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Presorted Standard U.S. Postage Paid St. Joseph Newsleader St. Joseph, MN 56374 Permit No. 21 ECRWSS Postal Customer

Newsleader St. Joseph

Friday, May 9, 2014 Volume 25, Issue 19 Est. 1989

Town Crier

Summer farmers’ market opens today, Friday, May 9

The St. Joseph Farmers’ Market summer market opens today from 3-6:30 p.m. and will run every Friday into October. The market is located north of St. Joseph on C.R. 2 next to the Wobegon Trail Center (near Resurrection Lutheran Church). All are welcome – come on out, rain or shine, and purchase locally grown produce and more. Follow the market at stjosephfarmersmarket to stay informed.

Citywide garage sale set next weekend

The St. Joseph City Wide Garage Sale, sponsored by the St. Joseph Jaycees, will be held Friday and Saturday, May 16-17. Maps are available at Sentry Bank and all gas stations in St. Joseph.

Stamp Out Hunger food drive set May 10

On May 10, postal carriers across the country will collect food for families in need. It’s easy to help. Collect and bag non-perishable food items. Place items by your mailbox for letter carriers to deliver to a local food bank or pantry.

Postal Patron

Greenhouse tip: Don’t love plants to death by Dennis Dalman

It’s OK to love your plants; just don’t love them to death. That’s a good bit of advice from Arno Shermock, owner of Thomsens Greenhouse and Garden Center near St. Joseph. Loving a plant to death means giving it more care than it really needs, such as overwatering and overfertilizing. “It’s important to find a balance between too much and not enough,” Shermock said. One way to do that is to read and heed directions on fertilizer products and water only when the top half inch or so of the soil is dry. Killing plants with love can happen to green plants, flowers and even trees and shrubs, Shermock noted. There are many good fertilizers available, but at Thomsens, they have had good luck Plants • page 3

photo by Dennis Dalman

After a long, cold winter, it’s time to plant. JoAnn Fleischhacker, an Albany resident, tends to a small field of daisies at Thomsens Greenhouse and Garden Center near St. Joseph.

A historical perspective from 25 years ago

Fishing opener creates traffic safety concerns

The fishing opener weekend of May 10-11 will be a busy traffic period, especially in northern Minnesota. According to Regional Public Information Officer Sgt. Jesse Grabow, “Some of the main concerns are drivers who are not paying attention, following too closely and speeding, especially around the lakes areas. Drivers are strongly encouraged to buckle up, take your time and pay strict attention to your driving.” Drivers are also asked to keep an eye on their following distance and stay back far enough to prevent a crash with the vehicle ahead. For more information, visit and click on Criers.

Help prepare community gardens for planting

The Central Minnesota Sustainability Project is opening their Community Gardens on Saturday, May 10 from 10 a.m.-2 p.m., and as a part of that they are organizing a work day where volunteers will wheelbarrow compost to all of the plots in their garden. The work can be done earlier in the day, from 8-10 a.m., if that works better. Contact Florence Orionzi, gardens education and volunteer coordinator, at 320-356-0369 or


Lee’s Ace Hardware

Al and Virginia Pfannenstein, owners of the St. Joseph Meat Market, are running “business as usual” in spite of the fire setback. This metal structure is the only front part of the building yet standing after the March 20, 1989 fire at the St. Joseph Meat Market slaughterhouse. The actual slaughter room in the back of the building was salvaged and will be incorporated into the new slaughterhouse building. April 28, 1989

Meat Market pushes forward in spite of fire setback by Janelle Von Pinnon

The remodeling of the St. Joseph Meat Market slaughterhouse was finished Friday. All day Saturday, the boys had cleaned up the construction dust and debris for the federal inspection scheduled on Monday morning. Then fire struck at 7:15 a.m.

Sunday, March 19 (Palm Sunday) gutting the entire front of the building and leaving only the cement block walls of the back slaughter room and a few pieces of charred equipment. “It was a ‘let-down feeling,’” said Al Pfannenstein, co-owner with his wife Virginia of the St. Joseph Meat Market. “I couldn’t believe it, because everything

was supposed to be new and redone. And we’d reroofed that building last fall because of hail damage last spring. “It was a real sickening feeling going into that new place and seeing it all black and burned. It’s been determined a total loss. “But at the same time,” Al continued, “we were happy no one was hurt, killed or injured during the fire, or while the firefighters were putting it out.” Mutual aid response brought firefighters from five departments including Sartell, Rockville, St. Cloud Township and Waite Park, as well as St. Joseph. “The St. Joseph Fire Department was here until the next morning – nearly 24 hours after the fire began,” Al said. “They had an aerial ladder shooting water into the back room,” he continued. “The water splashing back into the room salvaged the slaughter room, but may have prevented them from saving more of the front of the building, which housed large cutting and storage areas, a large freezer, an office and a sausage spice area.” Construction is already under way for the new fireproof building, which will be located on the same land the previous building occupied. Completion date is set for Aug. 1, but the Pfannensteins are optimistic it may be finished

earlier. “The new building will be arranged differently than the one that burned, but we’ll be using it for the same purposes,” Al said. “Before, we kept pushing back toward the alley adding new rooms and shifting operations from one room to the next as we needed to expand. Now, it will be set up in a more orderly fashion with appropriate positions for equipment.” During the lag period until the new building is completed, the meat market has discontinued doing any custom work, but continues to slaughter whatever is needed for retail selling. “We’ve been slaughtering at Plantenberg’s Market in Richmond,” Al said. “They offered us the place to use until we’re ready to go into our own. We’ve been referring custom work to them. Other than that, business has been going on as good as always.” Al said he hasn’t had to lay off anyone of his 15 employees. His part-time help have been scrubbing equipment to salvage what they can; some stainless has been saved. “I feel fortunate to have the community we do,” Al said. “A lot of people were really concerned. We had full support from the city council. Young Perspective • page 2

