Local Columns

Barbershop and a state park

This past weekend Ross and I were in Rochester for the Land O’ Lakes Falls District Convention as his barbershop chorus was competing. The chorus he belongs to, West Central Connection Chorus, may be small in number, but it fares well against a lot of the powerhouses like Midwest Vocal ...

Trails to highways

Part II D.H. Evans owned Tracy’s first horseless carriage, a curved dash ‘Olds,’ which was delivered to him on April 11, 1902. After almost three months’ trial, he deemed it sufficiently trustworthy to take himself and Mrs. Evans to the Fourth of July celebration at Marshall. They ...

Nutrition and candy

What could be better than getting to write the “nutrition” column on the “candy” holiday of the year? How do registered dietitians even approach the topic of candy and health and come up with a topic that doesn’t make us sound like Scrooge for this occasion? I’ve had many fun ...

A Halloween cocktale

It was a dark and stormy night in the antique and abandoned necropolis. Because of the heavy rains, the usually slow moving Black Devil River was fiercely flowing but it was far enough away from the weather beaten and forgotten tombstones to not be a threat to them. It was a known fact that ...

Get out and vote

Many see it as an annoyance, a chore, something that’s akin to cleaning the leaves out of the gutters each fall. There are numerous things they’d rather be doing such as washing their hair. They would never admit this, but some haven’t done it for years and years. But others view this ...

In the margins

For a pheasant hunter, or any upland hunter for that matter, areas of marginal land are spaces that must be explored. Small pocket sloughs in the middle of a cut field, grassy ridges that rise out of row crops, or brushy draws and hollows that are tough to access all hold birds. Even extra-wide ...

Keeping our environment clean

Reduce, reuse and recycle. How about refuse to use? The No. 1 issue with litter is plastic bags followed closely behind by plastic straws. How about refusing the plastic bag when you are shopping and bringing your own cloth bags instead? How about taking any plastic bags you have at home and ...

Bolt tests his theories in Minneota

My first introduction to Minneota Police chief Bill Bolt was when reading the Minneota Mascot more than a year ago. Bolt writes a weekly column that appears in the Mascot. I have to admit I paid little attention to it in the past. But the headline on this one jumped out at me: “Minneota ...

A trip to the Great Plains Zoo

I honestly can’t remember the last time I was at a zoo. Perhaps it was the Duluth Zoo 10 or more years ago, I don’t know. Honestly, I’ve only been to less than a handful of zoos in my life — Como Park, the Minnesota Zoo, Duluth and now I can say I’ve been to the Great Plains Zoo in ...

Immune-boosting nutrition

With cold and flu season just around the corner, some of us may start changing our eating patterns to try and help prevent ourselves from catching a cold or flu bug. While many think to add vitamin C-rich foods, there are other nutrients that can help reduce our risk of becoming ill and can ...

Pumpkins and Prohibition

What do pumpkins and Prohibition have in common? Well, let’s just start and see where it takes us. First, a bit of history... We all love our pumpkins. Some of us love to grow them and watch that little bit of growth turn into a eye pleasing orange ball. Some of us love to eat them — ...

Get set for gun season

In just a couple of weeks, hunters’ visions will shift from flushing or cupped wings to antlers bobbing up and down through the trees. The fast-approaching firearms deer season never fails to ambush a few who push their bird hunting or late season fishing right up to the start of the most ...

Trails to highways

Part I The following history is taken from the centennial publication titled “Tracy’s First Hundred Years,” written by Merrill Starr and published in 1971. This book is presently not available for sale, but there is the possibility of republishing it at some future date. These types of ...

Chocolate bars and baseball cards

With the 2018 World Series just around the corner, I recalled a professional baseball-related event from my childhood. It was a “Golden Birthday” for a friend, 1987 Marshall High School graduate Mike Taylor. I was one of about a dozen guests. His mother, retired Marshall Public Schools ...

Why Social Security retirement is important to women

Social Security plays an especially important role in providing economic security for women. In the 21st century, more women work, pay Social Security taxes, and earn credit toward monthly retirement income than at any other time in our nation’s history. But, women face greater economic ...

Dot to dot puzzles in the heavens

When you gaze upon the Marshall night sky, especially in the dark skies of the countryside, you can allegedly see all kinds of people and creatures up there. Right now there’s a disgraced hunter turned hero, two bears, another mighty hunter chasing the bears, a goose, a giant scorpion, a ...

On the bison range

Last Saturday afternoon found us racing toward Blue Mounds State Park near Luverne to hop on board the “bison buggy” for the 3 p.m. Prairie and Bison Tour. This is something I’ve been wanting to do all summer after the Minnesota DNR announced it. It just never really worked out until ...

Can you count on a bountiful investment ‘harvest?’

We’re officially in autumn — the season when we bring in what we planted in the spring. But the concept of planting and gathering isn’t confined to agriculture. In fact, it can be used in many walks of life, including investing. So what can you do to help work toward a successful ...

Ask a Trooper

Question: Other night my coworker got pulled over and was given warning about ride height. It was not slammed to the ground but the trooper said that it was illegal. What is the MN state law for ride height?  Answer: Minnesota law states that if a vehicle’s suspension has been altered by ...