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Pioneer Editorial: Cheers and Jeers

Cheer: Paul Bunyan Trail completed

Last week, Walker and Bemidji mayors cut a ribbon to signify the official opening of the Paul Bunyan Trail section from Guthrie to Walker. The final 19-mile section of the trail connects the North Country with trails around the state.

Cheer: Community day

Bemidji State University is a major reason Bemidji's quality of life is top notch. The partnership between BSU and the community at large was celebrated last week with Community Appreciation Day. Food, football, fireworks, games and general sociability were part of the celebration.

Jeer: Penny foolish

A red cent isn't worth much, but it's still legal tender. Try telling that to a Washington state county treasurer who refused to accept 33,000 pennies to pay a property tax bill. The treasurer said she didn't have the staff to count the pennies and turned the payment down. The property owner had brought the buckets of pennies in as payment and a protest over fines against the tax bill he failed to pay last spring. He said his business is struggling and he didn't have the money at the time. He eventually paid in paper money.

Cheer: Healing gardens

North Country Regional Hospital opened two healing gardens. The outdoor garden, funded by the Neilson Foundation, featuring walkways, a labyrinth, gazebo, benches and three water features, honors the late Charlie Naylor, a major actor in Bemidji's development. The indoor garden, funded by Bank Forward, features a waterfall, plants, skylight and quiet places for rest and meditation. These are wonderful additions to the community health care center.