St. Joseph Newsleader •

2 Friday, May 9 Blood drive, 8 a.m.-2 p.m., American Red Cross, 1301 W. St. Germain St., St. Cloud. 1-800-733-2767. Brat sale, sponsored by St. Joseph Lions, 9:30 a.m.-5 p.m., grilled brats and hotdogs, St. Joseph Meat Market, 26 1st Ave. NW. Art Opening, 6-8 p.m., paintings and jewelry by Lou Tollefson on display through June, The Change Hair Salon, 2385 Troop Dr., #204, Sartell, 320-764-3909. Saturday, May 10 Stamp Out Hunger, letter carriers will be collecting food for families in need. Collect and bag non-perishable food items and place by your mailbox for your letter carrier to deliver to a local food bank or pantry. Annual spring plant sale, 8:30 a.m.-noon, St. John’s Outdoor University, new science center, St. Johns

Community Calendar

University. 320-363-3163. Brat sale, sponsored by St. Joseph Lions, 9:30 a.m.-4 p.m., grilled brats and hotdogs, St. Joseph Meat Market, 26 1st Ave. NW. Spaghetti dinner, sponsored by St. Joseph Boy Scout Troop 84, 4:30-7:30 p.m., American Legion, 101 W. Minnesota St., St. Joseph. Monday, May 12 Blood drive, noon-6 p.m., American Red Cross, 1301 W. St. Germain St., St. Cloud. 1-800-733-2767. Writers Group, 6:30-8 p.m., group for adult writers, Al Ringsmuth Public Library, 253 5th Ave., Waite Park. March theme is “The Truth.” New members welcome, 320-253-9359, Spring Bands’ Concert, 7:30 p.m., Sartell High School. Tuesday, May 13 Blood drive, 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Amer-

ican Red Cross, 1301 W. St. Germain St., St. Cloud. 1-800-733-2767. Toddler Time, 10:30-11 a.m., toddlers ages 18 months to 3 years, stories, Al Ringsmuth Public Library, 253 5th Ave., Waite Park. Stories, songs and fingerplays. Advanced registration required. 320-253-9359, Basic computer and internet help, 11 a.m.-noon, for adults, Al Ringsmuth Public Library, 253 5th Ave., Waite Park. Call to register for 30-minute session. 320-253-9359, eReader/tablet help, 11 a.m.1 p.m., Al Ringsmuth Public Library, 253 5th Ave., Waite Park. Call to register for 30-minute session.320-253-9359 Sartell Chamber of Commerce, 11:45 a.m., City Hall. 320-253-2171. 55+ Driver Improvement program (four-hour refresher course), 5-9 p.m., Apollo High School, 100 44th Ave. N., St. Cloud. 1-888-2341294. Holistic Moms Network, 7-8:30 p.m., Good Earth Co-op, St. Cloud. 320-252-2489.

Wednesday, May 14 St. Joseph Area Chamber of Commerce, 11:30 a.m., St. Joseph Community Fire Hall, 401 7th St. S.

If any readers have tips concerning crimes, they should call the St. Joseph Police Department at 320363-8250 or Tri-County Crime Stoppers at 320-255-1301 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.

have him speak with suspect about the situation. She stated at this time no, and was advised to contact police if texts persist and if he threatens harm. She was advised of civil-action possibilities.

April 14 11:49 a.m. Traffic stop. Ash Street W./First Avenue NW. Officer observed a male who appeared to be texting or looking through his phone. Driver also did not use turn signal. When stopped, officer could smell marijuana and found drug paraphernalia. Driver was cited for paraphernalia and warned for turn signal and texting. 12:35 p.m. Theft. Eagle Ridge Court. Complainant stated sometime Saturday night someone took his wallet and a 12-pack of Mountain Dew out of his unlocked van in in the driveway. There was only credit cards in the wallet which he had cancelled. None of the cards were used. Value $10. April 17 3:52 p.m. Verbal. Baker Street E. Received a call of a verbal. Upon officers arrival, it was found the argument was over a phone. Female #1 claimed female #2 stole her phone. Female #2 agreed to let officers look in her apartment and her car. Nothing found. 9:54 p.m. Harassment. Minnesota Street E. Complainant called officer and stated an old friend continues to text her after she has asked him to stop. When she tells him to stop, he continues more frequently. He has been sending her two to three messages a day since April 14. Officer asked if she would like to meet or

