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I have a tendency to be a bit pessimistic when it comes to duck hunting. 

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As a longtime resident of Stillwater/Oak Park Heights, I was dismayed to see the former school board member’s endorsement in the Gazette. Some of my fondest memories include watching my children and grandchildren grow and attend Oak Park Elementary School. One of the biggest heartaches I hav…

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Thirty years ago, I was scared out of my mind. I was young and navigating my way through an unplanned pregnancy. 

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“It’s the oldest Duck Camp in the state.”

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Anyone who loves 1980’s rock and roll music had to shake their head at the news last week on the passing of guitarist Eddie Van Halen at 65 due to cancer. 

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As the coronavirus pandemic continues to wear on, many businesses are struggling.

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Lasagna is not easy to make. Maybe you’re saying to yourself, “but, you haven’t tried mine.”

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I’d like to change things up a bit this week with a photo essay just because I have been blessed to meet and make friends with British ornithologist, John Richardson who is serving as the Fall Count Director of this year’s  bird count on Hawk Ridge in Duluth. All photos were taken by British…

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I’m old enough to have grown up on the Charlie Brown comic strip. Two of the most inalienable moments I remember about it, is the annual Christmas episode on television and when Charlie Brown is about to kick the football, Lucy pulls it away from him and Charlie Brown makes a complete idiot …

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Because you are reading this column, you understand the value of your local newspaper. I think we can all agree on this point, gentle reader.

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I pulled in at Hawk Ridge overlooking Lake Superior and Duluth late in the afternoon following the arrival of autumn, but I was too late. I missed  743 Sharp-shinned Hawk, 22 American Kestrels, 9 Bald Eagles, 9 Red-tailed Hawk, 7 Merlin, 5 Northern Harrier, 3 Osprey, 3 Peregrine Falcon and o…

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I was a skeptic when the email came across my desk.

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 This September was National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, which is especially important to recognize this year as the coronavirus pandemic has had an unprecedented impact on Americans’ mental health whether from the increased economic anxiety or the emotional hardship of losing a love…

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Before I get into my grouse hunt I have to ask why the Robin is our state bird and not the Ruffed Grouse. Don’t get me wrong, I like robins as much as the next person but they aren’t even year round residents. They come in the spring and are outta here in most places around the state by now.…

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If I had to rate what gets people’s blood boiling the quickest, it would have to be in no particular order: weather, politics or how their favorite National Football League team played on Sunday (or Thursday, Monday, Saturday, Tuesday). 

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I must admit, in my spare time, I’m a fan of a good laugh.

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I have enjoyed watching videos on Instagram and YouTube of people decorating cakes. It’s so satisfying watching someone else decorate a gourmet cake in seconds. 

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The population of Western Wisconsin has been exploding for some time now. St. Croix County is the fastest growing county in Wisconsin with a population growth rate of 36%. Other counties growing fast are 4th place Chippewa at 14%, 11th Pierce 12%, while Polk County is growing at 6% rate. Goo…

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The impact of the coronavirus pandemic and measures taken to control its spread have had a huge impact on the workers, homeowners, renters, and business owners in Washington County. Today, more than 5,000 county residents are unemployed than were unemployed in March. That is why the Washingt…

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When talking to Bradley Lutz last week about him being the new Osceola Village Trustee in replacing Tim Anderson,, there was one thing which surprised him. 

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I am writing to take exception to the headline and first paragraph of the report in the August 26th Country Messenger stating that the “city of Scandia taxpayers can expect an eight percent increase in their local property taxes in 2021.”  This statement is false. 

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September 1st has come and gone and with it the beginning of Wisconsin's 2020 fall hunting season starting with dove and the annual early goose and teal seasons. For most of the nation south of the Mason/Dixon Line the opening of dove season is a major event, akin to deer season up here in t…

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Being stuck at home like the rest of the world over these last few months has allowed our family to catch up on TV or movies, which we didn’t see when they were first aired. 

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Sept. 2 marked the 75th anniversary of the official end of World War II. Representatives of the Japanese government signed the instrument of surrender, ending one of the most tumultuous times of the 20th century.

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By the time this column runs, early teal and goose season will be open. 

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Are you loving the cooler weather? I am. My house doesn’t feel like a sauna when I turn the oven on. I can bake again. Yippie.

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After business was done and the new Colorado Teardrop camper was in tow we had two things in mind, camping and trout fishing. Greenback Cutthroats were first on our list. Fly shop fellas in the Rocky Mountains gave us great ideas as we left Denver and headed north. We had thought about hitti…

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Like everything else in this world, different holidays can mean different things to many people. When I think of Labor Day, it’s easy to go back to when I was a child, knowing it was the last day of summer, the final day of the Minnesota State Fair and school starting the following day (at l…

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Every day in Minnesota and across our nation, people rely on the United States Postal Service (USPS) for their medication, paychecks, social security checks, and tax returns. Letter carriers and postal workers are a fundamental part of our country’s infrastructure and provide a vital service…

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Dan Johnson’s “A love letter to local journalism” (The Country Messenger August 19) was a refreshing dose of optimism and appreciation of the potential of our better selves.  It was also a heartening insight into the roles journalists can play in these difficult times.  Yes, Dan, we need jou…

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I do not like messes. In a perfect world, I’d like everything clean and organized. But, having a busy husband, four kids (with significant others), a dog, and a naughty cat, makes it impossible to keep the house clean. 

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The sun was just rising as we crossed the Platte River, a 1050 mile stretch of water that runs across Nebraska before branching into Colorado and Montana then draining into the Missouri River. Here names like Omaha, Kearney and Ogallala remind you that this was and still is cowboy country. P…

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I was asked a couple of months ago what would be five songs that sample your music tastes as well any comments about them. 

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Autumn will soon be here. The signs of its arrival are all-around us: shorter days, cooler evenings, dewy mornings, schools resuming classes and a general, barely discernible change in the air.