Prep Scores from Friday
Deer River 136
Blackduck/Cass Lake-Bena/Indus 123
East Grand Forks/Sacred Heart 77
North Wright County 7, Cambridge-Isanti/Mora/Pine City 1
Warroad 6, West Fargo, ND 2
Thief River Falls/Goodridge/W-A-O 4, Crookston Pirates 1
Badger/Greenbush-Middle River 46, Blackduck 21
Bertha-Hewitt 47, Pillager 36
Brainerd 71, St. Cloud Apollo 58
Fergus Falls 66, Sartell 58
Little Falls 50, Rocori 37
McGregor 64, Silver Bay 23
Mora 60, St. Cloud Cathedral 53
New London-Spicer 74, Long Prairie-Grey Eagle 41
Ogilvie 56, Aitkin 45
Pine River-Backus 66, Clearbrook-Gonvick 55
Sebeka 73, New York Mills 43
St. Cloud Tech 66, Sauk Rapids-Rice 47
West Central 55, Dilworth-Glyndon-Felton 49
Aitkin 77, Ogilvie 42
Badger/Greenbush-Middle River 78, Blackduck 51
Browerville 51, Royalton 43
Crosby-Ironton 54, Staples-Motley 46
Detroit Lakes 50, Wadena-Deer Creek 36
Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted 70, Pierz 39
McGregor 61, Silver Bay 58--2 OT
Pequot Lakes 94, Park Rapids 21
Pine River-Backus 65, Frazee 51
2 Area Women Ejected From Runaway Dogsled
(AP) What started out as a 75th birthday celebration turned into a wild ride for two women taking a sled dog excursion on the Paul Bunyan Trail near Brainerd.
The women were aboard a sled pulled by 15 dogs when their owner stopped to adjust a harness. As she was heading back to the sled, the dogs snapped a line and took off on Friday.
Passengers Dianne Lindvall and Shirley Connolly were pulled by the unmanned sled before being thrown off. Both women were injured but not seriously, and connolly who celebrating her 75th birthday, was taken to the hospital.
Officers stopped the dogs by grabbing their lines and jumping on the sled. The pack was halted nearly three miles from where it took off.
CL Winterfest This Weekend
It appears the weather is smiling for Crosslake's Winterfest
Tonight, revelers will experience horse drawn wagon rides, a big old bonfire and pond skating.
Saturday will feature ice sculpture demonstrations, antique snowmobile rally, ice car races and soupfest (serving begins at noon).
A medallion hunt began Thursday. The first clue was, "Winterfest is here, we are lucky to have snow, Our activities are many, and the cold brings us a glow. Some people go South for the Winter season, But we say stay here, for a very good reason. "
Today's clue is, "The reason is clear, the medallion is here, Route 66 and County Road 3, Is this the area you need to be? Make the right choice and you will see, the lucky winner you will be."
RXR Work on Hwy 10 Motley
Burlington Northern Santa Fe railroad crews will be conducting repairs on the railroad tracks located on Highway 10 in Motley beginning at 6:00 a.m. on Monday, February 7.
Judy Jacobs, spokesperson for the Minesota Department of Transportation says motoristswill encounter single lane closure in each direction on Highway 10 and right or left turn lane closures in the area where crews are working.
Work is scheduled to be completed by 6:00p.m., weather permitting
Slew Of Charges Against Swanville Man
A 43-year-old Swanville man is being charged in connection with a home invasion in Grey Eagle last year.
Robert John Wilder is accused of breaking into the home of an elderly woman October 30th. He is charged with kidnapping, criminal sexual conduct, burglary, assault with a deadly weapon and making terroristic threats.
Wilder is currently being held in the Crow Wing County Jail on criminal charges in Brainerd.
Polyment Cuts Jobs Before Plant Opens
(AP) There will be no finished copper produced at the proposed Hoyt Lakes Mine.
Parent company Polymet says cutting the production from the proposal will save $127 million. It will also mean that 10 percent of the jobs have also been cut.
