View News Entries

Animal adoption event on Saturday in Worthington


WORTHINGTON – Have you been looking for a furry companion? Now is the perfect chance to find that special pet!

The Tracy Area Animal Rescue is having an adoption event from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Worthington Tractor Supply. Stop in to meet cats and dogs available for adoption. Tracy Area Animal Rescue is a 501(c)3 organization.

Songwriter, poetry and art contest in conjunction with Michael Martin Murphey concert


WORTHINGTON – In association with the upcoming Michael Martin Murphey concert, the Worthington Memorial Auditorium is sponsoring a Cowboy Songwriting, Poetry and Art Contest.

Murphey will be performing April 11 at the Auditorium, and the winners of the poetry and songwriting contest will perform their pieces during the show. The winners of the art concert will have their pieces displayed in the lobby. All winners will be invited to a VIP session with Murphey the day of the concert.

Age classes are K - 4th grade, 5th - 8th, 9th - 12th and College Students. Art, poems and lyrics submitted must be original work. Contestants can submit one each of artwork, poems or songs. This is strictly an amateur contest. Each submittal must include student’s name, email, school, grade, phone number and town. All entries are due by April 6. Winners will be announced April 9.

Questions can be directed to 507-376-9101. Work must be submitted by email to

Gov. Dayton hopes to crack down on illegal poaching


ST. PAUL – In the wake of numerous high-profile instances of illegal poaching activity in Minnesota, Governor Mark Dayton has proposed significant reforms to Minnesota’s poaching laws this session. As a life-long hunter and angler, Dayton is pushing hard to enact more stringent penalties for those who intentionally violate the state’s hunting and fishing laws. By enacting more severe consequences for these crimes, Dayton and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR) hope to deter illegal poaching, and ensure these criminal acts are properly and thoroughly punished.

Dayton’s poaching reform proposal would enact stiffer criminal penalties and longer license revocations for anyone who unlawfully takes and possesses significant numbers of wild animals. The Governor’s proposal would establish a new felony-level penalty for poaching, and revoke game and fish licenses and privileges for a period of up to ten years. Current law only includes up to a gross misdemeanor penalty for poaching and license revocations of up to only five years.

DNR Commissioner Tom Landwehr said gross over-limit violations are not accidental and the reforms being championed by the governor reflect the values of responsible Minnesota hunters and anglers.

Minnesota’s game and fish laws are intended to balance and maintain healthy populations of wild animals, recreational hunting and fishing opportunities, and sustainable commercial uses – now and for future generations. Under the Governor’s proposal, the felony penalty for poaching would apply to individuals who unlawfully take animals above a restitution value of $2,000. Gross over-limit penalty thresholds are based on the wildlife restitution values set in law, which include four or more deer, two or more trophy deer, five or more bears or turkeys, 40 or more ducks, geese, pheasant, grouse, or salmon and 67 or more walleye or Northern pike.

March 27 news


WORTHINGTON – A Worthington woman is facing seven felony forgery counts after allegedly paying $1,000 for another person’s identity and using it to work and register a vehicle.

According to the criminal complaint filed in Nobles County District Court, the victim contacted the Worthington Police Department after applying for a job through a employment company and being told that her name was already in use. The company had a social security number, birth certificate, address and phone number on file. The woman called the phone number and talked to someone who said she had purchased the documents from the victim’s mother.

Authorities obtained a warrant and obtained documents and a photo ID from the employment company that pertained to the victim’s name. They found two Worthington addresses – one on Thompson Avenue and one on Seventh Avenue. At the Seventh Avenue address, a woman at the door said she had never heard of the victim’s name. The same thing occurred at the Thompson address.

During the investigation, an officer discovered a black Honda Accord had been registered in the victim’s name. The victim said she did not own that car. In mid-March, the officer was on patrol and saw a Honda Accord with the matching license plate driving down the street in Worthington. He initiated a traffic stop and spoke with the male driver and female passenger. The female passenger looked similar to the suspect in the photo ID taken from the employment company. She identified herself with a Guatemalan ID as Sandra Sabastian Ramirez de Lopez, age 20.

