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Newsleader St. Joseph

Friday, March 22, 2013 Volume 24, Issue 12 Est. 1989

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Big Brother recognized for guidance by Cori Hilsgen news@thenewsleaders.com

Town Crier

Empty Bowls set March 24

The Empty Bowls Soup Feed Benefit and Silent Auction will be held from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday, March 24 at Calvary Community Church, 1200 Roosevelt Road, St Cloud. Empty Bowls is an internationally recognized program designed to draw attention to the problem of hunger in the United States and the world. For more information, visit www.thenewsleaders.com and click on Criers.

Give GRRL a High $5

Several branches in the Great River Regional Library system will feature local programming in March, funded by “High $5” contributions from library users. The High $5 March fundraising campaign began in 2005 to encourage library patrons to make donations to GRRL to help support library services. Donations stepped up when each branch was told to keep 40 percent of donated funds for local purposes. The remaining 60 percent goes to help fund library operations and collections that benefit the entire region. If all library cardholders stopped by in March and donated $5, it would have a huge impact. Individuals wishing to make a High $5 donation may stop by their closest GRRL branch library. The library also accepts donations online at griver.org on its “Support the Library” page, where patrons may indicate a branch location via an “Instructions/Comments” line.

Hope for Recovery workshop set March 30

The National Alliance on Mental Illness of Minnesota will hold a free, one-day education workshop that provides families and individuals with information on mental illnesses, practical coping strategies and hope for recovery. The workshop will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, March 30 at the Great River Public Library, 1300 W. St. Germain St., St. Cloud. Registration is requested. For more information or to register, call Nick at 320-253-6212.

Wildland firefighter training

A 40-hour online course to being trained as a wildland firefighter is available Monday, April 1 during a one-day field session at Camp Ripley. Upon completion, you will be qualified at the base level for wildland firefighting work anywhere in the United States. Visit www.csbsju.edu/Arboretum.htm for course instructions, tips and registration for the field session.

contributed photo

Bill Riner of Sartell recently received statewide recognition for his role of mentoring Skyler Figallo in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. The two have spent time together learning new hobbies such as fishing and other activities.

Sartell resident Bill Riner was recently recognized for his outstanding role as a mentor in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program. BBBS of Central Minnesota recognizes a “Big Brother” and “Big Sister” annually. Riner and Julie Hentges of Richmond were selected to receive the honor and to represent BBBS of Central Minnesota in the statewide competition. Both Riner and Hentges were chosen as the sole winners in their respective categories. Riner has been matched with his little brother, Skyler Figallo of St. Joseph, for five years. A friend of Riner’s referred him to the progam. “Skyler and I are certainly glad they did,” Riner said. Riner said besides the chance to make a difference in a young person’s life, he has had a whole lot of fun. “How many senior citizens get to enjoy navigating through Big Brother • page 2

Local leaders pleased with new pope by TaLeiza Calloway news@thenewsleaders.com

The world watched and waited as a new pope was selected. Local faith leaders in St. Joseph and beyond watched as well and are pleased with the choice.

The new pope, Jorge Mario Bergoglio (pronounced BerGOAL-io), chose Francis as his pontical name. He is the 266th pope of the Roman Catholic Church. The 76-year-old is also the first non-European pope to serve in more than 1,200 years and the first member of the

Jesuit order to lead the church. Father Jerome Tupa, OSB, is the pastor of the Church of St. Joseph. He said he is excited about the arrival of Pope Francis. “I think it’s a delightful choice for the universal church,” Tupa said. “He seems to be warm

and has some spontaneity to him, which is kind of different from the former pope.” Tupa said he was a bit surprised by the choice but views it as a great opportunity not only for the United States but for Argentina. In conversations Pope • page 7

Despite state loss, season was a winner by Mark Lauer news@thenewsleaders.com

When you're driving through St. Paul, it doesn't take very long to realize what takes center stage in Minnesota. It seems no matter which direction you look, especially if you're anywhere near the Xcel Energy Center, home of the Minnesota Wild, you are always reminded you are in the "State of Hockey." If St. Paul had an official seal, it would probably feature a pair of crossed hockey sticks positioned over a large, slowmoving Zamboni machine. (And if you don't know what a Zamboni is, you're in the wrong place.) Many kids in Minnesota grow up with dreams that someday they'll take the ice at

Xcel Energy Center, playing for their school in what many feel is the grandest spectacle of any high-school sport – the Minnesota State Boys High School Hockey Tournament. St. Cloud Apollo's hockey program originated in 1972. But for the kids who have worn the Eagles' red, white and blue sweaters, nearly all of those 40 seasons have ended with unfulfilled dreams – and no trip to St. Paul. Apollo's only appearance in the tournament happened in 1984. If you look up toward the rafters of the Municipal Athletic Complex, which is home ice for all three St. Cloud high schools (Apollo, St. Cloud Tech and St. Cloud Cathedral), you can see banners honoring the championship teams of the in-

contributed photo

Apollo’s Jordan Keller (left) and Brandon Bloch (right) battle a St. Thomas Academy player during the Eagles’ first round state tournament game at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on March 6. tercity rivals. During the 1970s and 80s many of those banners were won by Apollo teams. Eagles' Coach Pete Matan-

