My first thought was, “Is that a kangaroo rat or what?” Then I thought, “We don’t have kangaroo rats in Minnesota, they live in a desert.” Of the 5 of us camping in the Boundary Waters none of us could identify the mouse that was hopping around our campfire late one evening. None of us had ever seen such a mouse and none of us was particularly fond of seeing one at that particular time.
The thing about normal mice is they seemingly come out of nowhere to startle a person with their appearance and quick movements. The mouse we were seeing had movements that were unexpected and unpredictable. Rather than running along the ground in a somewhat expected pattern the mouse we were watching leaped and bounded from one place to the next. This made the mouse seem even more threatening to the 5 BWCA campers.
We all vowed to check the internet when we got home so we could determine what kind of mouse jumped around like a kangaroo. According to my research the woodland jumping mouse is found in Northeastern Minnesota and this must have been the visitor to our Boundary Waters campsite.from the DNR… Jumping Mice
Two species of jumping mice live in Minnesota: the meadow jumping mouse (Zapus hudsonius) and the less common woodland jumping mouse (Napaeozapus insignis). The meadow jumping mouse ranges throughout Minnesota. The woodland jumping mouse stays in the woods of northeastern Minnesota.
With their long hind feet and the longest tail of any Minnesota mouse, they can jump more than three feet to avoid danger. They are also good swimmers and divers. But the main way they avoid predators is by standing very still.
Readers who are not writing a letter to the editor to the Cook County News-Herald this week will likely not notice that a subtle change has been made to our editorial policy. Regular submitters may not notice the change at all, as they already know the letter to the editor guidelines.
They may not always follow those guidelines, which leads to a bit of conflict now and then, but our frequent contributors do know the length, libel and slander limits.
The change is subtle. We rearranged the language in the note at the bottom of the editorial page and added a line. Along with the requisite: “Letters to the editor, columns and cartoons are the opinions of the contributors and not necessarily the Cook County News-Herald”—we’ve added a cautionary statement for letter writers.
The footnote now also states: “While we encourage readers to submit letters to the editor on issues they feel strongly about, we encourage writers to be respectful to one another. Your message is more likely to be heard if it is delivered in a civil manner.”
The change is one outcome of my attendance at the Blandin Foundation Editor & Publisher Community Leadership Program—and of the meetings with community members that followed. Participating in the Editor & Publisher Leadership Program—E&P for short—is an amazing experience.
The program was established by the Blandin Foundation and the Minnesota Newspaper Association, based on the traditional community leadership program offered by Blandin. The goal of the training is to create healthy communities. At the training, each attendee took a hard look at his or her own community. The Blandin Foundation doesn’t give advice on what participants should do when they get back home. In fact, the training raises more questions than it answers. But the leadership sessions give invaluable networking opportunities and provide resources and support as leaders work through what works best for a community.
We have quite a few community members who have attended Blandin Leadership training. You likely know someone who has participated. They are government officials, nonprofit volunteers, teachers, and business owners. Most are actively working to make Cook County a better place, using the skills they learned and the ideas generated at the program into action.
The goal of the E&P program is the same. Since 2005, newspaper editors and publishers from across the state have gathered to take part in the program that asks them to look at the newspaper’s role in the community. One of the principles stressed in both the traditional and the E&P leadership program is the importance of social capital.
We all need people we can count on, to turn to when things need to get done. For a newspaper, it is crucial. We need to know who to call to clarify budget questions, to explain environmental rules and regulations, to let us know the story behind the story. We need people to act as citizen journalists at all the meetings and events that our small staff can’t get to. We need our local photographers to capture moments that we miss because there is too much going on. We couldn’t produce a newspaper without support from the community—our social capital.
So one of the Blandin E&P assignments was to reach out to the community to build social capital. We were asked to do that by interviewing community leaders about the newspaper’s role in the community.
I took it a step further. You may have seen the announcement of a newspaper focus group back in May. It was really interesting. The goal was to evaluate the Cook County News-Herald on how we were doing covering factors that create a healthy community, such as lifelong learning opportunities, safety and security for all, environmental stewardship and more. I asked for ideas and suggestions on how the newspaper could contribute to a healthier community with its coverage. I received that feedback—and then some. Thank you to the folks who took time out of their busy lives to participate!
