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Ortonville, Minnesota
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December 24, 2002     The Ortonville Independent
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December 24, 2002
 

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SOUTHWEST EXPANSION Thanks to recent GIA status southwest snowmobile trails finally make the map Edit. note: The following article appeared in the September 2002 Minnesota Snowmobiling publication of the MN United Snowmobilers Assoc. Story by Zak Shimanski Minnesotas southwestern corner has seen a resurgence in its snowmobile activity in receri[ years Clubs and groups have been coming together to expand trail develop- ment and improve the safety of trail systems People are starting to take notice of the opportunities that exist along the far western borders of the state, and thanks to the recently received GIA status of trails throughout the area, Minnesotas southwest trail opportunities are literally being put on the map. Before this area was accepted into the GtA program, there were 2,300 miles of snowmobile trails in Minnesota not funded by Grant-In*Aid, 1,8OO of which were located along the western edge of the state in the counties of Swift, Big Stone, Chippewa and Grant. The Grant-in-Aid program is funded by an extra tax on gas. This past year the legislature agreed to increase the tax percentage from 0.25% of one cent to one percent, which in turn provided more funding for trail systems and opened an opportunity for snowmobile clubs in these counties to receive assistance. Many clubs have made efforts and share in the responsibility for making this happen Some of the southwestern clubs involved include the Appleton Ridge Runners, Southwest Ridge Runners (Marshall), Big Stone Lake Snow Riders, Northern Lights (Benson), Snow Drifters (Montevideo), Low Plain Drifters (Elbow Lake) and the West Central Trail Blazers (Morris). All the while the Ridge Runners of Appleton have been right in the center of the action. There are 145 miles of trails in the Appleton system, as well as connections to trails that run adjacent to other systems that are looked after bv these neighboring clubs While the southwestern Minnesota trails are finally gaining recognition, the trails and snowmobile opportunities have existed for quite some time. The Ridge Runners of Appleton first began as an organization in 1970. There are 86 family memberships that contribute to the club and share in the duties. The club&apos;s primary trail concerns are focused on getting land easements, as well as maintaining and taking care of the trails. After being a member of the club for approximately 20 years, Jeff Kack took over tile role of President just one year ago. Kack knows the importance that Grant-In- Aid plays to llis club very well "Getting accepted into the Crant- in-Aid and now being recognLzed as part of the trail system is ahuge steD for us," said Kack "One of our goals when we set out to do this was to increase the safety of recreational snowmobilers in our area Instead of snowmobiling the road ditches and riding so close to passing traffic, 90 percent of our trails run on private land. We went to work to see this through and all tlne landowners were very helpful There was hardly any negative response, and a big 'thank you' goes out to all of the landowners who helped make this happen." The club's effort allows snowmobilers the opportunity to access the scenery available in their part of the state. "Western Minnesota is pretty flat. with some lakes and a few rivers providing the scenery/said Kack The trails steer away from the highways and use the tree lines where snow accumulates. One of the club's main fund raisers is the demolition derby they hold at the Swift County Fair each year Other fund- raising activities include raffles While the club uses the funds to help pay for their trail costs, they have also showed their generosity to the community by making donations to tt-,er day car e center, Dollars for Scholars and the local hospital Kack said that the club aqd all southwest Minnesota snowmobilers are very grateful to MnUSA for- the assistance they provided MnUSA made a i esout;on to help get these trails in western Minnesota into the Crant-ln-Aid program. They worked hard with the DNR and legislators to make it happe,q, q cant say enough about how mucl MnUSA has done for us as a club. said Kack MnUSA s Bob Linn and HaroId Brace both played huge roles in bringing GiA funding to southwest Minnesota. as well as area Representatives Doug Peterson and Torrey Westrom and Senator Charlie Berg In spring the Ridge Runners held a legislative forum that was attended by 300 people, including MnUSA representatwes, legislators and surrounding clubs. "1 am a staunch believer that MnUSA was essential for allowing this happen. Without all of their help I don't know how far we would have gotten. It goes to show how much MnUSA can do for snowmobilers and how important it is to join with them. In our club every member is a member of MnUSA, and we need more snowmobilers to join and