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Deer River to the 7A championship game

The Deer River Warriors staying in the winner’s bracket with a 13-5 win over South Ridge in 7A playoffs on Tuesday. The Warriors will face a re-match with the Panthers on Thursday needing just one win to head to the state tournament.

Jeffrey Moore and Aaron Drotts talked with Gerard Valley after the game.

Section championship will be at Wade stadium on Thursday at 5 pm.

By |June 3rd, 2015|Blog, Sports|Comments Off on Deer River to the 7A championship game|

Blandin Foundation Impact

What impact does the Blandin Foundation have in the Grand Rapids community? That was one of the questions asked by a Grand Rapids area chamber of commerce member during the chamber’s monthly luncheon on Monday.
Doctor Kathy Annette, President and CEO of the Blandin Foundation told members that studies are being done right now to find that answer.
The foundation gives away about $20 million dollars each year to programs that create capacity, not dependency.
The Blandin Foundation, created by Charles K. Blandin in 1941 is the state’s largest rural-based and rural-focused foundation.

By |June 2nd, 2015|Blog, News|Comments Off on Blandin Foundation Impact|

Grand Rapids / Deer River with baseball wins

Grand Rapids a dramatic 9-8 walk-off win over Forest Lake in a 1st round playoff game Thursday. Grand Rapids with 4 runs in the bottom of the 7th to take their first and only lead of the game. Winning run scored on a bases loaded walk to Tanner Shepherd.

Drew Sjostrand with the win in relief of Kyle Stram and had these thoughts after the game.

Deer River one game away from the 7A championship game with a 6-3 8 inning win over Cook County. Gerard Valley was there and wraps up the exciting Deer River win.

Grand Rapids plays Anoka at Forest Lake Saturday at noon. Deer River takes on South Ridge Tuesday in Duluth.

By |May 29th, 2015|Blog|Comments Off on Grand Rapids / Deer River with baseball wins|

Two Grand Rapids Residents Sentenced

Two Grand Rapids residents were sentenced Wednesday on drug charges in Itasca County District Court on charges of selling methamphetamine. 49 year old Scott Robin Steckel entered a plea of guilty to two counts of first degree sale of a controlled substance. Steckel was charged with twice selling an ounce of “meth” to a law enforcement informant. His plea agreement, subject to approval of the court, is for 13 ½ years in prison. His sentence will run concurrent with a drug trafficking sentence from the state of Nevada.
Debra Kay Anderson had already pled guilty to two counts of a controlled substance. On Wednesday, Anderson was sentenced Wednesday to 15 ½ years stayed on the first count and 11 years stayed prison on the second count of felony first degree sale on a controlled substance. Anderson will serve ten years on probation and a year in the Itasca County jail along with other terms.
The charges arose from an investigation conducted by the Grand Rapids Police Department, Itasca County Sheriff’s Office, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, and the Boundry Waters Drug Task Force.

By |May 28th, 2015|Blog, News|Comments Off on Two Grand Rapids Residents Sentenced|

Grand Rapids Adds Housing

Eight parcels of land in the Lakewood Heights area in Grand Rapids have been rezoned. The Grand Rapids City Council last night held a public hearing about the proposed zoning changes. The zoning ruling changes some parcels from medical use to multi-family, residential, high and medium density.
Also at last night’s Grand Rapids City Council meeting Marcia Anderson gave an update on the Grand Rapids Library, reminding people to check out the website and see the many events happening this summer at the library. The city also entered a Memorandum of Understanding with the Public Works Union.
The next Grand Rapids City Council meeting is June 8th at 5 o’clock.

By |May 27th, 2015|Blog, News|Comments Off on Grand Rapids Adds Housing|

Local baseball and softball teams with wins

Greenway softball through to the championship game in 7A softball on the winner’s side with a wild 23-22 win over the Cherry Tigers on Tuesday in Cloquet. The Tigers with a 13 run 4th inning – the Raiders answering with an 11 run 6th inning including a Chelsea Trombley 2 run HR. Maggie Vekich with 6 RBI’s. Cherry and Greenway will play for the section championship game on Thursday with Cherry needing two wins to defend their section title. Some excited Raiders after the game.

Local baseball teams also with successful starts to the playoffs –

Deer River 2 wins on Tuesday 10-0 over North Woods and a 5-3 win over #1 seed Mesabi East.

The Greenway Raiders also with two wins 6-0 over Virginia and 8-5 over Duluth Marshall.

By |May 27th, 2015|Blog|Comments Off on Local baseball and softball teams with wins|

Smokrovich Honored for Safety

Last night, soon to be former Grand Rapids High School principal Jim Smokrovich was presented with a Community Service Award. At last night’s Independent School District 318 Board meeting, the Grand Rapids Police Department wanted to show appreciation to Smokrovich for his cooperation with the department and for improving the safety of the students during his last 13 years with the district. Superintendent Dr. Bruce Thomas (audio).
Also at last night’s ISD 318 school board meeting, the public invited to a meeting Wednesday May 27th at Southwest Elementary school. Community input will be taken for the as the board moves forward with plans for two new elementary schools. The first meeting is at 4 and a second meeting is at 6:30.
The board also approved the hiring of Trent Klatt as the Grand Rapids High School head hockey coach.
The next ISD 318 School Board meeting is June 29th at 7 o’clock.

By |May 19th, 2015|Blog, News|Comments Off on Smokrovich Honored for Safety|

New Hockey Coaches in the Area

Greenway and Grand Rapids both naming new head coaches over the last 2 weeks. Grand Clafton will take over the Raider program and Trent Klatt is the new head coach at Grand Rapids. Trent Klatt was a guest on the Sports Issue on May 9th and Clafton on May 16th. Here are their comments on the new jobs.

Grand Rapids Coach Trent Klatt

Greenway Head Coach Grand Clafton

By |May 18th, 2015|Blog, Sports|Comments Off on New Hockey Coaches in the Area|

Police Officer Memorial Week

On this Police Officers Memorial Day, we remember members of law enforcement who were disabled or killed while performing their duties. In Itasca County, five individuals are honored today.
In 1914, Nashwauk Police Officer August Kokko responded to a fight at a boarding house in Nashwauk and was shot. He died of his injuries.
In 1977, Itasca County Deputy Junita Badavinac died in an auto accident while protecting children from a fire.
In 1977, Keewatin Police Officer Donald Mayerie suffered a heart attack following a foot chase of a robbery suspect.
In 1977, Itasca County Sheriff’s Deputy Dennis Bouchie was killed in a car accident on his way to a fire call.
In 1981, Itasca County Sheriff’s Deputy Robert “Beefy” Lawson was shot and killed serving custody papers.
A short ceremony was held this morning outside the Itasca County Sheriff’s Office.

By |May 15th, 2015|Blog, News|Comments Off on Police Officer Memorial Week|

National Police Week

Grand Rapids has proclaimed this week Police Week in honor of Police Week Nationwide. This year, 273 officers who were killed in the line of duty are being added to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington D.C. The 273 officers include 117 officers who were killed during 2014, and 156 who died in previous years, but whose stories were lost. Over a 101 year period, Itasca County has seen the loss of 5 officers while on Duty.
There will be a live internet stream of Wednesday’s 27th Annual Candlelight Vigil in Washington D.C.. To register for the free event, visit

By |May 12th, 2015|Blog, News|Comments Off on National Police Week|