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Articles from the December 8, 2023 edition

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  • Moose Lake Council mulls cutting police

    Brady Slater|Dec 8, 2023

    The city of Moose Lake is weighing a proposal that would eliminate its police department in favor of using the Carlton County Sheriff's Office to conduct the city's policing. The Carlton County proposal would staff the city with four dedicated deputies along with a half-time clerical position at a cost of $574,220. "This is not a decision that the city council takes lightly," city administrator Ellissa Owens said. During a tense Nov. 8 city council meeting, councilors and Owens described being...

  • Author takes on Jessica Lange story

    Brady Slater|Dec 8, 2023

    When Anthony Uzarowski set out to write a biography about Cloquet native and world-famous actress Jessica Lange, he planned to visit Minnesota, retrace her steps and meet the sources for the book when he could. Instead, the Covid-19 pandemic struck while Uzarowski and his boyfriend were isolated in a tiny village along coastal France. “I ended up doing all of the research from my office,” Uzarowski told the Pine Knot, this time in a Zoom interview last week from Thailand, where he was vac... Full story

  • Hunters rally against wolves in Carlton

    Brady Slater|Dec 8, 2023

    Roughly 300 hunters sat rapt Wednesday at Four Seasons Sports Complex in Carlton to hear a new grassroots group's plan to pressure the state to act against federal protection of the gray wolf. The group, Hunters For Hunters, formed earlier this year, in front of the Minnesota firearms deer season, which unfolded with disgruntled hunters throughout northeastern Minnesota complaining about seeing more wolves than deer. "Everybody coming out of the woods [was] going to be mad," said Steve Porter, o...

  • Washington award follows better test scores

    Jana Peterson|Dec 8, 2023

    Changing school culture - and incorporating more of the local Ojibwe culture - has paid off for Cloquet's Washington Elementary School, in test scores, recognition and especially the well-being of its American Indian students. Washington principal Robbi Mondati recently learned the school has been designated a National ESEA Distinguished School, an unexpected honor promoted by better test scores. ESEA, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, aims to close the skill gap between students. The...

  • Pine Valley gains state recognition

    Jana Peterson|Dec 8, 2023

    Soon the rest of Minnesota can find out what Cloquet residents already know: Pine Valley is special. City officials learned last week that Cloquet's Pine Valley Recreation Area - home to ski jumps and woodland trails for skiing, walking and mountain biking - was designated a regionally significant park. That means the woodland park will be included on various statewide maps and online resources. More importantly, it makes the park eligible for Minnesota Legacy funds, statewide sales tax dollars... Full story

  • Harry's Gang: A few life lessons from Rotary Club

    Pete Radosevich|Dec 8, 2023

    I recently had the fun of chatting with some members of the local Rotary Club. Rotary, for those of you who don’t know, is a service club of local professionals and business people, whose mission seems to be networking with fellow members, coupled around public service. They meet for lunch weekly, and get themselves involved in community projects from providing books for young readers to maintaining Fauley Park in Cloquet. When I first got to town in 1999, Cloquet schools superintendent Russ Smi... Full story

  • Korby's Connections: Esko indeed defeated Trotters

    Steve Korby|Dec 8, 2023

    There are things happening every day, or that have happened over time in history, that seem hard for us to fathom or believe. The Ripley's Believe It or Not! books and museum are full of snippets that seem misleading, defy logic, or just can't be true. Sports too can present unbelievable odds of an upset ever occurring - and then, it happens. The Harlem Globetrotters - yes, that team - way back in January 1938 came to the Esko gymnasium and lost 42-41 to the Esko Future Farmers of America team.... Full story

  • 'Jacks hit a roadblock at home

    Dwight Cadwell|Dec 8, 2023

    The Cloquet boys basketball team played tough Tuesday, but ultimately fell to North Branch 73-69 in this season's home opener at Cloquet Middle School. Head coach Steve Battaglia isn't worried. "We are going to have some bumps and bruises along the way, but when the section playoffs start next March, this will be a team that [others] are not going to want to play," Battaglia said. "We have six seniors and not a lot of experience, but we have some players that will move into new roles. This is a... Full story

