March 2017

Fri
24
Mar
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Redhead Creamery - Unique gem

Alise Sjostrom started the Redhead Creamery and runs it along with her sister Maggie Jennissen.

I can’t wait to go back! The Redhead Creamery near Brooten is warm and welcoming. When you meet Alise, you will remember meeting her: Huge smile, red hair and a warm laugh.

It was Alise who had the vision for the Redhead creamery. After three years they are still growing and developing. She grew up on the dairy farm, in which the creamery now stands.

What is so interesting is that everything happens on the farm. They grow there own alfalfa and corn, make silage, feed their cows, harvest their own milk and within 24 hours the cheese is made. Her family, including her parents and sisters, have help her achieve her dreams!

Fri
24
Mar
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Spring here, but March can bring fickle weather

Spring arrived Monday with nearly all the snow in the area gone and the high temperature reaching 55 degrees – 14 degrees above the March 20 average high of 41 degrees. Sunday was even warmer with the high hitting 64 degrees.

But it is spring in Minnesota. While we can see a high of 73 degrees (March 6) early in the month, we could still see some cold temperatures and snow in the weeks ahead.

Last year the Benson area saw its third warmest March on record with highs reaching into the 70 both March 11 and March 12. The Benson Golf Course even saw one of its earliest openings ever with golfers teeing off March 12.

But one month after those same golfers would have had to go a long ways south of Benson to find temperatures warm enough for golf. The low in Benson fell to a record low of 12 degrees March 12, 2016. While temperatures warmed considerably after that, the area still saw low fall to 27 degrees May 15.

Fri
24
Mar
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Courthouse offices may move into Lewis Drug building

RDA purchasing building with eye toward future economic development

As plans for a $4.1 million renovation of the Swift County Courthouse proceed, courthouse staff is planning to move to a temporary location for at least six months later this year.

That move will include nearly 30 staff, their record files, computers, and other equipment that are currently spread round the three-story courthouse. Eighth Judicial District Court Judge Dave Mennis will be moving to space in the basement of the Swift County Law Enforcement Center.

If plans proceed as scheduled, bids for the renovation project will be let in June with work starting in July and lasting into January.

It is looking like the temporary location for county staff will be the former Lewis Drug building on Atlantic Avenue downtown Benson.

Fri
24
Mar
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New police station moves step closer to reality

Chief Ian Hodge described how the Loen building would be laid out during a tour Monday night.

Marcus to oversee work on Loen building

Converting the Loen Electric building in southwest Benson to become the new Benson Police Department headquarters moved a step closer Monday night with the approval of a construction management agreement with Marcus Construction of Willmar.

Marcus presented an estimated cost for the renovation of the 3,602 square-foot Loen building along with a 1,755-square-foot addition of $381,925. That is slightly less than the $388,000 city estimate. Marcus will also act as the construction manager.

Rather than hirer an architect to develop detailed plans and specifications for the work on the new police department, with the contract going to a single general contractor, the city is hiring Marcus to break the work down into smaller packages, City Manager Rob Wolfington said.

Fri
24
Mar
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Hydrologists solve mystery of Devil’s Kettle waterfall

Hydrologists have solved the mystery of the Devil’s Kettle waterfall, proving that the “missing water” actually re-enters the river from underground.

A waterfall that famously “disappears” into a hole at Judge C.R. Magney State Park near Grand Marais actually soon re-enters the river from underground, according to new research.

In fall 2016, hydrologists from the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources found nearly identical volumes of water flowing both above the Devil’s Kettle waterfall and below it. Above the waterfall, stream gauges measured the flow of the Brule River at 123 cubic feet per second. Below the waterfall, gauges detected 121 feet per second.

“In the world of stream gauging, those two numbers are essentially the same and are within the tolerances of the equipment,” explained DNR springshed mapping hydrologist Jeff Green. “The readings show no loss of water below the kettle, so it confirms the water is resurging in the stream below it.”

Fri
24
Mar
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Gjerde on All-Area first-team

Samantha Gjerde earned All-Area first-team this season, leading the area with a 24.1 points per game average.

Samantha Gjerde, a senior on the KMS girls basketball team, was among five area players selected to the All-Area first-team girls basketball team for 2016-17.

The All-Area team, put out by the West Central Tribune of Willmar, consists of the top players from the 20 or so schools the West Central Tribune covers.