Ramirez de Lopez said the vehicle belonged to a friend. She said she lives with her husband and sister on Seventh Avenue. During an ensuing interview, she told the officer she has heard of the victim’s name and knows her mother. Later, under questioning, she allegedly admitted she had purchased documents from the victim’s mother for $1,000 and said the victim had called her approximately a month ago.

Ramirez de Lopez, who is charged with four counts of aggravated forgery, three counts of forgery, a count of receiving stolen property and identify theft, is being held at the Nobles County Jail on $40,000 bail. She has a court appearance coming up next week.

WORTHINGTON - Bailey Onken, a sophomore from Fulda Public School, has been selected to represent Nobles Cooperative Electric at the 2015 Rural Electric Youth Tour to Washington, D.C., June 13-18. She is the daughter of Kraig and Lisa of Reading. She will be representing Nobles Cooperative Electric among 1,400 high school freshmen, sophomores and juniors from cooperatives throughout the country.

The second place winner selected was Brooke Grussing, who attends Adrian High School as a junior. She won $150. Brooke is the daughter of Richard and Kimberly of Rushmore. Kyla Fuerstenberg, a sophomore at Fulda High School, received third place and $100. She is the daughter of Gary and Karen of Wilmont.

The Youth Tour is open to all high school freshmen, sophomores and juniors that live or go to school in Nobles Cooperative Electric's service area. Those that apply participate in the contest by filling out an application and writing an essay. A panel of judges review each submitted application and essay. They choose the finalists, interview them and determine which finalist wins the trip of a lifetime.

The Youth Tour is a top-notch tour that includes meetings with national leaders, as well as visiting all the major sights. Students also meet and discuss their views and interests with students from other states while learning about government, history, careers in public service and electric cooperatives. Nobles Cooperative Electric sponsors this program to identify and encourage future leaders in our community.

SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa -- The winner of the car drop raffle has been announced. It was announced Wednesday Kevin O'Leary of Toronto, Canada was the winner. Organizers had to revert the annual contest to a raffle this year after it was discovered the timer hadn't been placed in the vehicle.

IOWA -- Debate over when school districts may start their calendar year continues, with a bill that gives the state control over start dates stalled in the Iowa Senate.

The Senate Wednesday approved legislation that would require Iowa school districts to start classes no earlier than August 23rd. But Democratic Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal of Council Bluffs filed a motion to reconsider the bill, meaning it is stalled until he calls it up for another vote.

Gronstal said he was concerned the bill excludes high schools from setting year-round calendars. Republican Senate Minority Leader Bill Dix called the bill a compromise.
The issue came up after the state announced plans late last year to stop issuing automatic waivers to allow districts to bypass current start date rules.

CRYSTAL - Police have said that the father of Barway Collins was in an area near the Mississippi River shortly after the 10-year-old was last seen.

Crystal Police Chief Stephanie Revering revealed at a press conference Thursday afternoon that investigators have found the boy’s father was by the river near Interstate 694 North between 4pm and 6pm on the day his son was last seen, March 18.
He was then reported missing at 6.30 p.m. Crystal police searched woodland along the riverfront by interstates 694 and 94 on Wednesday, but their search turned up nothing. Searches will continue, Revering said.

Revering said that the father, who is not under arrest, “continues not to be truthful” with officers, after revealing that he was being considered a suspect at news conference on Tuesday.

Collins, a fourth grader, was last seen after school on March 18 near the Cedarwood apartment building where he lives, in the 5400 block of Douglas Drive North in Crystal. A reward of $12,000 is now being offered to find the person responsible for his disappearance, the police department announced Wednesday.

March 26 news


WORTHINGTON – Two people accused of methamphetamine possession are scheduled to appear in Nobles County District Court next week after allegedly being caught with the illegal substance in their vehicle earlier this month.

According to the criminal complaints, John Mounsamrouath, age 33, of Jackson, and Nicole Ruffcorn, age 32, of Rushmore, are both charged with second-degree possession of a controlled substance. Ruffcorn is also charged with fifth-degree controlled substance possession and drug paraphernalia.

The complaint states a K-9 officer with the Worthington Police Department observed a vehicle driving erratically in the early morning hours of March 18. The officer stopped the car and spoke with the female driver and male passenger, who identified themselves as Ruffcorn and Mounsamrouath. Their behavior was allegedly suspicious - they gave inconsistent stories as to who owned the car, where they were going and who they had just been with.

