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Western Itasca Review 75 Cents Deer River, Minnesota, 56636 Volume 110, Number 24 Thursday, December 31, 2009 Inside This Issue. . . Police Report Page 2 Cohasset Council Meeting Page 3 Looking Back Page 4 Deaths in 2009 Page 5 The Bible Says Page 17 2009 Photos In Review Page 20 Minnesota Discovery Center history research library not to be opened On Dec. 14, the Iron Range Resources (IRR) Board voted to give the Minnesota Discovery Center in Chisholm, formerly known as Ironworld, an additional amount of $200,000 to be able to reopen the history research library with a skeleton crew of five employees. By Dec. 17, the board’s resolution to do that was overturned by IRR Commissioner Sandy Layman, much to the disappointment of Rep. Tom Rukavina, who is a member of the IRR board. The Minnesota Discovery Center will still get the $250,000 to pay outstanding claims, secure the center while it is closed, and pay for an exam of its financial records. The IRR owns the Minnesota Discovery Center’s buildings and many of the collections. It was closed on Nov. 20 because of a financial deficit. March of 2010 is currently the date set for a decision on the future of the Minnesota Discovery Center, after a review of the center’s finances. A press release issued by the IRR commissioners office on Dec. 22 in regard to the Minnesota Discovery Center stated, “We understand the board’s concern in seeking a reopening of the Research Center, and pending the outcome of the review of Ironworld Development Corporation's financial data, Iron Range Resources will work with the non-profit to determine whether a viable plan can be developed to reopen all or part of the Minnesota Discovery Center to the public. We regret any inconvenience experienced by the research library’s patrons during closure of the facility and will do our best to expedite a definitive operational decision.” Bigfork City employee, Chris Manske, is cleaning the sidewalk on the Bigfork River bridge after the Christmas 2009 major snowfall. Photo by Don Basista. 2009 • • • Year in Review Compiled by Louise H. McGregor, staff writer January—The Deer River City Council is relieved to hear that the city’s December 2008 Local Government Aid payment will not be cut. The Cohasset City Council reappoints Cohasset Fire Chief Davin Tinquist. Jena Marie Doyle pleads guilty to the Aiding and Abetting Furnishing Alcohol to a minor charges that arose from an accident that resulted in death to one individual with several other people injured. The Deer River Fire Department have been busy as one of the first responders to accidents and have given the Jaws of Life a workout. Deer River City Councilman Mike DeWittt is given a festive send-off at his last council meeting after 20 years by his wife, family and the Deer River Council. Emma Johnson of Talmoon graduates Magna Cum Laude from North Dakota State University in Fargo, ND. Dominic Justin Blain Hill of Grand Rapids, born at the Deer River HealthCare Center hospital, is the city’s New Year’s baby. Independent School District 318 board members hear about ankle-deep mud and water in the Grand Rapids High School Gym at their first meeting of the year. The communities of Ball Club, Inger, Marcell and Squaw Lake hold their free Children First! New Year’s celebrations. Northland Foundation awards 52 grants totaling $267,202 which included $10,000 to the Community Cafe Foundation and $1,000 to Independent School District 317. Glen Heitland, the new owner of the Hoot N Holler in Alvwood, organizes the third annual Fun Run for 2009. Recently elected members of the Ball Club Local Indian Council are Milt Gotchie, Cindy Wilson, Bernadette Carnoski, Candace Gotchie, Phyllis Gotchie, Mary Bebeau and Robert Gotchie. The first spotlight on teachers of excellence at the Bug-O-NayGe-Shig School is done on Jay Johnson. Terrell Lee Wilson of Ball Club dies after being stabbed. Evelyn (Evy) Brand of Bigfork goes to Lambeau Field as one of the possible 10 candidates to be selected for the 2008 Green Bay Packers Fan Hall of Fame. The Deer River Chamber of Commerce Winter Fest featured a good number of fun activities for adults and youngsters. Organization for the coming year was the theme of the Independent School District 317 board meeting. The 2009 White Oak Sled Dog Classic had 70 teams complete the courses in the four different divisions of sled dog competitions. Jamie Nelson of Togo took part in this year’s event and the youngest musher was Malinda Tjetta who was 11. Mike Kane, owner of Greater Insurance Service, has been awarded a certified insurance counselor designation. Budget shortfall overshadow’s the Minnesota state legislative session. Deer River High School nordic skier Mindy Drotts competes at the Giants Ridge Invite. Darrek Jerome Porter, 17, of Deer River made his first Itasca County Juvenile Court appearance on the charges of two counts of Murder in the Second Degree and three counts of Assault in the Second Degree in the death of Terrell Lee Wilson, 17, of Ball Club. The Itasca County Commissioners consider amending action for the sale of lands to Essar Steel Minnesota. The Cohasset City Council gets organized for the coming year. The Effie City Council discusses the need for one additional council member and a city clerk. The Deer River City Council swears in elected officials and hears input from area residents Garry Fritz and Robert Mattfield. Congressional