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Pioneer Editorial: Cheers and Jeers

What a weekend to be in Bemidji

From Art in the Park to the Bemidji Symphony to vintage cars to theater to the Bemidji Community Band, this past weekend showcased all that is great about this community. You almost needed a pre-weekend rest in order to be prepared for what was to come. The 42nd annual Art in the Park Fine Arts and Craft Festival was one of the best ever, thanks to talented artists from around the region and cooperative weather. The festival also featured the Carnegie Library Centennial celebration, with performances by Heart of the Beast Puppet and Mask Theater. An all-female cast performed Shakespeare's "As You Like It" on the Lake Bemidji waterfront. Meanwhile, the Bemidji Symphony's free family concert featured Chris Brubeck's trio, Triple Play, showing off the orchestra's skills to an appreciative audience. As the weekend waned on Sunday, the Paul Bunyan Vintage Auto Club held its 26th annual car show and the Bemidji Area Community Band delighted its audience with a fine show at Baker Park.

Flying high

More than 100 young people took to the skies Saturday in the Young Eagles Rally held at the Bemidji Regional Airport. Sponsored by the local Experimental Aircraft Association, Chapter 1397, the event drew kids from ages 8 to 17 for free airplane rides. Area pilots donated their time and talents to share their love of flying with the young people.

Get a move on

A study of more than 2,000 middle-age American city dwellers showed that only about 17 percent of workers walked or rode their bikes on any portion of their commute. In what was billed as perhaps the first large U.S. study of health and commuting, the survey showed that those who were active commuters performed better on fitness tests. No surprises there. Getting more of our nation's workers to hoof it or bike to the job, we might be able to lower or obesity (and health insurance) rates.

Welcome workers

Group Workcamps volunteers spent last week on the Red Lake Indian Reservation doing home repair projects as part of a nationwide program sponsored by a nonprofit organization. It sends church youth groups, comprised of teen-agers and adult leaders from across the country, to live in a community for one week and serve at predetermined project sites. Unlike some volunteer organizations, Group Workcamps volunteers pay their own travel expenses and a registration fee, which is used to cover the cost of food, lodging and supplies. This is the ninth year the program has brought volunteers to Red Lake.