The officer asked for permission to search both of them, and they consented. While he did not find anything illegal on Mounsamrouath, the officer found a pipe used for smoking marijuana in Ruffcorn’s sweatshirt pocket. He then brought out his K-9 partner to search around the outside of the vehicle. The K-9 alerted to the presence of a controlled substance near the passenger side of the vehicle.

A Nobles County Deputy arrived to assist and a search was performed. Inside Ruffcorn’s purse, a glass meth pipe was found that contained residue. A pouch with meth was also located in the purse. In a storage compartment in the dashboard of the car, a black pouch was discovered that contained baggies and a plastic straw. More than 13 grams of meth combined were taken from the vehicle.

Mounsamrouath is currently being held in the Nobles County Jail; Ruffcorn is out on bail.

LUVERNE — The Luverne Area Chamber is hosting a Spring Loaded Home, Health and Living Show from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at participating Luverne businesses, the Blue Mound Banquet Center, Historic Palace Theatre and salons. A Spring Loaded flyer, filled with coupons, specials and information about the day will be available at all of the locations. There will be free samples, discounts and live demonstrations.

Free seminars will be offered at the Historic Palace Theatre and beauty demos at salons from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The event is open to the public, and people can register to win one of three $100 Chamber gift cards. For more information, visit

PIPESTONE - Pipestone County Commissioners accepted a salvage bid during their March 24 meeting for items inside Central School and decided to inventory the items remaining in the building, according to the Pipestone County Star.

The salvage bid from ND Millwork Salvage and Sales of Paulina, Iowa does not include a total bid amount, but prices for specific items including $100 for cabinets, $40 for hooks and other vintage hardware such as door push plates. The number of items salvaged will be based on the potential market, according to the bid. The work is expected to be done within the next month.

Board members also granted Tyler Reisch, Pipestone County auditor, authority to sell other items such as desks that people have shown interest in at a price to be negotiated. Funds from the sale of any items from the building will go to the tax forfeiture fund to pay for expenses related to the tax forfeiture process.

The board members also directed Reisch and other county employees to inventory items inside the school rather than arrange tours by select community members to show people the condition of the building and what’s inside it as previously discussed. That direction followed the recommendation of Jim O’Neill, assistant Pipestone County attorney.

The board did not rule out a tour by select community members, but decided by consensus to conduct the inventory. Reisch said the inventory will likely be done Friday and will take several hours. The inventory list will then be brought to the building committee for review.

Commissioner Jerry Remund asked that photos be taken during the inventory to show people who question the building’s condition and what remains inside.

SIBLEY, Iowa — A George, Iowa, man is being held in the Osceola County Jail following a pursuit late Tuesday afternoon.

According to the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, witnesses reported seeing a white car pulling a trailer traveling recklessly on 160th Street west of Sibley at approximately 4:15 p.m. Tuesday. When a deputy went to investigate, the driver of the car failed to pull over. Lyon County deputies joined the pursuit, which eventually ended in George, Iowa, where the driver attempted to elude officers on foot. The Iowa State Patrol also assisted in the chase.

Joseph Lee Daggett, 27, of George, was eventually arrested and is charged with eluding, unlawful possession of prescription drugs, fourth-degree theft, two counts of failure to obey a stop sign and reckless driving. He is being held on a $5,000 bond.

ST. PAUL - A broad range of interest groups is lining up behind a push to grant driver's licenses to people living in Minnesota illegally.

Business coalitions, religious leaders and law enforcement officials support the move. They say it would make roads safer as more people pass the required driving tests. They would also be able to buy auto insurance with their licenses.

Rep. Rod Hamilton sponsors one such bill in the state House. The Mountain Lake Republican choked up a few times Wednesday as he spoke to a hearing packed with supporters.

Opponents say giving licenses to people without legal immigration status will make it easier for them to commit voter fraud. The bill's Senate version would mark those licenses as only for driving in an attempt to prevent that from happening.

