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Articles from the November 29, 2019 edition


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  • Utility tax hits keep coming

    Jana Peterson|Nov 29, 2019

    As proposed 2020 tax statements arrived in mailboxes this week, some Carlton County residents were shocked to find out just how much their property tax bill is likely to increase next year. Thanks to a triple whammy of decreasing utility company valuations, increasing local taxes and higher assessed values for most residential properties, some homeowners could see their taxes payable in 2020 increase by as much as 30 percent. Residents of Perch Lake, Silver Brook, Twin Lakes and Sawyer...

  • Ho, ho, home

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Winter weather: check Christmas lights: check Big guy in a red hat: check Even though the big guy is a voyageur statue rather than a resident of the North Pole bearing gifts, never fear — Santa is coming home for the holidays. This year’s Santa’s Home for the Holidays festivities in Cloquet begin Wednesday with Elf Bingo for kids and a free chili feed at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church 4:30 to 7 p.m. On Thursday, kids are invited to enjoy Storytime with Santa 10:15 to 11:15 a.m. at the Dunlap Island shelter. Later in the day, head to the Holid...

  • In youth battle, Esko tips Cloquet

    Tyler Harms-Synkiew|Nov 29, 2019

    With her team up by three points and under 20 seconds to go, Esko's Aila Gabel had to make just one of two free throws to seal the win for her team during Friday night's game in Esko. With a rowdy opposing crowd, no one could blame Gabel for being nervous. Or not. The sophomore cooly drained both shots, propelling the Eskomos past Cloquet by a score of 49-43 in each team's first regular season game of the season. Gabel wasn't the only underclassman playing in last week's matchup. Both teams...

  • Man drowns after fall into icy St. Louis River

    Jana Peterson|Nov 29, 2019

    Despite the best efforts of local law enforcement and emergency personnel, a man drowned early Saturday morning after falling through the ice on the St. Louis River in Scanlon. At approximately 1:30 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 23, local law enforcement officials had wrapped up a call to break up a large fight at the River Inn Bar & Grill, when two Cloquet police officers who were talking through the open windows of their squad cars heard a person yelling from the direction of the river. After...

  • This week in state history

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Historic Minnesota events with anniversaries this coming week. Nov. 29 2000 Pioneering journalist Marvel Jackson Cooke dies in New York. Born in Mankato in 1903, Cooke moved to Harlem in 1926 and worked for the NAACP’s Crisis magazine, the Amsterdam News, and the People’s Voice. In 1950 she joined the staff of the New York Daily Compass and was the first African American woman to work full-time for a major white-owned American newspaper. Nov. 30 1912 Gordon Parks is born in Fort Scott, Kansas. He would move to St. Paul as a teenager and eve...

  • No more rooms at the inn

    Jana Peterson|Nov 29, 2019

    The Golden Gate motel in Scanlon was demolished last week. The property was purchased by Kwik Trip this past summer so it can make room at the neighboring convenience store for expanded parking, a car wash and new liquor store. The Kwik Spirits store, formeraly Gramma Polo's, will also be torn down. A car wash will take its place. The purchase of the motel property also allows Kwik Trip better access to Carlton County Highway 61. The Golden Gate Inn closed in May under a cloud of complaints...

  • A touch of Sweden at Carlton County farm

    Lois E. Johnson|Nov 29, 2019

    Shoppers for Christmas trees can experience a Swedish Christmas in Minnesota at the Jansson Tree Farm of Gunilla and Goran Jansson north of Mahtowa just off of Highway 61 at the end of Carlson Road. The tree farm wopens today and will run for eight days, through Saturday, Dec. 7. "People can walk over or drive over to the tree area," Gunilla said. "They can feel and smell the trees before they find the one that will be just right for them. People will be able to cut their own trees or we can...

  • Finding that elusive aurora light

    Cynthia Lapp|Nov 29, 2019

    Seeing the northern lights pulse and dance across the sky is a highlight of living in northern Minnesota. Some of us grew up with this amazing phenomena. For others, it is a lifetime dream to someday witness the aurora borealis. "I grew up in Chicago, where I thought nothing about the night sky. When I first heard about the aurora (borealis) as a young person, I was amazed," Carla Goldschmidt said. In 2000, Goldschmidt moved to Carlton County, when her husband was called to minister. On a fall...