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ich used those banners to give this year's team something to aim for. Apollo • page 8

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People

St. Joseph Newsleader • www.thenewsleaders.com

Big Brother from front page

a straw maze, enjoy a haunted house, spend an afternoon at a water park getting splashed and very wet, help an eager young man work on woodworking projects which turn into gifts for his mom, dad and little brothers?” Riner asked. “Help a teenage boy refinish a rocker for an appreciative mom. Enjoy and share with him his pride of accomplishment. Watch him skillfully cut contributed photo On March 15, students at St. John’s Prep organized the third out puzzles for his little brothers annual Blood Drive with the American Red Cross. Students in- on a scroll saw. Guide his hands cluded (from left to right): Alivia Tacheny, junior, daughter of in the carving of a snake and creRose and Greg Tacheny, Cold Spring; Genevieve Faith, junior, ation of a bear puzzle for sale at daughter of Dru and Andrew Faith, St. Cloud; Gabrielle Mar- the ‘Magic Moments Ball.’ Skyler tone, junior, daughter of Lisa and Mark Martone, St. Joseph; and I think we were the ‘best in Zach Dehler, senior, son of Mary and Al Dehler, St. Joseph; the show.’” The two were matched in the and Ashley Nneji, junior, daughter of Monique and Chukwuma “Schooland Site-Based” proNneji, Nigeria. A total of 44 units were collected from students, gram and met once each week faculty/staff and friends of St. John’s Prep. This was a 42- perduring the school year. They cent increase from the 31 pints collected last year. played board games, made and Two St. Joseph students They are the following: flew paper airplanes in the gym were recently named to the fall Amanda Stanoch and Katie and flew kites outside in warmer semester dean’s list at Bemidji Pfannenstein. weather. During the school year, (Minn.) State University. they did not meet off-site. When the school year ended, however, Riner and Figallo wanted to continue with the program. The family of Glenn Hom- family and friends. Glenn was a They expanded to the “Commerding of St. Joseph, wishes very wonderful and loving man munity-Based” program where to extend our sincere heartfelt who touched many lives, and they met outside the school and thanks and appreciation for all for that we have been blessed. increased their fun activities. love and support shown to us, He will be greatly missed. Some of their activities inand especially Glenn during his cluded attending as many BBBS illness and passing. We have Sincerely, events as they could, spending been overwhelmed by all of the Brenda, Matthew, Jeremy time at the library, bike ridexpressions of kindness from and Tyler Hommerding ing, swimming, fishing, playing

Card of thanks

If any readers have tips concerning crimes, they should call the St. Joseph Police Department at 363-8250 or Tri-County Crime Stoppers at 255-1301 or access its tip site at www.tricountycrimestoppers.org. Crime Stoppers offers rewards up to $1,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for crimes. Feb. 27 12:47 p.m. Fire. College Avenue S. Boiling in building overheated causing noise and smoke. Fire department arrived on scene and found no fire. Turned off gas and advised home owner. March 1 4:44 p.m. Phone complaint. Person stated a person she works with was telling her who she could and couldn’t be friends with. Told her not to answer calls anymore or to block the calls. Also told her to tell her supervisor at work.

11:06 p.m. Loud-party complaint. Cedar Street E. Received a report of a loud party from a complainant. Just as officers arrived on the scene, dispatch advised they just received a 911 open-line call from inside the apartment. Dispatch was unable to get any information because it was too loud. Officers arrived and broke up the party. Issued 25 citations for underage consumption. Issued citations for violation of the social-host ordinance. March 2 4:58 p.m. Alcohol minor consumption. Cedar Street E. Breathalyzer results indicated a minor at a party had a .049 reading. Citation was issued for underage consumption. March 3 1:16 p.m. Medical. College Avenue N. Officer stopped at a business. Driver stated there was an Asian male in front of the store

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who was extremely intoxicated. The driver said a group of males was carrying the intoxicated male and at first driver thought he was dead. Officer arrived and found the group inside of the business. Male was unresponsive upon first contact, but later became responsive. Breathalyzer results indicated a .166 reading. Gold Cross arrived and evaluated the male who was then transported to St. Cloud Hospital. March 4 4:23 p.m. ATV complaint. Able Street E. and 6th Avenue SE. Unable to locate ATV or any tracks due to falling snow. 9:37 p.m. Welfare check. CR 75 and CR 133. Located female walking on CR 75 just east of Ridgewood Road on the north side of the roadway. Female stated she had just gotten off of work and was walking home. Officer offered to transport her home, but she refused despite it was snowing.