Thursday, May 15 Coffee and Conversation, a senior discussion group, 9 a.m., Country Manor, Sartell. Blood drive, noon-6 p.m., American Red Cross, 1301 W. St. Germain St., St. Cloud. 1-800-733-2767. Pillow cleaning/perennial plant sale, sponsored by St. Joseph Y2K Lions, 5-7 p.m., feather pillows and comforters cleaned and put in new ticking, crushed foam and polyester pillows sterilized and recovered, cleaned while you wait, St. Joseph Community Fire Hall, 401 7th St. S. 320-363-8825. Evening book club, 6:30-7:30 p.m., for adults, Al Ringsmuth Public Library, 253 5th Ave., Waite Park, May book selection is “The Aviator’s Wife” by Melanie Benjamin. New members welcome. 320-253-9359, St. Joseph City Council, 7 p.m.,


April 19 6:20 p.m. ATV accident. 270th Street. Stearns County deputies arrived on scene and were informed that a 1-year-old child was run over by a 90cc Polaris Predator four-wheeler operated by his brother. Victim was transported to St. Cloud Hospital by Gold Cross Ambulance and was later released with minor injuries. St. Joseph Fire and Rescue also assisted at the scene of the crash. 10:15 p.m. Property-damage accident. CR 133. Officer observed a vehicle parked on the shoulder of the roadway with its four-way flashers on. Stopped and spoke with driver who stated he struck a deer as he was traveling on CR 133. Minor damage to vehicle. No injuries. Dispatched deer. April 20 2:08 a.m. DWI. Second Avenue NW/Minnesota Street W. Officer observed and locked squad radar on vehicle traveling 70 mph in a 45-mph

Perspective from front page and old said, ‘When you get to scrubbing, give us a call. We’ll come and help. We’re not kidding about calling us either.’ “Everyone feels good we’re rebuilding. They’ve been offering support and we’ve had many, many offers to help clean

Friday, May 9, 2014 City Hall. 320-363-7201. Spring band concert, fifth- and sixth-graders, 7 p.m., Sartell Middle School north gymnasium. Spring band concert, seventhand eighth-graders, 8 p.m., Sartell Middle School north gymnasium. Friday, May 16 Pillow cleaning/perennial plant sale, sponsored by St. Joseph Y2K Lions, 7 a.m.-3 p.m., feather pillows and comforters cleaned and put in new ticking, crushed foam and polyester pillows sterilized and recovered, cleaned while you wait, St. Joseph Community Fire Hall, 401 7th St. S. 320-363-8825. Blood drive, 8 a.m.-2 p.m., American Red Cross, 1301 W. St. Germain St., St. Cloud. 1-800-733-2767. Singles Dance, sponsored by St. Cloud Singles Club, 8:30 p.m.-12:30 a.m., all singles welcome, American Legion, 17 2nd Ave. N., Waite Park. 320-217-8779 or www.stcloudsingles. net

zone. Conducted a traffic stop on the vehicle. While speaking with driver, there were indicators the driver was possibly under the influence of alcohol. Field sobriety test and a breathalyzer reading of .124 indicated probably cause for DWI arrest. Suspect was arrested and booked in Stearns County Jail on fourth-degree DWI. Released to sober valid driver after completion of booking process. 9:39 p.m. Custody. Minnesota Street E. Complainant stated his daughter was afraid to go home because she was in fear of being hit. Officer spoke with daughter who stated she was not in fear of being hit. She was more afraid of the guys her mom may bring home because she does not know who they are. Officer spoke with mother and advised her of the complaint. She stated she has been separated from her husband for two years and has just started some online dating. She was in the metro area on a date and her vehicle broke down. Her daughter and her ex-husband were concerned the male she was out with would be bringing her home. Daughter went in residence with her mother. Father was advised by officer there were proper procedures to follow for getting custody of his daughter.

equipment. “Personally, I was thinking toward retirement, but that left me,” Al said. “It went right out of my mind the day of the fire. I won’t be able to think about that for a long time now. “But,” Al concluded, “we (Virginia, Al and family) would like to thank everyone involved with the fire and all the people for their support both in cards and in thought.”

Published each Friday by Von Meyer Publishing Inc.

Newstands BP Gas Station Casey’s General Store Holiday Gas Station Coborn’s

Kay’s Kitchen The Local Blend St. Joseph Meat Market St. Joseph Newsleader Office

Publisher/Owner Janelle Von Pinnon

Contributing Writer Cori Hilsgen

Editor Dennis Dalman

Design/Layout Tara Wiese

Advertising Sales Assistant Kathryn Bjorke Delivery Glen Lauer

P.O. Box 324 • 32 1st Ave. N.W. • St. Joseph, Minn. 56374 Phone (320) 363-7741 • Fax (320) 363-4195 • E-mail address: POSTMASTER: Send address changes to ST. JOSEPH NEWSLEADER, P.O. Box 324, St. Joseph, MN 56374.

St. Joseph Newsleader •

Friday, May 9, 2014

Plants from front page

with Miracle Gro and Bloombusters, Shermock noted. But no matter which product someone chooses, always follow the directions carefully, he added. Underwatering, of course, is the other extreme. Some people think their hanging baskets outdoors need only a little drizzle of water. As a result, it isn’t long before the flowers wilt and die. Outdoor baskets and containers dry out quickly in the sun. When they are watered, they should be drenched until water is running out of the bottoms. Then let them dry out a bit so the top inch or so of soil is dry, then (usually the next day in hot summer weather), give them another good soaking.

