Tuesday morning at 2:30 a.m. the Polk County Sheriff’s Office received a report of a train derailment east of Fisher in the area of 320th Ave SW and 255th St SW (Co 61). Deputies responded to the area and met with BNSF crews on scene.
“At about 2:30 this morning BNSF officials notified us they had a train derailment in rural Fisher of about 14 cars,” said Sergeant Brian Lundeen. “There were no injuries and at this time we don’t have any idea how long it will be until clean-up is complete and roads are open.”
At this time BNSF crews are working to remove the cars and fix the track. The Sheriff’s Office is requesting that the public stay clear of the derailment while BNSF crews are working on site. County 61 from 330th Ave SW to 310th Ave SW will be closed until the cleanup is complete.
No other information will be released at this time.

    The Burlington Northern Santa Fe train that derailed east of Fisher Tuesday morning.  There were no injuries reported.





The Crookston Park Board met Monday night at City Hall and were visited by former Crookston Park and Rec Director, Scott Kleven who has been working on a project that will provide a picture history of Crookston Hockey along the counter in the main rink explained Parks and Rec Director Scott Riopelle. “He’s putting together pictures of all the former teams, along the north side of the event arena,” said Riopelle. “On the east side of the press box we will have the Cathedral team and Pirate girl’s hockey, on the west side we’ll have Central and the current boy’s program.” Kleven said he has all the girls teams pictures completed going back to the first year. He is working on the Cathedral School Blue Wave and the earliest team picture is from 1947. Kleven said if anybody knows of any Cathedral teams before 1947 he would like to know and they will add it to the pictures. The last part of the project will be Crookston Central and Crookston High School teams. Kleven has received help from Cathedral School; Crookston High School; the Crookston Public Library; Larry and Judy Brekken; Doug, Pat, Bill, and Pam Sullivan, and Jerry Fenno. Travis Oliver and the Crookston High School trades class are putting the pictures underneath plexiglass and they will be putting the girls hockey pictures up soon.

The Park Board also discussed outdoor ice rinks and possible locations that might work for a rink with minimal maintenance. With the outdoor rink located next to the Sports Center, one would think it’s a convenient, easily maintained surface. But when it snows, snow removal equipment has to first be used to clear city streets and sidewalks, additionally, the rink acts like a snow fence and collects more than its fair share of blowing snow. The result is it often takes quite a while after a snowfall to get the rink cleared properly. One problem with a rink located at Central Park would be the flooding in the spring and if the boards are frozen in the ground they wouldn't be able to get them out in time. The other problem with putting ice in Central Park is the snowmobile races that will be held in January and possibly again in March. The track for the races would take up most of the area where the ice would be placed. Riopelle said he will look at some possible outdoor rink locations and bring that to the board in the December meeting.

Riopelle also provided the board with an update on amenities throughout the city, and the progress being made on many of the topics listed in the Park Board’s five-year plan. “We have a five-year plan list, some is a wish list, and we were just talking about paths, we had the walking path on the south end, we had a nature trail path out at Kreutzburg,” said Riopelle. “Some of these other things are upgrades on fields, poured concrete at the Sports Center, some are big-ticket items we don’t know if we’ll have the money for, but we have completed over half of the projects in a couple of years.” A couple of projects completed within the past year or two include the sports flooring at the Sports Center, work on many of the parks to make them ADA accessible, added trees to parks, installing the flagpole through donation at Landslide Park and the process continues to transfer ownership of the Community Pool from the School District to the City.

The park board also discussed having the hockey teams and city employees park in the back of the parking lot. Park board member Chris Fee said the Pirate girls hockey team was looking at parking on the west end of the parking lot in front of the arena to leave parking spots open for the public. The boys team currently has the players park in the upper half when they go out of town. Fee asked if we could have the city employees do the same. Riopelle said they will look at it and maybe bring some gravel and make a player only lot to the west of the arena to free up some spaces, especially when the teams are out of town for two games. Riopelle said the players could use the west entrance and it could possibly free up 20 or more parking spots.






The Polk County Board of Commissioners has recently approved the formation of a Youth Advisory Board (YAB) for Polk County Public Health (PCPH).
The Polk-Norman-Mahnomen Community Health Board vision statement is: Communities where all people achieve their optimum health potential. As a youth-serving organization and knowing that youth 0-17 years of age make up approximately 24% of Polk County’s population (US Census Bureau, 2016), Public Health values input from local youth.
The YAB will provide an opportunity for young people in Polk County to become involved in governmental public health services, merging civic engagement and leadership development for high school students. As part of developing future leaders of our communities, youth will plan and implement youth driven, health related programming determined by the YAB.
Polk County youth who are currently in 9th, 10th, or 11th grade are encouraged to apply for a two year, Board of Commissioners appointed term. The goal is to have one youth from each high school in the county on the board during the inaugural year.
For more information and the brief application, please go to the PCPH webpage by clicking here.
If you have any questions, call Kirsten Fagerlund or Sarah Reese, Polk County Public Health at 218-281-3385 or 218-521-7733 (DID).




On Monday, November 19 at approximately 10:43 a.m., the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Nielsville Fire Department, Climax Fire Department and Crookston Area Ambulance responded to a residential fire located at 307 3rd Street West in the town of Nielsville.
Upon Deputies arrival smoke was seen coming from the upper level of the residence. The property owner, Barbara Lundmark and family was safely evacuated from the residence. The Climax Fire Department and the Nielsville Fire Department was able to extinguish the fire. The house sustained significant damage from the fire. No injuries were sustained due to the fire.
The Minnesota State Fire Marshal was contacted and the cause of the fire is under investigation. No further information will be released at this time.




The Crookston Junior High music concert was held on Monday evening at the Crookston High School auditorium.  The Junior High choir, orchestra and band performed.  You can see one number from each of the performances by clicking below.





Each month during the school year, the Kiwanis Club honors fifth graders at Highland and their families with “Terrific Kids” award.  The Kiwanis’ Club recently held their first celebration of the school year honoring three students.  The students are selected by their teachers on the basis of grades, citizenship, a positive attitude toward schoolwork and other students.

Teachers; Kerri Brantner, Kristi Griffin, Erica Uttermark, Susan Garmen Terrific Kids; Autumn Rowan, Gunnar Groven, Cody Demarais

President Rae, Terrific Kid Autumn Rowan, Mom Liz -- Terrific Kid Gunnar Groven, Mom Melissa Terrific Kid Cody Demarais, Mom Kari, Sister Peyton, Grandma & Grandpa Demarais, & Susan




Landlords, farmers, agri-business professionals should make plans to attend one of the informative meetings being held across Minnesota. These free meetings are being provided by the University of Minnesota Extension. Farm land rental rates are the largest input cost the farmer has. Determining a fair farm rent agreement is a challenge in today’s economy with current significantly lower corn and soybeans prices in 2018.
Negotiating a fair rental agreement that satisfies the land owner and the farmer is a challenge. David Bau, and Nathan Hulinsky, Extension Educators in Ag Business Management, will provide several ways: by examples, factsheets and worksheets to determine a fair farm land rental rate for both parties.
Topics covered at the meetings will include local historic and projected farmland rental rate trends, current farm land values and sales, and a worksheet that will help determine a fair rental agreement. Input costs for 2018 will be presented along with current 2018 corn and soybean prices. Worksheets will examine 2019 costs and what is affordable rent that a farmer will be able to pay in 2019, the rate of return to the landlord at current market values and examine flexible rental agreements.
Make plans to attend one of these meetings now. Attendees will receive several informative worksheets and factsheets that will help to determine what is a fair 2019 farm land rental rate is.
Area meetings will be held on the following dates:
· Tuesday, November 27, 2018, 1:00 to 3:00 p.m., Youngquist Auditorium, University of Minnesota Crookston Campus, Crookston.
· Wednesday, November 28, 2018, 9:00 to 11:00 a.m., Red Lake Falls Community Hall basement meeting room, 402 Falls Avenue, SW, Red Lake Falls.
· Wednesday, November 28, 2018, 2:00 to 4:00 p.m., Clearwater County Courthouse, 3rd Floor Meeting Room, 213 Main Avenue, North, Bagley.
· Wednesday, January 23, 2019, 10 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., Youngquist Auditorium, University of Minnesota Crookston Campus, Crookston.





The Crookston Area Chamber & Visitor’s Bureau would like to remind you of the upcoming annual National Small Business Saturday Day on Saturday, November 24. Small businesses do a variety of important things for a community like creating jobs. The money you spend within your community creates employment opportunities. Shopping at one local business helps other local businesses. When stopping at one business in your community, you’ll most likely stop by others as well. By participating in Small Business Saturday, you’re making sure small businesses thrive and continue to add to the uniqueness of your community.
Crookston has many small businesses that offer a wide variety of unique products. We spoke with small business owner, Shawn Rezac, co-owner of Wonderful Life Foods in Crookston to gain insight from a small business owner. Shawn shared with us, “It’s a fun, exciting and a rewarding experience all wrapped into one being a small business owner. Erin and I were inspired to start our business because of the need of a business that caters to many specific dietary requirement needs such as we do. We believe downtown Crookston is the place to be with all the surrounding business, and people on the go can stop by at their own convenience and grab a healthy bite.”
Many of our local businesses will be taking part in Small Business Saturday, so please shop local not only on this day but every day. Your Crookston Area Chamber and Visitor’s Bureau appreciates all our small business owners. For more information on how you can participate in National Small Business Saturday, call your Chamber office at 218-281-4320 or email us at

Terri Heggie
Executive Director
Crookston Area Chamber and Visitor’s Bureau





Crookston Home Delivered Meals is a non-profit agency that has provided meals in Crookston since 1976. Over 10,000 hot nutritionally balanced noon meals were delivered last year. Home Delivered Meals is provided up to five days a week to individuals who would otherwise not have a warm nutritious meal. Crookston residents can remain in their homes through the help of this program.
United Way Executive Director Lori Wagner said, “We love to serve our seniors, we want to keep our seniors in their homes.”
United Way makes it possible to help individuals who are unable to pay the full price of a meal. “United Way funds are used to offset the cost of meals for private pay individuals that do not have other sources of payments,” said Wagner.
Home Delivered Meals continues to strive to be self-sustaining through insurance reimbursements, state funding, donations and United Way funding. Home Delivered Meals are prepared by New Horizon Foods at Riverview Healthcare. Special diets are available as needed under the direction of a registered dietitian.
Home Delivered Meals is able to provide this service with the help of over 50 organizations, businesses, clubs and churches. With the help of over 1000 volunteers a year we can provide delivery of meals.





Senator Mark Johnson (East Grand Forks) has received a perfect 100% ranking from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) for his support of Minnesota’s small business owners and employees. NFIB announced the rankings as part of their 2017-2018 legislative scorecard, which tracks legislators’ votes on a list of bills affecting small businesses, including taxes, health insurance, legal issues, and more. The scorecard is available here.
“I am proud to be recognized by the National Federation of Independent Business for my record of protecting and encouraging small businesses in Minnesota,” said Senator Johnson. “As a small business owner, I know firsthand the struggles that we face and importance that sound economic legislation plays in our survival. Small businesses represent the backbone of our state’s economy and are pillars in our local communities, and I am proud to continue to support them.”
NFIB is the voice of small business, advocating on behalf of America’s small and independent business owners, both in Washington, D.C. and in all 50 state capitals. NFIB is nonprofit, nonpartisan, and member-driven. Since the group’s founding in 1943, NFIB has been exclusively dedicated to small and independent businesses and remains so today.





Sheila Menard and John Barrus presented oncology nurses Janelle Porter and Alana Wager with a pile of checks made out to Altru.  These donations were collected at the “Community Soars to Defeat Cancer” event on October 12.
The donation is timely as Altru Clinic works to expand services in their new Oncology/Infusion Department in Crookston to be better able to support oncology patients and make their appointments more tolerable.





On Thursday, November 15 at 2:50 p.m. Crookston Police responded to a report of a two-vehicle accident on Sahlstrom Drive and North Acres Drive.  The vehicles involved were a 1997 Ford MHV Sand Truck, driven by Phillip Peterson of Crookston and 2005 Chevrolet Suburban, driven by Bruce Wilson of Crookston.
There were no injuries reported.  The Ford received minor damage, damage to the Suburban was moderate.  Offices issued a citation to Peterson for failure to exercise due care.





