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FRIDAY - JULY 25,  2014

CROOKSTON INN PATIENTLY AWAITING THE ARRIVAL OF HOTEL IMPOSSIBLE SHOW CREW TO HELP THEM OUT

The Crookston Inn and Convention Center is owned by Todd and Nicole Jacobson and they are waiting patiently for the television show Hotel Impossible to decide when they are coming to Crookston to do a show to be shown next year. “I know I have been working for the past year to get Hotel Impossible to come and tape an episode and they have finally agreed to do an episode for the new season,” said Todd. “They want us to be surprised as to when they come and don’t want us prepared. They want to see what is actually happening and not candy coat anything for them. They want day to day operations, so we all have to be patient and wait for them to show up,”
In the mean time Jacobson and his staff keep busy with the events scheduled daily.

 

 

CROOKSTON VFW LOOKING TO REOPEN ON AUGUST 1, LOOKING FOR HELP CLEANING UP SATURDAY

The Crookston VFW has been working hard to get the club open again after being closed for a short time. Ron Delage is the commander and said volunteers are stepping up to help. “We are trying to reopen on August 1 with volunteers from the post and the auxiliary,” said Delage. “We need a couple more so they only have to work one day a week. This will save a half a payment a month and help pay off the $15,000 owned to creditors and about $30,000 in taxes so with the volunteers we will pick some up.”
Pam Delage, Crookston VFW Auxiliary President said they are planning a clean up for Saturday. “We will start with the clean up on Saturday, get more light fixtures up to make it brighter,” said Delage. “We are going to keep going and plan to have a DJ on August 1 and 2, who has donated his time for the opening so we hope the community will support us.”
Anyone wishing to help should contact the Delage’s or show up on Saturday to help out.

 

 

33 MEMBERS OF BIKE AND BUILD MAKE A STOP IN CROOKSTON

33 young adults with Bike and Build, a national non profit committed to supporting affordable housing are bicycling across the United States and were in Crookston Wednesday and Thursday staying at the Wesley United Methodist Church. The cyclists pedaled from Portsmouth, New Hampshire to Vancouver, British Columbia in order to raise money and awareness for affordable housing causes.

Megan Schmidt is from New Hampshire and said they needed the rest as they head out this morning. “We should be in Vancouver in about a month and have been on the road for more than a month,” said Schmidt. “We will travel 116 miles on Friday which is the longest day so it will be a big test and a proud moment when we finish.”

Hannah Livingston came from Portland, Oregon and was loving her experience. “This is my first time and I absolutely love it, Being able to seeing everything at 15 miles an hour is totally different,” said Livingston. “You are much more a part of the environment and hear and see things you would not normally see and you make a lot of new friends.”

265 riders have been committed to Bike and Build this summer as they travel for 10 weeks and help to build affordable housing in nine locations. Each rider raised $4,500 to help fund the trip and collectively raise over $500,000 for housing organizations.


Bike and Build participants working on their bikes

 

 

IMMUNIZATIONS WILL BE THE TOPIC FOR RIVERVIEW HEALTH'S JULY 31 HEALTH LUNCHEON

Immunizations. Who needs them? Why? Which ones? When? Immunizing your child can be confusing. As a parent, you might have questions and concerns about vaccine safety. With so much incorrect information on the Internet and in the media, it is often hard to find trustworthy, clear, and up-to-date information.
At RiverView’s July 31 Health Luncheon, Meghan Updike, DNP-C, will walk you through the history of immunizations, their mechanism of action, current recommendations and present controversy surrounding their use in children.
Vaccinations have reduced the number of infections from vaccine-preventable diseases by more than 90%, according to the American Academy of Pediatrics. Yet many parents still question their safety because of misinformation they’ve received. That’s why it’s important to turn to a reliable and trusted source, including your child's healthcare provider, for information.
Preventing 14 Childhood Diseases
Over the years some of the most devastating diseases that affect children have been greatly reduced or eradicated completely thanks to vaccination. Today we protect children from 14 dangerous childhood diseases through immunizations, yet some diseases are back in the news.
U.S. measles cases are at a 20-year high this year, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported in June. As of May 30, the agency had received reports of 334 measles cases in 18 states.
Nearly all of the outbreaks involved unvaccinated people who brought measles back after a trip overseas, the CDC said. Those outbreaks could have been prevented.
Attend the July Health Luncheon and let Updike answer your questions and help you make informed decisions with regard to this very important component of pediatric health care.
Health Luncheon Details
The luncheon will be held in Meeting Room # 1 beginning at noon. Meeting Room # 1 is located near the RiverView Clinic entrance on the north side of the hospital and across from the elevators on first floor.
The luncheon series is in its sixteenth year of sponsorship by RiverView Health. All men and women interested in improving their health are invited to attend. Each luncheon starts a few minutes past noon and luncheons are kept under one hour so those needing to return to work can attend. The presentations are free and attendees can bring their own lunches or purchase a bag lunch for $3.00. Pre-registration is required. Call Holly Anderson at 218-281-9745 to reserve a seat.

