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 -- When members of the U.S. Windsurfing Association's (USWA) board of directors met last fall in Fort Walton Beach, Fla., one of their topics of discussion was developing a site for Olympic windsurfing hopefuls to train.
LUVERNE -- The owners of Luverne-based Rural Energy Marketing (REM) will go before the Vermillion, S.D., City Council later this month to tout their proposal to construct an estimated $80 million biodiesel plant about a mile west of town. Loren Forrest said he has had an option on a 290-acre site, located adjacent to the Burlington-Northern Rail line, for nearly two years. "It's a nice, flat piece of ground that you can run an oval track on real easily," said Forrest.
WORTHINGTON -- Eight months after her fourth-place finish in the U.S.Olympic Windsurfing trials in California, 20-yearold Lisa Kremer has returned to her hometown of Worthington and the waves of Lake Okabena to continue her training. Kremer, who first picked up a sailboard at age 13, said that while she may not be competing in the 2009 summer games, she's far from giving up on her dreams of Olympic competition. Two years into her studies at Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa, Kremer is pursuing a degree in nursing and, in the fall, will take on additional credits for a minor
FULDA -- She has battled back from three different bouts with cancer, but an infection following her latest cancer surgery has kept Jeanne Koopman of Fulda in a Sioux Falls, S.D., hospital for more than a month. Now, her family and friends have come together to organize a benefit in her honor. Doctors say the mother of three may never be able to work again following this latest set-back.
ELLSWORTH -- "Pulling Together for Family Fun" is the theme for Ellsworth's annual Family Fun Days celebration Friday through Sunday. Several new activities have been added, according to Ellsworth Optimist president Randy Buntjer. The Optimists organize the celebration. Events get under way on Friday with a Zion Presbyterian Bible School baked potato feed in the Ellsworth school cafeteria from 5 to 7 p.m., followed by crowning of Little Miss Ellsworth at 7 p.m. A co-ed alumni basketball game has been added this year and will begin at 8 p.m. On Saturday, registration begins at 6:45 a.m.
LUVERNE -- This weekend marks the 24th annual Buffalo Days celebration in Luverne, with a wide variety of events planned for Friday night through Sunday afternoon. The festivities get under way with a Buffalo Days Cruise-In from 6:30 to 10 p.m. Friday on Main Street in downtown Luverne. All collectibles are welcome, with parking available for more than 200 cars. Goebies Goldies will perform '50s and '60s music throughout the evening, with food and refreshments served outside by several local establishments.
WORTHINGTON -- Nobles County commissioners on Tuesday tabled a motion to rescind their earlier decision regarding a second option on a 60-acre parcel owned by Elden and Janice Bartz. The property, located along Minnesota 60 north of Worthington, was made available to the county as a potential site for business development. In April, commissioners voted to take a second option on the property that would have them paying $7,500 to, in essence, have first rights to the land if someone came forth to develop it. "At one time, we really needed this," Commissioner Marv Zylstra said.
WORTHINGTON -- An entrepreneurial venture that began at Worthington High School three years ago is receiving a welcome boost thanks to a nearly $3,400 grant high school ag teacher Jeff Rogers and business teacher Gene Lais have garnered. The grant, awarded through the Southwest/West Central Service Cooperative's Center for Rural Entrepreneurship (CORE) program, will be used to expand the equipment in the high school's sign-making class.
WORTHINGTON -- Too often people look at a teenage girl who is pregnant and blame her ... as if all of the fault is on her shoulders. They might laugh or ridicule her. They may even think she is stupid for letting herself get pregnant. That last comment -- that's the one that bothers Sarah the most. Sarah, who agreed to an interview with the Daily Globe if a pseudonym was used, said she isn't stupid.
Editor's note: This is the third installment in a four-part series on teen pregnancy in Nobles County. WORTHINGTON -- With 20 teens in the Worthington School District walking to class this year with a baby bump or as a new mother, one has to wonder why there is such a surge in teen pregnancies. Do we blame educators, parents, clothing designers, television, music or the movies? Are students not getting the message about abstinence or the use of contraceptives?