Thursday, May 31, 2012

Detour on Highway 75 from Warren to Stephen begins June 4

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Motorists traveling on Highway 75 in northern Minnesota will encounter a detour beginning Monday, June 4, as crews begin a resurfacing and culvert replacement project from Warren to Stephen.

Northbound traffic from Warren will be detoured west on Highway 1 for 11 miles to Alvarado then north on Marshall County Road 10 for approximately 15 miles, and east on Marshall County Road 5 to Highway 75. Southbound traffic will follow the same detour in reverse.

Local traffic and business access will be maintained but with restrictions to 11 foot lanes, gravel surfaces and delays.

The work is expected to be completed Aug. 4, weather permitting, giving motorists a smoother ride.

For more information on road conditions and construction, click on or call 5-1-1.

Highway 113 detour east of Waubun lifted today

DETROIT LAKES, Minn. — Motorists on Highway 113 in Mahnomen County will no longer encounter a detour east of Waubun. Crews opened the roadway earlier today.

Motorists will still experience lane closures with flaggers while crews finish resurfacing the roadway between Highway 59 and Mahnomen County Road 4.

All work is scheduled to be complete in mid-June, weather permitting. The work will provide a smoother ride and improve safety along the corridor.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation urges motorists to always drive with caution, slow down in work zones and never enter a road blocked with barriers or cones. For statewide travel information, visit, call 5-1-1 or log on to

Highway 9 reconstruction in Ada begins June 4

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Motorists will encounter a detour and delays as reconstruction of  Highway 9 in the city of Ada gets underway June 4.

Northbound traffic on Highway 9 will be detoured to Norman County Road 35 for approximately one mile, west on Highway 200, north on West Main Street to Seventh Avenue, then back to Highway 9. Southbound traffic will follow the same route in reverse.

The project limits extend from the bridge at the south end of Ada north to the intersection of Seventh Avenue, which is part of the project. Work includes new storm sewer installation, city water main and sewer system, grading, concrete paving and lighting.

The project benefits the community and highway users by replacing the old storm sewer system, aging water and sewer pipes under the highway, upgrading street lighting and giving motorists a smoother ride.

The work is scheduled to start June 4 and expected to be complete by mid-September, weather permitting.

For statewide construction and road condition information, visit or call 5-1-1.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Temporary road closure on 17th St E for West Fargo

(FARGO, N.D.) – May 30 – The North Dakota Department of Transportation (NDDOT) – Fargo District – would like to update the traveling public on the West Fargo Main Avenue reconstruction project.

Starting tomorrow, Thursday May 31, a section of 17th St. E. in West Fargo will be closed as crews relocate an underground gas line.  The road closure will occur on 17th St. E. between Main Ave. E. and 2nd Ave. E.

The eastbound only (one-way) route on the south frontage road between 17th St. E. and 45th St. N. will be reachable by way of Main Ave. E. during the temporary closure. West Fargo businesses along this stretch of roadway are accessible and open to the public by way of the south frontage road throughout the project.

Motorists will not be able to access the Main Ave. corridor when traveling north on 17th St. E. and will need to find an alternative route during the temporary closure. Weather permitting this section of roadway will re-open to the traveling public the evening of Saturday, June 2.

Motorists should be aware of trucks and equipment entering and exiting through the work zone. Speed limits in the work zone are 25 mph.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Highway 32 detour removal scheduled for May 30

DETROIT LAKES, Minn. — Motorists on Highway 32 in Clay County will encounter fewer delays when a road construction project detour is removed sometime on Wednesday, May 30.

Following the detour motorists will still experience lane closures with a pilot car operation while crews resurface the roadway between the Norman/Clay county line and Highway 10.

All work is scheduled to be complete in early July, weather permitting. The work will extend the roadway’s life and improve safety along the corridor.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation urges motorists to always drive with caution, slow down in work zones and never enter a road blocked with barriers or cones. For statewide travel information, visit, call 5-1-1 or log on to

Public meeting about Highway 9 reconstruction in Ada set for May 31

BEMIDJI, Minn. – The public is invited to attend an informational meeting to discuss Highway 9 reconstruction in Ada.. 