Wednesday’s committee hearing was for informational purposes only and the committee hasn’t scheduled a vote. And House Speaker Kurt Daudt has said he opposes the bill and doesn’t plan to allow a House floor vote if it would get to that point.

March 25 news


WORTHINGTON – During the Nobles County Commissioner meeting Tuesday, Terri Janssen, Community Health Services Administrator and Health Supervisor, explained a new grant the Des Moines Valley and Nobles County Public Health SHIP Team has been selected to receive through the Centers for Disease Control and the Minnesota Department of Health. The grant, which is referred to as the 1422 grant, is for over $300,000 annually for four years, for a total of $1.2 million and will focus on improving health in the areas of preventing and better managing obesity, diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

Fiscal agents of the grant will be Des Moines Valley, and according to their public administrator Pat Stewart, this is the opportunity of a lifetime. Stewart said a program coordinator will need to be hired, as will a nurse and several health workers. Their hope is that by the time the grant runs out, the program will be self-sustaining.

Janssen said they have work to do, but she is excited to do it.

Public Health also was pleased to accept a $1,600 grant from the Worthington Regional Health Care Foundation to fund two 16-week classes – one in English and one in Spanish – regarding diabetes prevention.

During a lengthy meeting, the commissioners approved conditional use permits for Brian and Russell Penning of Wilmont, Anthony Lonneman of Ellsworth and Kevin Kolander of Fulda, approved a beer and set-up license for Dakota Golf Management for Prairie View Golf Course and approved the sale of surplus property from Public Works.

Public Works Director Stephen Schnieder brought to the commissioners’ attention the fact that residents in some townships are moving the address location signs up by the edge of the roadways, in some cases next to or onto the mailbox support. Schnieder said he does not have the authority to tell them they cannot move the signs, so his crew has been putting them back when they can.

He didn’t know, he said, if the residents had been getting permission from townships to move the signs, or if they were just moving them of their own accord, which is illegal. The signs need to be consistent for emergency crews to find them, and the county tried to work with individual homeowners as far as location, Schnieder said.

Commissioner Marv Zylstra put it best, stating the county “could not have the signs randomly all over the place, because the next thing you know, they’ll be down in someone’s machine shed.”

The commissioners also approved an agreement for the Worthington Regional Economic Development Corp to be the Local Development Organization, or LDO, for federally derived economic development funds. Moving the funds defederalizes them, removing some of the restrictions, making them more accessible to businesses for future loans. According to WREDC Abraham Algadi, there are still strict guidelines, but moving the funds gets the money out there and working in the community.

WORTHINGTON - Minnesota West Community & Technical Worthington Campus will host a retirement party for Mike Fury on Wednesday, April 1, 2015, 2:30 – 4:00 p.m. in the Commons. Cake and punch will be served. This event is open to the public. For more information contact Sharon Balster 507-372-3473 or by email at

SLAYTON - This year marks the 75th Anniversary of the devastating car crash in Slayton that killed 12 young people from the towns of Jackson, Fulda, Slayton, and Hadley. At noon on Thursday, April 2, the Dinehart Lunchbox Lecture Series will present “The 1940 Auto Crash: Seventy Five Years Later.”

Murray County Museums Coordinator, Janet Timmerman will present a synopsis of the events of that night and discuss the aftermath of what has happened in the intervening years since. It was a defining moment for the community of Slayton, one that has gone down in history. It is still considered one of the worst two car accidents in the nation. Held up as a cautionary tale for young drivers, the twelve THINK signs along the curve at the south end of Maple Avenue, where it turns into Maple Road, gives every driver pause. Bring a lunch along. Coffee and tea are provided. The cost is $3 per person and, as always, members of the Historical Society are free.

SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa - The Dickinson County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Tuesday to send a survey to other Iowa counties asking them if they feel the Master Matrix system should be revised to give local authorities more control over the placement of large confined animal feeding operations, or CAFOS.

The supervisors took the action after hearing from Jim Youngclass, a former Dickinson County Extension Director who now lives in Grinnell and serves on the board of directors of Concerned Citizens of Iowa. He commended the supervisors for raising the issue and for trying to protect their water resources.

Counties will have 30 days in which to return the survey to the Dickinson County Auditor's Office. Following that, Dickinson County Supervisors will review the results and decide what action to take from there.