Be sure to prune

Chickie Meyer is the production manager for Thomsens. One of her perennial tips, every spring, is to warn customers about the dangers of overwatering and overfertilizing. Another favorite tip is to encourage customers not to be afraid to pinch and prune and cut back plants. Almost every plant

begin until right after Memorial Day when the danger of a killing frost is likely not possible. Most plants should never be put in until the ground is nice and warm, Meyer advises. It depends on the plants and flowers, however. Petunias and geraniums can handle chilly weather better than most. Impatiens and coleus, on the other hand, do not handle chilly nights very well. Most container plants can be planted now, Meyer said, but she cautions people to keep a daily watch on overnight temperatures. If there is the slightest danger the temps could get down into the low to mid-30s, the containers should be taken into the house or they should be covered with blankets, towels or some other material. For overall, general planting, Meyer tends to go by her “Lilac Rule.” When lilac bushes start to bud, hardier plants When to plant? Meyer and Shermock are of- can be planted. When lilacs ten asked the Big Spring Ques- start to bloom, anything can be tion: When to plant? Unfor- planted. tunately there is no definite answer as neither Shermock nor Meyer have a crystal ball. Some, Shermock said, like to plant on May 15. Others, however, insist planting shouldn’t

benefits from some judicious pruning every two weeks or so throughout the growing season. Unpruned plants and flowers will tend to get scraggly or spindly. Wave petunias are good examples of why pinching back is important. Some customers have learned if they pinch them back (leaves, stems and blooms) right after planting, they will be fuller and bloom longer. During the season, petunias can get spindly with long branches and fewer blooms. Cutting them back every two weeks will help them look better and bloom longer, with a compact and full look, Meyer noted. Some people think mistakenly that plants will die if a leaf, stem or bloom is cut off. “Don’t be shy about pinching and clipping plants,” she said. “Pinch them back every two weeks or so.”

Another tip customers should remember is to keep an eye on their yards from sunup to sundown, carefully noting where there are areas of full sun and areas of full or partial (dappled) shade. Then, when planning a garden or flower bed, use that sun-shade information when buying plants and flowers. Some, like petunias, like full sun (six or more hours of sun per day); others, like coleus and most hostas, prefer shade or dappled shade.


It’s too early in the season to determine customers’ new favorites, Shermock noted. “One year a certain color of flower won’t sell, and the next year it will be really hot,” he said. “Yellow is a good example. For years there was virtually no interest in yellow. Now it’s a hot color. Same with orange.” Geraniums – red, orange, pink, white – are a big seller every year at area greenhouses, Shermock said, noting that

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it’s Thomsens’ biggest “crop.” Many who buy geraniums also buy spike accent plants because the two go so well together. Hanging baskets are the pride and joy of Thomsens. One woman drives down every spring from Duluth just to purchase Thomsens’ hanging flower baskets. They are, she’s told Shermock, the very best and most beautiful of any hanging baskets of any greenhouse between Duluth and St. Cloud. Thomens’ staff creates 6,000 10-inch hanging baskets and about 1,500 14-inch baskets. Other big sellers are petunias in all their varieties. Thomsens carries about one million plants, shrubs, trees and flowers every year, Shermock said. Thomsens offers about 600 varieties of perennials (plants that come up every year) and 700 varieties of annuals (those that live only one season). Thomsens employs 30 workers during May, its peak month.

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May Special! All Designer Sunglasses are $50 OFF!



St. Joseph Newsleader •

Friday, May 9, 2014

Finken Water Cos. relocates to St. Joseph by Cori Hilsgen

Finken Water Cos. has moved to the industrial-park area in St. Joseph. The business, which was located in St. Cloud for the past 10 years, recently moved into the former Essilor/DBL Labs building. The building was empty for

several years before Finken purchased it. Owner Tom Finken said he began looking at relocating last year because of space needs. He is currently still in the process of remodeling the new location and is using both locations until the new one is finished. Finken said he has removed about 6,000

square feet and is adding about 10,000 square feet to the St. Joseph building. Finken Cos. includes both Finken Water Solutions and Finken Plumbing, Heating and Cooling. Finken’s father, Wilfred “Wif” Finken, started the business in 1961 in Melrose under the name Sta-So-Soft. It has grown

to 40 employees with five locations in St. Joseph, Albertville, Litchfield, Melrose and Osseo. Finken is also planning to open a warehouse in Maple Grove and provides residential plumbing, heating and cooling services in North Dakota. The business has expanded from traditional water treatment with water softeners to include also ultra-violet light and reverseosmosis treatment systems. It works with small and large agricultural poultry and dairy applications, car washes, schools, churches and city systems. Finken services many of the Holiday car-wash stations in Minnesota. The company is also known for its chemical-free treatment of arsenic in wells and water supplies. Finken’s Water Solutions provides healthy water options for homes, businesses and cities through various treatment systems as well as bottled water. The company delivers five-gallon and one-gallon jugs of distilled, spring, reverse-osmosis and fluorinated water to thousands of customers monthly. Drivers also deliver coffee products and watersoftener salt to homes and businesses. Finken gave an example of purifying water for a large poultry operation in Iowa. He said he met the owner at an agricultural show in St. Paul. The owner had worked with four other companies in Iowa before Finken Water Solutions provided them with the equipment that correctly treated their water. He was able to help the owner improve his production by removing the contaminants that were in the water.

