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Veterans band performs at VFW, Pelican Valley

It was a flag-waving affair when the Red River Valley Veterans Concert Band made its annual trip to Pelican Rapids during its spring tour of the region. Pictured here, local veterans waved flags during the “Armed Forces on Parade” segment. World War II veterans in the audience at the VFW performance included Kenny Larson, pictured here, and Cecil Femling and Willard Dunn. Also pictured with the microphone is Dale Rollie, a local favorite with numerous relatives in the Pelican Rapids, Lawndale and Barnesville areas.
Earlier in the evening, the band performed to a full house at the Pelican Valley Health Center.
The Red River Valley Veterans band has a performance in the area again this week, at Zorbaz in Detroit Lakes on April 30, 8:15 p.m.
Veterans were honored; flags were waved, songs were sung and there was even a flourish of high-stepping polka-dancing.

The varied program of music included, naturally, patriotic favorites; but also a few popular tunes, a Scandinavian folk song and even the “Beer Barrel Polka.”  

Downtown bridge will be demolished– once and for all–after city council vote

Bridging the gap on a decision regarding the aging culvert crossing over the Pelican River has been a difficult bridge to cross for the Pelican Rapids City Council.
But it appears a final solution has been reached: The bridge will be demolished and removed–replaced by a pedestrian and bicycle crossing.
The council voted April 14 to rescind a previous motion; and approved the demolition of the old bridge–which could save taxpayers about a half million dollars.  read entire story. . . .

Elevator reports nearly $500,000 profits

Less than one year on the job, Pelican Rapids elevator manager Dave Dufault signed off on some impressive numbers at the annual meeting.
Operating profit margins were more than $200,000 above the last fiscal year.  The financial statements were presented at the April 16th annual meeting of the Farmers Elevator Company of Pelican Rapids, hosted by the VFW Club.
“Well, I guess it must be the management,” chuckled  Dufault, after about 50 stockholders and patrons learned that the margin was $483,012–compared to $271,128 in the previous fiscal year.  read entire story. . . .

Park Region business was ‘brag-worthy’

The “wild ride” with propane prices and availability is essentially over, and Park Region Cooperative is well-positioned for the future.
To top it off, the co-op notched record net profits of nearly $300,000 in calender year 2014.
The sometimes-called “propane crisis” will perhaps be the most recalled aspect of 2014, when propane rose to $4.50 a gallon and dropped within a few days. But in retrospect, 2014 was a good all-around year at Park Region–and 2015 is looking good too so far, said general manager Greg Larson.
Total sales were $8.85 million in 2014, compared to $8.24 million in 2013. Profits were almost $100,000 more than the previous year.
 read entire story. . . .

Well-known artist Marcella Rose opens studio in downtown Pelican

Nationally known painter and sculptor Marcella Rose is opening the "Lady of Prairie Lake" studio in Pelican Rapids, Minn., on Thursday, April 30.  
Located in the lower level of the Muddy Moose Restaurant at 30 N. Broadway, the studio's noon opening will be followed by a special wine tasting at the Muddy Moose Restaurant from 4 to 7 p.m.  
The Muddy Moose also features a number of Rose's oil paintings for viewing enjoyment by patrons.
  Lady of Prairie Lake will be a working studio, with summer hours of 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., Tuesday through Saturday, and also by appointment.  read entire story. . . .

Numbers men: Pelican students among top state mathematicians

In recognition of their outstanding achievements in mathematics during the 2014-15 school year, two Pelican Rapids students have been honored among the top mathematicians in the state. Senior Guillermo Rosiles and junior Logan Knorr were both given invitations to train for the All-State Math Team. They now have the opportunity to train with Minnesota’s top math coaches in April and May.
At the end of training the coaches will select the All-State team which will compete at one of four American Regions Mathematics League (ARML) competitions in the nation.  read entire story. . . .

Opening Event at the Muddy Moose showcases ‘Sisters by the River”  complex of local business

“Sisters by the River” is the umbrella label for a stable of unique businesses–lead by enterprising women of the Pelican Rapids area.
The Muddy Moose Restaurant,  together with Nelstrom Flooring, Erika Bartz Chiropractic, Lori Jondahl Just Relax Reflexology & Massage, Lori Jondahl Creations, and Artist Marcella Rose, Lady of Prairie Lake Art Studio, are eight passionate women business owners who have come together under one roof to develop a new energy-filled environment in Pelican Rapids.
These  women created “Sisters by the River Gathering Place," located in the Muddy Moose building in downtown Pelican Rapids.  read entire story. . . .

Divers confirm effective treatment of Christmas Lake zebra mussels

Initial searches indicate a three-step treatment of Christmas Lake in Shorewood for zebra mussels has been effective, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. The results show the successful treatment of a small, isolated infestation of zebra mussels that was detected early.

