Highlighted by "white glitter from heaven" aka snow, no doubt in honor or Jane Fiemeyer, the sixth annual Princess Warrior 5K held on Saturday was a great success. With 611 registrations and over 60 volunteers, Wadena was filled with people celebrating the lives of children fighting cancer and those that have lost the battle to the disease.
With shouts of "Pummel Pelican Rapids" heard throughout downtown Wadena on Friday, Sept. 28, crowds gathered along the windswept streets in Wadena to watch a blustery Homecoming parade.
The number of state inpatient hospital beds available to those suffering from acute mental illness has dropped from some 10,000 beds in the 1950s to 194 in Minnesota in 2016, according to Wadena County Human Services Supervisor Mike Willie, who shared the numbers from a report titled, "Going, Going, Gone: Trends & Consequences of Eliminating State Psychiatric Beds.
Wadena County Commissioners were a bit shocked upon hearing the county tax levy was pushing over a 5 percent increase during their regular meeting Tuesday, Sept. 25. County coordinator Ryan Odden was surprised as well, but noted some ways to lower that amount. County commissioners Chuck Horsager and Jim Hofer sit on the budget committee and both hoped to see the levy increase shrink closer to 3 percent. Hofer indicated the changes were plentiful on the journey to shrinking the budget.
Sophie Kreklau and Maxwell Phillips were crowned Wadena-Deer Creek School's 2018 queen and king Friday before crowds of students, staff, families and friends. The two stood before the assembly along with other candidates including king candidates Steven Thomas, Alex Snyder, Cade Kapphahn and Colby Schertler, and queen candidates McKenna Wangsness, Abby Motschenbacher, Ashley Adams and MacKenzie Salge. The group was dressed in their best, ladies in a variety of dresses while the gentlemen wore matching white tuxedos with light gold bow ties and black vests.
A balanced 2019 budget was presented to city council members Tuesday, Sept. 11, and all were in favor of approving the preliminary tax levy to help pay for it. The levy showed a 1.38 percent decrease from 2018, or about $14,700 difference. The $1,051,548.79 property tax levy will pay for $65,000 in general obligation bonds; $199,407 in bonds for the 2015 SE sewer project; $278,788 for the 2015 SE stormwater project; $180,337 for the 2015 SE water project; and $328,015 for general fund costs.
You're running late for work, you've got to get the kids dropped off at school and you don't have time to walk from a block away. Yes, those signs on Colfax next to the elementary school may say no parking, but everybody's doing it. Well, not anymore. Starting this school year, the Wadena Police Department will be enforcing the no parking and they hope to soon have new signage to help those who are not familiar with parking in the school zone.
Families were invited out to enjoy food, fun, games and prizes Sunday, Sept. 16, during the annual St. Ann's Catholic Church Family Festival. The crowds came out for one last blast of summer with temperatures reaching 90 degrees in Wadena and winds gusting up to 36 miles per hour, according to the weather station at the Wadena Municipal Airport. By 6 a.m. Monday, temperatures had dropped 42 degrees to 48 degrees. Temperatures remained in the 50s throughout most of Monday thanks to a jet stream of cool air pushing out the heat.
The work of a few is ensuring the lives of many are honored many years to come at the Wadena Veterans Memorial Park. Work to maintain and build upon a memorial for the fallen veterans of the Wadena area has been ongoing for about five years by a group of unpaid volunteers. Their work has yielded a place where over 5,000 names are displayed and memorialized. A list of over 500 others still wait to be added.
Cancer is a giant of a problem and one local girl has made a commitment to stand up to it. Ten-year-old Brooke Goddard of Wadena found out about an opportunity to help those fighting cancer through the Pinky Swear Foundation three years ago. It's a foundation started by Mitch Chepokas who passed away from cancer at age 9. Mitch's sister is a good friend of Brooke's mom, Ashley Goddard. Through that connection, Brooke learned about how she could do her part in the battle against childhood cancer.