legislation is converting television broadcasting from analog to digital format in February and Arvig Communication Systems publishes resource information for the public. Taxes, jobs, education and budget cuts take center stage in the State of the State address given by Minnesota State Governor Tim Pawlenty. Roger Logdahl becomes the new mayor of Bigfork and he and councilman Robert Zimmer are sworn into office during the first Bigfork City Council meeting of the year. Pastor John Hanson is welcomed to the Lutheran churches of Jesse Lake and Suomi. Gemma Miltich of Cohasset and Katherine Struss of Northome are on the University of Minnesota’s Dean’s list for the fall semester of 2008. Daniel Pifher of Bigfork was on the North Dakota State University dean’s fall 2008 list. Students at Bigfork School form a Green Team to be more active in recycling efforts. The Itasca County Park and Recreation Commission meet in Deer River for their annual yearly meeting in this city. They hear about the status of the 70-mile snowmobile trail and learn more about the traps that can cause problems from a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources conservation officer. Members of the Deer River Operation Minnesota Nice attend a unit meeting facilitated by Denise Jorgensen who was the originator of this program in 2004 and currently is the president and packing coordinator. Lake Country Power’s Operation RoundUp® Trust Board approved $35,001 in contributions to local community programs. The second annual Minnesota FIRST Lego League Regional Tournament was held at Eagleview in Squaw Lake. This regional meet qualified four teams for advancement into the state tournament. A Minnesota Department of Public Safety coordinated statewide DWI enforcement effort in December of 2008 resulted in 2,655 arrests. Itasca County farmers upset about letter from the county assessor’s office on proposed changes to the taxation of agricultural properties with what they consider a thinly veiled threat about inaccuracies. Independent School District (ISD) 317 Superintendent Matt Grose held informational meeting in three locations. Students and staff in the ISD 317 schools gear up for exercise in the Warrior Walk to Wellness and the Just Move it program. Two Deer River teachers, Sigri Dorholt and Karen Teff, are candidates for Minnesota Teacher of the Year. Kelly Barrett of Talmoon writes a letter to the editor praising the North Elementary School dynamics as there gets to be more talk about closing the school. BriAnn Hoffman writes about a quick visit by SPC Luke Hoffman, whose schedule has kept him from writing on his experiences while based in Iraq. Robert (Bob) Olson of Deer River provides an update to Bigfoot believers on the local happenings. Independent School District 318 board approve changing the wording (from video to digital) in the bus and building recording policy as they now have eight school busses equipped with digital recorders. Bug-ONay-Ge-Shig School Spotlight on Teacher of Excellence features Ellen Adams. Bigfork High School adds a new carpentry elective to its courses with a grant from the Applied Learning Initiative. Teri Haig, owner of The Wedding Parlour in Grand Rapids, was named to the National Bridal Advisory Council. Students in the college news are Neil Wayne Anderson of Cohasset who graduated from North Dakota State University and Chelsi Plate of Deer River who was named to the Honorable Mention List at Crown College in St. Bonifacius. A five-year initiative planned to bring out-sourced IT jobs to northeastern Minnesota ended last summer without fulfilling its promise, but it is said that other programs are keeping the umbrella concept, True North, alive. The third annual Outpost Bar & Grill sponsored Bushwacker Poker Run fundraiser drew about 35 riders for the 100-mile run. Jeffery R. Swanson of Blackduck found guilty of major wetlands violations in Itasca County. Thrivent Financial and Lutheran congregations raise $814,000 for Minnesota FoodShare during a special Thanksgiving appeal. FEBRUARY—Bigfork’s new mayor, Roger Logdahl, was welcomed with a Meet the Mayor event at the Huskie Cafe. Anthony Fini of Grand Rapids was sentenced to 78 months in prison for the felony charge of Vehicular Homicide and the sentence was stayed for 10 years with 10 years of probation. Itasca County Commissioners approve reimbursing North Homes, Inc. for the purchases of a camera, monitor and hard drive unit for the security system at the Itaskin Juvenile Center. The Deer River City Council hears news about the implementation of the new 800 mgz radio system. The Cohasset City Council approves the purchase of a new fire truck. The Deer River Fire Department take part in the 8th Annual Winter Training Exercise hosted by the Cass County Sheriff’s Office held on Cass Lake. The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources make the formal announcement that the 2008 deer harvest was 19 percent less that the 2007 one. Early childhood education supporters from Itasca County testify before the Minnesota State Senate about the Invest Early educational initiative. Ainsworth permanently closed it’s two remaining OSB plants in Minnesota. Kyle Fuller of Grand Rapids placed on five years probation for the charge of Aiding and Abetting Furnishing Alcohol to a minor. An article explores how schools in the area han YEAR IN REVIEW/To Page 6

WIR Week 24, 2009

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