelong female friendships. Morning tea will be served.
Tuesday, June 25 at 6:30 p.m. - Spine Crackers Book Club - Join them for a fun and lively book discussion. June's book is UNBROKEN by Laura Hillenbrand.
Wednesday, June 26 at 2:00 p.m.- Summer Reading Program Gnome Sweet Gnome
Join us for a wee bit of mischief and a fun filled, adventurous afternoon. Dawn from D & D's Thomforde Garden Center will bring miniature horses for this event.
Thursday, June 27 at 10:00 a.m.- Storytime - Join them for preschool storytime.
Saturday, June 29 at 1:00 p.m.- Family Matinee - Join them for a family movie matinee each Saturday.
For more information on this and other programs, please call 218-281-4522 or visit your library at 110 N. Ash. Information is also available online at www.larl.org. Crookston Public Library is a branch of Lake Agassiz Regional Library.
FRIDAY - JUNE 14, 2013
CROOKSTON SCHOOL BOARD AND ADMINISTRATORS HAVE AN EYE OPENING TOUR OF SCHOOL BUILDINGS AND POSSIBLE REPAIR BILL
The Crookston School Board held a
working session with Johnson Controls on Thursday starting with a tour of
Highland School, the swimming pool and then the Crookston High School before
they had a study session on options for the school district. Johnson
Controls was commissioned by the school board to look at all the buildings in
the school district and present what improvements should be made and put some
costs to those improvements. The total proposed
projects cost was $16 million with $10.2 million levy eligible through Health and Safety
and Abatement. The Health and Safety and Abatement methods are where the
school board can spend the money without going to the school district residents
without their approval. Crookston School Board members Frank Fee and Keith Bakken
said that even if the school board could use the Health and Safety and Abatement
for $10.2 million of the proposed $16 million in projects they
would go to the district residents and make sure they were behind the projects
before they even thought about using that method of funding. Roofs would
have to be repaired at the pool and the High School. Highland
School and the pool need new boilers and total repair projects needed at the
pool are in the area of $3 million, which caught the board off guard, a bit.
On the tour the Crookston School Board members saw the boiler room and air exchange system at Highland School where both items will need some repair sooner than later. At the Swimming Pool, the board visited two rooms, one was the mechanical room with the boiler, that noticeably needs replacement (see pictures below) and the water filtration system. Johnson Controls said the school district should look at getting several repairs and upgrades including a new air exchange and humidity control system. The pool tour ended when they looked at the outside of the building where brick was eroding in several parts of the building. The final stop was back at the high school where they went up to see the geothermal system and air exchange system, both could use some upgrades to help keep the air healthy and moving through the building. Superintendent Chris Bates said the tour was a learning experience for everyone. “It went well,” said Bates. “The issues are complicated with mechanical systems at Highland and the pool so we sat down and looked at the plans from Johnson Controls and could remember what we saw on the tour.”
Options are on the table for the school board to examine as they make a choice on how to move forward. “Johnson Controls listed everything that needs fixing and in some places there were choices at Highland about windows which open and those that don’t,” said Bates. “Another question was, are you interested in dehumidification that takes out the moisture, so there are some choices in their list.”
Financing such large projects are a major concern. “That is the question, choices like financing over 10 or 15 years or even 20 years,” said Bates. “The biggest thing for the board and myself is to do work without changing taxes for the people. Projects are staggering like the cost of a boiler for Highland School at $300,000, but the building has the original boiler. So when you start looking at roofs, parking lots and things like that it is a lot for the board to digest. We have good information to examine and then get back together in about ten days.”
The next school board meeting is on Monday, June 24 at 5:00 p.m. at the High school choir orchestra room. After the board members and administration have about 10 days to go over the figures and projects, the school board will have a working session with Johnson Control members the morning after the next regularly scheduled board meeting, Tuesday, June 25 at 7:00 AM in the district office to select which projects should or have to be done and the costs associated with the improvements and how those costs would/will affect the school district.
The tour of Highland School with a stop at the boiler room The chlorine has done a number on the pool water filtration system
The original boiler in need of replacement at the pool One corner of the pool building where the brick is eroding
The tour started in the upper level of Highland School The brick of another corner of the pool eroding
CROOKSTON PARK BOARD STILL LOOKING AT HIRING AN ARENA MARKETING PERSON AFTER IT WAS INITIALLY REJECTED
The Crookston Park Board met on
Thursday and the meeting got into a heated discussion on the work of the task
force which had a plan to market the Crookston Sports Center, but after a joint
meeting with the city council and Crookston Housing and Economic Development
Authority, the plan to hire a person to do marketing was rejected. Michelle
Christopherson Task Force Chairman asked the group to convene again and examine
the request again. Park and Recreation Director Scott Riopelle said a meeting
will be arranged. “We are talking once again about a marketing plan so we will
revisit the concept to try and get more activities at the Sports Center,” said
Riopelle. “The Park Board has asked to go over the budget and we will arrange a
The group will examine the budget to see if funds can be found for more marketing. A proposal for a display and memorial wall at the Crookston Sport Center was offered for consideration and staff will look at costs. “We are looking at wall displays throughout the Crookston Sports Center made up of past teams, coaches and other alumni items,” said Riopelle. “The displays would vary in sizes and we are working on the costs and it would like a wall hanging.”
Don and Mary Cavalier asked the board to look for a location to place a peace pole in the city which is being sponsored by the Crookston Rotary. A location will be sought with more discussion with UMC staff and students.