One of the things that came through loud and clear—in the focus group and the one-on-one interviews—was that people were often irritated and offended by letters to the editor. My knee jerk reaction was to reply that many letters are much more spiteful than what gets published. I wanted to say that we have little control over submissions. But I tried to keep my mouth shut and listen. And I kept hearing that people were not reading the letters because of the angry discourse.
That is troubling and I took the question to the E&P group. I was vindicated a bit. As defenders of a citizen’s constitutional right to free speech, the group collectively agreed that we have little control over what readers submit. It’s a slippery slope, deciding what will offend a reader. If we rigidly edited or refused to run every letter that could possibly offend, we’d have no letters at all. And that would be as harmful as having some letters that may annoy or offend.
So, with our new policy, the Cook County News-Herald is asking readers to police themselves. Our new policy uses the honor system. We encourage you to write letters on subjects you feel strongly about. But we also encourage you to speak gently to one another. We want your message to be heard.
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A healthy community is a place where all people can meet their economic, social, physical, cultural and spiritual needs, working together for the common good and participating in creating their future.
The Blandin Foundation philosophy
Happy Independence Day weekend! We hope you have a safe and wonderful weekend up here in Cook County, MN. Make sure to check out our online calendar of events to see all that our area has to offer for entertainment for the weekend. There will be 4th of July festivities in Tofte, Grand Marais and Grand Portage with fireworks at 10pm in all three locations.
As part of a larger partnership with the state of Minnesota, Visit Cook County has opted in to be a part of the 40th anniversary of A Prairie Home Companion by declaring Grand Marais and all Visit Cook County communities “Lake Wobegon” for the day.
GRAND MARAIS TO BECOME “LAKE WOBEGON®” FOR ONE WEEKEND TO CELEBRATE 40TH ANNIVERSARY OF A PRAIRIE HOME COMPANION
Grand Marais and Cook County are joining communities across Minnesota, July 4- 6, in becoming Lake Wobegon for one weekend in honor of the 40th anniversary of the show that brought the town to life. As A Prairie Home Companion celebrates 40 years with weekend festivities in St. Paul at Macalester College, cities and towns across the state are becoming honorary “Lake Wobegons” for the weekend.
“As Minnesotans, we all feel like we know Lake Wobegon; it’s where we grew up, where we vacation or where we now live. We can see ourselves in the stories Garrison has told over the years,” said Linda Kratt, executive director of Visit Cook County MN. “This is a fun way for us to recognize the impact that A Prairie Home Companion has had not only on our state, but nationally and internationally.”
As an honorary Lake Wobgeon, Visit Cook County will be featured on A Prairie Home Companion’s website along with other participating cities and communities. Additionally, Gov. Mark Dayton declared July 6 as “A Prairie Home Companion Day” in the state of Minnesota.
A Prairie Home Companion is heard on more than 600 public radio stations across the U.S., with a weekly audience that tops 4 million listeners. The program can also be heard on the Armed Forces Network Europe, the Far East Network, and in dozens of European cities via the Astra satellite network.
Garrison Keillor has been the host and writer of A Prairie Home Companion since the program started production in 1974. He is also the author of more than two dozen books, including Lake Wobegon Days; Love Me; O, What a Luxury, and his recently released, The Keillor Reader.
A Prairie Home Companion is produced by Prairie Home Productions and distributed by American Public Media. The show is sponsored nationally by Holiday Vacations and by Ford. The July 4-6 weekend is sponsored by Macalester College. Audio clips, scripts and more information on A Prairie Home Companion and all the weekend’s events can be found online at http://prairiehome.publicradio.org/tickets/2014/40th/.
Summer is nearly here, and True North broadband construction is resuming after the long winter!
Construction crews continue mobilizing as road bans are removed from county roads, the ground has thawed and after yesterday’s wind, the sun is shining! Underground construction will start on the west side of Grand Portage and proceed towards Hovland while another crew works to install new power and fiber lines from the US/Canada border to Grand Portage. Aerial crews have also begun work between Hovland and Grand Portage while underground and aerial drop crews are progressing in Schroeder, Tofte, Grand Marais, Hovland and Grand Portage. Splicers are working in Schroeder, Tofte and Lutsen.