 

 

POLK COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY TO HOST MINNESOTA ON THE MAP TRAVELING EXHIBIT

The Polk County Historical Society will host Minnesota On the Map, a traveling exhibit. It will be on display at the Carnegie Building on Ash Street in Crookston Mondays and Thursdays from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. (except Labor Day) from August 4 to September 29. Minnesota on the Map features dozens of maps ranging from Louis Hennepin’s 1683 map of the upper Mississippi River Valley to a satellite map of Minnesota produced by NASA.
Minnesota on the Map illustrates how maps have documented and helped influence understanding of the state, from early exploration to the present.
Drawing from the extensive map collection of the Minnesota Historical Society, the exhibit features 23 reproduction maps and atlases, a video station with commentary by local historians and a bin of laminated maps that allows for an up-close look at Minnesota geography and history. 
An oversized jigsaw puzzle map of the state will be available for children. Other children's activities include a Minnesota Icons Postcard activity along with Mythical Maps for children to collage three-dimensional landscapes and create their own maps.
The exhibit is free and everyone is encouraged to get a birds eye view of Minnesota then and now, and is on temporary loan from the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul and will be traveling to venues throughout Minnesota. 
The Polk County Historical Society secured the exhibit through a grant made possible by funds from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund.

 


 

MOTORISTS TRAVELING BY ST. HILAIRE ON COUNTY HIGHWAY 3 WILL EXPERIENCE A DETOUR STARTING MONDAY

Motorists on County Highway 3 adjacent to Highway 32 in northwestern Minnesota will experience a detour of the St. Hilaire railroad crossing when it closes on Monday, July 28. Work is expected to continue through the end of the week. Crews will be replacing the old rubber crossing with a concrete surface for improved safety and ease of maintenance. The detour from west of St. Hilaire on County Highway 3 will direct motorists north on County Highway 12, and then east on County Highway 7. Motorists will then proceed south on Highway 32 to St. Hilaire.
For statewide travel information, visit www.511mn.org.        

 

 

 

THURSDAY - JULY 24,  2014

CITY CREWS CONTINUE TO CLEAN UP AFTER THE STORM, COULD TAKE A MONTH BEFORE EVERYTHING IS CLEANED UP

Pat Kelly, Crookston Public Works director, said clean up by the city crews is moving ahead but it will take a long time. “We have been very busy and the guys are putting in extra time,” said Kelly. “Water, park and street divisions are doing a heck of a job, even if it doesn’t look like it. We will be going back as it could take a couple of rounds. We are trying to get the big stuff now, and we can see the difference in the Woods Addition.”

The crews are cutting up some of the big trees and then use the front end loader and putting them on the trucks to take to the burn site where a worker has another loader to unload. “Many people are bring stuff out to the burn site,” said Kelly. “That helps us out so we really appreciate the whole community helping out.”

Lift stations are now operational. “There is one lift station that had the alarm system struck by lightning but the last two stations got power from Otter Tail Power last Tuesday in the Wood’s Addition,” said Kelly. “There is temporary power from Red Lake Electric for the lift station by the Crookston Sports Center, so everything is running now.”

Clean up could take months to get it fully cleaned up. “We will keep going until mid August and then we have to do some seal coating, but by then we should be in good shape,” added Kelly.

The city burn site, north of American Crystal Sugar, will remain open the rest of the week for anyone wishing to haul their trees and other tornado damaged items themselves.

 

 

OTTERTAIL POWER HAS POWER BACK ON TO ALL AREAS OF CROOKSTON

Leon Kremeier, manager of Otter Tail Power Company in Crookston said the crews are still working, but everyone has power except for those who need an electrician. “We have all the customers back on unless they need an electrician who is needed to get the power back hooked on to the house and when that is done we will get it on quickly,” said Kremeier.  “The extra crews are still working with about 40 people working from all over and they were a good group of guys working,” said Kremeier. “The Crookston Fire Department and city crews who were very helpful.”
Kremeier said Ottertail Power customers can call 1-800-257-4044 or stop at the office with questions or concerns.

 

 

SOME BUSINESSES SEEING MORE TRAFFIC BECAUSE OF THE STORM

Many businesses in Crookston are busy since the storm on Monday evening.   Craig Buckholz at Hardware Hank was busy with customers and remodeling. “Storms always change what the customers want or need,” said Buckholz. “They need chain saws,   things to chop wood and pile, generators to keep the power. Tracy and Bruce have been busy while I’m working on remodeling.”

Wes Cameron at Crookston Building Center had a full parking lot and the phones were ringing when KROX stopped in. “There are a lot of customers coming for shingles, and windows and they keep finding damage as the time goes along and contractors are coming in now,” said Cameron. Contractors are busy trying to fix up homes before the next rain fall.

 

 

CROOKSTON SCHOOL DISTRICT BAND DEPARTMENT TO HOLD A BEGINNING BAND INFORMATIONAL MEETING FOR FIFTH GRADERS

The Crookston Public Schools' Band Department is holding a beginning band informational meeting for families of incoming fifth grade students. All fifth graders interested in playing an instrument are encouraged to attend. Please sign up online at www.crookstonmusic.org and attend the beginning band info night on Tuesday, July 29 at 6:00 p.m. at RBJ's Restaurant. 

 

 

CHEDA DISCUSSES HELPING THE JENNEN'S WITH SOME EXPENSES AFTER RV PARK FELL THROUGH

The Crookston Housing and Economic Development Authority (CHEDA) met this morning and discussed a request from Jeremy and Sarah Jennen who had a bill for the expenses incurred during the work on getting a recreational campground in the city.  “Actually I asked them to clarify their expenses above the normal course of business and we had so many months of discussion and debate,” said Craig Hoiseth, CHEDA Executive Director.  “The expenses were $16,200 and CHEDA discussed the issue and decided not to pay the expenses, but the board split with some wanting to pay half. Jennen’s are still interesting in having a RV park in Crookston and many local people want a park, but now is will just cost us more.” 

Willie Nephew owns a trailer park on the northeast corner of Crookston and has signed a contract with American Crystal Sugar to have the workers who come from out of town and are camping.

