Friday, May 14, 2010

Walleye Dan Excited for Opener

Walleye Dan Eiger says he's going to be "Anchored-up" on Gull Lake right after midnight tonight fishing with lighted bobbers, as he marks the opening of the Minnesota fishing season.

Eiger says minnows are the usual offering early in the season. He tells KLKS News, they should work well. But, he also says the water should be warm enough for leeches too.

Eiger may be especially lucky Saturday morning. Two of his three children will mark their birthdays tomorrow, and they will be in the boat with him.

Eiger runs a fishing guide service out of Lake Shore.

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Mild Weather to Greet Anglers.

The weather will cooperate for anglers as they head out for the 2010-fishing opener after midnight tonight. K-Lakes Meteorologist Tony Schumacher says early risers may want to dress warmly. He says morning lows will be in the upper 30’s. Saturday afternoon sunshine will propel the mercury to the low to mid 70’s.

Schumacher says the walleye chop will be from the southwest at 5 to 20 miles per hour. There is a slight chance of rain Sunday afternoon.

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Governor's Opener Creates Northern Excitement

The Governor's chances of catching a fish look pretty good, during his annual event promoting the sport this weekend. Governor Tim Pawlenty will be on Lake Kabetogama near International Falls.

DNR Wildlife and Fisheries Outreach Chief C. B. Bylander tells KLKS News, the fish patterns are about two to three weeks ahead of schedule, which should be good news for anglers.

About a million anglers are expected to take to the waters this weekend. Bylander tells KLKS News, Minnesota continues to lead the nation in fishing with 28 percent of the population over 16 years of age buying a license.

Bylander says scuffle between the legislature and Governor over budget problems is having no effect on the fishing excitement up north.

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New Director For CLC Foundation

Pam Thomsen of Brainerd has been named the Central Lakes College
Director of Resource Development and Foundation.

She replaces the retiring Diane Scearcy, who has been with the
Foundation since 1999, the past 10 years as director, and worked at
Central Lakes College for 21 years.

During the 2009-2010 academic year about 400 CLC students
received a total of $266,800 in scholarships and Random Acts of Kindness
aid from the Foundation.

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High Performance and Outlaws at BIR

Outlaw drag racing and high-performance race cars will add some noisy excitement to Brainerd International Raceway May 21-23.

On the quarter-mile drag strip, the 2nd Annual Street Car Showdown will crank out the kind of horsepower that generates wheelstands on the starting line. On the Competition Road Course, the National Auto Sport Association brings its high-flying brand of competitive road racing to the track for the NASA Midwest Regional Race. Fans can watch both events for a single ticket. Once inside BIR, they can go back and forth between tracks as often as they want. Racing will go on rain or shine.

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Bemidji Becomes Ground Zero in Fishing Rights Case

Two bands of Minnesota Ojibwe will make their feelings known on fishing and hunting rights in Bemidji today.

The Leech Lake and White Earth bands will demonstrate on the shores of Lake Bemidji. The bands want to reclaim hunting and fishing rights under an 1855 treaty, similiar to the successfull efforts of the Ojibwe on Mille Lacs Lake.

The tribal governments want to pursuit a diplomatic solution, while a grass roots effort is willing to fish before the season to stress their point. Both demonstrations will be on Lake Bemidji a few miles apart.

The DNR says anyone fishing illegally will be ticketed, saying the courts will decide the larger issue.

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Thursday, May 13, 2010

A Semi Hits the Ditch near Hewitt

According to the Todd County Sheriff's Office, around 6:30 this morning they responded to an accident wherein a semi trailer had rolled into the ditch east of Hewitt on Highway 210. Rick Schwiderson, the driver from Brimley, MI, received minor injuries. He was booked into the Todd County Detention Center for DUI. Formal charges are pending upon the conclusion of an investigation by the Minnesota State Patrol.