board games and card tricks, playing catch with balls, playing pool, bowling, working on lots and lots of woodworking projects, eating lunches at places such as “Mongos” and other activities. They went to the theater to see the movie called “Wreck it Ralph” and really enjoyed it. Riner said he would never have gone to that movie on his own. Riner and Figallo have also shopped together for Christmas gifts for Figallo’s family and also for items for Figallo. “Skyler is an excellent shopper,” Riner said. “He spends his money very well. He takes a long time to make comparisons and frequently does not make a purchase. He knows how much money he has available and decides how to allocate his funds.” Riner said Figallo is fun to watch when he shops. “He compares prices and assesses value; it’s not a fast process,” Riner said. “I just tag along and listen to him think aloud about his choices. I’ve told him several times I think he is a very good shopper.” Figallo, 15, is a student at St. John’s Preparatory School. His father, Andrew, works at Merrill Corp., and his mother, Shaana, recently passed the Minnesota Teacher license exam after graduating from St. Cloud State University in December. Figallo has two younger brothers – Rainer, 6, and Donovan, 4. Figallo started with the BBBS program when he was a student

March 5 1:53 p.m. Found property. College Avenue N. Set of Chevrolet keys and key found on a lanyard. Anonymous person dropped them off at the St. Joseph Police Department who then placed the keys in property. 2:37 p.m. Theft. Chapel Lane. Female reported her bicycle has been missing since mid-December. Faded blue rusty bike with black seat and basket. Bike had owner’s name on it when it was stolen. March 6 10:42 a.m. Car accident. Elm Street E. Accident on CR 133. Vehicle two pulled out in front of vehicle one causing vehicle one to hit vehicle two on the driver’s side. Accident report was filed. 4:25 p.m. Car accident. CR 75 E. and 4th Avenue N. Westbound at Northland Drive. Vehicle one was stopped at light, vehicle two did

Friday, March 22, 2013 in Sauk Rapids. A teacher, who had had a good experience with the program, suggested Figallo would like it, too. At about the same time, a class member of Figallo’s mother had also given a passionate, informational speech about the program. Since male volunteers were minimal, he was originally matched with a Big Sister. Figallo’s mother said she was a wonderful match, but as Figallo grew, his needs changed and the program matched him with a Big Brother. “We are forever thankful to BBBS for recognizing he needed a match that could be with him throughout the years and help mold him into a well-rounded, healthy, positive young adult,” Shaana said. “And they succeeded when they paired Skyler with Bill.” Figallo is active in plays and musicals and Riner says he always lands a major role. Currently Figallo is performing as the “Scarecrow” in the “Wizard of Oz” performance at the Paramount Theatre. The two also watch other plays and musicals at the Paramount. Figallo has played soccer, participates in track and cross country and enjoys attending German Camp in the summer. Riner, married for 48 years, has two sons and five grandchildren. A Minnesota resident for the past 10 years, he is retired from an engineering and management career in heavy manufacturing. Before joining the BBBS pronot stop for light and rear-ended vehicle one. No reported serious injury. Accident report was filed. 7:11 p.m. Disorderly. College Avenue S. Male admitted being outside and yelling on the phone. He was very defensive. Officer advised him to keep the yelling down and not to be doing it outside. Wife also stated everything was OK. March 7 12:38 p.m. Welfare check. Baker Street E. Mother who lives in Alaska was unable to reach her daughter since Sunday. Daughter recently separated from her husband. Officer went to address and daughter was OK, but she hadn’t been able to get a phone yet. Officer let her use phone to call her mother. 5:20 p.m. Harassment. Birch Street W. Man reported he was being harassed by his nephew because of an argument he was having with his sister.

Published each Friday by Von Meyer Publishing Inc. Publisher/Owner Janelle Von Pinnon Editor Dennis Dalman

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Friday, March 22, 2013 gram, Riner had experiences with his sons and grandchildren and says he does many of the same things with Figallo. Riner believes all youngsters need a good adult role model who interacts with them in a loving, nonjudgmental way. He said kids thrive on it and it’s essential for their healthy development. “The BBBS organization is a proven way of providing this vital component to many young people,” Riner said. “Being a part of this organization as a ‘Big’ is very rewarding. “We are just two guys, one young fellow and one not so young sharing time together. Something we would not have if it were not for the pairing brought about through the marvelous BBBS organization.” Figallo said Riner deserves the BBBS award. “He’s one of the smartest, funniest and nicest guys I know,” Figallo said, “and I am glad he’ll finally get recognized for it.” Figallo said Riner has taught him many things about a variety of subjects. He has taught him to understand math, how to be safe and have fun at the same time, how to play chess and other things. “Teaching me to play chess helped me learn I needed to plan ahead,” Figallo said, “anticipate what was coming next and to plan accordingly.” Figallo said Riner has helped him to see the world in a few different ways. Riner liked classical music as much as Figallo did, so they listen to that a lot. “I found it to be a mostly relaxing genre of music,” Figallo said. “It helped me slow down and think about things. Whenever I get upset or stressed out, I listen to classical music to remind me to calm down and think about things. Most of the time, it

