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White Powdery Substance Found in Stearns County Mail

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08/23/2017 - 12:30 PM

The United States Postal Inspection Service is investigating a white powdery substance that was found in mail sent to the Stearns County Courts Tuesday morning.

Stearns County Sheriff Don Gudmundson says that a Seventh District Judicial staff reported finding a white powdery substance while opening the daily mail just before 11 a.m. 

The sheriff's office had the United States Postal Inspection Service test the substance. The inspection services said that the sample is believed to be corn starch and contains no biologic or toxic substances. 

Further testing of the substance will be done by the Minnesota Department of Health. 

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Investigation will be looking into potential violations could deal with real and simulated weapons of mass destruction.

St. Cloud Man Sentenced to Prison for Racially Motivated Attack.

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08/22/2017 - 3:30 PM

ELK RIVER, Minn. (AP) - A Minnesota man has been sentenced to two years in prison for a hatchet attack on a black man.

Fifty-one-year-old Daniel Volkers of St. Cloud was sentenced Monday after pleading guilty to second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon motivated by racial bias. Other charges were dismissed as part of a plea agreement.

authorities say Volkers confronted a black man who was sitting in a car in a St. Cloud parking lot in March. The 45-year-old man told police he opened his car door and asked Volkers what he wanted. Volkers was accused of threatening the man and swinging a hatchet at him twice. The man was able to close and lock his car door without being hit.

Police found Volkers hiding in a pantry in his apartment and recovered a hatchet.

New Human Services Administrator Named For Stearns County

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08/22/2017 - 1:55 PM

New Human Services Administrator Named For Stearns County
Melissa Huberty

A new Human Services Administrator for Stearns County has been named.

The Board of Commissioners appointed Melissa Huberty to the role at their meeting Tuesday. Huberty has served in Human Services field for 22 years which includes being the Manager for Ramsey County Community Human Services as well as social work and public heath experience in Hennepin County.

Huberty will begin work on August 28 with a salary of just over $134,000.

Call for Art! Juried Alumni Art Exhibition Coming to St. Cloud State University

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08/22/2017 - 1:30 PM

Call for Art! Juried Alumni Art Exhibition Coming to St. Cloud State University

St. Cloud State University Alumni are welcome to submit pieces of art for the juried art exhibition.

The Collage of Liberal Arts' Experiential Learning & Outreach Department says the Alumni Art Exhibition will be taking submissions from alumni until September 2, artists may submit as many as three works at cost of $35 per entry.

Be sure to check out the exhibit from October 1- 31, at the Atwood Gallery in Atwood Memorial Center.

Submission information can be found here.  

American Red Cross Teams Up With Sports Clips To Get More Blood Donors

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08/22/2017 - 10:20 AM

American Red Cross Teams Up With Sports Clips To Get More Blood Donors

The American Red Cross and Sports Clips are teaming up to try and overcome a shortage of blood donations across the nation.

Spokeswoman for the Red Cross Sue Thesenga says that anyone who donates blood between September 1st through the 30th will receive a free haircut coupon via email. This coupon will be valid through Nov. 11 of this year.

There are many opportunities to donate to earn the free cut as St. Cloud, Big Lake, Albany, Buffalo, Howard Lake, Mora, New London, Willmar, Hutchinson, Litchfieldand many more. For hours and appointment times call 1-800-RED-CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

You can also set up and appointment or find other donation centers by visiting redcrossblood.org or download the Red Cross Blood Donor App.

Metro Bus Changes SCSU Services

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08/22/2017 - 1:30 AM

Metro Bus Changes SCSU Services

St Cloud State University employees can no longer get free Metro Bus rides off campus.

Metro bus says after discussions with the university some changes were made to their contract. Two major changes are faculty and staff can only ride free on-campus, on routes 91, 92, and 93. And they have discontinued route 95, which was a late night bus that ran from downtown to the neighborhoods around campus.

Other changes were to the schedules of routes 92 and 93. Route 92 will now only run on weekdays from K-lot to the wick science building. And route 93 will now run every day until 11 p.m. making stops at the Miller Center, Atwood, and K-lot.

Trying to See the Solar Eclipse

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08/21/2017 - 12:00 PM

Trying to See the Solar Eclipse

It’s fun without the sun at St. Cloud State University as students and faculty are trying to celebrate what people are calling the great American eclipse.

University communications specialist Jeff Wood said moon will pass between the sun and St. Cloud at 1:06 this afternoon covering nearly 80% of the sun. But with the cloud front that rolled in this morning seeing the eclipse in its full glory isn’t looking too hopeful.

