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Articles from the January 22, 2021 edition


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  • There's a space crunch at the fire hall

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    The motto of the Cloquet Area Fire District when it concerns the state legislature could be phrased this way: "If at first you don't succeed, try, try, try, try, try again." For at least the fifth time since the district was formed by legislative action in 2009, the fire district is making a request of the state legislature. This time it's for a new building as it has outgrown its current home. In the past, requests have ranged from fixing mistakes made by the legislature when it formed the fire... Full story

  • Husband, wife die hours apart in virus fight

    Mike Creger|Jan 22, 2021

    "You're grounded." That's what Judy Proulx told her 60-something son last week when the thermometer he had purchased for her went on the blink. The impish gesture defined Jim Proulx's mother. "I'm grounded for life," Jim said. He delivered a wistful laugh Wednesday because that joking exchange became the last between the mother and son. Judy died on Jan. 11. A few hours later, her husband since 1959, Jim, also died. "Romantic?" son Jim wondered from his winter home in Yuma, Arizona, where his... Full story

  • Carlton postmaster loves to deliver

    Timothy Soden-Groves|Jan 22, 2021

    Over the past several years, customers walking into the Cloquet or Carlton post offices have been greeted by a familiar face backed up with a helpful, can-do attitude. The guy who seems to be at the front window of every local post office is Philip Birkhofer, who now runs a one-man operation in Carlton. Birkhofer started his career in Cloquet seven years ago, then shifted to Carlton before going back to Cloquet for about five years. He was the head clerk there, "kind of running the front...

  • Cloquet man faces sex crime charges

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    A Cloquet man was charged with first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct stemming from an arrest warrant issued in November, after a young woman reported he allegedly assaulted her last spring, when both he and the victim were living with her guardian. Timothy Scott Young Jr., 38, had his first hearing in Sixth District Carlton County Court on Jan. 13. He is charged with criminal sexual conduct, first degree, penetration with a victim under the age of 16, and second-degree criminal sexual conduct, significant relationship with a victim...

  • Police seize 2.2 pounds of cocaine

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    With assistance from several law enforcement agencies, Cloquet police department detectives seized 2.2 pounds of cocaine with a street value of nearly $30,000 last week. Misty Anne Baum, 40, of Duluth, was charged with first degree possession of drugs for the cocaine possession, along with fifth- degree drug possession and introducing contraband into jail. According to the criminal complaint, the Drug Enforcement Agency contacted Cloquet detectives on Jan. 12, after local agents located a package containing nearly 1 kilogram of cocaine...

  • All students return to classrooms

    Lois E. Johnson|Jan 22, 2021

    Students went back to the Barnum elementary and high schools Tuesday, Jan. 19. “It was great to hear their voices in the halls again,” said Barnum superintendent Mike McNulty in a telephone interview later that day. “I hope that lasts a long time.” The elementary students have returned to school five days a week, while the high school students attend school four days a week. They participate in distance learning on Wednesdays, explained McNulty. “Wednesday is a day for the teachers to do preparation work,” said McNulty. “We don’t have th...

  • Elementary students are first back in Esko

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    Esko elementary students returned to school in-person on Tuesday and it was fabulous, Esko superintendent Aaron Fischer told Esko School Board members during their meeting Tuesday. “Quite honestly, I walked around and I couldn’t believe all the smiles from the teachers and staff and the kids,” he said. “It felt really good to be here today; there was just a different vibe in the air.” Pre-K students through sixth grade returned to Winterquist Elementary this week, while students in grades 7-12 continued with distance learning for one more week...

  • Tax filing season starts Feb. 12

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    The Minnesota Department of Revenue will open the state Individual Income Tax filing season on Feb. 12. The date matches the opening day for the Internal Revenue Service. The filing deadline to submit 2020 Minnesota income tax returns is April 15, the same deadline for 2020 federal income tax returns. Tax software providers and tax professionals may be accepting and preparing tax returns before Feb. 12 and will submit those returns when the IRS and state systems open in February. “Filing electronically and choosing direct deposit for your r...

