Around Cook County
Lodging tax revenues for the first month of 2013 were up compared to January of last year county-wide. According to the latest report from the Cook County Auditor-Treasurer’s office, the year-to-date totals were up 5.4 percent across the board for reporting tourism organizations.
Lutsen-Tofte revenues were up 12.7 percent from last January and it was the best January since 2009. Grand Marais revenues were up 20.5 percent from this time last year. The Gunflint Trail revenues for January were up 6.5 percent.
The Auditor’s office emphasizes that not all businesses report taxes at the same time each year and revenues are an “apples-to-apples comparison.” That means only businesses which reported lodging tax revenues both in January of this year and last year are included in the monthly accounting.
In a barn burner at Hermantown, the Cook County girls basketball team rose to the occasion and beat the Floodwood Polar Bears 56 to 50 in overtime.
At the top of her game, Theresa Morrin sunk 24 buckets including a 3-pointer. Breana Peterson had 15 and Leah Utities scored 7 including a 3-pointer.
Lily Gruber-Schulz and Kaitlyn Linnell each scored 5.
In the second game, Silver Bay went down to McGregor 77 to 23. Alicia Nopola led the Mariners with 16 points.
The Viking girls now move into the quarterfinals on Saturday at Hibbing for an 8pm match-up against McGregor. WTIP will be there for the broadcast.
Only 11 people battled the sub zero weather and wind to attend the 2013 Republican Party’s Cook County Convention held February 19 at 7 p.m. at the Cook County Senior Center, but they were a determined lot, dedicated to bringing their party’s principles back to prominence in the county.
Garry Gamble chaired the event, but said this would his last time leading the party. He also said his co-chair, Mark Breitsprecher, wasn’t interested in continuing his position, either.
“I don’t want a perception of a conflict of interest,” said Gamble, who was elected to the county board as a county commissioner last fall.
“Our culture is so polarized that I would be more unencumbered by giving up my role as co-chair. But stepping down doesn’t mean stepping away from what I believe in,” Gamble said.
As for Breitsprecher, he is busy with his ancient coin business and looking to move from Cook County if the opportunity presents itself.
Just who will serve in the role as chair or will co-chair the party is up for grabs, because no one at the meeting was ready to assume that mantle of leadership. Gamble said he would investigate party rules to see how long the local BPOU (Basic Political Operating Unit) had before calling a special meeting and electing someone to chair the party.
As for the other positions, Mary Petz was reelected secretary and Jim Hall treasurer. Hall has worked for the party since the mid 1950s and he was commended for his service.
With the party somewhat in tatters due to the recent presidential election, Gamble said its members must remain true to their roots.
Join the North Shore Music Association March 2 for a shared bill of two exceptionally talented Minnesota musicians, Barbara Jean and Chastity Brown.
Calling the North Shore home until recently, Barbara Jean has developed her craft through constant live performance and has recently struck out on her own to take her debut record, The Great Escape to fans all across the Midwest. Classically trained on the viola at the U of M, and self-taught at the banjo, her voice and songs transcend tradition with a mix of Americana, Appalachia, and an insightful vulnerability in lyric and delivery. Performing solo, as a duo, or in larger ensembles, she brings a grace and comfort to the stage at once disarming and captivating, gaining her a burgeoning audience and high praise from her peers.
Throw all the genres and hyphenates together you want to describe Chastity Brown— gospel, roots and soul, jazz, blues and country – they are all right, and also not enough to describe this talented musician. She channels songs that are borne deep in the American bone, the hunger, desperation and confidence that runs through our times. Coming from Tennessee to Minnesota, she now tours the country and has recently released her fourth full-length record, Back-Road Highways.
Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. concert at the Arrowhead Center for the Arts are $10 adults, $5 ages 18 and under. Tickets are available in advance at www.tix.com, or night of performance at the door. General seating. Lobby opens at 6:30 pm.
WEST ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — The Minnesota Pollution Control agency will host an open house Thursday to provide an update on its long-term study on whether the state should revise its water quality standard for protecting wild rice beds.
The MPCA says the open house will include an overview of the study followed by a poster session. Posters will focus on current and future research projects, the standards setting process and study timeline, and about the current sulfate limits to protect wild rice.
Mining interests and wastewater treatment plant operators have sought to loosen the sulfate standard.
Those attending the session will have an opportunity to provide input on the work.
“Seen Through Native Eyes: A Celebration of Native Art” is being brought to the community by a collaboration between the Art Colony and Spirit of the Wilderness Episcopal Church. Mary Ellen Ashcroft, vicar of Spirit of the Wilderness explains the purpose of the exhibit. She said, “We hope to delve deeply and begin to see (at least realize what we can’t see) through native eyes, both to broaden our artistic vision, but also to deepen our understanding. In this year of the 150th anniversary of the massacre of 38 Dakota warriors, we felt it appropriate to stop and consider from a different perspective.”
In addition to a Friday night reception for featured artists Robert Two Bulls and Johnson Loud, the event now includes a screening of the movie 38+2, which commemorates the anniversary of the 38 Dakota people hanged 150 years ago—and the story of the modern day recreation of their tragic journey. The film will be shown at Cook County Higher Education at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, February 28. There will be discussion with Two Bulls and Loud afterwards and refreshments will be served.
In addition to the film and exhibit at the Art Colony, Two Bulls (Pine Ridge Oglala Lakota) and Loud (Red Lake, Chippewa) will conduct workshops on March 2, from 9 – 4 p.m. at the Grand Marais Art Colony. The workshops are open to ages 10 and up. From 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. there will be a presentation and discussion of Native Art. From 12 4 p.m. the artists will demonstrate their art form. Two Bulls will give an interactive presentation on oil painting. Loud will demonstrate the creation of his pottery.
The cost of the workshops is $50, with an additional $15 for supplies for the Robert Two Bulls class. Scholarships are available. For more information or to register, contact the Grand Marais Art Colony at (218) 387-2737.