"even if it is overcast that we are hoping that there is enough sun peeking through the cloud pack that with eclipse glasses we could still see the eclipse happening, and maybe we will get a break in the clouds," Wood said.

Starting at 12:30, Rain or shine SCSU’s Mascot Blizzard will be handing out eclipse glasses on the Atwood mall.

Road Closure in North St. Cloud

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08/21/2017 - 11:30 AM

Road Closure in North St. Cloud

This week a road closure will be in effect in North St. Cloud for city maintenance.

The St. Cloud City Engineer’s Office says 36th Avenue North between 2nd Street and 3rd Street will be closed due to utility work.

The closure will span the road and be in effect on Thursday to provide utility crews a safe work space.

Weekend Crashes in Central Minnesota Send Three People To The Hospital

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08/21/2017 - 10:15 AM

Weekend Crashes in Central Minnesota Send Three People To The Hospital

Multiple car crashes took place over the weekend in Central Minnesota with two people hospitalized.

In Monticello, a Chrysler minivan rear-ended a Dodge minivan on Highway 25 near the exit onto Interstate-94 on Saturday. In a separate accident on Sunday in Monticello, a SUV was unable to stop and hit a pick-up truck in front of it. In both accidents everyone involved was wearing their seatbelts and no one needed to be hospitalized.

In Richmond on Friday, a sedan was traveling west on Highway 23 and hit a 9-year-old child on a bicycle traveling north while the traffic light was green for east and west traffic. The child was taken to the St. Cloud Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Finally, on Sunday in Litchfield, a driver in a pick-up truck was travelling west on Highway 12 followed by a sedan. The truck attempted a U-turn and the sedan driver hit the driver's side of the truck. Both people were taken to Meeker Memorial Hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

Level Three Sex Offender Moving to East St. Cloud

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08/21/2017 - 9:30 AM

Level Three Sex Offender Moving to East St. Cloud
James Ross Forbes II

St. Cloud Police are notifying residents that a level three sex offender will be moving into the east side of St. Cloud.

St. Cloud Police Assistant Chief Jeff Oxton says 30-year-old James Ross Forbes II will be moving into the 100 block of East Saint Germain Street. Forbes has a history of sexual contact with minors, one a seven-year-old boy and another a two-year-old girl.

There will be a community notification meeting at 6 p.m. on Monday, August 28 at the St. Cloud Police Department headquarters in their training room C.

For more information on Forbes, visit this LINK on the Minnesota Department of Corrections website. Residents can also contact the Community Crime Impact Team of St. Cloud at (320)-345-4148.

Three Arrested After Drug Bust In Northwest St. Cloud Thursday

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08/18/2017 - 1:00 PM

Three Arrested After Drug Bust In Northwest St. Cloud Thursday

The Central Minnesota Violent Offender Task Force raided a house where police thought they would find firearms and controlled substances.

Task Force Commander Steve Soyka says that they searched the house at 712 31st Avenue North in St. Cloud Thursday after getting a search warrant. Officers found about one ounce of marijuana and two handguns. 

Thirty-eight-year-old homeowner Luis Hernandez was in the house along with 25-year-old Andre Hemswoth, who has an active warrant for third degree criminal sexual conduct in Stearns County. Also, 21-year-old Tulane Hardaway of St. Cloud was arrested for a 1st degree aggravated robbery warrant from the Department of Corrections.

Hernandez was released while Hemsworth and Hardaway were both sent to Stearns County Jail.

Paynesville Homes Evacuated Early Friday After Semi Trailer Chemical Fire

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08/18/2017 - 11:00 AM

Paynesville Homes Evacuated Early Friday After Semi Trailer Chemical Fire

Residents in 70 to 100 homes in Paynesville had to be evacuated early Friday morning due to a chemical fire on a semi-trailer.

Stearns County Sheriff Don Gudmundson says they received a call shortly after midnight of a semi trailer on fire. The driver was safe and had unhooked his rig from the trailer, but he reported the trailer's cargo was various chemicals classified as oxidyzers.

The Paynesville Police Department found the trailer fully engulfed in flames and spewing toxic smoke. Law enforcement shut down Highway 23 and diverted traffic. Officials made a decision to create an exclusion zone of 1/2 mile surrounding the chemical fire.

Officers went door-to-door evacuating residents from County Road 85 and Highway 23 to Koronis Hills Golf course to Roseville Road. Residents went to Paynesville High School for several hours until they were allowed back home.

The investigation into the cause of the fire is still underway and part of the highway was still blocked Friday.

Mississippi River Bridge in Clearwater Is Now Open

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08/17/2017 - 3:30 PM

       

It's now easier to travel through Clearwater, Minnesota.

