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Articles from the May 6, 2022 edition


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  • Mural magic at middle school

    Jana Peterson|May 6, 2022

    While gray days dominated the month of April outside, art students at Cloquet Middle School were creating a scene of spectacular color and warmth inside a second floor hallway. Their new mural measures 9 feet high and 30 feet long, and features two young people working in a garden, lots of flowers, bees, and butterflies. Like a garden, the mural wasn't created overnight. First, the students learned about bees and pollinators from the NE Minnesota Beekeepers Association, then about food...

  • Dan Kraker-MPR News|May 6, 2022

    On the first day of a first-of-its-kind public hearing this week on the fate of a key permit for the proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recommended against reissuing the permit, saying the project risked increasing levels of mercury and other pollutants in the St. Louis River downstream from the proposed mine. While only a recommendation, it could deal a potentially severe blow to the controversial $1 billion mine proposed near the northeastern...  Website

  • History Mystery

    May 6, 2022

    Dennis Nelson brought in this photo of his maternal grandfather (back row, third from right) taken in the early 1900s. He figures it's a group of lumberjacks who went to the photography studio, where they borrowed suits for the occasion, but he's not sure. Nelson knows the identity of only two of the people pictured: his grandfather, Louis Flesvik Johnson, and his grandfather's brother, name unknown, who is pictured in the back row, first on the left. "He (LFJ) came here in 1903 from Norway. He...

  • Covid cases trending up, but less severe

    Pine Knot News|May 6, 2022

    Covid-19 case counts are trending up in the state and region after a month of respite. Hospitalizations are also on the rise, but the cases seen are less severe, said Rick Breuer, CEO of Cloquet’s Community Memorial Hospital. More people are being treated at clinics or at home, Breuer said. It’s a milder wave of Covid that people have been looking for. “It can be heresy to talk about Covid like the flu,” Breuer said. “It’s not to minimize it, but that’s what we have hoped for.” The problem with any Covid case these days, he said, is that i...

  • Team effort yields state Econ title

    Jana Peterson|May 6, 2022

    Prior to winning the state championship last Wednesday, April 27, members of the Cloquet High School Econ Team ran past cheering crowds in the hallways of the high school ... dressed in two-piece suits and carrying giant binders filled with study guides. The school did everything it normally does for a sports team bound for state, even providing a police escort (school officer Elijah Haglund, who jogged down the hallways behind them). Then the team got down to business, pulling up chairs around...

  • Southgate Pizza to close

    May 6, 2022

    Southgate Pizza owner Sandra Lee said she is closing the popular pizzeria later this month, after operating it since July 2019. The last day will be May 14. Southgate is located next to Anytime Fitness in the Premiere Theatres mall at 918 Highway 33 South in Cloquet. “It’s probably the hardest decision I’ve ever made,” Less said. “We had enough community support and we made it through Covid, so it’s not that. It basically comes down to my health.” Lee also cited difficulty finding staff and increased product and lease costs as consideration...

  • Free kids vaccine clinic

    May 6, 2022

    Many children have some catching up to do with vaccines. To help with that, Carlton County Public Health will hold a free vaccine clinic for kids ages 11-18 from 3:30 to 4:45 p.m. May 10 at the Carlton County Community Services Building, 14 North 11th Street. There is no charge. Insurance information will be collected and insurance billed if possible, but there is no charge if the child is uninsured. Available vaccines will include Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis), meningococcal conjugate, HPV (human papillomavirus), Covid-19 and...

  • FDLTCC graduation

    May 6, 2022

    Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College will celebrate its first in-person graduation ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, May 12, in the college gymnasium. In total, 123 students are candidates to receive an associate in arts, associate in fine arts, associate in science, or associate in applied science degree from Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College this year. Student speakers will be Sarah Durfee and Janice Sherman....

  • Cloquet approves body camera grant, questions long-term costs

    Jana Peterson|May 6, 2022

    Cloquet city councilors took a step toward purchasing body-worn cameras and new stun guns by voting to accept a $38,000 grant Tuesday night, but acknowledged if they go through with the purchase, it will mean significant expense to the city and its taxpayers. If approved, the estimated cost of a package deal for body-worn cameras — which the department doesn’t have — and new stun guns to replace the almost obsolete equipment used now, is more than $205,000 over five years, with the grant money included. At the end of the five years, the depar...

