Saturday, July 31, 2010

One of the logos is painted on the new water tower in Hoffman

I took this photo late on Saturday night around 8:30pm, parked on the east side of the Hoffman maintenance building by the athletic complex. I'll get better pictures of the painting on Monday.

Sometime between 5 and 7pm on Friday night, the painting crew added the new logo and town name on the east side of the new water tower in Hoffman.

Look for photos from that on Monday.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Independence Party hosts organizational meeting in Morris on Thursday night - Horticulture Night held at the West Central Research and Outreach Center

On the left is House District 11A candidate Dave Holman of Morris, the Independence Party endorsee, and the party mascot "Indy", along with Judicial Candidate Glen Jacobson of Olivia.

Below is a glimpse on video of the Anderson family's hosta display at the WCROC Horticulture Night in Morris.

Sue Anderson kept busy selling hostas during Horticulture Night.

More photos from the Horticulture Night event are at the Tribune's Dotphoto online gallery:

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Hoffman's new water tower has its first coat of paint completed today

This video clip was shot on Thursday morning.

On Friday, one of the new logos (including the town's name) will begin to be painted on the tower's cone.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

A little late but I finally found some information on the meeting - Independence Party invites you to Morris on Thursday night

Here's the link for more information:

The Independence Party of Minnesota invites you to an organizational meeting at the Eagles' Club in Morris on Thursday night (July 29). A short social "half hour" starts at 6:30, with a formal meeting at 7pm that will last no longer than an hour.

Here's a link to the official Pope County Fair website

Here's the link:

The 124th annual Pope County Fair runs from August 11-15. Look for more updates as the dates approach!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Candidate forums highlight Farmfest next week near Redwood Falls

Note: I will be attending 1 or 2 days of Farmfest - for sure Wednesday (governor candiate forum) and possibly Tuesday (Congressional candidate forum).

Candidate Forums have been a feature at FARMFEST in every even numbered year for two decades, and 2010 will be no exception, according to Kent Thiesse, FARMFEST Forum Coordinator. Thiesse said that FARMFEST has hosted Candidate Forums for every statewide race for Governor and U.S. Senate since 1990, as well as holding a Congressional Candidate Forum every two years for potential Congressional Candidates in Minnesota Districts that have a major emphasis on the agriculture industry, and a significant rural population.

The focus of past Candidate Forums has been on agriculture and rural issues, and that emphasis will continue again in 2010. Thiesse points out that many Forums during the length of the campaign season cover the vast breadth of issues facing candidates, but the FARMFEST Forums are one time when the focus is much more “fine-tuned” on the issues that are critical to farm families, small businesses, and rural communities.

The "Governor Candidate’s Forum on Rural Minnesota", which will be held at FARMFEST on Wednesday, August 4, at 10:30 AM, has garnered considerable statewide attention, and even some national focus. All five of the major Candidates for Governor of Minnesota have confirmed to participate in the FARMFEST Forum. This includes Tom Emmer, Republican candidate, Tom Horner and Rob Hahn, Independent Party candidates, and DFL candidates Margaret Anderson Kelliher, Mark Dayton, and Matt Entenza. A panel of Minnesota agricultural and rural leaders will pose questions to the Gubernatorial Candidates on a variety of issues affecting farm families and rural communities. The statewide Primary Election is on August 10, and the General Election is on November 2.

The "Congressional Candidate’s Forum on Agriculture and Rural Issues" will be held on the first day of FARMFEST, which is Tuesday, August 3, at 10:30 AM. All Congressional Candidates from Minnesota’s First, Second, Sixth, and Seventh Congressional Districts have been invited to participate in the Forum. Thus far, Congressman Collin Peterson (D) and Lee Byberg (R), his opponent in the Seventh District; Congressman Tim Walz (D), along with Randy Demmer (R) and Steven Wilson (I), his opponents in the First District; and Tarryl Clark (D), who is challenging Congresswoman Michele Bachmann (R) in the Sixth District, have confirmed to participate in the FARMFEST Forum. A panel of agriculture reporters for radio and newspaper will pose questions to the U.S. House Candidates on a variety of issues affecting agriculture and rural communities.

Ideas for questions may be submitted via e-mail to Kent Thiesse, FARMFEST Forum Coordinator, at That information will then be forwarded to the panel members that will be posing the questions to the candidates during FARMFEST.

FARMFEST Forums will be held throughout the day on August 3, 4, and 5, in the Forum Tent on the FARMFEST Site, which is located at the Gilfillan Estate, 7 miles southeast of Redwood Falls, Minnesota. In addition to the two Candidate Forums, the 2010 edition of FARMFEST will include special forums ranging from ideas for Minnesota’s next Governor, to understanding carbon credits, to the future of the livestock industry, and strategies for agricultural education. Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty will be the keynote speaker at the Forum on Thursday, August 5, at 10:30 AM. All of the Forums will provide ample time for questions, and follow-up discussion by Panel members.

