Around Cook County
It’s been like September in November, but in the next few days it’s going to be all November. WTIP’s Jay Andersen spoke with National Weather Service meteorologist Carol Christenson.
The Cook County Vikings volleyball team is heading to the state tournament Thursday after defeating the Carlton Bulldogs in 4 sets at Duluth Denfield Saturday afternoon. The Vikings were down after the first set but came back to win the final 3. The scores of the games were Bulldogs 25-19, Vikings 25-18, 25-19, 25-23.
State tournament play begins Thursday at the Excel Energy Center in St. Paul. The brackets for this week’s Minnesota high school volleyball state tournament were released Sunday. Class A Section 7 champs Cook County didn’t receive a seed. At 25 and 0 the Vikings meet powerhouse and top-seeded Faribault Bethlehem Academy -- who are 23 and 7 at 1 p.m. Thursday. The Cardinals almost annually reach the championship match — they did so every year from 2002-09 — and won Class A titles every odd year from 2003 to 2011. They also won in 2012 and last year.
Thursday afternoon’s winner will play either Heritage Christian Academy or Verndale in the semifinals. The loser goes to the consolation semis.
WTIP will continue to bring you live broadcasts from the state tournament.
Photo courtesy of Cook County High School
Each week the WTIP news staff compiles a review of news from the previous five days. The financial impact of the arts in Cook County, news from Indian Country. Asian carp, Jim Oberstar honored, bad news at the ballot box and good news at the post office.…all this and more in the week’s news.
The Cook County Broadband Commission (CCBC) continues to work to find public access “hot” spots,” to establish co-working facilities for community members and visitors and to enable the use of teleconferencing in the county. The work to date has been funded by a Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities grant from the Blandin Foundation. At the Tuesday, October 27, county board meeting, Broadband Commission Chair Bob Pranis asked if the county would pay $700 for one member of the broadband commission to attend a Blandin Foundation Broadband Conference in November.
The county board seemed agreeable, noting that this was valuable training and a networking opportunity, but questioned whether this fit in the county’s travel reimbursement policy. The request was tabled until the Nov. 10 meeting so it can be determined where the funds for the request would come from.
The county board approved a similar request in 2014 from then-Broadband Commission Chair Paul Harvey for up to $750 toward the Blandin Foundation Broadband Commission Conference in Brainerd in November 2014.
In June 2015, Pranis came before the county board with two requests. The first was to ask the county to act as CCBC’s fiscal agent if it is awarded a grant from the Blandin Foundation and the second was to ask approval to be listed as one of the potential sources for funding the match to the grant.
Pranis explained that in 2008, Cook County was selected by the Blandin Foundation to receive the Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities Grants of $100,000. He said that grant enabled the CCBC to implement a wide range of projects related to broadband that are still active in the community.
Another grant is now available, He said, up to $25,000 with a match of 25 percent or $8,500.
Residents and visitors to Grand Marais have been delighted to become famous as the “Coolest Small Town in America,” according to Budget Travel magazine. Now another—more local—publication has cast acclaim on several special places in Cook County. Lake Superior Magazine announced its annual “Best of the Lake” contest in September 2015.
The magazine asks readers in Minnesota, Ontario, Michigan and Wisconsin to vote for their favorites in 12 different categories from Best Restaurant to Best Beach. Cook County had many “winners” and at least a “runner-up” in each category in Minnesota.
Lake Superior Magazine expressed thanks to the more than 650 print magazine readers, website followers and fans of area establishments who cast their votes by mail or online.
Some local establishments, like historic Naniboujou Lodge in Hovland were recognized more than once. Naniboujou was declared the Best Restaurant and the Best Resort/Hotel.
Another Hovland landmark, the Judge C.R. Magney State Park—home to the Devil’s Kettle on the Brule River—received recognition in both the Best Campground and Best Park categories.
The top vote getters are noted with a *. Arrowhead area honorees are:
* Naniboujou Lodge & Restaurant, Hovland
Angry Trout Café, Grand Marais
* Grand Marais Campground & Marina
Judge C.R. Magney State Park
* Sven & Ole’s, Grand Marais
* Naniboujou Lodge & Restaurant, Grand Marais
Best weekend destination
* Grand Marais
* Gooseberry Falls State Park
Judge C.R. Magney State Park
The final environmental review for Minnesota’s proposed PolyMet copper-nickel mine says wastewater from the project would have to be treated indefinitely to prevent pollution, the Associated Press reports.
The 3,500-page document released Friday by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources also says developers would have to put up money to make sure that all cleanup costs are covered after the mine closes. The exact amount and form of those financial assurances would be determined during any the permitting process.
In what is perhaps most noteworthy to residents in Cook County and the surrounding region, the document also says mine runoff would not reach the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness or Voyageurs National Park.
The release of the report by the DNR starts a 30-day public comment period. The agency will determine early next year whether the review is adequate. Then the company can start applying for permits.
PolyMet proposes to develop an open-pit mine and processing facilities for the extraction of copper, nickel and platinum elements, with an estimated 20-year lifespan for mine operations.
“The co-lead agencies have brought the highest level of rigor and objectivity to the NorthMet environmental review,” said DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr. “Our responsibility is to conduct a neutral evaluation based on information from the company, our own analysis, and the comments we receive. The process has been thoughtful, independent and thorough.”