Service installations continue in Schroeder and have begun in the west part of Tofte. We connected our 100th customer today! More splicing crews will begin in limited areas of Lutsen next week and additional splicers have been working in Grand Marais as well. Installations for these areas are not yet being scheduled, but will be soon. Our Welcome Flier can help you prepare for your future installation by helping you select the services you want.
Guest who were here for the Memorial weekend got a real treat!! Who would believe that the ice went out on May 19th and the temps were in the 80′s by Memorial weekend. Memorial weekend was great with hi temps, sunny days and virtually no bugs!
Fishing is well on it’s way with people catching Lake Trout anywhere from the surface to 30ft. The Walleye are still in the shallows finishing up their spawning season. Lake temps are changing quickly. The past 80 degree temps changed the shallow lake temps from the upper 30′s to the mid 50′s over night.
Trolling floating stickbait is still the preferred methods for the evening Walleye bite. Lindy rigging live baits seem to be the best bet for daytime Walleye fishing. Lake Trout seem to be responding to stickbaits, spinners and spoons. The bass are still a bit slow, but we’re finally hearing of some movement, and the Northern are crusing the shorelines.
More to come!
A memorial service has been planned for Dennis Todd June 7th 10am at the Gunflint Conference Center at 143 S. Gunflint Lake Rd, Grand Marais MN. Dennis was a fishing guide on the Gunflint Trail for 20+ years.
Dennis Ray Todd of Appleton City MO. & The Gunflint Trail MN. died as a result of a boating accident on Nothern Light Lake in Canada on September 12, 2013. Dennis and a friend were enjoying a day of fishing when the accident happened. It is not completely clear of what happened but they were both ejected from the boat. The passenger was wearing a life jacket and was able to make it to shore. Unfortunately Dennis was not and in an apparent attempt to retrieve the boat he succumb to the cold waters and drowned in Traflagar Bay.
Dennis was a graduate of Appleton City High School. After serving his country in the United States Army he worked various jobs in Kansas City before finding his true calling. Dennis has been employed with Gunflint Lodge for the past 25 years as a fishing guide. It was apparent to many repeat customers that Dennis had a true passion, he loved to fish. “Bobber down” was soon echoed throughout the Midwest from those who were fortunate enough to go north fishing with the “Walleye Jedi”.
Friends and family alike enjoyed fish fries at Dennis’ and he was always able to provide someone with fresh fish. Dennis was quick with a joke or story and always had a helping hand for anyone that was in need of one.
Dennis was born to Raymond and Betty (Harris) Todd on February 12, 1954 in Appleton City, Mo. He was proceeded in death by his father Raymond and an infant sister Janet.
Dennis is survived by his son Cameron and step-daughter Laura (Scott) Campbell, his mother Betty Todd of Appleton City, sister Judy (Steve) Adams Bloomfield IA, brother Dave (Lisa) Todd Butler, nephews Matt Brownsberger, Brian and Kyle Todd, and four grandchildren. Many cousins and friends as well.
Memorial gifts may be sent to the Cameron Todd Educational Trust Fund at the Community First Banks in Butler and Appleton City Mo.
Tomorrow, Friday, trail groomers will be out on the west end of the Banadad. The east end will be groomed the next day.
Tomorrow it is also going to warm up to above zero for the first time in days. Last night/this morning the temperature hit negative 36.
Day 12 – The Last Day of Gifting….
Today is the 12th Day of Gifting! Can you believe it? Tomorrow is the last Elfin’ Saturday before Christmas! On this final day, we thought long and hard on who we would feature. He or She had to be a slam bang finish to a truly incredible list of artists. I think you will all agree, we could not have chosen a better artist for Day 12. With great pleasure, I introduce … read more
Day 11 – Glass Totems & Raku
On Day 11 of our 12 Days of Gifting, we bring you Nancy Seaton‘s Fused Glass Totems and Richard Gruchalla & Carrin Rosetti’s Raku fired pottery!
Most notorious for her watercolors, Nancy Seaton expanded to beautiful fused glass totems in the early spring of 2013. When put near the window, these totems come to life. With the unique designs and gorgeous colors dancing in the light, her totems are a … read more
Day 10– Monica Hansmeyer
On Day 10 of the 12 Days of Gifting, we introduce the jeweler responsible for all of our jewelry dreams… Monica Hansmeyer of Seven Sister Design!