The meeting will be from 5 - 6 p.m. at the Ada Public Works Building, 900 W. Main St., Ada, Minn.

Shawn Groven, project engineer, and other engineering staff will be on hand to discuss project work schedules, time frames, traffic control and detour plans.

The work is scheduled to start June 4 and expected to be complete by mid-September, weather permitting.

To request an ASL or foreign language interpreter or other reasonable accommodations, call Janet Miller at 651-366-4720 or Minnesota Relay Service toll-free at 1-800-627-3529. You may also send an email to

For statewide construction and road condition information, visit or call 5-1-1.

Friday, May 25, 2012

NDSU BBQ Boot Camps Coming

North Dakota State University's BBQ Boot Camp is back for the 2012 grilling season.

The camp:

* Introduces participants to basic grilling styles, including gas, charcoal and smokers

* Offers information about different rubs, marinades and seasonings to use on meat

* Explains why cooking temperatures are important and how the temperature affects the quality of the meat

* Teaches food safety tips and nutritional facts on meat

* Informs participants about current topics in the meat and food industry and the importance of understanding the world food supply

* Gives participants a chance to sample different types of barbecued meat and provides ideas for their next neighborhood barbecue

The NDSU Animal Sciences Department hosts the camp in conjunction with NDSU Extension Service faculty.

Four camps are scheduled throughout the state this summer. The camp dates, locations and people to contact for more information or to register are:

* June 20 - Fargo, Megan Kortie, (701) 231-7641

* June 28 - Williston, Mary Froelich, (701) 577-4595

* July 16 - Bismarck, Cathy Palczewski, (701) 221-6865

* July 18 - Minot, Paige Brummond, (701) 857-6444

Registration also is available online at!3A!2F!!2Fbbqbootcamp.

This is the fourth year of the BBQ Boot Camp program.

"BBQ Boot Camp is a unique opportunity to combine great food, great people and our program message on the critical role agriculture plays in all our lives," says David Newman, NDSU Extension swine specialist. "We plan to hold the camp in even more communities across the state next year."
NDSU Agriculture Communication - May 25, 2012

BBB advice on what to do if a company closes suddenly

Burnsville, Minnesota – May 25, 2012 – As a result of challenging economic conditions in recent years, the number of retailers closing their doors – often without notice – has increased, leaving customers confused and wondering what will happen to purchases they’ve paid for but haven’t received. The same applies in situations where warranties or unused gift cards are involved. The Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota (BBB) provides advice for consumers regarding steps they can take if a retailer goes out of business but doesn’t officially file bankruptcy, as well as what their options are when companies do file Chapter 7 or Chapter 11 bankruptcies.
If a Company Closes, But Hasn’t Officially Filed Bankruptcy
First, send the company a letter because their mail may still be forwarded. Physically go to their locati on to see if they left a message on the door for customers. Ask neighboring businesses if they have any information. Try to reach the owner. If you have merchandise in the store, contact the landlord to see if you can be given access to the company’s facility. As a last resort, contact law enforcement.
The validity of any outstanding warranties varies depending on the facts. If a retailer goes out of business, the consumer may be able to rely on the manufacturer’s warranty. If a manufacturer goes out of business, the consumer may be able to rely on a retailer warranty. Many extended warranties and service plans are provided and administered by third parties and are typically not affected by a retailer or manufacturer closing its doors.
Chapter 7 Bankruptcies
Under Chapter 7 bankruptcy law, the money gained from selling the company’s assets goes first to back taxes, secured creditors and employees. That usually depletes available assets. If any assets are left over, they are divided among unsecured creditors, including customers who didn’t receive services or goods already paid for.
Customers who paid with credit cards may be able to dispute the charge with their credit card company to get their money back. Others who paid by debit, check or cash, will need to file a claim with the bankruptcy court administering the process. A creditor must file a proof of claim within 90 days after the first date set for the meeting of creditors. Visit for more information.
Chapter 11 Bankruptcie s
A Chapter 11 bankruptcy allows the company to continue operations while it reorganizes for future stability. If a company files for Chapter 11 protection, they will often still redeem gift cards, fulfill services and deliver on goods. Unfortunately, some Chapter 11 bankruptcies are unsuccessful and convert into Chapter 7, which leads to closure and complete liquidation. At that point, the chances for the consumer to receive any compensation are greatly diminished.
Unused Gift Cards
Under Chapter 7 bankruptcy law, the gift card holder must file a claim through the courts. Under Chapter 11 bankruptcy law, courts will decide if the business must honor gift cards. To avoid problems, the BBB advises that consumers redeem gift cards as soon as possible.
Customers in these situations can also file complaints with the BBB ( and/or the FTC at Depending upon the amount of the claim, small claims court is also an option.

