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Winthrop News
Lafayette, Minnesota
May 7, 2003     Winthrop News
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May 7, 2003

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E and L Bindery 3338 Umv. Ave. S.E. Minneapolis MH 5541 4 EStablished 1887 Volume 113, Number 27 W'mthrop, Minnesota II Illl I Wednesday, May 7, 2003 75 Page 3 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8&9 Page 12 Page 14 Week Blooming Basket ribbon cutting Planning Conference Generation for Warmth Prom 2003 Local Contractors Public Notices Our Community Happy Mother's Day > ::!:i:? i!ijiiiiiiiii,i!!ililU :m. - :. .. ;.'::=.,:: : . :::::=: ::!~:::i:~:::'~-':;;::k::::.: .:i:.: ================================ : :::::::::::: 'i!i!i!iki % :i:::. :: i~!!I - 4:::: ;::::::: :i:i:!:!:i !i f !!!iiii: : ~i: i i~i?!i~i~ ili~!i iiiiii!ii!ii ...... !i SP ng Fling held at GFW High School S~ff High School celebrated Spring Fling last week. The crowning of the ~.~g Fling King and Queen was held on Thursday afternoon. Nick w~tensen and Beth Schmitz were crowned following an activity fest. There i~also a King and Queen crowned for the activity fest. Candidates earned ,t ,s Ior their answers in several game shows. Schmitz and Josh Firle were utle Winners. Photo by Michael Matlison by Michael Mattison Two GFW fourth graders had a unique chance this spring to inter- view some former and future greats from the Minnesota Twins The Twins Caravan came to Minnesota Valley Lutheran High School with Landon Messner and Shay Brady getting the opportunity to meet and ask the stars some questions for KGFW-TV. Former players Harmon Killebrew and Bert Blyleven were on hand as well as current Twins Dustin Mohr, Matthew LeCroy and Bobby Kieity. Twins mascot TC was also in attendance. Messner and Brady interviewed each of the players. "Some of them talked a long time," Messner said. "My arm was getting tired (holding the micro- phone) so I rested it on one of the guys arms." Blyleven was Messner's favorite interview because he was the funniest. Blyleven gave Messner the infamous bunny ears while on camera. Brady got the opportunity to interview Killebrew. He talked about his days playing at the old Metropolitan Stadium. Tom Wheeler of KNUJ helped coordinate the 45 minutes that the GFW students got to spend with the baseball stars. Werner didn't tell his students that they would be able to interview the players when he had them do a project on the Minnesota Twins. KGFW-TV is completing its second year. Fourth graders have the opportunity to interview local people and learn many aspects of the television media. The end result with each group is a news episode that airs on the local cable channel. Thirty students participated in KGFW-TV this school year. Werner is looking at the possi- bility of running a couple of episodes during the summer, with students going to the local town celebrations and the Sibley and Renviile County Fairs to check out the action. Messner enjoy~l his experience with KGFW-TV. "! wanted to inter- view people. I thought it would be kind of fun to do that," he said. "I also wanted to see how to run digi- tal cameras and the VCRs." Brady has baseball in her family history. Her uncle was Edmund "Bing" Miller. At the age of 26, Miller began his major league career with the Washington Senators. He was part of the World Series champions Philadelphia Athletics in 1929 and 1930. He finished his career with a .311 batting average and 990 runs batted in. Miller died in a car accident on May 7, 1966. Brady brought a picture of her relative to school. She knew that Werner was a huge baseball fan. The photo was taken in China and was of the American All Stars. "Shay kept telling me that she had a relative that played baseball with Babe Ruth," Werner said. "She brought in the picture and, sure enough, there was the Bambino standing by Bing Miller." Brady's grandfather had the original picture and made copies of it, one of which is in Shay's posses-, sion. "We were looking through some of his old stuff and we found the picture," she said. "He asked me if I wanted a copy." While she is not a big baseball fan, Brady said she does like to watch the Twins. Werner held a root beer float party at the GFW Elementary School cafeteria on Tuesday for students that were involved with KGFW-TV this year. Shay Brady displays a picture of the 1939 American All Stars which was taken in China. Her great uncle, Bing Miller, played on the team with the leg- endary Babe Ruth. Photo