Zach Kayser covers local government and city issues for the Pioneer. He previously worked for the Wadena Pioneer Journal, and is an alumni of the University of Minnesota, Morris.
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BEMIDJI -- Tourists and local Paul and Babe lovers will have access to the iconic statues unrestricted by renovations to Paul Bunyan Park -- at least until August. Marcia Larson, Bemidji Parks and Recreation director, said although construction was previously scheduled to start in July, it will now start after the Dragon Boat Festival the first weekend in August. "At that point, the parking lot, trail area, sidewalks, those will all probably be closed off," Larson said. Larson said the city will start examining bids July 10, and the City Council is scheduled to pick a contractor July 21.
WALKER -- Rick Nolan did some literal trailblazing while on the campaign trail Saturday. U.S. Congressman Nolan donned work gloves and hefted a pulaski, the combination axe/hoe tool, while helping...
BEMIDJI -- In its 10th year, the Bemidji-area chapter of "Let's Go Fishing's" Senior Outings gives elderly residents the chance to reconnect with the most Minnesotan of all pastimes. Retiree Roy Stephens has been a mainstay on the senior outings, having carried a love of fishing all the way from his days fly-casting for trout as a teenager in Washington state.
BEMIDJI -- Former Minnesota Rep. Bill Kuisle visited Bemidji Thursday while campaigning for Jeff Johnson, the GOP-endorsed candidate for governor. A Rochester farmer, Kuisle served in the state House of Representatives from 1996 to 2004. Minnesota's unemployment rate was down to 4.7 percent in April, but in Kuisle's opinion there's still much to do in improving the situation facing recent college graduates and others looking for work.
BEMIDJI -- Former GOP state representative Dean Simpson of Perham stopped in Bemidji Wednesday as a campaign surrogate for Kurt Zellers, who is running in the GOP primary for governor. Zellers chose Simpson as his running mate last month. Simpson served six years in the Legislature before he retired in 2008. He jumped back into state politics only after careful deliberation he said in a Pioneer interview. "It took some soul-searching; the decision to come forward and step out again," he said.
BEMIDJI -- The iconic statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox in Bemidji ranked fourth among the greatest “Quirky Landmarks” in the United States, according to an online...
BAGLEY -- Controversial Christian speaker Usama Dakdok gave a multi-hour speech on the supposed evils of Islam on Monday at Bagley High School, his third and final presentation in three days in this small, northwest Minnesota community. Dakdok spoke to an audience of about 100 people Monday, mostly seniors.
BEMIDJI -- Oil industry representatives came on Wednesday to Bemidji to head off opposition to new Northern Minnesota crude pipelines. Dan Gunderson and Erin Roth hosted a small invite-only luncheon at the Hampton Inn & Suites for the American Petroleum Institute, a trade group that does lobbying, public relations work and research on behalf of the oil industry. Invitees included local government and school officials as well as business leaders.
BEMIDJI -- Northwest Minnesota residents interested in parks and trails filled City Hall on Tuesday for a planning meeting to help establish an area counterpart to the new statewide Greater Minnesota Regional Parks and Trails Commission. Bemidji Mayor Rita Albrecht and Crow Wing County Natural Resource Manager Bryan Pike were appointed last year by Gov. Mark Dayton to represent the 15-county District 2, one of six districts that make up the commission.