On Sunday at approximately 11:55 p.m. officers from the Grand Forks Police Department initiated a traffic stop on a motor vehicle that had failed to stop for a red light at the intersection of Campbell Drive and S. Washington Street. The vehicle fled from officers and proceeded to go through multiple stop lights and stop signs.
During the pursuit the suspect vehicle struck the porch of a residence and also struck a stopped patrol vehicle that was in the area of the pursuit. The driver of the vehicle then parked in the alley of 1000 S. 10th Street where he fled on foot. A perimeter was established, and officers were able to track the subject through using shoe prints in the snow. The subject was located by perimeter units and identified as being Cory Hanson.
The subject was transported to the Grand Forks County Correctional Center and was charged with driving under the influence, reckless endangerment, reckless driving, preventing arrest, leaving the scene of an accident on two occasions and fleeing in a motor vehicle.
No one was injured in the incident. The investigation is on-going at this time and anyone with any information is asked to contact the Grand Forks Police Department.
Special thanks given to the personnel of the Grand Forks Public Safety Answering Point for their efforts and assistance.






If you’ve been driving along Fisher Avenue or one of the neighboring streets to the south this past week you’ve noticed bulldozers, back hoes and off-road vehicles working to move dirt.  Bob Herkenhoff is building a second pond to the north of the one he created several years.  The new pond will run 650 feet long (north to south), and 300 feet wide (east to west) totaling four and a half acres.  At its deepest, the pond will be 10 feet deep and will feature two islands measuring roughly 50 by 60 feet each.  Herkenhoff estimated the pond will hold about five million gallons of water.   Herkenhoff hopes to have the pond finished next week.  “Progress is going well, we’re aiming to be done before completion the Wednesday before thanksgiving,” said Herkenhoff. “We'll do some landscaping and replanting next spring.”  Herkenhoff, the owner of the land and the man-made lake nearby, said he enjoys walking around ponds, so he decided to add another one.  He’s also hoping we’ll get lots of snow, so the pond will fill up in the spring as a nice addition to the north side of town as it continues to develop.
The new pond will be close to the new development being proposed behind the houses on the north end of Barrette Street.   On Tuesday, the Crookston Planning Commission looked at plan calls for development of one or two-family residents on each lot.  This is the first step in the development process, “The planning commission will make a recommendation to the council for their review,” explained Johnson.  “After that there would be development of a street plan, surveying I’m assuming over the winter and start of work in the spring.”
Herkenhoff said his desire that the area would one day become a 30-acre natural park area for the City of Crookston. 

The southeast end of the pond is completed showing a 4 to 1 grade

                       For video of the work being done, click on the video above





The RiverView Foundation Board of Directors would like to thank KROX for another great year of broadcasting RiverView’s Philanthropy Day event on Thursday, November 15.  This year marked the fifteenth year KROX has broadcast live, on-site for this meaningful event filled with heartfelt stories from RiverView patients and staff sharing testimonials of the exceptional care they and their loved ones have received at RiverView Health.
RiverView’s first Philanthropy Day event was held Nov. 15th, 2004. Since then more than 290 personal interviews have been shared with KROX listeners detailing how critical local healthcare services are for the people that live and work in our rural community.  “Philanthropy Day is an important day for our organization,’’ said Foundation Director Kent Bruun. “The annual event is important in helping to create an increased awareness of services offered at RiverView Health and to share the important role of donors and their support of RiverView’s mission. The Foundation Board and I want to thank Chris Fee and KROX for the years of support they have given this event. Without them it would not happen.’’
The Foundation Board of Directors would also like to thank those who shared their stories with KROX listeners, as well as everyone who participated in the Community Health Fair and the growing charitable support received from donors. As volunteer board members we are honored and committed to serve our locally governed community hospital so it remains healthy and strong, today and in the future.  
Philanthropy Day is a great way to share all that we are thankful for at the Foundation. It is a great way to highlight the priority programs and medical equipment that provide the greatest benefits to the highest number of patients. We thank you for being a part of this important event, and for your continued support of the RiverView Health Foundation.

The RiverView Foundation Board of Directors
Kurt Heldstab – President
Ingrid Remick
Amy Ellingson
Christian Kiel
Sue Westrom
Jerry Lindsay
Maggie Grove
Marcia Schoenborn
Michelle Snyder
Marilyn Wentzel




The Crookston High School has announced that juniors Katherine Geist and Benjamin Brantner are the Crookston High School School nominees for the Minnesota State High School League's Excel Award.
Katherine Geist: (
Parents: Daniel and Sara Geist) Katherine is active in Cross Country, Track, Orchestra, and Speech. She has been on the A Honor Roll for two years. She is active in Student Council, Knowledge Bowl, and Riverwatch. She has been involved in Leo Club, Envirothon, School Blood Drive and Classic Noel Concert Committee. She volunteers as a Youth Figure Skating Coach, Wild Hog Marathon Volunteer, Holiday Pianist at the Nursing Home, and plays community events for Pop Strings and Valley Fiddlers.
Benjamin Brantner:
(Parents: Jason and Kerri Brantner) Benjamin is active Soccer, Track and Field, Concert Band, Marching Band, Pep Band, Concert Orchestra, Pop Strings, Speech, Knowledge Bowl, and Leo Club. He volunteers with the Crookston Youth Foundation, acting as the Vice Chair and on the design and technology committees, helps with food packing, and wit the Elementary Track Meet.
Excel Award recipients at Crookston High School meet the following criteria:
- The student must be a junior in high school.
- The student must be making satisfactory progress toward his or her graduation requirements.
- He or she must be a participant in League-sponsored fine arts and/or athletic activity.
- The student must hold a leadership position in school.
- He or she must work voluntarily within the community of Crookston.-
- He or she must meet MSHSL General Eligibility Requirements.





The Crookston High School has announced that seniors Thea Oman and Brock Heppner have been named the schools nominees for the Minnesota State High School League Triple A Award.
Brock Heppner:
(Parents: Bradley and Kari Heppner) Brock is active in Soccer, Hockey, Golf, and has been involved in Choir, Visual Arts, and Orchestra. 
Thea Oman: (Parents:  Andrew and Lynnea Oman) Thea is active in Swimming, Track, and Choir. She also participates in Visual Arts. 
The purpose of the Triple A award is to recognize and honor high school seniors who have excelled in the classroom, on the athletic field, and in fine arts.
Triple A Award recipients at Crookston High School meet the following criteria:
- The student must be a senior in high school.
- The student must have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher at the date of the nomination. 
- He or she must be a participant in League-sponsored fine arts and/or athletic activity.
- He or she must comply with the MSHSL’s Student Code of Conduct.





The Tri-Valley Opportunity Council, Inc. Foster Grandparent Program held its annual recognition luncheon at the Crookston Eagles Club on Wednesday, October 10. Jeanette Larson, Senior Programs Manager began the event by welcoming the Foster Grandparents and guests to the banquet. Jason Carlson, Tri-Valley’s CEO thanked all of the volunteers for the difference they are making in the lives of others in our communities.  Carlson introduced the newly hired Director of Senior Programs, Marley Melbye. Marley shared about herself and how excited she is to begin this position and how she is looking forward to working with the Foster Grandparent Program.  Kristal Abrahamson introduced the Advisory Board members.
Sally Erickson was the guest speaker during the luncheon.  Erickson holds degrees in Business and English Writing from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minn. She has spent most of her career as a technical writer in the software industry.  She has also written a book entitled Letters to HEAVEN.  This is Sally’s story about cancer, death, and hope. 
Following Sally’s message, the “World of Difference” awards were given to individuals who were nominated by professional staff at their volunteer site. “With the little things you do every day, your impact spreads far and wide. Your commitment to improving lives inspires and motivates us all... You make a world of difference.” is engraved on the award along with the recipients’ name.
Recipients of the World of Difference Award are Grandma Doris Pontow (Discovery Place Early Learning Center, Thief River Falls, 6 year volunteer), Grandpa Milo Trangsrud(Challenger Elementary School, Thief River Falls, 2 year volunteer), Grandma Kathryn Haider (St, Michaels School, Mahnomen, 6 year volunteer),  Grandma Mary Steinbrenner (Magelssen Elementary, Fosston, 4 year volunteer),  Grandma Linda Stelzer (St. Joseph’s Elementary, Moorhead 2 year volunteer) and Grandpa Art Wood (Dorothy Dodds Elementary School, Moorhead 1 year volunteer) .
For more information on how to become a Foster Grandparent, Caring Companion or how to receive Caring Companion services, please call Marley, Jeanette, Jean, or Kristal at 1-800-584-7020.

Left Picture: Milo Trangsrud and Jean Halvorson (Foster Grandparent Coordinator)
Right Picture: Art Wood, Kathryn Haider, Mary Steinbrenner, Doris Pontow, Linda Stelzer









The Crookston High School Music Department will present the 19th Annual Classic Noel on Sunday, December 2 at the Crookston High School.  The Crookston High School Orchestra and Choir will perform dinner will be catered by Paul Gregg and the Irishman’s Shanty and pie from Kim Samuelson and RBJ’s Restaurant will be served.  The doors will open at 5:30 p.m. and dinner will be served in the Crookston High School commons at 6:00 p.m.  The dinner menu includes ham with baked potato, cooked carrots, tossed salad, bread roll, and choice of pie.  Tickets for the evening are $20 for the dinner and the concert at 7:30 p.m. in the Crookston High School Auditorium.  “The choir and orchestra is working together to put on a beautiful evening,” said Crookston High School Choir Director Belinda Fjeld.
The senior co-chairs for the Classic Noel are Gina Visness and Karly Resendiz. 
Crookston High School Orchestra Director Hailey Ellis said they have a good selection of music for this years performance. “We are doing a selection of three English carols, which include He We Come A Caroling, Coventry Carol, and We Wish You a Merry Christmas, so some very classic pieces,” said Ellis. “We also will be playing a piece from Strauss called Pizzicato Polka and it is a real novelty piece and a lot of fun.  We are bringing back Peace, Peace as our closer between the choir and the orchestra.”
The students put a lot of work to put on the concert and meal. “It is a real enjoyable evening and it is a lot of work for the kids, but it is a lot of fun,” said Fjeld.  “We transform the commons into a beautiful dining hall and the people are seated at the tables and are entertained throughout the evening.”
The silent auction item committee of Katherine Geist, Emily Gillette and Elizabeth Erdman are asking local businesses to put a basket or item up for the silent auction with all the proceeds going to the Crookston High School music department.
Dawn Resendiz of D & D Thomfordes will be selling poinsettias for $15 at the Classic Noel with $5 of each sale going back to the music department.
You can get tickets for $20, which includes the dinner and concert, for the Classic Noel at Montague’s Flower Shop, Crookston Floral, the Crookston High School office and from choir and orchestra students.    For people that want to go to the concert only that is the regular concert admission of $4 for adults and $3 for children.

The Crookston Junior High combined (band, choir and orchestra) will have a concert on Monday, November 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the Crookston High School Auditorium.  Their will be no admission charged.





Prior to the fireworks at the conclusion of Tuesday’s Ways & Means Committee that we reported on yesterday, the committee moved forward with several topics during the meeting.  
The first was the review of the twice-a-month recycling collection, which as previously reported showed a drastic drop-off in utilization (58 percent) between the first and second pickup.  The committee voted in favor of the staff recommendation to return to once a month pickup, but left the door open for future exploration, including a second test run or investing in larger bins.  

The second item on the agenda was a suggestion from MNDDOT that the City of Crookston create a steering committee to research downtown traffic calming.  The plan is to have an open active listening session for the community and then request that community members sign-up to be a part of the steering committee.  All councilman seems to be willing to at least look into the discussion and hear from the community, while both Councilmen Steve Erickson and Jake Fee expressed, they wouldn’t support anything financially that didn’t include improving the downtown sidewalks. 
City Administrator Shannon Stassen described the premise behind the steering committee. “MnDOT has suggested we form a steering committee and do some additional research into downtown calming, safety measures,” explained Stassen.  “It’s kind of a call to anyone that would like to serve to put your name forward and we’ll talk that list to the council for approval.”
A rough date thrown around was having a public meeting led by City staff the Week of November 26 and establishing a steering committee representative of the population from that meeting explained Mayor Wayne Melbye.  “We’re going to invite the whole City to come down and talk or listen, preferably listen, and then weigh in and say I’d be interested in getting on that committee,” said Melbye. “It’s been going on for 10 years already so it’s not going to get done overnight.”
The goal for the steering committee would be to have some preliminary recommendations for council around the end of February.  Melbye also added, “I get that you have to have people from both sides, but if you have an equal number of people are both sides are you going to get anything done.”
Councilman Bobby Baird, Fee and Erickson declined to comment on the steering committee.

Next on the agenda was a couple of minor adjustments to the 2019 revenue budget with adjustments to the fee schedule.  The City would like to set rates for equipment change-outs for HVAC and Water Heater/Fixture change-outs at $60 for the first two units, with an additional $15 for the third unit and beyond.  The committee approved that set rate unanimously.  
The second part of the revenue budget discussed was a fee increase of $5 for rental license fees within the City of Crookston.  The increase was passed unanimously increasing the rate to $25, with a maximum rate per dwelling unit of $500.  This was the first increase in the rate in five years and it was suggested by Erickson that the fire department, who manages the fee, review the fee schedule every two to three years. 

