President Dwight Eisenhower had just taken office when Fran Saeger and the late Roy Lundmark began meeting at Bemidji's Third Street Café for coffee and to chat. Saeger said coffee at that time, 1953, cost a dime and the two men matched coins every morning to see who would foot the 20-cent bill.
The Port-A-Johns stand in neat ranks, tents dot the hillsides, camping supplies cover the convenience store tables -- it's time for Country Fest Minnesota. "Lots of activity," said Justin Chrz. "VIP is almost filled up. Weather's cooperating. Artists are all happy." Chrz is co-owner with his father, Frank Chrz, of Turtle River Golf and Entertainment Center, the site of the Thursday-Saturday Country Fest Minnesota. Today the 40-by-60-foot main stage and 20-by-28-foot secondary stages will move onto the driving range and at noon on Thursday the music will roll.
North Central Door LLC, a 40-year-old Bemidji manufacturer of garage doors, will move into the Bemidji Industrial Park this summer. The company is seeking Industrial Development Revenue Bonds and Job Opportunity Building Zone status. The Bemidji City Council will meet at 7 p.m. Monday in Council Chambers at City Hall, 317 Fourth St. N.W. Public hearings and action on the City Council's Business Subsidy Agreement with North Central Door and the JOBZ application are on the agenda. The site of North Central Door's new facility is in a previously established area designated for JOBZ.
On Dec. 14, 2004, the Institute for Healthcare Improvement launched the 100,000 Lives Campaign. The goal was to recruit hospital to commit to preventing that many deaths during the next 18 months by adopting six procedures proven to lessen dangers for patients. Participating in the December 2004 conference in Orlando, Fla., were representatives of North Country Health Services -- President and CEO Jim Hanko, Dr. Christopher Anderson, Dr. Bill Muller and Dr.
At 7:48 p.m. Thursday, the Bemidji Fire Department responded to a house fire at 1604 Fifth St. N.E. No one was injured in the blaze. However, a cat was lost. Kay Mack, who owns the rental property with her husband, Larry, said the house is significantly damaged and possibly totaled. Upon arrival, firefighters found medium to heavy smoke coming from the south side of the house. They entered through the south door attacking the fire first in the kitchen and the bedroom where it started.
Alvin John Wind Jr., 45, assistant chief of Leech Lake Tribal Police, was sentenced on June 7 in Cass County Court for gross misdemeanor fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct. Judge John Roue of Crookston traveled to Walker for the sentencing. He withheld adjudication and put Wind on two years' probation. Conditions of probation include remaining law abiding, no alcohol or illegal drugs, random testing, DNA sample and no contact with the victim.
Col. Basil Leblanc's deployment to Iraq has put him in the position of brigade surgeon to soldiers he delivered as babies when he was a young medical student in New Ulm. "Of course, that's one of the terrific things about the National Guard and especially the Minnesota National Guard -- it's a family operation," Leblanc said. Leblanc is the brigade surgeon for the Minnesota National Guard 1/34 Brigade Combat Team stationed at Camp Adder in Tallil, south central Iraq. He spoke on Wednesday morning Minnesota time during a conference call from his base.
Imagine Professor Harold Hill coming to Bemidji, rather than River City, and selling a karaoke system instead of a boys' band. Throw in a little "How to Speak Minnesotan" and the recipe develops for "Don't Hug Me," the opening production of the 2006 Paul Bunyan Playhouse season. The original cast performance of Phil Olson's 2004 musical romantic comedy will open at 8 p.m. today. Tickets cost $20 for adults and $12 for youth 18 and younger. Call the box office at 751-7270 for details and reservations.
The Downtown Development Authority has added a raft of new features to the sixth annual Kraus-Anderson Walleye Classic. Anglers will start their engines and launch their boats at 7 a.m. Saturday with weigh-in beginning at 3:30 p.m. at the Lake Bemidji waterfront. There are 100 two-person teams vying for the first prize of $10,000 and other cash prizes awarded to the top 15 teams. The emcee will be Chip Leer, fishing guide and one of the founders of "Fishing the Wildside," a fishing promotion organization. Family activities at the waterfront will run from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Wendy Potratz drew on professional and personal experience to write her guidebook for parents and young children starting out in team sports. "Agnes Plays Soccer: A Young Cow's Lesson in Sportsmanship" tells a story children will identify with. Agnes, a child in the guise of an animal, learns to deal with sportsmanship, respect and empathy for others, anger management, self pity and friendship as she takes part in a beginning soccer league for youngsters. Her wise parents check out the program, the coach and the philosophy -- having fun and learning skills -- before they sign Agnes up.