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North Shore News Hour

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News

The North Shore News Hour includes up-to-the minute weather, North Shore happenings in local news, sports and entertainment, as well as a variety of features from WTIP staff and volunteers. If you miss the North Shore News Hour at noon, tune in for a replay Monday through Thursday beginning at 5:00 p.m.


What's On:
Fishburgers are one of the best things about Fisherman's Picnic

Grand Marais Lions Club looking forward to Fisherman's Picnic

The Grand Marais Lions Club has been hosting the Fisherman's Picnic in Grand Marais for decades. This year's event will be August 2 - 5, but the Lions begin their preparations long before that. 

WTIP talked with Lions Bob Laine and Stuart Jackson about their work with the Lions--and about the Fisherburger stand. There may--or may not--even be some singing of the famed Ray From Fishburger Song. 

Here's Rhonda Silence with the Lions. 
 

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Care Partners is raffling this beautiful quilt made by Carol Harris

Care Partners works with community caregivers

Care Partners of Cook County provides support and services to help clients and their families  address the transitions of aging, serious illness and end of life with safety, dignity, and confidence.

Care Partners offers services such as Chore Partners and Caregiver Coffees. The organization also helped create the Dementia Friendly Cook County program. 

To help fund the work of Care Partners, a beautiful 89-by-89 inch quilt by Carol Harris is being raffled. The quilt is on display at Drury Lane Books. Tickets are on sale at Drury Lane Books, Java Moose, Buck's Hardware and Trail Center.

WTIP volunteer Marnie McMillan learns more about Care Partners, its services and some fun upcoming activities in this interview. 

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Grand Portage TribalCouncil members - Chair Norman Deschampe, John Morrin, Marie Spry, Treasurer April McCormick, Bill Myers

Grand Portage seats new Tribal Council members

The Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa members elected to the Reservation Tribal Council in June have officially taken their seats. The Minnesota Chippewa Tribe marks July 9 as the first day on the job for new council members.

Joining the council for the Committee Person I seat is William “Bill” Myers. John Morrin returns to his Committee Person II seat. And April McCormick assumes the secretary/treasurer position on the tribal council.

The Grand Portage Tribal Council consists of a chairman, vice chairman, secretary/treasurer, and two committee members. All positions are four-year terms.

The Tribal Council is the governing body of Grand Portage. The enrolled members of the band elect the tribal council officers who oversee health care, social services, education, jobs, housing, public safety, and more.

 


 
The Grand Portage Tribal Council members get ready to cut the ribbon to dedicate the newly renovated lodge and casino on July 12

Grand Portage Lodge & Casino has a whole new look

The Grand Portage Lodge and Casino hosted a gala celebration on Thursday, July 12, starting with drum song and speeches at the beautiful new entry to the lodge. 

Lodge Manager Steven Standing Cloud welcomed those in attendance and expressed appreciation to all who worked to get the new lodge and casino open and ready for business--a three-phase, three-year undertaking.

Standing Cloud introduced the Grand Portage Tribal Council Members--Chair Norman Deschampe, Vice-Chair Marie Spry, John Morrin, April McCormick and Bill Myers. Together, using special golden scissors, cut a bright, bold ribbon to officially dedicate the renovated lodge and casino. 

The Grand Portage Tribal Council offered drum song and a ceremonial pipe was shared by community leaders. 

WTIP's Rhonda Silence was there and she visited with some of the attendees to get their thoughts on the renovations. 

 

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Gunflint Hills Golf Course awash with wildflowers - Photo courtesy of Grand Marais Parks Department

City continuing hiring process for Gunflint Hills Golf Course superintendent

At the last Grand Marais City Council meeting on June 27, a number of citizens spoke during the public comment period, sharing concerns about the future of the city-run Gunflint Hills Golf Course. WTIP shared some of the discussion here. 

Gunflint Hills Golf Course will again be a topic of discussion at the next city council meeting, Wednesday, July 11. Before that, WTIP caught up with Grand Marais Mayor Jay Arrowsmith DeCoux to learn more about the situation at the municipal golf course. 

City Council meetings are held in the Grand Marais City Council Chamber. Meetings start at 6:30 p.m. with a time for public comment.  

 

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Lin Salisbury

Superior Reviews by Lin Salisbury - Paula McLain

In this edition of Superior Reviews, Lin Salisbury reviews Paula McLain's book, "Love and Ruin".

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The American Legion Post 413 Honor Guard led the Independence Day parade in Tofte

Rain doesn't dampen 4th of July festivities

Although it rained heavily in the morning and sprinkled thoughout the day, the 4th of July festivities at the Tofte Town Park were still enjoyed by many. 

WTIP's Rhonda Silence was there and she shares this report. Click the photo to see more!