A survey April 13 by divers from Blue Water Science and Waterfront Restorations found no evidence of zebra mussels. The dive was conducted inside and directly outside the treatment area around the public boat access in the city of Shorewood.

“We are encouraged by these early results,” said Keegan Lund, DNR aquatic invasive species specialist. “We used every available tool to respond to this isolated zebra mussel infestation and learned valuable information in terms of responding to new infestations.”  read entire story. . . .

Highway 34 project to impact traffic in area of Dunvilla, Hwy. 59

Motorists on Highway 34 will encounter a detour between Interstate 94 near Barnesville and Highway 59 at Dunvilla when a road resurfacing project begins April 20, weather permitting.
Crews will resurface 19 miles of Highway 34 and replace several culverts.  The project will proceed from east to west, starting in Dunvilla, said  Jerimiah Moerke, MnDOT public affairs officer in Detroit Lakes.
For home owners, lake property owners and businesses in  the Dunvilla-Pelican Lake area and Otter Tail County Road 9 area, most of the inconvenience for local motorists should be resolved by Memorial Day, said Moerke–depending on weather and other factors.  By starting on the east end, MnDOT is hoping to minimize local lake area traffic inconveniences early in the season.  read entire story. . . .

One for the record books

At 11 years old, Pelican elementary student makes Minnesota fishing history with hefty tullibee catch.

If only grade school kids were old enough to be professional fishing guides–Austin Stoll has all the credentials.
The 11-year-old fifth grader at Pelican Rapids Viking Elementary School is now the official State of Minnesota record holder for the largest tullibee ever caught in the Land of 10,000 Lakes.
The lunker was pulled from the depths of Sybil Lake, in the heart of Otter Tail’s 1,000 lakes in March.  He’ll have a plaque from the DNR–along with his name on every published list of state record fish.
“I’ve always had a passion for fishing,” said Austin, who is contemplating a career as a guide–or a DNR game warden. “Since I’m a good fisherman, I’d like to help other people be good fishermen as well.”
Awestruck–that’s been the reaction from his classmates and buddies at Viking school–not to mention the teachers and staff.  read entire story. . . .

Austin’s awesome fishing adventure

Record fish was perhaps first in history to be weighed on baby scale–at the Pelican Essentia clinic

Austin Stoll heard the six-pound line scorching off his reel. Nearby, his dad Chris Stoll heard it, too, and both knew Austin had a big fish to battle.
By the time the battle was over March 9, Austin pulled up what is now certified as a new state record tullibee (also known as a cisco) weighing 5 pounds, 13 ounces, besting the previous record by 2 ounces that stood for almost 13 years. He caught the fish in Sybil Lake in Otter Tail County.
To certify the tullibee as a record, they took it to be weighed on a certified scale at Essentia Health in Pelican Rapids after driving to Lakeland Store–but it was after hours, and the store was closed.
This mammoth tullibee has another unique distinction.  It is probably the only fish ever weighed in on a certified baby scale; a unit which the Essentia clinic uses to record the weight of infants.  
Two impartial observers witnessed the weighing, and Austin and his dad brought the fish to be identified by two fisheries experts at the DNR Fergus Falls fisheries office. They also had the application stamped by a notary public.  read entire story. . . .

DNR offers guidance for turkey hunters in areas near avian flu

While avian influenza has not yet been found in wild turkeys, hunters are nonetheless reminded of ways to avoid potentially spreading the virus.

To date, highly-pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) has been found in Cottonwood, Kandiyohi, Lac Qui Parle, Lyon, Meeker, Nobles, Pope, Stearns and Watonwan counties. So far, it has only been confirmed in domestic turkey farms. Waterfowl are the natural reservoirs for the virus.  read entire story. . . .

Next year will be 85th year since  discovery of ‘Minnesota Woman’

Year 2016 will be the 85th anniversary of the discovery of the Pelican Rapids “mystery woman.”
Work is well underway on new research and findings that would not only celebrate the 1931 discovery of the prehistoric “Minnesota Woman”–but will also shed new light and gain new prominence for the Minnesota Woman skeleton.
“A profound story” is how Phletus Williams described the new research and information that is being gathered. Much of the story will be revealed in the coming year, culminating in the 2016 anniversary  read entire story. . . .

Downtown sound

Oktoberfest OKs funds for audio system, Erhard signs, park improvements

Downtown Pelican Rapids will be wired for sound, with a financial boost from the Oktoberfest Committee.
A downtown broadcast system has been under discussion for a couple years, and last week, the Oktoberfest committee allocated nearly $3,400 toward the installation.  read entire story. . . .