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A former Hastings resident, who has served this country for more than 20 years, will be the Hastings Memorial Day speaker Monday, May 31. Col. Jeffrey McDougall of the United States Army has been deployed twice to Bosnia-Herzegovina and twice to Iraq. The Hastings community will honor those men and women who served the country and those who did not return in ceremonies planned at four Hastings locations. The Lyle Russell Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 1210 and Nelson Lucking American Legion Post 47, and their auxiliaries, sponsor the Memorial Day programs. The observances begin at 9 a.m.
Many of the incumbent office holders have already announced they are seeking re-election this year. Now, they can put their pens to the papers - actually Affidavits of Candidacy - starting Tuesday, May 18, and continuing to 5 p.m. Tuesday, June 1. This year's filing period is more than a month earlier than usual due to changes in the state's election law. The changes include moving the state's primary election to Tuesday, Aug. 10. City of Hastings The seat for mayor and two at-large City Council positions will be on the ballot.
The documents are due this week. The three teams selected to submit bid documents for the Highway 61 bridge in Hastings - Flatiron/Kiewit, Lunda/ Ames and PCL/Edward Kraemer and Sons - will submit their paper work to the Minnesota Department of Transportation by May 17. Within several weeks, the contractor for the new bridge across the Mississippi River will be selected. The bridge design will also be selected. MnDOT project manager Steve Kordosky said the requests for proposal for the best value bids are in the hands of the three contractors eligible to submit bids for the project.
Tami Woodley Anderson was planning to attend a benefit planned specifically for her Saturday, May 15. She will not be able to attend. That's OK, though. The former long-time Hastings resident received a special gift Monday afternoon - a new heart at the University of Minnesota Hospital. She had been on the heart transplant waiting list since the fall of 2008. Woodley Anderson lived in Hastings most of her life. She is a 1985 graduate of Hastings High School. Her husband, Kevin, is the son of Hastings residents Gordon and Dolores Anderson.
The Hastings Ministerial Association is a group of Hastings ministers who come together for theological discussion and prayer. Now they are reaching out to the community to join them in prayer on the National Day of Prayer Thursday, May 6. The National Day of Prayer is a day designated by the U.S. Congress when people are asked to turn to God in prayer and meditation. The law formalizing its observance was enacted in 1952.
Monday's fatal crash just north of the Highway 61 bridge raised ongoing questions about the speed and length of the J-type concrete median along that portion of the highway. The crash occurred in the area where there is no concrete median and the speed limit is 40 miles per hour. At the top of the hill, the speed limit is 60 miles per hour.
There's your spelling and geography bees to test students' knowledge and skills. The new kid on the block - the Sixth and Tyler block - is the Religion Bee at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Catholic Church. The creation of Seton Middle School religion teacher Kathy Gleich has been part of the school's program for five years. This year's competition was held last Friday. The winner was eighth- grade student Thomas Everson. The other finalist was sixth-grade student Jordan Grovun. Thomas said he used notecards and flash cards he obtained from Gleich to help prepare for the competition.
The Minnesota Transportation Department and the City of Hastings Public Works Department have construction projects set to go in and around the city. The Dakota County Transportation Department also has set road, bridge and trail projects for this summer. A portion of Dakota County Road 46 (160th Street) will be resurfaced from the Vermillion River bridge (Pleasant Drive ) east to Highway 61 (Vermillion Street). As part of this work, the city will do some repairs to the drainage structures, manholes, and gate valves. The work is estimated to cost about $7,000.
The three victims of the two-vehicle crash in Vermillion Township have been identified -- Lucila Gutierrez Rojas, 42, Hastings; and Norma Sanchez-Navarette, 24, and Eduardo Bautista-Navarrete, 27, both of St. Paul. The driver of the semi-tractor trailer was Trevor Hubbard, 30, of Northfield. According to the Sheriff's office, the Rojas vehicle was traveling southwesterly on County 47. The trailer was following it. As Rojas approached Goodwin Avenue, she apparently slowed her vehicle and made a wide turn. The Rojas vehicle was then struck broadside by the trailer.
The Dakota County Sheriff's Office is investigating a two-vehicle crash Monday afternoon in Vermillion Township. Three people were killed. The crash occurred at about 12:20 p.m. when an SUV with three occupants was traveling southwest on County Road 47 approaching Goodwin Avenue. It was followed by a semi-tractor trailer. According to a witness, the SUV appeared to slow down and make a wide turn, when it was struck broadside by the trailer. The SUV rolled off the roadway and into the ditch. One occupant was ejected from the vehicle.