It all started with a spreadsheet. Crime mapping began in Crow Wing County in 2009 with an Excel list of all the incidents the sheriff's office responded to in the previous three months, according to county officials. "It was something we wanted to have for the last few years," said Scott Goddard, captain of the sheriff's office. "The crime map is fairly new. We don't have any hard data yet, but it certainly does appear that we've seen an uptick in calls from the public in reference to suspicious activity, which is exactly what we wanted."
It's scary how quickly summer has ended—and even scarier we only have a few months left to shop for Christmas gifts for sometimes-oh-so-hard-to-please friends and family. Have no fear, as I am here to recommend horror movies that would take anyone's mind off of the stress of holiday gatherings associated with, for example, Thanksgiving or New Year's Eve. Most of us are familiar with Jason Voorhees from the "Friday the 13th" film series and Freddy Krueger from the "A Nightmare on Elm Street" movie franchise, so they're too obvious.
A new drug-testing program funded by Crow Wing County works—but exactly how successful it is as a deterrent for those seeking food or cash, and getting people off of drugs, is debatable. Community services started a policy in November through the state of Minnesota to drug test people who have a drug-felony conviction within the past 10 years who want financial assistance or help buying groceries from the government.
Souped up, stripped down or tricked out—the miniature cars had one thing in common: their owners in the adult pinewood derby at Roundhouse Brewery were in Brainerd to win. Competitors designed and built—from a kit—unpowered, unmanned cars raced as part of the Thursday, Oct. 11, fundraiser to support local Scouting programs in the Brainerd lakes area.
A Crow Wing County road improvement project with a long and contentious history is going forward full-speed ahead, but it hasn't been easy. The Crow Wing County Board of Commissioners unanimously voted at its Tuesday, Oct. 9, meeting to make County Road 115—also known as Ojibwa and Nashway roads—a "priority." "I think this has been a very fruitful time since this last go around where we have really engaged the community," Commissioner Paul Thiede said before the vote.
Crow Wing County Commissioner Paul Thiede started the Tuesday, Oct. 9, county board meeting by taking aim at Bill Brekken, Thiede's opponent in the Nov. 6 general election. Thiede briefly relinquished his position as chairman to speak as the other candidate for District 2 during the open forum portion of the meeting and left listeners speechless. "Madame Chairman, I'm taking this unusual step this morning because I believe this board has been unjustly attacked," Thiede emphatically told Vice Chairwoman Rosemary Franzen while addressing the board.
The Crow Wing County Budget Committee drilled down to review the numbers behind the 2019 preliminary budget and levy the county board approved unanimously at its last board meeting. At the heart of the Friday, Oct. 5, budget committee meeting was commissioners' desire to reduce the 2019 preliminary levy of 6.99 percent. In December, the board passed a reduced levy for 2018 for the eighth consecutive year. "The levy has been flat for the last eight years. This county's budget for the last eight years has gone up every, single, year," Commissioner Paul Koering said.
For Crow Wing County residents with questions as to whom to vote for in November's general election, this was the place to be. The Crow Wing County Land Services Building in Brainerd was the site of a candidate forum Tuesday, Oct. 2, for county commissioner candidates hoping to represent District 2 or District 3. "We're here to get more information about the candidates," said Jon Swanson, a 51-year-old from Brainerd in attendance with his wife.
It should come as no surprise to anyone who knows Haley Helmin that she was named "2018 Youth Volunteer of the Year"—except maybe for Helmin herself. The Brainerd High School senior is "Miss Teen Baxter United States 2019." She learned she had been chosen for the yearly award at a pageant practice at the school Sunday, Sept. 30.
Walking in the woods at Northland Arboretum has never been like this. The "Art Walk at the Arb" is the first collaboration between The Crossing Arts Alliance and Northland Arboretum in Brainerd. The fundraiser will take place from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 29, and feature nature-inspired art stations, artworks and artists creating art, and more.