Skilly and Duff perform at the Grant County Fair last Friday

A few fun facts on WCA's new football coach - 2001 Knights' alumni David Drexler

David Drexler is a 2001 graduate of WCA, and he was the Heart O' Lakes Conference MVP during his senior year in which the Knights went 7-3 overall and were runners-up in the HOL. He passed for 1452 yards his senior year, and had a 51% completion rate! He also ran for 6 touchdowns and passed for 13. As PAT kicker, he tallied 23 points his senior year as well.

More noteworthy was Drexler's junior year in 1999, when the WCA Knights went all the way through playoffs to the Prep Bowl, where they lost to a very tough Waterville-Elysian-Morristown Buccaneers team. WCA went 13-1 that year, including an 8-0 regular season and an HOL conference championship. Drexler was the featured quarterback that season as well, and he finished with 1270 yards and a 52.8% completion rate. That year the Knights were a run first, run second, and then think about passing team led by senior Jake Sternhagen, who finished with 1,902 yards on 348 carries (5.5 yard average) and 27 touchdowns.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Glenwood's Waterama hosts Bald Eagle Ski Show over the weekend

A pirate catching some air!

Video clips from the Bald Eagle Ski Show will be uploaded for viewing over the next couple days.

Here's the Star Spangled Banner being played before the ski show on Saturday night in Glenwood.

Below is a video from the kiddie parade held on Saturday afternoon in Glenwood.

Visit our Herman-Hoffman Tribune website to see pictures from a few Waterama activities on Saturday and Sunday. Click on the Dotphoto link and search for the "2010 area town celebrations and county fairs" album.

Food for thought! (click to enlarge)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Here's a video clip of one of the pig races held on Friday afternoon at the Grant County Fair

The pig races drew large crowds of all ages to the Grant County Fair on Friday. More pig races are being held today as well.

Visit the Herman-Hoffman Tribune website to download the full schedule of the fair. The download link is on the left hand column.

Friday, July 23, 2010

55th annual Glenwood Waterama is this weekend, running through Sunday

For more details, read this week's issue of the Herman-Hoffman Tribune, with a front-page story including the activities' schedule in Glenwood.

Below are a few scenes from the 2009 Waterama that I took while helping out the Pope County Tribune...

It's official, WCA will ask voters to increase property taxes at the polls this fall - just as I've been saying all year long

Breaking the regular monthly meeting of the West Central Area school board on Monday night, it was decided that the district will ask taxpayers in November to increase the levy from the current $950 per pupil to $1,370 per pupil. The duration of the levy hike is for five years.

The current levy expires in 2012, and it represents approximately $665,000 in funding for the annual school budget.

The board had asked voters to hike the levy to $1,250 per pupil for a period of 10 years last fall. The final tally was 497 yes to 571 no votes, a narrow defeat of just a few percentage points.

A full story on this written by Chris Ray of the Grant County Herald will appear in the July 29 issue of the Herman-Hoffman Tribune.

My 2 cents: voters should have passed last year's levy hike. By not passing it, even greater pressure will be placed on the passage of this year's referendum and the school's budget will be in a very serious situation if it fails.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Discussion and update on the new water tower logo painting in Hoffman

Phil Corrigan gave an update on the new water tower painting at today's meeting of the Hoffman Commerce and Ag, held at Bullfrog's on July 22.

The upcoming Grant County Fair and Hoffman Harvest Festival posters are available for downloading at our website

This weekend is the 116th annual Grant County Fair, at the fairgrounds in Herman, MN. It begins today and runs through Sunday, July 25. You can view the schedule at our website.

Also, the upcoming Hoffman Harvest Festival poster is available for viewing at the Tribune's website. Find the download link on the left hand column on the homepage.

It will be helpful if you have a fast internet connection, as the PDF file is fairly large in size.

The 62nd annual Hoffman Harvest Festival runs from August 13 through August 15.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

More views from the West Central Research and Outreach Center's centennial celebration on July 16 in a "crop update" from MPR

In a report given on Minnesota Public Radio this morning...the headline is "Farmers are seeing lots of green".

A few notes...35% of Minnesota's corn crop is in excellent condition. Only one other year dating back to 1986 was better, in 1994, when 43% of our corn was excellent... in 1986 it was 35% excellent.

Soybeans are 25% excellent.

The state's best crop currently is barley, 36% rated excellent. Barley is being harvested now in small amounts, plus sweet corn.

It's early to predict but we are on track to set records. "Rain makes grain" and that's what has taken place in 2010.

We also are having what some say is a bumper crop of bugs... stories are being circulated about exploding insect populations. In SW MN, the "earwig" bug is growing in numbers. They are crawlers about a 1/2 inch long...they can get into houses and crawl around on the floor. Experts say the bug is harmless, if not gross.