help. I firmly believe that without them we'd be in tough shape right now, but they really came through for us" Ask a Trooper I by: Trooper Tim Rust of the MN State Patrol Tim: My daughter is a school patrol crossing guard ,at her elementary school. Over the summer she had the opportunity to attend the Legionville School Patrol Safety Camp. You were one of her instructors at Legionville, and.this fall you came to her school to instruct all the school patrol members. My daughter takes her school patrol duties very seriously. Could you address what is required of motorists at a school patrol crossing? By the way, my daughter had a great time at Legionville! I know just how she feels about Legionville. As the only summer camp that I am aware of on the planet that also teaches school patrol procedures, I have also found Legionville to be a lot of fun! For those who may not be familiar with this summer camp-, Legionville is located just north of Brainerd, Minnesota and is owned and operated by the American Legion. Minnesota State Patrol safety education troopers teach proper school patrol procedures to school patrol members so they are Pain, stiffness and limited range of motion are often associated with neck (cervical spine) problems. Other common symptom related to this area are headaches, dizziness, arm pain and numbness. The neck has seven vertebrae with nerves that pass between them. Strain from overuse, stress, poor pos- ture or trauma can cause malalignment which reduces movement of the vertebrae and results in inflammation. A thorough examination can detect the site of trouble and lead to corrective treatment. It is important to note that studies on treatment of neck problems find spinal manipulation to be very safe when compared to other common treatments. Peterson Chiropractic Clinic Main Street OrtonvUle 320-839-2323 Office Hours: M-W-F 8:30om - 5:00pro; Tues.-Thurs. 8:30om - 12noon; Sat. by appt. able to pass on what they have learned to their fellow school patrol members when they return to their schools. We are very proud of the school patrol history here in Minnesota. Since the school patrol began in 1920, there has never been a fatality at a crossing where the school patrol has been on duty! The history of Minnesota's school patrol is a great tribute to school patrol members throughout Minnesota. Motorists obviously have a vital role at school patrol crossings. When motorists see members of the school patrol at crossing areas please be alert for children and reduce speed accordingly. When school patrol members are about to cross the children at their cross area, we teach them to always raise their school patrol flag directly overhead for a minimum of four seconds to alert any motorists in the area. When the school patrol flag is then extended at a 45- degree angle that flag is a legal stop sign. All motorists are required by law to stop, and remain stopped, until the flag is no longer extended in the" crossing position. _ Unfortunately, inattentive or dlstracted driving contributes to more crashes in Minnesota than any other factor, and illegal or unsafe speed continues to be the primary contributing factor in fatal crashes. While we have never had a fatality in Minnesota where the school patrol has been on duty, there have been some close calls where school children could have been seriously injured or killed. When I instruct our school patrol members I always emphasize how important their job really is.. .they safeguard the people we care about most. As drivers, our job is no less important! If you have any questions concerning traffic-related laws or traffic safety in Minnesota, send your questions to Trooper Tim Rust, Minnesota State Patrol, 3725 12th St. N., St. Cloud, MN 56303. GRAND PIANOS-SALE-50% OFF! Carlson's Piano World has made a speat purchase o! over 30 Grand Pianos and is selling them for 50% off mfr. Also uprights, digitals, keyboards, and used pianos on salel www.caronmusic.com. 5640 W. Broadway, Crystal. FREE 888/533-6117 FREE 2-ROOM DIRECTV SYSTEM INCLUDING INSTALLATION! 3 months Free Show,line Unlimited. Access 225,uannesr Digitality piura & sound. Packages h'om $31,99/mo, Umtod tme offer. 800/474-5069, TIMEsHARE RESALES 60-80% off Retail! Best Resorts & Seasons. Call for FREE Catogl 800/704-0307, Year End CIoseout Thru Decemberl www.hoidaygroup,com MCAPt www. m n news pa per net.org DEER RIVER HEALTH CARE CENTER, s 20 bed Hospital, 50 bed attached SNF, has posons open for RN's in Acute Care, LTC and Home Care; LPN's & NAR's in LTC; & MLT/MT. 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Happy Holidays and &artfelt than00/ Klein National Bank Staff- (L-R) Front Row: Gene Koosmann, Julie Olson, Mona Buer, Deb Call, Greg Monson; qnspirint00 people w make rfieir 00nanc00al dreams come true. 2nd Row: Tammy Weber, Margaret Skold, Karle Sorknes, Cheryl Nelson, Karl Pearson, Ann Pillatzki; 3rd Row: Mary Olson, LuAnn Hansen, Sara Splonskowski, Terri Halvorson, Connie Bacon, Lisa Streich, Colette Berglund; 4th Row: Gary Omland, Tom Madson, Greg Price, Michael DaNe, Dave Berg. Page 4c 00INDEPENDENT Tuesday, Dec. 24,