The final two items on the agenda also dealt with the Crookston Fire Department.  The first was a request to allow City staff to work with the City Attorney to develop language allowing the City to recover expenses from individuals for intentional fire calls outside city limits. Examples of how this ordinance would be enacted would be for intentional fire calls, such as someone burning during a red flag who has been told not to and arson.  The City currently has limited legal authority to collect for these expenses and the committee approved City staff to work to develop better language that will establish the language they can use to legally recoup those expenses. 
Staff also resubmitted a request to purchase a reader (message) board for the fire department.  Stassen explained what the board would be used for. “This reader board would be public announcements, safety announcements from the fire department or any other city-related business.” 
The previous submission had been approved for a $6,000 expense to purchase a board, however, The previous submission had been approved for a $6,000 expense to purchase a board, however, due to quality concerns they requested an approval to increase their spending limit to $13,500.
“In looking at the equipment and what [initial specs} showed from an overseas vendor and talked with some other cities that used the vendor,” explained Stassen. “Those cities said if it was up to them, they wouldn’t do it again with that vendor, so we started looking into Daktronics.”
Fee said he was glad to see staff didn’t spend the money on subpar equipment, while Councilman Bob Quanrud questioned the need for the board.  
Due to grants received by the fire department throughout the year staff had determined there are significant funds in the fire department’s 2018 budget to handle the increase in cost up to $13,500.  The committee approved the increase with a split vote as Quanrud and Baird voted against the motion.  





The relationship between City Staff and the Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority (CHEDA) has been a hot button topic as of late in Crookston.  So too has the level of knowledge on the City Council about what CHEDA does for Crookston. 
That continued during Tuesday’s meeting as the council approved a transfer of $350,000 to the CHEDA board with Councilmen Clayton Briggs and Dennis Regan voting against the resolution. 
Briggs opened the discussion noting he had talked with several community members who were apparently displeased with the council for considering transferring money to CHEDA that was not earmarked for a specific project.  He noted that the total 2018 contribution to CHEDA by the city would be $540,000 if this resolution passed and felt this was an open check. 
Councilman Tom Vedbraaten, who voted for the transfer, stated the council should be giving the economic development director, Craig Hoiseth, the tools to be successful. 
Councilman Dale Stainbrook, who voted against the transfer during the Ways & Means Committee Meeting on October 22, but in favor of it Tuesday, reiterated the funds would be spent with a line item budget, the City will know where the money is going.  “Our street improvement fund has been down quite a bit, I don’t care if you’re public, private, non-profit you have to bring a game plan,” said Stainbrook. “Anytime one of our department heads is looking for a nickel we want to know where it’s going.  Don’t get me wrong I’m all for economic development but sometimes I think there are too many secrets sitting as an ex-official on the CHEDA board with not getting the whole story on the projects.”
Councilman Steve Erickson said, it would be nice to see all the council members at the CHEDA Board Meetings and that CHEDA is not trying to hide things by any means.  “If you’re really questioning this, I’d like to see you up there when we start allocating this money.”
Mayor Wayne Melbye said the funds will be used for a couple of projects that have previously been outlined at CHEDA and Council closed sessions, “but if you disclose them you know how the price of things goes up if the City is looking to buy something.” Melbye made a reference to the price of lots that CHEDA has previously should that after being discussed at a Council meeting had their price drop drastically.

The Council also had eight public hearings, seven regarding city projects, and one for unpaid water and sewer charges for current services.  The only hearing any member of the public spoke during was for unpaid water and sewer projects.
Harvey Myerchin owner of 418 Ash, challenged a bill for the property, which he bought at Sheriff’s Auction.  Included in the bill was a $4 a month late fee and $19 per month charge since the property was foreclosed upon.  Because the last tenant didn’t have the meter removed, the charges continued to add up until the time that the purchase was finalized in May.  After hearing from Myerchin, the council voted to amend his bill less $64 in late fees before closing the public hearing.

The Council then approved eight resolutions to adopt the projects and the unpaid water and service charges.

The Council also made a final approval of the downtown master plan after receiving clarification on how the City Charter would treat the document from City Attorney Stephen Larson.  Larson informed council that the plan is viewed as a subset to the Comprehensive Plan and can be amended at any time before the council moved unanimously to adopt the downtown plan. 
The Council also approved a resolution for the tabulation of votes cast in the November 6 election and for the sale of parcel 82.00601.00. 





The Crookston Planning Commission met on Tuesday night to discuss a preliminary plat located behind the Barrette Street Estates.  The plan calls for low-density housing on 12 large lots that would be rezoned for one and two-family housing.  
Bob Herkenhoff, who currently owns the property, would transfer the development to the Northwest Minnesota Housing Co-Operative (NWHC) who would then sell the lots and approve structure plans.  Jeff Hagerstrom, from the NWHC, said they want to see higher-end houses, but that doesn’t mean a prefabricated home or something similar wouldn’t be allowed as long as it meets the criteria for appearance they will establish at a later date.  
Herkenhoff said he’s had a few requests for larger lots and that’s where the idea for low-density cul-de-sacs came from.  As part of the transfer agreement, NWHC would build Herkenhoff a twin home on one of the lots. 
There was a concern from several homeowners about drainage problems along the plat, but the design should ease the current drainage issues explained Matt Johnson, Building Official for the City of Crookston. “With the extension of the storm sewer from Barrette Street the plan is to stub out into the 50-foot lot that the City owns,” said Johnson. “The use of honeycombs [a type of drain system] would be used to collect the water that currently pools back there and take it into the storm sewer system along with the [water] collected in the cul-de-sacs.”
The plat will now go before the City Council on November 26 for approval.
Herkenhoff also spoke with the commission about his current work building a second pond on the adjacent natural area to the east and his desire that the area would one day become a 30-acre natural park area for the City of Crookston.  We will have more on Herkenhoff’s effort to create a second pond and natural area tomorrow. 





At the conclusion of Monday night’s school board meeting, I made a statement that concerned our (ISD 593) size, based on student enrollment.  In effect, I said that we are becoming smaller, and I used our monthly enrollment data to substantiate my point. We have only one grade, (8th) that is over 100 students.  Compare this, if you will, with the fact that in 1973, when I began my teaching career here, we were graduating 200 or more students each year frequently.
Recently, I have blamed open enrollment and post secondary option for this, in fact, I've been strident about it.  However, the fact of the matter is that we have become a smaller school. In addition to the above, this fits the demographic pattern of Greater Minnesota, as our population migrates toward more urban centers. But, as I attempted to state last night, there are huge benefits to this as well.  I guess that in some ways, I've looked at it the wrong way.
I based that revised observation last night on the presentation of our IT people, who took us all on a tour of their facilities.  Travis, Mike and Amy showed us all what they have to offer. I don't understand much of this in detail, (former English teacher,) but I was hugely impressed.
I'm still concerned with our outward migration because I don't understand it, but as I said last night, the end result of all this is that we've become a small school. And, I believe strongly, for these reasons and others, for example orchestra, electives and diversity, that we are the best small school in Minnesota.  Please allow me to shout to you; THE BEST SMALL SCHOOL IN MINNESOTA.

Dave Davidson
Former teacher
Member of the Crookston School Board






At approximately 2:30 a.m. on Wednesday, November 14 the Polk County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched to 29808 270th Ave SW approximately three miles west of Crookston for a house fire. It was reported that smoke was coming from the attic with flames coming from hole around the chimney area. Deputy’s arrived, and the property owner Steven Barlow and his family had safely exited the home without injuries. Crookston Fire later arrived and were able to extinguish the fire. The home sustained moderate damage. The fire was investigated and appeared to have been started by the wood stove chimney in the attic area.
Assisting agencies were Crookston Fire Department and Crookston Area Ambulance.

               Emergency personnel respond to the fire in rural Crookston




During Tuesday night’s Crookston Ways & Means Committee (Crookston City Council, department heads and staff) meeting former councilwoman Dana Johnson accused City Administrator Shannon Stassen of being a liar and he was hired by the City illegally and called his conduct into question regarding emails she has seen.
Johnson said she wasn’t going to bring anything up but felt the need to follow a comment from the council meeting. “When the council passed the resolution to give CHEDA the money, [Stassen] didn’t really state that he knew what the money was for,” said Johnson. “I know that the council as a whole has directed Stassen is supposed to be having weekly meetings with Craig and where is team Crookston when we have a City Administrator that refuses to meet with our CHEDA director [Cr
aig Hoiseth]. It’s been 183 days since he was supposed to have a 90-day review and a month ago he flat out lied to [Councilman] Tom Vedbraaten when he was asked a direct question at the council meeting.”
Both Councilman Dale Stainbrook and Mayor Wayne Melbye interrupted Johnson with Stainbrook stating, “it’s a two-way street” and Melbye asking for clarification on who lied to who.
 “Tom asked about the documents that CHEDA was requesting,” clarified Johnson. “[Stassen] said he just found out about the documents they [Hoiseth/CHEDA] were requesting that day or the day before and it’s been at least six months. I talked to [Vedbraaten] and [Vedbraaten] agreed he knew [Stassen] lied to him.”

Stassen addressed Johnson’s accusations during the meeting, “Dana, I need to address that. Being called a liar in public, I can’t stand for that I’m sorry. There were requests to get everything sent to Hoiseth and I did relay that to staff and to my knowledge it was.” Shannon continued, “Rather than calling me, he had other people call for him and ask are you sure he’s getting everything, and I said yes, to my knowledge. As it turned out there was one document that wasn’t.”
Stassen also stated Hoiseth was receiving 99 percent but there was one thing he wasn’t. “I was standing next to Tina
(Trostad) one time when Councilman Steve Erickson called, and we pulled up the email and Hoiseth's name was in there,” said Stassen. “He was getting 99 percent of it and there was one thing he wasn’t, and we were not aware that he wasn’t. It can’t be spun the other way, there was no lie told, there never has been that. That’s just not accurate and I can’t just sit here and take that.”
Vedbraaten stated he had brought up one time to have it sent out to him and he brought it up again later but never said anyone lied. Vedbraaten said “I didn’t say he lied, I talked to him about getting the packets on there. I didn’t say he lied.”
Johnson, who ran an unsuccessful bid for mayor in the recent election, then said she was appalled by some of the documents she had been provided with during her campaign by multiple people, including, “emails sent from Stassen to certain people that I can’t believe haven’t been addressed, that it’s allowed to have this kind of conduct.”
Melbye said the council has addressed a lot of things, including trying to get a full meeting between council and the CHEDA board that hasn’t worked out yet. He also questioned whether Johnson was asking real questions or just trying to stir the pot before attempting to adjourn the meeting. Before he could, Stainbrook added, “Just a little information, I asked the chair of CHEDA to come down and have a cup of coffee with Stassen. He said the only way I’m coming down to have a cup of coffee with Stassen is if it’s related to city business and I won’t have a cup of coffee with Stassen alone, someone else will have to be there and it won’t be the mayor.” He continued, “if our chair of CHEDA won’t even meet with our City Administrator I think there is something wrong there too.”
“We had issues with Stassen while I was still on the council,” said Johnson after stating she wasn’t trying to stir the pot then added, “Stassen was hired illegally.” It should be noted that Johnson voted no to Stassen being offered the position of City Administrator during a special meeting November 13, 2013, but the motion to enter an employment agreement with Stassen during the November 25, 2013 meeting shows the motion was duly carried with no noted objections.
After the meeting, Melbye commented, “We had some citizens wondering about the relationship between the City Administrator and the Economic Development person. It’s an ongoing battle and there is some conflict we understand we have been dealing with.” He added “They are both A-type characters, but when it comes right down to it we’re all working for the betterment of Crookston. The City Council and CHEDA board are overseeing that and you can see projects are coming through, we’re getting things done.”
Melbye added he would meet individually over concerns and has always been open hearing both sides to get things resolved. Stassen
had no comment after the meeting.





The Crookston School Board met on Monday in the Crookston High School Choir/Orchestra room. The meeting started with comments from Marcia Meine and she said she had two concerns and since she wasn't elected to the school board in the voting on November 6, she wanted to pass them along to the board. Her first concern was a lack of communication with parents. Crookston Superintendent Jeremy Olson said he would like to have a meeting with Meine and discuss her concern and listen to any ideas she has about having better communication. 
The second concern was more of a question and Meine was wondering if families that are leaving the school district were being called or receiving letters in the mail. Superintendent Olson said they have been calling people to talk to them about why they are leaving and Meine seemed to be pleased with both responses.

