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Although unemployment still remains high, Sen. Amy Klobuchar sees some glimmers of hope that the U.S. economy is on the mend. "I can say that things have improved from three or months ago," said Klobuchar, a Democrat and Minnesota's senior senator. What's important is to keep moving forward, she told an audience in Willmar today. Klobuchar spoke at the annual Women's Expo, hosted by the West Central Tribune and Affiliated Community Medical Centers.
Chad Lewis, author of the newly published "Minnesota Road Guide to Gangster Hot Spots," relied on contemporary news coverage to reconstruct many of the details of the robberies, kidnappings, crime sprees and shoot-outs that fill the book. The famous Bank of Willmar robbery, on July 15, 1930, was chronicled in detail in the Willmar Tribune. "Bank of Willmar Robbed of $70,000" the headline blared.
The morning of July 15, 1930, was warm, sunny and tranquil -- until it erupted in a storm of bullets as a gang of five armed men robbed the Bank of Willmar, making off with thousands of dollars in cash and bonds.
WILLMAR -- The audience sat on folding chairs in the WEAC rehearsal hall Monday night as they watched a 24-minute rough cut of Luis Argueta's film in progress, a documentary about the 2008 immigration raid on a meatpacking plant in Postville, Iowa. Near the end of an open discussion afterwards with the filmmaker, a woman in the audience got to the point. Now that we've seen the film, what should we do?
WILLMAR -- There used to be a time when Rice Memorial Hospital had 60 or more patients occupying beds on a daily basis. Then the number slid to 50, then to 40. Inpatient volume has dropped sharply again in the past couple of months, and hospital officials are beginning to suspect this might be permanent. Patient admissions are 10 to 12 percent lower than they were a year ago, said Bill Fenske, the hospital's chief financial officer. "For much of September we were seeing a census in the 20s," he said. The big question, Fe-nske said, is this: "Are we at the bottom yet?" Patient volumes and
WILLMAR -- If you show up in Rice Memorial Hospital's emergency room with symptoms of influenza, be prepared to put on a mask. It's one of the steps the hospital is taking to try to limit the growing spread of influenza. The number of people arriving in the emergency room with influenza-like illnesses has been on the rise, said Kathy Hunt, director of critical care services at Rice. "I'm thinking we're gearing up for the real thing," she said.
WILLMAR -- More women are seeking to delay pregnancy or have fewer children because of the economic impact of the recession. Many of them also report being worse off financially than they were a year ago, and there's a small percent who are sometimes skipping birth control because of the cost. The newly released report by the Guttmacher Institute provides a snapshot of how the recession is affecting women's health decisions -- findings that are echoed in what Planned Parenthood has been observing at its clinics in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota. "What we're seeing is something ver
WILLMAR -- If you think you might have influenza, should you see a doctor? Behind the scenes, health officials are worried about the potential for widespread flu -- both the seasonal and the novel H1N1 types -- to swamp the medical system with patients who perhaps are better off staying home. Officials at Affiliated Community Medical Centers said Wednesday that they're following national recommendations for who should be evaluated and treated for suspected H1N1 influenza, often referred to as swine flu. People between the ages of 5 and 65 who are in generally good health and are not pregnan
WILLMAR -- Local demand for the seasonal influenza vaccine has been so high that Affiliated Community Medical Centers has stopped scheduling appointments for people to come in and get their flu shots. At many places around Minnesota, people might have to wait a little longer this fall to receive the seasonal flu vaccine.
Updated 4:30 p.m.