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North Shore News Hour

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  • Monday 12-1pm
  • Monday 5-6pm
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  • Friday 12-1pm
Genre: 
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:
Visit the airport to see sights like this 1938 Stinson Reliant, restored by Roy Aero Service. Photo courtesy of Mike Raymond

Aviation enthusiasts invited to learn more about Arrowhead Eagles

For more than a decade, a loose-knit group of pilots and community members has hosted a fly-in pancake breakfast at the Cook County Airport, as a way to get the community interested in aviation.

Participants wanted to do more and the group is now an official organization, the Arrowhead Eagles, which is working to promote all things aviation.

The Arrowhead Eagles work to encourage the public to partake in aviation in a variety of ways, by promoting flight training and careers in the aviation industry; by providing charitable gift support for aviation related scholarships; by preserving the history of aviation in the county and by conducting activities like the fly-in pancake breakfast.

To do that, the Arrowhead Eagles has obtained nonprofit status. They will be explaining what that means to members – and anyone interested in aviation –at an annual meeting and winter gathering on Saturday, March 2 at 5 p.m. at Raven Rock Grille at Skyport Lodge in Grand Marais.

For more information on the Arrowhead Eagles, call Mike Raymond at 218-370-0373 or Rodney Roy at Roy Aero Service  at 218-387-2034.
 

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Karla Shatzer,a former WTIP morning show host, loves being near anything water - Submitted photo

Catching up with Karla, former WTIP morning host

 In the early days of WTIP Community Radio, when staff and volunteers worked in a tiny studio at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts, Karla Shatzer was one of the volunteers. Karla was a morning show co-host with Bob Carter.

Karla has fond memories of her time at WTIP and we reached out to her to find out what she’s been up to since leaving the station—and Cook County.

Here’s WTIP’s Rhonda Silence with a conversation with Karla.

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Hillary Freeman, sporting her WTIP T-shirt, at Stones River National Battlefield. Submitted photo

Greetings from Stones River National Battlefield

Since retirement, Hillary Freeman and Carol Mork of Grand Marais have enjoyed traveling, but with an interesting twist. While here on the North Shore, they spend some of their free time volunteering at the Grand Portage National Monument. They’ve taken that love of history on the road.

They are currently living and working at Stones River National Battlefield in Murphysboro, Tennessee.

WTIP’s Rhonda Silence spoke with Hillary to learn more about their incredibly interesting and very important work at Stones River.
 

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North Shore Storm PeeWees are District 11 champs - Photo courtesy of the team

North Shore Storm PeeWees are District 11 champs!

Congratulations to the North Shore Storm PeeWee B team on winning the PeeWee district championship. Here's a report on the action from Shane Hoff:

Last weekend, the North Shore Storm won the District 11 PeeWee B hockey championship in dominating fashion by beating Duluth East Black, 9-2. 

The Storm found themselves down 2-1 toward the end of the first period but a big top shelf goal by Hunter Gomez tied it up and less than a minute later Ayden Althaus gave the Storm the lead with a key short-handed tally to finish the first period up 3-2. 

In the second period, the momentum built as Jake Stadler and Althaus each scored on the power play, making it 5-2. 

The Storm came out strong in the third with Althaus and then Stadler both completing hat tricks and Andrew Wehrman and Braylen Hoff each contributing a goal apiece. Stadler and Hoff each also earned three assists apiece with Wehrman and Hunter Rex adding important helpers. Alexa Harrison made several nice saves for the Storm in net to get the “W” and the defense in front of her was superb! 

Earlier in the season, the Storm beat East Black by scores of 8-5 and 5-3 so considering the latest 9-2 rout, it seems the team may be peaking at just the right time. 

This talented, hard-working, group is playing with a high level of confidence right now. They are looking to carry that into the North Region Tournament in Coleraine, March 1-3. 

The District 11 championship gives North Shore a number 1 seed in that tournament and they will face off against the number 2 seed from District 12, Grand Rapids, at 4 p.m. this Friday with Ethan Fransen getting the nod to start between the pipes. 

The competition will be very strong as the Storm PeeWees look to be one of only two teams that advance and represent our Region at the State Tournament March 15-17 in Plymouth. 

At the beginning of this season, Coaches Nick Bjerken, Nate Stadler, Matt Cook and Zach Harrison said their goal was to develop all their players to be contributors this time of year and it’s fun to see that come to fruition.  The focus they’ve instilled in the kids has been about playing their game – not worrying about their opponents, referees or anything else out of their control.  The coaches consistently tell the kids that if they play their game they can match up with any team in the state.   

