Katrina Styx has been a reporter for the Hastings Star Gazette since 2010. She has a bachelor's degree in English with a minor in journalism from the University of Wisconsin - River Falls. Prior to coming to Hastings, Katrina reported for weekly newspapers in Jordan, Minn., and River Falls, Wis.
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May 21, Star Wars fans from all over the Midwest will gather in Hastings to celebrate the 30th anniversary of "The Empire Strike Back." They'll be attending Charity Con, the first Star Wars convention to be held in Hastings. "As far as I know, this is the only Star Wars convention in Minnesota," said Keith Garrick, the event's coordinator. Already Garrick knows of people from Wisconsin, Iowa, and the Dakotas who are planning to attend. Charity Con is more than just a Star Wars convention. "It's a Star Wars themed charity convention with the aim of raising donations for the local food shelf
What do you get when you put nine of the best high school runners in the state on one track for one shot at a year's worth of bragging rights? The Hamline Elite Meet. The name says it all - Hamline University's high school track and field meet only takes the best of the best from across Minnesota. Not every school gets a shot at competing there, but there was one Hastings uniform on the Hamline track last weekend. Hastings High School senior Dan Guelle ran in the 400-meter dash Friday evening. He first heard about the meet last year after seeing other athletes with T-shirts from the event.
As a team, the Hastings boys golfers had too many strokes to contend for the Tri-State Tournament title. The Raiders scored 689 and placed 23rd out of 24 teams at the two-day tournament last weekend.
The girls golf team began its conference play last week with a tournament April 22 at Prestwick Golf Club in Woodbury. The Raiders ended with a score of 206 and took eighth place out of 10 teams. The best score of the day came from Lexi Harp, who shot a 49. Hannah Hoffman scored 50, Jordy Klimek scored 53, captain Ellen Bergschneider scored 54, Sadie Karbo scored 56 and Maddy Bauer also scored 56. The girls improved by six strokes April 26 at Forest Lake Golf Club.
The boys track and field team scored 41 points at the Packer Invitational in Austin last Saturday, leaving them in last place. Hastings' boys team competed against Austin, Mankato East, Rochester Mayo, Esko and Rochester Century high schools. Mankato East dominated the meet with 144 points. The Raiders' only first-place finish came from senior Michael Rough. Rough ran the 3200 in 9:50.48. The only other boys to finish in the top three in an event were seniors Dan Guelle and Blake Reynolds. Guelle placed second in the triple jump and third in the 200.
Hastings' girls track and field team scored 41 points against Rochester Century, Mankato East, Visitation, Austin, Esko and Owatonna high schools Saturday at the Packer Invitational meet in Austin. The Raiders placed sixth out of the seven teams. Rochester Century took first place with 135.5 points. The top finishers for the Raiders were seniors Alicia Alverson and Kelly Pechous. Alverson earned two third-place finishes, one in the 400 dash and another in long jump. Pechous placed third in the 1600 and second in the 3200.
The Raider baseball team lost its seventh game in a row Monday to Woodbury. The Raiders are 1-7 for the season. Their only win was their season opener against Farmington. Vs. Roseville The Raiders faced Roseville April 21 at Hastings High School. Roseville kept a steady flow of runs throughout the game while Hastings were only able to score in the second inning. Roseville led the game off with three runs in the top of the first thanks to a string of singles with Aaron Stoneberg on the mound.
The newest owner of the coffee shop at 202 E. Second St. is marketing to people of all ages, and so far it's working. "We're trying to cater to all ages and really take care of our customers," Shirley Brantner said. Brantner bought the business in November. She had owned a bakery before, but had to close it down because of her health at the time.
It's time to put on your running shoes and hit the streets once again for the ninth annual Nick Clare Memorial Run this Saturday. The past few years Hastings High School has organized the event. This year, it's back in the hands of Clare's family. The run is a fundraiser for high school scholarships, but it's also how Clare's family remembers him and celebrates his life. "We wanted to memorialize him in a way that expressed his lifestyle," Clare's sister, Jenny Wilcox, said. Clare was an avid runner and participated in cross country, skiing and track at the high school.
Terry Tousignant of Hastings chose a quiet Saturday morning to visit Long Lake for a test flight of his newest homemade creation. It looks like a boat, it's registered as a boat, but unlike a boat, it doesn't need open water. In fact, it doesn't need water at all. The Black Knight, as Tousignant calls it, is a hovercraft. Tousignant first got the idea to build a hovercraft from watching an episode of Junkyard Wars in which a team built one from junkyard parts.