Back to the WCROC centennial...
In this 5+ minute clip, the topic of the money in agriculture is discussed, including the U.S. "cheap food" policy and also the power of large agribusiness in the marketplace. At about the 4:00 mark, a member of the crowd brings up agriculture's "wealth distribution problem" - this all took place at the West Central Research and Outreach Center's centennial celebration in Morris, MN on July 16, 2010.

Below, George Boody talks about agricultural diversity.

Democracy loses when money talks

Below is a column that appeared in the Populist on June 1, 2010. The link to follow it is: It was written by Jim Van Der Pol, a Kerkhoven-area hog farmer who is featured in one of the video clips on my Herman-Hoffman Tribune videos page speaking at the WCROC centennial on July 16 in Morris.

Here is the text of his column about Corporate America...

The most important result of the recent Supreme Court handover of politics to the corporations is a sense of helplessness in the general population. This is the corporations’ most important asset. Nothing they have creates more in the way of profit opportunities, or removes more legal and moral obstacles to those profits. There is a real sense in which the recent decision by the corporate boosters on the Supreme Court was just an effort to add to the general sense of helplessness by killing any possibility of control on political spending. After all, the corporate structure had been able to purchase political decisions at will leading up to that decision, so it is hard to reach any conclusion other than that the effort was a kind of psychological warfare, a throwing of yet one more straw on the already broken camel’s back.

We need to look for tools. While we mount whatever effort we must to get our national government back from the wealthy, we should think about what we can do in the rest of our lives, but haven’t been doing. An antidote to a feeling of helplessness is to do what we can. Let’s look for examples of people living healthy wholesome lives in spite of the current corruption and decay. No despairing farmer will need to look far. The Amish have been there as a teaching example for farmers (and others) for generations now. The Amish and the Mennonites are farming communities made of small farms and the various businesses and trades that support them. Many of those communities thrive and many of the farms are excellent. We in the larger culture have never taken them seriously, thinking of them instead as cute or quaint or just plain backward. Now is the time for us to rethink that.

This is no wholesale endorsement of the Plain folks. Sometimes they place too much emphasis upon practices or rules that don’t appear to mean a great deal, at least to me. I once saw a young Amish fellow in Pennsylvania hiking along against a stiff breeze on a twenty degree February day wearing a straw hat and I had trouble seeing what would have been so wrong about putting on a stocking cap. Their religion would give me endless trouble as it appears to be very patriarchal and strict. But they do take Christianity seriously and apply it across all of their lives, something that none of the rest of us do. If the country were populated with a majority of Plain folks, the Wall Street meltdown would not have happened. It could not have, as they apply Christian principles to their economic activity every bit as much as to their sexual morality.

This is why their farming looks quaint. They make decisions about machinery purchase and other agricultural progress by asking how it will impact their neighbors. Machinery purchases that hurt the neighbor, or lessen anyone’s need for the neighbor are simply disallowed.

Sizeable numbers of people are not about to become Amish anytime soon. But what would happen if we took their idea of caring for their neighbors into our own lives and tried to make it work in our own way? It might surprise us. We would need to call into question our taking of farm subsidies, for instance, because they do not encourage care of the earth and because they favor large crop farms and livestock concentrators above everyone else. They hurt all except a very few of our neighbors.

We might get together in our state governments, which are still partly under our control, around the establishment of a state owned bank, partly funded by serving as the institution of record to handle all the funds of all our local and state governments. We could do this as an attempt to keep as much of the wealth we generate as possible out of the hands of the military-industrial complex and the Wall Street criminal class. We could write into its charter the directive to make available a certain percentage of its assets for student loans to people who want to live and work in rural areas, and for micro loans to startup businesses.

For those of us who live in Minnesota, we can take advantage of the state’s law that any bank loan collateralized by a certificate of deposit can only charge two percent more than the certificate receives. Those of us with some money to invest for retirement could look for promising young people with business ideas that need funding, and offer to collateralize loans in return for whatever good faith we need in return. Not only would the investment build faith and trust and goodwill right in our own communities, it would start to restrict the seemingly endless supply of no-strings-attached cash through mutual funds and 401k’s that fund world wide corporate predation.

Then there is how we shop. First, we could learn to shop less, as the activity pretty generally hurts the earth while serving as a pipeline for our wealth to migrate toward the corporations. It does us good to do without some things, and it makes us notice the people around us more, as we will begin to need them more. We will need them to teach us how to grow food and where to find food as we become more reluctant to spend money in the grocery store. Growing some of our own food and then carefully shopping for the remainder is the very best kind of personal health care support and it is available to most of us without waiting for government’s permission.