Monica Hansmeyer is just plain… COOL! If you have had the pleasure to meet the woman behind Seven Sister Design, you know what I mean. With a friendly smile, farm girl charm and jewelry to die for, it’s easy to see why her jewelry has more devoted fans than we can … read more
Day 9 – Wood ya Look at THAT?
Day 9 is focused on wood, wood-like products, faux wood painting, birch ceramic mugs…. You get the idea! In this day of Wood, let me mention the three groups of artists to be highlighted; Larch Wood, Grant-Noren, and Lenore Lampi.
Larch Wood, based in Nova Scotia, specializes in “end-grain” cutting boards that are praised as works of functional art. Their small, select group of crafts people work exclusively with the native Eastern Canadian … read more
Did you really think we would do a “12 days of Gifting” without mentioning Rick Allen and Marian Lansky of Kenspeckle Letterpress??
I didn’t think so….
As you all know, Rick Allen is possibly Siiviis and Sivertson Gallery’s most popular artist. Without a doubt, he is certainly the most hilarious! His work brings happiness, love and laughter to all… Truly a wonderful gift to give this holiday season.
Bear Ass Sauna
Trapper’s Daughter and the Long View
Grand … read more
Day 7 – Hot Tea and Books!
Shiver me Elfin’ timbers…. It is close to -20 below in some parts of Cook County on this 7th Day of Gifting!! In this spirit we bring you “Hot Tea and Beautiful Book Day!”
A favorite memory of many Sivertson shoppers is our year-round complementary hot tea. Right when you walk in the door, you can stop by our tea stand and choose from an assortment of delicious Harney and Sons blends. Over 30 years … read more
-Day 6 - Aaron Kloss & His Little Birds, Too
Day 6 – Kloss… and His Little Birds, Too!!
When I think of Aaron Kloss, I can’t help but think about his bird paintings. Whether they be cardinals, bluejays, or the recent release of Chickadees... I just can’t get enough.
Just a couple of weeks ago we received a shipment of fresh, original acrylics by the one and only Aaron Kloss. This is a great thing for all you Christmas shoppers out there because that means, not … read more
-Day 5 - Bozeman Babes!
Our self proclaimed sister city of Bozeman, Montana is full of talented artists. Here at Sivertson Gallery, we host the work of two of the greatest ladies Bozeman has to offer! Jennifer (J.L. Walsh) the fabulous jeweler, and Sarah Angst the amazing printer.
If there is any town that could even remotely compare to our beloved harbor town of Grand Marais, it would be Bozeman, MT. Whenever I travel out west to that gorgeous town with … read more
-Day 4 - Woodblock Prints!
Wood block prints are in a class all of their own. There is something about the look, the feel, and the process of wood block prints, that is simply striking. At Sivertson Gallery, we have four woodblock artists represented: Nick Wroblewski, Betsy Bowen, Mike Anderson and Rick Allen (with Rick dabbling in both wood and lino block prints, in addition to wood engravings).
All of our printmakers are fantastic, but it seems that Nick Wroblewski is … read more
- Day 3 - Ananda Khalsa Jewelry!!
Ananda Khalsa’s jewelry does not require many words…. just. LOOK. at. it. and try not to drool all over your keyboard. If you really want to WOW someone special this holiday season, you need to consider Khalsa’s jewelry. It’s true, many women tell us they feel strong and elegant while wearing her jewelry, myself included. When you find jewelry with this much character and energy, it’s important … read more
~Day Two~ Lake Superior… EVERYTHING!!!
How can you give a gift of the North Shore, for the heart and soul, all year round?? Through ART of course! At Sivertson Gallery and Siiviis we have countless options to fill your Lake Superior fancy: photographs, prints, broadsheets, earrings, paintings, cards and more!
One of our most popular gifts this holiday season is Rick Allen’s “Superior is a Sea” broadsheet. Released just before the Tall … read more
The Twelve Days of Sivertson Gift Giving!
Tis the season to be artsy in your gift giving! Here at Sivertson Gallery and Siiviis we are counting down the 12 days until our “Last Elfin’ Saturday Before Christmas” party on December 21st. Check your email, visit our facebook page and read our blog each day for our 12 days of Up North gift ideas from Sivertson Gallery!
~Day One~ MOOSE PRINTS by Liz Sivertson