Julie Buntjer joined the Daily Globe newsroom in December 2003, after working more than nine years for weekly newspapers. A native of Worthington and graduate of Worthington High School, then-Worthington Community College and South Dakota State University, she has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism.
At the Daily Globe, Julie covers the agricultural beat, as well as Nobles County government, watersheds, community news and feature stories. In her spare time, she enjoys needlework (cross-stitch and hardanger embroidery), reading, travel, fishing and spending time with family.
Find more of her stories of farm life, family and various other tidbits at www.farmbleat.areavoices.com.
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BEAVER CREEK -- He's spent 20 years traveling the Arctic, but on Monday, it was the wind turbines and an ethanol plant that garnered the attention of renowned polar explorer Will Steger. Steger, on a whirlwind excursion through southwest Minnesota, made stops at the Agri-Energy LLC ethanol plant in Luverne Monday morning before visiting the Minwind Biodiesel Peaking Plant in Beaver Creek. Later stops were planned in Pipestone at the Jim Nichols wind farm and at the Northern Plains Dairy's methane digester in rural St.
LAKEFIELD -- "It's boots and chaps; It's cowboy hats; It's spurs and latigo; It's the ropes and the reins; And the joy and the pain; And they call the thing Rodeo..." That song, made popular by country music artist Garth Brooks in the 1990s, prepared attendees for what was to come Saturday night on the rodeo grounds of Sparks Park in Lakefield. Spectators filled the stands on both sides of the arena to watch cowboys and cowgirls beat the clock in the 17th annual MRA- (Minnesota Rodeo Association) and URA- (United Rodeo Association) sanctioned event.
WORTHINGTON -- Fourteen-year-old Tanner Baumgard sat in the bleachers and watched as people walked along the luminaried track Friday evening. He listened as young girls belted out tunes at the microphone; and his parents sat at his side thankful to be at this place -- at this time -- experiencing their first Relay for Life event with their curly-haired son. A year ago, Mike and Deann Baumgard weren't sure they would still have Tanner with them for this year's Relay. In April 2005, their son was diagnosed with neuroblastoma.
WORTHINGTON -- Estimated market values for Nobles County agricultural land have risen in all but one year during the last two decades, reaching an all-time high in 2006 at more than $1 billion. According to recent ag land sales, the trend is likely to continue, said Nobles County assessor Byron Swart. There were 31 agricultural parcels -- a total of 3,118 acres -- sold between Oct. 1, 2004 and Sept. 30, 2005, garnering an average of $2,485 per acre.
WORTHINGTON -- "When my ancestors came, it was different." Dr.
WORTHINGTON -- A year after Nobles County Pheasants Forever purchased 120 acres of land -- 80 in Olney Township and 40 in Bigelow Township -- Scott Rall and Les Johnson joined DNR Area Wildlife Manager Wendy Kruger in asking county commissioners Tuesday to approve transfer of the land to the state's Department of Natural Resources. The transfer, which commissioners unanimously approved, will allow the DNR to take over management of the grounds and establish them as public wildlife management areas.
Editor's Note: This is the fourth and final installment in a four-part series this week on the renewable fuel industry. BREWSTER -- A short distance north of Brewster, Minnesota Soybean Processors (MnSP) is converting soybeans grown in the tri-state area into a renewable fuel. Unlike the first three stories in this four-part series that focused on ethanol production, MnSP is in the business of producing biodiesel. The plant completed construction of a 30-million-gallon capacity biodiesel refinery in 2005, an addition that allowed the plant to further process the crude oil extracted from soy
Editor's Note: This is the third in a four-part series this week on the renewable fuel industry. Tomorrow, we complete the series with a look at biodiesel. LUVERNE -- Amid a family strawberry patch and rows of garden vegetables stand clumps of hardy grass that, come fall, will reach about 10 to 12 feet tall. Most people likely see the clumps for what they are -- plantings of a simple ornamental grass.
Editor's Note: This is the second in a four-part series this week on the renewable fuel industry.
Editor's Note: This is the first in a four-part series this week on the renewable fuel industry. Tomorrow, learn what researchers are doing to expand ethanol production. SIBLEY, Iowa -- People driving flexible fuel vehicles these days are cashing in on the savings when they pull up to the pump. E-85, a gasoline blended with 85 percent ethanol, is -- in some communities -- 45 cents less per gallon than regular unleaded gasoline. The price difference has created demand for flex-fuel vehicles, as well as for more pumps that carry E-85.