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For Maurices, growth was aided by the recession. The reason?
WILLMAR -- Every year, the offices that process driver's licenses, vehicle tabs, title transfers and boat licenses send about $1 billion to the state in the form of fee-generated revenue. Yet those offices -- some run as a private enterprise -- are struggling to operate in the black.
An elementary school playground is not where you expect to find a group of students who are learning how to program computer games. Video game programming -- and game playing for that matter -- conjures images of dark basements and bedrooms, of hours in the dark hunched in front of a glowing screen. Not fresh air and sunshine. Not a game of tag on slides and swingsets. None of the nine kids in the class seems to mind the break, though. The fourth- through ninth graders spent much of their early afternoon Monday in front of laptops in the North Trail Elementary School media center.
A last-minute fill-in job judging 4-H projects in Scott County has turned into a long-term passion for Bernadette Haberle. Haberle, a Lakeville resident, just wrapped up a week of judging at the Dakota County Fair. She's been a fixture at the local fair and at other fairs around the Twin Cities for the past 25 years, ever since she was recruited to judge Cloverbud projects at the Scott County Fair. Over the years, Haberle has judged everything from rabbit interviews to canning, but it's the Cloverbuds and their projects she really loves.
It might seem like the end of the summer means the end of the mosquito season, but Minnesota Mosquito Control District employees caution against putting that bug spray away just yet. This summer hasn't been bad, as far as mosquitoes go. Though most yards could have used a little more rain, the lack of rain means fewer mosquito eggs have hatched and that means fewer of the blood sucking pests. But late summer is when a different type of mosquito starts to reproduce more abundantly. And that type is the dangerous one. It's the one often blamed for spreading the West Nile disease.
It looks like Brett Favre is coming back to the NFL after all. Several reports indicate that Favre is traveling from his home in Mississippi to the Twin Cities today, and could sign with the Minnesota Vikings this afternoon. Minnesota Coach Brad Childress confirmed the news to the Associated Press. ESPN says Favre will sign a contract today, assuming he passes a physical. The deal would be worth $10-12 million.
BEMIDJI, Minn. -- With the ranks of retired teachers swelling, retirees want more input into state pension decisions. The Legislative Commission on Pensions and Retirement, meeting Wednesday in Bemidji, heard Sen.
GILFILLAN -- Serving in Congress has been like "drinking from a fire hose" since the new farm bill became law last May, Rep. Collin Peterson said Tuesday at Farmfest. The 28th annual farm show kicked off Tuesday morning and Peterson and Rep. Tim Walz, both Democrats, kept the rapid-fire pace up by discussing the economy, government stimulus actions, health care, the economy and cap-and-trade legislation under the big forum tent. The congressmen were not joined by Sens.
OLIVIA -- The body of Spc. James Wertish will arrive at the Dirks-Blem Funeral Home in Olivia between 1:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. Thursday. Wertish, 20, of rural Olivia, was one of three Minnesotan soldiers killed in a missile attack near Basra, Iraq on the evening of July 16. They were all were all members of the 34th Military Police Company, 34th Infantry "Red Bulls" Division. Wertish's body is scheduled to arrive at about 10:25 a.m. Thursday at the National Guard Base in St. Paul. The body will be met by family and a Military Honor Guard.
WILLMAR -- On July 16, just before 9:15 p.m. Iraqi time, Spc. Jacob Benson, 22, of Willmar was talking with his three closest friends and fellow National Guard soldiers at a military base near Basra, Iraq, when a rocket hit, sending him flying. "I hit the ground, and I got back up," he said. What he found were his friends -- Spc. James Wertish, 20, of rural Olivia, Spc. Carlos E. Wilcox IV, 27, of Cottage Grove, and Spc. Daniel P. Drevnick, 22, of Woodbury -- all on the ground, dying. Staff Sgt. Blake Hayden called in an ambulance.