contrit~ted by Doug Hanson will be less teachers next year at schools. Superintendent Steve the school last week that with expected next fall, it will be to reduce staff accordingly. of the large number of teach- mg this year, all of the reductions through attrition. the elementary school, there will be 10 less students next year peered. The current second ,.going into third grade, will be into two sections instead of three Students per section, reducing one ng position. There will still be three of first and second grade and two of kindergarten, third and fourth Natl~art of the elementary music teacher the an Thompson's time will be spent at Sti .naiddle school next year. The Perintendent also pointed out that chil- dren entering the school system in September will require the services of an additional certified staff position. The middle school will only see changes in the music department. The instrumental music teacher Lisa Wenninger, with help from the elementary music teacher, will cover the classes handle by Bobette Schauer. At the high school, the remaining half- time vocal music position will be covered by instrumental music teacher Lynnae Grack. Thus reducing one full-time music teacher. Through other staff realignments approximately 1.3 full-time positions will be reduced. One of those positions was a computer/secondary vocation position held by Don Adema. It is expected that there will be a couple of part-time positions offered. The high school also added four advanced placement classes in biology, psychology, calculus and English. The ons, ACE program will be eliminated. Interviews for special education, math- ematics, English and industrial tech posi- tions have been or are being held a( the high school. In other business, the school board reviewed the initial information for com- paring the Tomahawk, Gopher Valley, 212 and Minnesota River Conferences. Items such as mileage to the different sites, the number of activities that each conference holds, enrollments and cost of membership were included in the information. A public meeting will be held on Monday, May 19, in conjunction with the May School Board meeting to hear com- ments on the invitation to join the Minnesota River Conference. Information presented to the school board was to be dis- tributed to the public via students at the high school and middle school. The school board approved the contract with Dashir Management to handle r, ng . ~ GFW's cleaning and maintenance expens- es for the third year. According to figures provided by the administration, Dashir is projected to save the district $9,108 over the expenses from 2000 (the last year thai the school handled its own cleaning servic- es.) Of the savings, $6,300 comes from additional Health and Safety revenue. In 2002 the district saved $16,574. The new contract will call for an approximate increase of $2,500 to $58,106. The man- agement fee could be less, depending on negotiation with the local union, but will not be more. A review of the budget projections showed that the general fund balance will drop from $1,196,748 to $443,879 by June 30, 2003. The sharp decline is due to a $690,000 payoff of the energy efficiency loan, boiler repairs, heating costs, etc. The district spent $17,000 on repairs to the boil- er at the middle school and $II,000 in repairs at the elementary. However, the general fund is expected to increase by next year to $476,511. General fund money from the State is expected to be less because of declining enrollment. However ,revenue from the referendum and a decrease in expenses because of retiring staff and cost reductions offset that loss of revenue. The administration is budgeting for a decline of 35 students for next fall. Enrollment is projected to decrease until 2006. This summer the district is expecting to spend approximately $84,000 on roofs at the middle school. Some of the other major items include new lunch tables at the high school, $17,000; replacing part of the fence at the football field, $5,000; painting at the three sites, $8,000; parking/curb & gutter (last fall) at high school, $10,000; and ven- tilation units at elementary gym and middle school lunchroom, $45,000. The board approved the 2003-04 : school calendar. The first day of school will be September 2 with the final day of ctass- es on May 28. There are eight days of vacation at Christmas and two days at Easter. A bus route will be eliminated next year as the district goes from 12 to 11 routes. The district will reduce from 20 buses to 19 as its trades in two buses tbr one new 86-' passenger bus. With the larger bus, one shuttle route from Fairfax to Winthrop will also be eliminated. The district will trade in a bus from Gibbon and one from Winthrop. Also a new seven-passenger van will be purchased, replacing the 1997 Plymouth Voyager at the high school. That van will now be used by the custodians, replacing a 1990 Dodge Caravan with 170,000 miles. In his written report, Superintendent~ Malone stated that the sponsorship agree-~ ment with The Lafayette Charter School is nearly complete. Negotiations for a new contract with Local 284 started April 29. County Sheriff's .