Around Cook County
Welcome to Shelby Gonzalez who has been named the new Cook
County Visitors Bureau (CCVB) marketing manager.
In collaboration with director Sally Nankivell and the CCVB’s
marketing and PR team at Marketing that Matters, Gonzalez will be
responsible for managing, carrying out and measuring the CCVB’s
marketing and PR efforts.
Before joining the CCVB, Gonzalez managed editorial planning and
production at Grand Marais-based Northern Wilds Media. She lived in
Duluth but traveled to Grand Marais often. She also worked as a
freelance writer specializing in Minnesota travel and outdoor
adventure. She has also worked in communications management roles at
two California-based nonprofit organizations and as a rock climbing
instructor for the University of Minnesota, Duluth’s Vertical
“We are delighted that Shelby has joined our team,” said Nankivell.
“She joins us at a very exciting time in the growth of the Cook
County Visitors Bureau, and I am confident that she will be an
excellent addition to our team and an engaged member of our
Gonzalez grew up in Minneapolis, the oldest of six children. She got
to know Grand Marais and the Gunflint Trail as a teenager through
summers at YMCA Camp Menogyn. She studied at the University of
Minnesota, Twin Cities and Duluth campuses. She designed her own major
in outdoor communications.
In June 2009, about 50 Cook County outdoor enthusiasts rode their all-
terrain vehicles (ATVs) into the Guinness Book of World Records. The
folks on the four-wheelers were part of the All-Terrain Vehicle
Association of Minnesota (ATVAM)’s successful attempt to break a
Guinness World Record for the World's Longest ATV Parade. Those 50
people were part of a record-breaking parade of 1,632 ATVs in the city
of Silver Bay.
The title was short-lived, however. In the fall of 2010, the state of
Utah broke the Minnesota record with 1,870 ATVs. So ATVAM plans to
take back the world record and northland ATVers are once again invited
to take part. ATVAM hopes to have more than 2,000 ATVs in the parade.
There will also be fun riding opportunities on the fabulous Silver Bay
Moose Walk ATV trail system and other ATV-related activities. Sponsors
of the ATV Parade will be hosting booths on-site for participants to
see new products. Parade organizers will also be holding a contest for
the most creatively decorated ATV. After the parade concludes Zup’s
Foods will be hosting a buffet at the Silver Bay Union Hall.
Registration and the staging area for the parade will be one half mile
north of Outer Drive and Highway 61 in the field in front of AmericInn
Motel. There will be signs showing participants where to go. There
will be ample parking on the streets and surrounding areas. The parade
route will be a designated ATV trail for the day, so children can ride
in the parade as long they meet all MN safety requirements. Side-by-
side ATV's and three-wheelers are welcome to come, but will not be
The Cook County Booster Club supports student athletes throughout the year and several times each year hosts an athletic banquet to recognize athletes and coaches. The sports banquet on Sunday, May 6 will be an extra-special event with a well-known sports figure as speaker—Shannon Miller, coach of championship-winning UMD Women’s Hockey.
The dinner for athletes and families will be at 5 p.m. at St. John’s Catholic Church. After dinner, the public is invited to the banquet to hear Coach Miller speak at 6 p.m.
Booster Club Member Cindy Crawford was delighted to announce the special guest speaker. “The speech is open to anyone interested in athletics,” she said. “Especially all the community members who helped out in the concession stand to support the Booster Club.”
Shannon Miller has led the UMD Bulldogs to nine NCAA playoff appearances and five NCAA Championship titles. No other hockey program in the country has won five titles, let alone three consecutive NCAA trophies.
Not only has Miller enjoyed incredible success with the Bulldogs, but she also had tremendous success coaching on the international stage with Team Canada. Miller coached Canada to a silver medal at the 1998 Winter Olympics and stood out as the first and youngest female head coach of any Olympic hockey team.
