March 2013

Tue
19
Mar
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Snow days piling up; school now extended to June 6

When that first snow day of the school year comes, students are generally happy they can sleep in, then spend the day idling away the unexpected freedom however they please.

But now that spring is approaching, and the end of school, missed days are getting to be exasperating rather than fun. For each missed day means one more day into June that students will be sitting in the classroom.

For parents with small children, the missed days mean another day making arrangements for babysitting so they don’t have to miss work. In some cases, it does mean staying home from work and losing that day’s paycheck or a day’s vacation.

So far this winter, students have lost seven days to blizzards, extreme cold, and ice. Those missed days mean going to school until Thursday, June 6.

Tue
19
Mar
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Federal government sequester could cost county about $250,000

If all the cuts required by the federal government’s sequester impasse are eventually implemented, it could mean the loss of as much as $250,000 in grants and funding for Swift County.

That is a rough estimate given to the board of commissioners at their meeting March 5 by Administrator Michel Pogge-Weaver – though he admits that it is very early to be projecting the impact.  Pogge-Weaver asked the county department heads to let him know what the sequester’s impact would be on their departments.

He expects the impacts to be very small in the next 60 to 90 days.

Human Services would be the department to see the quickest impact with its client services programs affected. Some funding for child support services in the county attorney’s office would see cuts.  The highway department shouldn’t see an impact in 2013 since those funds are already encumbered. But in 2014 there would be an impact, he said. The Veterans’ Services area should not see cuts.

Tue
19
Mar
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March 2012 and 2013 see very different temps; St. Patrick's Day revelers keep the smiles

During the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, Saturday, March 17, 2012, people lining the parade route were wearing t-shirts and shorts. The temperature was nearing 80 degrees.

Just the day before the high had hit 79 degrees setting an all-time record high for the month. As it reached mid-afternoon and the parade began winding its way down 13th Street, the temperature again hit 79 degrees in Benson. A good-sized crowd lined both sides of the street with parents bringing their young children out to gather the candy that would be thrown from the floats.

What a contrast to the 2013 St. Patrick’s Day parade!

With the temperature at 10 degrees – 69 degrees colder than the previous year – the parade route had far fewer people willing to brave the cold, made even more frigid by a 15 mph wind out of the north. The days high of 27 degrees was shortly after midnight, after which it steadily declined.

Fri
15
Mar
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Benson schools closed; icy conditions hinder travel

The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for our area.

An upper-level disturbance will interact with a cold front on Friday to produce snow and mixed precipitation across parts of the northern Plains and Upper Midwest. Snowfall accumulations of 3 to 8 inches are expected from north-central North Dakota to west-central Wisconsin by Friday evening.

The seven day outlook for the greater Benson area is:
 

Mon
11
Mar
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Marvin Edward Zurn, age 90, of DeGraff

Marvin Edward Zurn, age 90, of DeGraff, died Thursday, March 7, 2013, at the Swift County Benson Hospital.     Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:00 A.M., Wednesday, March 13, 2013, at St. Bridget’s Catholic Church in DeGraff, with Father William Sprigler Officiating.  Visitation will be held Tuesday, March 12th from 4:00 – 7:00 P.M. at St. Bridget’s Catholic Church with a Parish Prayer Service at 4:00 P.M. and a Rosary at 6:30 P.M.  Visitation will continue for one hour prior to the service at the church.  Burial will be in the St. Bridget’s Catholic Cemetery.  Arrangements are with the Zniewski Funeral Home in Benson, MN.
    
Marvin Edward Zurn was born in Grace Township, Chippewa County, Minnesota to Effie Mae (Payne) and John William Zurn on January 24, 1923.  He was baptized and confirmed in the Catholic faith at St. Bridget’s Catholic Church and attended school in Grace Township.  He grew up and lived his entire life in Grace Township, Chippewa County.

Fri
08
Mar
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Hulda A. Johnson

Hulda A. Johnson, 88 of Benson, died Wednesday, March 6, 2013 at GlenOaks Care Center in New London.  Funeral services will be 2:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 12, 2013 at Our Redeemers Lutheran Church in Benson.  Visitation will be from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. Monday at the Church and also one hour prior to service.  Burial will be in the Benson City Cemetery.   Arrangements are with the Harvey Anderson and Johnson Funeral Home                                                     www.hafh.org
 

Thu
07
Mar
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Robert “Bob” Curtis Lachmiller

Robert “Bob” Curtis Lachmiller, age 85, of Clontarf, died Sunday, March 3, 2013, at the Glacial Ridge Health System in Glenwood.             Funeral services will be at 1:00 P.M., Thursday, March 7, 2013, at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Benson, with Rev. Dennis McManus Officiating.          Friends may call for one hour prior to the service.  Arrangements are with the Zniewski Funeral Home in Benson, MN.
    
Robert “Bob” Curtis Lachmiller was born in Good Thunder, MN to Lila (Kaul) and Frederick Lachmiller on July 17, 1927.  He was baptized at Immanuel Lutheran Church and grew up in Good Thunder attending Sterling Public School.  Bob served in the Korean War from 1950 - 1952 as a private first class and radio operator in the US Army.
 

Wed
06
Mar
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Benson’s Fire Department answers 62 calls in 2012

Fire Chief Mark Schreck, along with other members of the department, gave the Benson City Council an update on the 2012 fire year and a heads-up on its future equipment needs at a meeting Feb. 19.
With the above average snowfall this winter, fire departments around the state are hoping that the spring fire threat will be lowered. But a dry March and warm weather could rapidly dry out the grasses, raising the fire threat.
Last year, Benson’s Fire Department responded to 62 calls. Fourteen of those calls were structure fires with the most serious the home fire in Benson.

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