A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 4 years 8 months
PENNOCK — A popular greenhouse business west of Willmar will reopen this year with a new name and new owner. The new name is Creekside Greenhouses and the new owner is Lisa Grindberg. The 31-year-old North Dakota native, who has a degree in horticulture and 12 years of experience in the greenhouse business in Fargo, North Dakota, purchased the rural Pennock farm — located seven miles north of Pennock on Kandiyohi County Road 1 — that had previously operated as Frank's Greenhouses for more than 30 years.
WILLMAR — The results of a survey taken this winter by Kandiyohi County farmers are being tabulated and analyzed. The answers from the 51 farmers who responded to the voluntary Agriculture Producers Business Retention and Expansion survey could provide a glimpse into how local farmers currently operate and their concerns for staying in business in the future.
GLENWOOD — Fire sprinklers did their job at the Minnewaska High School Thursday night and helped contain a fire to a science room. "Damage is fairly minor," said Superintendent Greg Schmidt. "We're thankful it was limited to one room and no one was hurt." Most of the damage was caused by smoke and water in the east academic wing of the one-story building, which houses the district's 4-12 graders. As a precaution to prevent students and staff from experiencing physical problems from the lingering smoke, all the classes were cancelled Friday in the district.
SPICER — Ed Pirrotta was the kind of man who could see the skills and good intentions in a person and help coax those gifts out in ways that will live on in the Spicer city park for years. Under his leadership, Pirrotta shepherded nearly 1,000 volunteers to build the massive Wildcat Cove playground at the Spicer downtown park during a seven-day period — three shifts a day — back in 2007. Pirrotta was there for every shift.
WILLMAR — A potential 40-degree drop in temperature overnight could push in a cold front and dangerously high winds into west central Minnesota. Temperatures are expected to reach nearly 70 degrees today and then plummet to about 30 degrees tonight. According to the National Weather Service, there's a chance of severe thunderstorms — and possibly a brief tornado — Monday afternoon and evening with damaging wind gust of 45 to 60 mph.
NEW LONDON — For several months after the ground-breaking celebration in August, it was hard to see any progress at all on the $20.6 million, multi-faceted construction project in the New London-Spicer School District. But kind of like an iceberg where only the tip of the massive structure shows, the underground work of snaking utilities to the site and setting deep footings for the structures to be built upon was taking place. "We did a lot of work underground that people didn't see," said Josh Schwinghammer, project superintendent with Winkelman Building Corp.
BELGRADE — A 16-year-old Belgrade boy was killed in a one-vehicle crash Saturday morning. According to the Stearns County Sheriff's Department, Austin Young was driving a 1997 Chevy truck south on Stearns County Road 197, about two miles south of Belgrade, when his vehicle went off the road on a curve and hit a tree. Young was pronounced dead at the scene of the crash, which was reported at 9:42 a.m. There were no passengers and no other vehicles were involved, according to the Sheriff's report. The crash is still under investigation
ALBANY — A rural Albany man and his three young sons escaped their burning home late Saturday night. All four suffered smoke inhalation. According to the Stearns County Sheriff's Office, the fire was reported shortly before midnight in the 36000 block of 245 Avenue in Albany Township. When the Stearns County Sheriff's Office and Albany Fire Department arrived, flames were coming out of the northwest windows of the two story house.
PAYNESVILLE — A pilot was seriously injured when his small, experimental plane crashed Saturday afternoon in a field near the Paynesville Airport. According to the Stearns County Sheriff's Office, Michael Jude, 71, of St. Cloud was flying from the Clear Lake Airport to the Paynesville Airport when the engine of his fixed-wing single engine plane began to overheat. Jude attempted to land but then aborted the landing.
NEW ULM — The Catholic Diocese of New Ulm, which includes 15 west central Minnesota counties, filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Friday morning. The action was taken in response to 101 lawsuits filed against the diocese and some parishes in the diocese by victims and survivors of child sex abuse perpetrated by clergy. The diocese said financial reorganization was the "fairest way to resolve sexual abuse claims" and to carry out the mission of the church.