The North Shore Storm PeeWee team includes players from the Silver Bay and Cook County areas at ages 11-13 years old.  Wish them success if you see them around!  They and their coaches have certainly earned it and we are very proud of them all!
 
 


 
Planning and preparation for Highway 61 reconstruction in 2020 and 2021 continues - File photo by Rhonda Silence, WTIP

Downtown Business Council weighs in on Highway 61 phasing

The City of Grand Marais has received word that the Highway 61 reconstruction project has been pushed back on the calendar. As WTIP has reported, the highway reconstruction that was to take place in 2019 and 2020 is now on the Minnesota Department of Transportation calendar for 2020 and 2021.

That gives the city of Grand Marais – and the many businesses impacted by the upcoming road construction – more time to plan for the disruption of traffic.

City officials and members of the Highway 61 Steering Committee recently met with MnDOT to look at alternatives to the original plan in light of the delay. MnDOT presented two options. One option is to simply move the construction dates out a year and proceed as planned with a complete shutdown of Highway 61 through the city in 2021. That would mean a closure from west of the Java Moose coffee shop to Broadway Avenue for much of the summer.

Another option, now possible because of the delay, is to complete the necessary roadwork at 8th Avenue and at the Broadway Avenue intersection in 2020. That would allow those streets to be used for detours and accessibility when the remainder of Highway 61 work is finished in 2021.

Although all of this work is now more than a year away, planning is happening now. WTIP’s Rhonda Silence checked in with the Cook County Chamber’s Downtown Business Coalition to hear their thoughts on the alternatives offered by MnDOT.
 
To see maps and information on the Highway 61 construction phase options, click below. 

Option A map and information

Option B map and information

 

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Jay Andersen at the mike during a 2016 pledge drive at WTIP

Checking in with Jay Andersen "down south"

After nearly a decade at WTIP Community Radio, our Senior Editor Jay Andersen left the station in August due to some medical issues. WTIP staff missed his wise counsel and listeners missed hearing his voice on the Daybreak program.

Jay could also be heard occasionally on The Roadhouse and he was an integral part of all of the election forums hosted by WTIP.

WTIP is pleased to let listeners know that Jay is doing much better and is now living in Mora, Minnesota with his wife, talented artist Tamara Andersen.

But he is still missed, so WTIP reached out to him to hear his voice again. Here’s WTIP’s Rhonda Silence with Jay.

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Norman Deschampe at the Mount Josephine overlook, May 2012 - Photo Rhonda Silence

February 26 is Norman Deschampe Day in Grand Portage, Grand Marais

The North Shore community lost one of its finest leaders in February. Norman Wayne Deschampe, chair of the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa, passed away on February 9, 2019 – just 17 days before his 66th birthday.

Norman had an impact far beyond the close-knit community of Grand Portage, as far as Washington D.C. and as close as the neighboring city of Grand Marais.

In recognition of his long service on the Grand Portage Tribal Council and his dedication to the community, Grand Portage and Grand Marais have designated February 26 – Norman’s birthday – as Norman Deschampe Day.

Please listen to the proclamation by Grand Marais Mayor Jay Arrowsmith DeCoux and a response from Anna Deschampe, sharing her family’s thoughts on the proclamation of the day of honor.

Click here to see the full Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa proclamation of Norman Deschampe Day. 
 

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Lutsen, Tofte and Schroeder townships meet monthly - Photo by Rhonda Silence

February news from West End townships

The West End townships of Lutsen, Tofte and Schroeder hold at least monthly meetings. There are sometimes additional meetings to prepare for upcoming events, such as the March 12 township annual meetings. All of Minnesota’s counties hold annual meetings and elections on the second Tuesday of March.

WTIP checked in with representatives of each of the townships after their latest meetings.

If you are interested in attending a regular meeting of the town boards, here is their meeting information:
Tofte 
The township of Tofte meets the second Thursday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Tofte Town Hall, 7240 Tofte Park Road. More information available at TofteMN.com.
 
Lutsen 

The township of Lutsen meets the third Tuesday of each month at 7 p.m. at the Lutsen Town Hall located at 116 Caribou Trail. See lutsentownship.com for agenda and minutes.
 
