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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LUVERNE -- Luverne Mayor Andy Steensma set the pace by plopping a pie of dried buffalo poop into a toilet during the annual buffalo chip toss Saturday afternoon in Luverne.
LAKEFIELD -- Recent rains may have kept the parking lot from getting finished on time, but it didn't keep kids away from opening day at the Lakefield Family Aquatic Center on Saturday. Ten months after the community's aging swimming pool, built in 1963, was closed and demolished, the new, $1.5 million aquatic center's completion was celebrated with a 12:30 p.m. ribbon cutting.
WINDOM -- With 5,000 Minnesota National Guard troops expected to return from duty in Iraq before August, families, friends and communities are gearing up to welcome the soldiers home. Troops from the Luverne-Pipestone and Jackson-Fairmont National Guard units, serving with the 1-34th "Red Bull" Brigade, are among those returning from deployment. In preparation of the troop return, Windom will host a reintegration meeting at 7 p.m. Thursday, at the American Lutheran Church in Windom.
ASHTON, Iowa -- Raising $100,000 to remodel the American Legion Community Building may have sounded like an unreasonable feat for a town of less than 500 residents, but the people of Ashton are proving it can be done. In less than two months, community members have raised more than half of the money needed to expand and improve the restrooms and construct a 20- by 96-foot addition on the building's east side. Stan Johnson serves as chairman of the Community Building project, leading a committee of a dozen local businesspeople and townsfolk who volunteered to help plan the addition and organi
LUVERNE -- People who think racing two turkeys down 10th Street in Worthington is funny haven't begun to experience the hilarity that takes place at some community festivals. Take Buffalo Days in Luverne, for example. One of the celebration's many events -- and likely the most talked about year after year -- is the buffalo chip throwing contest. What is a buffalo chip throwing contest?
LUVERNE -- Less than two years after the seed was planted to convert the former Luverne Community Hospital into a teaching facility, Minnesota West celebrated with an open house of its educational classrooms and training centers Tuesday in Luverne. Orientation is Friday for the 14 students enrolled in the two-year radiologic technology program, and the 19 students in the one-year surgical technology program. Classes for both programs will begin on Monday. "We filled radiologic technology really quickly," said Gary Gillin, Minnesota West's Dean of Communication and Enrollment.
ROUND LAKE -- Edgar Schultz was just 12 years old when he left the only home he ever knew and ventured into the working world as a hired farm hand for neighbors in Rost Township and points beyond in Jackson County. Still a mere boy, he was a self-taught tractor operator. At the time, tractors were beginning to take the place of horse power on the rural Minnesota landscape. "I was a professional Farmall driver," he said with a grin. "I worked out for room and board.
LUVERNE -- A soldier with the 1-125th Field Artillery of the Luverne-Pipestone National Guard has been injured in Iraq. Specialist Andrew Hanson, the 21-year-old son of Jack and Felicia Hanson of Luverne, was patrolling and providing security in an unidentified area of Iraq at about 11:30 p.m. Monday (Iraq time) when the Humvee he was driving hit an improvised explosive device (IED). "As of this time, he is in Germany -- he arrived there this morning," his mother said on Wednesday. "His right leg is amputated below the knee, and his left leg is amputated at the knee.
LUVERNE -- Luverne realtor Gene Cragoe is the new owner of the former Luverne City Hall, located at 203 E. Main Street. Cragoe was the lone bidder on the property, which was offered for sale on sealed bids after city offices moved into the former Luverne Hospital. Cragoe's bid of $35,700 was officially accepted during Tuesday evening's Luverne City Council meeting.
WORTHINGTON -- Finding a rural address in Nobles County, while made considerably easier with the 911 address system and street signage installed several years ago, remains a concern for emergency vehicles tasked with providing quick response in the case of fire or medical emergency. That was the message Dan Anderson, Nobles County emergency management director, and Stephen Heimgartner, chair of the Nobles County Mutual Aid Association, delivered to county commissioners on Tuesday.