The site of the former Professional Building is once again for sale at a set price of $25,000.  Hoiseth said CHEDA is still interesting in purchasing the property.  “Our intention is still purchase at $25,000 unless someone else wants to give them more money good for them to make more money.”

The CHEDA approved a loan request from Dawn Bjorgo for Cofe to expand the business.  The loan is for $40,000 at four percent interest for a five year payback.

 

 

OX CART DAYS TO HOLD A TWO DAY MARKETPLACE, REGISTER NOW

Crookston’s Ox Cart Days Festival, set for August 13 -17, will feature a two-day Marketplace. The Marketplace will be held on Saturday, August 16, starting at 12:00 p.m. - 7:00 p.m. and Sunday, August 17, at 10:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. on the Ox Cart Days Festival Grounds on the Downtown Square. Organizers are seeking a variety of vendors, including arts and crafts, antiques, fresh produce, and/or other unique items attractive to festival visitors.
The Ox Cart Days Marketplace will be held outdoors, rain or shine. Space will be reserved on a first come-first served basis. The registration fee is $25 for a 10 X 10 space. Registration received after July 31 the cost will be $30 per space.
Marketplace information and registration forms are available online at www.visitcrookston.com, by calling the Crookston Area Chamber of Commerce at (218)281-4320, or by email at skegler@visitcrookston.com.
The Ox Cart Days Festival Committee reserves the right to reject any vendor whose products might be deemed inappropriate for the event.

 

 

 

RIVERVIEW HEALTH TO OFFER FREE IMPACT BASELINE CONCUSSION TESTING IN RLF

Chances are you’ve seen the back-to-school advertisements with the latest backpack styles and deals on pencils. Yes, it is time to start thinking about getting your family ready for fall and everything it brings with it. It’s time to get your athletes in for sports physicals. It’s also time for those athletes to get their ImPACT Baseline Concussion Testing done with RiverView Health. RiverView will be offering FREE ImPACT testing in Red Lake Falls on Wednesday, Aug 6th and Wednesday, Aug. 13th. Appointments are being taken for 5, 6, and 7 PM by calling 218-253-4606.

Traumatic Brain Injury
A concussion is a type of traumatic brain injury caused by a bump, blow, or jolt to the head that can change the way your brain normally works. Concussions can also occur from a blow to the body that causes the head to move rapidly back and forth.
Even with today’s advanced safety equipment, preventing a concussion is impossible. Fortunately, there have been advances in diagnosing and treating a concussion. One of the most popular concussion management programs is ImPACT (Immediate Post-Concussion Assessment and Cognitive Testing), used by RiverView Health. ImPACT is also used by many professional and amateur teams, including the National Football League and Major League Baseball.
Gone are the days of a coach holding fingers up in front of a player’s face and asking them how many they see, only to send the player back out into play if he or she guesses correctly. Today ImPACT provides invaluable information that can help take the guesswork out of concussion management and promote safe return-to-play decisions for athletes.
RiverView Health’s, Marie Johnstad, coordinator of the Speech-Language Department, and Physical Therapist Rhonda Salentiny, administer the ImPACT computerized assessment to document an athlete’s neurocognitive functioning before the sports seasons begin. If a possible concussion occurs, after the athlete has seen his or her primary caregiver, another ImPACT test is done to determine any damage since the baseline testing. The computerized program evaluates and documents multiple aspects of neurocognitive functioning, including verbal and visual memory, attention span, brain processing speed, reaction time, and post-concussive symptoms. The user-friendly injury documentation system enables medical providers and therapists to track the injury from the field and through the recovery process. An athlete is usually cleared to go back to play after favorable ImPACT results. ImPACT baseline testing is repeated every two years by all athletes to take into account cognitive development.

Free Baseline Testing
The baseline testing is free for area athletes thanks to funds from the United Way, RiverView Health Auxiliary and RiverView Health.  “Without the United Way and the Auxiliary we wouldn’t be able to offer this very important program,’’ Johnstad shared. “The news is full of stories of athletes suffering concussions. The Centers for Disease Control mandates that states, schools, sports leagues and organizations have policies or action plans on concussions in youth and high school sports. While these policy efforts show some promise, more research is needed to help protect children and teens from concussion and other serious brain injuries.’’
While ImPACT is mostly used in our area for high school athletes, Johnstad said she has also used ImPACT on younger and older patients, including a seven-year-old who hit his head on the ice and a highway employee who needed the testing done to determine when he could go safely back to work.
For more information on RiverView’s ImPACT Concussion Management Program, contact Marie Johnstad at 218-281-9463.

Did you know?
- A
concussion is a brain injury that frequently involves physical as well as cognitive symptoms.
- About 10 percent of all student athletes in contact sports suffer a concussion during their season.
- Recovery may take days or weeks, with individuals often experiencing dizziness, headaches, double vision, memory problems, irritability and depression.
- Premature return to play following a concussion can lead to potentially serious consequences.
- P
roper management of the injury is the first step in avoiding long-term complications.
 

 

 

 

WEDNESDAY - JULY 23, 2014

WOODS ADDITION WITHOUT POWER FOR ONE MORE DAY

Crookston Fire Chief Tim Froeber and Otter Tail Power Company has informed KROX Radio that they will not be able to restore power in the Woods Addition Tuesday. Otter Tail Power plans to start working at 5 a.m. today (Wednesday). They apologize for any inconvenience and hope to have everything up and running today (Wednesday).