Career Tech Education class tour-
The next part of the meeting was a tour of the Career Tech Education programs (the shop, metals and graphic design classrooms) with teachers Travis Oliver, Mike Geffre and Amy Boll leading the tour in their respective classrooms and the school board, superintendent and everybody on the tour were pleasantly surprised at the great things that are being done by Crookston High School students in the classes. "It was really impressive, to be honest with you," said Superintendent Olson. "It was a fun tour, showcasing some of the great things our students are doing and the variety that our students get to engage with every day. We are excited about adding Ag classes next year." We have a video of the tours below

Personnel Items-
After the tour, the regularly scheduled meeting resumed and the board approved the bills and year-to-date budget reports. 
In the personnel items, the board approved the resignation of Sarah Pester as a Treasurette Coach, Justin Johnson as Junior Varsity baseball coach and Tyler Brekken as junior high softball coach.
The board approved the employment of Margaret Emanuel as a Title Aide, Marlene Murray as custodian, both at Highland School. They also approved the hiring of Rebekah Olson, Morgan Williams, and Linda Yeager as Instructional Aides at Highland School to help in the three sections of sixth grade. 
The board approved the seniority list with Mike Geffre at the top of the list. Mike was hired by the Crookston School District on August 1, 1985. 
The final item in the personnel items was a leave of absence approval for Megan Hanson, Highland School second grade teacher.

Main Agenda-
The main agenda included the approval to apply for a grant from the Minnesota State High School League. The approval of the school board election results with the three incumbents, Tim Dufault, Adrianne Winger, and Patti Dillabough winning re-election. School Board Chair Frank Fee conducted the oath of office that has to be issued within 30 days of the election. Over 5,000 Crookston School District residents voted.

Frank Fee conducts the Oath of Office to Tim Dufault, Adrianne Winger, and Patti Dillabough

Bus Garage Committee-
Superintendent Olson offered the school board a list of school district residents, business owners, and farmers that have been nominated or expressed interest in serving on a bus garage committee. He said they haven't contacted people on the list yet because he wanted approval from the board before reaching out to the individuals. "Pretty much everyone in the community knows we need it, but they want to know how we go about this," said Olson. "We have several community members tell us they are interested and others that have been nominated. Once we contact all the people, we will have a meeting and look at the process of getting a plan and then see what we want in an architect."

Enrollment Committee-
Olson also said they have an enrollment committee that has met a couple of times and they will look at ways to increase the school district's enrollment. "Currently it is a staff committee and we are looking at telling our story better. We have a CTE program that is absolutely fantastic. There are some awesome things happening and the last thing is to look at our policies and procedures and looking at becoming a better school each and every day."

The board accepted a donation of $300 from Ag Country Farm Credit Services for School Age Care, an $8290 donation from the Pirate Fine Arts Boosters and a $15,423.50 from the Crookston Education Foundation grant.

The next Crookston School Board meeting will be Monday, November 26 at 5:00 p.m. at the Crookston High School Choir/Orchestra room.

To see the tour of the Crookston High School CTE Classrooms, click on the video above





The City of Crookston launched a redesigned website overnight according to IT Phillip Barton.  An intern designed the new look over the course of the summer and the City is looking feedback on what is hard to find.
 “We’ve tried to prioritize gaining access to things people are trying to accomplish,” said Barton. “If they are looking to register for something or obtain a permit for something, we want to make that as easy as possible.”
The web address remains the same






On Monday, November 12 the Polk County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a pole barn on fire in section 32 of Lessor Township.  Deputies responded and investigated the scene and did not see any signs of arson.  It is believed that the fire was started from an old stock tank heater which was accidentally activated when the property owner flipped a breaker to the pole barn unintentionally.  The property owner was identified as Gerald M Shaver, age 65, of rural McIntosh.
McIntosh Fire Department also responded to the fire, but the pole barn was a total loss.  No one was injured as a result of the fire and the fire did not spread.
There were no other responding agencies besides McIntosh Fire Department and the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.







The United Way of Crookston has partnered with local restaurants to raise funds for the United Way and the many local organizations they support.  The 10 participating restaurants are the Crookston Inn, Irishman’s Shanty, I.C. Muggs, RBJ’s, Cofe`, Taco John’s, McDonalds, Daroos, Happy Joes and El Gordito Market.
“Every time you go and eat in one of those places up to 10 percent goes to United Way of Crookston,” said
United Way Executive Director Lori Wagner.  “Get out and eat at one of these great restaurants, live United, give a little, change a lot.”
The United Way funds help organizations serving Crookston and the greater community within 30 miles of Crookston.  Dine-Out Week continues through Saturday, November 17.





California Guitar Trio is celebrating 25 years of making music together. Comprised of Bert Lams, Hideyo Moriya, and Paul Richards, the musicians have established a unique, personal connection with audiences. In addition to dazzling musicianship and interplay, CGT’s shows are full of captivating stories and humor that enable concert goers to feel as if they’re part of the music, not just spectators.
This exciting guitar trio will be coming to Crookston Saturday, November 17 to pay one of their unique concerts at the Crookston High School Auditorium. The concert will begin at 7:30 p.m.  
The California Guitar Trio has made a major global impact in their 25-year history, having served as the soundtrack of Olympics coverage and programs on CNN, CBS, NBC, and ESPN. They have fans in high places, too: NASA used their music to wake the crew aboard the Space Shuttle Endeavor.
The California Guitar Trio’s lineup is truly the sum of its distinct parts: A Utah native now residing in Los Angeles, Paul Richards immersed himself in rock, blues, jazz, and folk during his early days and while attending the University of Utah’s jazz guitar program. Bert Lams, originally from Belgium, graduated from the prestigious Royal Conservatory of Music in Brussels, specializing in classical guitar. Tokyo-born Hideyo Moriya began his guitar journey with surf music and British rock, before relocating to Boston to study at Berklee.
The California Guitar Trio remains intensely committed to explore, evolve, and communicate a wide-ranging musical world view.
This is a concert for everyone--old and young--especially if one plays guitar!
For further information, contact Elaine Metzger at 281-2681 or Alvern Wentzel at 281-7873. Admission is by season ticket only.
Anyone needing a ride to the performance should call THE BUS 281-0700.





International students at the University of Minnesota Crookston from China, India, Japan, Nigeria, Pakistan and Ukraine prepared cuisine from their home countries for the lunch hour at Brown Dining Hall on Monday afternoon. 
Rae French, International Programs Learning Abroad Advisor, thought the Food from the Four Corners of the Globe was one of the best received in several years. “I think the Chinese/Japanese area has been one of the most popular along with India/Pakistan,” said French. “One is kind of sweet, the other is more curry.”
The dishes include Borshch, a beef and vegetable soup and Varenyky (Ukraine) a potato dumpling; Cantonese Steamed Milk Egg Pudding (China), very similar to crème brulee; Oyakodon (Japan), with consists of white rice, chicken and eggs; Chicken Tikka Masala and Chicken Biryani (India/Pakistan); Beef Pepper Soup and Chicken Stew (Nigeria).
International Week continues with events throughout the week at UMC.

LEFT: Bogdan Shkil and Anastasiia Kravchenko serve dishes from Ukraine
RIGHT: Derefaa Henry Ayokunle Cline with Nigerian Beef Soup and Chicken Stew from his homeland

LEFT: Navjot Singh and Salman Hassan Syed serve chicken dishes common to both students countries of Pakistan and India
RIGHT: Rena Saki and JZ Chan served specialties from China and Japan






The Crookston Early Childhood Initiative has designated a need for park benches in our local parks, so mothers are able to sit and feed their infants and grandparents are able relax and enjoy watching their grandchildren play and explore.  We are fortunate to have many wonderful parks in our community where children and families can get outside and play.  The benefits of outdoor play are long lasting, and research shows that brain activity is increased, obesity is decreased, and children are happier. 
The Crookston ECI applied for a Crookston Park and Rec 50/50 grant last spring and are grateful for the partnership with Scott Riopelle and the Park and Rec department.  Last spring, McDonald’s owner, Cindy O’Keefe, contacted the ECI and expressed interest in supporting a current project we are working on and would like to advertise for it during their Grand Re-Opening this past summer.  McDonald’s generosity to our community is greatly appreciated. 
The three new park benches are located at Evergreen Park, Wildwood Park, and Hoven Lane.
The ECI, with funds from our generous donors, (along with other possible financial grants), will continue with this project for the next four years.      
The VISION of the Crookston Early Childhood Initiative is to help young children and their families to have access to supportive opportunities which allow them to love, learn, and thrive. 
Our PRIORITIES we strive to meet include Valuing Diversity.
·  The park benches will provide a place for mothers to feed their infants while watching their older children play, as well as a place for people to rest in a comfortable place.
Promotes developmentally appropriate care and education.
·  The benches will create opportunities for parents to care for the needs of young children and provide education and allow for some great discussions for families.  
Supports the social and emotional needs of young children.
·  Young children will have the opportunity to develop physically, emotionally, socially, intellectually while using are wonderful park structures, while allowing the adult to sit if needed.
Supports coordinated services and resources.
·   The collaboration between the ECI and Crookston Park and Rec Department ensures that the equipment will enhance parks that already exist and being utilized by families.
Encourages active, quality community group and business participation.
·   The Park and Recreation Department will help decide which parks are utilized the most and place benches in these parks first.

Left Picture: Mike and Cindy O’Keefe, McDonalds, and Andrea Prudhomme, Crookston Park and Recreation Department at Hoven Lane 
Right Picture: Frieda Larson with her daughters, June and Pearl, enjoying the new bench at Evergreen Park





The Northwest Regional Transportation Coordination Council (NWRTCC) will host a public meeting at the Roseau County Courthouse on Thursday, November 15 from 4:45 to 6:45 p.m.
The NWRTCC consists of stakeholders from each of the Northwest Regional Development Commission’s seven counties including Kittson, Roseau, Marshall, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake and Norman.  The board is interested in transit mobility to increase service efficiencies and availability throughout the region.  The intent of the NWRTCC will be improving mobility for “transportation disadvantaged” older adults, individuals with disabilities, individuals with low income and/or military veterans.  The NWRTCC wants to improve transit coordination throughout the region using a mobility manager to coordinate rides and act as a travel trainer teaching people how to ride the buses.  The public is asked to come and learn more about the NWRTCC and provide feedback on their transit experiences.





On Saturday at 4:32 p.m. the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Fertile Fire Department and County EMS responded to a structure fire located at Christian Brother Racing,  42738 US Hwy 32 in Fertile. A trailer started on fire in the building. The trailer was removed from the building although was a total loss. The building had some damage. The total property damage is unknown at this time.   One employee went to the hospital in a private vehicle to be checked for smoke inhalation. The MN Fire Marshall’s office was notified.  The cause of the fire is under investigation. No further information at this time as it is an active investigation.






Members of the Moorhead National Guard/Honor Guard raised a new flag over the University of Minnesota Crookston on Monday as part of the university’s Veterans’ Day celebrations.






The Crookston Planning Commission will meet on Tuesday, November 13 at 5:00 p.m. in the conference room at City Hall to consider a preliminary plat for development behind the Barrette Street Estates. 
Building Official Matt Johnson explains the premise of the hearing. “It’s public hearing for the neighboring properties and anyone in the city to give comments or ask any questions about the proposed development or sub-division.”
The plat was submitted for review by Bob Herkenhoff with all properties within 350 feet of the proposed development were sent notices by mail.  The plan calls for development of one or two-family residents on each lot.  This is the first step in the development process, “The planning commission will make a recommendation to the council for their review,” explained Johnson.  “After that there would be development of a street plan, surveying I’m assuming over the winter and start of work in the spring.”




The Crookston City Council will meet at 7:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 13 in the Council Chambers at City Hall.  Tuesday’s meeting consists of 10 items on the consent agenda, eight public hearings and another 11 items on the regular agenda.
The consent agenda consists of approving the October 23 meeting minutes, and the following resolutions: to approve bills and disbursements in the amount of $308,561.26, to approve the transfer of pool ownership from Independent School District 593 to the City of Crookston, authorizing the sale of real property (Lot 1, Block 1) from Barrette Street Estates to Jack and Sandy Pint, setting a public hearing for November 26 on proposed assessment at 117 Washington Avenue regarding a hazardous building, setting a public hearing for November 26 on proposed assessment for sidewalk improvement fee, to approve change order #2 on the Crookston Airport Fuel System Installation Project, approving payment estimate no. 4 – partial payment for the Airport Fuel System Installation Project, to not waive the monetary limits on municipal tort liability, for a public hearing to amend Ordinance 116.01, 116.02 and 116.03 which establish license requirements for plumbers.
The following public hearings will take place for proposed assessments for street reconstruction: Project No. 959, S Ash from Loring Street to Houston Avenue; Project No. 960, McGrew Street from Washington Ave to Lincoln Ave; Project No. 961, Winter Shows Frontage Road.  Public hearings for proposed assessment for bituminous Mill & Overlay: Project No. 962, South Main Street from Euclid Avenue to 9th Avenue South; Project No. 963, 5th Street East from Elm Street to Victoria Street; Project No. 964, Summit Avenue from Alexander Street to Walsh Street. A public hearing for proposed assessment for construction on Project No. 96 5, 5th Avenue South from Guthrie Street to McKinley Blvd and a public hearing for unpaid Water and Sewer charges for current services.
The regular agenda includes resolutions to adopt each of the proposed assessments in the public hearings, a resolution canvassing the tabulation of votes cast for Mayor and four council positions and declaring the results from the November 6 election, a resolution approving and adopting the Downtown Master Plan, and a resolution to approved the transfer of funds to Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority (CHEDA).