And then we need to study the ways and means of shopping smart. For example, most of the fossil fuel industry is right wing, some of it rabidly so. They buy politicians and foster right wing government. Figuring out how to use less of their product is just common sense. Some (but not all) of the largest retail outlets support radical right wing Christian groups. We need to know which they are and act accordingly. We need to ask who benefits from the fact that I can’t seem to find a pair of pants made in this country, and if I might not be better off in general if I needed to pay more for American made clothes.

All of these changes seem impossibly slow, if not beside the point. But then someone needs to explain to me how we can hope to control corporations in our government as we continue to so enthusiastically support them with our dollars.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

7th annual Grant County Fair Ag Bash is coming on Friday night!

Click on the top advertisement about the Ag Bash for more info.

Community vitality - the Horner plan to create jobs and strong local economies

On July 15, Tom Horner and Jim Mulder, Independence Party candidate for governor and lieutenant governor, respectively, announced the first of three Horner-Mulder proposals to revitalize Minnesota communities. Today's proposal focuses on economic development; in the future, they will bring forward specific proposals on investments in human capital and strengthening local decision-making.

"We can't fix Minnesota's problems if we don't have healthy communities. To revitalize communities, we need to give them the tools and resources to compete,” said Horner. “The proposals offer a balanced approach of state and local investment, planning and support for rebuilding the economic development foundation of Minnesota’s communities.”

According to Minnesota's Labor Market Information office, some 128,000 Minnesotans have lost jobs since 2008. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics; the unemployment and underemployment rate is 7% and 14.2%, respectively. The number of Minnesotans underemployed is 423,713.8, which -- in terms of our Minnesota cities -- is more than the population of Brooklyn Park, Bloomington, Duluth, Rochester, and Plymouth combined.

Just for perspective, the unemployment rate in 2000 was just 3%.

The economy has made it a difficult time for all Minnesotans, and the policies of Democrats and Republicans -- including the budget passed by the 2010 Legislature -- are forcing school districts into four-day school weeks and communities into cutting or eliminating vital services, including public safety. Minnesota needs the next governor to take on the state's big challenges and craft strategies and principles that lead the entire state into the future.

The overall goals of the Horner-Mulder proposal are to invigorate local economies and create a mix of jobs, including good career jobs in cutting edge industries. We will accomplish this through three broad legislative areas:

* Creating Jobs: To spur economic growth, we will propose: funding applied research at the University of Minnesota and other higher education institutions that open doors to new industries; promoting innovation and new technologies that come from our educational institutions and add value to the entire state; and exempting businesses from the state sales tax on capital purchases.

* Improving Infrastructure: The proposal assures that local communities have the infrastructure that businesses need to grow, compete and prosper, especially in the areas of transportation and technology. Examples include expanding the state broadband backbone to ensure that each Minnesota community, business and citizen has access to the next generation’s super highway and moving forward on a strong transportation network that can move product to markets and support worker access to jobs.

* Investing in knowledge: Minnesota needs to be known as the knowledge state, and we achieve this through a trained work force. A vital element of a solid economic development plan is to coordinate state supported education and training programs that meet the needs of expanding businesses in every community.

“As a state we must recognize that for many communities adding one job to a local manufacturer or to the construction a new home, which keeps local carpenters, plumbers and electricians working, is economic development,” Mulder said. “And lasting and thriving economic development calls for forward and independent thinking that brings new types of jobs and technology to people in every corner of the state.”

For more information regarding Horner’s campaign, log on to Horner's website:

Hoffman Harvest Festival garage sale info due by August 4

The Herman-Hoffman Tribune is currently accepting garage sale information during the Hoffman Harvest Festival, which will run August 13 through August 15. The Tribune asks that anyone organizing a garage sale in Hoffman must submit the information via e-mail with a due date of August 4. The e-mail requirement will eliminate the chance of errors for the garage sale map and list that the Tribune will be putting together.

If you are reading this on my blog then you probably have the ability to e-mail me the information.

The e-mail to submit them to is Upon receiving the e-mail, we will reply that we received it. Any submissions after August 4 will not be included in the map or list, because they will be printed on the morning of August 5.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Also coming this weekend - the 55th annual Glenwood Waterama

You and your family will have no shortage of choices for entertainment venues this weekend, as the Grant County Fair and the Glenwood Waterama both begin this week and run through Sunday.

Look for more updates throughout the week.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The 2010 Grant County Fair kicks off next week on Wednesday, goes from July 21 to July 25

The 116th annual Grant County Fair kicks off next week in Herman, MN.

Visit the Herman-Hoffman Tribune website to download the full fair schedule.

See you at the fair!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Great crowd turns out for West Central Research and Outreach Center's Centennial Day in Morris

A great crowd was on hand to help celebrate the 100th anniversary of the West Central Research and Outreach Center in Morris on July 16.

