Tom Cherveny is a regional and outdoor reporter with the West Central Tribune in Willmar, MN.
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GRANITE FALLS — The public turnout at a series of open house meetings was small, although the question they addressed is big. Should Yellow Medicine County construct a proposed $8.1 million structure to replace its courthouse in Granite Falls, originally built in 1889 and expanded sometime in the 1950s? The county hosted the meetings to explain the proposal. It saw turnouts ranging from four in Canby to 10 in Clarkfield on Monday and 17 in Granite Falls on Tuesday. The County Board of Commissioners wants to inform the public as the county moves forward with decisions on what do about
MURDOCK — Transport trucks are traveling as far as Kansas and Nebraska and waiting as long as 10 to 15 hours at terminals to fetch propane needed to dry corn being harvested in west central Minnesota this year. Propane distributors in the region are struggling to keep pace with the demand this year, due both to the wet conditions across the Upper Midwest and constrictions in the supply to the region. “It’s just a bad deal,’’ said Dean Isaacson, general manager of West-Con, headquartered in Holloway. West-Con unloaded 250,000 bushels of wet corn on the ground Thursday to hold it until it can
WILLMAR — After months of stalemate over a new five-year extension of the farm bill, Seventh District Congressman Collin Peterson is optimistic that a House and Senate conference committee will hammer out the differences and bring one to a vote. He believes votes could be held in both chambers by Thanksgiving. “I can kind of see where the end thing is, but they have to work this out,’’ said U.S. Rep. Peterson, D-Minn., ranking member of the House agriculture committee.
RENVILLE — Having operated at a loss for the past few years, MinAqua Fisheries Inc. of Renville has filed for bankruptcy protection and ceased operations, according to the attorney assigned the case. Attorney Brian Leonard, of Minneapolis, said he is now actively searching for a buyer for the MinAqua facility in Renville, and looking to sell the fish remaining in its tanks. MinAqua’s assets will be liquidated under Chapter 7 bankruptcy proceedings. The only farmer-cooperative aquaculture operation in Minnesota has been raising tilapia at the facility since October 1997.
RENVILLE — A wet autumn and freezing conditions have taken a toll on this this year’s sugar beet harvest Sugar beet growers in west central Minnesota will not harvest an estimated 25,000 acres, or about 21 percent of the 118,000 acres planted for the Southern Minnesota Beet Sugar Cooperative, according to the Cooperative. The Cooperative’s shareholders were notified earlier this week that the it would not accept any additional beets starting at 3 a.m. on Tuesday.
GRANITE FALLS — Prosecutors refused to hear Andrew Joseph Dikken’s offer to plead guilty to second-degree murder in the shooting deaths of Kara Monson, 26, of Granite Falls, and Christopher Panitzke, 28, of Redwood Falls. Prosecutor Robert Plesha with the Minnesota Attorney General’s office told District Judge Thomas Van Hon that the state has filed notice it will bsse convening a grand jury in the case to seek a first-degree murder indictment in the double homicide. The development in the case came at a Wednesday morning court hearing in Granite Falls at which Dikken, 28, of Renville, had i
GRANITE FALLS — Prosecutors refused to hear Andrew Joseph Dikken’s offer to plead guilty to second-degree murder in the shooting deaths of Kara Monson, 26, of Granite Falls, and Christopher Panitzke, 28, of Redwood Falls. Prosecutor Robert Plesha with the Minnesota Attorney General’s office told District Judge Thomas Van Hon that the state has filed notice it will be convening a grand jury in the case.
In the movies the heroes usually swoop in with capes fluttering on their backs or atop trusty steeds galloping at full speed. At the Lac qui Parle Valley High School, they walk over from their classrooms or drive a blue bus powered by used cooking oil. “Some people look at us like we’re crazy,’’ laughed Lesley Heyl, who drove Bettie the Blue Bus.
MILAN — Chuck Waibel and Carol Ford solved one problem. In their 2009 book, “The Northlands Winter Greenhouse Manual,” the Milan couple told the world how to build affordable, passive solar greenhouses to produce fresh greens for winter consumption in northern latitudes. Waibel was in the process of solving the next problem: How to develop a regional network of winter greenhouse producers for the local foods economy. He had been awarded a Bush Fellowship to pursue his goal this year. A few months later he was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer.
OLIVIA - Olivia Mayor Suzanne Hilgert has ordered that all flags flying over public property within Olivia city limits be lowered to half staff from Thursday, October 24th until the evening of Friday, October 25, 2013 in honor of the passing of Mary Page, former Olivia mayor, Renville County commissioner, and University of Minnesota regent. “Our community has suffered a great loss with the passing of Mary Page” Mayor Hilgert