The mission of the Better Business Bureau is to be the leader in building marketplace trust by promoting, through self-regulation, the highest standards of business ethics and conduct, and to instill confidence in responsible businesses through programs of education and action that inform, assist and protect the general public. Our hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Contact the BBB at or 651-699-1111, toll-free at 1-800-646-6222. Visit our Centennial website at

MnDOT urges travelers to use caution in work zones during Memorial Day weekend

ST. PAUL, Minn. — As Memorial Day weekend approaches and summer construction roadwork around the state revs up, the Minnesota Department of Transportation urges motorists to use extra caution while driving through highway work zones.

By visiting or calling 5-1-1, motorists can plan their trips with the latest statewide traffic, construction, weather and travel information.

While the department will suspend work on many projects during the long weekend, motorists may still encounter detours and traffic restrictions as well as rough road surfaces and narrowed traffic lanes on heavily traveled routes, including:
Twin Cities Metro area

Interstate 35E – between County Road 96 in White Bear Lake and the I-35E/I-35W split in Columbus
Eastbound Highway 10 – between County Road 96 and I-694 in Arden Hills
I-694 – at Snelling Avenue in Arden Hills

Greater Minnesota
·         I-35 – Sandstone to Duluth
·         Highway 1 – South of Ely
·         Highway 113 – Highway 59 to Mahnomen County Road 4
·         Highway 10 – Big Lake to Clear Lake
·         Highway 23 – East of St. Cloud closed to Foley
·         I-94 – at Albertville
·         Highway 27 – Isle to Woodland

Highway 43 – Bratsberg to County Road 12 in Fillmore County
Highway 14 – Olmsted and Dodge counties between Byron and Kasson

Memorial Day weekend is traditionally one of the deadliest on Minnesota roads during the spring and summer months. Safe driving during the long weekend ranks as a paramount concern for the departments of Transportation and Public Safety and law enforcement agencies statewide.

In 2011, there were 1,796 crashes that resulted in eight deaths and 741 injuries in Minnesota state highway work zones alone, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

MnDOT encourages motorists to follow these recommendations while driving, and especially when encountering work zones:
·         Use safety belts
·         Drive sober
·         Stay alert
·         Watch for signs and work zone flaggers
·         Minimize distractions such as using cell phones, eating or drinking
·         Avoid tailgating
·         Follow posted speed limits -- Fines double in work zones
·         Stay in one lane while driving through a work zone

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

BBB Tips for Avoiding Rental Property Scams

Burnsville, MinnesotaMay 22, 2012 – Where do you turn if you’re in the market for a new place to live? A lot of people go online to find affordable rental properties. But before beginning your search, the Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota (BBB) is warning people that there are many unscrupulous individuals using Craigslist and other websites – posing as landlords or rental agents – to scam you or steal your personal and financial information. 