In the two video clips below, George Boody talks about the importance of "agricultural diversity" in our world. He is the executive director of the Land Stewardship Project.

Photos from the event, which can be viewed in a slideshow order that gives you a good idea of what was discussed in the afternoon, can be viewed at the Herman-Hoffman Tribune's Dotphoto online gallery.

Click on the "Dotphoto" link on the left hand side of our website.

More will follow later tonight.

Finals held for the Prairie River Baseball Association playoffs on Thursday night

Final scores from the championship round of the Prairie Rivers Baseball playoffs, games held in Ashby on Thursday night:

White Sox 12, Orioles 1 - Championship game.

Cubs 7, Pirates 3 - Third/Fourth place game.

Twins 5, A’s 4 - Fifth/Sixth place game.

Cardinals 9, Diamondbacks 8 - Seventh/Eighth place game.

Hats off to all the teams, their coaches and players, on a very successful inaugural season!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Hoffman's new water tower is getting its first touches of new paint today

Today the first coat of paint on the exterior of the new water tower started to get added.

A video of the action is being uploaded to the Tribune website's videos page right now.

Check back on Friday to see more video and pictures of the painting.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Tom Emmer would sign a cut to the minimum wage, if the Legislature approved it - One restaurant worker labels Emmer's comments "abhorrent"

More breaking news...

From Minnesota Public Radio today:

Ann Potter, who works at a downtown Minneapolis restaurant, said Emmer is attacking those who earn the minimum wage.

"We work so hard. Most of us don't have health insurance. Most of us don't have 401(k)s. Most of us don't have any type of financial protection," Potter told Emmer. "I am just absolutely enraged with what you had to say. I find it to be abhorrent."

Wait, wait! It gets even better! Read this...Tom Emmer would sign a CUT to the minimum wage!

Again, from MPR:
He refused to tell reporters what he meant when he initially said a tip credit had to be considered.

But in a phone interview earlier this week he said he would cut the minimum wage if the Legislature approves.

"If somebody is going to pass that through the Legislature, we would absolutely sign it," he said.

So, rural Minnesota, how does all this smell to you?

Tom Emmer - Liar, Liar, Pants on Fire! No, Tom, you cannot "win this issue"

From the Star Tribune:
Emmer has complained that his comments are being misrepresented. He recently told the Republican Jewish Coalition that the press is "not reporting truthfully and honestly and accurately." An Emmer fundraising letter sent Tuesday said, "The adage 'don't believe everything you read in the newspaper' has never been more true."

Bill Walsh, deputy campaign manager for Emmer, said the candidate does not want to cut wages but merely cap server wages in the event of a future minimum wage increase. While the overwhelming majority of states have a tip credit, that is what Emmer meant by a Minnesota tip credit, Walsh said.

Tom Emmer, you are a bald face liar and we in the media will not let you get away with it. Your story has changed so many times in the past week about what you really think about how much money servers and waitresses earn, I think only God knows what you think at this point.

We won't let you off the hook. So if your criticism of the media continues, you haven't seen anything yet.

Click here to tune in live to the town hall meeting with Tom Emmer and servers in St.Paul: Coverage begins at 3:30pm today (Wednesday).

You will need a very good internet connection to hear and watch the town hall meeting.

**Update at 5:26pm...this was reported in the Star Tribune.

Bill Walsh, an Emmer campaign spokesperson, wouldn't say whether he thinks Emmer can, "win the issue." He did say "we've had a bad week" but added that was the media's fault.

Tom Emmer, stop blaming the media when we quote what you say in context and then report it to the public. Stop being a weasel!

Minnesota House Republicans - the media is watching you and listening to what you have to say about the minimum wage and cutting wages for workers

Here's part of an e-mail sent out from House Republican leader Kurt Zellers, in which he points out that it's not a good idea to pick on low-wage workers! (Duh)

You should know that the House Republican Caucus has generally supported a reasonable compromise on the tip credit issue. When talking about tip credit, keep in mind the issue is not one that plays well with the general public, as they are sympathetic to restaurant servers.

Here's a quote from a server who works in St.Paul: Lissi Corbett, a St. Paul server, agreed, saying she not only makes far less than $100,000 a year, “you could not pay me $100,000 to vote for Tom Emmer.”

Final scores from Tuesday night's playoff games for the Praire Rivers Baseball Association

White Sox – 3, Pirates – 2

Orioles – 18, Cubs – 1

A’s – 2, Diamondbacks – 1

Twins – 1, Cardinals - 0

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

I'm excited to attend this, the West Central Research and Outreach Center's celebration of 100 years of agricultural research - this Friday in Morris

Below is an invitation I received from the Land Stewardship Project, a message I want to share with you.

The West Central Research and Outreach Center near Morris is celebrating 100 years of agricultural research on Friday, July 16 at their "Summer Centennial Center Day" and we hope you'll join Land Stewardship Project in attending this event.