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helps me realize what was wrong and how it could be fixed.” Figallo said Riner also taught him a few things about people and about the difference wearing a smile and being nice can make. Riner had shared a story about getting stuck at the airport and how the person waiting in line ahead of him had yelled at the woman behind the counter. When it was Riner’s turn at the counter, he told the woman she didn’t deserve what she had just received and that she had handled it very well. Riner ended up getting put in a first-class seat because he was nice and wore a smile. Figallo’s family is happy he has met Riner and made a good friend. They said they realize how important it is for any child to have someone he can trust and is comfortable enough with to share feelings. The family is glad for an authority figure like Riner, who can guide “Little

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Brothers” through listening, understanding and being together through difficult times and joyous times. Figallo’s younger brothers wish Riner could be their Big Brother, too. Riner was nominated for the award by the BBBS agency. He said it’s an “honor and a privilege to represent and promote the program,” and he would recommend the program to others. “You will most likely make a difference in a young person’s life and have a whole lot of fun in the process,” Riner said. “There is a very good chance you will get more than you give.” Figallo said he doesn’t really know anything about the other ‘Bigs’ in the BBBS program, but he believes Riner is the best. Whenever he needs someone to talk to, is bored and doesn’t know what to do, or is confused about math, Riner is there to help. Figallo said Riner listens,

offers ideas for him to use his time productively and helps him understand math. “Bill is the best ‘Big’ because no matter what I require to get the skills I need to succeed in life, Bill is always there,” Figallo said. Figallo would also recommend the BBBS program to others. “BBBS has a lot of events, fun things to do and gets us discounts at a lot of places, but the best thing is they gave me a best friend for life, a Big Brother,” Figallo said. This is the second year both the state Big Brother and Big Sister have been chosen from the central Minnesota agency. The Big Brother Big Sisters program began in 1969 and provides youth with one-to-one mentoring relationships. The Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Minnesota program currently has 190 children who are waiting for a mentor. To learn

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contributed photo

Bill Riner and Skyler Figallo were matched through the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Minnesota program. Riner was recently chosen for his outstanding role as a mentor. more about becoming a mentor, volunteering or donating, call 320-253-1616 or visit www.bbbscentralmn.org.

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St. Joseph Newsleader • www.thenewsleaders.com

Friday, March 22, 2013

St. John’s Prep presents ‘Wizard of Oz’ by TaLeiza Calloway news@thenewsleaders.com

As flying monkeys practiced Tuesday (March 18) at the Paramount Theatre in St. Cloud, Br. Paul-Vincent Niebauer, OSB, gave directions about a cue for an upcoming performance of “The Wizard of Oz.” St. John’s Preparatory School is producing the musical, which opens this weekend. Shows are slated for 7:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. Niebauer, of St. John’s Abbey, has directed about 50 shows but is directing this particular musical for the first time. He said the audience will be pleased. A 50-member cast will perform the Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Royal

Zoe Novak (Dorothy) and Skyler Figallo (Scarecrow), both of St. Joseph, are off to see the Wizard of Oz during a rehearsal. The students are part of St. John’s Preparatory School’s production of the musical that will open at the Paramount Theatre in St. Cloud. Shakespeare version of the classic. There will be many scenes of familiarity with a few tweaks to some lines. The role of Dorothy is played by St. Joseph resident Zoe Novak, a senior at St. John’s Prep. “It’s a fabulous show,” Niebauer said. “You’ll notice we stuck pretty close to the script and certainly the music, but contributed photos there will be some sassy surAlyssa Brown (Wicked Witch prises.” of the West), of Cold Spring, Dixie Boschee, an English demands the ruby slippers teacher at St. John’s Prep, is from Dorothy and Glinda dur- the producer of the show. The ing a rehearsal of “The Wiz- school has been producing muard of Oz.” sicals at the Paramount Theatre for many years and 2013 marks the 10th one. It started at the suggestion of a Prep student and grew from there. The school is the only school to produce musicals at the Paramount, she said. The first production was the musical “Jesus Christ Superstar.” “It’s a really big production,” Boschee said. “We’ve got quite a lot of students involved.” The musical includes a cast

of 50, 17 people working in the orchestra pit and an additional 15 backstage. Sarah Bresnahan, a resident of the St. Joseph area, choreographed the musical. She is a senior at St. John’s Prep. Special effects include flying witches, monkeys and a hot-air balloon. A real dog will play Toto. Magical set illusions will enhance the experience. The show time is under two hours and will offer something for everyone. Saturday’s performance is dedicated to Al Leighton of Leighton Broadcasting since he is the one who persuaded Niebauer to move shows to the Paramount years ago. Leighton died last spring but his vision has become a tradition. “It’s a delightful retelling of the story,” Niebauer said. “Even though it’s (considered) a ‘children’s’ story, it really isn’t. We’re all young at heart, I hope.” The Paramount Theatre is at 913 W. St. Germain St. in St. Cloud. Ticket information is available at paramountarts.org.