  • Chamber banquet celebrates its members

    Pine Knot News|May 6, 2022

    The Cloquet Area Chamber of Commerce feted its own, at the group's annual banquet Thursday at the Black Bear Casino Resort. A crowd of at least 180 members gathered for a social hour, dinner, entertainment and awards to the organization's most involved members. The Chamber large business of the year award was presented to Frandsen Bank & Trust in Cloquet, and the Chamber small business of the year award went to Forum Communications' Pine Journal. There was no Chamber volunteer of the year...

  • Spring load restrictions end

    May 6, 2022

    MnDOT will end spring load restrictions in various frost zones on the following dates: Restrictions in the southeast and metro frost zones ended Monday, May 2, at 12:01 a.m. Restrictions in the south frost zone end Friday, May 6, at 12:01 a.m. Restrictions in the central frost zone end Friday, May 13, at 12:01 a.m. Restrictions in the north-central and north frost zones end Monday, May 16, at 12:01 a.m. The sign erected on the roadway governs the load limit in effect....

  • Flapjack Fiasco returns

    Jana Peterson|May 6, 2022

    Nearly 700 people turned out Sunday morning for Harold's Flippin' Flapjack Fiasco, which raised close to $9,000 for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital in its 10th year. On Tuesday, event founder Harold Ankrum said money is still coming in, after a supporter stopped by Harold's Service in Carlton to donate $100 to the cause. Ankrum said people like to support St. Jude's cancer research, but they also like the pancakes. "A lot of it is J.J.'s Family Tradition pancakes recipe," Ankrum said of...

  • The political season is upon us

    Jana Peterson|May 6, 2022

    Considering a run for political office? The filing period for state and local offices — only those that could require primary elections in August — will be open May 17-31. The city of Cloquet has four positions up for election in November, including the mayor and council seats for Wards 1, 2 and 3. All are four-year positions. Carlton County also has a number of positions up for election this year, including county commissioners for District 2 (Thomson Township area) and District 4 (including the Wrenshall, Carlton and Mahtowa area and parts of...

  • Comments on Congress: Bipartisanship isn't dead, but…

    Lee Hamilton|May 6, 2022

    Having just watched a Supreme Court nominee supported by a comfortable majority of Americans draw just three Republican votes in the Senate, you could be forgiven for thinking bipartisanship in Congress is a thing of the past. And in the case of Supreme Court nominees, you’d be right: The last time a nominee got over half the votes of the opposition party was in 2005, and you have to go back nearly three decades — to Ruth Bader Ginsburg in 1993 — to find one who drew votes from almost all senat...

  • Tree diversity is key

    May 6, 2022

    Congratulations to Cloquet city officials for getting Tree City status. I believe the last time we received the designation was during mayor Arlene Wolner's tenure. She was a dedicated tree person as I am, and we worked together to get the designation for Cloquet. At that time, requirements included having a tree board and a tree ordinance. We organized both and received the Tree City designation for several years. As part of the effort, one of my graduate students conducted a survey of the...

  • Letter: Team was magic

    May 6, 2022

    Just a few notes about last week’s story about the 1963 Cloquet boys basketball team. A few years ago the Carlton County Historical Society had a program about this team and season. They had on display the actual state runner-up trophy. It was quite an impressive trophy, and as the runner-up, it far exceeds the trophies given out at today’s tournaments. Today, what I see on TV is that it seems all of the places, champions, runner-up, third, etc., get the same size and design trophy; only what is engraved on them is different. That seems lik...

  • Letter: Support candidate on Stand Your Ground

    May 6, 2022

    As our country will soon be heating up with election campaigns, I would like to bring attention to Minnesota House Representative 11A candidate Jeff Dotseth who supports a bill that gained traction in the Minnesota legislature in 2017 but did not pass. If passed, the Stand Your Ground bill would give citizens better measures to protect themselves, especially as crime accelerates in the Twin Cities area and is heading up north exponentially. There is limited protection for victims of violent crime in Minnesota at this time. The state only...