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Riverwood announces new Foundation director

Riverwood Healthcare Center welcomes John Slettom as the executive director for Riverwood Foundation. In this position, he is responsible for the strategic direction and fund development through special projects, annual campaigns and planned giving.

“We are excited to welcome John to lead our Foundation,” says Michael Hagen, Riverwood CEO. “With 35 years of fundraising and strategic planning, he has the leadership skills to take the Foundation’s growth and development to a new level. His knowledge of this community where his family has had a farm and lake home since 1970 is a huge asset as well.”

Prior to joining Riverwood, Slettom operated his own consulting business, advising donors and foundations on philanthropy issues. Some of his most significant work involves the funding of a rural health system in Bolivia , managing donor funds to build 115 acute care clinics, as well as roads and schools. He also advised clients such as the Lilly Endowment, The McKnight Foundation and several family foundations.

Slettom has strong family ties to Aitkin County , spending summers on Clear Lake with his parents, Ed and Iris Slettom, now residents of Golden Horizons in Aitkin. Ed Slettom is the founder of the Fourth of July parade and community celebration in Glen, where he has played “Uncle Sam” for a number of years.

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Olson Supports GAMC Replacement

Bemidji State Senator Mary Olson says the state budget crisis is solvable. However, she says both parties need to be flexible.

Governor Tim Pawlenty has already said he will veto the legislature's replacement for General Assistance Medical Care.

Senator Olson says the plan would involve early enrollment into the federal government's Medicaid program. She says it would provide better care with a higher reimbursement for hospitals.

Senator Olson says early enrollment would allow the state to capture seven dollars for every one dollar spent.

The Bemidji DFL-er says the proposal may be doomed because the Governor is more interested in federal politics and opposition to federal health care reform.

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Another Lake Worry

(AP) Biologists at the University of Minnesota hope they don't find what they are looking for. They will be on Minnesota lakes for the fishing opener this weekend looking for a disease they describe as Ebola for fish.

Aquaculture Specialist Nick Phelps has been coordinating the state's lookout for the virus. He says it has been responsible for a major fish kill in other states, and has made its way to the Duluth Harbor.

Phelps is asking fishermen to be on the lookout for infected fish. He says if it is found, restrictions would be placed on the body of water to prevent its spread.

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Wednesday, May 12, 2010

A Good Opener Anticipated

The fishing ought to be really good for the walleye opener this weekend, according the DNR Brainerd Area Fisheries Supervisor Tim Brastrup.

He tells KLKS News, the fish patterns are two weeks ahead of schedule because of the early ice out. The 43-year veteran of the DNR says the walleyes should be past the lethargic period that follows the spawn, and should be ready to bite.

Brastrup says minnows, especially small tailed shiners, should be a good bet. And, he says a normal, rather than slow presentation should produce results.

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Lawmen Ready for Big Weekend Influx

Excellent fishing prospects and mild weather are expected to bring a lot of folks into the Brainerd Lakes Area this weekend for the walleye fishing opener.

Sergeant Curt Mowers of the Minnesota State Patrol tells KLKS News, law enforcement will be fully staffed for the big influx of motorists. He is urging patience and will be watching for speeders.

Mowers says, they will be looking for motorists who are following too closely, and passing illegally.

He says he wants people to enjoy the lakes, but also wants them to arrive and return home safely.

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Little Falls Dog Facility Falls Quiet

(AP) A 500 dog breeding operation near Little Falls has apparently shut down. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says Bary McDuffee canceled his license March 16th.

A nieghbor who complained about the operation says she no longer hears dogs on the property, and a county official says the facility is no longer being used as a kennel.

McDuffee opened the kennel in 2007, which prompted protests and a lawsuit.

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Breezy Point Woman Dies in Auto Accident

A 42-year-old woman was killed in a one vehicle accident in Breezy Point Tuesday afternoon. Police say the woman's name is being withheld until the family has been notified.

The cause of death is pending an autopsy report.

The accident happened shortly after 1 p.m. on Alpine Drive.