The Ways and Means Committee will meet twice Tuesday, November 13.  The first meeting is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. in the City Hall Conference Room.  The meeting will be closed for a potential property sale discussion pursuant to MN Statute 13D.05, Subd. 3 (C).
The second meeting will be the regularly scheduled Ways and Means Committee meeting following the Council meeting in the Chambers at City Hall.  The agenda includes the amendment or approval of the October 8 and October 22 meeting reports, a review of the recycling trial of two pickups a month, direction to establish steering committee to research downtown traffic calming, fire hall reader board, 2019 budget revenues and fee schedule and emergency service charge ordinance.
Results from the twice a month recycling collection showed a significant drop in the number of households who utilized the second recycling pickup.  From June through October, nearly 185 households utilized recycling pickup during the regular pickup on average, while an average of just 77 households utilized the second pickup each month.  City staff is recommends returning recycling collection to the first week of the month only. 





Tori Rhode, RN, is all about teamwork. So when she was recently surprised with the honor of being named RiverView’s Employee of the Month (EOM) for October, it wasn’t surprising to hear her contribute the win to a strong team.
“When I was in nursing school, I did not want to be a med/surg nurse but didn’t know where I would fit best,’’ she shared. “So I met with Annie (Waldal) to talk about what it was like on third floo
r and the only thing I remember from our conversation was how she kept saying the word ‘team’. So I decided to give it a shot and see what this third floor ‘team’ was all about. A year-and-a-half later I am so happy that I took that chance because I’ve been blessed with the best team.”
“Being a new nurse is a scary and intimidating adventure. But I work with a team that has supported me, encouraged me, pushed me, taught me, and has shaped me into the nurse that I have become. Our team on third floor and our team as an organization is one of the reasons I love what I do. And I have worked with so many wonderful people from where I started in Radiology to working in Human Resources to finding my home on the Inpatient Unit. Because of this, I am so humbled and honored to be chosen as Employee of the Month.’’
Rhode, a Crookston native, has Bachelor’s Degrees in both Kinesiology and Nursing. She started her RiverView career four years ago working in patient access in Radiology until she decided to go back to school for nursing and went part-time in the department. She also worked in Human Resources as a temporary fill-in for a maternity leave, which led to a part-time position until she graduated from nursing school and started on the Inpatient Unit.
She and her fiancée, Andy Wagner, recently bought the home of Andy’s grandparents outside of Ada; so Tori and her cat, Emmett, recently made the move from Crookston to Ada. In her free time, Rhode likes to golf and she and Andy spend a lot of their time in the summer at racing events or preparing for events as Andy races an IMCA sportmod. She also likes to work in the garden, go to the lake, spend time with family, watch football and hockey, and often travels on her weekends off to watch her younger sister play club hockey at UMD.





The Sub-District 31 Vocal Solo Contest was held at East Grand Forks Senior High School last Wednesday afternoon. Eight schools attended the event including Climax-Shelly, Crookston, East Grand Forks Senior High, Fisher, Red Lake County Central, Red Lake Falls, Sacred Heart and Warren/Alvarado/Oslo. The adjudicators were Alden Anderson, Shirley Hansen, Renee Jensen and Annella Winger.  
Four Crookston High School students participated in the solo contest with Mrs. Fjeld as their accompanist.

The results are as follows:
Emma Sherman - "Homeward Bound" - Double Star a Superior Rating
Sandee Vasquez - "Farewell, Lad" - Single Star an Excellent Rating
Skylar Weiland - "Ave Maria" by Franz Abt, Double Star a Superior Rating and Perfect Score.
Jessica Willits - "As Long As He Needs Me", Double Star a Superior Rating, Perfect Score, and selected as one of two "Best at Site" "Outstanding" performances in the PAC by Annella Winger.

Emma Sherman, Sandee Vasquez, Skylar Weiland, Jessica Willits





International Education Week is today through Friday, November 16, and several events are planned at the University of Minnesota Crookston. The public is especially invited to attend the following International Week activities:
Today, campus cuisine will feature Food from the Four Corners of the Globe from 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in Brown Dining Room. Cost for the meal is $8. Parking is free and recommended in Lot A.
Tuesday, November 13, will give community members a chance to visit with international students at Coffee with Friends. Everyone is welcome to come and learn about the cultures represented in the UMC student body, as well as learn about their language. Parking is free and recommended in Lot A.
Throughout the week students, faculty, staff, and others can take part in creating the “New Beginnings Mandala” in the International Lounge, Sargeant Student Center. A special mandala ceremony will be held on Friday, November 16, at noon in the International Lounge.
This is a time to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. As mentioned in the International Week Website, this celebration is a joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education. It promotes programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences. Read more in the following website
For more information, contact Rae French at 218-281-8339 or




The Children at Sunrise Center for Children and Families painted rocks to send to the US Military Hospital at Camp Arifjan, Kuwait which collects painted rocks for its rock garden in front of the hospital. Center director, Sue Murphy’s nephew SPC Joshua Gerads is part of the 452nd Combat Support Hospital, Army Reserve, currently stationed at this US Military Hospital. The children are also making cards each month to send to the troops to say “Thank You” for their service and to give them something special to remind them of home.





Elaine Metzger from the American Legion Auxiliary presented the fourth graders at Our Savior’s Lutheran School with rulers portraying the American presidents, flags, and the pledge of allegiance.

Pictured: Elaine Metzger, Sandra Trittin, Madi Abrams, Ethan Lanctot, and Kaitlin DeBoer





On Saturday, November 10 at 4:32 p.m. the Polk County Sheriff’s Office, Fertile Fire Dept and County EMS responded to a structure fire located at Christian Brother Racing,  42738 US Hwy 32 Fertile, MN.
A trailer started on fire in the building. The trailer was removed from the building although was a total loss. The building had some damage. The total property damage is unknown at this time. 
One employee went to the hospital in a private vehicle to be checked for smoke inhalation. The MN Fire Marshall’s office was notified. 
The cause of the fire is under investigation. No further information at this time as it is an active investigation.



LEFT: Bernie Leider shares memories and experiences from World War II during the Veterans' Salute
CENTER: UMC Pop Choir performs during the event
RIGHT: Men's Community Chorus performs during Saturday's Salute to Veterans





Veterans Day, or Armistice Day as it was known prior to 1954, recognizes the end of World War I when the cease fire commenced at 11 a.m., November 11, 1918.  Several local events are planned over the weekend to thank all those who served in the military. 
The Polk County Historical Society will hold a Veterans’ Salute at the Carnegie on Saturday, November 10 from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. featuring a variety of music, presentations and displays explains Phyllis Hagen. “We are honoring the veterans for the 100th anniversary for the end of World War I.  We are very fortunate to have the Men’s Community Chorus and UMC Pop Choir doing military music, Bernie Leider will be with us as our speaker and he has many memories and experiences from World War II in addition to being our past state representative.”
The Carnegie will also have displays of military memorabilia including World War II posters, maps of the battle grounds, military uniforms and other artifacts.
Other Veterans’ Day Events include:
·    Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Program at the Crookston Public Library Friday from 10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. A variety of children’s and adult books on a wide variety of Veterans topics and the Missing Man table will also be displayed.
·   Highland School Veterans Program Friday.  Doors open at 12:30 p.m. and the program begins at 1:00 p.m. The public is welcome to join in honoring Military Veterans.
·  Veterans Appreciation Veterans Day Brunch will be held on Sunday, November 11 from 11:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. for all Crookston Veterans and their spouses at the Crookston VFW Post 1902. 
·  The University of Minnesota Crookston will have a flag changing ceremony at 12:00 p.m. on Monday, November 12 with the Moorhead National Guard/Honor Guard.  They will also have an interactive Veterans’ Day Commitment Wall from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in the Northern Lights Lounge, a Missing Man and a Military Kids display in the student center.  UMC also has an WWI Armistice Centennial Remembrance Display open to the public outside the UMC Bookstore through Thursday, November 15.
·  The Fisher School will host a Veterans Day Program on Monday, November 12 at 10:30 a.m. in the Fisher Gymnasium. Veterans of all backgrounds are invited to share their stories and receive thanks for their service. 





97 year old Clarence Carlson has made The SUMMIT, Senior Housing with Services, located on the Villa St. Vincent campus his home since 2005.  Clarence is a WW II veteran...and since November 11 is Veterans Day, Villa St. Vincent/The SUMMIT is taking the opportunity to honor, not only Clarence, but all of the veterans living and working on the campus, too.  In the fall of 1942, at the age of 22, Clarence was drafted into the Army Air Force.  When Pearl Harbor was bombed in 1941, he knew he would eventually be drafted into the military. His basic training was at McDill Air Base in Tampa, Florida.  From there, he went on to continue training as a medic at hospitals in Florida and Louisiana. 
During the summer of 1943, Clarence was stationed at Camp Kilmore, New Jersey.  It was at that time, he was called to board the Queen Elizabeth, along with 22,000 other military and non-military people.  Carlson says, “I remember one day on the ship, the waters were unsettled and many people were very sick to their stomach.  A buddy of mine was using his helmet as a basin.”  This friend was from the same hometown area as Clarence and they had gone into the military at the same time as well.  Sadly, that was the last day Clarence spent with his friend as that friend was killed on D-Day. 
After six days at sea, the Queen Elizabeth arrived in Scotland.  Clarence, or “Swede,” as his military friend called him, quickly moved to England where he moved from base to base, depending on where he was needed after various bombing missions.  During this time, Clarence was a member of the T86 Bomb Group Ground Crew...better known as “The Crusaders.”   Eventually, his troop went across “The Channel” to France and then on to Belgium.  “I liked Belgium” recalls Carlson.  “There was not much of a language barrier and the food was good, fried eggs and French fries!” 
In 1945, when Germany surrendered, Clarence was granted a 30 day leave.  He returned home and clearly remembers being “out on the town” at a dance when the announcement was made that the Japanese had surrendered, too. After three years of military service, Clarence was then honorably discharged. 
Carlson notes, “I feel very fortunate to have been a part of the ground crew. If I had been on the flying crew, it could have been a different story.  However, I never really worried one way or another. I just did what I had to do.” 

In 1955, Clarence married Velma Herseth.  They had two sons, Clair and Craig.  Clarence spent his working career farming and working at American Crystal Sugar Company here in Crookston.   Although Clarence has many military memories, one of his best is from 2009 when he and most of his family visited the WWII Veteran’s Memorial in Washington D.C.
The Villa St. Vincent is contracted with the Veteran’s Administration (VA) to provide qualifying veterans (as determined by the VA) short term care and rehabilitation, long term skilled nursing care and memory care.  Villa St. Vincent/The SUMMIT, a community of the Benedictine Health Care System, applauds, admires and appreciates the many sacrifices veterans, and their loved ones, have made so that we are all privileged with freedom of choice, liberty and democracy.

 Clarence Carlson now and a picture from his Military days





The 14th Crookston Early Childhood Summit was held Thursday night in Bede Ballroom at the University of Minnesota Crookston.  The summit brought together professionals from Washington School, RiverView, Polk County Public Health among others coordinated by Early Childhood Family Education (ECFE). 
The presenter for the Summit was Mandy Bernardy, a licensed independent clinical social worker, on the Nurtured Heart Approach (NHA).  The NHA is a philosophy for creating healthy relationships and recognizing every child has inherent strengths.  NHA helps children achieve new emotional portfolios of confidence and competency by creating an environment in which children can thrive. 
“At previous Summits, participants have asked for more tools on how to manage challenging behaviors with the children we work with,” explained Denice Oliver, Principal at Washington School.  “The Nurtured Heart Approach is just another tool for everyone to put in their toolbox.”
Two main strategies in the NHA philosophy are: The 3 Stands and Recognition Techniques. 

