Walking into Common Goods in Crosslake, you might find one or two employees manning the store at a time. What you might not see, however, is all the work volunteers do behind the scenes on a daily basis. Common Goods is a thrift store that gives all proceeds to Bridges of Hope, a nonprofit for struggling families in the lakes area. To keep operating costs low, retail manager Andrea Martin relies on all kinds of volunteers in and out of the store. "They're priceless," said Martin. "Volunteers allow us to exist and sustain. We would probably lose money without our volunteers."
Shane Gordon may not have a direct personal connection to Crosslake Community School, but that isn't stopping him from making a difference in the lives of its students and staff. Gordon is the newest community member of the Crosslake Community School Board after his request to join was accepted at the beginning of the board's April meeting. He was able to participate in board activity that same day. "I've always wanted to contribute in some way to children," said Gordon. "If you can help children, then that makes better adults."
Isaac Gerber didn't always feel like a natural leader, but over his years at Pequot Lakes High School, he found comfort and ease in that role. This did not go unnoticed by his community, and Gerber was selected as a Sourcewell Student of Character for Region 5. "You know, it actually felt good, because I always thought that I was trying to lead people in a good direction and it feels good that some people actually saw that," he said.
Babinski Properties removed an application to build a multi-family housing unit from the Crosslake Planning and Zoning Commission meeting agenda for a second time Thursday, April 25, following public criticism and comment about the project. John Babinski, head of Babinski Properties, sent an email to the Planning and Zoning Commission requesting that the application process be extended until the end of June to allow additional changes to the plans for a 60-unit, three-story apartment building on County Highway 3 behind Andy's Bar and Grill.
Moving to the Brainerd lakes area and working as a staff writer for a weekly newspaper was quite a surprise to me after graduating from college, but I embraced the adventure and made my home here for as long as the universe would have me. Apparently, this chapter of my life was meant to close sooner than we all expected. I have accepted a position as the staff photographer of the Argus Leader, a USA Today-affiliated daily newspaper in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and am writing this farewell column during my last week at the Echo Journal before making the move.
Mariah Rickard will reign as Miss Pequot Lakes 2019 after winning the crown Friday evening, April 12, at the annual scholarship pageant in the Pequot Lakes High School auditorium. Whitney Fink and Taylor Schulz both won a place as Miss Pequot Lakes Princess, and Schulz also was chosen Miss Congeniality. Other candidates were Alexa Fyle, Mackenzie Nelson and Shayna Schmidt.
The Breezy Point Police Department spent two days in March training with the Laser Shot firearm simulation program to help officers prepare for instances of escalating conflict. "A lot of people think that nothing happens in small towns, but that's not true," Police Chief Kevin Merschman said. "But 99.99 percent (of encounters) result in no issues so you don't hear about them."
Cuyuna Regional Medical Center is poised to open its clinic Monday, April 1, in Breezy Point. Amy Hart, chief operating officer, said a majority of the equipment was moved in last week and the clinic's opening is on schedule. "We see a lot of our patients come from the north Crow Wing County area," she said. "We have the opportunity to serve the community closer to home. We're having people from the public tell us there's a lot of excitement."
(Parts of this story and photos originally published Thurs. Jan. 17, 2019.) Crow Wing County Sheriff Scott Goddard gave his approval to go ahead with the 29th annual Brainerd Jaycees Ice Fishing Extravaganza on Saturday, Jan. 26, on Gull Lake’s Hole-in-the-Day Bay, south of downtown Nisswa, after an annual ice check last week.
Crosslake Community School received its annual audit from Justin, Clasen and Company, Ltd. during the school board meeting Monday, Dec. 10, at CCS. Susan Schiessl, partner at Justin, Clasen and Company Ltd, discussed the main points and answered questions. Schiessl highlighted the school's overall revenues at $2,906,754 while expenses sit at $3,424,451. The school's net position decreased by $518,393, or 82.9 percent, from June 30, 2017.