 

MORE STORM DAMAGE PICTURES SUBMITTED TO KROX RADIO

KROX Radio has received a lot of storm damage pictures and will be posting the ones we have received the past 24 hours below.  You can click on the link to see more of the latest pictures.


Eight Ottertail Power trucks at the the corner of Holly Ave. and Hurlbut Street in he Woods Addition getting ready to turn the lines back on after approximately 22 hours without power. (Picture by Brandon Boetcher)


Christian Brothers Ford in Crookston had the front of the building and several cars damaged

FOR MORE SUBMITTED STORM PICTURES CLICK HERE

 

 

POLK COUNTY BUILDINGS HIT BY THE STORM MONDAY NIGHT CAUSING SEVERAL PROBLEMS

Polk County Commissioners learned of the damage done to some county facilities during the storm on Monday evening. “The county had some difficulties,” said Whiting. “There was noticeable movement on the roof at the Justice Center, it appears the fabric lifted and went down moving the gravel all around so we need to figure out what it all means so we will contacting the insurance company.” The government center didn’t have power, which knocked out the internet for the code red. “We believe the tower at the Law Enforcement Center was hit by lightning which knocked out radio communication,” added Whiting. The dispatch center had no problems and they handled a large number of calls.

 

 

POLK COUNTY COMMISSIONERS HAVE A BUSY MEETING AND DISCUSS SEVERAL ITEMS

Polk County Commissioners approved a request from the City of Crookston to waive the tipping fees for a demolition project. Commissioner Craig Buness said the county and city will work together. “It is the former Crookston Paint and Glass building on Robert Street, the building could have come back to the county so we elected to waive the tipping fees for the city.” The city purchased the building and will demolish it to make a parking lot which will benefit everyone involved. “It was a project where government can work together,” added Buness.

Myron Jesme, manager of the Red Lake Watershed District and board members Gene Tiedemann, and Albert Mandt came before the commissioners with their annual report and progress on the Grand Marais Creek project. “The commissioners always want to get information on the watershed activities and get answers to our questions,” said Buness. “We had an update on tiling projects by the farmers and their financial status.” The Watershed Grand Marias cut channel stabilization project is being done at a total cost of $1,036,567.04. The watershed contributed $183,418.38 to the project which involves six miles.

The Polk County Sheriff’s Department is replacing their boat after approval from the commissioners. “The old boat needs to be replaced and we got a federal safety grant of $22,000 and the department will put in $5,000 to $6,000 so the board approved the purchase of the boat to be used on the county lakes for safety purposes,” said Buness.

The Justice Center needs to repair the boilers as they have had problems since May, 2014. They called for quotes to be opened on July 14 and only got one quote, from Lunseth Plumbing and Heating, at a cost of $40,602.90 which we accepted as the work needs to be done soon.”

Bacon Dray Lines of Erskine has come current in the solid waste management tax owed to the Minnesota Department of Revenue and they have established a payment plan after which they will be in compliance and their license with Polk County will be determined.

Polk County Commissioners met on Tuesday and approved the purchase of furniture for the law enforcement offices where the Information Service Department computer people are moving after the remodeling is completed. Polk County Administrator Chuck Whiting said they received two bids, with North Country Business Products was the low bidder at $70,927.60. The remodeling and furniture installation should be in place in September.

The commissioners approved two loans for septic systems working with the Planning and Zoning office. Raymond and Eileen Kaster of Fertile were approved for a septic fix up loan of $4,990.00 with the work to be done by Olson and Sons Excavating of Fertile. Terrence Gross of Crookston was approved for a fix up loan of $7,200 with the septic system to be installed by Olson and Sons Excavating of Fertile. The applicant will pay 10 percent down and pay the remaining balance over a ten year term. Funds for the septic system loan program came through the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency from the Clean Water Act.

Tammy Sykes, Director of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program, came before the board with a report and appropriation request for $2,000. Polk County has 321 active volunteers in the RSVP program which spent 23,670 hours volunteering. Each hour is valued at $22.55 therefore the county got $533,759.00 of free work from the volunteers. The county board will take their request as part of their study for the 2015 county budget.

 

 

 


CROOKSTON SCHOOL BOARD APPROVES TWO POLICY CHANGES IN THE TRANSPORTATION

Two changes were approved by the Crookston School Board in the transportation policies. Crookston School District Transportation Supervisor Rick Niemela said the drug and alcohol policy was changed. “We changed the policy to come in line with federal mandates so we needed to list the person they could contact if they had any questions so we put it down as the transportation director,” said Niemela. “Now if personnel changes we don’t have to change the policy.”
The other policy change deals with physicals. “If a medical need arises and causes the district concern we can request a physical of an employee so we know they can medically do their job,” said Niemela.
Niemela said the district can use more school bus drivers for the coming year. Anyone interested may call him at the bus garage at 281-5444.

 

 

 

TUESDAY - JULY 22,  2014

SEVERE STORMS KNOCK POWER OUT OF MOST HOMES IN CROOKSTON, DOWNTOWN WITHOUT POWER ALL NIGHT

Crookston and the area was hit with by a powerful storm Monday evening.  The National Weather Service said a funnel cloud was spotted by Crookston just before 9:00 p.m. and a KROX listener called and said they spotted a funnel cloud about five miles west of Crookston while traveling the KT road.  Winds of over 80 miles per hour were reported by a weather station in Crookston, according to Tom Graffenauer of the National Weather Service in Grand Forks. The storm had some straight line winds that knocked trees down onto power lines causing a power outage for most of Crookston.  Ottertail Power Company crews were working overnight to restore power to the Woods Addition and Downtown Crookston to name a few.  