The 3 Stands are:
Absolutely NO:
I refuse to give my time, energy and relationship to negative behavior.  I will not accidentally foster failure nor will I reward problems by responding to them in animated ways.  I will save my time and energy for searching for success.
Absolutely YES:
I will relentlessly and strategically pull the child into new patterns of success.  I will constantly recognize the success and achievement that children are displaying no matter how small and present them with clear undeniable evidence of their value and how great they are.
Absolutely CLEAR:
I will have clear and consistent consequences for children when a rule has been broken.  “Here are the rules, and here is what happens when you break a rule.”

The Recognition Techniques include:
Active Recognition:
An observation of the facts of what you see before you, providing a verbal snapshot of the moment.  This recognition is given with no interpretation or opinion, just simply the specific facts of the molecules of success.  Sends messages to the recipient of “I’m worth being noticed” and “I can do it because I am doing it.”
Experiential Recognition:
An observation of both the facts that you see and also what that says about the person’s greatness. Building on Active Recognitions, Experiential Recognitions add the value of who the child is proving they are, in that moment. This technique sends messages of worth and re-writes the child’s portfolio of who they are, based on first-hand experiences of character-focused success.
Proactive Recognition:
An honoring and celebration of the rules that have not been broken. Proactive Recognition is a deliberate statement to identify the success in what isn’t happening in a situation but could be.  This type of recognition is filled with empowerment, as the child is fully given credit for the positive choices they made, even if they hadn’t been deliberate in the decision.  Rules are taught in this manner, through a very first-hand experience of success.  Sends the message of power and control, for both the current moment and to be used in the future.
Creative Recognition:
A method of creating success that may not otherwise exist. This technique starts with a clear and doable request or an action in progress and then celebrates movement in the right direction, regardless of intention or quantity of movement. Creative recognitions “hijack” children into success, by lowering the rope and being very clear about where the rope is.  Sends messages of clarity, ability and forward motion into new successes.





November 15 is an important day around the Nation as the annual Philanthropy Day celebration is observed. Philanthropy Day is also an important day for RiverView Health and the RiverView Foundation. It is an opportunity to share the good news of the meaningful services RiverView provides to its community and thank the donors that help make these services available.
Tune in to KROX radio 1260 AM or 105.7 FM from 7:30 am to 12:30 pm that day to listen to heartwarming stories about the difference RiverView Health has made in the lives of so many of its patients and employees. About 20 live radio interviews are done from RiverView’s main lobby each year on Philanthropy Day to share experiences and testimonials regarding the quality healthcare patients receive at RiverView Health.
The annual Philanthropy Day event also includes a free community health fair that morning from 9 am to noon. The public is invited to partake in free wellness information on RiverView services as well as have several screenings done for free.
Refreshments will be available. The health fair will take place in Heritage Hallway on Crookston’s campus at 323 South Minnesota Street. Attendees are asked to enter the building through the main lobby on the south side of the facility.   “Our gratitude is never-ending and we pledge to continue to work hard to make a difference in the lives of our patients and the ones they love,’’ shared RiverView Foundation Director Kent Bruun. “From the provision of basic comfort items to complex technology, donor support continues to make an important difference at RiverView.’’
For more information on Philanthropy Day or the RiverView Foundation, please contact Bruun at 218-281-9249 or by email at





The Prairie Skyline Foundation received notice on Monday they have been awarded the ‘Legacy’ Minnesota Historical and Cultural Heritage Grant in the amount of $206,608 for work on the old Cathedral.  Board Chair Kay Hegge said, “I opened the letter on Monday telling myself to be prepared to be turned down again and found out that our application was approved for funding.”  The grant will go towards replacing the flat roofs of the sacristies and other roof repairs. 
The Prairie Skyline Foundation is grateful to all who helped them get to this point including; the City, for donating sewer, water and building permits as a match, plus the adoption of the Downtown Development Plan that includes the old Cathedral; CHEDA for future assistance with handling the grant funds; and to their prayer warriors who won the award for the foundation.
When completed, the “Community Center with Art and Heart” will be a benefit to the community as an amenity.  The Foundation hopes that the Center will be a great amenity that assists in attracting a workforce to Crookston. 
The Foundation will be actively seeking donations to help with the match in contingency funds for the grant.  They are currently planning to remove the hardwood flor in the nave and some of the subfloor to clean the crawl space, remove the concrete altar, steeple inspection and reinforcement, replacing lost shingles, inspection of the attic for repairs to the main roof decking, and inspection and repair of the flashings.  They also have plans for future work on the steps, windows and masonry.  The Foundation has spent a lot of time, money and labor removing over 72 tons of “foul matter,” so the project can move forward with construction. 
The Foundation is looking for one more volunteer board member, hopefully someone from the construction trades.  They are expecting to let bids for the work by the first week in January and plan for work to begin in March. 
The next board meeting for the Prairie Skyline Foundation will be Saturday, November 10 at 10:15 a.m. at the Library in Crookston.  Information on the ‘Legacy’ Grant and the proposed work will be available.





At 12:20 p.m. today officers from the Grand Forks Regional Narcotics Task Force initiated a search warrant at 321 North 4th Street. As officers entered the dwelling, the lead officer was attacked by a large, vicious dog. This dog bit the officer, and numerous physical attempts to get the dog to release were made. A secondary officer aided in attempting to physically release the attacking dog, and ultimately this secondary officer dispatched the attacking dog with a firearm. This search warrant involved agents from multiple jurisdictions, and the investigation leading to the search warrant is still active, therefore additional details are not being released at this time.




The Crookston Community Theater will present the play "Home For Christmas," adapted from the novel by Lloyd C. Douglas, dramatized by Anne Coulter Martens, on December 13, 14, 15 and 16 at the Crookston Inn ballroom.  The event will include hors d'oeuvres and a cash bar before the show and dessert at intermission. 
Tickets go on sale December 1 at Montague's Flower Shop in Crookston.  The Directors are Joyce Johnson and Lynne Mullins.  Cast members are Sandy Perkins, Anders Berggren, Cindy Fahser, Aryanna Ostgaard, Madison Crane, Wayne Gustafson, Jordan Hasbrouck, Gaye Wick, Deb Myrold, Dani Johannesen, Marvin Magnuson, Lynn Roppeau, Gabi Ostgaard, Kay Miller, Allan Dragseth, Deanna Patenaude and Mark Belanger.





RiverView Health is pleased to welcome Dr. Samy Heshmet and Dr. Eric Schommer to its urology practice as Dr. Steven Schultz prepares for retirement.
Dr. Heshmet received his medical degree from Ain Shams University Hospital in Cairo, Egypt. He completed his residency in urology at the University of Arkansas and has a practice with Sanford Health, Fargo. In addition to general urology, Dr. Heshmat has a special interest and experience in the treatment of cancers of the genital and urinary tract, robotic surgery, stone disease, erectile dysfunction and pediatric urology.
A native of Munich, ND, Dr. Schommer received his medical degree from the University of North Dakota. He completed his residency in urology at Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida. He has a practice with Sanford Health, Fargo. Dr. Schommer specializes in urological surgery. His services include minimally invasive robotic surgery, vasectomy, laser stone removal, incontinence surgery and penile implants. He treats prostate and kidney cancer, erectile dysfunction and urinary incontinence. We are delighted to have collaboration agreements with Sanford Health to ensure continued local access to specialty services close to our patientshomes,said Carrie Michalski, president and CEO at RiverView Health. Not only will Dr. Schultzs patients enjoy continuation of their care here at RiverView, but Drs. Schommer and Heshmet bring additional expertise to Urology services in Crookston, expanding our capabilities to treat a broad range of urological disorders.
Dan Olson, executive director at Sanford Health, agrees with the benefits of staying close to home. We know having convenient access to medical specialists is important for patients, and its a priority for us at Sanford to offer more local services. Were pleased to offer additional outreach services to the Crookston community to help bring specialty care closer to home for those we serve.
After caring for patients in the region for more than 30 years, Dr. Steven Schultz will retire in December. A community open house will be held in his honor on Wednesday, December 12 from 4:30-6:30 pm in Heritage Hallway, RiverView Health, 323 S. Minnesota Street, Crookston.

         Dr. Samy Heshmet                   Dr. Eric Schommer





Even after Allen R. Pederson’s death, he continues to give back. Villa St. Vincent/The SUMMIT has been privileged to be a recipient of Allen Pedersen’s Legacy Gift. For the time that Allen was a tenant in The SUMMIT, not only did he remain active in the Crookston community, but the SUMMIT community as well. He advocated for quality of life improvements for SUMMIT tenants and Villa residents and he was a friend to many of the employees, always seeking to make their work experiences better. Allen was a man who had a great concern for his fellow people. He lived his life to the very fullest and has made lasting impressions on those he impacted with his Legacy Gift. In the photo above, Cindy Hulst, Villa St. Vincent Foundation Development Director along with Jo and Jon Bittner, significant friends and neighbors to Allen and his wife, Freda, are shown holding a plaque. On that plaque is a photo of Allen’s deceased nephew, Lyle Vernon Pedersen, to whom Allen memorialized with his Legacy Gift to the Villa/SUMMIT.





The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council is hosting We Are Water workshops, led by area artist Trey Everett.
RSVP today for a We Are Water workshop held in Crookston on Thursday, November 15 at UMC's Prairie Room at 5:30 p.m.
In a similar spirit to our Equality and Respect for All workshops, participants will be provided a 12×12 canvas, supplies and instruction to create a piece of art around this theme. Water can be a source of recreation; it keeps us alive; it is used for daily life. Participants are encouraged to bring snippets or photographs or anything else they might want to use as material, medium, or inspiration. Completed artwork will be put on display in the NWMAC Gallery in November and will also be included in a catalogue of the exhibit.
This is a fun interactive activity for a group of people who gather monthly for a meeting. Does your group or club have an October meeting that you would like to combine with an outing to explore the topic of We Are Water on canvas? You must RSVP so we have enough art supplies and canvas. 44 canvas pieces will be exhibited at our gallery in November and December and will move to the University of Minnesota Crookston in mid-January. There will be a reception on Friday, January 25 at UMC. There will be a catalog related to pieces in the show.
Contact Mara ( to sign up or schedule additional workshops! RSVP at least 3 business days before the class. If there are less than 5 people registered the class will be cancelled.





Sophie Sanders, daughter of Laurie Clauson and Steve Sanders, shot a nine point buck on Saturday November 3.





On Sunday, November 4 at 4:15 a.m., the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant on the residence of Anthony Mock in Warren, MN.
The Marshall County Deputies had a key to the room, opened the door announced entry.  A chain on the door was removed to gain access to the room.
Upon entering the residence, deputies located Anthony Mock and secured him while other deputies searched the apartment.  Marshall County Deputies located 44 grams of methamphetamine in the bathroom along with scales, pipes, syringes, a small amount of marijuana and a large amount of cash.
Anthony Mock is being held in the Marshall County Jail for 1st degree sales and 2nd degree possession of 25 grams or more of methamphetamine.




The Polk County Sheriff’s Office has received complaints regarding a lottery scam. The caller claims to be from the Florida Lottery and states that you have won 8 million dollars. The caller then asks for a $1400 process fee prior to obtaining the winnings. Please do not give out any personal information or bank information.





Tuesday, November 6 at approximately 8:22 p.m. the Polk County Sheriff’s Office responded to 11524 390th St SE in rural Fertile for a report of a body found in a field.  The deceased male was identified as Timothy Leon Berhow, 66, of Grand Forks, ND.  Timothy Berhow was hunting on the property and was found by a friend who came to check on him.
Deputies responded and investigated the scene.  Timothy’s body was later transported by the Polk County Sheriff’s Office to the UND Forensic Medical Examiner for an autopsy.  At this time no foul play is suspected.
Other responding agencies include the Polk County EMS and Fertile Fire Department.




Guy Martin won the Crookston Mayoral race, Tom Vedbraaten and Steve Erickson will continue on the City Council and Don Cavalier and Cindy Gjerswold will join the Crookston City Council after the election on Tuesday night.  2,498 people  of the 3,491 voters registered voted in the Crookston Mayor race.

Mayor Race -
Guy Martin (pictured right) edged Dean Adams by 11 votes to win the five person Crookston Mayoral race.  Martin had 580 votes and Dean Adams had 569 with Clayton Briggs finishing third with 552.  Martin will replace Wayne Melbye who didn't run for reelection.
Martin has served as a Crookston City Council member for 12 years.  Eight years in the late 80's to early 90's and four years from 2008 to 2012.  He said he is ready to get back into the council chambers and he was grateful for everyone that voted for him. "It feels good.  I would like to thank all the people that voted for me," said Martin. "There will be a relearning curve and learning curve and I am looking toward 2019 as I can start as the new mayor.  It will be some fast learning over the next couple of months and settle in and take it from there.  I would like to thank again all the people that voted for me and I will do my best."