  • Arrest made at Line 3 pipeline site

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    Water protector Nia Zekan climbed into a pipe trench along the Line 3 pipeline easement on the Fond du Lac reservation Monday morning, shutting down work for approximately four hours. Zekan halted construction at this Enbridge worksite while "dozens more people stood around in support of Nia and resistance to Line 3," according to a press release from the Line 3 Media Collective. "I want to protect this beautiful land and all its wisdom. I want to stand with the people who have been learning... Full story

  • Smoke shop hit hard after sale to minor

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    What seemed like a routine retail tobacco license suspension turned into lengthy discussion during Tuesday's Cloquet City Council meeting, but the end result was the same. Lakeshore Tobacco Vapor was fined $200 and its retail tobacco license suspended for 10 days, after the local smoke shop sold a tobacco product to a minor - who had been engaged by police for its twice-a-year compliance checks - for the second time in two years. The fine and suspension are detailed in the city code, but the...

  • Report says Minnesota's air quality is good - but not for everyone

    MPR News|Jan 22, 2021

    A report out this month says Minnesota’s air quality is good overall, but isn’t the same in all parts of the state. The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency is required to report to the Legislature every two years on how clean the state’s air is. The most recent report, sent to the Legislature on Jan. 1, says Minnesota is meeting federal standards for air pollution. But it also says people in some areas experience pollution levels high enough to affect the health of children, the elderly and those with underlying health conditions. “In areas t...

  • Mayor remains optimistic despite tough year

    Ann Markusen|Jan 22, 2021

    A difficult pandemic year did not spare the city of Cromwell. As mayor Sharon Zelazny said, “When it came to challenges and achievements, the challenges definitely won out.” Zelazny said the city council and staff made the Covid-19 pandemic the top priority. Every employee had to adopt their job description to include pandemic preparedness and adapt their responsibilities accordingly, she said. “Our municipal liquor store required everyone’s help to keep up with the necessary changes. I felt it...

  • Downward trend continues locally, in state

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    Carlton County Covid-19 case numbers increased by 46 cases over the past week, while only one death due to Covid was reported in the county. As of Wednesday, Jan. 13, Carlton County had seen a cumulative total of 2,809 Covid-19 cases and 43 deaths, according to the most recent numbers from the Minnesota Department of Health. Also Wednesday, the Fond du Lac Band of Lake Superior Chippewa reported a total of 195 positive tests so far — an increase of six since last week — with 92 of those on the reservation, also an increase of one. Jan... Full story

  • On your pets: Covid in pets has become a thing

    Jennifer Shepherd|Jan 22, 2021

    In March I wrote a column about Covid and our pets. We have learned a lot about Covid-19 in the past nine months and some of the guidance has since changed. Here is what we know now. Over the past few months, some domestic animals, including dogs, cats, ferrets, and mink have tested positive for Covid-19. There have also been reports of lions and tigers in zoos becoming sick with Covid. However, despite millions of people testing positive for Covid and becoming ill, very few pets have tested positive and developed respiratory signs. As of... Full story

  • Our view: Back-to-school is welcome any time

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    We are not weather forecasters, but we predict a warmup next week, due to parents all around the county breathing a big sigh of relief when their children finally go back to school. Most Carlton County schools announced a return to the classroom for students, following months of distance learning to prevent the spread of coronavirus. While students started the school year in the classrooms, cases of Covid-19 rose quickly in October and November, alarming the governor, who imposed the distance learning requirement by executive order. Since...

  • Harry's Gang: I'm missing watching history parade by in Washington, D.C.

    Pete Radosevich|Jan 22, 2021

    I was supposed to be in Washington this week, but I canceled my plane tickets in early December. We had been planning to attend the inauguration, taking advantage of Martin Luther King Jr. Day to reduce the number of missed school days for the kids, and had booked an Airbnb for the week, where the kids could distance-learn while in Washington. But when we learned that Joe Biden was allowing only a very select few to attend the event due to the coronavirus, we realized we would never get into... Full story

  • Obituaries: Carol A. Schlenvogt

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    Carol A. Schlenvogt, 71, of Cloquet passed away Jan. 13, 2021, at her home with family at her side. She was born Aug. 6, 1949 in Jamestown, North Dakota, the daughter of Reinhart and Evanda (Stuckle) Lange. Carol graduated from Sykeston High School in 1967 and worked at the North Dakota State University bookstore, where she met William Schlenvogt. They were married on March 2, 1973, in Fargo and moved to Cloquet in 1976. She was a member of Our Savior's Lutheran Church where she served as a... Full story