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Fire Restrictions Eased

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is lifting open burning restrictions today, allowing normal spring burning practices to resume in the Brainerd Lakes Area. That's because cool, wet, and snowy weather over the past week in central and northern Minnesota has dramatically decreased the threat of wildfires.

Restrictions will remain in the far northeastern part of the state, where cool temperatures and insufficient rains have slowed the green up of vegetation.

In Carlton, Cass north of Highway 200, Cook, Itasca, Koochiching, Lake, and St. Louis counties permits will not be issued unless an exception is made by state or federal forestry agencies with fire suppression responsibilities. Campfires will be allowed throughout the restricted area, but remain limited in Cook, Lake and northern St. Louis counties.

Permits are available through state and federal forestry offices, township fire wardens, and online for a $5 annual fee. Municipalities may have stricter regulations regarding the burning of vegetation. Check with local authorities and obtain the proper permits prior to lighting a fire.

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Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Ward Urges the Governor to Compromise

State Representative John Ward says the Legislature is not going to walk away from the table, but will continue to negociate with Governor Tim Pawlenty until the nearly $3 billion revenue shortfall has been solved.

Representative Ward says the DFL leadership has accepted 85 percent of the Governor’s spending cuts. The other 15 percent would be in the form of a tax increase..

The $400 million tax increase the Governor finds objectionable would be on the top three percent of wage earners.

Ward remains optimistic the legislature can finish up before the scheduled end of the session Monday.

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Monday, May 10, 2010

Merrifield Man Wounded in Shooting

A 54-year-old Merrifield man was airlifted to North Memorial Medical Center in Robbinsdale, the victim of a weekend shooting. The Crow Wing County Sheriff’s Office says Randy James Lebarron was shot in the face just before 10 p.m. Sunday. He was taken to St. Joseph’s Medical Center in Brainerd, before being transferred to Robbinsdale.

About an hour after the shooting, Sheriff’s deputies arrested 51-year-old Michael Lloyd Daly, also of Merrifield. He was arrested a short distance from the crime scene on Semmler Road in Lake Edward Township. Daly is being held in the Crow Wing County Jail pending formal charges.

The shooting was the result of a confrontation between the two men.

The Sheriff anticipates assault and attempted murder charges from the Crow Wing County Attorney’s office.

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Klobuchar Welcomes the Kagan Review

Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar, is looking forward to considering Solicitor General Kagan's nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Klobuchar, a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, says a Justice should demonstrate, "An independent breadth of mind and character, with an open-minded, fair approach to the facts and the law."

Klobuchar described Kagan as extremely intelligent, bringing a wide variety of legal experience to the bench, having spent time in government, private practice, as a professor, and as the first woman dean of the Harvard Law School.

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Sunday, May 9, 2010

Man Killed in Ambulance Identified

The Minnesota State Patrol has released the name of a 71-year old patient killed in an ambulance crash near Cloquet. The patrol says Iven Othuoudt of Remer was being transported from one hospital to another for a medical procedure when the crash happened Friday night. He was dead at the scene.

Authorities say the ambulance was heading East on U.S. Highway 2 when it hit an icy area, sideswiped an SUV that had stopped on the shoulder, then clipped a guardrail and rolled into the ditch.

The ambulance driver and passenger were treated and released from a Cloquet Hospital. The driver of the SUV was not hurt.

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Anglers May Find Low Waters For The Opener

Minnesota anglers heading to Saturday's fishing opener may find low water levels at some boat landings. Launching and retrieving a boat is more challenging when water levels are low. The DNR says some lakes in central, eastern and northeastern Minnesota are down a foot to two feet.

DNR public water access program coordinator, Nancy Stewart, says some concrete ramps may not be long enough when boatrs are launched on lakes with low water. Stewart says a boater could damage equipment if trailer tires fall off the ramp end. When launching boats in low water, check the firmness of gravel at the end of the ramp, wear hip boots or waders and help guid the boat into the water and for lake obstructions.

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