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

    Dec 8, 2023

    Thursday, Nov. 30 Girls hockey Moose Lake Area 6 North Shore 2 Girls basketball Cromwell-Wright 47 Floodwood 31 Cloquet 72 Hermantown 27 Rock Ridge 67 Esko 44 Barnum East Central Boys basketball Cloquet 76 Hibbing 70 Moose Lake/WR 76 Proctor 37 Friday, Dec. 1 Barnum 58 Nashwauk-Keewatin 17 South Ridge 57 Cook County 56 Cromwell-Wright 95 Floodwood 38 Saturday, Dec. 2 Boys Hockey CEC 4 Bloomington Jefferson 2 Girls basketball Esko 78 Annandale 53 Monday, Dec. 4 Boys basketball Carlton/Wrenshall 95 Cook County 41 South Ridge North Woods Girls... Full story

  • Cards start with a bang, outshoot Bombers

    Kerry Rodd|Dec 8, 2023

    When Barnum and Cromwell-Wright boys basketball teams tipped off Tuesday, the crowd was large and raucous as fans anticipated an intense matchup of two perennial Polar League powers. But the Cardinals rode a quick flurry of points in both halves to gain a 64-58 victory at home. "I liked how we came out and played fast against them early," said Cards coach Bill Pocernich. "Dylan Nyberg got hot for us and we just kind of took off." Early in the first half, Cromwell-Wright rode the outside... Full story

  • Santa's home for the holidays 2023

    Dec 8, 2023

    As the days grow shorter, the Santa's Home for the Holidays celebration spread light and cheer last weekend. There were multiple Santa appearances, magic, meals, shopping, a parade, hot drinks, fireworks, s'mores and more fun spanning three days and multiple venues across the city of Cloquet. The new "Pet photos with Santa" saw a good turnout, with only one overexcited doggie accident, no cat fights and one well-behaved hedgehog. The annual Churchill Holiday Expo raised more than $10,000 for...

  • Lumberjacks get a split in first matches

    Kerry Rodd|Dec 8, 2023

    The Cloquet-Esko-Carlton wrestling team opened the season with a home triangular match against Proctor/Hermantown and Superior. The Lumberjacks took a 39-33 win over Proctor/Hermantown, but fell, 42-34, to the Spartans. Against Proctor/Hermantown - a team they lost to last year - the 'Jacks got forfeit wins by Henry Scheopflin at 107 pounds, Alex Comer at 114 and Carter Horvat at 189. Aiden Theisen was victorious at 121 by winning in a pin over Jack London. At 145, Brendon Malloy took a 13-11... Full story

  • Wilderness swept but remain in first

    Dec 8, 2023

    The Minnesota Wilderness returned from Eagle River, Wisconsin last weekend, stinging from a sweep at the hands of the Wisconsin Windigo. The losses, 3-0 Friday and 4-3 Saturday, left the first-place Wilderness with a three-point lead atop the Midwest Division of the North American Hockey League, with 35 points to Wisconsin’s 32. The Wilderness built a 3-0 lead midway through Saturday’s game, only to see the Windigo chip away to eventually tie the score in the final seconds and win the game in a shootout. Max Martin’s goal with 5 seconds left an... Full story

  • Photo: A well-used scoreboard

    Dec 8, 2023

    The Carlton/Wrenshall Raptors posed under the new scoreboard in the Wrenshall gym Monday after a 94-51 win over Cook County. The community effort to raise money for the new board was celebrated as the Raptors opened their season and gave the gizmo quite a workout with the big score. Sam Ojibway led the Raptors with 22 points, five rebounds and six steals. Uriah Loucks had 15, Carter Woodall had 13, and Jackson Korpela scored 12.... Full story

  • Wright/Cromwell news

    Jennie K. Hanson|Dec 8, 2023

    The Bethlehem Lutheran Women’s bazaar and brunch is 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 9 at the church in Wright. There will be lots of Christmas items, baked goods, egg bakes, muffins, juice and coffee. Donations of new or gently used Christmas and holiday items are welcomed. Call me at 218-357-2385 or Diane at 218-380-1722 to make arrangements for dropping off donations. The last Young Old Timers gathering for 2023 will be held at noon on Dec. 12 at the Cromwell Park Pavilion. This will be our Chri...

  • Kettle River news

    Marcia Sarvela|Dec 8, 2023

    The next Kettle River council meeting is at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 12 at the Kettle River Senior Center. Cookies and caroling will be at 6:30 p.m. on Dec. 19 at the Suomalainen Kirkko (Finnish Cultural Center) on the corner of Minnesota Highway 73 and Carlton County Road 6. Bring cookies to share, and join in singing the old familiar carols. One Christmas, my sister and her boyfriend, Jack, were joking around, and she told him she was going to get him a bottle of booze for Christmas. That year, we had purchased a bottle of rum for making our rum...