Land Stewardship Project and sustainable family farmers from across this region have a long and rich relationship with the Center. From Dennis Johnson's career focus on how family, low input and grass based dairy farms can work for farmers and rural communities and now his organic dairy herd to the Alternative Swine Housing Systems Program headed by Dr. Yuzhi Li with an advisory task force of area hog farmers, WCROC has been a leader in sustainable agricultural research and support. And the organic dairy herd and alternative swine systems center happened in significant part because area farmers, LSP and others lead the way in setting the agenda through state appropriations. Most recently, WCROC, with the University of Minnesota Morris, is expanding research and demonstration in the renewable energy area. By being part of their celebration we can voice our appreciation for the past and help ensure the Center?s programs and research efforts continue down a path that supports viable family farms and vibrant rural communities.

The day begins with tours and presentations of the research and demonstration projects starting at 7:30 AM. At 11:30 lunch will be served (you need to preregister and pay-call 320-589-1711 if you want to have lunch.).

The Centennial Program begins at 12:45 and runs till 3:30. It features a panel, "A Path to a Viable Agriculture in 2110" that includes LSP Executive Director George Boody talking about the role of diversity and Jude Capper, an Associate Professor of Animal Science at Washington State University discussing the role of intensive agriculture for our future. We expect a lively and informative debate!

Here's a link to show Tom Emmer saying on video that he supports cutting restaurant server/wait staff wages - and get this... he is still lying!

Here is a comment left on a Star Tribune story about Tom Emmer's "Waitergate" problem.

"Rep. Tom Emmer, you have our attention. We will be keeping a close eye on you. In our industry, word spreads like a wild fire. We show up to vote when there is a known enemy."

The comment was left for the following story, which you can read by clicking on this link:

Click on this link to see that he is still lying about the comment that some servers make $100,000 a year. That is part of his logic on why we should cut the minimum wage for servers and wait staff.

It just never seems to end.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Prairie Rivers Baseball Association playoffs begin tonight

Here's a pre-game clip from the dugout of the Pirates team, before the first game of a PRBA double-header at the Hoffman athletic complex.

Here is a video clip from during the game.

Final scores from Hoffman in Prairie River Baseball Association playoff action tonight:

Pirates defeat Cardinals 8-5, White Sox win 3-1 vs. Twins, with the two winners facing off on Tuesday night (tomorrow) in Evansville in the nightcap.

In games held at Evansville on Tuesday night, the Cubs beat the Diamondbacks 5-2 and the Orioles beat the A's 13-12.

Great job to all athletes and coaches!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Tom Emmer will hold a town hall meeting in Roseville to discuss his idea to lower the minimum wage for servers at bars/restaurants

More information will follow on this today and leading up to the event on Wednesday (July 14).

I am so angry about this idea to bring the minimum wage to $2.13 an hour for servers and waitresses that I have to cool down before I share my opinions in a public forum.

One of Emmer's failed use of logic is this: Compare Fargo to Moorhead, and you can see that Fargo has many more restaurants than Moorhead does. According to Emmer, this is because North Dakota has a lower minimum wage than Minnesota does (for servers) and therefore, Fargo is more attractive to the restaurant industry.

Hmm, let's think about this. Fargo has a population of about 96,000 and Moorhead is at about 36,000. Perhaps the fact that Fargo is 3 times as big as Moorhead has something to do with it having more restaurants?

Tom, why does Alexandria have more restaurants than Glenwood does? Does it have anything to do with population? Just, maybe?

Come on Tom, you are running for Governor of Minnesota. You need to think before you speak!

Here is a link to a commentary page from Don Davis in the Echo Press:

Here is a link to another story, written by a friend of mine who is an accomplished journalist, at her Bluestem Prairie blog:

She has aptly dubbed this whole drama as "Waitergate."

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Tornado warning in effect for the Hoffman-Kensington-Farwell area

It appears that the area is getting knocked between the eyes from some severe weather - tornado warning is in effect!

Trained weather spotters reported a funnel cloud north of Morris at 5:31pm. This dangerous storm was located 6 miles southwest of Hoffman, or 12 miles north of Morris, moving east at 20 miles per hour. I took this photo from Highway 28 between Cyrus and Starbuck at 5:35pm, facing the direction of Hoffman.

Update at 5:54pm...radar was tracking a severe storm with strong rotation. The most dangerous part of the storm was near Kensington, or over Kensington, and moving east at 15 miles per hour.

Locations in the warning include Alexandria, Glenwood, Lowry, Starbuck, Long Beach, Forada, Sedan, Farwell, Holmes City, Nelson, and Villard.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Semi tractor struck by train near the Grant/Douglas County line between Hoffman and Kensington along Highway 55

From the Echo Press:

The crash happened at about 12:20 p.m. on the Canadian Pacific railroad tracks in Douglas County just east of the border with Grant County.

