Thumbs up: To a wonderful Polar Fest. All we can say is “wow!” There was so much to see and do in the frigid February cold thanks to some dedicated DL’ers. This year’s showpiece, King Isbit’s ice throne and courtyard, was truly breathtaking. The amount of creativity, from making the ice blocks to the unexpected details, was something to applaud.

Everything capped off with the stellar fireworks show, which drew a large crowd. Everyone who helped out with or attended Polar Fest should be proud.

It was so much fun that we might even think, “We can’t wait until next winter!”

Thumbs down: To “no justice.” Theresa Sayers says her grandchildren, 14 and 7, are not allowed by Indian Child Welfare services to wear “Justice for Natasha” clothing. Natasha is Natasha Thompson, the children’s mother. She was killed last year during a family gathering in Rice Lake on the White Earth Indian Reservation.

Sayers, Natasha’s mother, says that child welfare services told the children they cannot wear the clothing that pushes for justice in the case. She claims that social services told them the hoodies are not age-appropriate.

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Both the kids are in foster care.

"Nobody should have to tell them what they can and cannot wear," Sayers said.

There is likely more to this story, but we sympathize with those kids living an unimaginable nightmare. Those “Justice for Natasha” hoodies likely give them some bit of comfort, a tiny bit of connection, with others during this difficult time.

There has to be a more sensible remedy than just telling them “no.”

Thumbs up: To good citizenship. Consider this a “thumbs up” in great anticipation of great participation in upcoming elections, especially Minnesota’s new “Super Tuesday” presidential primary next week, March 3.

You might not feel as though your vote counts -- especially in a presidential primary. There are eight Democrats on the ballot; Republicans only have their incumbent, President Donald Trump.

However you feel about the choices you are given, it serves all of us to do our duty as Americans.

Consider the alternative.

Thumbs down: To racist “promposals.” We shouldn’t have to spell this out for people, but a recent rash of viral photos and videos makes this necessary, unfortunately. A “promposal” is when a high schooler goes all-out asking their date to the prom (think of it as a teenage version of the out-of-control “gender reveal” stunts).

A case this week in Devil’s Lake, N.D., again shows how far we still have to go as humans. A photo of a poster with a racist “joke” meant to be an invitation to prom went viral. And it’s not the first: The same reference to slavery was used in recent promposal photos and videos in Ottawa, California and Arizona, according to media reports.

Kids: Do better. Parents: Do better. Schools: Do better.

Bess Hauser, center, with her parents Georgia and Dick Hecock during a recent visit to Detroit Lakes. (Submitted photo)
Bess Hauser, center, with her parents Georgia and Dick Hecock during a recent visit to Detroit Lakes. (Submitted photo)

Thumbs up: To Academy Award winner-adjacent Bess Hauser. Hauser, whose parents, Dick and Georgia Hecock, are long-time Detroit Lakes residents, recently earned an associate producer’s credit on an Oscar-winning film.

That film, “The Neighbors’ Window,” won the Academy Award for Best Live Action Short Film at the ceremony earlier this month.

And, like a good neighbor, Hauser was there for filmmakers and friends Elizabeth Martin and Marshall Curry. They all live in the same Brooklyn apartment building, and Hauser let Martina nd Curry use her family’s crib as a hair and makeup area, thus earning her first IMDB credit.

Though she didn’t technically win an Oscar herself, we consider here 1 for 1 in Academy Award-winning moviemaking. We bet her extended DL family does, too.