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This summer, with the dedication of a 50-foot flagpole at the south end of Sunnybrook Park, the dream of establishing a memorial to Wadena-area veterans started to become reality. It was just the first phase of the Veteran's Memorial Park of Wadena, a project that's been in the works for years.
He's got the beard. He's got the belly. Heck, he's even got the workshop, though he builds caskets and refurbishes furniture instead of fashioning toys for children around the world. For 10 months a year, Patrick Kilby runs Sugar Creek Woodworking and A Simple Pine Box.
Insurance didn't cover losses for most of the dozens of Wadena homeowners who suffered flood damage after heavy July rains, leaving those without the financial resources to restore their basements in a precarious bind. A group of Good Samaritans is helping 16 families, volunteering time and, with Wadena City Council approval, distributing donations from a flood relief fund, matching dollars from the Initiative Foundation, individuals, churches and local service organizations. To date, Neighbor to Neighbor has spent more than $6,000 to finish projects at six homes, replacing hot water heaters
It's time for new blood on the Wadena City Council. That's the message voters sent Tuesday, ousting eight-term Mayor Wayne Wolden along with Toby Pierce and Jeanette Baymler, two incumbent members with a combined 30 years of experience. George Deiss, a component technician at Timber Roots, defeated Wolden by 60 votes, 52 percent to 48 percent, according to complete but unofficial results. He captured 718 votes to Wolden's 658, winning in three out of four Wadena precincts.
"Don't Hug Me," a dinner theater musical from Wadena Madhatters Community Theatre, will debut next weekend at the Wadena Elks Lodge. Written by Phil and Paul Olson, the comedy, based in fictional Bunyan Bay, Minn. in the dead of winter, explores the travails of married bar owners Clara (Deb Gilster) and Gunner (Tim Fultz) who constantly bicker about moving to a warmer climate, their waitress Bernice (Madeline Scott) who endures a "hoser" of a fiance in Knute (Bryce Haugen) and Aarvid (Doug Curtis), a karaoke salesman who mixes things up in this sleepy resort community.
On a chilly October afternoon, Diane Webb walked the gravel roads of the subdivision just west of Wadena city limits, being sure to knock on every door. If no one answered - the result more often than not - she left a business card.
Five candidates are asking voters to elect them Nov. 4 to four-year terms on the Wadena City Council, but only two will take office in January. Incumbents Jeanette Baymler and Toby Pierce - combined, they have 30 years in office - are both seeking another term. They face challengers Bruce Uselman, Deb Wiese and Cody Yglesias, who are all first-time candidates for public office. Jeanette Baymler First elected in 1998, Baymler is vying for a fifth term. She's been a member of the Housing and Redevelopment Authority Board since before joining the council.
Although the odds of Ebola emerging in Wadena are extremely low, Tri-County Health Care is now screening patients for the deadly viral fever. "Because there is that sliver of a risk, Tri-County is prepared," said Tammy Hale, infection preventionist and nurse educator. Like many other health-care providers throughout the nation, TCHC nurses are asking all patients who come to their hospital and clinics whether they have traveled to west Africa or if they have been in contact with anyone who has Ebola. If someone answered "yes" to either one of those questions and had a fever, TCHC would imme
When Councilman Brian Hillesland resigned in July because he was building a home outside of city limits, the city called a special election for voters to choose who will complete the final two years of his term. In August, the city council appointed Don Niles, a former councilman, to serve until the winner of the Nov. 4 election takes office. In hopes of becoming that winner, Niles filed for the seat. He faces one opponent, Will Baumann. Will Baumann Baumann, a Renville, Minn. native, has lived in Wadena for five years.
The mayor's race hasn't been much of a contest since Mayor Wayne Wolden won his first term in 1998. Every two years, he's coasted to reelection. In 2012, Wolden captured 73 percent of the vote versus opponent Michael Burcham's 24 percent. The mayor ran unopposed in 2010 and defeated Burcham by similar margins in 2008 and 2006. He faces his most serious challenge yet in the Nov. 4 election.