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Curt Kreklau doesn't view the tax abatement policy commissioners passed last month to entice businesses to build and expand in Wadena County as an economic development silver bullet. Rather, the county coordinator sees it as a foundational piece of a larger, long-term effort, which includes creating a countywide economic development authority and revamping a lackluster website. "This is another tool in the toolkit," Kreklau said.
For more than four years after a EF-4 tornado ripped through Wadena, 29 lots on the southwest side of town where houses once stood have sat vacant, a persistent reminder of the disaster. Now crews are pouring concrete on two of those properties, the first tangible result of the 10 years' worth of property tax breaks the city, county and school district agreed to this summer in hopes of spurring residential redevelopment. The buyer, Jim Merickel, is building a three-unit senior housing complex on Kingsley Avenue.
Three local Catholic parishes will gather at 2 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 12 for a celebration of the Feast of St. Francis. St. Hubert's Catholic Church in Bluegrass will host the event. The parishes of St. Frederick's of Verndale and Our Lady of the Assumption of Menahga will also participate. Everyone is welcome to attend. A statue of St. Francis of Assisi, donated to the St.
A marked Verndale squad car responding to an incident with emergency lights was t-boned in an intersection Friday evening. At about 5:45 p.m., a Nissan Altima heading west on Highway 10 struck the northbound police car as Officer Timothy Sweazey crossed traffic on County 23 in the heart of the small town six miles east of Wadena. Sweazey, a 26-year-old Verndale resident, was taken to Tri-County Health Care, where he was treated for non life-threatening injuries, the Minnesota State Patrol reported. Sweazey was wearing a seatbelt and his airbags deployed.
Help is available for those still reeling from damage suffered after the torrential rainstorm in July, but don't delay asking for it. That's the message of Neighbor to Neighbor, a volunteer group that received Wadena City Council approval last month to disburse donations in order to help homeowners clean up flood damage as well as replace critical items such as furnaces and water heaters. The organization, which performed a similar role following the 2010 tornado as the Wadena Otter Tail Long Term Recovery Committee, will provide money so those in need can buy materials and equipment.
Judging by the outcomes of last year's standardized tests, Wadena-Deer Creek is doing a swell job teaching science. The three grade levels that took the Minnesota Comprehensive Assessments science test all scored above the state average. With 64 percent demonstrating they had met state standards, WDC fifth graders scored three percentage points higher, while eighth graders scored one percentage point higher and sophomores bested the state average by a whopping 10 percentage points. "They drilled it. The kids deserve credit for being really good students ...
In July, the Cyber Cafe received a final check from a source that has supported roughly 29 percent of the downtown Wadena youth center's budget. Due to cuts in Wadena County Public Health's Family Service Collaborative funding, the downtown youth center and coffee shop will lose more than $18,000 a year - a gap that Cloverleaf Youth Partnership, the local non-profit that launched the Cyber Cafe 12 years ago, is looking for ways to bridge. With the help of the city of Wadena, the partnership submitted a request for "innovation funding" from the National Joint Powers Powers Alliance, which, th
Before she joined the Wadena Police Department, Naomi Plautz worked as a regional task force agent, making undercover drug buys, executing search warrants and conducting surveillance. That was 16 years ago.
More than 500 people, many of them in regal garb, participated in the second annual Princess Warrior 5K Run, Walk, Roll, Stroll or Crawl on Saturday, what would have been Jane Fiemeyer's eleventh birthday. Leukemia claimed the Wadena-Deer Creek second grader's life in the fall of 2012. This year's event raised nearly $10,000 for the Princess Warrior Foundation, which raises awareness of childhood cancer, donates to cancer research and helps organizations and individuals - including a $500 annual Wadena-Deer Creek scholarship - who demonstrate what her mother Jil calls "Jane-like" qualities.
Volunteers pretend to be have been injured in a fiery truck collision with a propane tank, one of four scenarios local emergency responders practiced reacting to during a countywide disaster...