  • Obituaries: Diane M. Krych

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    Diane M. Krych, 68, of Esko and Stone Lake, Wisconsin, went to her heavenly home to be with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Monday, Jan. 18, 2021, after a lengthy and courageous battle with cancer. Diane was born in Minneapolis on March 24, 1952 to Robert and June Rittenhouse. She graduated from Richfield High School in 1970 and graduated from Southwest State University in Marshall, Minnesota in 1974. She met her husband, Dean, in an elevator at the J.C. Penney store at the Southdale Mall... Full story

  • Obituaries: Jim and Judy Proulx

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    James (Jim), 82, and Judy, 81, of Cloquet passed away after 62 years of marriage, within hours of each other in their winter home of Yuma, Arizona on Jan. 11, 2021. Lifelong residents of Cloquet, Jim, born on June 12, 1938 and Judy, born on May 18, 1939, started dating in ninth-grade (Class of 1957), and were married on Nov. 21 of 1959. Jim was a former member of the National Guard, drove Bus No. 5 for more than 35 years for Cloquet Transit and was a head custodian for the Cloquet school... Full story

  • Death notices

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    Norman Lee Rubesh, 77, of Cloquet passed away suddenly Friday, Jan. 8, 2021, in Community Memorial Hospital in Cloquet. A gathering of family and friends was held Jan. 16 in the Atkins Northland Funeral Home, 801 14th St. in Cloquet. Charles Golen, 91, of Cloquet, died on Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021, at St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth. No public service will be held. A Celebration of Life will be held at a future date at the cabin. To leave an online condolence, visit the guestbook at www.nelson funeralcare.net.... Full story

  • Get on the beaten snowshoe path

    Ruth Reeves|Jan 22, 2021

    Minnesotans know of many ways to enjoy the snow. They eat it, throw it, build with it, slide on it and jump into it. A favorite way that my outdoor companion Keith and I enjoy the frozen precipitation is to strap snowshoes to our boots and walk on it. Snowshoeing can be an affordable and spontaneous outdoor activity that allows you to explore areas with deep snow by "floating" on top. As many parents and teachers know, a great way to play outside and introduce a fun physics lesson to kids is by... Full story

  • 'Uncommon' moose roams area

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    It appears there's a male moose loose in the city of Cloquet, or rather the woods surrounding it. Earlier this month, a handful of residents spotted the large antlered animal not far from Armory Road in Cloquet and shared their stories on Facebook. On Friday, the moose posed for a few photos on a trail cam south of Pine Valley. The owner of the trail cam shared the photos - and at least one past moose story - with the Pine Knot News, but declined to be identified because she doesn't want people... Full story

  • Boundary waters crush brings changes

    MPR News|Jan 22, 2021

    After a surge of visitors brought an increase in litter and damage to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness last year, officials are taking steps to head off similar problems this year. The Superior National Forest in northern Minnesota announced Friday that because of the pandemic, it once again will offer alternatives to issuing wilderness permits in-person. But in a change from last year, it’ll require people acquiring their permit online to watch three leave-no-trace education videos and review BWCAW rules before they receive their p... Full story

  • Wrestlers rebuild in age of Covid

    Jana Peterson|Jan 22, 2021

    In a sport that requires true grit, the Lumberjacks wrestling team faces two additional challenges this year: numbers and Covid-19. They lost five seniors to graduation last year, and another four teammates to Covid concerns. They returned 11 potential varsity wrestlers, and another four who wrestle junior high. There are 14 weight classes, from 106 pounds to 285. "We can only fill six of those this year," head coach Al Denman said. "We have a number of athletes who weigh pretty much the same,... Full story

  • The Ticker: A quick look at area teams in action

    Pine Knot News|Jan 22, 2021

    Thursday, Jan. 14 Boys Hockey Grand Rapids-6 CEC-1 Boys Basketball Northwoods-110 Carlton-46 Girls Basketball Moose Lake/ Willow River-83 Aitkin-66 Carlton-59 McGregor-31 MIB-77 Cloquet-47 Cromwell-Wright-66 South Ridge-39 Friday, Jan. 15 Boys Hockey Duluth East-2 CEC-1 Boys Basketball Moose Lake/ Willow River-112 Silver Bay-27 South Ridge-66 Cromwell-Wright-39 Saturday, Jan. 16 Boys Hockey Duluth East-2 CEC-1 Ashland-4 Moose Lake Area-1 Boys Basketball Cloquet-90 Hermantown-73 Pine City-81 Esko-71 Monday, Jan. 18 Boys Basketball Duluth... Full story

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