Friday, March 22, 2013

St. Joseph Newsleader • www.thenewsleaders.com

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Birdhouse event marks 20th year in city

photos by TaLeiza Calloway

Connor May, 5, of St. Joseph, puts together parts of a wren St. Joseph Rod and Gun Club member Ron Rennie helps Ilsa Shobe (center), 13, and St. Joseph house March 18 during the 20th annual birdhouse-building resident Ashley Thelen, 13, make a bluebird house March 18 during the 20th annual birdhouse- night in St. Joseph. building night in St. Joseph. by TaLeiza Calloway news@thenewsleaders.com

Five-year-old Connor May liked the sound an electric drill made as the bit twirled. It was hard at times for his parents to keep it from him during the 20th annual birdhouse night March 18. The boy was eager to finish the construction of his first wren house. Connor’s father, Stephen May of St. Joseph, said the event serves as a nice outing for children. This was their first time at the free event sponsored by the St. Joseph Rod and Gun Club and held at the American Legion in St. Joseph. Within the first hour of the event, more than 30 people showed up to make various

styles of wren, bluebird and wood duck houses out of wood. Traffic remained steady throughout the event despite an anticipated blizzard. “This is a good turnout,” Ken Hiemenz said. “If there’s no wood left when we’re done then it will be a super turnout.” Hiemenz, president of the St. Joseph Rod and Gun Club, said they rarely have any wood left over from the event. Attendees can make as many houses as they want, but there’s a catch. They must put each house up, club members said. Jared Scholz, 12, of St. Joseph, was already thinking about where the several birdhouses he made would go. Even though it was his first try at birdhouse building, he looked like a pro.

“It was fun,” Scholz said. “I just hope we can put them up.” Al Kalla, chairman of the event, said they can go up during this time of year but will last longer if they’re painted first. As is, they will last at least 10 years, he said. If painted, another five years of use is likely. The annual event is something the St. Joseph area has continued to embrace throughout the years, with many returning for the activity. The event usually results in production of

about 20 wood duck houses, 100 bluebird houses and 50 wren houses. “We started this because we wanted to do something for the community,” Kalla said. “Now this is our 20th year.” While this year marks 20, it was the first for 13-year-old Ashley Thelen. The St. Joseph resident came with her friend, Ilsa Shobe. The girls admitted it wasn’t too hard to make a bluebird house, and they thought it was fun. Shobe is a veteran of

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the event. “I came when I was real little,” Shobe said, “but I’m mostly here for my little brother.” The St. Joseph Rod and Gun Club donated all the wood used for the event. Birdhouses were cut in advance by retired carpenter and club members Kalla, Peter Giroux, Al Diedrich, Mike Westerhoff, Ron Rennie and Marvin Bierschbach. Kalla said all supplies used for the event were donated by Ace Hardware and Manion’s.

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Friday, March 22, 2013

Opinion Our View

Paperless option isTheworth exploration estimated cost to transition into paper-

saving mode by the City of St. Joseph is $2,500. That is about how much money the city would have to spend up front to eventually save on paper and printing costs if it decides to no longer print paper agendas for city-council meetings. While the city’s general-fund budget is about $2.4 million, and budget reductions are uppermost in mind, paying a cost to save money is still a savings. Exploring cost savings is always a good idea and despite the large price tag in these rough economic times, the paperless transition should be made in St. Joseph. City officials have discussed this option previously, but it hasn’t gone beyond the discussion level. Well, staff is researching the cost of iPads for elected officials to see if the cost is worth the savings in the long run. It is. Just do it. They also hope to upgrade the city’s email system so elected officials can have a city email address (for example name@cityofstjoseph.com). The idea of going paperless came up briefly at the March 7 city-council meeting. Before that, it was explored in September. Because agendas vary in size, an email option might not be the best way to go. City council member Steve Frank, who already has an iPad, asked if he could use his own iPad as an additional way to save money. He was told he could, but officials explained iPads would have to have the city’s software on it to access city documents during the meetings. St. Joseph City Administrator Judy Weyrens told council members previously Farmington has also issued iPads to city officials and has saved about $4,000 on paper per year. The way it works is the packet has to be online by a certain date and time so officials can retrieve the packets. In terms of staff time, the transition to an electronic method would also be easier on staff, Weyrens said. St. Joseph is not the only city to go this route or think about heading this way. Elected officials in Sauk Rapids went paperless a few years ago with officials accessing agendas via laptops during meetings. Some use iPads during meetings, but one Sauk Rapids official preferred to keep the paper agenda. While saving money is the goal of the proposal, the paperless route is an optional one. Actual costs for the transition are still being determined, but Weyrens said the cost of the devices outweighs the cost of paper in the long run. It’s time to move beyond discussion mode, take action and go paperless. From the cost savings in printing to a reduction in staff time used to print and sort agendas, going paperless is the best way to go. Elected officials are expected to vote on whether or not to adopt a paperless option at their first city council meeting in April.

Fairness and ethics

Newsleader staff members have the responsibility to report news fairly and accurately and are accountable to the public. Readers who feel we’ve fallen short of these standards are urged to call the Newsleader office at 363-7741. If matters cannot be resolved locally, readers are encouraged to take complaints to the Minnesota News Council, an independent agency designed to improve relationships between the public and the media and resolve conflicts. The council office may be reached at 612-341-9357.