Storm damage is being assessed throughout Crookston this morning and Proulx Refrigeration, Heating, and Appliance took a direct hit on the southwest corner of their building where the roof was gone. “ Last night when I stopped the shingles and plywood were gone off part of the roof and this morning the sheet rock had fallen on the appliances in the show room,” said Craig Larson. “Insulation is on the trucks and side of the building, so it is a mess."  You can see pictures of the damage below.

With the power outage in Crookston some of the lift stations in the city were without power. “The south end of town got hit pretty good and our lift stations were out of power, some were running on generator, and one was struck by lightning,” said Crookston Public Works Director Pat Kelly. “The crews worked to open the streets, except for two of them which had power lines in the trees and I did not want the crews getting into that.” Crews are busy today getting trees off the boulevards. If you have trees down, try and get them to the boulevard,” said Kelly. “We will try to get all the streets open and get some sense of normalcy.”
Kelly is asking people to be patient and stay away from the power lines. “We have a system set up and won’t be running all over time,” said Kelly. “We have opened up the burn site to the public from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. for the next few days and we will have someone manning the site. If you have a trailer or truck you can haul to the burn site and dispose of it.”
The Crookston burn site is located on the north side of America Crystal Sugar by the city ponds.

The Crookston Fire Department had a busy Monday night and are doing assessments this morning. “After the storm came through we sent the crews out to make assessments on blocked streets, where power lines were down and damage done,” said Crookston Fire Chief Tim Froeber. “We had assistance from the Crookston Police Department, Fireman’s Association, and Department of Natural Resources. We ran the emergency center from the fire department, we mapped the hazards on the street and kept in contact with the public works department. Power lines were down, transformers were on fire so there were a lot of hazards around town that continues so we want people to be careful.”
Fire calls came in after the power went out. “The alarm systems sounded and we checked them out, the main calls were about power lines stuck in trees causing arcing. There were no structure fires, just power issues” said Froeber. “There were no serious injuries that we know of, and we opened the National Guard Armory at midnight and went door to door to those without power to let them know.”
The firemen checked on the trailer parks where there was some damage and Otter Tail Power worked to get many parts of town back on, but they will be working throughout the day.

The Crookston Fire Department is offering some tips to stay safe after the storm.  The tips are listed below-
1. Stay away from downed power lines and treat them as they are live.
2. Watch out for branches still hanging in trees (widow makers)
3. Stay clear of trees that are leaning or on a structure.
4. Stay away from buildings that are heavily damaged
5. Be aware of water on the roadway as areas could be washed out
6. Make sure your neighbors are okay
7. If you smell natural gas, call the gas company at 1-877-267-4764 and the fire department at 281-4584.
8. If you see any suspicious activities call the police department at 281-3111.
9. Limit sightseeing

KROX was out and about Tuesday morning after things calmed down and was taking pictures of some of the damage.  You can see the pictures below and for more pictures click the link.  If you have storm damage pictures you would like to share send them to krox@rrv.net


 An R.V. trailer was picked up and rested against a storage facility!!!! 

 


             Proulx Refrigeration, Heating and Appliance's building was damaged by the storm and a view through the window of the building


17 railcars were blown over by the wind between Mid Valley Grain and American Crystal Land (Submitted picture)


   Ampride Convenience Mart's canopy was hit by the high winds Monday night


A sidewalk is pushed up by roots of a tree that was blown to a slant in the Woods Addition


                                                        A big tree uprooted in the Woods Addition on Monday night

FOR MORE STORM PICTURES CLICK HERE

 

 

OTTERTAIL POWER COMPANY WORKING TO RESTORE POWER TO ALL OF THEIR CUSTOMERS IN CROOKSTON AND THE AREA

Otter Tail Power Company is busy trying to get power to all of their customers in the area. They expect to have 23 more workers helping out today to try to restore power in the Woods Addition and the south end of town by the Irishman‘s Shanty. Leon Kremeier, Otter Tail Power manager in Crookston told KROX Tuesday morning that they are rerouting the lines as transmission lines are done. Kremeier said there are still several individual homes scattered throughout the community with out power and they are doing all they can to restore power to everybody as soon as possible.

 

 

700 TO 800 RED LAKE ELECTRIC COOP POWER CUSTOMERS STILL WITHOUT POWER AS OF TUESDAY MORNING

Roger Johanneck, manager of Red Lake Electric Co-op in Red Lake Falls, called KROX Tuesday morning and said they still have 700 to 800 customers with out power. The crews worked through the night and got several areas back on and it could be a long while before power is back on as there are many problems including downed trees on the power lines.

 

 

CROOKSTON SCHOOL BOARD HOLDS REGULAR MEETING

The Crookston School Board met on Monday and accepted the resignation Betsey McIntyre, third grade teacher at Highland as she took a job in Grand Forks. School Board member Dave Davidson said she was a great member of the faculty.
The board agreed to change the leave of absence from one year to four years for Tom Bakken Dryden who worked at the juvenile center.
Crookston National Bank and Bremer Bank were designated the official financial institutions for the district.
Chris Bates, Laura Lyczewski and Nancy Nottestad were designated the investment authority, Official signatories for the financial operations of the district are Frank Fee, Keith Bakken, Tim Dufault, Chris Bates, Laura Lyczewski and Nancy Nottestad. Signatories approved for the High school activity fund are Eric Bubna, Robin Reitmeier, Laura Lyczewski and Nancy Nottestad.
The Highland School Activity fund signatories are Chris Trostad, Jana Hodgson, Nancy Nottestad and Laura Lyczewski. Chris Bates and Laura Lyczewski were approved to lease, purchase and contract for budgeted goods and services.

