The 2013-2014 Minnesota Newspaper Conference was held recently at the Doubletree Hotel in Minneapolis. For weekly newspapers with a circulation between 2,501 and 5,000, the Wadena Pioneer Journal won first place for local breaking news coverage of the unprecedented Wadena flood of 2014. The Pioneer Journal also won a first place award for portrait and personality photo of Mary Brown playing bingo at the annual fireman's fundraiser. In the all weeklies area, Bryce Haugen received a third place award for new journalist of the year.
The annual Thanksgiving weekend event drew hundreds of Wadena area residents and out-of-towners to the WDC elementary school and Memorial Auditorium. The weather cooperated and many attendees enjoyed free carriage rides. The festival was sponsored by the Wadena Chamber of Commerce and Convention and Visitor's Bureau. Santa and Mrs. Claus made an appearance and children with their wish lists were excited to see them.
It has been a busy few weeks. School is out for the summer, vacations have started, but it is hard to tell how the weather will treat us here in Central Minnesota. There are some fun events coming up this weekend with the June Jubilee and City Wide Garage Sale! Next week, the 121st Annual Wadena County Fair takes center stage in Wadena. The employees at the Wadena Pioneer Journal and I look forward to seeing you at these events and will participate in them.
It has been a couple of fun weeks going to a movie and watching a new TV series that featured graduates from my alma mater, Minnesota State University, Moorhead. In fact, let's add one more name to the list - David Joerger from Staples. Joerger has had success in the coaching ranks at every level and is a winner. So, it should not be much of a surprise to see that, in his first year as head coach, he has guided the Memphis Grizzlies basketball team to the first round of the National Basketball Association playoffs. I saw the movie "God's Not Dead" recently at the Cozy Theatre.
It was just over a month ago that we made some format changes to the Wadena Pioneer Journal. Since that time, we have received mostly favorable comments, some questions, and, I am happy to report, no serious complaints. We also announced that we would strive to be your daily news source by updating our website and report breaking news. We have done this and will continue to do even more. The reason we will be able to do more of this is because of you, our readers- allow me to explain.
The sky is pitch black, there are no streetlights, and there is no full moon tonight, so you need to turn on your brights if you live in the country. This is just one piece of advice that I have learned living in the country the past couple months and one of a few pieces of advice I have given my kids.
I am writing this portion of my article the Sunday morning of the Super Bowl. As usual, prior to this year's Super Bowl, I am pondering who will win. Seattle and Denver look like a great match up. Initially, I have been looking at the Denver Broncos, and Peyton Manning to win. Manning is arguably the best quarterback to play the game and winning a second Super Bowl would quiet the critics that feel that Manning needs more Super Bowl rings to be considered the best ever. Seattle is a young, flashy team with the best defense in the league.
Some of my fondest memories are from spending time at West McDonald Lake with family members. Most years, in and around the July 4 holiday, my family would spend time with extended family, including my niece's husband, Terel. He was pretty much an instant sensation with me and the rest of the family from the moment we met him. Terel is outgoing, extremely talented, but humble - many times using his talents to help others.
A couple weeks ago my family and I did a first, we moved in December. The first question we had after we sold our Fargo home in early November was how the weather would be for our move, in addition to how hectic it would be to move between the Christmas and New Years holidays. Most moves in these parts normally occur during the warmer months, not during one of the top ten coldest December's ever recorded! Fortunately, we beat the odds and our move landed on the two warmest days of the month. Prayers were answered, so I really should not have anything to complain about.
Wadena certainly has some good restaurants that include good food, good service, and a friendly atmosphere. These eateries don't have silly food challenges, which is alright by me. Conversely, if they did have food challenges, that would be just fine by me since I am a bit of a sucker for them.