A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers county government and regional news with the West Central Tribune.
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WILLMAR -- Following what will surely be known as Minnesota's greatest transportation tragedy, a local Minnesota Department of Transportation official said he has confidence in the state's bridge inspectors. While expressing shock about the collapse of the Interstate 35W bridge on Wednesday and sympathy for the victims, Dave Trooien, MnDOT District 8 engineer in Willmar, said drivers shouldn't be overly concerned about the safety of other bridges in the state. "We're concerned about the people driving on the roads and the safety of people," Trooien said.
WILLMAR -- The process for how the city of Willmar makes zoning decisions and approves or denies conditional use permits was discussed Wednesday during a joint meeting of the City Council and the Planning Commission. No action was taken to make any changes in the current system, but Mayor Les Heitke said "My hunch is, they'll think about it." The primary issue is whether the City Council, or the Planning Commission, should be the final authority when a conditional use permit is denied. When conditional use permits are requested, the Planning Commission reviews the application, views the pro
SPICER -- In a room full of women named Lois, about the only name you won't hear uttered is Lois. Instead, it's: "Pass the coffee, Peterson." "Runge, how was your trip to India?" or "Rouser, how are the grandchildren?" It's only the uninformed who start a conversation with, "Hi, Lois" only to have every head in the room turn to look. Since 1987, on the fifth Tuesday of any given month, area women who share the name of Lois have been getting together to share a meal and some laughs. "I think we should be called the laugh-a-lot players," said Lois View, of Lake Lillian, a charter member of t
WILLMAR -- For four days, Trisha Appeldorn met face to face with a steady stream of Minnesota National Guard soldiers as they completed the final leg of their 22-month deployment. The Kandiyohi County veterans service officer spent about 10 minutes with individual soldiers, inquiring about their physical and mental health and helping them fill out paperwork that will get them the Veterans Administration health care benefits they are entitled to receive. Appeldorn was one of 28 county officers who spent a week in July at Fort McCoy, Wis., to process paperwork for new veterans from several sta
WILLMAR -- The Kandiyohi Area Transit system was praised Friday for its financial operations. Calling KAT a "fine example" of a well-run public entity, Jim Ruff, an outside auditor, said the transit system is a "well-run organization" with an excellent set of financial statements that warranted a clean opinion.
GROVE CITY -- In an agreement that both sides say is mutually acceptable, longtime Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City teacher, principal and superintendent Pamela Kyllingstad has resigned. Her letter of resignation and agreement for early retirement was accepted during a special meeting Friday morning that lasted only five minutes. Her last day is Aug.
A glowing chandelier, just like you'd find hanging above any American dining room table, will be suspended in the sky above an entire two-story house in New London on Saturday evening. Held aloft by helium-filled weather balloons that will be tethered in the yard at 117 Birch Street, the chandelier will be part of a one-day art show in the home of Andrew Nordin and Lisa Bergh. "I think it'll be beautiful to look at," said Bergh.
NEW LONDON -- There was always hope that Teddy Dengerud would come home.
GROVE CITY -- Residents from each of the three towns in the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School District, as well as school staff members, are being asked to participate in four separate community meetings to help create a plan for the school's future. The meetings, which will be facilitated by researchers from Minnesota State University-Mankato, will take place during the first two weeks of August. The School Board will hold a special meeting Aug. 20 to hear the groups' recommendations, which could be used to create an "action plan" for the district, according to Dr.
GROVE CITY -- The Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City School Board is expected to receive a letter of resignation/early retirement from Pamela Kyllingstad during a special meeting at 7:30 a.m. Friday at the district office conference room. Kyllingstad has been with the district for 30 years and had been superintendent since 1982 before she was replaced July 1 by interim Superintendent Dr. Keith Redfield.