A preliminary investigation showed that the semitrailer driver, who was working on a resurfacing project on Highway 55, was traveling west on Highway 55 and turned north onto Sandy Hill Road/100th Avenue, according to the Douglas County Sheriff's Office.

The semi cab was struck on the passenger side by a westbound Canadian Pacific Railway train. The semi driver, Jeffrey Scott Klinkhammer, 52, of Moorhead, was ejected from the cab.

Klinkhammer was transported to the Douglas County Hospital. No other injuries were reported.

Both sheriff's offices from Douglas and Grant counties and the State Patrol responded to the scene. The Kensington Fire Department and First Responders, North and Hoffman Ambulances also assisted.

American Red Cross Blood Drive coming to Hoffman on July 15 (next Thursday)

Click on the photo to enlarge for more details.

Franken’s Staff To Meet With Seniors In Alexandria

Senator Seeking Minnesota Input For Upcoming Debate On Older Americans Act

With millions of baby boomers beginning to retire next year, Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) announced today that his staff will be in Alexandria on Friday, July 16. Franken staff will meet with area seniors about the unique challenges they face in their retirement years.

“From home foreclosures, to health care, to retirement security, hundreds of thousands of Minnesota seniors – especially those in rural areas – are dealing with issues that affect their well-being,” said Sen. Franken. “Next year, as the large U.S. Baby Boomer population begins to retire, I want to ensure that we are prepared as a state and as a nation to meet our seniors’ needs. The input I get from Minnesotans at these meetings will be valuable to me as the Senate takes up the Older Americans Act next year.”

Sen. Franken serves on the Senate’s Special Committee on Aging as well as the Subcommittee on Retirement and Aging of the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions. Next year, both of these panels will reauthorize the Older Americans Act, which funds many of the local services used by seniors. Sen. Franken said the meetings will allow his office to hear from Minnesota seniors about what is working and what needs to be changed to allow Minnesota seniors to thrive in their retirement years.

Sen. Franken’s staff will be meeting with seniors to discuss the unique challenges they face at the following location:

Nelson Gables, Governor’s Room
1220 Nokomis St., Alexandria
10:00 a.m. CST, Friday, July 16

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Hoffman City Council tours new water treatment plant following their monthly meeting

The trusses for the new treatment plant were just added on Tuesday this week.

Other videos from the council meeting have been added to the Tribune website's videos page. They are of the discussion held with Tesch's Grooming, a new business in Hoffman that requested variances on the animal ordinances in Hoffman.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

West Central Area South Summer Rec programs are winding down for the summer season

Below, the WCA South Pee Wee baseball team lines up during practice for a throwing/catching drill. They hold practices and games at the Hegg Memorial Field complex in Kensington.

See more photos from the WCA South Pee Wee's in this week's July 8 issue of the Herman-Hoffman Tribune.

More photo albums of various items have been added to the Tribune's Dotphoto gallery, which you can find by visiting our website:

A couple photos from last week's Republican rally in Fergus Falls

Tom Emmer stands next to his running mate, Annette Meeks, prior to speaking at the rally in the Perkins Restaurant parking lot in Fergus Falls on July 1.

I got a chance to meet the Emmers, Jacquie and Tom, and came away feeling like they are down-to-earth people.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Prairie Pioneer Days coming this weekend to Morris

Click on the image below to enlarge it.

The schedule for Prairie Pioneer Days will also be published in this week's Herman-Hoffman Tribune.

One error in the poster, the zoo encounter, music, and wagon rides sponsored by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is from 12pm to 4pm. (The poster says 12 to 3)

Happy Fourth of July!

Saturday night fireworks up North at a cabin I stayed at with my family this past weekend.

The Herman-Hoffman Tribune office in Hoffman will be open from 1:00pm to 6:00pm today, July 5

My office in Hoffman will be closed this morning. I'll be in town by 1:00.

On tap for Tuesday night (July 6) is the regular monthly meeting of the Hoffman City Council, set for 7:00pm at City Hall.

This is a change from the regular date of Monday night. The change occurred last Friday.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Klobuchar and Senators Vote to Remove Liability Caps on Oil Industry

Klobuchar and Senators Vote to Remove Liability Caps on Oil Industry
Washington, D.C. – At an Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee hearing, U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar and her colleagues today passed legislation that would eliminate the liability caps for oil companies following disasters. Klobuchar is a cosponsor of S. 3305, a bill that would lift the liability cap for offshore drilling accidents and ensure that workers, coastal residents, fishermen, and taxpayers not shoulder the burden of oil companies’ risky behavior. The current law places a $75-million liability cap on the amount that oil companies are required to pay for disasters like the Gulf oil spill.
“The oil industry should take full responsibility for the safety, economic, and environmental consequences of its actions,”Klobuchar said. “Removing the liability cap will mean that the companies at fault, and not the American taxpayer, will be fully responsible for compensating the country for disasters like the Gulf oil spill. I look forward to voting for this bill in the full Senate,” Senator Klobuchar stated.