“The number of rental property scams online continues to grow,” says Dana Badgerow, President and CEO of the BBB. “The names of the fictitious “property owners” may change, but the methods are always the same: attractive-looking properties are offered at low or unbelievable prices; consumers wire money for security deposits or the first month’s rent and then quickly discover they’ve been defrauded.”

Ads like these are not limited to Craigslist, and the online thieves behind them – many of whom are based overseas – are out to swipe your money and your identity.

The BBB provides the following tips for avoiding online rental property scams:
* Be leery of deals that sound too good to be true. Scammers will often list a rental at a very low price to lure in victims. Do some shopping around to find out how comparable listings are priced. If the rental comes in suspiciously low, walk away.
* Never wire money at the request of any prospective “landlord” via Western Union, Money Gram or any other wire service. 
* Never send a scan of your passport or any other ID.  Online thieves will use your identity to scam others. Ask to see the landlord's ID - record all the information you can from it.
* Do an Internet search of the person's name you're supposedly dealing with. You could add the words "fraud" or "scam" at the end of your search terms.
* If the ad or posting is full of spelling errors and grammatical errors, be aware there’s a good chance you’re dealing with an overseas scammer.
* Always ask to inspect the property – inside and out. In many rental scams, the “landlords” prefer to communicate via email, claiming to be out of the country and unable to show the rental property. This is usually a huge red flag.
* Consider using a real estate agent or a rental agency to find the property that’s right for you. Check them out first at

The mission of the Better Business Bureau is to be the leader in building marketplace trust by promoting, through self-regulation, the highest standards of business ethics and conduct, and to instill confidence in responsible businesses through programs of education and action that inform, assist and protect the general public. Our hours of operation are 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Contact the BBB at or 651-699-1111, toll-free at 1-800-646-6222.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Mississippi River Trail receives state bikeway designation

ST. PAUL, Minn. — The Mississippi River Trail bicycle route received state and national recognition when state legislators designated the trail as Minnesota’s first state bikeway during the 2012 session and federal officials today announced approval of U.S. Bicycle Route 45 in southeastern Minnesota.

The MRT connects existing shouldered highways, low-use roads and off-road paths for bicyclists and closely follows the Mississippi River from the headwaters at Itasca State Park to the Iowa border. 

“The Mississippi River Trail—now also USBR 45—is a unique collaboration among local and state road and trail authorities,” said Tim Mitchell, Minnesota Department of Transportation bicycle and pedestrian coordinator. “Partners are rebranding their existing roads and trails to create a long-distance bicycle route of state and national significance with a small investment.”

In Minnesota, USBR 45 extends 148 miles from just south of the Twin Cities Metro area in Hastings to the Iowa border. Also known as the Mississippi Bluffs segment of the MRT, this route is the first USBR in Minnesota and is one segment of a proposed national network of bicycle routes, knows as the U.S. Bicycle Route System. MnDOT has future plans to designate the entire MRT route in Minnesota as part of USBR 45.

Once complete, USBR 45 will continue south along the Mississippi River to New Orleans. In the future, the U.S. Bicycle Route System will encompass more than 50,000 miles of routes. Visit to view the Corridor Plan map of the proposed national network.

“Formal recognition of the MRT as a state bikeway from the Minnesota Legislature demonstrates a long-term commitment to bicycling,” Mitchell said. “This step will help us continue developing bicycle-friendly roads and communities for both new and experienced bicyclists.”    

Minnesota is the first of 10 Mississippi River states to seek legislation to formalize their portion of the national route within its boundary. The MRT extends to the Gulf of Mexico.

Trail authorities are planning additional improvements to the MRT in Minnesota, including increased signage.

For more information about the Mississippi River Trail in Minnesota, including printable and electronic maps, visit

The U.S. Bicycle Route System project is spearheaded by the American Association of Highway and Transportation Officials’ Special Committee on U.S. Route Numbering. The project involves officials and staff from state DOTs, the Federal Highway Administration and nonprofit organizations such as Adventure Cycling Association, the East Coast Greenway Alliance and Mississippi River Trail Inc

Fred E. Wood named chancellor of UMC

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (05/21/2012) —Fred E. Wood has been named chancellor of the University of Minnesota’s campus in Crookston. He will begin the position July 2, 2012, pending approval by the university’s Board of Regents.