  • Photo: A show of lights

    Dec 8, 2023

    December was ushered in by the northern lights, pictured north of Cloquet on Keith Miernicki's Christmas tree farm at about 10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 1. Photographer Dan Malkovich said the half-moon had risen, offering just enough light to make out nearby trees. "The silence was broken by the recurrent hooting of a nearby owl," he said. "It was another relatively mild evening, with absolutely no air movement, but still cold enough to vaporize the moisture in my breath. It hung like fog about my head... Full story

  • Commitee picks loon seal

    Dec 8, 2023

    The loon will be featured on the official Great Seal of the State of Minnesota. The State Emblems Redesign Commission unanimously voted Tuesday to move forward with "design S224" as the basis for the seal. Aspects of the design may still be modified, including dates, language, design of the stars, and colors, the commission reported. Commissioners also listened to testimony from the public during Tuesday’s meeting. They will meet in person Dec. 12 to discuss design modifications to the state s... Full story

  • Christmas at the tribal college

    Dec 8, 2023

    It’s a big holiday weekend at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College. The annual Holiday Celebration at Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College returns to campus today, Dec. 8. The family event, hosted by the FDLTCC Human Services Club, is 5:30-7:30 p.m. in the FDLTCC commons. The holiday fun continues 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 9, with the Arts and Crafts Holiday Market in the FDLTCC Commons. During the event, artists, bakers, and craft makers will be sharing beautiful beadwork, healing soaps and creams, Native American artwork, a...

  • Photo: Good cheer from community band

    Steve Korby|Dec 8, 2023

    The Cloquet Area Community Band presented its annual holiday concert at the Cloquet Presbyterian Church on Sunday, Dec. 3. The band (and the fantastic acoustics) provided the audience with a great variety of toe-tapping and bell-ringing holiday music favorites. With soothing hot drinks and treats provided after the performance, it was a happy occasion.... Full story

  • Wrenshall school board preps for 'cushion' loan

    Brady Slater|Dec 8, 2023

    The Wrenshall school board will vote later this month on another loan to support cash flow during a period of time in the new year when district funds will be at their lowest. Speaking at Tuesday’s work session of the board, superintendent Jeff Pesta compared the $300,000 loan to last year, when the board approved a $500,000 loan. “This is truly our safety net,” Pesta said, later telling the Pine Knot, “in my recommendation to the board, I’m reasoning that the cost of borrowing $300,000 is worth it to eliminate the small risk of coming up...

  • Annual toy drive begins this week

    Dec 8, 2023

    Kingdom Builders Ministries is seeking donations of new and gently used toys, which they plan to give away. Anyone willing to donate is asked to drop off toys at the former Common Ground building — now home to Holy Smokes — at 103 Ave. C in Cloquet, during business hours from Dec. 12 through Dec. 15. Kingdom Builders volunteers will sort the toys. The toy giveaway will take place 9-10 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 16 in the large gathering space behind the restaurant....

  • MnDOT wants snowplow names

    Dec 8, 2023

    The Minnesota Department of Transportation is once again inviting the public to help name another round of eight snowplows, one for each MnDOT district in the state. Past winners include the names Plowy McPlowFace, Blader Tot Hotdish, Han Snowlo and The Truck Formerly Known As Plow. MnDOT encourages people to submit their most witty, unique and Minnesota- or winter-themed snowplow name ideas on the agency’s website, www.dot.state.mn.us. Submissions will be accepted through noon on Dec. 15. Check the guidelines on the site. MnDOT staff will r...

  • Tax rebates to be taxed by feds

    Dec 8, 2023

    The federal government is taking a cut from most of the Minnesota tax rebates sent out this fall, meaning a $26 to $286 handover depending on the size of a household’s initial payout. The Minnesota Department of Revenue failed to convince the IRS to treat the rebate as it had the tax-free pandemic-era checks delivered by other states. The rebates were $260 per person subject to income caps, with a qualifying household eligible for up to $1,300 if a couple had three or more dependents. It all means that $100 million or more of the $1 billion o...

  • Council approves 2.85-percent levy increase

    Jana Peterson|Dec 8, 2023

    Cloquet city councilors and mayor Roger Maki approved a smaller budget Tuesday than they expected three months ago. That means the levy increase for property taxes will also be smaller than reflected in recent estimates, with a 2.85-percent levy increase versus 4.53 percent. One local business owner spoke during the Truth in Taxation hearing that preceded the vote. Jim Kuklis, who owns Trails Edge subdivision - consisting of two-family townhomes available for rent by residents over the age of 55...

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