MINNESOTA - Republican leaders in the Minnesota House outlined a $40 billion budget blueprint Tuesday, $3 billion less than what Gov. Mark Dayton has proposed, setting up a clash with DFLers who sharply criticized the plan.

The centerpiece is $2 billion of as-yet unspecified tax relief. That would be just a little more than the state’s projected budget surplus of $1.9 billion and fits in with an earlier ad campaign by state Republican Party Chairman Keith Downey to “give it all back.”
The budget overall largely holds the line on spending, with modest increases in certain areas and some potential for service cuts because the Republican plan does not account for inflationary pressures in the cost of delivering services.

If adopted, the GOP budget would increase total state spending by 1.7 percent from current levels, compared with 9.3 percent under Dayton’s plan.

“Our priority, really, is to put money in the pockets of hardworking Minnesota families,” House Speaker Kurt Daudt said Tuesday, flanked by key Republican House leaders.

Daudt did not explain how they plan to distribute $2 billion in tax relief, but said it would not be in the form of individual rebate checks.

DFL leaders immediately denounced the GOP budget proposal, saying Republicans could not defend reductions in services with the prospect of a $2 billion surplus. Republicans say they are merely slowing the rate of growth.

Republicans say they will spend $11.6 billion on health and human services in the 2016-17 budget period — an increase of $440 million over the current allotment. But the Minnesota Management and Budget office puts projected costs for providing the services mandated under current law for the next two years at $12.8 billion. DFLers say that translates into a $1.2 billion cut in the services that agency can provide.

“That’s real cuts to people in this state in a time of huge budget surpluses,” said House Minority Leader Paul Thissen, DFL-Minneapolis. The GOP plan, he said Tuesday, “is a recipe for a shutdown.” The last government shutdown occurred in 2011, when Republicans who controlled the House and Senate clashed with Dayton.

Matt Swenson, a spokesman for Dayton, said the governor’s office is reviewing the budget spending limits and declined to comment further.

Apply for the MSR&PC See For Yourself Trip to Vietnam


The Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council understands that international markets play a crucial role in providing value to Minnesota soybeans. With more than half of Minnesota’s annual soybean crop exported each year, the MSR&PC invests soybean checkoff money to grow markets and build relationships with international customers.

And because the MSR&PC takes investing Minnesota soybean farmers’ checkoff dollars seriously, the Council is offering Minnesota soybean farmers the opportunity to evaluate those investments with a See For Yourself mission to Vietnam. The dates are tentatively set for March 16, 2016, through March 27, 2016. The Dates are subject to change.

Interested candidates can apply below. Your application doesn’t obligate you to participate, nor does it guarantee you will be selected for this mission. The MSR&PC will fund a portion of your costs.

For questions or more information about the SFY Mission to Vietnam, contact MSR&PC Vice Chairman Keith Schrader by phone at 507-649-1574 or by email at

March 24 news


WORTHINGTON – The Worthington City Council on Monday approved the most recent draft of an employment contract between the city and new city administrator Steve Robinson. The draft was prepared by Robinson and Dr. Richard Fursman of Brimeyer Fursman, the employment firm hired to find the new administrator.

The start date on the contract, which was originally set for April 13, has now been moved to today. Performance evaluations will occur six months and one year after Robinson’s start date, and annually thereafter. Even thought he has only worked for the city for six months, Robinson will be credited with five years of completed service for Paid Time Off compensation.

While the starting salary of $90,200 will not change, increases in compensation will be dependent on the results of the performance evaluations in addition to fixed annual increases. If Robinson’s employment is terminated by the council, he would be awarded benefits for 12 months, instead of the six months originally proposed.

A proposed interim plan for the Department of Public Works was also discussed and approved. It was recommended Street Supervisor Todd Wietzema take on added responsibilities within the department until a permanent replacement for the director assumes the duties. Wietzema will be paid an additional $2 per hour while he performs the additional duties.

Robinson said the office ran well before he took on the role of the Public Works Director, and he has no doubt it will continue to run well during this transition because the staff is very competent and knows their jobs well.