The Minnesota Department of Transportation opened the new Mississippi River Bridge to vehicles today. All lanes of Highway 24 are now switched onto the new Highway 24 bridge.

The new bridge spans the river and Wright County Road 7, or Mainstreet in Clearwater. The old bridge was 57-years-old and work to replace it began two years ago.

Minn-DOT says an average of 16,000 vehicles cross the bridge daily, with weekend recreational drivers from nearby Interstate 94 and Highway 10 creating a much higher volume of traffic.

The new bridge has wider lanes, shoulders and a pedestrian trail separated by a concrete barrier for safety.

The old bridge will be removed fully by 2018. Here's a link to the Highway 24 live webcam.

Stearns County Museum Bus Tour Gives Participants a Taste Of Gangster Life In Minnesota

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08/15/2017 - 2:20 PM

Stearns County Museum Bus Tour Gives Participants a Taste Of Gangster Life In Minnesota

On Thursday September 12, take a step back in time to the 1920’s and 30’s when gangsters migrated up to the “safe haven” known as Minnesota while prohibition was in full swing with the Stearns History Museum Fall Bus Tour.

According to Julianna O’Connell at the Stearns History Museum, the tour will stop at the Landmark Center and 11 Wells Distillery, both in St. Paul. The Landmark center is known for its red granite exterior and used to be the Federal Court House and Post Office for the Upper Midwest.

The tour goers will hear stories of infamous gangsters who may have walked those very same halls and about Stearns County bootleggers who were taken there by bus.

The tour includes lunch at New Bohemia Wurst & Bier Haus, which offers organically grown and locally made German sausage and sides.

The last stop will be the 11 Wells Distillery, with an exclusive tour where they have the new Minnesota 13 whiskey that was once a part of Stearns County’s History.

The tour will cost $85 for non-members and $70 for members . The bus leaves the museum at 9 a.m. and will return around 3:30 p.m. Contact Julianne at (320) 253-8424 or joconnel@Stearns-museum.org to register or for more information.

An Insider's Look at SCSU's Eastman Building Before Its Renovation This Fall

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05/31/2017 - 2:45 PM

Click for more photosPhoto by Andrew Erickson
Photo by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew EricksonPhoto by Andrew Erickson

KVSC's Assistant News Director Andrew Erickson got a chance to explore Eastman before the remodel begins to get some pictures in its historic halls. He says although Eastman is merely a destroyed storage space at this point, the history you can feel when you walk into the building is astounding.

Erickson says the first time he saw the building it reminded him of an old style basketball court and when he pointed it out to his friends they just gave him a funny look and said no way. He forgot about it because it was closed and there was no reason to try and explore when he couldn’t. That was until this bill passed and was a reminder of that old locked up building. This was the rekindling spark of curiosity.

The exploration started at the front door. Erickson says the old 1920s style lamp lights still sit outside and either side of the door, almost as if they could still light the way for basketball fans on a cold St. Cloud night in February.

When Erickson took a step into the natatorium, or the room with the pool, he was just in awe. Be from the incredible tile work in the trim, the fact that the pool sounded longer than it looked empty because it just felt so small or even looking at how small the whole room was with barely any bleacher space.

Even the locker rooms within Eastman had old stone bathroom stalls and a cage to hold and give out equipment. Other than in movies Erickson had never before seen one of these things. Some added fun there would be how the showers looked like they were straight out of a murder movie.

There is a really old style gymnasium that we just don't build anymore. It is filled with arch style architecture and that is something technology has surpassed. The windows even had this arch style and the rebuild isn't supposed to affect these. The basketball court is centered by SCSU's original logo, just a SC in a red circle.

The gym has hanging bleachers made of wood and when you step out on them you can actually feel how old they are. The wood squeaks under the pressure of your foot. When Erickson got to the railing to get a better shot of the logo, he said his heart was racing a little because he had the thought that the whole bleacher would come down.

Up at the top of the building by the bleachers there are offices. This would have been where the coaches or team managers would have had a place. The main office was a good size and had two unique additions to them.

In the first addition they had their own full bathroom, stalls and everything (funny enough, there was a microwave in there). In the second was a private balcony. The inside door was nailed shut and the outside door was broken and hanging from years of weather abuse but Erickson says it was truly a head honchos office with this special piece.

The last thing he got to explore was the practice room. In there was all wood floors again and big floor to ceiling windows but the best part was on the wall. There was a big black SCSU with Eastman Fitness Center written over it in Red. It felt like an old boxing gym and you can just imagine the blood, sweat and tears that have fallen to that floor since 1929.