Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

Industrial Arts Expansion delayed until 2015

Thu, 08/28/2014 - 11:56am

At the August 7 school board meeting, the school board learned that the industrial arts remodeling project is going to be delayed. The architect is concerned that bids this late in the building season will be artificially high and more competitive bids could be obtained by waiting until January. It is now hoped that building will begin by next summer and possibly before the end of the next school year.

Students who are enrolled in industrial arts classes will spend some time on computers and will have enough other temporary working space. There will be some new wood working equipment although the anticipated metal working equipment would be too large for the current space. Principal Adam Nelson will begin to order some of the equipment.

The school board participated in a walking tour of the area to be remodeled at the school board meeting on August 21, 2014.

City approves signs on "Safe Routes to School" streets

Thu, 08/28/2014 - 11:54am

Maren Webb, coordinator of the Moving Matters program, led off the Grand Marais City Council proceedings on Wednesday, August 13 with a request to put yard signs in the city boulevards and rights of way near the school campus or along those streets designated as “Safe Routes to School.” The signs are approximately the size and shape of common political signs, and bear the message “Slow Down & Smile…Kids on the Move.” They will be in place for about a month, beginning with the start of the school year, Webb said.

In particular, the signs will be placed along First Avenue West, County Road 7 and other streets with high pedestrian and bicycle traffic going to and from the schools. Webb said the initiative with Moving Matters and other local groups is designed as a community service project to promote safety and raise awareness of children and other pedestrians.

There was some discussion about the legality of allowing the signs to be placed outside of the guidelines established by state ordinance or other statute that apply to political signs. However, City Administrator Mike Roth said the city can grant exemptions for groups or organizations, and it was up to council to decide what was appropriate. “It’s not the same as with political signs,” Roth said.

Council granted Moving Matters’ request to place the signs on city property where needed, and Webb said she will contact those property owners along the routes where placement is desired on private property. “We’re not going to just put them up,” Webb said. “We will talk with the homeowners.”

Old Fashioned Pie and Ice Cream Social at Chik-Wauk on August 31

Thu, 08/28/2014 - 8:06am

Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center will host an Old Fashioned Pie and Ice Cream Social on the museum front porch and grounds over Labor Day weekend on Sunday, August 31, from 11am - 4pm.  WTIP volunteer Tracy Benson spoke with Ada Igoe, the site manager at Chik-Wauk on North Shore Morning.  

Chik-Wauk is located 53 miles up the Gunflint Trail, northwest of Grand Marais.  They’re open 7 days a week and offer a variety of free programs and activities.
More information is available from Ada Igoe, museum manager, at 388-9915, or, and on the website,
Old Fashioned Pie and Ice Cream Social
Sunday, August 31
11:00am - 04:00pm

Listen to the Story

1st and 2nd Thrift Store helps local nonprofits

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 3:49pm

The 1st and 2nd Thrift Store in Grand Marais welcomes donations, volunteers and shoppers!  WTIP volunteer Marnie McMillan spoke with Lois Johnson of the store on North Shore Morning. 

If you would like to help a community nonprofit by working at the First & Second Thrift Store or at the donation center, call 218-387-1826.
If you would like to donate items to sell at the thrift store, donations are accepted at the back door behind the Thrift Store on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

Listen to the Story

"No water contact" advisory lifted at Grand Marais campground beach

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 2:44pm

The Minnesota Department of Health has removed its “no water contact” advisory for the Grand Marais Campground A water sample collected August 27 showed that if the bacterial levels have returned to acceptable levels.

Beach monitoring is conducted at the following beaches in Cook County:  Chicago Bay boat launch in Hovland; Paradise Beach, Kadunce Creek, Durfee Creek in Colvill; Old Shore Road, Harbor Park in Grand Marais, Recreation Park campground in Grand Marais, Cutface Creek Wayside Rest; Temperance River State Park, Schroeder Town Park and Sugarloaf Cove Beach in Schroeder. At press time, all had “water contact acceptable” ratings.

A number of factors, such as dog, geese and other wildlife feces, dirty diapers, failing septic systems and sewer line breaks and overflows, can contribute to higher levels of illness-causing bacteria.

The Minnesota Lake Superior Beach Monitoring Program offers the following tips to minimize risks associated with potential water contamination. Its website recommends waiting 24 hours before going swimming after a heavy rainfall and showering after swimming or recreating at the beach. It also advises that beach goers do not swallow water and that they try to keep face and head out of the water. If possible, the website says to wear earplugs and goggles. Finally, it advises people with weakened immune systems not to swim.

Anyone who becomes ill after contacting beach water is asked to contact the Minnesota Department of Health at (877) 366-3455.

To find the latest results of beach monitoring for North Shore beaches, visit .

County approves temporary road for airport runway extension project

Wed, 08/27/2014 - 2:43pm

As the Cook County Airport runway extension gets closer to realty, Cook County Highway Engineer David Betts brought a request to the county board on August 19 to construct an access road from a gravel pit near the airport to the Cook County Airport to be built and used by Northland Constructors during the  project.

The highway department recommend approval with the condition that Northland Constructors obtain all necessary permits, prepare a stormwater pollution prevention plan (SWPPP), stake the route and review it with the highway department, construct a lockable gate and compensate the county. Betts said compensation would likely be in the form of gravel.

Betts and Assistant County Engineer Sam Muntean recommended approving the request. Muntean said it benefits the airport because trucks will not have to drive across the existing runway. Commissioners approved the request, with Commissioner Heidi Doo-Kirk noting that it also meant “less wear and tear” on the ears of the neighboring property owners.