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There is a time for everything under the sun – including change – and I am embracing it. After 7-1/2 years as Pine River Journal editor, I’m leaving the newspaper business and embarking on a new career. As I reflect back on my time at the Journal, I’m humbled by all the opportunities I have had to get to know the community. I’ve learned about so many things, met so many different people, and experienced more than I ever expected. I’ve covered joyful stories, heartbreaking stories and everything in between.
Brenda Anderson, a Pine River native, travelled more than 8,000 miles to Chennai, in southeast India, for a medical procedure May 29. It was her first time out of the country and her first time having surgery, but the experience was an extremely positive one. Brenda, accompanied by her husband, Craig, had hip resurfacing on her left hip after researching the procedure and looking at doctors who perform it in the U.S. and abroad.
Pine River Area Sanitary District (PRASD) employees will be handling year round maintenance in Backus thanks to an agreement between PRASD and the City of Backus. Duties include snow plowing, mowing and maintenance on city hall and the townhomes, among other duties. The city already contracts with PRASD for water and sewer services. The total cost for maintenance and for the water and sewer contract for two years is $3,200 per month, according to City Clerk Jeff Turk. Water meter project
The Pine River City Council – along with the public – is invited to attend a Barclay Avenue Beautification meeting at 6 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 30, at the HUG campus, west of town on CR2. The GreenStep Task Force, (made up of community volunteers) along with the nonprofit Envision MN, will host the public meeting to discuss ideas to beautify downtown and draw in more visitors. The GreenStep Task force is part of the Greater Pine River Area Healthy Communities Partnership that formed in 2009 with a grant from the Initiative Foundation.
The call to ministry was strong for Pastor John Rister. Strong enough for him to end his 20-year career in the auto industry and move his Monroe, Michigan-based family more than 1,200 miles to pursue a degree in pastoral ministries. Rister, of Backus Nazarene Church, went from working as a millwright for Ford Motor Company to attending Nazarene Bible College in Colorado Springs. Rister said the call to ministry felt scary. He was two-thirds of the way to retirement and felt that God was leading him in a different direction.
Author Alison McGhee will share her love of language and writing with area residents during a free noon presentation at Pine River-Backus School, Thursday, Nov. 15. Lunch is available for $6. McGhee, a Pulitzer Prize nominee and New York Times bestselling author, was chosen as the featured author for this year’s PR-B Community Read. McGhee’s books – “Mrs. Watson Wants Your Teeth,” (elementary); “Julia Gillian and the Quest for Joy,” (intermediate); and “Shadow Baby,” (high school) – were chosen for this year’s event.
The Pine River City Council set its preliminary 2013 levy at the same amount as the prior two levies: $373,871. The levy breakdown by fund is: General, $307,573; Library, $28,048; Fire, $28,000; Fire Association Relief $2,000; Sewer, $8,250. The Truth in Taxation hearing will be held at 6:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 11, at city hall. Councilors Patty Melby, Tony Desanto and Tamara Hansen were present at the Sept. 11 meeting. Mayor Jim Sabas and Councilor Ronnie Derksen were absent.