Finken Plumbing, Heating and Cooling installs and services systems for commercial and residential clients. Two new buildings the company has worked on recently include the REJUV Medical building in Waite Park and the new residential apartment building, “The Waterford,” at Country Manor in Sartell. The company is also a certified radon locator and mitigator and installs geothermal systems. Finken is most proud of how his company is able to handle its work load. He said the company employs a young team of people, many with families and children, and he tries to be flexible and open. He said the hardest part of his position right now is finding good, qualified employees – people who want to work. “There’s such a shortage because the kids out there aren’t going to plumbing school or heating school as much,” Finken said. “Some schools aren’t even teaching industrial arts anymore.” He said many people got out of the trades and found other occupations when the housing markets changed. “I think, talking to other people in the workforce, it has been hard to find good employees,” Finken said. “We’ve gone through a lot of changes over the years. When the economy crashed, we took a beating like everyone else as far as not getting paid and things like that. We had to overcome a fairly big hurdle, but I had a great bank (Freeport State Bank) behind me, which made all the difference in the world.” Finken has been the chief executive officer of Finken Cos. for

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Friday, May 9, 2014 17 years. He grew up and lived in Melrose until 2006 when he and his family moved to Sauk Rapids. Prior to moving to Sauk Rapids, he was the Melrose Fire Chief for seven years. He was also involved with the Minnesota Water Quality Board. Finken is married to Tanya Finken, who owns “Kay’s Kitchen.” They have been married for 11 years and have two daughters, Kenzie, 10, and Alexis, 8. The family recently sold its Sauk Rapids home and is currently living in the “Mill Stream” loft apartments in St. Joseph. Kenzie and Alexis attend All Saints Academy. Finken said they often get asked how they can manage it all. He said his daughters spend time both at Kay’s Kitchen and at Finken’s where they have their own cubicles to do their homework. “Tanya always has something going,” Finken said. “She is one of the biggest supporters of bringing other businesses into town. She feels it just gets more people in the city.” Are you energetic with a positive attitude? Do you want to make a difference in the life of a senior? Home Instead Senior Care is looking for experienced CAREGivers in the St. Stephen area for a variety of day shifts and possible overnights.

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St. Joseph Newsleader • Finken said he has some flexibility on his end. To take a break, the family often spends time at their campsite by Brainerd. Since Saturdays and Sundays are busy days at Kay’s for Tanya, he will often travel to the site with Kenzie and Alexis, and Tanya will come up in the evening or other times when she is able to. “It’s been a lot of transition the last few years,” Finken said. The couple’s schedules often revolve around the girls’ activities. Finken wants people to know he and his company are involved and active in the area. The company participates in and donates water to many local events. “We want to be part of the community,” Finken said. Finken Water Cos. is located at 628 19th Ave. NE. The telephone number is 1-877-346-5367.


HOME HEALTH AIDE 7-11:30 a.m. & 3:30-8 p.m. 3-4 days per week

Duties include: daily personal care, grooming, dressing, light meal prep, medication administration and light to moderate housekeeping. If interested please stop by for an application or call Karen Hennessy at (320) 363-1313. 21 16th Ave. SE St. Joseph, MN 56374

photo by Cori Hilsgen

Tom Finken discusses his company’s relocation to the St. Joseph Industrial Park. He purchased and is in the process of remodeling the former Essilor/DBL Labs building. For more information visit www.


St. Joseph Newsleader •


Friday, May 9, 2014

Opinion Our View

We should ponder lessons from the Smith killings

The trial in Little Falls of Byron Smith in late April was very disturbing, but there are lessons to be learned from it. Smith was convicted of shooting to death two teenagers (male and female cousins) who were in the process of burglarizing his home just north of Little Falls. The jury took only three hours to make up its mind that Smith is guilty of premeditated murder. Now age 65, he will likely spend the rest of his life in prison. Lesson 1 we can learn from the trial is all parents should warn their children what can happen if they break into someone else’s house or apartment. This is not to say young people have a penchant for burglary, but as every parent knows, many children, even well raised and courteous ones, sometimes indulge in foolish escapades and larks, some verging on the illegal and/or the felonious. One such escapade could be trespassing or entering a place where they don’t belong. It would have been good, obviously, if the two young burglars had been caught and arrested by law enforcement, as they should have been. They could then have been punished and eventually redeemed from their criminal behavior. Their crossing the boundary line into an illegal action, sadly, led directly to their hideous deaths. Lesson 2 we can learn from the trial is people who are festeringly frustrated, as Smith clearly was, should not let that frustration boil over into the kind of anger that can lead to cold-blooded murder. Smith should have called law enforcement as soon as he heard via his tape-recording system that the young burglars had broken the glass window on the first level of that house. Instead, he sat in a chair in his basement with a rifle and handgun, waiting for the intruders to come down those basement steps. It was meticulously planned well in advance. He was ready to kill. His excuse is he was afraid for his life. The jurors, however, saw right through that ruse. Smith did, in fact, practically “lure” the burglars there by parking his vehicle out of sight, then sitting down calmly and waiting to kill the both of them. After wounding and incapacitating them, Smith’s life was certainly not in danger. He proceeded to shoot them again in a form of gleeful revenge. It was a classic case of letting a seething rage take charge, over-reacting, going way beyond the reasonable limits of defending one’s own life and property. The evidence clearly demonstrated Smith took the law into his own hands in what amounted to a couple of swift, grisly, summary executions. It’s just a tragic shame such an unthinkable collision had to happen: two foolish teenage burglars and an angry man set on vengeance. The outcome was a doomed one for all three. The lessons to be learned from it, in brief, once again are these: Don’t break into houses; don’t take the law into one’s own hands.

