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Bernard says enjoy it while it lasts, because it could change quickly
BROWN GROUND — Above, a dried-up pond just north of New Richland illustrates just how dry and unseasonably warm it’s been in the area lately. The pond usually is filled with a couple feet of water, normally frozen in January. Below, a small group of ice fishermen kept close to shore on Beaver Lake Sunday. (Star Eagle photos by Jim Lutgens)
By RACHEL RIETSEMA
Old man winter has been acting a tad peculiar this past December and January. Of course, there’s seemingly little room for complaint, but it would still be satisfying to hear a solid explanation.
So, here to shed some wisdom on our unseasonable brown surroundings is local agronomist, Mark Bernard.
“I seem to remember that the winters of 2006-07 and 01-02 were rather warm as well,” Bernard said. “But, why is there no snow on the ground? Well, there is no one reason. There are many factors to consider when this happens.”
According to Bernard, the matter at which these “open winters” occur is never predictable, due to frequency and magnitude of occurrence.
“The La Niña event in the Pacific, a cooling of the surface sea temperatures, is usually associated with above normal winter precipitation and colder than normal temperatures for us,” Bernard said. “That is why most forecasters were convinced we were in for a wetter and colder than normal winter. The same conditions existed last year, so it seemed like a slam dunk.”
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New Richland City Council
By JODY WYNNEMER
The New Richland City Council chambers were partially full for the first meeting of 2012 Monday night as two Boy Scout leaders and eight Scouts were present to observe the meeting. Mayor Tom McShane called the meeting to order and roll call showed all members present. The Pledge of Allegiance was recited by all and after amendments; the evening’s agenda was approved.
The consent agenda was rather lengthy due to the required annual Mayoral appointments, notably: Official Newspaper - NRHEG Star Eagle; Depository - State Bank of New Richland; Deputy Mayor - Christine Gislason; Fire Chief - Jeremy Parpart; and City Attorney - Perry Berg.
The council next adopted the following resolutions:
• 12-01 — Water and Sewer Rates. The base rate will be $17.47 per month for each meter connection, allocated as $7.12 for water and $10.35 for sewer. Volume rates will be $15.38 per 1,000 gallons of usage, allocated as $9.51 for water and $5.87 for sewer. The new rates will become effective after meter reading January 2012.
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By KATHY PAULSEN
Geneva. It's the village with a heart that sends out arteries of love and concern to the many areas that surround it. In its 28th year at Geneva Bar & Grill, thousands visited this little site for the annual Geneva Cancer Auction, to donate, purchase and contribute to the cause for cancer.
This year’s two-weekend event began Friday, Jan. 6. It will conclude with two more big days this weekend, including an appearance by former Minnesota Viking “Benchwarmer” Bob Lurtsema and two Vikings cheerleaders Friday from 6-7 p.m.
But that’s just a small part of the action, spearheaded by Whitey and LaJune Hagen and several extended family members.
As Whitey is quick to say, there would be no auctions if it weren't for the good people of our area who bring and buy while enjoying a night of camaraderie. Old friends, young friends and new customers are welcomed as one.
The Daybreakers Kiwanis Club of Albert Lea does an outstanding job assisting in the auction, and a long list of volunteers help in many ways. Some great auctioneers continue to give of their time and talents year after year.
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OFFICERS — The inaugural meeting of the Powder Hounds Snowmobile Club was held Sunday, Jan. 8 at Blondie’s in New Richland. Officers are, from left, Jessie Shaffer, Secretary/Treasurer; Brian Hoffman, Vice President; and Joe Ranniger, President. (Star Eagle photo by Jessica Lutgens)
By JESSICA LUTGENS
Eventually, it will snow.
At least that’s what New Richland’s new snowmobile club is hoping.
The Powder Hounds held their inaugural meeting on Sunday, January 8th at Blondie’s Grill, during which they discussed what the group plans to do, and who they’d like to see be a part of the club.
They’re looking for new, younger members who will be able to bring new ideas and be the future of the club. They are hoping it will be something for everyone to be able to take part of and enjoy as a group.
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2011 Year in Review
Part 2 of 4
Compiled by JODY WYNNEMER
• New Richland’s Edna Erdmann knows it’s time to retire at age 87. The owner of the Do-It-Best Hardware store has kept things going for the last 57 years.
• The Winter family is chosen Waseca County Farm Family of The Year. They own and operate the Indian Island Winery southwest of Janesville. Patrick Gregor was selected as Outstanding Young Farmer.
• Brittini Wangsness and Thomas Camerer announce their engagement.
• Steve’s Meat Market of Ellendale wins several awards at the state Meat Processors convention in Rochester, MN.
• Jake Papinski and Jackie Freschette were the top chili cooks at the 3rd Annual New Richland Liquor Company Chili Cook-off. The event raised 30 pounds of food and $260 for the NR Area Food Shelf.
• Both New Richland and Ellendale Food Shelves surpass their March Foodshare Month goals. NR collected 3,998 pounds and $13,399.38. Ellendale collected a combined total of $5,237.20.
• NR Lion Bob Frisk is selected Lion of the Year for Zone 8.
• Ellendale and Geneva firefighters attend Skywarn Spotter training. About 30 members of both departments were in attendance.
• NRHEG Knowledge Bowl teams, under the direction of Mary Sack, have a successful season.
• Three area churches and one New Richland business were burglarized the week of April 12. Thieves stole the PA system at Le Sueur River Lutheran Church.
• Melissa Warner, the new Director of Nursing at the New Richland Care Center, says “Smiling is a big part of my day; making sure that there is a pleasant and happy environment is the key to a smooth operating team.”