Storytelling event was good reminder of need to engage I recently participated in a discussion on storytelling and getting to know your neighbors at the St. Cloud Library. It was so nice to interact with people I had seen in passing and, of course, meet new people in the area. I actually ran into a woman who remembered me interviewing her in 2007 when I was an intern for the St. Cloud Times. Talk about a good memory! There were about 30 people who participated in the gathering. The whole idea was to share your story and listen to those from as many people as you can. Before the discussion there was a panel whose members shared their stories and what brought them to central Minnesota. I was a panelist with Hao Nguyen, assistant city prosecutor for the city of St. Cloud. I remembered the name “Nguyen” from a newspaper article I read previously, but to hear his story up close was even better. He shared how his mother risked her life guiding her family out of Vietnam, protecting them for two years in a refugee camp and then bringing them to St. Cloud in 1987. He shared his experience with having to learn English and his mother’s dedication to maintaining his cultural identity by allowing him to speak only Vietnamese at home. Nguyen

TaLeiza Calloway Reporter told the audience he is one of several of his friends who speaks the language fluently while many lost that part of their culture. After we kicked off the discussion with our stories, we broke off into groups to talk more. A moderator supplied questions as prompts to get conversations going. Several people shared how they have lived in the area for years and interact with people they know because it’s familiar. Some said they don’t easily engage people they don’t know because of a fear and/or a lack of time to socialize. It can be a little uncomfortable for some to speak to someone whom they have not spoken to before. By the end of the evening, several attendees said they would try to be more engaging to their neighbors or even join a multicultural book club to expand their social circle. Those are just some of the examples of what some attendees took

away during the event. I’ve always liked people. It’s why I became a journalist, to share stories that wouldn’t otherwise be told unless I helped others share them. Journalists have to have the courage to walk up to complete strangers at a moment’s notice and convince them they can be trusted. It’s not an easy job but I love it. During the storytelling event, I observed attendees go from a little nervous to a little more at ease as they moved from table to table. Yes, it took about an hour for this transition but it was nice to see it. While that was just one event, it reminded me of what can come from simply saying “hello” to the local store clerk or asking the postal worker if her children are ready for summer. St. Joseph might be a smaller town than St. Cloud, but it’s because of that small-town friendliness neighbors get to know not only one another but their children’s children. I think that’s pretty cool, but it doesn’t have to stop there. I encourage residents who might know the families in the four or five houses down the street to go around the corner and introduce themselves to those families as well. They’re your neighbors too.

Writer ponders how American national character is built This past election was touted as a battle for the soul of America. It seems by now America’s soul has been battled over more often than an alcoholic at a tent revival. The way the two sides shaped up roughly, is one wishes to conserve a unique and precious tradition of freedom and individualism bequeathed us by the Founders of this nation. Hence the term “conservative,” from the verb, “to conserve.” The other wishes to free everybody from the constraints of poverty, inequality and above all from the past, regarding tradition as little more than outmoded superstition at best. Hence the term “liberal,” from the Latin for “free.” Conservatives see themselves as the natural inheritors of the Founding Fathers. Liberals are a bit more ambiguous, some looking to Europe for examples of the just society. Others see their plans as extending the freedoms and privileges the founders established for white males of property, to women, minorities and other previously disadvantaged groups. Please note these stereotypes are drawn very broadly, and if they don’t fit what you think of yourself and the other side, please bear with me for a moment. What I’d like to point out is, both sides manifest different aspects of the national character of America that have been here since our beginnings as a nation. That doesn’t mean one program isn’t wrong and disastrous – whichever you believe it to be; it means that for good or ill they both reflect something deeply in our history. There is such a thing as “national character.” Anyone who has lived abroad

Steve Brown Guest Writer for any length of time sees this. A European will tend to ascribe this to “blood,” but it obviously can’t explain anything about our nation of immigrants. We Americans have certain assumptions we share about how the world works, which are so much a part of our psyche we are mostly as unaware of them as a fish is of water. I first noticed this when I started out as a teacher of English as a second language. I had a class of Asian ladies from several countries who were studying English to enter an American university. At one point we had a discussion of national character, and what they observed about their own countries from the perspective of outside looking in. They invited me to try to look at my own country with a detached eye. I came up with an observation very off-the-cuff, but I don’t know as I’ve ever done better. I told them, deep down inside, Americans believe all problems have solutions, and every situation, no matter how bad, can be improved. I asked them what they thought of that. They all looked blankly at me, until one said, “That’s not true.” She was of course quite right. Some problems have no solutions and some situations cannot be improved, only lived with. As a nation we have achieved great things with boundless optimism and a belief that nothing is impossible. We settled and transformed a continent in