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.

It’s time to abolish executions

A rope that was too long led to the abolition of the death penalty in Minnesota. A convicted man, 28-year-old William Williams of St. Paul, had shot to death a 16-year-old boy with whom he’d reportedly had a two-year sexual relationship. He then also killed the boy’s mother. Williams and the boy had met in St. Paul when both were recovering from diphtheria in a hospital. Williams was sentenced to die by hanging, with his death date set for Feb. 13, 1906. In the basement of the Ramsey County Jail, workmen set up the scaffold and obtained the rope. In measuring the rope, however, they did not take into account how far down a rope can stretch when a body is dangling from the end of it. Normally, a rope will break the hanged man’s neck. In Williams’ case, he fell through the trapdoor, the rope stretched and his feet hit the ground. Three frantic policemen had to hold the rope up for nearly 15 minutes, the time it took for Williams to strangle to death. News of the botched hanging spread far and wide. Many in Minnesota were outraged, including State Rep. George MacKenzie (R.-Gaylord), who began an impassioned fight to abolish the death penalty. His legislative effort was successful in 1911, five years after the botched hanging. Minnesotans should be proud this state has not executed a person in 103 years. Let’s hope the botched execution last week in Oklahoma convinces that state’s citizens and legislators to abolish capital punishment there, too. In fact, let’s further hope it helps bring an end to the death punishment in all 50 states.

Dennis Dalman Editor Currently, 32 states allow for capital punishment, and there are slightly more than 3,000 inmates awaiting execution in those states. There was a four-year moratorium on executions because of a 1972 U.S. Supreme Court decision, but in 1976 executions were allowed to continue. Since then, 1,378 people, including a few women, have been put to death, mostly by lethal injection. Clayton Lockett was the man who took 43 minutes to die last week in Oklahoma. Apparently, one of his veins popped open, preventing the lethal drugs from doing their sinister work. Lockett writhed, gasped, convulsed and attempted to speak as he endured the slow torture of dying slowly, strapped down on the gurney in the death chamber. There are some who have not a drop of pity for Lockett. On June 3, 1999, a recent high-school graduate, Stephanie Neiman, gave her friend a ride to her home where they stepped into a home-invasion burglary in progress. One of the three men, Lockett, tried to grab Neiman’s keys to her brand-new Chevy truck. She fought to retain the keys. He beat her up. The men bound and taped her mouth, then forced her into the truck and drove her into the country where Lockett raped her. Lockett’s accomplices dug a shallow grave in a ditch.

Lockett then shot Neiman with a sawedoff shotgun, but she was still alive. He reloaded, shot her again and ordered the two men to bury her. One man said, “She’s still alive.” Lockett told them to bury her anyway. They did. Lockett’s suffering on the death gurney was nothing compared to the agony his 19-year-old victim endured along that country road. Despite that, we as a supposedly civilized society should abolish the death penalty, especially when these cases of botched executions (“cruel and unusual punishment,” according to the U.S. Constitution) keep happening. It’s easy to understand the rage and need for revenge of the loved ones of victims of such fiendish crimes. Still, killing these criminals in so-called “humane” ways is almost worse than deeds done by crazed killers because these executions are committed with such cool, calm, “rational” state planning and deliberation. Such executions are truly cold-blooded, more befitting beastly tyrannies like Syria than supposedly civilized countries like the United States. There are many arguments against capital punishment: They don’t really deter crime, the endless appeals are too expensive, the penalty is unequally applied due to race or socio-economic factors, all too often there have been people waiting on death row or even executed who have been determined to be not guilty. Those are all good reasons for getting rid of the death punishment in all states. There’s another good reason: Enlightened societies should not resort to such barbarism.

Letter to editor

May is Poppy Month – a salute to veterans Elaine Vogel, chairman American Legion Auxiliary St. Joseph Some people consider it a real job to seek donations – and, perhaps nor-

mally it might be. However, I certainly have not found that to be true when visiting the various businesses and asking them to support the American Legion Auxiliary’s Poppy Program. This year 124 businesses respond-

ed and made donations. What a wonderful way to thank our veterans for their service to all of us. A million thanks to each of you!

