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Cook County Historical Society plans for the future

Mon, 11/18/2013 - 2:17pm

The Cook County Historical Society has just completed a long-range planning project for the Society's four historic sites in and around Grand Marais.
There will be an open house at the museum in downtown Grand Marais on Saturday, November 16th from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. to present the long range plans and seek volunteers to serve on task forces for each of the historic sites.

The sites include the Lighthouse Keeper's House (museum), Chippewa City Church, the Bally Blacksmith Shop, and the Replica Fish House and Fishing Tug "Neegee."

(Click on audio mp3 above to hear an interview with Carrie McHugh, Dick Gillyard, and Leah Thomas of the Cook County Historical Society.)
More information is available online at  

(Photo by jonathunder via wikimedia commons)

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Cooler dryer weather is in the week's forecast

Mon, 11/18/2013 - 11:32am

The week ahead promises to be dry and cooler. WTIPs Jay Andersen spoke with meteorologist Carol Christenson from the National Weather Service.

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Weekend News Roundup for November 16

Sat, 11/16/2013 - 11:02am

Each week the WTIP news staff puts together a roundup of the news over the past five days. The DNR is revising stream and lake management plans in the Grand Marais area. They also report on the wolf and deer seasons so far. Enbridge is reconsidering its pipeline route and scientists take another look at climate change and large animals…all in this week’s news.


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Community groups join forces for November 14 “Give to the Max Day”

Wed, 11/13/2013 - 4:24pm

The nonprofits of Cook County are small handful of the many organizations throughout the state that will once again ask Minnesotans to display their record-breaking generosity by donating to their favorite causes and schools online at during the fifth annual “Give to the Max Day” on November 14.

Give to the Max Day is important as it emphasizes the spirit and generosity of Minnesotans and their support of the work of the non-profits in our state,” explained Deb Benedict, executive director at WTIP North Shore Community Radio.

Money donated to participating nonprofits will directly benefit their individual missions and strengthen their diverse services offered across the North Shore. From health care to education, arts and culture to youth services—all Minnesota-based nonprofits and registered public schools listed on are eligible to receive donations.

“It’s an exciting day of philanthropy and this year, the nonprofits of Cook County are working hard to get the message out together,” explained Greg Wright, executive director of North House Folk School. “This is the chance to give to the community you love and the nonprofits that strive in many different ways to make the story of the North Shore even more inspiring.”

Cook County Historical Society--planning for Bally Blacksmith Shop and more

Wed, 11/13/2013 - 4:23pm

Since Cook County purchased the historic Bally’s Blacksmith Shop in August 2013, great strides have been made toward funding restoration of the building, thanks to many generous donations. Museum Director Carrie McHugh was happy to visit with the Cook County News-Herald about plans for the building after the historical society board accepted the latest donation of $5,000 from the Grand Marais Lions Club on Tuesday, November 5, 2013.
The Lions Club donation brings the total raised for the historical society’s Bally Blacksmith Shop fund to $16,000. Much of the money was donated to the Eric Thomas Memorial Fund, in honor of the Cook County High School Class of 1975 graduate who died May 15, 2013 and whose family earmarked memorials for the old blacksmith shop.
The long range goal is clean out the shop on Broadway Avenue, as well as the more modern metal building behind it, and to stabilize the old wooden building so it can be open to the public as an interpretive site. However, that will take some time, said McHugh.
And funding. The historical society has applied for two grants. If received, the first grant from the Minnesota Historical Society Legacy funds would be used to hire someone to create an inventory of all the items inside the two buildings. “They are packed full of stuff,” said McHugh.
Once all the materials are cataloged and appropriately stored, the historical society hopes to stabilize the old building. Doug Seim of Artikos Construction has completed a scope of work for the blacksmith shop, identifying historically appropriate ways to restore the building—its roof, chimney, siding, a loft in the interior. The historical society has applied for a grant from the Iron Range Resources & Rehabilitation for that work.

Change of venue granted in Scannell case

Tue, 11/12/2013 - 1:02pm

Cook County Attorney Tim Scannell appeared in court this morning in Grand Marais for a Rule 8 hearing, after being indicted on Thursday, October 31, on two counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct. The hearing comes several months after the Attorney was accused of an inappropriate relationship with a 17-year-old girl.
Attorney Joe Tamburino represented Scannell at the hearing. Tamburino asked for the next court date to occur sometime in January. 6th Judicial District Chief Judge Shaun Floerke presided over the hearing. Floerke denied the two previous motions by the defense, including a request to dismiss the indictment, as well as a request that no 6th district judges preside over the case.
The defense and prosecution requested a change of venue to Duluth at the hearing. The prosecution also asked the judge to continue the conditions of release, including no contact with witnesses about the case.
Floerke granted the change of venue and the prosecution’s request. The judge also stated that they would convene at a later date to determine the following court date, which will occur in January.

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