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LANCASTER, Minn. — A 34-year-old Lancaster man died in a one-vehicle crash in the early morning hours Saturday. A news release from the Minnesota State Patrol said Adam Thomas Norskog was northbound on U.S. Highway 59 about 1:30 a.m. when the 2014 Ram pickup he was driving left the roadway and entered the west ditch at the intersection of Kittson County Road 5.
DRAYTON, N.D.—Harris A. Peterson was a specialty crops pioneer who built a buckwheat empire, but friends and family of the founder of Minn-Dak Growers Ltd. say he also was a determined man who always had more work to do. Full of ideas and stuffed with trusted advice, Peterson still was meeting international clients this fall at age 92. He died Saturday, Jan. 27, in Grand Forks. "It was still his company, and he felt he was in charge and in command right up until the time he passed," said his son, Harold Peterson, who lives on the home farm 4 miles east of Drayton.
GRAND FORKS — You might want to set your alarms just a bit earlier Wednesday morning, Jan. 31, if you don't want to miss something that happens only once in a "super blue blood moon." Michael Gaffey, a Chester Fritz Distinguished professor in the University of North Dakota Space Studies Department, said the lunar trifecta happens only once every two to three years when the timing and alignment of the sun, Earth and moon are just right.
THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn. — Mayor Brian Holmer said the Thief River Falls City Council recently approved the equivalent of an environmental study to put Digi-Key Electronics one step closer to breaking ground on its $300 million expansion project. "It's a big step moving forward to the next level," he said. "It's going to have all their electronic components in there and the state-of-the-art picking and packing system to get their products out globally."
GRAND FORKS, N.D. — "This is a terrible business idea." Marie Strinden Jensen has heard the harsh words more than once about her Fighting Sawks storefront in downtown Grand Forks. This isn't New York City, they might say. Or, Grand Forks isn't big enough to support a store that sells just socks.
ERSKINE, Minn. — Just a skip past U.S. Highway 2 and a bump over the railroad tracks, the Ness Cafe has been a staple in the heart of Minnesota lakes country for going on 106 years. In the restaurant that's nearly as old as the town itself, thousands of platters piled high with double-scooped mashed potatoes, thick-cut roast beef and rich, homemade gravy have passed through the swinging kitchen door since 1912.
CROOKSTON — The city of Crookston will explore options to ban weapons during certain events in the Crookston Sports Center after the Park Board voted in favor of such a ban last week. City Administrator Shannon Stassen said Monday the discussion was prompted by a report of a man carrying an open weapon in October at The Big One Art & Craft Fair in the Sports Center. Stassen said the man was allowed to stay after he proved he had the proper permit for "open carry," but the situation still raised concerns from the public.
Editor's note: This story originally was published on November 26, 2017. CLIMAX, Minn. — He isn't sure exactly when it started, but John Vraa says it seems he's been collecting curious things for a lifetime. He started out small. First, it probably was interesting rocks. Then later, tools and books that once belonged to his great-grandfather's brother who shared his name.
WARSAW, N.D. — If little else remains in some of the tiny towns that dot the landscape of rural North Dakota, the churches still stand tall as a monument to the strong faith of the people who first settled there. The double steeples of St. Stanislaus Catholic Church in Warsaw seemed to reach for the clouds on a recent fall day as workers scaled the church to repair damages from a previous windstorm. The church is 116 years old and is on the National Historic Registry.
Dozens of tiny towns popped up on the prairies of North Dakota and Minnesota in the late 1800s and early 1900s. Just specks on the map and a dust cloud away from a gravel road or highway, remnants of the once bustling towns still stand. Some say if you blink you might miss them, but there is so much more than the eye can see. Faith, family, community spirit and creative commerce built them. More of the same keeps the heart of these tiny towns beating today.