a historical blink of an eye. We created grand engineering marvels such as the Panama Canal, the Hoover Dam and the Interstate Highway system. We ended slavery – long regarded as a permanent and necessary institution of civilization. We improved the condition of laboring men and created the richest working class in the world. But we’ve also driven our country to within shouting distance of a ruinous bankruptcy attempting to solve problems that remain intractable, and disrupted society almost to the point of collapse trying to create a utopia on earth. The Founding Fathers held views that were both utopian, and highly pragmatic. They knew they were creating a new order in the world – but they carefully studied contemporary and historical examples of governments and alliances to learn how they worked, and why they failed. The utopian impulse in our character is one source of the greatness of our country. But untempered by the pragmatism of the Founders, my yet be our ruin. Browne is an award-winning reporter and columnist who entered journalism by accident while living and working in Eastern Europe from 1991 to 2004. He is the author of two books for English students: “Word Pictures: English as it is REALLY Used,” published in Belgrade, Yugoslavia and Novosibirsk, Russia, and “English Linguistic Humor: Puns, Play on Words, Spoonerisms, and Shaggy Dog Stories.” In 1997 he was elected an honorary member of the Yugoslav Movement for the Protection of Human Rights. He is currently living in his native Midwest, which he considers “the most interesting foreign country I have ever lived in.”

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Friday, March 22, 2013

Community Calendar

Friday, March 22 “Travel Talkin’: Israel and Jordan.” Take a fascinating trip to the Holy City of Jerusalem, see views from Mount of Olives, take a walk through the garden of Gethsemane, then to the Sea of Galilee, River Jordan and finally the city of Bethlehem, 10-11 a.m., Whitney Senior Center, 1527 Northway Drive, St. Cloud. 320255-7245 St. Joseph Farmers’ Market, 3-6 p.m., Resurrection Lutheran Church, Fellowship Hall, 610 North County Road 2, St. Joseph. www. stjosephfarmersmarket.com. Fish fry, 4-8 p.m., All Saints Academy, 32 W. Minnesota St. and American Legion, 101 W. Minnesota St. Take-out at Parish House, 12 W. Minnesota St. Matching grant from Catholic United Financial.

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Artist Sarah Drake talk, 5-6 p.m., Al Ringsmuth Public Library, Waite Park. Her artwork themed around women and water will be on display in honor of International Women’s Day (March 8) and World Water Day (March 22). Drake will work with up to 20 participants on the creation of a piece of group art about the topic of water. This program is for adults, teens, and children 12 and older. 320-253-9359. “The Wizard of Oz,” 7:30 p.m. Paramount Theatre, St. Cloud. 320259-5463 or www.paramountarts.org. Saturday, March 23 Horticulture Education Day, 8 a.m.-3:45 p.m., St. John’s University, Collegeville. 320-255-6169. Aglow Gathering, 9:30 a.m., Michael’s Restaurant, 510 Hwy. 10, St.

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Cloud. RSVP Vera 320-253-5351 by March 20. “The Wizard of Oz,” 7:30 p.m. Paramount Theatre, St. Cloud. 320259-5463 or www.paramountarts.org.

Sunday, March 24 Empty Bowls soup feed benefit and silent auction, sponsored by Place of Hope, noon to 4 p.m., Calvary Community Church, 1200 Roosevelt Road, St. Cloud. “The Wizard of Oz,” 2 p.m., Paramount Theatre, St. Cloud. 320259-5463 or www.paramountarts.org. Thursday, March 28 Coffee and Conversation, a senior discussion group, 9 a.m., Country Manor, Sartell.

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Pope from front page with some parishioners, he said they too share his excitement. “At the parish here, we have prayed for him, and we look forward to continuing to work as a community of prayer and of service,” Tupa said While the retirement of Pope Benedict XVI was a shock, Tupa says he gives him credit for the courage to do so. Father Blane Wasnie, OSB, is pastor of the Church of St. Benedict in Avon. He, too, watched the selection of the new pope with anticipation and commends the former pope’s courage to end his reign. “I’m very thrilled we have a pastoral leader of the entire church,” Wasnie said. “Pope Francis has a lot of experience with the church of the poor.

We can be more conscious of the poor and learn to live the gospel more simply and more really. He can teach us how to live more simply.” Wasnie said there is a sense of relief with new leadership in place but says he respects Pope Benedict XVI for standing up and telling the world why he needed to retire. He said it sets a great precedent for those in ministry. Already Pope Francis is the subject of a lot of historical “firsts,” and Wasnie hopes other “firsts” will follow. “My hope is he will decentralize and respect the autonomy of the conferences of bishops, work together with them on a more equal basis,” Wasnie said. “The Second Vatican Council encourages this. This last 30 years we’ve gotten away from that. That would be a great gift to the church.”

