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NEW LONDON - A chilly northwest wind was blowing Tuesday as Tim and Julie Rittenhouse medicated and fed some of the 2,000 honeybee colonies they maintain at 65 different locations in Kandiyohi, Stearns and Meeker counties. The cold snap kept the bees inside the hives, which made it easier for the Hawick couple to do their work. But with the spread of the varroa mite creeping into hives and killing entire colonies, there was a harsh edge to their fall work with the bees.
ST. PAUL - Listening to a Minnesota Department of Transportation spending request is being compared to farming. "You go out to plow the field and you think you had a really nice, clean field to plow," and instead you hit rock after rock, said House Speaker Margaret Anderson Kelliher, who was raised on a farm. "That's what this has felt like," she said following a legislative hearing Tuesday.
CLARA CITY -- Jason Zimmer was watching the soybean yield monitor in his 9600 John Deere combine Friday afternoon jump from 35 bushes to 65 bushes an acre. On the low grounds the yield was good. On the hills -- not so good. Coming off a two-month drought, west central Minnesota farmers were a little nervous about what they would find in the fields. With harvest moving into full gear this week, farmers are seeing wide variations in yields from field to field, but are pleased with the overall average. "It's a little better than we expected," Zimmer said.
With Monday looming as the deadline for public comment on rules affecting docks on public waters, Sen. Mary Olson fears the general public isn't aware how those rules could shape the quality of Minnesota lakes. Olson, DFL-Bemidji, put out an alarm Friday that the state Department of Natural Resources' comment period on how the state regulates dock construction ends on Monday. And, based on public input at what she said was little-publicized open houses, the DNR may loosen its rules further, allowing larger docks -- which some rule-change opponents call "party platforms" -- on public waters.
The Hubbard County Sheriff's Office has issued an alert of e. coli contamination in the city water in Park Rapids. Fecal coliform or e. coli bacteria were found in the city water supply Friday, according to a news release from the Sheriff's Office. These bacteria can make people sick and are of particular concern for people with weakened immune systems. The Sheriff's Office warns residents not to drink the water without boiling it first. To decontaminate the water, bring it to a boil, let it boil for one minute, and let it cool before using. Residents can also use bottled water.
SLAYTON -- Two more people have been arrested in connection with a Buffalo Ridge Drug Task Force investigation into a marijuana grow operation discovered in Murray County earlier this month. Arrested Wednesday after execution of a search warrant were Robin Hope Easterday, 24, of Fulda, and Jeremy Fredrick Aguirre, 32, of Marshall.
It was smoke 'em if you got 'em for the last time in Minnesota bars Sunday night. And if you didn't have 'em, Horseshoe Billiards in Duluth was giving them away. The Lincoln Park/West End bar celebrated the last hours of legal smoking in bars with a disc jockey party that included songs like "Smokin' in the Boys Room,'' and owner Jerry Fredrickson offering plates of free cigarettes and cigars. They were going by the handful. "No doggie bags, please," a sign read. "We don't like it.
Lutefisk isn't nearly as bad as its reputation, according to bizarre foods aficionado Andrew Zimmern. The host of the Travel Channel program, "Bizarre Foods" had his first taste of the Scandinavian fish dish on Saturday in Cyrus. "It was more tame than I thought it would be," Zimmern said. "I don't know why lutefisk has such a bad reputation. It's very mild tasting. Although, it's texture is very off-putting." Zimmern and a production crew spent several hours in Cyrus on Saturday, filming at the Cozy Cafe.
Providing nearly 13,000 jobs and a $430 million direct economic benefit, American Indian casinos occupy a huge slice of Minnesota's economy. Depending upon which study and what year, tribally run casinos rank ninth to 11th on Minnesota's top employer list, which has the state of Minnesota itself as No. 1 and Target Corp. second. Yet it's one of the least understood industries and one that faces constant competition -- even over the ability to conduct Indian gaming as a sovereign right of the tribes.
LUVERNE, Minn. - Every town has its heroes. But something changes when your hometown heroes thrust the community into the national spotlight. Everybody brings their cameras. Last night this town hosted the world premiere of the highly anticipated Ken Burns film, "The War," a massive Word War II documentary. An early evening downpour cancelled the red carpet walk, a parade and a cover shoot for Newsweek magazine. It didn't dampen the enthusiasm.