Chad Richardson is the news director for RiverTown Multimedia. He was the publisher of four RiverTown publications until 2016, when he was named news director. He was previously general manager of the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages from 2000 to 2007. He worked at the Hastings Star Gazette from 1996 to 2000 as a photographer and reporter. He also worked as a photographer and writer at the Pope County Tribune in Glenwood.
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The Hastings swimming team scored a big Suburban East Conference win last week, beating the Cretin-Derham Hall Raiders in a meet that came down to the final event, 91-79. With just one event remaining for the night, Hastings held a slim 81-75 lead over Cretin. That final event, the 400 freestyle relay, ended up being a good one for the Raiders. Hastings teams placed first and third, earning the team 10 points, all the margin the Raiders would need to get the win. The swimmer of the meet for Hastings was Brina Kari, who won the 50 freestyle and took second in the 100 backstroke.
At first glance, it looks like the Hastings girls soccer team is off to one very rough start. While it is true that the Raiders have an 0-5 record, three of those losses were by one goal, and all three could have gone the other way. Case in point? Thursday against Mounds View, a strong Suburban East Conference school that improved to 4-1-1 with the win over Hastings. They were able to sneak out of Hastings with a 2-1 win. "That game, it was unbelievable," coach Joanne Teigland said. "Honestly, they played so hard and they were so focused.
In the first week of the season, the Hastings boys football team played White Bear Lake even in the first quarter, heading into the second at 0-0. In week No. 2, Hastings trailed East Ridge just 7-0 after one quarter. By halftime, though, each game looked much, much different. Against the Bears, Hastings allowed 21 second-quarter points and trailed 21-0 at the half. Against the Raptors, Hastings allowed 21 second-quarter points and trailed 28-0 at the half.
The story of the Hastings cross country season continues to come in small packages. Sophomore Bri Strandberg placed fourth overall to lead the Hastings contingent at its lone home meet of the year, the Dewey Minnaert Invitational at Spring Lake Park on Thursday. Strandberg had a time of 16:20.70 to lead the team. "She was a little nervous," Hastings coach John Dewall said. "She had some pre-race jitters. She shook them off and went out there and had fun. She had a phenomenal race.
While Abra Hovgaard slept comfortably in her home early Tuesday morning, her friends received a frightening e-mail from her. She had been robbed at gunpoint, had her cash and credit cards stolen and was desperately seeking money so she could fly home. It was all a hoax. Someone had taken control of her e-mail account and sent out the e-mail, hoping to find someone in the United States gullible enough to wire $2,450 to England, immediately. "As far as I know, nobody sent money," Hovgaard said.
A groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate the construction of a new Highway 61 bridge in Hastings over the Mississippi River is planned to begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 22, at Levee Park in Hastings. An informational open house is planned to begin at Hastings City Hall at noon on Sept. 22.
By 10:30 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 5, Nicole and Marshall Halbach were fast asleep. It had been a great weekend up to that point, and with Labor Day, they were excited to spend another day off with their two boys and the friends who were sound asleep in their basement. Then a speeding car flew into their lawn, smashed into their Cadillac and came to a stop. The car was driven by an 18-year-old Hastings man, Joseph Andrew Walsh, who was booked on probable cause charges of driving under the influence, hit and run and hit and run with property damage.
Thanks to security camera video, Hastings police have already made an arrest in a string of thefts that occurred here early Sept. 11. A 19-year-old Hastings man, Jordan William Salmela, was arrested and booked on charges of felony theft and a gross misdemeanor of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. A 14-year-old Hastings boy has been referred to juvenile court. Ken Warner, who operates X-treme Wire in Hastings, a home security and home theater company, has cameras mounted outside his garage.
A garage and truck fire spewed black smoke high into the sky over Hastings at approximately 2 p.m. Monday. The fire destroyed the garage and a Ford truck. The fire occurred at 745 W. Fourth St. Firefighters from the Hastings Fire Department were on scene and battling the blaze. Fourth Street and area roads were closed as crews fought the fire. More information will be posted here when it becomes available.
Early Saturday morning, at least one individual went on a crime spree in Hastings between the swimming pool and the fire station. The person entered six vehicles and made away with at least one laptop. What the thief didn't know, though, was that he was being recorded as he stole that laptop. Ken Warner, who operates X-treme Wire, a home security and home theater business in Hastings, had his video camera rolling outside his home as the thief entered his car at 2:24 a.m. on Sept. 11. Warner released the video Monday with the hope that other residents here could help identify the thief.