The board heard from Rick Niemela reporting on the construction work on each school. “Washington School has the fire alarm completed and it is operational, the new air handler has been installed in the gym,” said Niemela. “Next we will re-roof the building, we are still installing a few windows which should be done this week, we have a chimney removal to be done in the next few weeks.”

“Highland school has 13 rooms that have ceiling tile, lights and sprinkler heads and six of those rooms are basically done with construction and the crew can come in and clean it up and start putting in furniture if they can find it in the 15 trailers,” said Niemela. “New electrical service is back on after four shut down days. All the boilers and chillers are in place and being hooked up as time goes on, the sprinkler system is in place.”
The High school is having heat pumps hooked up and windows are being installed in the upper story in the library area.
The swimming pool hasn’t had much done in the last few weeks and it could be the end of September before it can be used.
The board approved a five year tax abatement for Danks and Lund, LLC, owners of a strip mall on North Acres in Crookston.
School Board member Dave Davidson agreed to work with the principals on a survey to be used on registration day which is set for August 21.

 

 


 

OWNER OF THE OLD CROOKSTON CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL BUILDING LOOKING TO SELL

The owner of the former Crookston Central High school building and the green space where the city owned downtown pavilion is located, has the property for sale. Crookston City Administrator Shannon Stassen said the city has a long term lease on the pavilion property. “The city has a 10 year lease with a 10 year renewal, which we can execute as long as we do it 180 days before the 10 year time is up,” said Stassen. “We have about 18 and a half years left on the lease so we are trying to do out best and make improvements that can be moved. We reviewed the contract today and the lease carries over to a new owner.”
There is a possibility that the city would be interested in purchasing the green space. “There has been some discussions in the past with the city for the green space,” said Stassen. “We have some time so there is no rush.”


 

 

CROOKSTON PARK BOARD DISCUSSES RE-SODDING JIM KARN INFIELD AND SPLASH PARK LOCATION

The Crookston Park Board met on Monday and heard about a project that the Crookston Baseball Association and Park and Rec will fund at Jim Karn Baseball Field. In early August they are going to re-sod the infield with the baseball association helping along with any personnel helping to lay the sod.

Take a Kid Fishing is scheduled for August 1, children can sign up at city hall. Shirley Iverson and Ann Longtin came with information on the splash park which is scheduled to be 500 square feet slab with a location to be decided between Castle Park, Highland Complex, swimming pool area and the downtown square.

 

 

 

CENTER FOR RURAL ENTREPRENEURIAL STUDIES AT UMC LOOKING TO HELP AREA SMALL BUSINESSES

Entrepreneurs and small business owners can receive valuable assistance through an opportunity offered by the Center for Rural Entrepreneurial Studies (CRES) at the University of Minnesota Crookston. CRES is seeking regional entrepreneurs and small business owners interested in forming a unique partnership that would include valuable consulting services by U of M Crookston students under the guidance of qualified faculty at no cost.
Each semester, both spring and fall, CRES integrates projects into courses offered on campus. These projects become an integral part of the course curriculum and are designed to benefit small business owners and entrepreneurs while providing students with real-world business experiences. 
Applications for the program are accepted anytime; however, priority is given to applications received prior to the due dates. The 2014 fall semester application deadline is Friday, August 18 and the spring semester application deadline is Friday, December 5, 2014.  Interested entrepreneurs can apply for this program at www.umccres.org/apply.
All applications are screened by CRES and the projects that best fit the mission of CRES and enhance the learner outcomes for the course will be contacted for a follow-up meeting to determine guidelines, client expectations, and to review other relevant information regarding participation. 
For more information about the opportunity, contact Rachel Lundbohm, director of CRES at 218-281-8190 (rlundboh@umn.edu) or visit the CRES Web site atwww.umccres.org

Background
The Center for Rural Entrepreneurial Studies assists entrepreneurs in Northwestern Minnesota with the development and creation of their entrepreneurial enterprise. The services offered are based on the client's needs.
The mission of CRES is to encourage entrepreneurship through educational leadership, applied research, and insightful consulting. It engages the students, faculty, and research facilities of the University of Minnesota Crookston in order to stimulate the entrepreneurial culture and strengthen the economic vitality of northwest Minnesota.

 

 

LETTER TO THE EDITOR FROM KARL AND ELLEN LOKKEN

A thank you to the Crookston community, who helped us when our house burned down:

We would like to thank the community.  This is easily the worst thing that has ever happened to us.  We lost our beloved pets, including cats, a rabbit, and two salt-water aquariums full of life.  We lost some original oil-paintings.  We lost quilts and other keepsakes handed through generations, which simply can’t be replaced.  Through it all, we witnessed generosity, kindness and compassion from many members of the community.  We received clothing, donations, cash, gift cards, help, thoughts and prayers from over a hundred members of our family, friends and community. This generosity has made this whole experience feel a lot more hopeful.  We are starting over, and this help has made things a lot easier for us than it could have been.
We extend our sincerest gratitude to all who helped us, in any way they helped us.  To anyone who donated clothes, money, material goods, thoughts or prayers, or anyone who offered us any of their time: from the bottom of our hearts, thank you.