The company plans to produce metal concentrates that would be processed off-site. The second phase would process nickel concentrate, also off-site.
In addition to cutting costs, the changes would reduce environmental impacts.
Eighth District Congressman Chip Cravaack has made opening the plant a top priority. He wants to hold a closed-door meeting with all interested parties.
Rankin Prepares for National Service
Today is the last official day Chip Rankin will be on duty as Principal of Pequot Lakes High School Patriots, because he is a patriot. Soon, he is on duty in Afghanistan. Rankin is a member of the National Guard.
A pep fest and departure rally for Rankin will be held from 2:45-3:15 in the high school gym today.
Middle Level Principal Randy Hanson tells KLKS News, he will be missed.
Rankin will train for three months at Camp Ripley. He will serve a one year tour in Afghanistan and should be back in Pequot Lakes in April, 2012.
Hanson will be named as interim High School Principal and Amy LaBarre will become the Middle School Principal pending school board approval
Thursday Night High School Scores
Alexandria 61, Brainerd 42
Blackduck 76, Walker-Hackensack-Akeley 53
Browerville 61, Menahga 47
Hill City 53, Little Fork-Big Falls 45
Little Falls 61, Fergus Falls 58
Long Prairie-Grey Eagle 68, New London-Spicer 50
Milaca 59, Albany 42
New York Mills 57, Bertha-Hewitt 53
Sebeka 82, Pillager 44
Verndale 52, Henning 50
Braham 85, Aitkin 30
Browerville 60, St. John's Prep 42
Isle 63, Onamia 30
Parkers Prairie 77, Verndale 36
Pierz 51, Eden Valley-Watkins 40
Red Lake 96, Nay-Ah-Shing 14
Red Lake County 77, Cass Lake-Bena 32
Staples-Motley 62, Crosby-Ironton 52
Upsala 90, Swanville 41
Walker-Hackensack-Akeley 76, Blackduck 36
Brainerd/Pierz/Pillager 2, Willmar 1
Little Falls 3, Sauk Rapids-Rice 2
Red Lake County Central/Red Lake Falls 4, Park Rapids/Menahga/Nevis 1
Brainerd/Little Falls 1, Willmar 0
Thief River Falls 3, Park Rapids 2
Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale 44, Browerville/Eagle Valley 33
Milaca/Faith Christian 53, Chisago Lakes 9
Gazelka Predicts Budget Pain for All
The Minnesota State Senate is expected to take up a budget cutting bill today. State Senator Paul Gazelka of Brainerd expects it will look a lot like the house cuts passed earlier.
Gazelka tells KLKS News, there will be pain for many. However, he says he is trying to lessen the impact on nursing home payments locally. He says there is a three tier system now, in which the Brainerd area gets the least amount. He wants to reduce it down to two tiers.
Gazelka says everybody is going to have to be part of the solution.
A Super Bowl Warning
The Minnesota State Patrol will have an extra effort going for Super Bowl Sunday.
Sergent Curt Mowers of the Brainerd region, tells KLKS News, between 2007 and 2009, there were 18 hundred accidents the day of the big game, and five of those resulted in fatalities. He says those who will be drinking must find someone to drive them home.
On another matter, Sergent Mowers says fish houses with built-in wheels must be licensed as a trailer. Permanent fish houses must be off area lakes by March 7th.
No Beer for C.W. Fair
The Crow Wing County Fair will remain beer-free.
The Oak Lawn Township board voted unanimously to keep the suds out.
Fair Manager Steve Hesse says fair sponsorships have been on the decline during the sour economic times, and beer could help bring in much needed funds. He said the beer garden would serve only beer and would be fully enclosed.
However, the town board heard from others who worried about drunk drivers and keeping the fair a family event.
The Crow Wing County Fair charges no admission for entrance.
Area Man Arrested for Sledding While Intoxicated
(AP) A 25-year-old Bowlus man found himself in jail orange for snowmobiling while intoxicated.
The Sheriff got a call about a possibly drunk driver. When they found him on a road near St. Steven, he refused to stop, and took-off across a field. However, he hit a barbed wire fence disabling his sled. Lawmen found him next to the machine.
