Articles written by ann markusen

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 By Ann Markusen    Culture    April 8, 2022

On The Mark: Portraits with a camera

Ivy Vainio's large-scale photo prints of Anishinaabe elders grace our multicolored brick wall at the Pine Knot News office, a striking introduction to a portrait exhibit which opens today, April 8,... Full story

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    April 1, 2022

On The Mark: Invasion thwarts democracy

Russia’s current invasion of Ukraine, a peaceful independent nation, can only be explained by revisiting late 20th-century history. I am rusty on much of this, so I’ve spent some time reviewing the... Full story


On The Mark: Song and comedy brighten winter days in Cromwell

For two weeks in a row, classmates, parents, grandparents, siblings, and community members were treated to marvelous song — alone and with others — and a sparkling One Act Play at the Cro...


On The Mark: Racism: a persistent American crisis

You may have heard that some school boards and communities in our state are fighting over the oddly named “critical race theory.” Oddly, because if you read what some of the theory’s prota... Full story


On The Mark: Stay politically engaged

Lately, I’ve been reading about American political history since World War II. Prominent topics include the civil rights movement, the Congress of American Indians (founded in 1944), the women’s mov... Full story


On The Mark: Music and dancing bring joy to center

Last week, residents of Cromwell's Cardinal Court and Villa Vista care complex were treated to the rousing music of Florian Chmielewski's accordion and his banter between numbers. Lots of laughter,...


On The Mark: Ski programs grow strong at Cloquet's Pine Valley

It was a cold, cold day - even at 1 p.m. - minus 8 degrees with modest winds. The chalet at Pine Valley was crowded with kids and parents. The Cloquet Ski Club's Jenny Barta ably led us through the... Full story


On The Mark: Enjoying a musical challenge

On Monday evening last week, the Cromwell-Wright School gym hosted choral and instrumental performances of young people of all ages. The bleachers on the gym's south side were crammed with parents,...


On The Mark: Economic development thrives in Carlton County

Carlton County workers and businesses are receiving economic development support through funds provided by the State of Minnesota’s Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED). R...


Photographers deck the walls at Pine Knot

The Knot Gallery's current exhibit features two area photographers whose subjects are all "out of doors." Colorful and majestic framed landscapes by retired Raiter Clinic physician Dan Malkovich hang...


On The Mark: A reflection on small towns and urban neighborhoods

After 12 years of living full-time in Red Clover Township, I’m beginning to understand the power of local ties and community. Growing up in an inner-ring Minneapolis suburb, we lived in a house cheek-... Full story


Making beautiful music

Senior high choir and band members sang and played their hearts out to an enthralled audience Nov. 9 in the Cromwell-Wright auditorium. The full senior high choir kicked off with Walter Rodby's... Full story


On The Mark: Rural counties win in recruiting workers

Some years ago, I reported on the success of Carlton and Aitkin counties in attracting new residents. University of Minnesota researchers found that for the period 2000-2010, these two counties...


On The Mark: Workforce takes a hit from lingering pandemic

It’s been a tough year for most of us. We lost many people, especially among our elderly populations. Many workers lost their jobs. Others had to show up, especially those in our health care c...


On The Mark: Hospital navigates Covid storm

Among area enterprises propelled into the Covid hotseat, Community Memorial Hospital must be our local ground zero. Demand for its care and services skyrocketed from the start, peaking in winter...


On The Mark: Reports provide snapshot of local economy

Northeastern Minnesota failed to match the state’s population growth rate (6.3 percent) from 2010 to 2019. The Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED), using estimates from the U...


On The Mark: Movies return to the barn

On the evenings of Aug. 20-21, the Dugan and Fisher- Merritt clan will again host the Free Range Film Festival at their heritage barn in Wrenshall. Screening the films ahead of time, I’ve marveled and...

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    July 30, 2021

On The Mark: Bright power bill days ahead

After thinking about it for months, my husband, Rod, and I decided to install solar power at our home. Rod researched the options. We chose to go with a small company, Wolf Track Energy of Duluth,...

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    July 2, 2021

On The Mark: It's good to have grad parties back

I have thoroughly enjoyed the half-dozen grad parties I attended the last few weeks. It's always sweet to see how the featured grad beams at you and answers your "what's next?" questions. And I love...

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    June 25, 2021

On the Mark: Pine Valley master plan has input opportunities

What would you like to see in an upgrade of Cloquet's Pine Valley recreation area? The city of Cloquet recently hired a team of consultants to consider options and survey the public on our...


Art is back on Avenue C

Early this morning, a ruby- throated hummingbird scouted our bird feeders, then departed for sweeter options. I poured sugar into a quart jar, added water and shook, retrieved and filled the feeders... Full story

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    May 21, 2021

On The Mark: Cromwell-Wright held fast to in-person learning

Reflecting earlier this month, Cromwell-Wright principal and superintendent Nathan Libbon recounted how he and his teachers, staff, parents and school board members managed to host most of their K-12...

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    May 7, 2021

On The Mark: Counterpoint: Yes, raise the minimum wage

Even newspaper owners don’t always agree, and that’s OK. This week I’d like to examine the other side of the argument for raising the minimum wage, in response to my fellow Pine Knot board member Pete...

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    April 30, 2021

On The Mark: 'April is the cruelest month'

T. S. Eliot begins his "The Burial of the Dead," the first section of his poem, "The Waste Land," with this: April is the cruellest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and... Full story

 By Ann Markusen    Opinion    April 23, 2021

On The Mark: Staying in touch with godchildren is a joy

Do you have godchildren? It was customary when my husband and I were born, mid-twentieth century, to acquire them. Having godchildren and keeping in touch can be so much fun, a form of extended...


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