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GRAND RAPIDS, Minn. — Rick Bain, Matt Roy and Ryan Webb were only a week into canoeing the entire Mississippi River and they already had hours of stories about wildlife and whitecaps to tell when they stopped in Grand Rapids on Tuesday, July 24. Lake Winnibigoshish was choppy with 4-foot rollers going in every direction a few days before, but instead of skirting along the lakeshore to avoid the waves, the three combat veterans decided to chance it going straight across.
DULUTH—Malachy Koons reapplied sunscreen three times by mid-afternoon while working rows of potatoes on the farm. Keeping up his energy during a full day of work and getting all the dirt washed off can be challenging, too, but none of it compares to the satisfaction the University of Minnesota Duluth senior feels about his work.
DRUMMOND, Wis.—Drummond in far northwest Wisconsin remained an isolated island among the floodwaters on Tuesday, June 19.. Flooded roads still blocked the routes in or out of town and dozens of residents were still stuck in their homes. And it's going to take more than one river or lake receding for life to return to normal in the flooded town of about 450 residents in Bayfield County.
CARLTON, Minn.—If visitors to Jay Cooke State Park want to use an indoor restroom, they're out of luck. The only choices now are a port-a-potty or an outhouse. The park's water line was damaged in October, leaving it without running water. But it's not the only repair needed at the park — the shower-and-restroom building is too small for the 83-site campground, the Oldenburg Point picnic shelter's deteriorating roof has shingles falling off and the Oldenburg Point restroom building still hasn't been restored since the 2012 flood.
DULUTH—More than two dozen people are facing state and federal charges stemming from their alleged involvement in what authorities say was "a large heroin trafficking network" that brought drugs into northern Minnesota.
MARICAO, Puerto Rico—Faced with going into a 1,000-foot-deep ravine to fix a power line near Maricao, Puerto Rico, Minnesota Power linemen turned to two local men for help. The men had been running their well pumps off generators to get water since hurricanes Irma and Maria cut off their power last fall, explained Dean Erdman, the line crew supervisor with Minnesota Power and part of a contingent of employees from the Duluth-based utility who have spent the past month on the island.
The novels "To Kill a Mockingbird" and "The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" will no longer be required reading in the Duluth school district due to the books' use of a racial slur, a curriculum change supported by the local NAACP chapter. The two books will continue to be available in school libraries and can be optional reading for students, but beginning next school year, they'll be replaced as required reading by other literature that addresses the same topics in ninth- and 11th-grade English classes, said Michael Cary, the district's director of curriculum and instruction.
ON THE GUNFLINT TRAIL, Minn. — Halfway across Poplar Lake on Monday morning, Jan. 29, Ingrid Pond's dog team decided it was more interested in another group of sled dogs than it was in reaching the finish line. As the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon mid-distance musher was nearing Trail Center Lodge and the end of the 120-mile race, there was an overlap with marathon mushers heading back out on the trail to Grand Portage. A north-woods traffic jam, of sorts.
BAYFIELD, Wisc.—This month's frigid weather hasn't pushed the needle toward opening the popular, ice-coated Apostle Islands mainland sea caves to the public.
Facing a $5.4 million budget shortfall next fiscal year, the University of Minnesota Duluth announced Thursday that it will make budget cuts over the next several years. The university will reduce its budget by $600,000 in fiscal year 2019, which begins July 1, UMD Chancellor Lendley Black announced Thursday, Jan. 11, in employee town hall meetings.