  • Cloquet school taxes stay down; big grant awarded

    Jana Peterson|Nov 29, 2019

    Two pieces of great news came out of Monday’s Cloquet school board meeting: 1.The school district tax levy will increase by less than half a percent; 2.The district is part of a consortium of mostly Carlton County school districts that was awarded a $1.5 million grant ($750,000 each year for the next two years) to expand and explore the career and technical education programs in the area. Other school districts in the group include Barnum, Carlton, Cromwell-Wright, Esko, McGregor, Moose Lake, Willow River and Wrenshall. All of the districts a...

  • Jury trial set for man accused of murdering his uncle

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    A jury trial is set to begin in January for a man accused in the shooting death of his uncle in 2018. James Francis Montano, 33, of Bayfield County, was arrested in April 2018 in Carlton County for shooting his uncle, 57-year-old Andrew James Gokee, and injuring Gokee’s son, 38-year-old Hudson Gauthier, Montano’s cousin. The Bayfield man faces charges of first-degree premeditated murder, attempted premeditated first-degree murder, two counts of second-degree murder and assault in the second degree. According to the criminal complaint: Car...

  • Utility taxes: Court softens the tax blow

    Jana Peterson|Nov 29, 2019

    Carlton County got some “not catastrophic” news regarding how much the county and other taxing authorities within it will need to repay utility companies for overcharging in tax assessments as various utility lawsuits make their way through Minnesota Tax Court. Earlier this month, the Tax Court raised its previous May 2018 valuation of the Enbridge oil pipeline corridor for assessments in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Instead of the previous valuation of $3.42 billion, the court now set the value of the Enbridge pipeline system at $4.73 billion. The...

  • Help make it the best Christmas ever

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Chances are, you’re going to get hit up to help make some local families have their Best Christmas Ever. The popular charity, with local roots, aims to improve the holiday for a few families who, through no fault of their own, are experiencing substantial adversity this year and who could benefit from being shown that others care. And undoubtedly you will be hearing the bell ringers at the Salvation Army’s annual red kettle drive. The Salvation Army raises a substantial amount of their donations during the Christmas season, and uses its fun...

  • Harry's Gang: Women make inroads

    Pete Radosevich|Nov 29, 2019

    A few weeks ago I was in court arguing a motion against the always impenetrable opposing attorney Jessica Sterle. Midway through, the judge needed to stop for a minute to consult with her clerk and Jessica and I took a few minutes to get caught up. We’ve been colleagues for a long time, and have gotten to know each other personally and professionally. After a few minutes, Jessica made an interesting observation: I, Pete Radosevich, was the only male in the courtroom. The judge was a woman. T...

  • Notes from a small pond: Robbed

    Parnell Thill|Nov 29, 2019

    When I was 7, my Gramps let me hold a 1903 Colt .45 six-shooter revolver and shoot it at a line of Olympia beer cans he’d arranged on the branch of an oak tree somewhere out in the Ditchbanks. I hit five out of six. Gramps was ecstatic. The noise and the kick didn’t scare me at all. Missing the cans on the branch did. My dad was there. It was 1972. A bunch of years later, on my 16th birthday, Gramps gave me that revolver, saying: “Don’t ever use it unless you’re gonna use it, except on cans....

  • On The Mark: Why Ukraine matters to us as Americans

    Ann Markusen|Nov 29, 2019

    Listening to portions of Congressional testimony this past week, I realized how little most of us know about Ukraine. It’s important because of its strategic economic and geopolitical position in Europe, its exit from the Soviet Union, and its struggle to emerge from corruption and build democracy. With a group of North American regional scientists, I spent most of a week in Ukraine in 1991, when it still belonged to the Soviet Union. We traveled by bus to Donetsk in Eastern Ukraine, where f...

  • Letters: Taxpayers shouldn't fund Wall Street failures

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    I was right. At the last Mercy Hospital District finance committee meeting, it was admitted that $306,000 was lost in the stock market account for 2018. They took $500,000 in tax money from five townships and three little cities and lost $306,000 of it playing in the stock market. State Statute 447.34 “Payment of expenses; taxation” states in Subd 2 “on or before September 15 of each year, the hospital board shall decide the amount necessary to be raised from ad valorem tax levies to meet its expenses.” Since when is gambling on the stock m...

  • Letters: DNR needs to save deer, by managing wolves

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    As an outdoorsman and a Minnesota hunter I read with interest the commentary on the deer population facing a threat in the form of chronic wasting disease (CWD). Although CWD is a major concern that needs more research, the greatest threat currently reducing the state’s deer herd is the overpopulation of wolves. This is occurring daily and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources refuses to discuss it, let alone put forth a plan that saves deer and not wolves. Wolves have destroyed the deer herd in certain areas of northern Minnesota, and,...