At an EPW Committee hearing earlier this month, Klobuchar discussed the impact that major oil spills have on families and businesses. Klobuchar highlighted the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill where Exxon executives fought against paying damages and compensating fishermen for years, even after pledging to pay all costs. An estimated 8,000 of the original Exxon Valdez plaintiffs died while waiting for their compensation as Exxon fought them in court.
The oil slick has become one of the nation's worst environmental disasters in decades, threatening local industries and economies, as well hundreds of species of fish, birds and other wildlife throughout the Gulf Coast region.

Evansville will host its annual Fourth of July celebration this weekend - details below

Evansville is all fired up about its annual Fourth of July Bash this weekend.

Here is a schedule of the events:

  • Saturday, July 3

All-Town Rummage Sale starts at 8 a.m. Pick up a listing at City Hall or check out the city’s website for a listing.

Faith Women Bake Sale/Lunch served at the Fire Hall from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Men’s Slow-Pitch Softball Tournament.

Portraits of Home II – a display of homeless veterans photographs at the Evansville Arts Coalition with the American Legion Auxiliary Post 188 serving coffee and cookies from 1 to 4 p.m.

Blue Dogs baseball game starting at 6 p.m. at the baseball field.

Legion Auxiliary Post 188 will be serving hotdogs, chips and ice cream at the Community Center at 6 p.m.

Legion Post 188 Bingo Blowout at the school west gym, starting at 7 p.m. Kids can play also if accompanied by an adult.

Firemen’s street dance – Nasty Habit will play from 8 p.m. to 1 a.m. The cover charge is $8.

  • Sunday, July 4

Co-ed sand volleyball tournament starts at 9 a.m.

Community church service at 9:30 a.m. at the school west gym provided by Calvary Covenant Church.

Two-person bean bag tournament starts at 10 a.m.

Faith lunch starts at 11 a.m. and is sponsored by Faith Women.

Parade registration begins at the Faith Church parking lot starting at noon.

Kiddie parade line-up begins at 12:45 p.m. by Evansville Care Campus. The parade route goes from Evansville Care Campus to City Hall.

Evansville Lions Club Grand Parade starts at 1:30 p.m. with the grand marshals – Harlan and Marlys Englund.

Activities in the park will take place throughout the day, including various food vendors, dunk tank, petting zoo, pony rides, Giggles the Clown, face painting, Bounce House, money/candy/toys in straw, carnival games and egg toss.

Pork chop feed served from 5 to 8 p.m. at the Community Center.

Blue Dogs baseball game at 7:30 p.m. at the baseball field.

“Homegrown Music” starts at 8 p.m. in the west gym, presented by the Evansville Arts Coalition. Open mic music and the public is welcome to participate.

Button and Lions Club raffle drawing will take place at 8:45 p.m. in the west gym

Free watermelon feed starts at 9 p.m. at the Evansville Community Center.

Fireworks display will take place at dusk.

Congressman Collin Peterson is pleased that Wall Street Reform has finally passed

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson today commended the House of Representatives for passing the conference report on the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act (H.R. 4173).

“I am pleased the conference report contains many of the provisions the House Agriculture Committee endorsed in three different bills on these topics,” Chairman Peterson said. “This bill will mitigate the outrageous price spikes in commodity markets that we first saw two years ago, bring greater transparency to the derivatives market through mandatory clearing and ensure that end users can continue using derivatives to hedge risk.”

Chairman Peterson added, “This comprehensive legislation represents a middle ground between the House and Senate products. And, while no one got everything they wanted in this bill, I think we got a bill that will help prevent another crisis in the financial markets like the one we experienced in 2008,”

The House Agriculture Committee played a key role in developing the financial reform legislation; particularly provisions that address increased volatility and speculation in the derivatives markets and that strengthen oversight and increase transparency in the markets for futures, options and over-the-counter products and swaps.

The Senate must now vote to approve the conference report before it is sent to President Obama for his signature.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Republicans hold Freedom Rally in Fergus Falls today - Tom Emmer highlights a long list of top party officials running for statewide office

A video clip that I recorded of Tom Emmer's speech can be viewed at the Herman-Hoffman Tribune's website Videos page =

Tom Emmer speaking in Fergus Falls on July 1.

One other noteworthy politician in attendance was Lee Byberg, a Willmar-area businessman who is also the Republican-endorsed candidate to run against Seventh Congressional District Representative Collin Peterson.

9:00pm - I'm uploading Byberg's speech right now to the Tribune's video page.

More videos and photos will be available to look at tonight.