Motorists should beware of Halloween pedestrians
Increased pedestrian traffic throughout Halloween afternoon and night hours means drivers must be particularly mindful to scan streets and intersections for trick-or-treaters and their parents.
Shorter days mean morning and evening rush hours are darker. This makes it much more difficult for drivers to see pedestrians and requires pedestrians to ensure drivers see them before crossing.
October was the deadliest month for pedestrians from 2007-2011, followed by December and November.
Preliminary data from that Minnesota Department of Public Safety show that 27 pedestrians to date have been killed on Minnesota roads in 2012, compared to 22 at this time in 2011. This includes two pedestrian fatalities so far in October 2012, compared to six in October 2011, seven in October 2010 and five in October 2009.
■ Halloween safety tips for drivers:
• Slow down in residential neighborhoods and school zones.
• Scan the road and sides of the road ahead for pedestrians.
• Look carefully behind your vehicle, especially for small children, before backing up.
• Avoid distractions—put away the cell phones.
■ Halloween safety tips for parents and children:
• Make eye contact with drivers and ensure they see you and will stop before stepping into the road.
• Cross the street in well-lit areas.
• Wear bright-colored clothing and reflective material or carry a flashlight.
• Cross streets at corners, not mid-block.
• Walk on sidewalks or pathways. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible.
55+ driver improvement program offered
The Minnesota Highway Safety Center will offer a 55+ driver improvement course on the following days: from 5:30-9:30 p.m. Thursday (4 hour refresher), Crosby-Ironton Senior High/Com. Ed., 711 Poplar St., Crosby; from 4-8 p.m. Nov. 7 (4 hour refresher), Mills Ford, 14858 Dellwood Dr., Baxter; from 5-8 p.m. Nov. 12 (4 hour refresher), Pequot Lakes School/Community Ed, 30805 Olson St., Pequot Lakes; from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 14 (4 hour refresher), United Methodist Church, P.O. Box 293, Emily; from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Nov. 27 (4hr. refresher), Lord of Life Lutheran Church, 6190 Fairview Road W., Baxter; from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Nov. 28 (4 hour refresher), Sacred Heart Catholic Church, 300 1st St. N., Hackensack; from 1:30-5:30 p.m. Nov. 28 (4 hour refresher), Walker Area Community Center, 105 Tower Ave., Walker; and from noon to 4 p.m. Nov. 30 (4 hour refresher), Lutheran Church of the Cross, 5064 County Road 13, Nisswa.
The Driver Improvement course is open to the public; pre-registration is requested. A Minnesota Highway Safety and Research Center certified instructor teaches this class. By using the most up-to-date research in the field, participants will be provided the latest information in regards to driver safety, new laws, and vehicle technology. This class has something for everyone. The fee for the four hour refresher course is $20 and the eight hour course is $24. For more information or to register, visit our website at www.mnsafetycenter.org or call 888-234-1294.
Persons age 55 and older who complete the course qualify for a 10 percent discount on their auto insurance premiums for three years, according to Minnesota law. First time participants must complete the initial eight hours of training and a four hour refresher class every three years to maintain the 10 percent discount.
Brainerd Eagles celebrate 110 years
Brainerd Fraternal Order of Eagles No. 287 is inviting the community to join it in celebrating 110 years of community service during an open house anniversary party from 1 p.m. to midnight, Nov. 17, at the Brainerd Aerie, 124 Front St.
The event is open to the public and begins at 1 p.m. with an aerie meeting, followed by bar bingo at 2 p.m., a hog roast at 6 p.m. and live music from The Agates from 8 p.m. until midnight. Minnesota State Aerie President Bob Lee is expected to attend.
The Brainerd Eagles has maintained a presence in the community since 1902 and currently hosts nearly 700 aerie and auxiliary members. The group donates about $25,000 annually to organizations such as Brainerd Parks and Recreation, Confidence Learning Center, Brainerd Community Action and more.
For more information contact Brent Walker at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the Brainerd Eagles at 829-4216.
Chapter DV, P.E.O. to meet
Chapter DV, P.E.O. will meet 10 a.m. Saturday at the home of Sharon Halliwill with co-hostess Bev Siemens assisting. Sue Beilfuss will give the Star Award Report. Diane Eitrheim will present a program on her recent travels.
Teachers’ Tea is Nov. 14 at American Legion
The Brainerd American Legion Auxiliary will host its annual “Teachers’ Tea” from 3 to 6 p.m. Nov. 14. This event is free to all area educators.
The mayors of Baxter and Brainerd are expected to attend the event, legion officials said.