I cover education issues for the West Central Tribune and have worked for the paper since 1995. I have worked in journalism since 1981.
Follow me on Twitter: @lindavanderwerf
- Member for
- 4 years 7 months
WILLMAR — A Willmar man who gave methamphetamine to an 11-year-old boy was sentenced Friday to jail time and chemical dependency treatment. Travis Richard Summerlet, 29, of Willmar, was charged in October in Kandiyohi County District Court with three felonies for storing meth in the presence of a child, permitting a child to use meth and for fifth-degree drug possession. In a plea agreement, two charges were dismissed, and Summerlet was sentenced for the drug possession charge.
LAKE LILLIAN — The Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office has released the name of the man whose body was found in Big Kandiyohi Lake Friday evening. The man was identified as Kim Stahl, 56, of Blomkest, according to a news release from the Sheriff's Office. Fishermen found Stahl's body floating on Big Kandi shortly after 6 p.m. Friday. Stahl's boat was also found on the lake. Stahl was pulled from the lake, and CPR was started on shore. Stahl was pronounced dead at Rice Memorial Hospital in Willmar.
LAKE LILLIAN — The body of a 56-year-old man was found in Big Kandiyohi Lake Friday evening. The Kandiyohi County Sheriff's Office received a report that fishermen had found a person floating in the lake shortly after 6 p.m. Friday, according to a news release from the Sheriff's Office. The man was pulled into the boat and taken to Big Kandi Lake County Park East, where CPR was started. The man was transported to Rice Memorial Hospital in Willmar, where he was pronounced dead. The man's identity has not been released.
WILLMAR — Joseph Alan Schleeter, 32, of New London, made his first court appearance Thursday on eight felony charges of violating a domestic abuse no-contact order. Bail was set at $50,000, and his next court date on the charges is July 31. Earlier this month, Schleeter was convicted of two felony domestic assault charges by a jury in Kandiyohi County District Court in connection with a January 2016 domestic assault on a woman at her rural New London home.
WILLMAR — Daniel Sean Wicklund, 33, of Kandiyohi, appeared Thursday in Kandiyohi County District Court on felony charges of first-degree and second-degree drug sale and third-degree drug possession. Bail for Wicklund was set at $100,000, and he is in custody at the Kandiyohi County Jail. His next court date will be June 20. Wicklund is accused of selling methamphetamine to a drug informant several times in April and May this year. Between April 27 and May 19, he allegedly sold a total of 21.8 grams of meth to the informant, according to court records.
WILLMAR — Stop by The Barn Theatre in downtown Willmar this summer, and you'll see a new attraction — a brightly painted upright piano, waiting to be played. Through the program Pianos on Parade, the Willmar Senior High School Art Club has painted a donated piano with scenes from the area in its four seasons. The piano will be outside The Barn for the summer, rain or shine, a marriage of art and music for the community to enjoy.
WILLMAR — Wyatt Allen was ready. He greeted a visitor to his trade show booth with a firm handshake and his "elevator speech" about Origin Content Development, his business providing original content for their social media marketing plans.
WILLMAR — As of Monday afternoon, no one had filed yet for an Aug. 22 special election for Willmar School Board. Filing is open until May 30 for the election to fill a vacant seat on the board. The person elected will succeed the late Jared Anez. Anez, the board's chairman, died unexpectedly in March. Candidates may file at the reception area at the school district's main office in the Willmar Education and Arts Center, 611 Fifth St. S.W. Filing is open from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. weekdays and will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 30.
WILLMAR — Ashton LaBelle of New London is off to join the Navy in July and plans to be a police officer someday. Small wonder that his senior project for DREAM Technical Academy was about motivation. Mackenzie Ouren of Willmar tackled a project that has stymied civilizations in one form or another for years — equality. To graduate from the Willmar charter school, students must complete a senior project taking at least 300 hours of work, the equivalent of three credits.
WILLMAR — The new interim president of Ridgewater College spent much of Thursday meeting faculty, staff and the community at the college's campuses in Willmar and Hutchinson. Joseph Opatz, a retired Minnesota State administrator, was chosen Wednesday by the college system's Board of Trustees. He was chosen from among three finalists. The college system will be searching for a new Ridgewater president in the fall and expects to have that person on the job for the 2018-19 school year.