The Cook Timber Days celebration has been known, in the past,
for always having rain on the parade or one of the other days.
This year was no exception.
Friday didn't see rain as the weather was great, in the lower 70s. Saturday was a little warmer, but still no rain. Rain was forecast for Sunday. Well, it did rain a little, but the famous Timber Days parade went off without a hitch. There were sprinkles to start and it did rain a little harder later on, but the parade went off with no delays.
The rest of Timber Days 2013 was another of those great community get-togethers. Cook saw its population triple as friends and neighbors from the surrounding countryside poured into town to meet old friends, taste some of the great food, including the Baseball Boosters' hamburgers.
There were no queen candidates this year selling raffle tickets, but the elementary students at North Woods did a great job, with the Kindergarten Class selling the most. This enabled them to march in the parade and they loved it.
They say that pictures are worth more than a thousand words, so check out the coverage Cook's hometown newspaper since 1903, the Cook News-Herald, has given Timber Days. You will feel like you were there if you failed to attend.
This Cook Chamber of Commerce event puts the eye of northeastern Minnesota on Cook.
See pages 6-9, 14-15 & 18
for Timber Days pictures
At the regular ISD 2142 School Board meeting held Monday at
5 p.m. in Cherry, it was said the graduation rate for ISD 2142
this past year was 92 percent. Cherry had a 96 percent rate, but
that was due to a student coming in and then moving out. LoWanna
Greensky of Indian Education reported that Native American Indians
had a graduation rate of 88 percent.
Supt. Teresa Knife Chief said that Range Mental Health is going to equip three schools with Interactive TV so they can work with district students in need. Knife Chief also said that the CGI program needs sustainability. She finished by saying they should have a Board Retreat which would deal with goals and finances.
Cherry Principal Jeff Carey said they have 12 new enrollees for the upcoming year which could make problems with space. He noted that nearly a third of his staff, seven teachers, have retired and they had 1,703 years of service.
LoWanna Greensky, director of Indian Education, said they had a good sized American Indian population and there were 21 graduates last year. She said they had problems with test scores, but were good in reading, and not so good in math. She spoke of the academic journey program and how 11th- and 12th-graders went on a journey through colleges. They even had a meal. Greensky added, "Let's push the envelope a little bit." She spoke of CGI which would continue in seventh and eighth grades, the Check and Connect program, and Academic Journey.
Gerald Wick of Wick & Associates Inc. spoke of the poor conditions of the fields in the district and how they were having kids play on gravel. Board member Chet Larson noted that drain tiles were in the original plans, but were taken out because of the cost.
The consent agenda was approved. It included 15 donations totaling $3,425 to the district.
The IRRRB has a program called Education Innovation Partners and there was an item asking if ISD 2142 would participate along with 17 other districts. The program would, through leadership and vision of the educational leaders of Education Innovation Partners, Northeastern Minnesota, become known for educational innovation and student achievement, with families choosing to raise their children in the districts and companies seeking to locate in the region because of the high quality workforce the educational system will provide. This program will cost ISD 2142 when implemented, but it wouldn't cost anything by just approving participating in it. The board approved it.
The request to continue funding the CGI innovative program for a cost of $27,839 to the district and $15,000 from Indian Education was next. Supt. Knife Chief was all for it saying they made a three-year commitment to it. She added that she was "a strong believer in CGI." Board members questioned the consultant (Running Horse) getting $35,100 for one day/month times three schools (NER/CHY/SR). A motion was made to postpone this until they know the teachers' commitment to it. It passed, unanimously.
Bids were approved for insurances. Indiana Insurance had a bid of $100,630 for property and general liability insurance, which was approved over the lower bid of $100,307 from Employer's Mutual Insurance. State Fund Mutual received the bid for Workers Compensation with a bid of $210,107.
The sale of the Orr School for $7,001 to the City of Orr was tabled. Orr sent a resolution from their attorney and the district's attorney had not seen it.
The resignation of Northeast Range teacher Ryan Freitas and South Ridge teacher Cameron Lindner were approved.
The retirement/resignation of Cherry math teacher Mary Lou Sixberry was also approved.
South Ridge instructional aide Vicki Preston also had her letter of retirement/resignation approved.
The board next discussed the hiring of the Superintendent's Secretary. Jeanne Sopp was the candidate. Chet Larson said they couldn't hire her since they didn't have a copy of the contract. This was tabled until the next meeting. Supt. Knife Chief will have the contract at that meeting.
North Woods teacher in 2012-2013, Beth Hartway, was changed from probationary to tenured.
Teacher Blake Peterson was formally placed on ULA for .3 FTE.
The board will have a study session at South Ridge on June 24 at 2:30 p.m. before the regular meeting.
A question on the MCA scores was asked and they should be made public in August.
The board commended the sports teams who have done so well, before adjourning at 6:40 p.m.