In addition to her duties at UMD, Miller chairs the Ethics Committee for US women’s college hockey, and also serves on the NCAA Division 1 Championships Committee. She is one of only two coaches in the entire country on the committee.
Cook County Commissioners agreed to pay Boreal.TV $6,000 to videotape all county board meetings that take place in the commissioner’s room for one year. The meetings will be filmed in their entirety and available online within 24 hours. Boreal.TV will make DVDs available to the public library, and offer a format that can be used on PAC-13, the local cable TV station.
Boreal.TV was started with funding from grants through Blandin Foundation’s Minnesota Intelligent Rural Communities initiative to promote the development of broadband applications. A new 501c3 nonprofit has been created in Cook County called Boreal.TV.
Boreal.TV is working toward build a sustainable funding model and would like community members or businesses interested in sponsoring local events to email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 218-387-9471.
The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) has
announced its new strategies to fight the spread of aquatic invasive
species across the state.
The efforts take a two-pronged approach: to increase inspections and
decontamination of boats at and near water bodies, especially those
infested with aquatic invasive species; and to increase awareness that
the public must do its part not to spread invasive species.
"The DNR cannot be at every boat ramp this summer, making sure
boaters, anglers and other water users are not bringing zebra mussels
and other invasive species to public waters," said DNR Commissioner
Tom Landwehr. "Our message is these waters belong to everyone - so
everyone needs to be responsible for not moving these invaders."__
In 2012, the DNR will institute new invasive species check stations,
hire more watercraft inspectors, deploy more decontamination units and
increase its public awareness efforts - all to stop the spread of
zebra mussels and other aquatic invaders.
In addition, a new law passed in 2011 (Minnesota Statues 86B.508) that
requires a watercraft owner or operator to obtain and attach an
aquatic invasive species rules decal to all types of watercraft prior
to launching on, entering into, or operating on any waters of the
state. The decals are available at DNR offices, Deputy Registrar
offices where licenses are sold, and large sport shops, as well from
DNR Watercraft Inspectors and conservation officers. They will be
included in the envelopes of new and renewal watercraft licenses
mailed from DNR. They are free.
There is no penalty in effect at this time, but a warning can be
The 5th annual Gunflint Green Up event will be held on Saturday, May 5 on the Chik-Wauk Museum and Nature Center grounds. Volunteers will focus on planting and releasing trees along the newly re-established Gneiss Lake Trail.
The first Gunflint Green Up event was in the spring of 2008, when volunteers and officials from the U.S. Forest Service gathered to replant the area of the Gunflint that had been burned by the Ham Lake Wildfire in 2007. Over the years, the event has been modified to include releasing the previously planted trees—cutting away undergrowth to let the sunshine in and allow the young trees to grow tall.
This year’s event will help re-establish the Gneiss Lake Trail, a 1.5-mile trail that once ran from Chik-Wauk Bay to the Granite River. The trail was closed after the July 4, 1999 blowdown storm because of all the fallen trees. The Ham Lake Wildfire burned through the Gneiss Lake Trail area and burned many of the fallen trees. This winter, the U.S. Forest Service gave the Gunflint Trail Historical Society permission to clear and maintain the trail to Blueberry Hill, about half a mile. Green Up participants will plant and release seedlings along the trail.
Volunteers have different options this year. Gunflint Lodge is the primary sponsor of the 2012 Gunflint Green Up and the lodge offers accommodation and meals or just meals. To look at Gunflint Lodge’s options, call (800) 328-3325 or visit www.gunflint.com. Information on Gunflint Green Up is on the home page.
Participants may also attend at no charge and do not need to pre-register. Just gather at Chik-Wauk Museum at 28 Moose Pond Drive at 10 a.m. on May 5 to be assigned a task. Volunteers not registering through Gunflint Lodge are asked to bring their own water, lunch and equipment such as shovels, planting bars, pruners, nippers and handsaws. Organizers add, “No chain saws please.”