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Pequot Lakes: Fire dept. will mark 100 years with street dance - Wyld Ryce Band to reunite for event

This familiar logo should bring back memories for many middle-aged Lakes Area full-time and part-time residents, the Wyld Ryce band logo was seen in many local papers and shoppers.1 / 2
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The Pequot Lakes City Council on Thursday, July 6, agreed to support a Pequot Lakes Fire Department street dance Saturday, Aug. 5, on Government Drive between East Woodman and Main streets as part of the department's 100-year celebration.

The road will be closed to traffic, and the fire department will use the park area outside the chamber building.

The Wylde Ryce Band will reunite after more than 20 years of retirement to perform from 8 p.m. to midnight. The Muddy Waters Band will perform from 6-8 p.m.

Capital improvement plan

The council talked about 2018 capital improvement projects and their estimated costs in an effort to prioritize projects.

Estimates for potential projects total $6,781,616. Projects in order of priority include the new maintenance facility and salt shed, estimated $1,455,184; Trailside Park master plan, estimated $1,737,832; improving north part of Government Drive, estimated $705,600; downtown southeast street quadrant improvements, estimated $2,383,000; and County Road 112 improvements, $500,000.

Council members questioned certain items and estimated costs. It was stressed that costs are estimates and some were estimated high.

The council agreed this is a working document.

Public safety

The council acknowledged that effective Jan. 1, 2018, the Pequot Lakes Police Department will no longer have a contract to provide police services to Jenkins Township as the township wants to opt out of that contract.

At Police Chief Eric Klang's suggestion, the council agreed to move the pedestrian crosswalk sign from the Paul Bunyan Trail and County State Aid Highway 11 crossing to the intersection of Government Drive and CSAH 11.

In May, police had a record 396 calls for service, including: 911 hang up, alarm, damage to property, disturbance, driving complaint, domestic, drug information, medicals, fight, intoxicated person, motorist assist, property damage accident, shooting complaint, suicidal person, suspicious activity, theft and welfare check.

Klang highlighted two incidents - one involving officer Ryan Franz and a vehicle pursuit, and another involving officer Steve Emerson and another pursuit.

Klang also reported that Franz received a plaque for being the top student at a drug recognition school.

Firefighters responded to eight fire calls in May: mutual aid structure fire in Pine River, fire alarm going off in Pequot Lakes, fire alarms canceled enroute to both Jenkins Township and the city of Jenkins, carbon monoxide alarm going off in Pequot Lakes, fire alarm going off in Jenkins Township, agency assist for Cass County sheriff in Moose Lake Township, and set up landing zone for North Ambulance in Loon Lake Township.

In other business July 6, the council:

• Heard from Maury Graham during open forum, who asked the council to again look into paving North Sluetter Road. Graham asked the council to consider including the project in the 2018 budget and asked how many signatures he would need from landowners on that road to initiate the project.

• Agreed to rezone a 39.77-acre parcel on County Road 107 owned by Dennis Reschke from shoreline residential to rural residential so Reschke can harvest the timber to improve the forest's health.

• Agreed to support the Pequot Lakes Police Department's second annual National Night Out from 5-8 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 1, in Trailside Park. The council will meet at 6 p.m. that night, its normal meeting night.

• Accepted a quote from Anderson Brothers for $6,279.33 to pave the parking lot at the city's dog park. Pederson objected, not because he was against the project but because the money will come from a Trailside Park fund.

• Appoint Pat Dittes to the Housing & Redevelopment Authority.

• Agreed to return $123,661 in endowments to the Friends of the Pequot Lakes Community Library to fix a clerical error. Adams abstained because of her involvement with the library.

• Agreed to meet at 6 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 15 (instead of Aug. 22), for a preliminary budget discussion.