Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

Sheriff Falk to take early retirement

Fri, 05/09/2014 - 9:38am

Cook County Sheriff Mark Falk has decided to retire June 30 instead of waiting until his term is completed. Falk previously announced he was not seeking reelection. He cites “sweeping changes” in the Public Employees Retirement Association (PERA) police and fire fund which would significantly reduce his deferred pension if he remains in office as of July 1.

In a letter to the County Commissioners, Falk acknowledges it is the board’s responsibility to appoint his replacement until the end of his term in January of 2015. He recommended Chief Deputy Leif Lunde to that position. Lunde has held the Chief Deputy position since February 2005.

Both Lunde and Deputy Pat Eliason have announced their intentions to run for Cook County Sheriff in the November election.


Enjoy an elegant evening at "Gala for the Grove" May 17

Fri, 05/09/2014 - 7:57am

This year’s “Gala for the Grove” will be held May 17, beginning at 5 p.m. The affair is a semi-formal event in the Lakeside Ballroom at Surfside on Lake Superior, held annually to benefit Birch Grove Community School.

The evening’s events begin at 5 p.m. with a champagne social  featuring appetizers and champagne. Participants may browse items to be auctioned and purchase tickets for items in the drawing. A cash bar is available all evening.

At 6:30 p.m., dinner and wine will be served. Dinner choices include salad, bread, seasonal vegetables and choice of fillet mignon and herb roasted potatoes; roasted chicken breast and wild rice pilaf; grilled portabella mushroom with artichoke stuffing and wild rice pilaf; and a variety of delicious desserts. Drawings will take place during the latter part of dinner.

The Gala concludes with a live auction at 7:30 p.m.

Call Birch Grove Community School at (218) 663-0170 for tickets, which are $60 each, or for more information. Sponsorships are also available.


"Success Strategies for the Effective Leader" coming to Cook County Higher Education

Fri, 05/09/2014 - 7:50am

The Cook County Chamber of Commerce, Cook County Higher Education and the Cook County - Grand Marais Economic Development Authority’s Small Business Development Center office have joined forces to offer two six-week management leadership courses, Success Strategies for the Effective Leader, beginning this spring. One course will be for newer supervisors and managers. The other will be for more experienced managers, business owners and operators. Underwriting and scholarships make this training easy on the pocketbook.

Each course will involve six four-hour sessions, taught by Inez Wildwood of Lake Superior College. Wildwood has extensive experience in management training and currently serves as chair of the Governor’s Workforce Development Council. Her previous work included 15 years with Allete, Inc., the parent company of Minnesota Power, where she served in a succession of management positions, including talent acquisition and development, workforce planning and development, and employee relations.

The course for newer managers will begin Tuesday, May 20. The course for more experienced managers will begin Wednesday, May 21. For each course, three weekly sessions will be offered this spring, before the busy summer season fully gets under way. Another three sessions will be offered in the fall.

Cost of the course has been reduced to $300 per participant through a contribution from the Chamber of Commerce. Space is limited.

More information on this excellent manager leadership training opportunity is available from Higher Ed at (218) 387-3411 or email Information also is available on the Higher Ed website,

Youths should take ATV safety now for a safe summer

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 7:10pm

The Cook County ATV Club reminds parents that an ATV Safety Training course is available in May for students, ages 11 - 15. Sign up now for a safe summer!

The course is part independent study and part field test. When students sign up, they receive a Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) CD to study for the written test and field test.

A review and the written test will held Wednesday, May 14 at 3:45 p.m. in Cook County High School room 222. After passing the test, students participate in a field test, Saturday, May 17 at 9 a.m. at the old Grand Marais airport site (by Devil Track Landing).

There is a $10 fee, payable to Community Education. The Cook County ATV Club provides scholarships to any youths who cannot pay the fee. All students who successfully complete the safety training will also be treated to a pizza party with the DNR and volunteer instructors and will receive an ATV club T-shirt.

Safety Instructor Dick Parker encouraged parents to have their kids take this course. “Statistics show that 47 percent of all persons involved in ATV accidents are in their teens, 10-19 years old. The major cause of accidents is rollovers and hitting fixed objects. Speed is frequently the cause,” said Parker. “That’s why it is so important to catch kids when they are young to teach them about safe and ethical riding.”

“Just because you don’t own an ATV doesn’t mean your kid doesn’t need the training,” said Safety Instructor Chuck Silence. “There are more ATVs in the state than snowmobiles—you want them to be prepared to ride just in case they have the chance at a neighbor or friend’s house.”

Call (218) 387-2000 for more information. All registration forms and payment must be returned to Community Education by May 8.


ATV Safety Instructor Chuck Silence talks about the upcoming DNR Youth ATV Safety Training Course

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 9:41am

During the month of May, the DNR holds a Youth ATV Safety Training Course for students from the ages of 12-15. One of the instructors of the course, Chuck Silence, talks about the importance of ATV safety in this interview.


Attached file

First "saltie" delayed by ice

Wed, 05/07/2014 - 7:16am

Having encountered significant ice issues in transiting Lake Superior, the arrival of the Port of Duluth-
Superior's first saltie of the season has been delayed by at least 12 hours.

New ETA for the Diana is now closer to 8 p.m. tonight rather than this morning as noted below.  As such, any kind of official welcoming ceremony will be rescheduled for tomorrow or Friday.