MNDOT HOLDS AN OPEN HOUSE TO UPDATE THE PUBLIC ON THE HIGHWAY 2 PROJECT THROUGH TOWN
Representatives from the Minnesota
Department of Transportation and Contractor Interstate Improvement of Faribault
hosted a public meeting on the reconstruction of Highway 2 running through
Crookston from the area of Happy Joe’s to Memorial Drive.
“The contractor is on site and they are doing concrete repairs at the depths of the joints. We are working on the Robert Street Bridge to Happy Joe’s stretch now,” said Ross Hendrickson, state inspector. “Later we will start at Memorial Drive and go to Arby’s before finishing the project in downtown Crookston.”
There are two lanes open now and Hendrickson asks the public to slow down. “We have many workers in the area and safety is a main concern,” said Hendrickson. “Drivers should slow down and avoid the area if possible by taking Fairfax into Crookston.”
Jerry Monger, project manager for
Interstate Improvement, said the Crookston project is combined with one in East
Grand Forks and Halstad, “The work is labor intensive with about 15 workers
doing the preliminary repairs and the big equipment should come next week to
level out the street,” said Monger. “The contract is for so many working days so
good weather will move the project along faster.”
When the project is complete motorists will experience a smoother ride and safer highway. Cost of the Crookston Project is $2.4 million.
EVONNE WOLD NAMED VICE PRESIDENT OF EICKHOF COLUMBARIA
Evonne Wold, Accountant at Eickhof Columbaria has been named Vice President. Her responsibilities will include overseeing shop operations, finance, inventory, human resources, quality, and engineering. A native of Thief River Falls, MN she earned a degree from the University of Minnesota-Crookston in Accounting and Business Computer Systems. Prior to beginning at Eickhof in 2008, she was employed in manufacturing at DEE, Inc. in Crookston; P.H. Glatfelter in PA; Bridgeman Creameries and Simplot both in Grand Forks. Eickhof Columbaria located in Crookston designs and builds best-in-class, customized memorial systems for those who have chosen cremation as their final disposition. The company provides innovative solutions for cemeteries, religious institutions, government jurisdictions and other entities involved in offering burial services to the public.
Evonne Wold in the Eickhof Columbaria shop in Crookston
BUSINESSES ON MAIN STREET PARTICIPATE IN THE MAIN STREET MINGLE
From south to north, the Main Street Mingle stretched from the
Irishman's Shanty to Bridge Street Candle Company and Tuxedos by Savvi. Many
businesses all along Main Street in Crookston were open during the block party
and offered great discounts and promotions to their customers. The Irishman’s
Shanty had a booth set up in the empty on the corner of
Main and 2nd selling tacos in a bag, hot dogs, beverages and more.
Businesses taking part in the Main Street Mingle were Aspen Chiropractic, Beggg’s Insurance Agency, Bridge Street Candle Co. and Tuxedos by Savvi, Crookston Eye Clinic, Crookston Paint & Glass, Crookston Snap Fitness, Crookston United Insurance, Eagle Thrifty White Pharmacy, Erickson Embroidery & Design, Golden Link Senior Center, Irishman’s Shanty, Longtin Agency, Montague’s Flower Shop and Oman State Farm Insurance.
A few pictures from the event are below.
The Irishman's Shanty was busy serving up food and refreshments Nate Lubarski of Crookston United Insurance
Ken Longtin had his office open and was serving up refreshments The Crookston Eye Clinic was set up at the park in downtown
ENBRIDGE HOLDS A SAFETY SESSION IN CENTRAL PARK
Crookston’s Central Park was a busy
place on Thursday with over 20 vehicles and equipment belonging to Enbridge
Pipeline who are doing a safety exercise in the park and on the river. “We do
this about three times a year,” said Haarsager. “We started at our office in
Grand Forks this morning and then traveled to Crookston with the emergency
The Enbridge Crew worked in Central Park all day to get hands on training and experience for the new workers. “The older crew members have a chance to get more practice, every location and scenario is different that is why Central Park is a control point for Enbridge,” said Haarsager. “That is why we are here practicing on the water, we want to have a handle on any incident that could happen. We had a safety meeting this morning, so we want to prepare for anything, the pipelines are buried three feet under the ground, that is why we encourage people to call before they dig at the 811 number, in case they hit a pipeline we could have an incident.”
Enbridge has a lot of safety precautions and a response team that works hard to train and be ready for any scenario.
CROOKSTON PARK AND REC CLUB KID PARTICIPANTS TOUR CROOKSTON BUSINESSES AND GET TO RIDE IN A COP CAR
The Crookston Park and Rec Club Kid participants toured businesses in Crookston on Thursday, June 13 and had a special treat, a ride in a Crookston Police Car with the sirens on in downtown Crookston. The video below shows one of the rides.
Some of the Club Kid participants in the back of the cop car Officer Don Rasicot shows off one of the new squad cars to the kids
Club Kid participants get a ride in a Crookston Police car - click above to view.
GRAND FORKS COUNTY ROAD 7 WILL BE CLOSED FOR TWO MONTHS STARTING JUNE 19
According to the Polk County
Highway Department, Grand Forks County Road No. 7 will be closed for
approximately two months starting Wednesday, June 19 for bridge reconstruction
fro 6th Street NE, 1 mile west to 7th Street NE. Truck traffic to utilize
Anyone desiring further information should contact the Polk County Highway Department in Crookston at (218) 281-3952.
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