Wood comes to the University of Minnesota from the University of California, Davis, where he has been vice chancellor of student affairs and has held other leadership roles for 26 years.

As UMC chancellor, Wood will be the chief academic and executive officer for the Crookston campus, responsible for leveraging its unique strengths in undergraduate education, applied research and public engagement within the broader mission of the University of Minnesota.
One of five U of M campuses, UMC is a public baccalaureate institution in Northwestern Minnesota enrolling 1,600 students.
A first-generation college student, Wood earned a B.S. in chemistry in 1980 and a Ph.D. in inorganic chemistry in 1984, both from UC Davis, a public land-grant research university within the University of California system. He spent two years as a tenured faculty member at a small community college in northern Idaho before returning to UC Davis in 1986 as vice chair of its chemistry department, responsible for coordinating curricular and co-curricular experiences for undergraduate and graduate students.
From 1991 to 2004 he was associate dean of the UC Davis College of Letters and Science. In 2004, he was named interim vice provost for undergraduate studies, a position he held until becoming vice chancellor of student affairs in 2007.

“The University of Minnesota, Crookston, is an innovative campus with distinctive strengths in student-centered education, technology-rich learning and applied research,” said Wood. “I look forward to joining the Crookston community and to continuing to advance the excellence of UMC and the entire University of Minnesota system.”

“Fred brings outstanding administrative and academic credentials, a passion for ensuring innovative and supportive educational experiences, and a strong understanding of a multi-campus system with a land-grant mission,” said Robert J. Jones, the university system senior vice president for academic administration. “President Kaler and I believe that Fred will be an outstanding addition to the University of Minnesota leadership team and will bring a strong vision that will continue to chart a course for excellence for our Crookston campus.”

Integral to the University's land-grant mission, UMC connects its teaching, research and outreach to serve Northwestern Minnesota while delivering 26 degree programs, including 10 online degrees, in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.
Wood, who was recommended by a systemwide search committee, succeeds Charles H. Casey, who is retiring after seven years as UMC chancellor and 26 years in other top University leadership roles

Friday, May 18, 2012

Highway 59 at Plummer opens to traffic

BEMIDJI, Minn. – The Minnesota Department of Transportation has re-opened Highway 59 and removed the detour at Plummer after crews completed their work to repair the highway.

Highway 59 at Plummer had been closed since March 31 when a semitrailer and train collided at the highway crossing, spilling hazardous material.

MnDOT would like to thank the public for their patience during this unfortunate incident.

For updated road conditions and construction around the state, call 5-1-1 or click on

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Rep. Peterson will host series of farm bill update meetings

(Detroit Lakes, Minn) -  Rep. Collin Peterson will be hosting a series of farm meetings next week throughout western Minnesota.  Peterson will provide an update on the Farm Bill reauthorization process.

Monday, May 21

Crookston, 10 a.m. at Youngquist Auditorium on the east side of UMC campus, 2900 University Avenue.

Hallock, 2 p.m. at the Younggren Farms Shop located four miles north of Hallock on Hwy. 175 and then one mile west.

Thursday, May 24

Fergus Falls, 10 a.m. at the Otter Tail Power Community Rooms, 216 S Cascade St.

Melrose, 2 p.m. at Melrose City Center, Meeting Room C, 225 1st. St. NE

Friday, May 25

Pipestone, 11 a.m. at Pipestone County Courthouse community room 416 Hiawatha Ave. S. (hosted by Congressman Tim Walz)

Olivia, 3 p.m. at Max's Grill, 2425 W Lincoln Ave.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012


FARGO, N.D. (May 17, 2012) — Each year, more than 5 million people learn lifesaving skills in American Red Cross training classes and people in the Fargo-Moorhead area, can join the ranks of these everyday heroes by taking a class now.