Karl and Ellen Lokken

 

 

MONDAY - JULY 21,  2014

CROOKSTON SCHOOL BOARD TO MEET TONIGHT

The Crookston School Board meets in regular session at 5:00 p.m. today (Monday) in the New Paths Area Learning Center near the former high school in downtown Crookston.  Personnel items on the agenda include the resignation of Betsey McIntyre, third grade teacher at Highland, who has taken a job in Grand Forks.  Tom Bakken Dryden asked to have a leave of absence to be changed from a one year to a four year leave.      
The main agenda has the designation of official financial institutions, designate the investment authority, designate the official signatories, staff for the Crookston High School Activity Fund, and the Highland School student activity fund. 
Personnel were designated to lease, purchase and contract budgeted goods and services, and they are Superintendent Chris Bates and Business manager Laura Lyczewski.  Membership in the Minnesota School Boards Association will be considered. 
The board will consider a request for a five year tax abatement for Danks and Lund, LLC, as they are planning on building a new strip mall next to their current strip mall in Crookston.
Changes in the transportation policies for the school district will be considered.  The school district health and safety policy will be approved with no changes from last year.  Superintendent Chris Bates will report on activities to the board.  The meeting is open to the public and they can speak at the beginning of the meeting or at the end of the meeting.

 

 

YOUNG CYCLISTS ROLL THROUGH CROOKSTON TO ASSIST WITH AFFORDABLE HOUSING EFFORTS

On Wednesday, July 23, thirty-three young adults with Bike & Build, a national non-profit committed to supporting affordable housing, are bicycling into Crookston on their journey across the United States. The rider will be staying at Wesley United Methodist Church, who will provide meals and shelter. The riders will be working on Thursday, July 24, to help side a habitat home on Wilson Avenue with Crookston Habitat for Humanity volunteers. The cyclists are pedaling from Portsmouth, New Hampshire to Vancouver, British Columbia in order to raise money and awareness for affordable housing causes. The public is invited to a short program presented by the Bike & Build participants at 7:00 p.m. Thursday, July 24, at Wesley United Methodist Church, 701 Eickhof Blvd in Crookston. “We are deeply proud that Bike and Build has 265 riders this year who are so committed to the affordable housing cause that they are willing to raise much-needed funds and spend two months of their summer biking across this amazing country,” said Bike & Build’s Director of Operations and Outreach, Justin Villere. “Bike & Build provides the opportunity; it is the riders who make the impact on housing issues through our cycling trips. And we couldn’t do it without the generosity of hosts like Wesley United Methodist Church in Crookston.” The group will be traveling for more than 10 weeks and will help to build affordable housing in nine locations, including Portsmouth, New Hampshire, South Bend, Indiana, Madison Wisconsin and Crookston, Minnesota. In order to participate in the trip, each rider raised at least $4,500 to help fund the trip costs and affordable housing efforts nationwide. At the end of the trip, the riders will collectively grant over $500,000 to affordable housing organizations around the United States. Bike & Build offers eight cross-country biking trips each summer. The 18 to 25 year old riders see and experience first-hand the affordable housing need in this country. They stop in towns along their route and participate in construction efforts at affordable housing sites that are in progress. The riders also meet with local officials and community members to discuss affordable housing issues.

 

 

 

NORTHWESTERN MENTAL HEALTH GETS NEARLY $750,000 GRANT TO WORK WITH AREA HEALTH PROVIDERS

Minnesota’s State Innovation Model initiative awarded $3.8 million in grants to help 12 community collaborative use e-health to promote health and improve care coordination.  These awards were made possible through Minnesota’s $45 million State Innovation Model testing grant.   Of the $3.8 million, the Northwestern Mental Health Center received almost $750,000. “Several months, ago with several entities in the area, we submitted a grant for an innovation model,” said Northwestern Mental Health Center Executive Director Shana Reitmeier.  “This will integrate our electronic health records between public health, social service and the Mental Health Center and partner with Essentia Health in Ada, Mahnomen and Fosston and Altru in Crookston along with three of our health plans have all come together and we received notice last week that we were awarded $749,323.00.”  The grant is for 18 months and they will not hire extra staff, but will contract with professionals since the grant is for a short time.
The collaborative will primarily use the funds to incorporate heath information exchange into their communities, establish a connection with one of Minnesota’s six state certified HEI service providers and hire staff dedicated to figuring out how partners can exchange medical and health information.
The Northwestern Mental Health Center also received a grant for transition youth.  “We received funding for transition youth in foster care so kids that are aging out of foster care will get support and helping them get connected with life coaches,” said Reitmeier.

 

 

POLK COUNTY INCINERATOR EXPANSION PROJECT WILL STILL HAPPEN, JUST ON A SMALLER SCALE FOR NOW

The resource recovery facility expansion project at the Polk County Incinerator in Fosston is still on the docket only on a smaller scale. “We were unsuccessful in getting funds at the 2014 legislative session for the big project, so we are still proceeding with the contracts with the five counties and the sixth county coming in later,” said Jon Steiner, Polk County Environmental Services Administrator. “We are making some changes to the project, revising the proposal and numbers so we can put in what we need to get by for a couple of years until we can get state funding at another time for the larger project.”
The advisory board for the incinerator recommends moving forward and the Polk County Commissioners consented to identifying the scope of a limited expansion project in the immediate future.

 

 

RIVERVIEW HEALTH TO OFFER SPORTS PHYSICALS

As July quickly moves on, it’s time to prepare for back-to-school needs. An important need for any athlete is a sports physical. RiverView Health is here to make sure your athlete is in tip top shape for the upcoming sports seasons. Sports physicals will be offered at RiverView’s North Clinic in Crookston on July 22, 29 and August 5 from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. To make an appointment, please call 218-281-9595.

