Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

School athletes reminded of fees and forms

Wed, 08/01/2012 - 5:08am

Parents of high school athletes and athletes themselves are reminded to take care of participation fees and eligibility forms before the season starts on Monday Aug. 13.

ISD166 Athletic Director Pam Taylor will be in the athletic office Monday Aug. 6 thru Thursday Aug. 9 from 4 to 6 p.m. to collect forms and fees and answer any questions about participating in Cook County Athletics.

Lodging tax revenues for June rebound

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 11:31am

Lodging tax revenues for the sixth month of 2012 were up compared to June 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 3.8 percent across the board for reporting tourism organizations.

Lutsen-Tofte revenues were up 1.4 percent from last June. Grand Marais revenues were up 11.8 percent from this time last year. The Gunflint Trail revenues for June were up 6.2 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 June of this year and last year are included in the monthly accounting.

Kadunce Creek Beach advisory issued

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 11:07am

A “Water Contact Not Recommended” advisory has been issued by the Minnesota Department of Health today for Kadunce Creek Beach. 

The beach is located at Kadunce Creek picnic area north of Grand Marais, on the north-west side of the Kadunce Creek mouth.

Elevated E. coli bacteria levels identified from samples collected yesterday indicate the possible presence of fecal contamination.  The beach is scheduled to be re-sampled later today.

Another elevated E. coli advisory has been issued for Agate Bay Beach in Two Harbors. It too is scheduled to be re-sampled today. 

Pond scum found in warming waters of Lake Superior

Tue, 07/31/2012 - 10:01am

SUPERIOR, Wis. (AP) — State park officials have found pond scum on the waters of Lake Superior, a discovery that might be linked to warmer water temperatures.

A Wisconsin Public Radio report says about two miles of coastline from Cornucopia to the Apostle Islands sea caves had a light coating of blue-green algae.

Apostle Islands resource manager Julie Van Stappen says it's unusual to have any kind of algae blooms in the lake.
She says the water temperature is 67 degrees, whereas it's usually about 58 degrees. Lake Superior is experiencing some of its hottest water temperatures in the past 30 years. Some parts of the big lake are reporting 20 degrees above average as we enter August.

Meteorologist Mike Stewart  said "It has been the warmest summer in 142 years of data gathering in the Duluth area.”
Nancy Larson is with the state Department of Natural Resources. She says the scum is a result of several factors, including warmer temperatures and flooding that carried nutrients into the lake.

Much of the algae has broken up, but Larson says it's possible it could return.

Banadad Trail Association fundraising for trail improvements

Mon, 07/30/2012 - 11:10pm

The Banadad Trail Association is undertaking a fundraising 
campaign to construct a new section of the trail and enlarge the 
parking on the trail’s west end.  The project will reconstruct the 
west end of the Banadad Trail, which crosses private property, secure 
a permanent easement, and ensure continued access for skiers from the 
west end.
“We are so excited to undertake this project,” said BTA president 
Linda Bosma, who has been skiing the Banadad Trail for 18 years.  “A 
change in property ownership creates the opportunity for us to improve
the west end of the trail, which is popular with day skiers who want 
to ski in and out, as well as the through skiers, who ski the entire 
29 kilometers of the trail in one day.”

The project cost is $11,340.  The BTA has been awarded a Trail 
Connections Grant from the Department of Natural Resources that will 
cover $7,800 and the association must raise the balance. “This is the 
most ambitious project we have undertaken as a new organization,” said 
John Bottger, BTA vice president and Gunflint Trail resident.  “We’ve 
secured grants and donations to cover maintenance and grooming costs 
of the trail since 2009, when we formed, and last year we rebuilt a 
remotely located bridge within the BWCA.  So while this new project is 
significant, we feel up to this challenge.  But we’ll definitely need 
the support of our members, skiers, and other supporters of the trail.”
Bosma noted that people have already begun donating, even though the 
campaign is just getting off the ground, with over $1,000 in donations 

Registration open for Fisherman's Picnic Slow PItch Softball Tournament

Mon, 07/30/2012 - 12:01pm

Registration is now open for the Grand Marais Lions Fisherman’s Picnic Slow Pitch Softball Tournament on Saturday and Sunday, August 4 – 5.
Lion Bob Spry is accepting registrations at or by phone at (218) 387-2411. Entry fee is $120 for a team.
There is a maximum of 28 teams and each team is guaranteed three games. Games start at 8 a.m. on Saturday at Cook County High School, at the Rec. Park and at Pappy Wright Field. Finals are Sunday at 4 p.m. at the Rec. Park field.
Sign up now for this exciting traditional Fisherman’s Picnic event!