Hundreds of kids and parents enjoyed the sights, sounds, food and prizes featured at the 32nd Halloween Carnival on Saturday at Maple Lake Elementary. Over 5,000 game tickets were sold for this year's event.
There was plenty to see and do at the annual carnival coordinated by Partners In Education. Among the contest winners were:
Brady Tongen, who guessed the exact weight of the pumpkin donated by Dave Stumpf at 117 lbs.
Tyler Weimer won the contest to guess the amount of candy corn in a jar, which was 988.
Blair Stewig won the contest to guess the amount of M&Ms in a jar. Her entry of 10,025 was closest to the actual amount of 9,665.
More information and photos appear in this weeks issue of the Messenger.
The long-awaited Ney Park Bike-Pedestrian Trail is back on track after weeks of delays due to the record rainfalls this late summer and early fall.
"The whole ditch carries water," said Jerry Liebhard, project manager for Mid-Minnesota Hot Mix, winner of the construction bid for this part of the trail. "A lot of it is still wet. We were able to start up again last Tuesday (Oct. 23) and plan on paving next Thursday (Nov. 1)."
The end product will be a ten-foot wide bituminous trail that required stripping the top soil and excavating several inches of clay before adding granulated borrow, a sandy substance similar to pit run, and finally, class five and asphalt.
The trail head, currently under construction, begins just south of Cty. Rd. 37 near Kramer Sales and runs along the east side of Cty. Rd. 8. Eventually the trail will lead into and through Ney park.
More information appears in this weeks issue of the Messenger.
The Maple Lake School District will find out if 'third time's a charm' when the voters go to the polls on Nov. 6 to pass judgement on two referendum questions.
In November of last year and in February of 2007, voters narrowly rejected referendums aimed primarily at addressing space concerns at Maple Lake Elementary.
In a public meeting in the Maple Lake High School auditorium on Monday, Superintendent Mark Redemske provided information on the third try at a construction referendum.
Redemske said needs to be addressed with the proposed project are additional classroom space, special education space, storage, safety and maintenance items and the need for more space in the elementary cafeteria and for physical education.
With the new Wright County Jail project already in full swing, it was expected that the county would be bonding for the project at some point during the 2007 calendar year. At the Oct. 16 meeting of the Wright County Board, that day was upon the commissioners, who approved a $53 million bond issue.
Bruce Kimmel of the financial firm Springsted Financial Advisers presented the board with a proposed $53.57 million bond issue and said that the county will likely get competitive bidding from throughout the country due to the size and ability to repay the bond that the county has with its strong credit rating.
"Because of the size of the project, we're expecting bids not just from Twin Cities investment banks, but investment banks from throughout the country," Kimmel said. "These are the types of projects that get a lot of interest, so the bidding should be very competitive."
A much anticipated hunting trip between five young men, all members of the Maple Lake Class of 2005, ended almost before it began on a slick North Dakota highway.
Craig Couette, driving the family 1-ton, 4-door Ford pickup truck, left Maple Lake on the evening of Tuesday, October 16, with passenger, Brian Puncochar.
The duo headed for Staples, Minnesota, where they picked up Tony Elfmann, who was just beginning his mid-term break from Central Lakes College. Twenty miles further on in Wadena, Dan Rassat joined the group, taking time off from a lineman's program at Wadena Technical College. The four young men headed to Fargo to spend the night at the home of the last member of the group, Cody Decker.
Early the next morning the group headed north toward the Canadian border hoping to check out the area they'd chosen to start their duck and goose hunt.
The recent loss of a friend has moved a local church group to cancel an annual festival so that they might reach out and help others.
The ladies' quilting group of Holy Cross Lutheran Church has been meeting since 1992, the same year as the establishment of the church. Although they've seen their ranks swell and diminish, they've remained true to their mission, to make quilts.
It was due, at least in part, to the recent loss of member Jeanette Holt, "our wonderful and precious friend," that the ladies decided to forego their annual Fall Bazaar and instead make quilts to send to flood victims in the St. Charles and Rushford areas of southern Minnesota.
Joyce Traczyk, a member of the group, has connections to the flooded area through her daughter's in-laws, Charl and Fred Swiggum.
At a time when Wright County is trying to increase the lines of communication between itself and cities and townships in the county, especially as it pertains to planning and zoning activities, the Oct. 9 meeting of the county board saw the commissioners approving the hiring of legal counsel for a potential court battle with Corinna Township.
The decision came from a committee meeting following the Oct. 2 board meeting - a meeting that county officials wanted closed because of the potential for litigation. But, after complaints from media outlets asking the meeting be open, the county acquiesced and it was learned how far the two sides are apart.
With the October 1st enforcement date for the new Freedom to Breathe (FTB) Act just past, there's apt to be a lot of ashtrays up for grabs in Minnesota.
"The sign just came to me," said Lynette Pettit, co-owner of the Maple Lake Bowl. '"Ash Trays for Sale." "We've gotten quite a few comments on it. But what are you going to do, it's the law. The way we look at it change is difficult for all of us. After a while you get used to it and live with it."
The FTB act, an expansion of the current Minnesota Clean Indoor Air Act, was signed into law by Gov. Tim Pawlenty in May and prohibits all smoking within any Minnesota workplace as of October 1.
Intended to protect employees and the public from the health hazards of second-hand smoke the new act is changing the landscape, or at least the smell, of several Maple Lake businesses.
Seeing is believing and it just takes a look into the Maple Lake High School gym to believe that Irish pride is on the rise.
Now hanging in the gym are 47 conference championship banners, nine subsection championship banners and six state team participant banners for a total of 62 reasons why the Irish can be proud of their sports history.