Crookston City Council At-Large-
Current Crookston City Councilman Tom Vedbraaten's term in Ward 6 was up and he elected to run for the City Council at Large spot so he could represent the entire city.  Vedbraaten will replace Bob Quanrud who didn't run for reelection.   With the talk of a dysfunctional council, Vedbraaten said it is nice to know the residents must think he is doing a good job to reelect him. "It feels pretty good and I am pleased that the people feel I have done a good enough job that they put me in there and I want to thank all of those that have voted for me," said Vedbraaten. "I would like to put a lot of attention to bring more jobs to town.  You come to town for a job, you build or move into a house and possibly have a family and the kids go to the schools.  If we can get jobs that people can make a living, that is a number one priority for me."

City Council Ward 4 -
Don Cavalier won the race in Ward 4 by a 215 to 121 vote.  Cavalier will replace Dennis Regan who didn't run for reelection.  Cavalier is currently the chair of the Crookston Park and Recreation committee.

City Council Ward 2-
Steve Erickson will get another term as Crookston City Councilman for Ward 2 after he was unopposed and received 475 votes.  Erickson is the owner (along with his wife Laurie) of Erickson Embroidery and 2nd Street Boutique in downtown Crookston.

City Council Ward 6 -
Cindy Gjerswold ran unopposed for City Council in Ward 6 to replace Tom Vedbraaten (who won the City Council at Large election).  Gjerswold was a long-time business owner and a few years ago she sold Doda's Hardware Hank and is now working at Tri-Valley.  She received 384 votes.

Tom Vedbraaten           Don Cavalier               Steve Erickson              Cindy Gjerswold

Crookston Mayor Final Votes   City Council At Large Final Votes   Ward 4  (Final) Votes   Ward 2  (Final) Votes
Guy Martin 580   Tom Vedbraaten 704   Don Cavalier 215   Steve Erickson 475
Dean Adams 569   Trent Brekken 611   Sharon Lewis 121      
Clayton Briggs 552   Dylane Klatt 511         Ward 6  (Final)  
Dale Stainbrook 437   Joe Kresl 336         Cindy Gjerswold 384
Dana Johnson 353   Kelly Shea 251            



The three Crookston School Board incumbents up for election all finished in the top three spots and won reelection by a sizable margin on Tuesday night.  Tim Dufault, a Crookston area farmer, led the way with 2,038 votes.  Adrianne Winger, a teacher in Climax and Crookston Treasurettes Coach, was second with 1,588 votes.  Patty Dillabough, Golden Link Senior Center Director, was third with 1,570 votes. 
KROX talked with Dufault Tuesday night during the election coverage and he was thankful for all the votes. "The whole school board, all six of us, and the administration have been working really hard and doing a good job, very cohesive group and it is reflective on how the vote went," said Dufualt who added he has two top priorities. "Obviously, the bus garage.  It is over a 100 year old facility and it is outdated, small, unsafe for the workers and we have to spend more money on busses and I would like to see us get back into the vocational agriculture part of the schooling.  We have Travis Oliver working on his Ag ed degree and good things are in store for the school district."

          Tim Dufault                           Adrianne Winger                   Patty Dillabough

Crookston School Board
Final (3 spots open)
Tim Dufault 2038
Adrianne Winger 1588
Patty Dillabough 1570
Katya Zepeda 973
Jim McBride 946
Marcia Meine 791





Jim Tadman won the Polk County Sheriff's election, Representative Deb Kiel easily won her District 1B race and Collin Peterson won his U.S. House District 7 race in a tight contest.

Polk County Sheriff -
Jim Tadman pulled away for a comfortable 1,773 vote victory in the Polk County Sheriff election.  Tadman will replace the retiring Barb Erdman.  Tadman was humbled by the victory when he first found out he was going to win when KROX Called him after 11:00 p.m.  "This is overwhelming, I am honored and thank everyone for their support.  I am very appreciative of the support I received from Polk County residents.  It was very grueling and it turned the family upside down, but it was well worth it and my family was behind me," said Tadman. "I think the biggest thing is since I have been with Sheriff Erdman for the last five years we have been working on projects and working on new ways to do the best for the sheriff's department so I'm not going to turn our office upside down and we will try to do the best for the residents of Polk County and we have a lot of great people in the sheriff's department and we are going to start off strong."

District 1B -
Deb Kiel, a Crookston area farmer, won reelection by almost doubling her opponents total with a whopping 10,028 votes.  Kiel was first elected to represent District 1B when she beat Bernie Lieder.  She will be serving her fifth term and currently she chairs the Subcommittee on Aging and Long-Term Care, Agriculture Finance, Health and Hume Services Reform, Rules and Legislative Administration, Subcommittee on Workplace Safety and Respect and Transportation Finance.

US House District 7-
Incumbent Collin Peterson (DFL) won his closest race in many years by beating Dave Hughes by 4.26 percent (or 11,997 votes) to win.  Peterson was first elected to serve District 7 in 1990 and has been there ever since.  He is the ranking member of the House Committee on Agriculture.

                  Jim Tadman                           Deb Kiel                    Collin Peterson

Polk Co. Sheriff  Final Votes   District 1B  Final     US House  Final Votes
Jim Tadman 6528   Deb Kiel - R 10028   Collin Peterson-D 146652
Randy Sondrol 4755   Brent Lindstrom - D 5173   Dave Hughes-R 134655
Polk County Attorney              
Greg Widseth 9592            
Write-In 156            





Polk County Commissioners met on Tuesday and approved conditional use permits for Randy Bosma of Grand Forks to construct an accessory structure on Union Lake and for Michael Gornowicz of Manvel to construct an accessory structure on Union Lake. Both will be hooked up to a new septic system.

Jeff Evers requested a rezoning for the former Glenmore Recovery Center on Highway 2 East of Crookston from agricultural to commercial which was granted by the commissioners for a possible multi-living facility. This property involves section 23 in Crookston Township and section 4 in Fairfax township.

Jon Steiner, Environmental Services Director had an update on the transfer station project and other work done over the summer. “The transfer station is coming along very slowly and the weather is not cooperating, the sheeting is going up and it is much slower than anticipated but mid-November is the goal," said Steiner. "The cell at the landfill is wrapped up and waste is going in. the compost facility is mostly done but needs to cure and the wet weather doesn’t help, the project in Fosston has equipment going in now and should be ready by November 15.” He also reported on a grant of $296,000 for the organics collection system purchase for six counties.

Susie Novak, executive director of the North Country Food Bank had a request of the commissioners for assistance with their building project, “We are starting the pre-design phase of our $6 million project that required state bonding funding and we have to go look at the options for the building to get state approval so we just completed that and the county signed off for us," said Novak. "We have $3 million in bonding and need to match it dollar for dollar. We have $800,000 now and $1.2 million in grant requests which we are waiting to hear on and we are writing more grant requests now, we have to have the $3 million to get the $3 million, we hope to get the money by the spring of 2019 and get started on the building in the summer."

Higher Ground of East Grand Forks was the low bidder for a structure removal at the Maple Lake Park for $21,600. A public hearing was held on county ditch number 42 to add the property to be assessed in Farley and Brislet Townships. A public hearing was held on the county five-year highway construction plan. Several residents of BRandsvold Township had concerns about 202 and 203 roads which will be reconstructed in 2021 after many years of problems due to heavy rains.






Crookston voters have been turning out at the polls this morning with 1,296 by 3:00 p.m. at the two polling places. There are two polling places this year with the Presbyterian Church hosting Wards 3, 4, and 5 and St. Paul’s Church hosting Wards 1, 2, and 6.  As of 11:50 Tuesday afternoon (3:00 p.m.) there were 1,296 voters at the polls. “It is going very, very well. All three wards (at St. Paul’s Church) have been busy with a steady stream coming through all morning,” said Crookston Election Judge, Ray Dusek. “The new equipment that we have has really been working great, it is quicker and it is better. People are voting and we are glad they are.”

Voters (as of 3:00 p.m.)
Ward 1 – 208
Ward 2 – 275
Ward 3 – 193
Ward 4 – 180
Ward 5 – 236
Ward 6 – 204

We will update the totals later this afternoon. The polls are open until 8:00 p.m.   To see what ward you are in, check out the Crookston Ward map by clicking here.

The flag is flying and the vote here sign in front of the Presbyterian Church in Crookston   A sign posted on the window of the church




During a review of the Crookston School District Audit, they discovered that revenues from the District’s swimming pool referendum will be slightly less than previously thought and shared that information with the City of Crookston Monday afternoon. The adjustment is from the Minnesota State Department of Education in their Levy Limitation Report.
Crookston Schools Superintendent Jeremy Olson explains “the meeting was about the referendum revenue. Because the levy is two years down the road, we are facing some of the enrollment declines we had two years ago in our revenue for the pool, which has dropped a little bit. We wanted to make sure that we notified the city about that so we reached out and told them what was going on. We just wanted to make sure in a public and formal meeting that we told them what the finances were and be transparent with the city.”
It appeared that Crookston City Administrator Shannon Stassen, Mayor Wayne Melbye, Councilmen Steve Erickson and Tom Vedbraaten had some questions but were satisfied with the answers and according to Stassen the news doesn’t affect the tentative agreement that was discussed before by the City’s Ways and Means Committee, “We really appreciate that we had a chance to sit down with the Superintendent and school board members and make sure we are all on the same page. Their enrollment was down a bit a  couple years ago and that makes an impact on the numbers we talked about before about the pool. I think the general feeling right now is everything will still work out just fine as we’ve talked about. We’ll discuss it on Tuesday, the 13th as it will be on the consent agenda and we had a unanimous vote and I don’t expect any big changes.”
The Crookston City Council will have the pool acquisition on their agenda at their next council meeting which is Tuesday, November 13.




Crookston High School graduate, Kenley Wahlin has been named the 2018-19 Ada-Borup School District Teacher of the year.  Kenley was a three-sport standout in high school where he played football, basketball and track.  He is still the Pirate Boys Basketball Points record holder for points in a career. Kenley was also an honor roll student at Crookston High School.  In college he attended the University of North Dakota and earned his teaching degree and played football for a couple of years.  He is a teacher, football and basketball coach in Ada.





American Crystal Sugar Company presented the Care and Share in Crookston with a check for $5,000 on Monday morning. 
Care and Share has around 22 men who share one bathroom with two sinks, two stools, and two showers.  The plan is to reopen another bathroom with two sinks, two urinals, one stool and one shower.  The donation from American Crystal will help make the plan a reality.  "We are so grateful for the money from American Crystal," said Bobbi Flemming, Care and Share Director. "American Crystal's generosity will make a big difference here at the Care and Share."  Last summer, American Crystal donated $1,000 to pay for the labor to sheetrock and tape a large classroom into a new dorm, now housing nine men who are homeless. 

The Care and Share will have their second annual Progressive Dinner fundraiser on Sunday, December 16, starting at 4:00 p.m. at Trinity Lutheran Church.  The dinner will move to Cathedral at 6:00 p.m. and will end at Wesley United Methodist Church at 6:45 p.m.  The benefit will include a silent auction and wine raffle.  To purchase progressive dinner fundraiser tickets, call Bobbi at the Care and Share at 281-2644.

Tammy Moe of American Crystal, Bobbi Flemming and Tom Anderson representing the Care and Share and Ryan Wahl of American Crystal.





Four students from the University of Minnesota Crookston recently made a trip to Dallas, Texas, to compete for the first time at the Sport Marketing Association's annual conference. The team included Greg Johnson, a junior from Lonsdale; Mikayla Jones, a senior from Huxley, Iowa; Kolby Castillo, a senior from Aiea, Hawaii; and Brent Reed, a senior from Arlington, Texas. They were joined by faculty members Eddie Walker and Courtney Bergman who both teach in the Business Department at UMC.
The competition, known as the Aspire Group Case Study Bowl, included 13 teams and involved preparing for and presenting around a real-world client. The team from Crookston also had opportunity to network, hear from some of the leaders in the field, and visit locations around Dallas as part of the conference.
Founded in 2002, the Sport Marketing Association has led the effort in developing and expanding the body of knowledge in sport marketing by providing forums for professional interaction among practitioners, academics, and students dedicated to the sport marketing industry.

The UMC team at the event in Dallas, Texas.




Officers from the Grand Forks Police Department were dispatched to the Columbia Road overpass for a report of a four vehicle accident at approximately 8:10 Tuesday morning.
Vehicle #1 operated by Sandy Mangelsen was Southbound on the overpass when he lost control of his 2001 Chevy pickup and struck vehicle #2 a Honda CRV operated by Roger Hirsch, vehicle #3 a GMC Acadia operated by Susan Hurley, and vehicle #4 a Hyundai  Leah Taylor who were all Northbound on the Columbia Road overpass.    
Mangelson was cited for care required due to the slippery conditions of the roadway.  Occupants of vehicle #4 were transported by Altru ambulance for non- life threatening injuries.  Driver of vehicle #3 was transported to Altru by private vehicle also for non-life threatening conditions. 
The Grand Forks Police Department was assisted by the Grand Forks Fire Department and Altru Ambulance Services.
The Grand Forks Police Department would like to remind everyone to be slow down and be aware of changing road conditions such as slippery roads and overpasses caused by the weather.   
If anyone has any additional information, please call the police department at (701) 787-8000.




