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 -- Five property owners went before the Nobles County Board of Appeal and Equalization in Worthington Tuesday night in hopes of having the assessed value of their property lowered.
WORTHINGTON - Riley, a beautiful little Sheltie, tried to shy away from LaLa, a Golden Retriever-Husky mix who looked mildly interested in the smaller dog. And then there was BayBay, a young Rottweiler who seemed more anxious to run than to pose for a photograph. The trio of dogs had been joined by a couple of other canines Monday morning, but when the rain started to fall, a trip to the puppy park wasn't exactly ideal for the dog owners. Worthington has had a puppy park along First Avenue Southwest since 2006.
BIGELOW -- A home in Bigelow that has several inches of standing water in the basement, a junk yard surrounding the property and rabbit hutches scattered about -- some with at least a foot of rabbit feces piled underneath -- has been declared a public nuisance by Nobles-Rock Community Health Services (NRCHS). Jason Kloss, sanitarian for the local public health agency, said the homeowners at 2827 Maple St. have until June 19 to make requested improvements to the property.
ELLSWORTH -- Nobles County's southwestern-most community will mark its 125th anniversary during a weekend celebration that begins today and continues through Sunday in Ellsworth. Ellsworth Family Fun Days officially gets under way with the crowning of Little Miss Ellsworth at 7 p.m. tonight in the high school gymnasium. There are seven young girls, between the ages of 6 and 9, vying for the crown this year.
WORTHINGTON -- Nobles-Rock Community Health Services will receive $716,000 in grants over the course of the next three years to re-establish its tobacco prevention coalition, as well as to target obesity and healthy living in the two counties. NRCHS health educator Paula Anderson told members of the NRCHS board of directors Wednesday that the agency was chosen to receive a grant from Clearway Minnesota that amounts to $140,000 each year for the next three years. The grant is slated to start on July 1.
WORTHINGTON -- Representatives from the U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development, Southwest Minnesota Housing Partnership and local dignitaries will gather at noon today in Worthington to celebrate June Homeownership Month and recognize a local woman and her son as first-time homebuyers. USDA Rural Development and the SWMHP worked together to get Delma Gonzales and her 16-year-old son Billy Rey Vallejo into a home of their own in Worthington.
WORTHINGTON -- Abang Ojullu sat in the middle of her living room floor on Sunday morning and told the story of her first Fourth of July experience in the United States. Born in Sudan, Ojullu knew well the sounds of war. The constant battles, the sounds of gunfire and the need to flee -- they were all a part of her past. So, when she was living inside a small apartment in Sioux Falls, S.D., and heard the "boom, boom" in the distance on the night of July 4, 1994, she grabbed her infant daughter and her 4-year-old son and hid in the closet.
WORTHINGTON -- Within a 10-day span, emergency personnel from Nobles County responded to two potentially serious events at area agriculture processing facilities -- a fire at Minnesota Soybean Processors (MnSP) in Brewster on May 23, and an anhydrous ammonia leak at JBS on Tuesday. While no one was injured in the soybean plant fire, the entire town of Brewster was evacuated and more than 20 fire departments from Minnesota and Iowa responded to the scene.
LUVERNE -- Honoring its prairie heritage and recognizing the buffalo herds that roam the Blue Mounds, the community of Luverne is marking the 25th anniversary of its annual Buffalo Days celebration this weekend. Events get under way Friday night and continue through Sunday. "This is a pretty good track record of everybody working together for the same means," said Luverne Area Chamber of Commerce Director Jane Wildung Lanphere of the community's long-standing celebration.
WORTHINGTON -- Investigators with the Minnesota Occupational Safety and Health Administration were on site at JBS on Wednesday, a day after an ammonia leak inside the pork processing facility sent 51 employees to the hospital. James Honerman, communications director for Minnesota OSHA, said one of the agency's top priorities is to investigate when three or more people are taken to the hospital as a result of a workplace accident. "We're going to interview employees who were working at the time, as well as interview the company's safety workers and review the training (provided) to employees,