Around Cook County

News and other information from Cook County

Mushers prepare for upcoming Beargrease race

Wed, 01/27/2016 - 7:53am

There are many factors that go into a successful run in the John Beargrease Sled Dog Race. WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs talks with area mushers about how they stay focused and what they are looking forward to in this year’s race. 


1st & 2nd invites community to celebration of payouts to nonprofits

Tue, 01/26/2016 - 3:57pm

The little second-hand store in the Cobblestone Building off Highway 61 in Grand Marais isn’t just a fun place to bargain hunt. Since 2007, 1st and 2nd Thrift Store has also been raising money for nonprofit organizations in Cook County.

In 2015, the store raised an impressive $73,084, which will be distributed at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, January 27 at the Cook County Senior Center. All Thrift Store volunteers and representatives of the benefitting organizations are invited to the payout party.

1st and 2nd Thrift Store is a volunteer-run organization. The volunteers accept donations, sort and clean them, and sell them in the store at 211 Highway 61 in Grand Marais. Each volunteer designates a Cook County non-profit organization when he or she signs in to work. Volunteers are repaid for their time at the end of each year with a donation to the non-profit organization they have designated. This year 78 volunteers have worked 4,568 hours in support of 50 nonprofit organizations.

The store sells clothing and accessories, household goods, linens, and a wide variety of other goods. Often unusual and valuable items can be found there, such as original art or a skunk fur coat with a note attached saying, “Do not get wet!” Some shoppers stop by regularly to see what new items are available.

1st and 2nd winter manager Gerry Grant issued the invitation to the January 27 event saying, “1st and 2nd Thrift Store is successful because everyone wins: the volunteers who turn their time into financial contributions; the organizations who receive their support; the donors who know their unneeded items will benefit Cook County; and the shoppers who buy quality items at reasonable prices.”

Anyone interested in volunteering at 1st and 2nd Thrift Store should contact the thrift store at (218) 387-1826.


One Act Play "Foiled by the Innocent Maid" to be performed January 28

Tue, 01/26/2016 - 3:54pm

The Cook County High School One Act is well into rehearsal. The play this year is a melodrama called Foiled by the Innocent Maid. The play is directed by Sue Hennessy with the cast of Erica Marxen, Andy Kern, Finn Garry, Linnea Henrikson, Amelia Roth and Lucy Callender.

The play will be presented to the community on January 28 at 7 p.m. Come boo the villain and cheer for the hero and heroine. The play goes to competition against seven other schools on January 30 in Two Harbors.

Following the high school performance there will be a meeting for anyone interested in participating in the 2016 Summer Repertory. One musical and one comedy will be selected based on interest at this meeting. One possibility for the musical is Into The Woods by Stephan Sondheim. This would require a large cast of both men and women with experience singing as well as a host of musicians! Can we do it? Are you willing? Rehearsals would begin in March. Performances would be Mid-July – Mid August. 

Got questions? Contact the Grand Marais Playhouse at 218-387-1284 or email


This local news is provided by the Cook County News-Herald. Visit the community newspaper at

Sheriff talks ATVs and Beargrease road safety

Tue, 01/26/2016 - 10:20am

The yearly ATV road incident report was presented to the county board this week. WTIP’s Jay Andersen spoke with Cook County Sheriff Pat Eliasen about ATV complaints and caution on the back roads during the Beargrease.


10 questions with Lily Gruber-Schulz

Tue, 01/26/2016 - 8:35am

Earlier this month, Cook County Viking basketball player Lily Gruber-Schulz topped the 1,000-point milestone for her high-school career. WTIP’s Joe Friedrichs caught up with her recently to talk about the achievement and her athletic career with the Vikings. 


Arrowhead Transit seeks customer feedback on Duluth trips

Mon, 01/25/2016 - 12:05pm

Arrowhead Transit is proposing to start low-fare weekly round trips to Duluth beginning in February, regardless of how many passengers it has.

This service would replace the existing twice-monthly Duluth trips that only go if at least five riders have made reservations.
In Duluth, the new weekly service will make a stop at the new Duluth Transportation Center (DTC) where riders can connect with Duluth Transit Authority buses. The DTC also Includes a Jefferson Lines bus station, and the Skyline Shuttle to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Airport departs from the DECC, across I-35 via skyway.

It is hoped that the new weekly service will not only be more convenient for residents along the North Shore, but also that it might be a transportation option for tourists and other visitors, for students coming and going to school, for workers who need to get back and forth to Duluth, and for people who have errands, shopping and medical appointments in Duluth.

In order to gauge demand for this proposed new service and to ensure it is structured to best meet the needs of Cook County residents, Arrowhead Transit requests answers to these questions:

What day of the week would be the best day for Arrowhead Transit to schedule this new service? The trips will no longer bounce around. If Tuesday is chosen, the bus will run on Tuesday of every week.

What time of day would be the best start time from Grand Marais?

What time of day would be the optimum time to leave Duluth for the return trip up the shore?

Arrowhead Transit is eager to hear from resort owners and others in the tourism industry. Transit officials very much want to know how this new weekly service might be structured to provide a reasonable low-cost transportation alternative for tourists coming to Cook County and for the resort workers who help take care of those tourists.