An application for a forgivable loan through the workforce housing program was also approved in the amount of $18,664 for a property on Pauline Avenue. According to Director of Community and Economic Development Brad Chapulis, the Tax Increment Financing District is one of the earlier ones established in the mid 1980s for new construction only, and is intended for first time home buyers. The purpose of the forgivable loan is to be used for infrastructure and intended to reduce the cost of the lot.

The council went into closed session to discuss strategy for an upcoming scheduled mediation. In 2012, they used the eminent domain process to acquire land from Verla Ling that was needed for the construction of the Highway 59 North Initiative Infrastructure. She was awarded just under $171,000 for the land, but is appealing that amount. A jury trial has been scheduled for the matter, but the judge in charge of the case has ordered that the alternate dispute resolution be completed by July.

WORTHINGTON – A Worthington man pleaded guilty in two pending cases Monday in Nobles County District Court, admitting to a fourth-degree assault on a peace officer in one case and using a Alford Plea to admit to second-degree assault in another case.

Daniel Bockenstedt, age 26, got involved in the first case in 2012 when he almost hit the vehicle of an off-duty officer, who was with his young son at the time. When the officer cautioned him to slow down, Bockenstedt reacted by backing his vehicle up to the officer’s and swearing. When the officer exited the vehicle to talk, Bockenstedt allegedly threatened him with a knife. When the officer left with his son, Bockenstedt followed and tried to run him off the road.

In the second case, Bockenstedt allegedly stabbed a friend during a dispute over a video game in 2014. Bockenstedt claimed at the time of the incident he was defending himself when his friend attacked him after losing a video game. He used an Alford Plea, which does not admit guilt, but rather admits a defendant believes a jury will find him guilty, given the evidence.

Sentencing will take place after a pre-sentencing investigation is complete.

LUVERNE - A new well will provide campers with fresh, safe water at Blue Mounds State Park after another well was sealed due to the presence of E.coli, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources.

Park Manager Chris Ingebretsen said that a new 330-foot well has cleared all tests from the Minnesota Department of Health and will provide campers with clean, fresh water.

According to Ingebretson, the new well was dug last November and extensive testing has been done since to be sure the water is free of bacteria. The park has gotten the green light and is all set for campers when they officially turn the water on May 1.

In May of last year, routine testing identified a positive sample of E.coli in the water system serving the main campground and office. Although no visitors were affected by the water, all water spigots were signed as unsafe for drinking throughout the system. A number of options were explored, Ingebretsen said, with the best solution being to seal the contaminated well with concrete and dig a new well.

Updates and more information on the park can be found at
WORTHINGTON — Sanford Worthington Medical Center will host the Books Are Fun book fair from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. March 31 in the hospital lobby. For more information, contact the SWMC Education Department, 372-3106 or 372-3256.

SPENCER, Iowa - A search warrant executed over the weekend on an apartment in Spencer has resulted in the arrests of four people on drug charges.

Spencer police say the search was conducted Saturday at 107 West 3rd Street, apartment 5. It resulted in authorities seizing 41 grams of what is alleged to be marijuana, 7.2 ounces of hashish oil, a large amount of currency and numerous items of drug paraphernalia.

Arrested were 18-year-old Devin Hopper, 18-year-old Tyrell Gibson, 21-year-old Austin Muilenberg and 23-year-old Jared Nissen, all of Spencer. They are charged with possession of marijuana with intent to deliver, manufacturing hashish oil, violation of a drug tax stamp, gathering where controlled substances are unlawfully used and possession of drug paraphernalia. Nissen was additionally charged with one count of interference with official acts.

All four were booked into the Clay County Jail.

Spirit Lake man arrested after driving through building


SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa – The Spirit Lake Police Department arrested 24-year-old Quentin Karlyle of Spirit Lake on Monday after he allegedly drove a 2002 Dodge Durango into an apartment building in the early morning hours.

According to information released by the police department, authorities were dispatched to 2302 Sunner Avenue at 1 a.m. Monday in reference to a vehicle that had driven into a building. At the scene, officers found the Durango inside apartments No. 4 and 5. The Durango had entered the south end of the building and traveled north through the building, causing an estimated $50,000 in damages and injuring three residents. They were treated at the scene for minor injuries by medical personnel. The residents were also assisted in finding temporary residency.