Hecker Will Soon Be Sentenced
(AP) The attorney representing former auto mogul Denny Hecker is requesting no more than 8 years prison time. Bill Mauzy says he ought to get credit for pleading guilty well in advance of a trial.
Prosecutors are asking for the maximum 10 years. He is scheduled for sentencing February 11th in Minneapolis.
Mauzy wants Hecker to serve his time at the federal prison in Duluth where he can be treated for chemical dependency.
Hecker was the largest auto dealer in Minnesota before his down-fall, including two dealerships in Baxter, which have since been sold.
Area Counties Plan to Save Dollars
Crow Wing and Todd Counties are pairing-up to save money in human services.
Crow Wing County administrator Tim Houle says they want to achieve better customer outcomes with fewer resources.
It is a pilot project sponsored by the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce and funded through the Bush Foundation.
The five month study focused on how to better serve customers receiving community services, especially those receiving multiple health and human services with fewer taxpayer dollars.
Social services administrators in Crow Wing and Todd Counties say they intend to immediately implement the changes. Other changes will require legislative approval. The counties, together with the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce as well as regional chambers of commerce, will help carry this message to Minnesota legislators.
P.L. Updates Its Comp Plan
Pequot Lakes is in the process of updating its Comprehensive Plan, which guides the future growth, development and decision-making of the community.
City officials say it answers three questions: What is the community like today? What does the community want to become? How is it going to get there? The Comprehensive Plan was last updated in 2004.
The city wants the public to weigh in. The City has established a website (www.pequotplanning.info) that will allow interested persons to view the draft goals and policies, note whether they agree or disagree, provide comments on the goals, and even submit new ideas. Residents may also view a hard copy of the goals and strategies and provide written comments at City Hall, if they prefer.
Bomb Threat at YMCA
The Brainerd Family YMCA was evacuated just before 4:30 p.m. Wednesday following a bomb threat.
Police and staff sent youngsters out into the cold after a bomb threat was discovered written on a wall in a changing room.
Law enforcement and staff searched the building. No device was discovered.
There were no injuries, and the kids were sent home. Evening events were canceled.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call Brainerd police at (218) 829-2805.
High School Rankings
1. Braham (18-1)
9. Pequot Lakes (17-1)
1. Parkers Prairie (16-0)
6. Upsala (17-0)
1. Plainview-Elgin-Millville (18-1)
5. Pequot Lakes (12-4)
9. Perham (13-3)
1. Sebeka (14-0)
Ground Hog Predictions
Both Punxsutawney Phil and Jimmy from Sun Prairie, Wisconsin did not see their shadows at sunrise today. The pair of buck-tooth critters would argue that we will see an early spring this year.
However, KLKS Meteorologist Tony Schumacher says there may be a spoiler out there. He says Duluth has porcupine that did see his shadow.
Schumacher says he does see some warming in the next three to five weeks, that should produce temperature 30 degrees warmer than the coldest days of winter so far.
The Real Ground Hog Story
A ground hog is actually a woodchuck, according to Brainerd DNR Non-Game Specialist Pam Perry. It is large rodent, which is generally harmless, if you can keep them out of the garden. She says they want to eat everything.
Perry says the only reason we think they can predict an early spring, is because we get a little "Cabin Feverish" this time of year.
Perry says great horned owls are in a nest-making mode now. She says they are known as the tiger of the woods, and have been known to take small dogs and cats.
Nominations Needed for Award in Philanthropy
The Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation is seeking nominations for its seventh annual Award in Philanthropy.
Director Mike Burton tells KLKS News, the award recognizes the work of an individual, couple or family that has significantly added to philanthropy in the region.
The recipient in 2010 was the Cote Family.
Deadline to submit a nomination is Friday. Forms are available online at
LeMieur Backs Billion Dollar Cut
State Representative Mike LeMieur is please the state house has passed a $1 billion budget cutting measure.
The Little Falls Republican says it is obvious the state is out of money, and needs to respond to a projected $6.2 billion revenue shortfall.