The First Aid and CPR/AED course teaches people how to perform CPR and use an AED, what to do if someone is choking, and how to prevent and respond to other emergencies until advanced medical help arrives. Course participants also learn how to control bleeding as well as how to care for seizures and other sudden illnesses, as well as will be offered for specialization in pediatric lifesaving skills.

The Babysitter’s Training course will give 11-15 year-olds the skills and confidence to safely and responsibly care for children and infants, as well as some tools to help them get started in their own babysitting business.

Caregiving skills take prospective young sitters from feeding to diapering and playtime to bedtime routines. Participants also learn how to handle emergencies such as injuries, illnesses and household accidents.

Red Cross training courses meet OSHA guidelines, feature hands-on skills practice and include 2 year certifications, free digital materials and skill refreshers. Visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS for details and to register for a class.

Courses are subject to cancellation without notification. Advance registration is required.
         Minn-Kota Chapter – 2602 12th Street North, Fargo, ND 58102        

First Aid Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
Pediatric CPR/AED Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
Minn-Kota Chapter
Babysitter’s Training
Minn-Kota Chapter
First Aid Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
Adult CPR/AED Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
First Aid Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
Pediatric CPR/AED Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
First Aid Review
Minn-Kota Chapter
Minn-Kota Chapter
First Aid
Minn-Kota Chapter
Minn-Kota Chapter
First Aid
Minn-Kota Chapter

Monday, May 14, 2012

Permanent pavement markings on Highway 197/71 begins Tuesday, May 15

BEMIDJI, Minn. – Motorists in the Bemidji area will encounter some minor delays as crews install the final ground-in pavement markings on Highway 197 and Highway 71 from Carr Lake Road south to County Road 2. 

The work begins Tuesday, May 15, and is expected to be completed May 22.

The permanent pavement markings were delayed because of last year’s state government shutdown.

Motorists are advised to be alert for slow moving equipment and possible lane closures.

For updated road conditions and construction around the state, call 5-1-1 or click on

Traveling Art Exhibit to Visit Ten Libraries

A Traveling Art Show will be bringing artwork by seven regional artists to ten local libraries throughout northwest Minnesota in the coming months. Artwork from the 13th annual Regional Art Exhibit sponsored by the Northwest Minnesota Arts Council was selected for the tour. This year‘s regional exhibit took place in Kennedy, MN from April 26th to May 6, 2012.

The traveling exhibit consists of varied artworks, from watercolors to photographs, and includes a woodcut and a mixed-media item. Each artist offers a completely unique perspective. Photographer Bert Foster describes his entry, Warm Reflections: “I was struck by the kaleidoscope of colors, shapes and textures I saw in a pool of thawing ice.”   

Artists whose work may be viewed in the traveling exhibit include Annethea Novacek, Pat Ledin Dunning, Marge Anderson, Loren Younggren, Loreen Hanson, Bert Foster, and Paulette Christianson. Loren Young gren is a Merit Award winner in this year’s Regional Exhibit, and also shares the People’s Choice award.

Beginning in Fosston on May 17th the exhibit will travel to nine more northwest Minnesota libraries during the following six months, ending its trip in Warren in December.

Fosston Public Library            May 17 - June 5
Greenbush Public Library       June 7 – June 26
Hallock Public Library             June 28 – July 17
Roseau Public Library            July 19 – Aug 7
Crookston Public Library        Augt 9 – Aug 28
Red Lake Public Library         Aug 30 – Sept 25
Thief River Falls P.L.              Sept 27 – Oct 16
Climax Library                        Oct 18 – Nov 6
Ada Library                             Nov 8 – Nov 27
Warren Public Library             Nov 29 – Dec 18

The Northwest Minnesota Arts Council serves the seven cou nties of Kittson, Marshall, Norman, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, and Roseau. The annual art exhibit is sponsored with funds from the McKnight Foundation and from the Minnesota State Legislature.