Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.
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When Renee Bondi says it was a freak accident that left her as a quadriplegic 20 years ago, she means just that. The California native was just 29 years old, just weeks away from her wedding and at the beginning of a promising career as a music teacher. Then one night, Bondi awoke from a deep sleep to find herself inexplicably taking a swan dive off her bed -- onto her head. "I went to bed really excited," she told a noon luncheon audience at Holy Rosary Church in Detroit Lakes on Monday.
The new house being built for Detroit Lakes' Baumgartner family by Habitat for Humanity is about halfway to completion, according to local Habitat president Steve Hanson. "It's about 50 percent completed," Hanson said. "We're about 99 percent done with the exterior, and we'll be starting to insulate it this weekend." Completion is expected by late November or early December, Hanson said.
The stage is almost set for one of the most unique events to ever take place at Washington Square Mall. "Rescues & Runways," a fashion show sponsored by Maurices to benefit the Humane Society of the Lakes, will take place this Thursday, Sept.
For the first time, the Detroit Lakes campus of Minnesota State Community & Technical College is offering a two-year associate of science degree in early childhood and paraprofessional education this fall. Though it was offered for many years at the M-State campus in Wadena, the program was transferred to Detroit Lakes this year because, as instructor Leann Scalia put it, "the demand seemed to be here." And judging by early attendance this fall, that assessment appears to be justified. "The week before school started, there were 18 enrolled," Scalia said.
Fargo businessman Mike Marcil is currently the CEO of an investment company that has expanded its assets from $2 million to $100 million in the past three years. By any standard, that would be a success -- but as Marcil told a room full of students, business people and other interested listeners Friday at Minnesota State Community & Technical College in Detroit Lakes, "I really don't get up in the morning feeling like I'm very successful." Instead, he often feels sick, anxious, and worried about the future.
Wisconsin native Joel Arndt is settling in very nicely as the new pastor at Community Alliance Church in Detroit Lakes. "For me, it's like coming home," he says, explaining that the environment in the lakes area is very similar to that of Watertown, Wis., where he grew up. "I've really enjoyed seeing the colors of the trees again," he adds.
With three possible options currently under consideration, the Lake Melissa/Sallie Lake Association has been given an extension by the county on a 2009 deadline to approve a new septic system plan for lakeshore residents. Lake association representatives John Okeson and Clayton Jensen presented the deadline extension request at Tuesday's Becker County Board meeting. According to Okeson, the association is still waiting for a $40,000 state grant to come in that will greatly aid in the planning process. In addition, Jensen said, a technical steering committee that was formed earlier this s
Though the 2010 Becker County budget won't be finalized until the end of the year, county commissioners took a step forward in that process Tuesday, certifying a preliminary 2009, payable 2010 property tax levy of $17,501,553. This total represents an increase of $238,549, or 1.38 percent, over the previous year's levy. As had been discussed at previous meetings, the commissioners have opted not to levy another $301,000 that was "unalloted" from the total County Programming Aid it received from the state at the end of last year. Under state statute, this "unalloted" amount could be added
Twenty years ago, when Renee Bondi was 29 years old, a bizarre accident just two months before her wedding day left her without the use of her arms and legs -- a quadriplegic. Most devastating of all, the accident also took away her beautiful singing voice; Renee could barely speak above a whisper. In just a few short moments, the life of this California girl was changed forever; her promising career as a high school music teacher cut short, her soaring voice all but silenced. Yet her story didn't end tragically -- not at all.
Get ready for some brutal honesty about what it's like to run your own business: The Business & Entrepreneurial Services Speaker Series at Minnesota State Community & Technical College in Detroit Lakes continues this Friday, Sept. 11 with a presentation by Fargo businessman Mike Marcil. Marcil's presentation, "Safe Ways to Fail," gets underway at 9 a.m.