  • Letter: Chamber doesn't get 'local' designation

    May 6, 2022

    Are you kidding me? The Cloquet Pine Journal is the Cloquet area’s small business of the year? It is based and published in Duluth by Forum Communications, a Fargo, North Dakota company. The Cloquet Chamber of Commerce clearly doesn’t understand where the city boundaries lie. Besides, we have an excellent newspaper in our town called the Pine Knot News which is actually a locally owned and operated business. Chamber board members, get your heads out of the sand. Chris Jenkins, Cloquet...

  • Obituary: Philip Raymond "Skip" Sarazin

    May 6, 2022

    Philip Raymond "Skip" Sarazin, 79, died on April 29, 2022, in his sleep at home in Olive Branch, Mississippi. Skip was born Dec. 27, 1942, to Raymond Philip "Sarge" and Florence Korby Sarazin. Sarge was away at Marine boot camp, and when he requested leave for his first son's birth, he was told, "You may have had to be there to set the keel, but you don't need to be there to launch the ship." Skip and his mom spent his early years at the Korby farm in rural Esko, where he developed his special...

  • Obituary: John Charles Christen

    May 6, 2022

    John C. Christen, 75, of Cloquet passed away peacefully Sunday, May 1, 2022, in Morgan Park. He was born Oct. 15, 1946, in Duluth, the son of John W. and Theresa (Lovich) Christen. John graduated from Morgan Park High School in 1965 and served two tours with the U.S. Navy during the Vietnam War. He later started a variety of businesses, including the Esko Garbage Service and Touch of Class (now called the River Inn), and in 1984 he started Creative Colors and Christen Building. John was...

  • Death Notices

    May 6, 2022

    Mary Helen Juntunen, 95, of Cloquet died Tuesday, March 15, 2022, at Evergreen Senior Living. Visitation: 10 a.m. until the 11 a.m. funeral service Wednesday, May 11, at the Apostolic Lutheran Church in Esko, followed by a social gathering in the church basement. Private family burial. Arrangements by Atkins-Northland. Melvin Jokela, 74, of Esko died Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, in his home. Visitation: 10 a.m. until the 11 a.m. funeral service Saturday, May 14, at the Apostolic Lutheran Church in Esko, with a lunch to follow the service....

  • Wilderness pull off the comeback

    Kerry Rodd|May 6, 2022

    The Minnesota Wilderness returned home last week a wounded animal. The Cloquet junior hockey team had dropped back-to-back road playoff games in Alaska to the Fairbanks Ice Dogs. Any hopes of moving on in the NAHL playoffs rode on the Wilderness winning three straight games in Cloquet on Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights. And that is exactly what they did, capping things off with an impressive 5-1 win on Sunday evening in front of a large crowd that seemingly willed the team to victory. "The...

  • Bombers win pitching battle against Bulldogs

    Kerry Rodd|May 6, 2022

    Local baseball teams have had a tough time getting onto the diamond this spring, but last Thursday Barnum was finally able to host a game as they downed neighboring Carlton 6-1. Leading the way for the Bombers was pitcher Caleb Hautajarvi, who pitched a masterful game. The junior handled the Bulldogs with a 12-strikeout performance. "Caleb did that all last year as a sophomore for us," said Barnum coach Tony Bender. "He's the best pitcher we had last year, he throws well, has good pitch...

  • Lumberjacks scoring early and often

    Kerry Rodd|May 6, 2022

    After weeks of cold, rainy and snowy weather disrupting game schedules, the Cloquet softball team has been busy over the last few days. Last Friday the Lumberjacks bombed Milaca 17-0, and Monday they pounded Virginia 10-0. On Tuesday they opened their home season with a resounding 9-4 win over Duluth Denfeld. Prior to the Milaca game, the 'Jacks had also picked up their first win of the season against Duluth Marshall last week. "It feels great to finally get on our own field," said Cloquet...

  • Cloquet boys hit the volleyball courts

    Jack Slater|May 6, 2022

    Cloquet boys volleyball returns for its fourth year as a club sport, and expectations are high. This is the first year the Lumberjacks are fielding two teams, with 19 kids signed up including, for the time, players from Esko. Kelsey Motzko is back as head coach for the fourth year since the sport started, but only the third season due to Covid-19 cancellation in the spring of 2020. She's excited by the number of kids out for the season. "It's awesome, just the people that want to play up here,"...

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