Also selected to the first team were BOLD sophomore Makenna Steffel, Lac qui Parle junior Kelsea Lund, NLS junior Shea Oman, and Willmar senior Heidi Sellmann.

Lund was the only repeat pick on the All-Area first team, while Oman and Sellmann highlighted their seasons by playing in this year’ state tourney.

Just because you’re on the first team one year doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed a spot the next year.  Just ask Montevideo’s Abby Olson, who was on the first team last year, but was left off this season.

Fri
24
Mar
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KMS boys basketball stats

Weston Gjerde led the Saints in assists and steals this season and was also second in scoring and fourth in rebounds.

The KMS boys basketball team went 5-22 this season, including a 2-14 mark within the Camden North Conference.  It was the most wins for the KMS boys basketball program since 2011-2012 when the team went 7-18 overall.

The Saints went 3-4 over their final seven games, including a 57-47 victory over Wabasso in the Section 3A opener before losing to top-seeded Prinsburg in the next round, 57-36.

KMS loses just two seniors from this year’s team (Tanner Rohner and Jorge Zaldivar), but will return four starters and six of its top seven scorers next season.

KMS started out 1-2 this season after beating Lac qui Parle in the third game of the year, 58-53.  The Saints then lost 10-straight before winning against at BLHS, 67-56.

Despite going 0-6 in its next six games, KMS played some of its best basketball, losing four games by less than 10 points.

Fri
24
Mar
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Connelly, Sonnabend, Peterson among leaders for Benson boys in 2016-2017

Max Peterson averaged 12.1 points per game for the Braves, who finished 6-18 overall this season.
Layton Connelly (left) led the Benson boys basketball team in scoring this season and also went over 1,000 career points.

The Benson boys basketball team ended the 2016-17 season with a 6-18 overall record, which included a 1-13 mark within the WCC.

The Braves started out 1-6, but then went 4-6 over its next 10 games, before ending the season with a 1-6 record.

The season came to an end with a 65-53 loss to Montevideo in the first round of the Section 3AA Tourney.  The Braves led early, 26-16, but Montevideo rallied in the second half to pull out the win.

Wins this season for Benson came against Hancock, Paynesville, Minnewaska Area, KMS, YME, and Lac qui Parle.

Seniors lost to graduation from this year’s Benson boys basketball team are Layton Connelly, who became the sixth BHS boy to reach 1,000 career points earlier this season, Zack Sonnabend, Chris Ebnet, Max Peterson, Cole Vergin, Justin Goossen, Nathan Habben, and Ty Hedman.

All eight seniors received the Senior Award during the season-ending banquet, Sunday.

Wed
22
Mar
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Minnesota Voters Spoke; Daudt Not Listening

Minnesota Voters Spoke; Daudt Not Listening

by Reed Anfinson
Publisher, Swift County Monitor-News

Minnesota Republican Speaker of the House Kurt Daudt is rumored to be considering a run for the governorship in 2018. As with all politicians considering a run for higher office, he is carefully calculating his actions in light of how they will play with citizens across the state next year. Such calculation often puts politicians in untenable situations where common sense and political courage take a back seat.

Last fall Minnesota voters overwhelmingly chose to give the authority to raise legislator salaries to the independent citizen Legislative Salary Council. The constitutional amendment granting the authority passed with 76 percent approval –an amazingly high percentage considering all ballots on which a person didn’t check a box were considered no votes.

Thu
16
Mar
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Donald B. Jaeger

Donald B. Jaeger

Donald B. Jaeger was born July 25, 1921 to Ernest and Josephine (Hippe) Jaeger in Cashel Township.

He was baptized and confirmed at Our Redeemer’s Lutheran Church.  He went to country school and then graduated from Benson High School in 1940.  He lettered in football under Leon Brockmeyer for the Benson PlowBoys, now known as the Benson Braves.

He married Gladys Gronseth from Kerkhoven, Minnesota in 1944.

Donnie only wanted to be known as a laborer and farmer.  Farming was in his blood from a young age of farming with his dad.  He worked at J.C. Penny’s when he was 20 years old and broke horses for Ed Shumbaum, who he later cared for so Ed could stay in his home.  He rented the Payne and Troseth farms for 10 years before he and Gladys moved to Benson.

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