SPICER — If you were a part of Saturday's 38th annual Spicer WinterFest activities on the frozen shores of Saulsbury Beach, one thing most likely comes to mind when thinking of the day.
It was cold.
No, like, seriously cold.
Temperatures hardly exceeded 2 or 3 degrees throughout the entirety of the day, coupled with light winds to bring the wind chill factor to approximately -11 degrees Fahrenheit around noon as the Polar Plunge, an activity involving actively jumping into frigid Green Lake waters in the name of fundraising for Special Olympics Minnesota, kicked off.
As of the start of the event, 250 plungers had signed up, and had raised $66,385 for Special Olympics Minnesota. According to Willmar Police Department Chief Jim Felt, the money raised this year, when added to the $964,585 raised in the past means the Spicer/Willmar Polar Plunge has raised more than $1 million since it began 18 years ago.
"The support of the community has been absolutely outstanding," Felt said. "They continue to come through every year for us."
After the Polar Plunge, attendees had the chance to listen to live music, grab a sled and go sledding, cook up some s'mores with friends or watch fireworks light up the ice and snow over Green Lake as the sun set late in the afternoon.
Spicer WinterFest still has plenty of fun activities to check out in the coming days, as the event runs through early February. A full schedule for WinterFest can be found online at
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The NLS Blackcats, LQPV/DB Shadows, YME Silhouettes, Minnewaska Area Lakers and the Montevideo Gold Dusters competed in the Jazz competition Friday at the Minnesota Dance Team State Tournament. NLS, LQPV/DB, Montevideo and YME were scheduled to compete Saturday in the High Kick competition.
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Minnesota Department of Transportation announced Tuesday the new installation of LED warning signs at the intersection of Minnesota Highway 23 and Minnesota Highway 9. The move is a temporary improvement for an ongoing traffic safety study.
Community and high school art events will be printed each Wednesday in this calendar up to two weeks in advance. The deadline is noon Friday. Items may be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org with “arts calendar item” in the subject line.
After residents from 17 homes were evacuated Tuesday night, and with assistance from 23 different agencies, firefighters were able to control a blaze at Midwest Machinery in Madison, Minnesota. A citywide water restriction was enacted. Evacuees have since been allowed back in their homes.