Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

Oshki Ogimaag raffle winners announced

Sat, 09/08/2012 - 10:19am

Oshki Ogimaag Charter School is $3,890 better off this year 
thanks to a raffle fundraiser that culminated in the K-1 classroom on 
September 4, the first day of school.
This is the first year the school has raised money this way.  Five 
hundred fifty-eight tickets were sold over the summer, bringing in 
The first-place winner, Donna McNamara of Minneapolis, won $2,790 -- 
half of the revenue from ticket sales.  She turned around and donated 
$500 of her winnings back to the school.  “We are very appreciative!” 
said Oshki Ogimaag Director Anna Deschampe.
Deschampe also expressed appreciation to Grand Portage Lodge & Casino 
and North Shore Dairy for donating the second- and third-place 
prizes.  Tony LaRose of the Twin Cities won the second-place prize, a 
two-night stay at Hollow Rock Resort.  Marie Morrin of Grand Portage 
won third prize, a gift certificate for $200 from North Shore Dairy.
The winning tickets were drawn from the drum by the K-1 students.
In addition to ticket sales, individuals and businesses donated $1,100
toward the cause.
Director Anna Deschampe said, “Thank you to everybody who 
participated.”  She expressed gratitude to Grand Portage Lodge & 
Casino, Grand Portage Trading Post, and Joynes Ben Franklin in Grand 
Marais for selling tickets, to those who sold tickets at community 
events throughout the summer, and to everyone who bought a ticket.
Deschampe hopes that the raffle will become a regular fundraiser for 
the school.  Up to 2,000 tickets were available this year, for a 
potential grand prize of $10,000.

Artists arriving for Grand Marais Art Colony Plein Air event

Fri, 09/07/2012 - 4:21pm

The 10th annual plein air competition and exhibition will be held Sept. 14 - 30 at the Grand Marais Art Colony. This wonderful event offers something for artists and art lovers alike. Although participants in the Plein Air competition will be painting around the community beginning on September 7, the event kicks off for the general public with an opening reception at the Grand Marais Art Colony on Friday, Sept. 14 from 5 to 7 p.m.
What is plein air? It is simply painting outdoors. Artists leave the studio and venture outside to celebrate the unique beauty of the North Shore landscape.  Visitors are invited to witness blank canvasses become exquisite moments in local history.  An exhibition sale of the week-long competition work will be on display from September 14 - 30 at the Grand Marais Art Colony.
A very interesting part of the event is the Quick Paint set for Sept. 13, from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Artist Point. Artists are given 90 minutes to complete a painting. Kjersti Vick of the Art Colony said, “With a shotgun start and the North Shore’s ever-changing weather, it is a spectacle to watch!”
Kids’ plein air instructions will be held Sept. 15 from 1 to 3 p.m. in Harbor Park. “Grandpa David” will teach youth the basics for creating a work of art. Participants are asked to bring a pencil and paper.
Plein Air Grand Marais is a great way to connect with the artistic community of the Grand Marais.  Vick said, “The reputation of this festival precedes itself, having become known as the best place to view and purchase a wide variety of local scenic paintings from acclaimed regional and national artists.”
For a detailed schedule of events and more information about Plein Air Grand Marais contact the Grand Marais Art Colony at (218) 387-2737.

Blood drive in Grand Marais Sept. 12 - schedule to donate today

Fri, 09/07/2012 - 4:20pm

Memorial Blood Centers has scheduled a stop to take blood donations in Cook County. Cornerstone Community Church in Grand Marais is sponsoring a blood drive at the church at 1 Cedar Grove Lane in Grand Marais, from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday, September 12. To schedule a donation time, contact Valerie at (218) 387-9026. According to the Memorial Blood Center, one blood donation can save as many as three lives. You can be a hero to someone through the simple act of donating blood, so call for an appointment today!

Leaves begin to change color in Minnesota

Fri, 09/07/2012 - 9:17am

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The leaves are just beginning to change color in Minnesota.

The Department of Natural Resources has started updating its fall color reports and maps at noon every Thursday. The reports include percentage of color change, peak color projections, flowers and grasses in bloom, and three parks considered "hot picks" of the week.

The DNR also offers fall colors "to go" on a mobile website designed for smart phones and tablets.

DNR forest health specialist Jana Albers says the fall colors are arriving right on schedule in northern Minnesota, and they're making their way south. She says splashes of color are everywhere.

Staffers at Minnesota's state parks and trails have planned a variety of family-oriented special programs and events to coincide with their projected peak color times.

Something for everyone at Radio Waves Music Festival this weekend!

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 2:56pm

It’s Radio Waves Music Festival time! This Saturday and Sunday, September 8 – 9 at Sweetheart’s Bluff at the Grand Marais Recreation Park campground, WTIP Community Radio will offer two days of music by local and regional artists.
In addition to the fabulous music, there will be fantastic food and children’s activities. Tickets are only $5 per day, available at the gate.
Radio Waves is offered in partnership with the North Shore Music Association.
Come on out and dance the weekend away!
See the complete lineup of music on the WTIP website at

Fall brings fire concerns

Thu, 09/06/2012 - 12:28pm

Cook County has been fortunate so far that recent lightning storms have not started fires as they have on the western section of Superior National Forest, where there are numerous small fires at this time.
There was a fire in Cook County, at Greenwood Lake on Friday, August 31. Cook County Law Enforcement received a report of a fire on a “small island on the northwest corner” of Greenwood Lake at 2:39 p.m. 
The Gunflint Trail Fire Department and the U.S. Forest Service all made it to the scene at 3:32 p.m. U.S. Forest Service Fire Management Officer (FMO) Patty Johnson said by the time fire crews reached the island it was “pretty much burned out.”
The island is about ¼ acre in size. The Forest Service continues to monitor the fire site from the air and with a ground crew.
As people head to the lakes and woods this fall, fire managers urge them to use caution by keeping campfires small—no more than three feet high by three feet across. People are advised to clear vegetation from around campfires, keep water available, attend the fire at all times, and make certain the fire is cold to the touch before leaving.
Better yet, said Johnson, don’t have a fire at all. “If it’s a hot windy day, just don’t have a fire,” she advised.
Fire conditions change quickly and fire restrictions are in place in some parts of the state. For more information and maps, and to check fire conditions, visit