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The Nisswa Planning Commission met for more than three hours Wednesday, June 24, to discuss potential changes to the city's outdoor sign ordinance. The goal is to streamline the process for businesses to obtain permission to erect signs while preserving Nisswa's unique, small-town character.
A mosaic will become part of the LInda Ulland Memorial Gardens being built at the Army Corps of Engineers Crosslake Recreation Area, and the public is invited to help put it together. "I'm hoping the campers in the campground can help," said Taren Saccoman of Ideal Township, who put together the plan for the garden. That plan incorporates a new craft she's perfecting - mosaic. A mosaic will surround the doorway entrance to the learning center in the Corps of Engineers building.
The Lake Shore City Council on Monday, June 22, clarified its position regarding outside music and decibel limits at Zorbaz on Gull. Action taken in February made it sound like the council would shut down the music if any complaints were received. The council clarified that it would allow outside music at Zorbaz to exceed the decibel limits until 11 p.m. on dates listed on Zorbaz entertainment schedule with the condition that if the city received any complaints it would revisit the 11 p.m.
Around a dozen city employees will benefit from the minimum wage increase that goes into effect Aug. 1. The Nisswa City Council on Wednesday, June 17, agreed to give some employees at Spirits of Nisswa municipal liquor and the Pickle Factory raises to $9 per hour effective July 1 or Aug. 1. The state's minimum wage will rise to that rate Aug.
Three members of the Pequot Lakes City Council on Tuesday, June 16, agreed to accept a tentative road turnback agreement with Crow Wing County where the city would receive a total of $5,380,000 to take over ownership of three key road segments when Highway 371 expands to four lanes next year. Council members Scott Pederson and Greg Karr were absent during the vote. Karr arrived late to the meeting. Mayor Dave Sjoblad and council members Jerry Akerson and Randy Loukota voted for the agreement.
Echo Publishing is hosting a customer appreciation open house next week at our Pequot Lakes office. Yes, you read that right — at our Pequot Lakes office. "You're still open?" "Didn't you close and move to Brainerd?" "Doesn't the Brainerd Dispatch own you?" Yes, no and no! Echo Publishing — which includes the weekly Pineandlakes Echo Journal newspaper, the weekly Echoland Piper Shopper and the pineandlakes.com website — has undergone many, many changes in the past several years. But our Pequot Lakes office has remained open through it all.
Graduation season is once again upon us. In the lakes area, students, parents, grandparents, other family members and friends have already attended preschool graduations, fourth-grade graduations, eighth-grade graduations and more. Makayla Conrad-Kassa became the first-ever graduate of Crosslake Community School on Monday, May 18, after the school offered online classes for grades 9-12 starting last fall. Makayla made history as a class of one — I think that's so cool! In Pequot Lakes, 123 seniors will graduate in a ceremony that will start at 7 p.m.
Speaking before Gov. Mark Dayton's weekend vetos of more bills, several area state legislators shared their views of the recently concluded legislative session. A disappointment was the governor's veto of the K-12 education bill. On the positive side, legislators cited increased funding for nursing homes. "Probably the most important thing we got accomplished is rural nursing homes and deep rural nursing homes will be reimbursed at the same rate as metro nursing homes, which will be significant," said District 9 state Sen. Paul Gazelka, R-Cass County. District 10A state Rep.
The Lake Shore City Council on Monday, May 18, agreed to have city engineer Widseth Smith Nolting (WSN) conduct a lift station inventory for $3,430 and a lift station pump calibration evaluation for no more than $1,900 as the city continues to assess and repair its wastewater system, according to draft meeting minutes. WSN will provide an inventory of lifts 1-7 and will prioritize the lift station upgrade/repair.
Lynn Hunt said she and her husband, Paul, have embraced Pine River as their home since moving there in 2004-05, and their goal is to continue to raise the sustainability and resiliency of the area. "You can't be self-sustainable without the community," she said. "We encourage people to come to Pine River to see it, to taste it, to feel it," she told Pine River Chamber of Commerce members after receiving the chamber's Distinguished Service Award on Monday night, May 11, at the 37th annual award banquet at the Pine River American Legion. Steve Hansen, the 2014 Distinguished Service Award winn