Kevin Bonham covers news from northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota for the Grand Forks Herald. A North Dakota native, who grew up in Mandan and Dickinson, he has been a reporter or an editor with the Herald and Forum Communications for nearly 30 years.
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MICHIGAN, N.D. -- The only grocery store in this community of 345 will reopen today, just more than four months after it closed. For Fred Wangler, a grocer from Casselton, N.D., it'll be the sixth in a Wangler Foods chain of small-town markets since he started four years ago. "It's kind of amazing to see this look like a grocery store again," Mayor Allen Orwick said. When the former Johner's Fairway closed at the end of May -- leaving the community without a grocery store for the first time in its 125-year history -- there was little question that it would reopen.
HALSTAD, Minn. -- For a small, obscure specialty seed potato producer, the road to continued business success is pocked with potholes. A paved section of Norman County Road 102, which runs from the northwest end of Halstad past Valley Tissue Culture, has been deteriorating for several years.
The North Dakota Farm Bureau president calls this week's decision by the North Dakota Supreme Court to overturn a portion of Ramsey County feedlot ordinance monumental for North Dakota agriculture. "This is a complete and a total win for agricultural in general," Eric Aasmundstad said.
HENSEL, N.D. -- "Cliff, this is my investment plan," Boyd Busse once told his friend and brother-in-law, Cliff Nelson, about the classic muscle cars he collected and stored on his farm. Busse, who died last April at the age of 64, didn't live to see just how good of an investor he actually was. While exact totals are not being shared, the Boyd Busse Classic Muscle Car Collection easily surpassed the $500,000 goal at the farmyard auction. "It was just nuts. It was crazy," said Yvette VanDerBrink, auctioneer and owner of VanDerBrink Auctions, based in Luverne, Minn.
A flash flood watch was in effect this morning for portions of northeast North Dakota and northwest Minnesota. Cities in the flash flood watch include Hallock, Stephen, Argyle and Warren, Minn.; and Cando, Langdon, Cavalier, Maddock, Leeds, Devils Lake, Grafton, New Rockford, Lakota, Adams, Crary, Doyon and Warwick, N.D. Counties in the watch are Kittson and western Marshall in Minnesota, and southeastern Benson, west-central Nelson, south-central Ramsey, along with Cavalier, Walsh, Eddy, Nelson, Pembina, and Towner in North Dakota. The National Weather Service was predicting rainfall amoun
PISEK, N.D. -- Eugene Kachena and Terrance Peterka have shared war stories over the years -- either their own or those of their family and friends. It's one of the things veterans do inside the walls of American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars and other military veterans clubs around the country. Now, the wall outside the Novotny-Kachena American Legion Post 208 has its own story to tell. Wanda Lee has given that wall a voice. The Mayville, N.D., artist on Friday finished painting a giant mural that depicts the U.S. wartime history, scenes that represent 10 U.S.
HENSEL, N.D. -- For years, Boyd Busse was a closet car collector. He kept a '57 Chevy in a neighbor's barn, working to restore it in his spare time on the farm. He stored another classic car in another neighbor's old shop; another treasure on another farm down the road. It wasn't by choice, mind you. He just couldn't keep them at home. "His dad said these barns are made for farm equipment, not cars," said Cliff Nelson, a longtime friend and brother-in-law. Busse and Nelson, who is the brother of Boyd's wife, Karen, started collecting cars about the same time, in 1986.
The Grand Forks County Commission on Tuesday approved a 2009 budget that includes a 1.39-mill cut in property taxes. The County Board unanimously approved the budget after conducting a public hearing in which no one addressed the group. "This is the first time in my time on the commission that we've had no commentary on the budget," Commission Chairwoman Connie Triplett said. The 2009 budget contains 118.84 mills, down from 120.23 mills this year.
The company building a $5 billion pipeline through North Dakota has donated $15,000 to the city of Mountain, N.D., for a proposed $1.5 million community center. The donation from TransCanada Keystone Pipeline Co. moves the campaign past the 75-percent fundraising mark, according to campaign co-chairman Curt Olafson, who lives in rural Mountain. The campaign has been awarded more than $700,000 in U.S. Department of Agriculture grants. It has raised more than $430,000 in matching funds.
When Walsh County Highway Superintendent Sharon Lipsh submitted a $3.5 million 2009 county road budget to the County Commission last month, she figured she'd have to do some cutting. Well, that trimming turned into an $800,000 gash. "That was a budget that was not asking for anything that wasn't needed," said Lipsh, adding that this year's budget is more than $3 million. "We don't have any major projects." Road maintenance costs -- like expenses everywhere -- have exploded during the past few years.