The Republican controlled house has been criticized for submitting a budget cutting plan before the Governor has had a chance to offer his budget recommendations.
DFL State Representative John Ward of Brainerd says the Republican sponsored cuts would result in higher college tuition and would effect veterans, small businesses, working families and seniors
Cravaack Pushes Copper Mining
Minnesota Congressman Chip Cravaack is following through on a campaign promise to push the development of the state's first copper mine near Hoyt Lakes.
The 8th District Republican claims he is not attempting to circumvent environmental reviews for the Polyment Mining Company, he simply wants to act as a facilitator for a project that would bring jobs.
Cravaack says he wants the meeting to include tribal officials, Polymet and Governor Mark Dayton.
Tuesday Night High School Scores
Aitkin 42, Rush City 39
Cass Lake-Bena 58, Crosby-Ironton 47
East Central 55, Onamia 38
Hill City 74, Nashwauk-Keewatin 55
Little Falls 56, Brainerd 44
Long Prairie-Grey Eagle 63, Melrose 49
McGregor 82, Carlton 62
Northome/Kelliher 85, Bug-O-Nay-Ge-Shig 38
Perham 81, Staples-Motley 36
Pine River-Backus 65, Park Rapids 33
Sebeka 62, Browerville 53
St. John's Prep 65, Royalton 43
Upsala 60, Eagle Valley 56
Verndale 53, Underwood 52
Wadena-Deer Creek 45, Bertha-Hewitt 42
Bertha-Hewitt 61, Henning 47
Crosby-Ironton 80, Hill City 29
Detroit Lakes 50, Wadena-Deer Creek 46
East Central 63, Northland 52
Isle 74, Aitkin 37
Pierz 58, Osakis 41
Pillager 45, Menahga 39
Pine River-Backus 57, Nevis 40
St. Cloud Cathedral 58, Milaca 46
St. Cloud Tech 54, Little Falls 49
Verndale 51, New York Mills 42
Brainerd/Perz/Pillager 8, St. Cloud Apollo 0
Northern Lakes 3, Bagley/Fosston/Clearbrook-Gonvick 1
Brainered/Little Falls 2, St. Cloud Ice Breakers 1
Park Rapids Area 5, Detroit Lakes/Perham 4
Pequot Lakes/Pine River -Backus 45, Browerville/Eagle Valley 27
Minnewaska 39, Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale 33
Pierz 45, Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa 16
Aitkin 45, Holdingford 27
Royalton/Upsala 33, Aitkin 30
Royalton/Upsala 40, Holdingford 16
Ward Urges Local Control on Salary Issues
State Representative John Ward says there may have to be a freeze of Minnesota school workers salaries to offset decreased funding. However, he says that decision should be made locally, and not by the state.
Ward, a former educator, says Republicans generally support local determination. He tells KLKS News, he is surprised they want to have it both ways on this issue.
Ward says a bill has already be introduced in the State House that cuts significantly into higher education, health and human services and local government aid. He says if it is signed into law it will result in higher college tuition and will effect veterans, small business, working families and seniors
P.L. School Bond Referendum Feb 8th
Next Tuesday voters in the Pequot Lakes School District will decide the fate of a $33 million bond referendum.
Middle School Principal Randy Hanson says Eagle View Elementary school has become overcrowded. He says the seven-year-old building was designed for 28 sections of students, but they currently have 32 classes. As a result, the media center, computer room, music room and science lab have been converted into classrooms.
The same referendum failed by 250 votes last spring.
Hanson tells KLKS News, it's not true that older voters won't support the schools. He says many elderly have told him that the district needs an expanded school, and they are contacting out-of-state neighbors to cast an absentee ballot in favor of the project.
The vote will be held February 8th from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Pequot Lakes High School, and at Crosslake City Hall.
Little Falls Man Dies Clearing Roof Snow
An effort to clear snow from a roof has ended tragically in Little Falls.
The Morrison County Sheriff’s Office says a man from rural Little Falls fell through the roof of his pole shed Monday shortly after 6:30 p.m.
