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News and other information from Cook County

Library Director Linda Chappell to retire at end of March

Sun, 02/23/2014 - 2:44pm

At the Feb. 12 city council meeting, city councilors accepted, with regrets, longtime Grand Marais Public Library Director Linda Chappell’s letter of resignation. Chappell has served as director of the library since 1991, when she replaced Mary Alice Harvey.

Chappell recalled that she worked at the library in other positions since about 1977 with a two-year break in 1979 when her son was born. Her tenure dates back to the time when the library was located up the hill, where George Maruska’s accounting office is now located.

Chappell said in her letter to council that she plans to retire at the end of March.

Because her last day will be at the end of March – little more than a month away – City Administrator Mike Roth said the council should begin a search for a new director immediately. “It’s extremely unlikely we’ll have a new director in place by then [end of March],” said Roth, “but there’s a great staff there to fill in.”

City councilor and library board member Jan Sivertson said volunteered to serve on the search committee along with Mayor Larry Carlson and three members of the library board. In the meantime, Roth said the job description will be updated and the position advertised in advance of interviews which will be conducted by the search committee.

"Best in Snow" skjor race coming up March 1

Sun, 02/23/2014 - 2:42pm

Go Dog North Shore is pleased to announce the first ever “Best in Snow Skijor Race” to be held March 1 at the George Washington Pines Ski Trail outside of Grand Marais.

The “Best in Snow Skijor Race” is a fun event that celebrates our relationships with our dogs, encourages us to live active lifestyles with our dogs, utilizes local dog-friendly ski trails, promotes the sport of skijoring and fosters partnerships with local business’s, nonprofits, government agencies and individuals. 

The event will feature two timed races: a two-mile race and a four-mile race.  Each will be capped at 15 teams. Teams are limited to one dog per skier and there is a $25 entry fee required per team, per race.

The “Best in Snow Skijor Race” will be held in conjunction with the Sawtooth Mountain Clinic’s communitywide active living campaign “Move It” during the month of February. Local skijorers are encouraged to participate in “Move It” as a way to prepare for the “Best in Snow Skijor Race.”  Prizes will be awarded to the top teams in each race. 

Skijoring is a winter sport where a person on cross-country skis is pulled by a dog.

Go Dog North Shore is a new nonprofit organization based in Grand Marais that aims to promote healthy and active human and dog relationships on Minnesota’s North Shore of Lake Superior. More information about Go Dog North Shore is available online at 

“Best in Snow Skijor Race” information, including details on registration and volunteer opportunities, is available from Cathy Quinn at  (218) 370-9494  or via email at 

Weekend News Roundup for February 22

Sat, 02/22/2014 - 10:18am

Each week the WTIP news team puts together a roundup of the week's news. Eagles nesting, moose counted, more kids graduating and hard drugs on Duluth streets…all in this week’s news.


Attached file

North Shore Hospital to work with DSGW Architects on remodel and renovation plans

Thu, 02/20/2014 - 11:25am

After three hours and lots of questions from the Cook County North Shore Hospital Board to hospital administrator Kimber Wraalstad the board asked Wraalstad to enter into negotiations with DSGW Architects to draw plans for a remodel and renovation of the 16-bed critical access hospital and 37-bed skilled nursing care center.

The estimated cost for the work is $20 million, but Wraalstad said that other than the current levy of  $800,000, none of the money would come from county residents in the form of more taxes or increased levy.

The meeting took place at the hospital boardroom on Monday, February 11, 2014.

Open lunch policy at ISD 166 to end?

Wed, 02/19/2014 - 12:54pm

The possibility of ending School District 166's open lunch policy was  discussed at the Feb. 6 school board meeting. The policy currently allows juniors and seniors in good academic standing to leave the campus during the lunch period. Schwarz conducted a survey of 13 area schools and found that five of the schools, including CCHS, currently allow some students to leave campus during lunch. The main issues are safety and liability.

ORB Management presents "close-out" information for Cook County Community YMCA project

Tue, 02/18/2014 - 10:23am

At the Feb. 11 meeting of the Cook County Board of Commissioners, Wade Cole of ORB Management presented a “close-out letter” detailing the firm’s work on the Cook County Community YMCA project and a list of remaining issues that are being dealt with by contractors.

Items on the list include installation of window tinting film at the pool; adjustment or replacement of shower heads and arms; floor mat placement in the locker rooms; replacement of sauna lights; installation and certification of pool slide railings; adjustment of HVAC controls; and removal of brown streaks on the walls at the pool which Cole said are “a bit of a mystery.”

In addition, Cole said there is a problem with concrete flaking at the ice rink, which can only be solved after the dasher boards are removed, presumably in the spring.

The county board thanked Cole for all of his work and dedication to the project and voted to pay ORB $75,000 from the unallocated 1 percent funds to make up for a $32,253 shortage in the contingency fund and pay unbilled hours which date back to 2012.

The payment leaves just under $400,000 of uncommitted funds remaining from the $20 million total.