News

Wed
14
May

Divers come up empty in search for Joshua

A Stearns County Sheriff’s Department search effort focusing on Stumpf Lake at the St. John’s campus yielded no clues in the disappearance of Joshua Guimond.

This search effort began at the end of April when dogs from North Star Search and Rescue and Canine Search Services spent seven hours tracking around the Stumpf Lake area. Stumpf Lake was on the path Joshua would have taken to return to his campus apartment on November 9 and has been the focus of much of the Sheriff’s Department search activity.

In addition to the dogs, a sonar unit operated by Ken Anderson of Emergency Support Services was also used on Stumpf Lake. Dragging of the lake was undertaken on April 29, and on May 8, Stearns and Benton County Sheriff’s Department divers spent just over an hour exploring areas of interest designated earlier by the dogs and sonar crew.

Wed
07
May

MLHS teacher honored by Wal-Mart

MLHS teacher Mike Hojnacke received a certificate from Buffalo Wal-Mart Community involvement coordinator Deb Helmbrecht, designating him as the Teacher of the Year Runner-Up for Wright County.

Each Wal-Mart store selects a teacher of the year determined from nomination forms submitted by students. Helmbrecht said hundreds of nominations were received for this year’s honors, but she said winners are not selected on the basis of the number of votes received, but on the attributes listed in the nominations.

Hojnacke was described by his students as “more than dedicated.”

“He goes above and beyond for his students, coming in early and staying late to help students. He even sacrifices his lunch hour to stay in his room and help students with any questions.

“Mr. Hojnacke is the most dedicated teacher I have ever known. He goes way beyond the extra mile.”

Wed
07
May

MLHS graduate sees duty in Kuwait

Dawnal Meyer, a 2000 graduate of Maple Lake High School, is currently stationed in Kuwait.

According to her mother and stepfather, Katheleen and Gary Miller, Meyer left in early April as an Army Specialist in charge of medical supplies.

Katheleen said a recent letter from Dawnal provided a look inside life for the service men and women in the Middle East  “Dawnal said that they are working all the time,” Katheleen said. “She said it is a good experience because you learn just how tough a person is. They try to stop in the hottest part of the day and find shade. The water, which they try to drink as much as possible, is hot.

“She says the people there are all working soooo hard and she’s very proud.”

Wed
07
May

Comprehensive Plan looks at the city of the future

What should the City of Maple Lake look like in the future? That was the question for the city council on April 30 as work moved forward on development of the city’s Comprehensive Plan.

City consultant Dean Johnson of Resource Strategies, led the council through a series of maps and figures intended to represent how Maple Lake might grow in the next 20 years.

Johnson presented the council with various scenarios for growth and how the city could control that growth through designating land uses and housing densities. He asked the council that it consider a housing category it does not currently have, Mixed Residential, which would allow a variety of housing types.

“I recommend Mixed Residential,” he said. “It’s better that the developer have the flexibility of determining those units. They tend to design the development better than we would.”

Wed
30
Apr

Wright County 4-H Clubs gather donations for military families

A program at the Maple Lake VFW on Sunday brought together 4-H Clubs from across the county in an effort to provide aid to the families of military personnel.

The program was the conclusion of an effort initiated by Michele Pawelk of the Chatham Climbers 4-H Club for the Key Volunteer Network, a program through Fort Snelling that helps military families in Minnesota by collecting gift certificates that can be used by the families at statewide businesses such as Cub Foods and Target.

Kathy Wald, Debbie Kalina and Master Gunnery Sergeant Wald, representing the Key Volunteer program, expressed their appreciation for the $3,570 in donated gift certificates collected by the county’s 4-H groups. “And I’d like to thank Michelle Pawelk, without whose vision, commitment and determination we would not be here today,” Kalina said.

Wed
30
Apr

Mark Pavlik to be ordained May 31

Rev. Mr. Mark Pavlik, having completed priestly formation at the Saint Paul Seminary School of Divinity of the University of St. Thomas, Saint Paul, will be ordained to the priesthood for the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis on May 31, 10 a.m., at the St. Paul Cathedral in St. Paul. He will be ordained by the Most Reverend Harry J. Flynn, Archbishop of Saint Paul and Minneapolis.

A native of Maple Lake, his parents are Gaylord and Margaret Pavlik of Maple Lake. His Mass of Thanksgiving will be at 10 a.m. on June 1 in the parish of St. Timothy in Maple Lake.

Wed
30
Apr

Dogs used again in search for Joshua Guimond

After an appeal made by the family of Joshua Guimond to the Stearns County Board of Commissioners earlier this month, the search for the missing St. John’s junior resumed this week with a considerable amount of activity.

On Sunday, dogs from North Star Search and Rescue and Canine Search Services were brought in by the Stearns County Sheriff’s Department for seven hours of tracking around the Stumpf Lake area. Stumpf Lake was on the path Joshua would have taken to return to his campus apartment on November 9 and has been the focus of much of the Sheriff’s Department search activity.

In addition to the dogs, a sonar unit operated by Ken Anderson of Emergency Support Services was also used on Stumpf Lake.

Joshua’s father, Brian, said the results of Sunday’s effort were inconclusive. “The dogs were showing interest,” he said. “But the sonar didn’t find anything that they would put divers in for.”

Wed
30
Apr

Maple Lake junior dies in Sunday morning accident

Chris Schneider, a 17-year-old junior at Maple Lake High School, died in a one-car accident on Sunday morning as he was returning home after a long talk with his girlfriend following the MLHS prom and prom party.

According to the Wright County Sheriff’s Department, the accident was reported at 8:50 a.m. at the intersection of County Road 8 and County Road 39 in Silver Creek Township.

Initial investigation indicates that Schneider was traveling northbound on County Road 8 when his 1999 Ford truck left the roadway and entered into the west ditch where it rolled. The vehicle then proceeded eastbound, crossing over County Road 8 and entering a 10-acre pond.

Wed
23
Apr

Larry Paumen dies from crash injuries

Larry Paumen, 45, a former Maple Lake businessman and lifelong resident of the area, died on Sunday from injuries he suffered in a motorcycle accident on April 10.

According to a report from the Wright County Sheriff, Paumen was traveling northbound on County Road 8 when he left the roadway just north of County Road 106 and rolled his 1994 Harley Davidson motorcycle. Emergency personnel from the Maple Lake Fire Department provided emergency treatment and transported Paumen to the Maple Lake High School parking lot, where he was airlifted to North Memorial Hospital.

Wed
23
Apr

Stearns County to step up search for Joshua

A second meeting with the Stearns County Board of Commissioners on April 15 may have achieved additional help in the search for Joshua Guimond.

Two weeks ago, the family of Joshua, a St. John’s college student missing since November 9, asked the Stearns County Board to bring in the Trident Foundation aquatic investigative team from Colorado to search three lakes on the St. John’s campus.

According to Brian Guimond, Joshua’s father, the board left the decision to bring in the Trident team to Sheriff John Sanner. And a meeting with Sanner produced some positive results.

“Before we left there, Sanner said he was going to call in the Trident,” Brian said, noting that the sheriff also told the county board that divers would be sent in to Sagatagan Lake, where Guimond family members and friends had focused search efforts over the winter.

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