=nt has a busy Friday Sibley County Sheriff's Department was busy on Friday. Department received a report of a theft of an undeter- amount of anhydrous ammonia from South Central Co-op of on the evening before. Value has not yet been placed on the product. The theft is being investigated by the Sheriff's Anyone with information on the incident is asked to the Department at 507-237-4330. no,.,at 10:09 p.m on Friday, an Arlington-Green Isle police officer ^ ,,,'.t!ced some debris on the ground on the gravel lot north of the "ltllll 0 ' ' " ' elle ffice at Haggenmdler Lumber Company m Arhngton. Upon cracking the debris, a broken glass bottle and a container of accel- t Were found. The State Fire Marshall and the Sheriff's " . ' . . 22/111 gets new surface permitting, a five-mile section of State Highway 22 Highway 111, a few miles north of Nicollet, is set to be aced beginning Monday, May 12, according to Project kager Susan Museus of the Minnesota Department of should expect brief delays and lane restrictions in the New Sweden for about three weeks. Minnesota Construction Company, Inc. of Mankato, awarded the project with a bid of $375.310. Investigation into the fire that destroyed the United Farmers Cooperative elevator in Winthrop continues, according to Winthrop Fire Chief Mike Trebesch. State Fire Marshal Casey Stotts left the scene on Wednesday, April 30, and has not yet been in contact with Trebesch. Winthrop firefighters respond- ed to the call at about 2:30 a.m. after dispatch was notified of the fire by a part-time Winthrop Police Officer. The Winthrop Department was on the scene when an explo- sion blew the top off the elevator. Fourteen fire departments were on the scene Sunday morning and received water hauling assistance from Geib Well Company of Arlington and Bauerly Concrete of Glencoe. Approximately 200 fire- fighters were on the scene. Most departments began clean- ing up at about 9 a.m. and left the scene by noon but the Winthrop Department stayed on throughout the day. They took shifts for the following three days, watch!ng the site for potential flare-ups. About 40,000 bushels of grain were in the elevator when the blaze occurred. Also lost were a Gehl Skid loader, a 1979 pickup, a rail car mover, computers, office equipment and testing equipment. Estimated loss was between $700,000 and $1 million in proper- ty and equipment and about $150,000 in inventory. On Sunday, April 20, a ware- house at Unidoor in Gaylord was lost to fire. Seven fire departments responded to Gaylord's biggest fire in over 30 years. The fire was con- centrated in the main building's warehouse and machine room area. The call came in at 3:19 a.m. Easter morning when a resident reported a fire behind Unidoor. Upon investigation by Gaylord Police, dispatch was notified that flames were originating from inside the building. Approximately 150 firefighters were on the scene with some remaining for up to 13 hours. On Tuesday, April 22, Gaylord Police Chief Dale Roiger announced that investigators deter- :i::i:~:~:::~:::~i!!i~!!~i!~!ii!~ii~i~:i/ i~i~ ....... IH:!:I:!:!:~:: jli.I ....... : :i~ !,::7: : i:i~: % z::~:~ii .... .... )/; i i:/:i~iiii!!!!ii~i:ii~ili:ii!~?;.~!~il ! i:: !~!!i ~i,!:i:i?ii!i!:::', ,.?-. Cleanup at the United Farmers Cooperative elevator site in Winthrop is near- ing an end. The state fire marshal has taken evidence from the scene and is mined that the origin of the fire was of a suspicious nature. Losses were estimated in the millions of dollars. Gaylord firefighters were called back to the Unidoor site three times the following week. On Wednesday, April 23, they were back on the scene using foam to put out flames. They returned Saturday, April 26, to water down the rubble and also on Sunday, April 27. The wind had switched direction and rekindled the flames. analyzing it. No determination on the cause of the fire has been released. Photo by Micha(d Mlttilon