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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WORTHINGTON -- The clouds just can't seem to pass by southwest Minnesota and northwest Iowa these days without leaving behind cool days and rain showers -- two things farmers don't need as they continue to get this year's crops in the field. Despite being one week beyond the May 10 optimum planting date for corn in this region, Worthington's Extension crops educator Liz Stahl said farmers may not be destined for low yields if they have yet to plant all of their corn seed. "Last year, we were looking at a real challenging planting season, too," Stahl said.
WORTHINGTON -- Fifth-graders Blake Rogers and Melody Veen agreed that becoming a published author feels "pretty good" as they continued to celebrate with their classmates Tuesday morning. The students and their teacher, Sandy Ahlberg, learned Friday that their class-compiled, 40-page book, "What We are Thankful For ...," was selected as a winner in Nationwide Learning Inc.'s National Book Challenge. For their efforts, the class received two framed certificates -- one recognizing them as a finalist and another honoring them as winners, blue ribbons for each student and a $100 check for Ahlber
ADRIAN -- The Adrian City Council voted on Monday to establish smoke-free parks and recreation areas, becoming the third community within Nobles-Rock Public Health Service (NRPHS) territory to do so. Council members voted 4-1 to enact the policy, revising action they took late last year that made all city-owned buildings and vehicles smoke-free as of Jan. 1. Adrian High School Partners in Prevention (PIP) members Lacy Weidert and Courtney Thier made a power point presentation to inform the council prior to its vote.
WORTHINGTON -- A week into his new job as Nobles County's Emergency Management director, Dan Anderson is still learning all of the duties his new job entails. The job, newly designated as a department head post, involves bringing agencies together to work toward common goals, keeping the county's emergency operations plan up to date and planning various response drills for emergency personnel. Anderson comes to Worthington with experience in city planning and Geographic Information System (GIS) technology.
WORTHINGTON -- Ken Thompson and his wife, Helen, were once avid mall walkers -- they'd go every day, seven days a week. But after she returned home from a brief hospitalization, she could no longer get around without the aid of a walker. Helen needed someone to be home with her at all times -- a necessity sure to be a life-changing event not only for her, but for her husband as well. During his wife's hospital stay, Thompson learned of RSVP's respite care program.
HERON LAKE -- Students in Louise Worm's community project class from Southwest Star Concept High School tried to beat out the rain Wednesday afternoon to complete a second rain garden project in Heron Lake in as many years. Last year, Worm's Greenhouse Management class developed four rain gardens -- three in Okabena and one in Heron Lake -- in a cooperative project with the Heron Lake Watershed District, which provided cost-share assistance.
WORTHINGTON -- Soon-to-be parents face many challenges, from preparing a new room for baby to stocking up on the essentials. While many choices are to be made, nothing is often bigger than the decision parents face about who will care for their new bundle of joy. Karen DeBoer, director of Southwestern Minnesota Opportunity Council's Child Care Resource and Referral program, said parents -- whether expecting their first child or their fourth -- all face the daycare dilemma. "There definitely is a shortage of infant care," said DeBoer, adding that there isn't an abundance of providers to care
WORTHINGTON -- Two months after Nobles County Commissioners denied a request by Brent Wintz to construct a second hog confinement building on his farm in Indian Lake Township, they moved Tuesday to accept his application for a conditional use permit. Wintz will now be allowed to construct a 102- by 106-foot total confinement barn on his property in the northeast quarter of the southeast quarter of Section 1, Indian Lake Township. In March, Wintz was denied a conditional use permit by the county's planning and zoning commission and county commissioners.
HERON LAKE -- The Heron Lake Watershed District (HLWD) accepted the 2006 Environmental Education award Wednesday at the Minnesota Environmental Initiative's 13th annual banquet in Minneapolis. The honor, considered the Academy Award for environmental service, was presented to the district for its Watershed Assistance Through Education and Resources (WATER) program.
ROUND LAKE -- When soldiers go off to war, their families are left behind to wait for their return -- and to wonder what they can do to help in the effort. Such is the case for Lori Lanphere Kruger, whose husband, Scott, is a sergeant with the B-Battery of the 1-125th Field Artillery, a National Guard unit based in Jackson and Fairmont. Since her husband left for Iraq in March, Kruger and the Family Readiness Group she leads have pondered what they could do to help deliver hope to the Iraqi people. Thanks to a recent newsletter sent to families of soldiers in the 125th (also known as the Re