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Mayor Richard Lehmann truly believes there will be an events center in Bemidji five years from now. "The city is poised for it," he said. But, whether Bemidji State University hockey will be a partner is not yet known. "My hope is that we can still work with BSU," Lehmann said.
Whether BSU was given another 10 days or 30 days, it wouldn't have mattered, City Manager John Chattin said on Friday. A day after Thursday night's council meeting during which the Bemidji City Council voted 6-1 to deny Bemidji State University President Jon Quistgaard's request for an extension on a potential events center commitment, Chattin said any commitment from BSU would have been non-binding anyway. The council, too, struggled on Thursday to accept new wording in a proposed memorandum of understanding that was intended to commit the university to the events center project. The most
Ron Johnson maintained that the Bemidji City Council voted to save BSU hockey, not kill it. "What we did was keep it alive," he said. Johnson, one of six City Council members who voted in favor of a $50 million events center, said the vote kept the possibility of a new Bemidji State University hockey arena afloat. A smaller arena might not be able to hold athletic offices, a second sheet of ice or a weight room, but the design team may still be able to incorporate suites and allow for seating of up to 4,000 spectators, Johnson said. For BSU, the suites are a necessity, BSU President Jon Qu
Jon Quistgaard stood before the Bemidji City Council and pleaded for two more weeks. Saying that he was unable to commit Bemidji State University to the events center project until at least Jan. 15, BSU's president begged the council for more time. The council denied his request.
Neither the city nor Bemidji State University has, to date, defined its level of commitment to the events center project. But, the breadth of their dedication will finally be revealed during a 5:30 p.m.
An offer from the National Guard Armory has resulted in a temporary home for local skateboarders. Sgt. Seth Martell has made indoor space available at the Armory for use as an indoor skate park for local enthusiasts.
The Bemidji Fire Department has given La Ceiba, Honduras, some much-needed Christmas presents. Fire Chief Dick Sathers last week drove to Maple Grove, Minn., to deliver about 12 full sets of clothing, helmets and boots that will be delivered to La Ceiba to be used by local firefighters. The donated Bemidji gear no longer meets the standards of the National Fire Protection Agency.
Nate Dorr is on a mission. Again. In the mid-1990s, the Bemidji resident was loosely involved with a local effort supporting a Bemidji skate park. Ten years later, he's advocating for the same skate park. Dorr, 31, is now working with the Bemidji Youth Advisory Commission as a volunteer consultant to encourage the construction of a free, public skate park that would be constructed in Bemidji. "The only agenda I have is to get a skate park built in Bemidji," Dorr said. The campaign in the '90s resulted in Smart Skate, a privately run indoor skate park that is now closed.
The two adults who were sickened by carbon monoxide poisoning have been identified. Charles Eugene Bartz, 66, and Catherine Mary Brewster, 53, both of Pennington, were taken to two Minnesota hospitals Saturday for treatment of carbon monoxide poisoning. Brewster was treated and released at North Country Regional Hospital for bruises she sustained in a fall while vacating the residence, according to a press release from the Beltrami County Sheriff's Office.
The Bemidji Police Department will host a public meeting at 6 p.m. Jan. 3 at City Hall to inform the public about a Level III sex offender who is expected to be moving into Bemidji. Anthony Michael Bishop, 37, was convicted of first-degree criminal sexual conduct in 1991 in Hennepin County, according to the State of Minnesota. The Bemidji Police Department issued a press release on Wednesday detailing its intent to hold the public meeting to alert the public about Bishop.