Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 14 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as obituaries. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.
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DETROIT LAKES -- Sixty years ago, in July 1948, the Becker County Soil and Water Conservation District first came into being, with its official certification by the state of Minnesota. But its roots actually go back a little farther than that, explained County SWCD Administrator Brad Grant. "A group of farmers in northwest Becker County began talking about forming a conservation district in 1944," said Grant. "In order to get federal assistance for drainage (projects), you had to form a district." And in 1944, drainage was a priority.
BECKER COUNTY -- Roger Engstrom remembers milking his first cow when he was just 12 years old. "I used a milk machine -- my dad had one of the first milk machines in Becker County," says the retired Detroit Lakes dairy farmer. Engstrom, who still lives in the home where he was raised, says that his grandfather first homesteaded the property in 1893. "There's a reference in my grandmother's diary, from May 1895, about when she made her first (shopping) trip into Detroit (the 'Lakes' was added later)," Engstrom says.
For almost as long as she can remember, music -- particularly inspirational music -- has been part of Janice Ramsey's life. "When I was about seven years old, my parents, Gilbert and Adeline Olson and sister Elsie attended revival services at the Alma Lutheran Church in rural Marshall County (Minnesota)," says Janice, who grew up in the small southwestern Minnesota community of Newfolden. Inspired by the message of those meetings, Janice discovered her faith in God, and shortly afterward, sang in public for the first time. "My mother taught me a song to sing at the 90th birthday party fo
Construction is expected to begin shortly on a new white goods processing and disposal site for residents of Becker County. Once completed, residents will be able to bring their white goods -- large and small appliances -- to the site for processing and recycling. The 32-foot by 64-foot, insulated and heated building will be constructed adjacent to the Becker County Solid Waste Transfer Station. "We'll take out all the hazardous materials (on site) before bringing it out back to be crushed and sent off to the recycler," says Steve Skoog, the county's environmental services director. Th
DETROIT LAKES -- In an ongoing effort to reduce the number of repeat offenders among residents of the Becker County Jail, the County Sheriff's Department has entered into an agreement with Lakes Learning of Detroit Lakes to offer adult basic education and GED opportunities for adult inmates. The agreement was approved Tuesday by the Becker County Board of Commissioners. During a break in the board's morning session, Sheriff Tim Gordon said this program was just one more aspect of "trying to reduce recidivism from every angle possible -- education, treatment, housing, mental health counseli
John Hutchinson's new band, Vincent & the VanGoes, is so new that when he invited two of his guitar students to be a part of the band's debut performance on Feb.
DETROIT LAKES -- Though Becker County Community Health has only been in existence since Jan. 1, 2005 (when it took over the county's public health programming from Multi-County Nursing Service), it's already outgrowing its home on the first floor of the County Human Services Building. Yet if you ask people on the street what it's all about, chances are they won't have a clue. "We're one of the best kept secrets in town," said Community Health Supervisor Ronda Stock. But that's really the way it should be, she added.
DETROIT LAKES - It's the latest word in rural economic development: Entrepreneurship. Gov.
Illinois Senator Barack Obama grabbed the majority of presidential straw-poll voting in Democratic caucuses throughout the state of Minnesota Tuesday -- and Becker County was no exception. Obama received 262 votes in the Becker County straw poll, to 172 votes for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York. No other candidate's vote total went beyond single digits; there were also six votes listed as "uncommitted." Television networks began projecting Obama the Minnesota winner at 9:20 p.m.
PONSFORD - In 1947, Ray Vlasak's family decided to take their first vacation at Veronen's Resort on Bad Medicine Lake. A little less than 20 years later, in 1964, his parents bought a cabin on Bad Medicine, and nine years after that, purchased the property down the road from Veronen's that would become High Pines Resort. "It's a small resort -- there are just three cabins -- and we only rent on a long-term basis," Vlasak noted.