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The 2018 Tofte Trek T-shirts bear this logo

Another muddy Tofte Trek 10K in the record books

The Tofte Trek 10K Wilderness Run Walk was yesterday and by all accounts it was a success – it is considered so if participants come away muddy and they did!  

Finishing first in the overall men’s race was Joseph Klecker of Minnetonka, MN. He finished in 38 minutes 59 seconds.

The top local male finisher in the run was Will Surbaugh of Grand Marais, who came in 5th with a time of 42 minutes 32 seconds. Will finished first in his age group of 18 and under.

Will was followed by Colin Treiber of Grand Marais at 45 minutes 31 seconds.

Not far behind them was Ben Seaton of Grand Marais in 10th place with a time of 49 minutes 33 seconds.

The top female finisher in the run was Sage Hurta of Minnetonka, MN with a time of 44 minutes and 37 seconds.

The top local finisher was Sarah Law of Grand Marais in 6th place with a time of 58 minutes 57 seconds.

Finishing first in the race walk for the men was Tim Finnegan of St. Paul with a time of 1 hour 17 minutes.
The top local walker for the men was Jay Halvorson of Lutsen with a time of 1 hour and 50 minutes.
And Jim Wiinanen of Grand Marais did the walk with his grandson, Kaj Erickson. They finished together in 13th and 14th place at 1 hour and 54 minutes.

Ellen Anderson of Tofte was the first place finisher for the women walkers, coming in at 1 hour 24 minutes.
The next locals in the walk were Jenny Kartes and Morgan Johnson, both of Lutsen. They finised in 9th and 10th place.

The Tofte Trek is sponsored by the Sugarbush Trail Association and full results can be seen on their website
 


 
The science lab renovation creates a much larger, more user friendly work space for students

Construction under way at School District 166

Construction is in full swing on projects at School District 166. Rhonda Silence takes a tour to find out more about some of the renovations funded by the $6 million dollar bonding referendum passed in November 2016.

To learn more about bond projects, visit the School District 166 website. Check out “Quick Links” on the left and choose “Bond Update” for more information.

 

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Gunflint Hills golf course

Gunflint Hills golf course in flux

There was a full house during the public comment period at the city council meeting on Wednesday, June 27. About 20 people were there and seven people spoke, sometimes passionately in defense of Gunflint Hills Golf Course Superintendent Mike Kunshier, upon his retirement, stating that they felt he had been underappreciated in his role at the golf course for 27 years.

Kunshier submitted his resignation last October and had agreed to stay on through this golf season, to help train a replacement. However, last week he submitted a letter of resignation, effective July 10.

Kunshier spoke and then a number of golfers, praised Kunshier and took the city to task for not completing a job assessment for his job for many years and for not recognizing the work he has done at Gunflint Hills. Several said he has treated the golf course as his own. Golfers appealed to the council to do whatever they can to keep him on staff through the season.

One supporter even offered to make a donation to cover the expense of keeping Kunshier on staff, perhaps as a consultant.

Golfers were also concerned about rumors that the city was considering closing Gunflint Hills altogether, something Mayor Jay Arrowsmith DeCoux responded to immediately, stating there was no plan to close the course.

Although golfers said they were glad to hear that, they were still concerned about how the golf course would function without Kunshier on board. They urged the council to develop some sort of transitional plan which includes keeping Kunshier involved for the rest of the season.

Mayor Arrowsmith DeCoux thanked all of the golfers for speaking up and letting the community know about the value of Gunflint Hills. He thanked them for being informed on the matter, especially the understanding that the golf course is not a money making enterprise for the city.

He then attempted to answer some questions, noting first that whether Kunshier stays on as superintendent or not, is not up to the city, as it was Kunshier who submitted his retirement earlier than planned.

Arrowsmith DeCoux said when the city learned that Kunshier was unhappy with the fact that other city managerial positions had been evaluated—and that others had received an increase in pay—the city attempted to find a solution.

As the conversation wrapped up,  golfers thanked the city for looking for ways to keep the Gunflint Hills Golf Course viable, but  several stressed the importance of keeping the current superintendent on staff.

The matter came up later in the meeting, during council reports with councilors Anton Moody, Johnathon Steckelberg and Kelly Swearingen expressing surprise at this turn of events. Councilor Tim Kennedy was absent.

Swearingen said she shared the dismay of the citizens who questioned why the golf course superintendent had gone so long without a job description update. She said that needs to change.

In the short-term, the council is faced with the problem of filling the golf course superintendent vacancy. The mayor agreed to reach out to Kunshier once again.

And city administrator Mike Roth said it is now back to the drawing board with the applicants for the position, as the council agreed it will take a special skill set to take over golf course operations without the training from the current superintendent.

The matter will be on the next city council meeting, scheduled for what is now Mike Kunshier’s last day as golf course superintendent, July 10.
 

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