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Looking Back: 2006 -- Central Elementary slated for demolition

One year ago A contest was announced to name the new complex that Brian Pellowski, owner of PBK Investments, intended to build in place of the former Northland Mall in Worthington. A $500 prize was being offered for the winning name. Additionally...

One year ago

A contest was announced to name the new complex that Brian Pellowski, owner of PBK Investments, intended to build in place of the former Northland Mall in Worthington. A $500 prize was being offered for the winning name. Additionally, the Worthington City Council approved a Tax Increment Financing plan for the Northland Mall property and certain adjoining property.

Alltech announced its intention to purchase Ridley Inc., which was good news for Worthington’s Ridley Block Operations, according to local manager Paul Standafer. Ridley was a leading commercial animal nutrition company in North America, and the purchase amount was $521 million. The Worthington operation employed about 30 people and manufactured Crystalyx, a blended molasses nutritional product for cattle, as well as the Golden Lyk line of compressed nutritional blocks for livestock.

Families from across the tri-state area gathered at the Wat Lao Siri Buddharam Temple, Worthington, for the first of two Lao New Year celebrations this week. Sunday’s event included a water festival, which gave temple members an opportunity to give spiritual blessings to support the kindness of their parents, teachers and ancestors who had died. Water was also poured on the land for Mother Earth.

Owners of Capital Armament broke ground Monday for their new facility in Sibley, Iowa.

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The District 518 school board approved plans for a $5.5 million addition to Worthington High School.

Five years ago

The Reading Community Players presented “Lie, Cheat and Genuflect” at the Reading Community Center. Sandy Wood directed the comedic production.

Nearly 200 women gathered at BenLee’s Cafe in downtown Worthington Monday evening for the 39th annual Salute to Women banquet.

A groundbreaking ceremony took place for a major expansion project at the AGCO facility in Jackson. The 75,000-square-foot addition to AGCO’s assembly building was the heart of the project and would result in an additional manufacturing line for the 8600 and 6400 series of Massey Ferguson wheel tractors, as well as increase production of the Challenger MT600C series.

Commissioned choral works by Mexican composers Jesus Echevarria and Diana Syrse were premiered at the Cantare! Community Concert at Worthington’s Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center. Students from Prairie Elementary School and Worthington High School performed the compositions.

A house at 809 Burlington Ave., Worthington, was a total loss after a fire that started in its backyard spread to the basement, moved into the house’s walls and up the roof. No one was injured during the course of the fire and its extinguishing.

Students at Westbrook-Walnut Grove High School worked with renowned producer/director Richard Lewis (a producer of “CSA: Crime Scene Investigation” for nine years) on film projects this week.

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10 years ago

Worthington Public Utilities achieved a diamond level rating following a review by the Renewable Public Power Providers, an American Public Power Association program that encouraged optimal service for public power utilities. WPU was one of only seven public power utilities, out of over 2,000 public power utilities across the U.S., to receive the rating.

Two men, ages 21 and 23, were arrested early Tuesday after breaking in to Ellsworth High School and inflicting serious vandalism and burglarizing the school. An anonymous call from a citizen aided in their apprehension.

The citizens involved with the Friends of Central School were unable to raise a targeted $300,000 by the necessary deadline, and combined with the lack of support from local government entities, Worthington’s historic Central Elementary School (an art deco structure that dated to 1931) was scheduled for demolition in the coming months.

A groundbreaking ceremony took place for the Freedom Shore Veterans’ Memorial Park project on the south shore of Worthington’s Lake Okabena. Committee chair Mike Kuhle said, “This has really been a testament to Nobles County and Worthington. ... I’m really proud of how the community is stepping up to the plate.”

The City of Worthington Parks Department was considering the possibility of creating a puppy park.

25 years ago

Showing this week at Worthington’s Northland Cinema were “Silence of the Lambs,” “Out for Justice” and “L.A. Story.”
More than 300 people gave blood during the recent American Red Cross draw for Type O blood in Worthington. Of the 305 donors, 85 were first-time blood drive participants.

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Worthington’s Housing and Redevelopment Authority learned it would receive an $837,900 grant from the Housing and Urban Development department, with the funds to be used to construct 10 units of subsidized single-family dwellings.

The Turkey Trotters Square Dance Club celebrated its 40th anniversary with an event at Worthington’s Central Elementary School.

A lottery ticket worth $3,000 was sold within the first 45 minutes of sales opportunities at the L & B Grocery in Reading. Meryle Johnson was the lucky winner.

Three students at Worthington Community College received the system-wide Chancellor’s Award of Excellence. They were Diana Donkersloot of Hartley, Iowa, and Wendy Zierke and Jill Rotschafer, both of Worthington.

More than 30 professions were represented at the Career Exploration Fair that took place at Worthington High School.

Charles Mausbach was elected president and CEO of Community First National Bank, Windom.

50 years ago

Water that was collecting in the foundation excavations of the future new Worthington fire hall on Third Avenue was hampering construction progress. City Engineer Maynard Lueth said the water was “nothing serious,” however, and pumps were making headway at removing the water.

Advertised specials at Gordy’s Super Valu in Worthington this week included three pounds of Super Valu coffee for $1.89, a 50-pound bag of Gold Medal flour for $3.69, a 100-pound bag of Pontiac select seed potatoes for $2.79 and a pound of home-cured beef bacon for 69 cents.

Seven serious vehicle crashes occurred over the weekend in the vicinity of Worthington, with several people requiring hospitalization for injuries. One of the crashes occurred around midnight Saturday one-half mile west of Okabena when a 19-year-old Okabena man came to rest in the middle of a collapsed bridge over Okabena Creek. Two Pipestone County men, ages 20 and 25, were seriously injured in an accident at 1 a.m. Sunday on the east edge of Pipestone, and two other late-night/early morning accidents were on the list, with one occurring three miles south of Bigelow just after 12 a.m. Sunday (involving a 19-year-old driver and 20-year-old passenger) and the other near Luverne at 12:30 a.m. Sunday involving a vehicle driven by a 21-year-old Luverne man with a 21-year-old passenger.

Three Worthington High School students earned B ratings at the state speech contest Saturday at the state speech contest held at Hamline University, St. Paul. They were Arden Mahlberg, extemporaneous reading; Byron Bunge, original oratory; and Jeff Flynn, extemporaneous speaking.

85 years ago

The old Miller home was in the process of being relocated from Third Avenue, Worthington, to the lot at the “end of the pavement near the lake” in Worthington. The “venerable residence” was built as the home of Minnesota’s war governor, Stephen Miller, who established his home in Worthington in 1878. At that time, he was employed by the St. Paul & Sioux City railroad as field agent, a position he’d first assumed in 1871 while headquartered in Windom. After Governor Miller’s death in August 1881, the home saw several owners, among them Rev. J.W. Lewis, early-day Methodist pastor, and George Day, a prominent Worthington business man.

Jacobson & Jacobson of Minneapolis were chosen by the Worthington board of education as architects under the proposed school plant betterments to be the basis of a bond issue, upon which the Worthington voters were to vote in a special election in the coming month. The firm was to proceed at once to prepare sketches for the improvements, which included a grade building of 24 rooms and a gymnasium-auditorium addition to the present high school building.

Mrs. Chris Larson, Worthington, was pleasantly surprised by her brother, John Madsen of Holyoke, Mass., who alighted at her door from the motor car in which he and his nephew had driven out to see her. It was the first time the brother and sister had seen each other for 41 years.

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