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Friday morning updates on tornado recovery

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News Wadena,Minnesota 56482
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Friday morning updates on tornado recovery
Wadena Minnesota 314 S. Jefferson 56482

Here's an update of some items we've learned overnight and this morning on the Wadena tornado recovery effort:

• The National Guard has already mobilized 20 soldiers to help here, and 20 more will be here by later today.


• The Red Cross and Salvation Army are here already. Homeland Security is coming later today.

• There was some looting right away, but cops cracked down on that quickly and stopped it in its tracks.

• There's another press conference planned at 10 a.m. at Wadena City Hall.

• A meeting is being held at 9:30 a.m. to decide the fate of the All-School Reunion.

• The high school is in bad shape. The roof was basically torn up. Not good. Not to mention they have half the ice arena roof sitting on the high school roof.

• The parade, which had been postponed, is canceled, Mayor Wayne Wolden said.

• The governor is due in Wadena at 11:15 a.m.

• The Wadena City Council will meet in emergency session at noon. I believe the purpose is to officially declare an emergency locally.

• Both Rep. Murdock and Sen. Skogen were on hand last night.

• There were no fires in the city overnight, according to Fire Chief Dean Uselman, but they're still fixing gas leaks this morning.

• A meeting specifically to get info to the public and allow people to ask questions is in the works, but they're trying to find a big enough venue on the east half of town.

• The color codings on the homes don't mean anything. Just different fire departments using different systems. Don't read anything into it.

• Colfax Avenue/Highway 29 will be closed all day. All areas that are closed off this morning will remain that way all day today. Priority is being given to crews repairing power lines and gas leaks.

• Officials are still saying "we're not at that point yet" about bringing volunteers into town. Not safe enough yet.

• Everyone is buzzing about how well the warning system and sirens worked. Looking at the damage, it is truly amazing no one was killed. Seems highly improbable, but no one was. And most of the 20 injuries at the hospital were minor.

More updates throughout the day.