Schroeder 
The township of Schroeder meets the second Tuesday of the month at 7 p.m. at Schroeder Town Hall, 124 Cramer Road, Schroeder. More information about the township is available at SchroederTownship.com.

Election and annual meetings
All of the townships are holding elections on March 12, with polls open from 5 to 8 p.m. The annual meeting follows at 8 p.m.
The Lutsen and Schroeder township elections and meetings are at their respective town halls. Tofte elections and annual meeting is at the Birch Grove Community Center at 9 Good Neighbor Hill Road.

To hear the township reports, click one of the files below! 
 


 
Cook County Search and Rescue

Ice fisherman rescued from Greenwood Lake

At approximately 3 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 24, a report of four stranded ice fishermen whose snowmobiles became stuck in deep slush on Greenwood Lake came in to the Sheriff’s Office. The anglers were using a friend’s cabin on the lake and were able to pick up a Canadian cellular signal to contact the Ontario Provincial Police 911. The Cook County Sheriff’s Office was then contacted by OPP dispatch. Cook County deputies, Search & Rescue, Gunflint Trail Volunteer Fire Department/EMS, Cook County North Shore Health Ambulance and the USFS law enforcement responded.
 
The anglers were not able to communicate their location on the lake. While attempting to locate the victims, Sheriff’s Office snowmobiles also became stuck. About 14 inches of slush were reported on parts of the lake.
 
Deputies were able to extract one of their snowmobiles and Incident Command then used long-track snowmobiles and responders on snowshoes to initiate the search of the on the 2,043-acre lake. Visibility was very limited due to 50 mph wind gusts.
 
At approximately 5:50 p.m., responders located the anglers about two miles in from the landing off Greenwood Lake Road and Fire Box Road. The rescue squad began transporting the parties.

One fisherman, 50-year-old Randall Bush from Cotton, Minnesota, was showing signs of advanced hypothermia, frostbite, and dehydration and was taken to the local hospital for treatment.

The other three individuals involved in the incident are Tamara Grandlund, 51, Thomas Hudacek, 49 and Kevin Steichen, 54. All three are residents of Wisconsin.

Emergency responders were able to stabilize Bush while en route to the ambulance staging area. The party was then transported to hospital for further treatment.
 
Response was slowed due to many roads in the area being impassable this time of year. Roads were also drifted over due to winter storm conditions. Local plowing contractor Al Berglund arrived to clear the road for ambulance access.

Responders began to clear the scene around 8 pm.
 
“We are fortunate to have dedicated emergency response units who risk their own lives going out in conditions like this to rescue strangers, along with our 911 professionals who manage these calls and responder safety from start to finish,” said Sheriff Pat Eliasen.
 
“We are grateful we were able to get these folks out alive and that all of the responders are going home safely tonight. I highly commend everyone who took part in this operation during extremely tough conditions today.
 
Sheriff Eliasen added, “We strongly recommend people heed weather warnings and conditions, let people know where you are going and how long you expect to be gone.”
 


 
More snow is coming to the Northland - Photo by Rhonda Silence, WTIP

Blizzard heading to the North Shore

Another round of severe winter weather appears to be on the way tonight and Sunday. The National Weather Service has issued a blizzard warning for Cook and Lake counties.

According to the Weather Service, surface low pressure will strengthen rapidly as it moves from Oklahoma to northeast Ontario by noon Sunday. Heavy snow and a brief period of freezing rain will accompany the storm system and will affect much of northwest Wisconsin and the Minnesota Arrowhead.

Strong winds are expected and may create visibilities of less than one-quarter mile at times while snow is falling. There is the possibility of gusts as high as 35 - 45 miles per hour, with occasional gusts of up to 50 miles per hour on Sunday.

Snow accumulation of 6 to 12 inches is possible in the warned area, though less is expected in Grand Marais and Cook County. Snow tapers off from southwest to northeast Sunday afternoon. The strongest winds are expected from mid-morning Sunday into Sunday evening with blowing snow likely.

Conditions should improve Sunday night as the storm system lifts away from the Northland and winds diminish.

A Blizzard Warning means severe winter weather conditions are expected or occurring. Falling and blowing snow with strong winds and poor visibilities are likely. This will lead to whiteout conditions, making travel extremely dangerous. Do not travel. If you must travel, have a winter survival kit with you. If you get stranded, stay with your vehicle. The latest road conditions for Minnesota can be found at 511mn.org, and for Wisconsin at 511wi.gov, or by calling 511 in either state.