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By: Mike O'Rourke on August 26, 2011 - 11:11am - Add new comment

Do you know anyone with a Brainerd area connection with an interesting story related to Hurricane Irene? If so, contact Associate Editor Mike O’Rourke on Friday at 218 855-5860 or mike.orourke@brainerddispatch.com or Editor Roy Miller at 218 855-5855 or roy.miller@brainerddispatch.com.

By: Mike O'Rourke on February 8, 2012 - 10:44am - Add new comment

Minnesota Republicans on Tuesday showed they weren’t ready to hand the nomination over to the former Massachusetts governor.
As of the morning of Feb. 8, we’re still awaiting Crow Wing County’s vote totals, but it would be surprising if the county didn’t strongly support Rick Santorum.
Sitting in with the Crow Wing Township precinct Tuesday night, the tally there (reported in the Feb. 8, paper and website) was:
Rick Santorum-12.
Mitt Romney-4.
Ron Paul-3.
Newt Gingrich-2.
Statwide results showed that the Crow Wing Republicans weren’t the only ones who liked Santorum.

By: Mike O'Rourke on September 14, 2011 - 8:37am - Add new comment

Fifty years is a long time so it’s no wonder that when I recount the story of attending the first Minnesota Vikings regular season game, younger colleagues look at me as if I had traveled to Met Stadium by covered wagon.

It was Sept. 17, 1961. The upstart Vikings shocked the NFL by defeating George Halas’ Chicago Bears 37-13, thanks to the heroics of a then-second string, rookie quarterback, Fran Tarkenton.

By: Mike O'Rourke on October 26, 2012 - 9:34am - Add new comment

Republican House District 10B candidate Dale Lueck of rural Aitkin wasn’t able to return a reporter’s phone call until 6:45 p.m. Thursday. His livestock had to be fed.
When the cattle rancher and former Aitkin County commissioner got up to speed on news of the House Republican Campaign Committee (HRCC) staffer who had misrepresented himself as a Hill City DFLer in a letter published in both the Aitkin Independent Age and the Brainerd Dispatch he seemed disappointed and a little irritated.

By: Mike O'Rourke on June 8, 2011 - 9:53am - Add new comment


Rick Nolan’s possible campaign for the 8th Congressional District seat was featured this week in a column written by Stuart Rothenberg that appeared in the Rothenberg Political Report and in Roll Call.

The most interesting tidbit was Rothenberg’s observation on how the cost of political campaigns has skyrocketed since Nolan, of rural Crosslake, last ran for Congress in 1978.

By: Mike O'Rourke on November 9, 2011 - 11:21am - Add new comment

Two disturbing signs marred an otherwise beautiful morning run this week along the Mississippi River near Boom Lake.
Let’s dwell on the positive first.

By: Mike O'Rourke on April 19, 2011 - 7:43am - Add new comment


This just in! 

The Associated Press reported Monday that for the first time in the 95-year history of the Pulitzers no winner was named for breaking news.  

Any further details on this development will be available on www.brainerddispatch.com or in the Brainerd Dispatch print edition.


By: Mike O'Rourke on December 18, 2010 - 5:13pm - Add new comment

Before Facebook was invented my mom exchanged Christmas cards with far-flung friends for decades. If one year she didn't receive a card from the family it meant that their status had been changed to: Wife died.

By: Mike O'Rourke on January 25, 2011 - 3:32pm - Add new comment

Rotary meetings are a fun blend of hometown boosterism, good-natured razzing inspiring civic involvement.

Thanks to an invitation from Brainerd Rotary Club member Deborah Erickson I was reminded of how much energy and good will is displayed at those weekly meetings. 

By: Mike O'Rourke on December 19, 2011 - 2:53pm - Add new comment

Associate Editor
Last week was a busy week in Republican circles and as developments prompted the rewriting of last weekend's Eggs and Issues stories, I neglected to include one interesting bit of information from that Brainerd Lakes Chamber session.
Sen. Paul Gazelka, R-Brainerd, said Friday morning he had decided to run for at least one more term in the Minnesota Senate. That's probably no surprise, but it's the first time I had heard him state his intentions.