Angel Weaser coordinates the polling places for the City of Crookston and would like to remind voters that there are only two polling places in Crookston for tomorrow's voting.   “We actually only have two polling places this year, the third one is no longer available this year,” said Weasner.  “Wards 1, 2 and 6 are at St. Paul’s Church up by Hugo’s and First Presbyterian across the street from the government center with Wards 3, 4 and 5.” 
Polling places are open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, November 6.  The meet the candidate forum will be played back tonight at 5:30 p.m. on KROX.

For the Crookston Ward map, click here.





The annual bingo fundraiser at Highland Elementary with the PTO, is tonight with doors open at 5:30 p.m., begin begins at 6:00 p.m.  The bingo fundraiser helps the school with a variety of costs and is also an opportunity to for staff and families to interact.  “We do an annual fundraiser with our PTO that helps pay for field trip fees, grants for teachers and other miscellaneous things where the PTO supports the teachers and school,” said Highland School Principal Chris Trostad.  “We thank all the businesses for their donations and it’s a great chance to see families other then just for parent-teacher conferences, grades, attendance, discipline and those things.”
The bingo cards will be available for $4 each.  A meal consisting of barbeque, cookie, pop or water will also be sold. 





The Polk County Sheriff’s Office – Emergency Management Division is participating in the state-wide Winter Hazard Awareness Week campaign, which will take place November 5-9. Winter Hazard Awareness Week is promoted by the Minnesota Department of Public Safety’s Division of Homeland Security Emergency Management. This week allows Minnesotan’s an opportunity to familiarize themselves with the hazards we face each winter season. These hazards include dangers from winter weather, dangers from heating sources, and ventilation issues, just to name a few.

Each day of the week has a hazard topic.
Monday is winter weather overview. 
Minnesota experiences a vast variety of inclement weather conditions during the winter months. In Polk County we are especially prone to experiencing brutal cold, heavy snowfall, and extreme winds. A number of different watches, warnings, and advisories are issued during the winter season. Winter Weather Advisories are issued when winter weather will cause travel difficulties. Winter Storm Warnings are issued for heavy snowfall, or the combination of dangerous blowing and drifting snow. A combination of blowing or falling snow, cold temperatures, and windy conditions can prompt a blizzard warning. Polk County is covered by the National Weather Service’s Grand Forks Office. You can get additional weather information by visiting their website at: .
Tuesday’s topic addresses outdoor winter safety.
Whether you are out enjoying the snow, or forced to work in it, it is important to dress adequately. During brutally cold weather exposure to the elements can lead to hypothermia or frostbite. It is also important to consider the dangers of venturing onto thin ice. Remember that there should be at least four inches of fresh, clear ice before attempting to walk onto a frozen body of water.
Wednesday’s topic addresses winter fire safety.
During the winter season there is usually an increase of structure fires. Reasons for the increase in structural fires includes holiday lights, holiday displays, and using alternative heating sources. To help prevent fires, keep decorations at least three feet from heating sources, and remember to check your furnace and chimneys to ensure they are operating properly.
Thursday’s topic addresses indoor winter safety.
Some common indoor safety concerns that occur during the winter are monitoring carbon monoxide levels, managing moisture conditions to prevent mold and mildew growth, and minimizing chemical and environmental exposure.
Friday’s topic covers winter driving.
It is important to ensure that your vehicle has been serviced and is ready to take on the cold weather. A winter survival kit included in your vehicle could be the difference between life and death, in some situations. A winter survival kit should include a bag/container to store food and water, a flashlight, candles, matches, a blanket, and a distress sign to display in the window of your vehicle.

More information on the 2018 Winter Hazard Awareness Week can be found by visiting the Polk County webpage at : or by visiting the Minnesota HSEM website at :





The following is a letter to the editor from Crookston City Councilman Bobby Baird -

In response to the recent letter to the editor in the Crookston Times by Tim Denney, I’d like to address a couple things about the council voting to give CHEDA (Crookston Housing & Economic Development Authority) $350,000 for future economic development and housing initiatives.
First of all, CHEDA was the only recipient of $350,000 at the October 22 meeting of the Ways & Means Committee. There were no other “outside organizations.” CHEDA is funded by the city with an executive director and a board of directors who look at investment opportunities in economic development and housing, and they’re charged with job creation and expanding the tax base within the city. Second, we did not take that money out of the emergency reserves. After the vote passed 6-3 on October 22, it will be taken out of the city’s 2019 budget from the city’s reserves. It will impact the 2019 budget, but will not be a recurring investment.
Speaking of that vote, city councilmen Stainbrook, Regan and Briggs voted against giving CHEDA the one-time funding. Stainbrook is currently the ex-officio for the CHEDA board and should have been aware of the funding’s intentions, and could have better informed the council, and should have thought twice about voting against the money that would go to fund future taxpayer investments.
We have people on the city council who voted against giving CHEDA money and we have councilmen who are running for mayor that voted against funding future economic development. The recent Manufacturer’s Week presented an opportunity to listen to concerns about workforce development from our bigger businesses and we only had one of the mayoral candidates, Dean Adams, attend. Our number one priority is our businesses. If we don’t support them, what is Crookston’s future?
CHEDA’s monthly meeting, which we have never seen you, Tim, attend, discusses some of the potential investment opportunities like growing the housing rehab program, addressing the child care crisis and workforce development. CHEDA’s director, Craig Hoiseth, does have a project wish list and his door is open for anyone to ask about what he’s doing for the city. He also has a smart board of directors that carefully oversees CHEDA’s spending each month and they look at each project and want to see Crookston expand and be successful now and in the future.
Tim: From a business point of view, wouldn’t you want your money spent on anything to help businesses and grow our workforce development? Where should our priorities lie?

Bobby Baird





The Salvation Army uses its partnership with the United Way to provide a variety of services in the community.  The United Way supports the Salvation Army with money to assist in those services says United Way of Crookston Executive Director Lori Wagner.  “We support the Salvation Army with money for Angel Tree at Christmas time and holiday food services at Easter, Thanksgiving and Christmas,” said Wagner.  “Throughout the year they also provide emergency transportation, lodging, meals, gas cards, rent requests, bus tickets and a lot of other different needs.”
The Salvation Army provides for basic necessities in emergencies, assistance with disaster relief, missing person services, sponsor youth and family camps during the summer, and deliver gifts to shut-ins in the nursing homes. 
This past fall the Salvation Army partnered with Crookston Rotary, Catholic Daughters Court Bishop Schenk #2010, Crookston Pirate Girls Soccer, Highland Elementary, Polk County Social Service and Polk County Health to provide school backpacks and supplies to the elementary students.  Of course, the Salvation army is perhaps most recognized during their Christmas Kettle drive to raise funding for the services they provide.





Submitted by Margee Keller

Minnesota Department President Jean Walker, Warren; Department Past President Parley Karen Thygeson, Thief River Falls; Department Chaplain and Memorial Chairman Margee Keller, Crookston along with other District 9 Auxiliary members attended the 86th Annual Fall Conference held October 25-27 in Marshall, MN.  The conference was hosted by the Marshall American Legion Family Post #113. The Auxiliary Conference was held at the Ramada Inn Conference Center in Marshall, Minnesota. 

Minnesota Department President Jean Walker was the presiding officer. Her Department President’s Projects this year is collecting $25,000.00 to create Patriot’s Park at the Minnesota Veteran’s Home in Fergus Falls. It will have benches, bushes, and vines growing over the Pergolas, a dock, a monument with matching granite benches. The monument will have three soldiers and the motto: NO ONE LEFT BEHIND with the emblems of all the branches of service. Any excess funds earned will be shared with the Recreation Funds of all the Minnesota based veteran homes.
A Leadership Conference was held on Thursday evening to start off the conference. Throughout the Conference the Department Chairman presented their programs for this Auxiliary year.  “Just Ask” sessions gave the attendees the opportunity to ask questions on the various programs.
A special program was presented by the Anoka Eagles Healing Nest. They are a non-profit organization committed to meeting the needs of our veterans, service members and their families who suffer from the invisible wounds of war.  
National Convention awards were
 also distributed. Jean Walker received a special honor for the Legislative area, Diane Hayes for the Children and Youth area and Jean Horack for the National Security Area. Warren Unit # 27 was also recognized for the Legislative area as a unit. 





By Bruce and Jodie Storhaug, Volunteer Co-Chairs for “Feed My Starving Children”

Area churches participating in the “Feed My Starving Children” project will have the goal of saving 361 starving children in 2019. To achieve the goal, the project must raise $88,957 to pack 404,352 meals at the Minnkota Power building in Grand Forks April 26-28. It is estimated that a 3-year supply of food (1095) meals is needed to save a starving child.  The cost per child is $241.
A 12-member nondenominational coordinating committee will be work with churches in Polk, Kittson, Roseau, Pennington and Marshall counties in Minnesota, along with churches in Grand Forks, Walsh, Towner, Pembina, Ramsey, Cavalier, Nelson and Trail counties in North Dakota.  Fifty-nine churches participated in the 2018 packing project.  In the eight years “Feed My Starving Children” has been active in the Grand Forks-Northern Valley region $687,815.28 has been raised and 3,183,696 meals have been packed.  
An invitation has been sent to all the Christian churches in the region, soliciting their partnership in this year’s campaign.  Inquiries can be directed to Bruce and Jodie Storhaug at






The Polk County Historical Society celebrated its 85th Anniversary with a dinner and awards presentation on Thursday in Bede Ballroom at the University of Minnesota Crookston.  President Gerald Amiot and board member Jerry Wentzel presented six awards. 
The President’s Certificate of Appreciation was presented to Phyllis Hagen, Francis LaPlante, Janna Dinkel and to Cliff and Elaine Nelson. 
The Lifetime Member Award was presented to Carol Solheim and Arleen Wagner (accepted by her son Robert).

Back Left to Right: Robert Wagner, Elaine Nelson, Cliff Nelson
Front Left to Right: Francis LaPlante, Phyllis Hagen, Carol Solheim, Janna Dinkel




As of Thursday, more than 475,000 absentee ballots had been requested state-wide an increase of 142 percent over the 2014 election. In Polk County, where an estimated one-third of the counties more than 16,000 voters live in mail-in precincts, 3,077 ballots had been received as of the last official count on Tuesday said director of public records Michelle Cote. “I’m estimating we should have somewhere between 4,500 and 5,000 mail-in and absentee ballots returned to us by Tuesday,” said Cote. “People in mail ballot precincts can drop off or come in to vote [at the government center] on election day until 8:00 p.m. as we are their polling place.”
Residents who live in precincts in precincts with polling locations have until Monday at 4:30 p.m. to go to the Government Center to apply for an absentee ballot and vote. On Tuesday, all voters with polling places in their precinct, who haven’t voted absentee, must go to their polling place to vote on Tuesday, November 6. Cote reminds voters of the hours at the taxpayer service center for absentee voting, including being open on Saturday, November 3. “We are open 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Friday and Monday for absentee voting, and we will also be open Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. for absentee voting and mail-in ballot drop-off.”
Polling places will be open on Tuesday, November 6 from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m




In this week’s Focus on Education, we talk with Sara Geist, the Title I Coordinator for the Crookston Schools. Title I is funded through the state and the federal government with a formula based on the number of students who are on free and released lunch.
Title I funds are used to help students reach proficiency in math and reading. Geist explained how Crookston uses Title I funds. “In Crookston, we use Title I funds in kindergarten through sixth grade to provide students we’ve identified with support in math and reading,” said Geist. “They get that support in a variety of ways, a couple of examples include a push-in service where somebody goes right into the classroom to help students, extra reading time by pulling students out to individual or small group time for extra reading to help them reach proficiency.”
Crookston also uses the funds to help reduce class sizes and engage families in school. “We know that when the family is engaged the student is more successful, we have a couple of engagement nights at Washington and Highland that invite parents to come in and be about of that learning process,” said Geist. “We also provide support for our homeless students, we keep track of which students could use extra support including transportation to events like family night or conferences.” A portion is also used for teacher training for professional learning communities, so teachers can continue to look at best practices for teaching in math and reading.
The benefit of Title I services in the Crookston schools can be seen when examining state test scores, as Crookston elementary students some of the highest rates of proficiency in the region, with 60 percent proficient in math, and 63 percent proficient in reading.




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