Julie Buntjer joined the Globe newsroom in December 2003, after working more than nine years for weekly newspapers. A native of Worthington, she has a bachelor's degree in agriculture journalism. Find more of her stories of farm life, family and various other tidbits at farmbleat.areavoices.com.
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WORTHINGTON -- In a 3-2 decision, the Nobles County Board of Commissioners on Tuesday approved both new and increased fees in the county's public works department for everything from driveway construction to utility installation, moving permits for over length, over height, overweight and over width vehicles, and for widening intersections for over width vehicle traffic. Commissioners David Benson, Marv Zylstra and Vern Leistico voted in favor of the fee implementation. Nobles County Public Works Director Stephen Schnieder said that since the department cut approximately 15 percent from its
WORTHINGTON -- Worthington has hit a new low -- a bitterly cold, stay-in-your-home, don't-start-your-car kind of low. Saturday morning's minus 31 degree temperature shattered the community's previous record low of minus 25, set in 1974. The forecast for this Saturday has the potential to break another record, according to Kyle Weisser, a lead forecaster with the National Weather Service office in Sioux Falls, S.D. "The winds will really pick up -- up to 35 miles per hour (on Thursday) -- and temperatures will fall below zero," Weisser said.
PIPESTONE -- David and Marlyce Logan of rural Pipestone recently earned the grand prize in the Friends of Minnesota Barns Barn of the Year competition. Their barn received top honors in the farm use division. The non-farm use Barn of the Year award went to Carl and Wanda Erickson's rural Hawley barn, while runners-up in the second annual contest were barns owned by LeRoy Grewe of Gaylord, Mike and Jean Kauffmann of Arlington, Gary and Marjory Becker of Marshall and Ruth Miller of Buffalo.
WORTHINGTON -- Nobles-Rock Community Health Services, with help from the Southwest Minnesota Chapter of the American Red Cross and Nobles County Emergency Management, distributed 1,525 doses of the H1N1 flu vaccine during a public clinic Wednesday in Worthington. NRCHS director Brad Meyer said they had a little more than 1,600 doses available. "When we got there at 9 a.m., there were already people lined up for the 10 a.m. clinic," Meyer said. For the first two hours of the clinic, he estimated most people endured at least an hour-long wait.
WORTHINGTON -- At the age of 88, Worthington's Jake Dekker said things happened during his tour of duty throughout Europe in World War II that can be forgotten, but the two things he most wants to forget remain etched in his senses today -- the sight and the smell of death. Dead soldiers, dead livestock -- they are the casualties of war one can't ignore. Despite the bad, there were some positives that came out of World War II -- the liberations, the celebrations, the jubilation. "I'll never forget the liberation," said Dekker.
PIPESTONE -- More than 20 agricultural lenders, ag businessmen and farmers gathered at the Calumet Inn in Pipestone Wednesday for an agricultural listening session with Minnesota Department of Agriculture Deputy Commissioner Jim Boerboom. At a time when pork and dairy producers continue to struggle through economic challenges, crop farmers can't compete with the high price of land, and the food versus fuel debate remains a hot topic in places like metropolitan Minnesota, those who gathered were hoping for a little good news in agriculture. Boerboom said the state has "carved out a reputatio
WORTHINGTON -- Two words can pretty much sum up the 2009 crop year in southwest Minnesota -- weather delays. By the last week in April, 40 percent of the state's corn crop had been planted, along with 2 percent of the state's soybean acres. Then came the rains. Storms in early May dumped several inches of rain across the region, forcing farmers to pull their planters and tractors from the fields for days. "We got a couple inches of rain in the last two days," said Ron Obermoller of Brewster on May 8. He said farmers needed to be patient, which is always a difficult task in the spring.
BREWSTER -- There were no injuries, no lives lost and no mass explosions, but when a fire broke out at Minnesota Soybean Processors on May 23, more than 20 fire departments from across southwest Minnesota and northwest Iowa responded to the scene with manpower, tanker trucks, aerials and turn-out gear. The call came into the Nobles County Sheriff's Office shortly before 10 p.m. on the Saturday night of Memorial Day weekend.
ADRIAN -- It was a Christmas tragedy and a Christmas miracle all rolled into one very long day for Jeff Bullerman and his family on Friday. The rural Adrian farmer awoke that morning to find much of the roof on one of his 100- by 344-foot cattle feeder barns collapsed under the weight of snow, with cattle trapped underneath. Within hours, family, friends and neighbors -- estimates are between 30 and 50 people -- had arrived on the scene to help remove sheets of metal and wooden rafters from the pole-type building and save the animals they could.
LUVERNE -- Johnnie Johnson is fondly referred to as a triple-decker by some of the staff at the Royal C. Johnson Veterans Administration Hospital in Sioux Falls, S.D. The nickname refers to the collection of medals Johnson earned while serving in World War II -- the Purple Heart, Bronze Star and Navy Commendation. Johnson, of Luverne, is among more than 60 World War II veterans who have already submitted applications to take part in the first ever Southwest Minnesota Honor Flight, planned in the spring of 2010.