Easter-egg hunt goes high-tech I’m always up for a treasure hunt. As a child I remember a small version of one, let’s call it a trinket hunt, when I was visiting my grandma. All the neighbor kids got together and were rummaging through my grandma’s and her next door neighbor’s yards, looking in trees, digging up containers with costume jewelry and matchbox cars, all while following a list of clues we would find in each location. The final prize was a jar full of coins, enough for everyone involved to go a few blocks away and get ice cream at the local shop. It kept all of us kids busy for hours and out of trouble. This past Easter weekend, three generations, including my two daughters and I, my parents and my brother, headed out of town to visit my sister and her family. Most Easter weekends with our family tend to include egg hunts, candy and a visit from the Easter Bunny. While our trip included all of those, my dad and brother wanted to make it extra special by adding a new tradition, a geocaching Easter candy hunt. This hunt included having to follow along using a

Tara Wiese Guest Writer battery-operated global positioning system with a list of coordinates pointing us in the direction we needed to locate the Easter cache. My brother had pre-programmed four destination points. Those original sites were where clues were hidden. The gps would say approaching within 16 feet and then they would have to search high and low. We helped my daughters and my two nieces follow the directions on the gps to find the clues. Each clue stated a compass heading and number of paces in the right direction to find each prize. Imagine the looks on the girls’ faces after following all the steps to find their gold. Geocaching is the modern-day search for buried treasures using gps-enabled de-

vices. There are more than two million active geocaches and more than six million geocachers worldwide. For more information, visit A friend of mine, who has found almost 150 treasures, told me there is a phone app you can download in addition to the website. This app shows you locations and coordinates where caches are hidden, the level of difficulty and their sizes. It also shows you the nearest caches to your current location. Once you find one of these caches, there is a logbook for you to sign. Some of these caches even have trinkets and treasures for you to swap out and keep for yourself. If you did not find the cache, the owner can email you hints so you can return a second time and keep looking. I think everyone likes to find a prize, whether you’re 5 years old or 80 years young. Even as an adult, I will never turn down the chance to get the overwhelming feeling of anticipation when I find the “pot ‘o’ gold at the end of the rainbow.”

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St. Joseph Newsleader •

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YOU ARE NOTIFIED THAT default has occurred in the conditions of the following described Mortgage: INFORMATION REGARDING MORTGAGE TO BE FORECLOSED 1.

Date of Mortgage: April 8, 2004


Mortgagors: KAASI, Inc., a Minnesota corporation


Mortgagees: Plaza Park Bank, a Minnesota banking corporation

4. Recording Information: Recorded on April 14, 2004, as Document Number 1107512, in the Office of the Stearns County, Minnesota 5.

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Family Owned & Operated 648 NE Lincoln Ave., St. Cloud SCRAP: 320-252-4002 • NEW STEEL: 320-258-3003 800-246-4002 •

County Recorder

Registrar of Titles of

Assignments of Mortgage, if any: None.


Tax parcel identification number of the mortgaged premises: 04.01752.0001 and 04.01752.0002.


Legal description of the mortgaged premises: See Exhibit A Check here if all or part of the described real property is Registered (Torrens)


The physical street address, city, and zip code of the mortgaged premises: 38440 55th Avenue North, Sartell, MN 56377


The person holding the Mortgage: (check one) is a transaction agent, as defined by Minn. Stat. 58.02, subd. 30 The name(s) of the transaction agent, residential mortgage servicer, and the lender or broker, as defined in Minn. Stat. 58.02 is/are _______________________________________________________________________________ _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

The transaction agent's mortgage identification number, if stated on the Mortgage, is __________________________


is not a transaction agent, as defined by Minn. Stat. 58.02, subd. 30 The name(s) of the residential mortgage servicer and the lender or broker, as defined in Minn. Stat. 58.02, is Not Applicable 10. If stated on the Mortgage, the name of the mortgage originator, as defined in Minn. Stat. 58.02, is Not Applicable.

INFORMATION REGARDING FORECLOSURE 11. The requisites of Minn. Stat. 580.02 have been satisfied. 12. The original principal amount secured by the Mortgage was $375,000.00. 13. At the date of this notice the amount due on the Mortgage, including taxes, if any, paid by the holder of the Mortgage, is: $470,619.65. 14. Pursuant to the power of sale in the Mortgage, the Mortgage will be foreclosed, and the mortgaged premises will be sold by of Stearns County, Minnesota, at public auction on July 1, 2014, 10:00 Uniform a.m., atConveyancing Stearns County Office Minnesota BlanksSheriff’s Form 60.2.1 Pagethe 2 ofSheriff 3 Civil Division, 807 Courthouse Square, St. Cloud, Minnesota 56303.

15. The time allowed by law for redemption by Mortgagor or Mortgagor's personal representative or assigns is six months after the date of sale. Page 1 of 3


16. Minn. Stat. 580.04(b) provides, "If the real estate is an owner-occupied, single-family dwelling, the notice must also specify the date on or before which the mortgagor must vacate the property if the mortgage is not reinstated under section 580.30 or the property redeemed under section 580.23." If this statute applies, the time to vacate the property is 11:59 p.m. on Not Applicable.