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BEAUTY

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Mary Kay Cosmetics Joyce Barnes St. Joseph 320-251-8989

Barbara G. Backes, M.S., LPC, P.A. Marriage, Family & Individual St. Cloud 320-420-6195

CHIROPRACTOR

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Dr. Jerry Wetterling 103 N. College Ave. St. Joseph 320-363-4573

CHURCHES Gateway Church - St. Joseph

Michael F. Contardo D.D.S. 26 2nd Ave. NW St. Joseph 320-363-4468 Drs. Styles, Cotton & Milbert 1514 E. Minnesota St., Box 607 St. Joseph 320-363-7729

Worship: 10 a.m. Sunday, 7 p.m. Wednesday, 6 p.m. Saturday

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Von Meyer Publishing 32 1st Ave. NW St. Joseph 320-363-7741

Resurrection Lutheran, ELCA Sunday Worship 8:30 & 11 a.m. WoW! (Worship on Wednesday) 6:30 p.m.

EYECARE

610 N. CR 2 St. Joseph Russell Eyecare & Associates 320-363-4232 www.rlcstjo.org 15 E. Minnesota St., Ste. 107 St. Joseph 320-433-4326 St. Joseph Catholic Church Masses: Tuesday-Friday 8 a.m. Saturday 5 p.m. Sunday 8 and 10 a.m.

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PLUMBING & HEATING Metro Plumbing & Heating 545 8th Ave. NE St. Joseph 320-363-7761

St. Joseph Newsleader • www.thenewsleaders.com

8

Apollo from front page "I told them to look up at those banners and imagine what it would be like to have their own up there," Matanich said. "It would be something they could tell their own kids about, or talk about at class reunions someday." Matanich, a 1997 graduate of Apollo, played on an Eagles squad that posted a 20-3 record during his senior season and made a bid at qualifying for state. But that team fell short, losing to a strong Moorhead team in the sectionals. The school record for wins in one season was set in its first season in the Central Lakes Conference, 1977-78, when Apollo put together a 21-3 season and a share of the conference title with Elk River. That season also ended in defeat in the section semifinals, 7-3 at the hands of Duluth East. This year, though, something different happened. Apollo, featuring only four seniors on its roster, put together its best season since 2001-02, finishing the regular season with a record of 15-10 before winning three straight playoff games to win the Section 6A title and earning the right to appear on the big stage in St. Paul. Their first-round opponent at the state tourney would be two-time defending Class A champion St. Thomas Academy. Most everyone knows what happened next. St. Thomas Academy, which would eventually win its third consecutive Class A state title, put on a display for the fans at Xcel Energy Center in the opening-round game, shutting out Apollo, 12-0. The game was decided early, with the Cadets opening a 4-0 lead after the first period and then opening the gap to 9-0 after two periods. Incredibly, St. Thomas outshot Apollo 50-3 in the game which began with a contingent of STA fans chanting "This one's over" shortly after the opening faceoff. "I felt bad for the kids, but they never gave up," Matanich said. "They kept playing hard

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and gave it all they had the whole game. A lot of times when a game gets lopsided it's easy for the team that's losing to get frustrated. But they never got cheap, they played with class and afterward I told them they could still hold their heads high." According to Matanich, who completed his fourth year as Apollo head coach, even a onesided defeat at a state tournament can prove beneficial, although not always right away. "An experience like that kind of molds you for what comes next," he said. It was up to Apollo to shake off the first-round drubbing and regroup for their consolation bracket game against Rochester Lourdes. In this game the Eagles played much better, holding a one-goal lead a couple of times. But Lourdes scored two goals late in the third period to take a 6-4 victory, ending Apollo's season. According to their coach, it wasn't that hard for the Eagles to regroup for Lourdes after the messy opening-round loss to St. Thomas Academy. "We just tried to remind them of why they were here (at the tournament), and that they were representing our school," Matanich noted. The 2012-13 season was marked by some early wins followed by inconsistent play on other occasions. It wasn't until mid-January when the Eagles began to come together as a complete team and started playing more consistent, winning hockey. The improvement showed in wins over teams like Fergus Falls and Alexandria, along with some solid efforts in a couple of one-goal losses to always-tough Brainerd. "The team really jelled together about that time," Matanich said. "You could just see they had a different demeanor, they felt like they could compete with anybody." The Eagles roster had just four seniors: defensemen Brandon Bloch and Jordan Keller, and forwards Erik Jarosch and Jared Christen. The four of them brought different qualities to the table for Apollo. Christen tended to "lead by example" according to Matanich, and also finished the season as

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Friday, March 22, 2013

contributed photo

The St. Cloud Apollo boys hockey team poses for a team photo after winning the Section 6A title on Feb. 28 at the Municipal Athletic Complex. The win put the Eagles into the state high school hockey tournament for the first time in 29 years. the team's leading scorer with 45 goals (a school record) and 39 assists. Bloch, a St. Joseph resident, was one of the team's top defensemen and also a more vocal leader, as was Jarosch from his forward po-

sition. Keller displayed exceptional skills as a defenseman while also being a motivator for his teammates. Apollo's top goaltender this season was a freshman, Nick Althaus, who posted an 18-9-0

record as a ninth-grader, and had a save percentage of .871. The 2012-13 season marked the first winning year for Apollo since 2001-02 when the Eagles finished with a record of 19-7-0.


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