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IDEA winners announced at sixth annual banquet

BEMIDJI, Minn. -- Inventors and innovators from the region were featured Thursday at the sixth annual IDEA Competition Awards Banquet at the Sanford Center.

Winners who will receive $10,000 to further develop their ideas were:

  •  Coreen and Brian Berdahl of Red Lake Falls for the Reel Deal, a device that transfers fishing line from spools to reels.
  •  Cynthia Krankkala of Thief River Falls for Addy Olly, an infant playpen mattress lining.
  •  Robert Cloose, David Edevold and Phillip Creighton of CR Data Solutions of Bagley for fiber optic cable testing software.

Runners-up who will each receive $1,000 were:

  •  John Szurpicki of Bemidji for the Bedraptor, a landscape tilling blade.
  •  Jenny and Tim Slukynsky of Warroad for an ice resurfacing system,
  •  Marina Lovell of Laporte for Scratch My Aspen, a eco-friendly scratching post for cats.
  •  Don Miller of Roseau for the Skyrocker Telescope, a portable astronomy telescope.

The family of Don Ricke, TEAM Industries founder, accepted a posthumous IDEA Hall of Fame award on his behalf.

The event was organized by the Northwest Minnesota Foundation, a regional development group. The seven finalists were judged by a 12-person committee of representatives from IDEA sponsor groups to have the best product ideas and commercialization plans out of an initial pool of about 20 entrants.

Zach Kayser
Zach Kayser covers local government and city issues for the Pioneer. He previously worked for the Wadena Pioneer Journal, and is an alumni of the University of Minnesota, Morris. 
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