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Name and address of Attorney for Mortgagee or Mortgagee Assignee:

Name of Attorney for Mortgagee:

Stinson Leonard Street LLP (ADM/RLG) 150 South Fifth Street, Suite 2300 Minneapolis, MN 55402

____________________________________________ Adam D. Maier, Attorney Minnesota Uniform Conveyancing Blanks Form 60.2.1

Page 3 of 3

EXHIBIT A Legal Description

St. Joseph Newsleader •


Friday, May 9, 2014

Perske will ‘run until he drops;’ wins DFL endorsement S a r t e l l Mayor Joe Perske, who has run more than 90,000 miles as a marathon man, is not done running yet – not by a long shot. Perske After winning the DFL endorsement last Saturday, Perske told his applauding supporters he will “run until he drops” for the U.S. Sixth Congressional seat now occupied by Rep.

Michele Bachmann (R-Stillwater). Perske called it the “race of a lifetime.” Bachmann announced last year she would not seek a fifth term. That seat will be determined in the Nov. 4 election this year. Perske’s Republican opponent will be Tom Emmer, who won the Republican endorsement. After his endorsement triumph, Perske told the audience if he is to win, it has to be a race in which others are running, too, along with him. “This race is not about me,” he said. “It is about you, your kids, your grandkids, the elderly and the kids who haven’t been born yet.

It’s about coming together to solve problems.” Saturday, May 3 was a very big day for Perske, Sartell mayor, middle-school teacher and long-time soccer coach in Sartell. In Monticello, the Sixth U.S. House District delegates voted four times until, on that fourth voting round, Perske garnered 62 percent of the votes. He needed 60 percent to win the endorsement. The other contender was Jim Read, a political science professor at the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University. Read promptly announced he would support Perske throughout the election season. Endorsing Perske on stage at




Ten steps to successful renovations Perhaps you’ve finally decided to carry out the renovations you’ve been dreaming about for years. But where to start? And how to avoid botching the job? It’s all a matter of careful planning. These 10 steps are a guide to make your task easier; follow them, and you’re sure to be proud of your finished renovation project. 1. Evaluate your needs in a realistic way. If you expect to sell your home in a few years, you won’t see things in the same way as if you plan to spend the rest of your life there. If you’re there for the long term, try to anticipate the needs of your family down the road; determine if the work you’re planning to do now will make sense in a few years’ time. 2. Your aesthetic desires are important, but major home maintenance should come first. If your electric wiring is old and the roof is beginning to show its age, this kind of maintenance work should be carried out before you consider any other types of improvements to the house. The golden rule: maintenance before renovations. Ignore this particular guideline at your peril! You won’t enjoy your new sun room if rainwater is dripping through your ceiling elsewhere in the house. 3. Read all available information about the type of renovations you’re considering. Useful sources include documents published by government organizations, specialized magazines and websites. Grill friends, neighbors and material suppliers about their knowledge and experiences with renovation. You’ll want to avoid reproducing their horror stories! 4. Draw up several different plans. You might entrust this step to a professional (architect, architectural technician or interior designer), having first looked through their portfolios and checked their references. They can draw up definitive plans and, if you wish, prepare estimates for the materials required. 5. Don’t go any further before having your plans approved by your municipality. Renovation regulations vary considerably from one town to another. 6. In order to prepare as precise a budget as possible, shop around for the different types of materials, comparing their prices as well as their durability. Plan for an extra 10 or 20 percent of your budget to meet unexpected expenses, which have an amazing ability to sneak up and take you by surprise. 7. If you need financing, a consultant at your banking institution will be able to explain the various avenues open to you, taking into account any equity available in the home and your assets. They will be well informed about any financial products intended specifically for homeowners to fund renovations.

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the district convention in Monticello were former U.S. Rep. Bill Luther and Twin Cities businessman Jim Graves, who ran against Bachmann for the Sixth District seat in 2012 and nearly won, with just a few thousand votes shy of victory. That election was Bachmann’s fourth win for the two-year seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. “Joe is the fellow that can win in November,” Graves told the crowd. “Joe is a very tenacious, hard-working, ethical person with deep roots in the district. We all know we cannot win in November with simply our fellow DFLers. We need votes from the independents and moderate Republicans to get the job done.”

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Perske, during a question-answer period at the convention, said he would seek to improve rather than repeal the Affordable Health Care Act, often dubbed ObamaCare. He also said federal policy should address global climate change and that reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies should be a nationwide goal instead of abortion. Perske has long espoused a pro-life position. He also said the gridlock that now plagues the U.S. Congress must end. The Sixth District, which includes much of the St. Cloud area extends down along the river corridor to the northern area of the Twin Cities. It has long been widely considered as a Republican stronghold.


by Dennis Dalman

8. Now comes the critical step: the choice of contractor. Verify he or she is well-established, has all the required permits, is a member of a professional association and has worked on similar projects. Ask them for references, a detailed estimate and a clear-cut contract with a deadline for completion of the work. Deciding to carry out at least some of the renovation work yourself will translate into substantial savings. 9. Once the work has started, be present at the work site as much as possible in order to quickly detect any mistakes and rapidly resolve any problems by discussing them with the contractor. 10. When the work is finished, ensure it has been done as stipulated in the contract – don’t sign anything until all is completed to your satisfaction. Finally, wait until the end of the payment time limit stated in the contract to pay the contractor your last installment. This gives you some leverage if any unresolved details arise in the days after the work crew clears out.

St. Joseph V25 I19