When deputies arrived, they found that 46-year old Verd Anez had died from apparent injuries suffered in the fall. The Ramsey County Medical Examiner has not yet issued an official cause of death.
Sheriff Michel Wetzel says this year’s heavy snowfall has caused at least one barn roof to collapse, and prompted many people to climb onto roofs to remove snow. Barns and pole sheds often have one or more fiberglass roof panels, instead of solid steal panels, to permit light to shine through.
When the roof is covered with snow, a person can step onto one of the weaker panels without knowing it. Sheriff Wetzel urges people to exercise extreme caution when removing snow from a roof, especially if the roof has light permeable panels.
February Looks to be Cold
The first part of February will be on the cold side, according to KLKS Meteorologist Tony Schumacher. He says temperatures for the 28 days may be colder than average with a warm-up expected by mid month, but cool at the end. Snowfall looks like it will be less than January, or about average for the month.
January in the Brainerd Lakes Area was about a degree below average. More snow fell than normal, and ranged from 10-18 inches.
Dayton Proposes New Jobs Through Bonding
Governor Mark Dayton is asking the legislature to approve a billion dollar bonding bill to create jobs now and stimulate economic growth throughout Minnesota.
Dayton proposes half the bonding in over 300 infrastructure projects. The other half would be spent on projects targeted by the Legislature.
The Governor estimates the projects would create up to 28,000 jobs.
The proposal is getting a cool reception in the Republican controlled legislature, where lawmakers are opposing the spending package, and instead want to cut corporate taxes to spur construction jobs.
Monday Night High School Scores
Fond Du Lac 86, Northland 58
Wadena-Deer Creek 67, Park Christian 55
Walker-Hackensack-Akeley 58, Pillager 54
Clearbrook-Gonvick 67, Laporte 20
McGregor 62, Carlton 42
Dahl Says Watch Your Car Keys
Cold weather is moving back in the area for the first part of the week. Crow Wing County Sheriff Todd Dahl tells KLKS News, that means some motorists will leave their vehicles running unattended. He says five minutes isn't going to mean the car is going to be that much warmer. And, it only takes a second for a criminal to break in and drive off.
On another note, Sheriff Dahl says there will a drill Tuesday in Pequot Lakes at Gloria Dei Lutheran Church, off High 371 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The tactical unit will be staging a mock hostage-taking. He says there will be a lot of activity, but no reason for alarm.
Tax Filing Season is Underway
W-2's and 1099's are required to be in the mail by today for the tax filing season.
If you haven't gotten them, you may want to give your employer and financial institutions a couple of days for them to arrive in the mail, according to IRS regional spokesperson Sue Hales.
Taxpayers have an extra weekend to file their 2010 tax returns and pay any tax due, because Emancipation Day in Washington D.C. falls on April 15th. Returns now must be postmarked no later than Monday, April 18th.
Nearly 75 percent of all taxpayers received a refund. Last year, the average refund was approximately $2,900.
Ban the Box To Aid Ex-Offenders Job Search
Several pieces of proposed state legislation this session are aimed at granting ex-offenders a true second chance at living successfully in the community.
According to the MN Second Chance Coalition, employment is a critical factor in reducing recidivism, so one proposed law coming this session known as "ban the box" will remove questions of criminal background from applications so that ex-offenders have a better opportunity to prove themselves in a job interview. The idea has the support of former Governor Al Quie.
Quie admits decades ago, he wouldn’t have dreamed of supporting the legislation. That changed 41 years ago when he started mentoring prisoners. He says having access to employment is critical for ex-offenders to rebuild their lives and their dignity.
Klobuchar Says Now Is The Time To Fix Social Security
Minnesota Senator Amy Klobuchar says the Social Security trust fund must be fixed this year. She tells KLKS News, this has to be accomplished without changes to existing seniors. She says this can happen by adjusting the amount the wealthiest Americans collect, and placing a tax on payrolls over $250 thousand.
The Congressional Budget Office says without changes, Social Security will be drained of its funds by 2037.