  • Obituaries: Curtis R. Wilson

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Curtis R. Wilson died on Wednesday, Nov. 20, 2019. He was born Dec. 8, 1951, and raised in Cloquet by Roy Curtis and Jane B. (Fay) Wilson, who predeceased him, he is survived by the love of his life, Lisa Wilson, whom he married on May 25, 1991, and their daughter, Zoë Rose Wilson, and her fiancé, John A. “Alex” Reinman. Curt was a graduate of Cloquet High School and the University of Minnesota with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering. He worked for various engineering firms...

  • Obituaries: Victoria B. Diver

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Victoria B. Diver, 68, of Cloquet passed away Friday, Nov. 22, 2019, at Bayshore Residence and Rehabilitation Center in Duluth. She was born Jan. 30, 1951, in Cloquet to Charles and Marie (Pattee) Peterson. Vicky was a 1970 graduate of Cloquet High School and a graduate of Lake Superior College. She was a homemaker throughout her life and was a member of Our Savior’s Lutheran Church. Vicky was preceded in death by her parents; maternal grandmother, Pearl Pattee; brothers Charles and Robert P...

  • Obituaries: Ryan William Hill

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Ryan William Hill, 34, died tragically due to an accident on Saturday, Nov. 23, 2019. He was born on June 22, 1985, in Cloquet. Ryan graduated from Cloquet High School in 2003. He started his journey with the love of his life, Ashley Clark, in May of 2004, and they were married on May 1, 2010, at Our Redeemer Lutheran Church in Cloquet. Ryan had been employed at Savanna Pallets for the past 15 years. He was truly a family man who loved his wife and boys deeply. Ryan loved just about everything...

  • Obituaries: Elizabeth A. "Betty" Starkey

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Elizabeth A. “Betty” Starkey, 86, Jamestown, North Dakota, passed away surrounded by her family on Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019 at Ave Maria Village in Jamestown. Betty was born July 14, 1933 at the home farm in Splitrock Township, Minnesota, the daughter of George and Stella (Poslusny) Greske. She graduated high school in Moose Lake, Minnesota in May 1951. She worked at the Diamond Match Mill in Cloquet, Minnesota until she met her husband Roger Starkey. She and Roger Merlin Starkey were wed on Mar...

  • Death Notices

    Pine Knot News|Nov 29, 2019

    Sandra Kay Skoglund, 60, of Cloquet passed away on Sunday, Nov. 24, 2019, in Community Memorial Hospital. A service will be held at a later date. Arrangements entrusted to Atkins Northland Funeral Home. Violet M. Witeli, 94, of Cloquet passed away Monday, Nov. 25, 2019 in Chris Jensen Health and Rehabilitation Center in Duluth. Gathering of family and friends: 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Monday, Dec. 2 in the Atkins Northland Funeral Home, 801 14th St., Cloquet. Lunch will be served. Burial will follow in Maple Grove Cemetery....

  • Wrenshall News: Oh deer; the Wrenshall student tradition

    Anne Dugan|Nov 29, 2019

    Gratitude can be a funny thing; it's often the case that when you have less of something, you tend to be thankful for it more than when you have it in abundance. Take light, for instance. This time of year we have a lot less of the stuff compared to summertime. By the winter solstice (December 21) we'll have eight and a half hours of daylight versus the almost 16 hours of daylight we get at the end of June. I think the increasing darkness is one of the reasons holiday lighting gives me such...

  • Volunteer spotlight

    Kathy Niemi|Nov 29, 2019

    The Retired and Senior Volunteer Program is one of the largest volunteer networks in the nation for those 55 and over. One of the great things about this program is that one can use skills and interests developed over a lifetime for the benefit of the community. This month’s featured volunteer, Bonnie Wenborg, is doing just that. From among her many skills, Wenborg is using her bookkeeping skills to assist the Tri-Community Food Shelf in Cromwell. When Wenborg heard about the need, she says she figured she had the necessary skills, so why n...

  • Wright-Cromwell news

    Jennie K. Hanson|Nov 29, 2019

    Little Ariahlyn Goodin, daughter of Luc and Suzy Goodin, will be baptized on Sunday, Dec. 1 at the Bethlehem Lutheran Church at their 9 a.m. service. Please join the family in this special ceremony. Our sympathy goes out to the family of Harold Arthur Maki, 82, of Cromwell who passed away Nov. 20 at St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth. He had been a resident of Cardinal Court in Cromwell. Harold was raised in Kalevala Township and attended grade school there prior to graduating from Cromwell High Scho...

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