This year’s puzzle featured vintage board game covers. Several family members worked on the 1,000-piece puzzle, which was completed in about a day and a half. Photo by Jim Palmer

My Perspective: Puzzles are fun, and easy on the brain

January 1, 2017
During my work travels, I often find myself visiting senior living facilities for various reasons. Every facility is a little different from the next. Some have bird aviaries. Some have therapy pools. Some have a nice piano. Some have big ...
When Dale Johansen returned home after three years serving in Vietnam, he was a changed man. He and his wife Betty, talk about their journey in the years following his return home and how Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) affected Dale, his family and their friendships. The two now volunteer with Project New Hope to help veterans and their families cope with PTSD. Photo by Carol Stender

Surviving Vietnam, then PTSD

January 1, 2017
Dale Johansen was a carefree Underwood farm boy when he joined the Army in 1963, but he changed after a tour of duty in Vietnam. A short temper, jumpy nature and hyper vigilance continue to be some of the traits ...
Marcie Carper, of Little Falls, struggled with a gambling addiction before receiving treatment and now works as a state approved gambling treatment provider through the Northstar Problem Gambling Alliance, a Roseville-based nonprofit that includes online resources and a hotline. Photo by Sandra Videen

Feeding an addiction, one slot at a time

January 1, 2017
Marcie Carper never imagined she would have a problem with gambling and would have almost certainly bet you that she would have been the last person to be addicted to gambling. The 82-year-old resident of Little Falls is a widowed ...
Brenda and Udean Sargent, of Glenwood, pictured on a trip to Italy in 2013. Brenda was diagnosed with stage 3C ovarian cancer in 2006 and was given about five years to live. That was 10 years ago. The trip to Italy was to see one of her three boys, Brock, who was stationed in Italy at the time. The trip was possible thanks to help from the Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Association, who awarded Brenda with the “Dream Award.” The award was used to purchase plane tickets to Italy. Contributed photo

‘I have beat the odds’

January 1, 2017
Glenwood woman has been battling ovarian cancer for 10+ years Brenda Sargent was 46 when she first started feeling like something wasn’t quite right. She didn’t know at the time, but she was likely experiencing the early stages of ovarian ...
Walter Lehrke, of Gibbon, likes to explore new places. Last summer, he took his 3-wheel motorcycle on a road trip and helped at a Habitat for Humanity work site in Montana.   Lehrke has traveled more than 78,000 miles on his Trike since 2001, including 5,000 miles on his drive to Montana.			               Contributed photo

A hammer and a Honda

January 1, 2017
Gibbon man takes a road trip, helps build Habitat home During the past two years, whenever Walter Lehrke, 82, of rural Gibbon gets on his Honda Goldwing Trike 3-wheel motorcycle he thinks about his deceased wife, Darlyne. And then he ...
One of the unique murals from artist, Tammy Ortegon. 				                Photo by Caryl Hunter

Sharing art in unique ways

January 1, 2017
Minneapolis artist spreads joy through her murals There are a few murals around Minneapolis, but Tammy Ortegon’s paintings have a personality to them that makes them quite inviting and unique. When you first meet the artist, you just know she ...
Mora is home to the largest Dala Horse in the United States. It’s 25 feet high and weighs 3,000 pounds. Photo by Cathy Nelson

Mora’s Swedish roots

January 1, 2017
City has largest Dala Horse in the United States
Mora is home to the largest Dala Horse in the United States. It’s 25 feet high and weighs 3,000 pounds. Photo by Cathy Nelson
Travelers who drive north of the Twin ...
Wally and Sharon Lutz with some of the items they recently designed and made in their Montevideo home. Photo by Scott Thoma

A creative household

January 1, 2017
Couple happily designs, builds and thread-crochets through their retirement years
Wally and Sharon Lutz with some of the items they recently designed and made in their Montevideo home. Photo by Scott Thoma
“We each like to do our own thing,” ...
Stanley Syverson steps off his deck for a long walk through the woods. His walks often take up much of the day. 
Photo by Bev Ahlquist

‘It just makes me feel good’

January 1, 2017
Man, 69, has walked 30+ miles a day for many years
Stanley Syverson steps off his deck for a long walk through the woods. His walks often take up much of the day.
Photo by Bev Ahlquist
His claim to ...
Heritage sweetgrass and chocolate turkeys raised on Kornell Erickson’s farm near Willmar. Erickson has been crossbreeding turkeys for years to get these varieties. Photo by Scott Thoma

Birds of a different feather

December 1, 2016
After crossbreeding his turkeys for many years, Willmar man finds perfect ‘chocolate turkey’ blend Kornell Erickson, of Willmar, had been working on perfecting a chocolate turkey for several years until he got the results he wanted.
Heritage sweetgrass and chocolate
...
Members of the Central Minnesota Woodcarvers Association (standing, L to R),  Al Gerads, Brenda Lodermeier, Ken Ramler, Mike Lodermeier, (seated L to R), Curt Hutchens, Ron Lorenz, worked on this project which raised over $800 for Quiet Oaks Hospice. Contributed photo

Carving for causes

December 1, 2016
CMWA meets monthly to carve at Whitney, recognized for efforts with ‘Rock On Award’ One hundred and sixty nine. That’s how many comfort crosses were carved. It was the summer when Pam Witte’s mother became ill, and a parishioner from ...
Restored Abraham Lincoln statue at rededication and unveiling ceremony. Photo by Cathy Nelson

Lincoln statue restored

December 1, 2016
The mayor of St. Cloud recites the Gettysburg Address following a performance by Lincoln Elementary school children. Photo by Cathy Nelson
A restored Abraham Lincoln statue now stands proudly in downtown St. Cloud. A few years ago, the 98-year-old statue ...
There are no buildings in the area quite like the Stearns County Courthouse, which was erected nearly 100 years ago. Photo by Frank Lee

A ticking landmark

December 1, 2016
Story behind the Stearns County Courthouse clock and dome
The historic terra cotta dome sits atop the Stearns County Courthouse building, which was completed in 1922 in downtown St. Cloud at a cost of $850,000. The dome features four clock
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