 

 

CROOKSTON AREA CHAMBER OF COMMERCE HOLDS ANNUAL SUGAR BEET SCRAMBLE

The Crookston Area Chamber of Commerce held the annual SugarBeet Scramble on Monday, July 14.  The scramble is a way to show appreciation to our local growers and the ag industry that surrounds the Red River Valley.  
The Chamber AgBusiness committee also is able to make the Chamber Agassiz Bowl Scholarship possible through the golf scramble.  The scholarship is given annually to a UMC Student-Athlete majoring in agriculture.  The scholarship is sponsored by the Chamber to help strengthen the important relationship between the University of Minnesota, Crookston and the Crookston ag community. 


First place:  Valley Plains Equipment – Josh Bruley, Wes Hanson, Luke Forness, Wade Hanson, and Andrew Johnstad


Second place: AgCountry – Scott McDonald, Ryan Palm, Chris Beiswenger, Ross Korynta, and Aaron Rogenes


Third place:   Titan Machinery  - Mike Andringa, Dusty Uttermark, Jake Abrams, Gary Abrams, and Kolton Walker

 

 

 

UNIVERSITY OF MINNESOTA EXTENSION OFFERS TIPS AND IDEAS ON WHY YOUR FRUIT TREES ARE NOT PRODUCING FRUIT

One of the most frustrating aspects of tree fruit production is when a newly planted tree fails to produce fruit. There are several reasons why your tree may not have fruit this year. One common reason is a lack of vigor due to competition, or other environmental issues, that can reduce tree vigor. The opposite can happen as well when the tree is overly vigorous and uses all their energy in making bark or growing larger, therefore not producing flower buds. Over fertilization and over pruning are common reasons why your tree is being over vigorous. Frost damage, pollination, tree age, and use of insecticides during bloom are other explanations for not bearing fruit.
If you use too much fertilizer you will lose bud formation and flower production because the nitrogen will stimulate excessive growth. Also, fertilizing the lawn even if you did not directly fertilize the tree may be a cause. Rain will move nitrogen down past the grass roots and then the tree roots are able to absorb it. So, it is important not to apply fertilizer too close to the tree. Five feet distance from the drip line of the branches is the recommended distance from the tree where spreading fertilizer is alright.

Fruit trees should be pruned during the winter, but over pruning will stimulate excessive growth too. Heading cuts (cutting top of tree off) however, will delay flowering and fruiting and are the main culprit in excess growth. Pruning an apple tree and pear tree is different than pruning stone fruit trees. You must know where your tree produces flowers and how to prune in order to promote flowering. Thinning of the tree is less stimulating and will promote more flowering. An example of thinning is cutting a branch back to the place of origin. Heading or the removal of part of a branch will stimulate growth of the vegetation and delay flower production.

Frost damage is another factor for loss of fruit production. Fruit trees are very sensitive to late spring frost and temperatures of 29 degrees or below will stop fruit production. Avoid planting fruit trees in low areas where cool areas pool. Once a flower bud begins to develop there is a risk of damage from frost because frost does not have to happen after full bloom. The flower may blossom and look as if there is nothing wrong with it but it will never produce a fruit. If you see flowers that have a dark brown or black center they will not produce fruit that year.
Most apples trees today consist of a scion and the rootstock, to which the scion has been grafted. The scion produces the apples with which you are familiar, such as Honeycrisp or Haralson. The rootstock, however, confers a number of important traits on this 'compound' plant such as precocious flowering and size reduction. A tree on its own rootstock would produce a full sized 25' high tree and could take 6 to 7 years to flower. A dwarfing rootstock can reduce the size by half or more and reduce the time to flowering to 3 or 5 years.
Rootstocks confer other traits on the plant such as disease resistance, stress tolerance, and ability to tolerate low
temperatures. The rootstock is as important, if not more important, than the variety. That issue alone is a compelling reason to purchase your fruit trees from a local nursery to will use rootstocks adapted to our area. Trees purchased at big box stores may appear to be a bargain, but may not have a rootstock appropriate for our environment. A potential price difference will be of little consequence if it fails.

Pollination management is a cause for poor production of fruit. Every flower must be pollinated in order to produce a fruit and the better the pollination the bigger the fruit, especially in apples and pears.  Pollination is successful when the pollination happens at the right time and with healthy pollen. Bees are the best pollinators so take care that nothing interfers with bee activity. Some of these activities are insecticides, cold weather, rain, and wind. Also, apples and pears must be cross pollinated, meaning that two trees are needed for reproduction.
Lastly, the crop from last year is another reason fruit trees do not bear fruit this year. If you had a heavy crop last year then, most likely this year’s crop will not be as large.
 
Management:
Plant your fruit trees in elevated areas or close to a building for protection. Avoid low areas where cool air may pool during pollination. Make sure to plant fruit trees that are acclimated to your area. An example of a fruit that does not do well in Minnesota is apricots because they blossom early and may be damaged by frost. The order of blossoming trees is cherries, plums, pears and lastly – apples.
A solution for different crop production one year versus the next is picking the fruit within two to four weeks after blooming. This will thin out the tree so the following year you will have about the same level of crop production. If you have too much fruit growing it will be too heavy for the tree causing stress. Stress will reduce shoot growth meaning less growth for the following year’s flowers.
If you can control and manage as many of these reasons as possible you will have healthy trees and healthy fruit. 
This information was written by Katie Klar, UM Extension Summer Intern. Source: University of Minnesota Extension. For more information, contact us at 800-450-2465, stordahl@umn.edu or klarx011@crk.umn.edu Source: Penn State Extension

 

 

 

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