By Jared Bangs
After a stellar prep baseball career, recent North Woods Grizzlies
graduate Dan Pellinen was selected by the Cleveland Indians in
last weekend's Major League Baseball draft. Not many high school
athletes are honored with the experience of walking in from their
graduation party to find their name on a professional sports draft
report, but such was the case last Saturday evening when Pellinen
and his father sat down at the computer to read about the MLB
The MLB draft spans three days and includes 40 rounds of picks for each team. When the 40th round concluded last Saturday evening, Dan Pellinen's name came up as the 1,191 pick overall, selected by the Cleveland Indians as the organization's final pick. Pellinen explains the moment like this: "We walked in from my grad party around 6 p.m., and my dad sat down to see how the draft was going. I looked over his shoulder and saw my name. He must not have seen it right away, so after waiting a second I finally said, 'Is that my name?' I thought I was seeing things."
If there was any doubt about what Pellinen and his dad saw, all was confirmed a few minutes later when he received a text message from a Cleveland Indians representative stating, "We took you in the 40th, I'll call you later." Needless to say, Pellinen was elated. The phone call came about 20 minutes later and provided Pellinen an opportunity to process the reality of being an MLB draftee.
On the other end of the phone line was a scout from the Cleveland Indians whom Pellinen had previously met while attending a baseball camp at UMD. Pellinen impressed the scout at the camp, and on top of establishing an important relationship, the scout also offered Pellinen helpful advice for attending the right showcases that could earn Pellinen national recognition. Pellinen has spent the last few years honing his skills while attending these baseball showcases, and the effort certainly seems to have paid off.
Beyond congratulations, Pellinen's phone conversation with the Cleveland scout also addressed the practical side of things. Most prep athletes selected in the late rounds of the MLB draft choose not to sign with a professional organization. MLB teams don't make significant offers to late-round picks, and most young athletes will gain more by developing their game as amateurs in the college ranks. Pellinen's case is no different, and both he and the Cleveland scout understood that Pellinen will probably benefit most from some experience as a college baseball player. If Pellinen were to sign with the Indians, he would forfeit his amateur status as a baseball player and never be eligible to play college baseball.
For now, Pellinen's plan is to maintain his commitment to Northern Iowa Area Community College, where he is excited about his opportunity to develop and mature as a ball player. If the hard work and determination that has carried Pellinen so far continues into college, he may find himself higher on a draft report in future years.
But for now, Pellinen is simply relishing the amazement and joy at being selected out of high school for the MLB draft. Phone calls and gestures of congratulations have been pouring in from family, friends, and members of the baseball community; and Pellinen is grateful for the overwhelming show of support he's received.
Perhaps most notable here is the man whose shoulder Pellinen peered over as he first read his name on the computer screen his dad, George. "My dad is probably the only person I know who spends more time on baseball than I do," laughs Dan as he reflects on the people in his life who have carried him so far. He's grateful for the encouragement and support from his dad, and mom, Lucy; and he also cites the coaches who have guided him so far, including Jeff Chaulklin, Ed Chavers, Jeremiah Johnson, Jared Bangs, and Dan Manick. Manick has spent many extra hours working with Pellinen throughout his career.
After discovering on Saturday night that he had been drafted, Pellinen awoke Sunday morning worried it had all just been a dream. He quickly checked the computer to see if his name was still listed as a draft pick. And there it was, plain as day: Selected in the 40th round by the Cleveland Indians, Dan Pellinen, North Woods High School. A dream come true.
The Crane Lake Water & Sanitary District board of directors
has been in operation since 1996. They serve with no pay, but
sometimes they receive a lot of hassle. That is why they probably
appreciated it when Jerry Cornell of East Bay attended the last
regular meeting last Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. in the Crane Lake
Chapel and told them he appreciates the work they are doing. Jerry
has attended many meetings over the years.
Carl Brown's Sewer Rate Analysis and Connection Fee Calculations will be referenced when funding becomes available for the expansions.
It was reported that St. Louis County has provided the information necessary for the Handberg Road Expansion.
The ongoing RLK Engr. arbitration now has a judge. The Honorable Charles Finn has been selected as the arbitration judge. Stephanie Ball of Fryberger, Buchanan contacted him as to his availability for the arbitration.
Chairman Rob Scott reported that $1.5 million was allotted to the CLWSD by the Clean Water Legacy Fund which requires 25 percent matching funds. Funds may be used for capital improvement and engineering services, but not for operation or administration.
Randy Jenniges and Greg Kimman reviewed the S.E.H. packet that was prepared for the Handberg Road Expansion as the main focus. S.E.H. was asked to prepare a similar packet to address expansion in the Bear Island area.
The meeting adjourned at 9:30 p.m.
Cook Lions Million $$$ Garage Sale coming June 21-22-23
Tales of Chicken Duty Woes By: M.V. King
Timber Days 2013 - June 7-8-9 (photos)
Letters to the Editor ...