The Bemidji School District administration will implement a hiring freeze immediately. It will also reduce this year's remaining supply and equipment budgets for school buildings. Without budget adjustments, the district could face a negative fund balance in the general fund starting in 2010-11, Chris Leinen, director of business services, said Thursday night. At a special meeting, Leinen presented his five-year budget projection for the district's general fund to the Bemidji School Board.
A Bemidji State University sophomore who appeared on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" Thursday walked away from the TV game show with a check for $16,000. "Millionaire" aired locally at 4 p.m. today on KSTP and will air again at 7 p.m.
Thousands of miles above sea level and hundreds of miles from home, eight Bemidji High School students explored the Collegiate Peaks in Colorado. They traveled to the wilderness area near Buena Vista, Colo., last summer with the BHS Outdoor Adventure Club. "They were champs," said Dan Bryant, OAC coordinator and BHS social studies teacher.
Jacqui Gillis will make her TV debut Thursday. The Bemidji State University sophomore will appear on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire," a trivia game show hosted by Meredith Vieira. Gillis told "Millionaire" she is a real "trivia geek" and her opportunity to be on the show was the dream of a lifetime. "I loved it," the 19-year-old said in a telephone interview this week from Chicago, where she is home for winter break. Gillis, who cannot reveal the results of the show before it airs Thursday, flew to New York City last fall for the Sept. 22 taping of the show.
The White Earth Oshki Manidoo "New Spirit" Center in Bemidji is now licensed and accepting youth referrals. Director Jill Hewitt said the center plans to take youth on or around Monday. As of Dec. 19, Oshki Manidoo is licensed by the Minnesota Department of Human Services as a children's residential facility with a chemical dependency certification. Substance use disorders will be the primary need of the youth at Oshki Manidoo. The White Earth Nation acquired the former Episcopal Community Services Gilfillan Center on 15th Street Northwest last summer as the site for Oshki Manidoo.
Offering emotional support and sober activities on a weekly basis, one program in Bemidji is reaching out to area youth interested in exploring sobriety. Rock Sober is a free group open to teens ages 14-18 in the greater Bemidji area. The group currently meets from 4-5:30 p.m. Mondays and Fridays at Evergreen Community Services in the Bridgman Center, 1418 Bemidji Ave. N. The Monday meetings focus on support and the Friday meetings focus on sober activities. "I like it," one youth said during a recent Rock Sober meeting. "It's fun.
Ten years ago, Evergreen Community Services opened its offices in the Bridgman Center. Now, the program has outgrown the roughly 5,000-square-foot office suite in the center, located at 1418 Bemidji Ave. N. "Staff are doubled up in small offices, essential program supplies have taken over the break and equipment room and there is limited space for new programs and drop-in clients," said Beth Warrick, ECS program director, in a recent Evergreen newsletter. ECS is part of Evergreen House, a community-based organization that focuses on strengthening youth and preserving families.
The proposed Bemidji regional events center can now be viewed in the form of a 3-D model at Bemidji City Hall. Students from Northwest Technical College and Bemidji State University created the acrylic model for a class project this fall.
Six months ago, one area couple had it all - a house where they lived with their three children, a car and a job. But, said the couple, who since lost all but the car, that was when they hit rock bottom. Now as guests of Servants of Shelter, the couple has hope for the future and a warm place to stay with three meals a day. SOS is a new organization providing shelter for the homeless at churches in Bemidji. Since Oct. 30, SOS has been offering overnight accommodations, hot supper, hot breakfast and sack lunches to families, single men and single women.
The Bemidji School Board has selected a Bemidji real estate agency to provide services regarding four vacant properties owned by the Bemidji School District. On Monday, the board voted unanimously to retain the services of Century 21 Dickinson Realtors of Bemidji out of four proposals received. Also Monday, the board voted unanimously to certify the final tax levy for 2009 for the district. With Century 21 Dickinson Realtors, the district will enter into a Multiple Listing Services contract for the sale of the former Community Education building located at 1420 Beltrami Ave. N.W.