The Durango sustained an estimated $5,000 in damages and is considered a total loss.
Karlyle was transported to the Dickinson County Jail and charged with operating while intoxicated, reckless driving and failure to maintain control.

March 23 news


WORTHINGTON – Fareway in Worthington will be closed from 10 a.m. to noon today in observance of the Darrell Jansma funeral. Fareway apologizes for any inconvenience.

WORTHINGTON – Gone Country will celebrate 10 years at the Worthington Memorial Auditorium Performing Arts Center Saturday with two “The Best of Gone Country” shows – one at 2 p.m. and one at 7:30 p.m. In between, there will be a burger feed fundraiser from 4 to 7:30 p.m. in the auditorium lobby, with the Rock-Nobles Cattlemen grilling burgers.

Tickets for either the 2 p.m. or 7:30 p.m. shows may be purchased at the Memorial Auditorium box office between 9 a.m. and 1 p.m., today through Friday. Tickets will also be available for purchase at the door.

WORTHINGTON - Minnesota West Community & Technical College - Worthington Campus will host a book signing event and reception at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in the Commons featuring David Mills in honor of his published book, "Cold War in a Cold Land: Fighting Communism on the Northern Plains." There will be a short presentation followed by the book signing and reception serving refreshments. This event is free and open to the public. For more information contact Marie Johnson at 507-372-3472 or by email at

WORTHINGTON -- A reminder - The Worthington Young Professionals Network is hosting a social event tonight at the Oxford Bowl, 325 Oxford St.

Social hour will be from 6 to 7 p.m., with bowling beginning at 7 p.m. There will be free food and door prizes. Bowling will be at each person’s own expense. The event is open to all young professionals in the Worthington area.

SIBLEY, Iowa - A Sibley man has been sentenced to 180 days in jail in connection with the possession of stolen farm and construction equipment. Former Osceola County sheriff’s deputy Michael Block, age 53, was sentenced Friday in Osceola County District Court after pleading guilty last month to eight counts of theft. As part of a plea agreement, 11 other counts of theft were dismissed.

Authorities say Block stole farm and construction equipment that was reported missing in four Iowa counties. The equipment was valued at more than $200,000.

Block turned himself in to authorities in April, after Osceola County sheriff's deputies served warrants on his property and found items that had been reported stolen.

SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa - The Dickinson County Office of Veteran Affairs has announced a contest for a new design for the Dickinson County Flag and Logo.

Dickinson County residents of any age are encouraged to submit their artwork for the design. The artwork will be judged by a panel of County employees. Officials say the art work should promote the county and what it has to offer.

They also note several rules for the contest, including that the applicant must be a resident of Dickinson County. Submissions should be in color on an 8.5 x 11 piece of paper, with the deadline for entries April 30, 2015. Entries should also include the name, age and address of the artist, and a school if the artist is a student.

Artwork may be mailed or delivered to the Dickinson County Veteran Affairs Office, located at the Court House in Spirit Lake.

PIPESTONE - The Pipestone Economic Development Authority (EDA) has hired a new management company for its 18-unit Prairie Winds Apartment building, according to the Pipestone County Star.

Van Binsbergen & Associates out of Montevideo will take over from Lloyd Management effective April 1.

An EDA subcommittee had worked with Lloyd since last December on ways to create a positive cash flow for the property. After meeting with Lloyd several times, solutions remained elusive and during its February meeting, the EDA asked Jeff Jones, city administrator, to look into other firms.

The EDA acted during its March 9 meeting to switch to Van Binsbergen based upon the subcommittee’s recommendation. Kevin Paulsen, EDA president, said the subcommittee was impressed with Van Binsbergen’s track record of turning around struggling buildings and had a list of ideas to manage Prairie Winds to full occupancy that included cost-savings measures, ways to make the apartments look more inviting and marketing strategies.

NATION - The self-declared Islamic State has posted names, photos and what it says are addresses of 100 U.S. military personnel, calling on its supporters to "deal" with them. The extremist group's so-called "hacking division," says the individuals have been part of efforts to defeat ISIS in Syria, Iraq and Yemen.

It says it has decided to release the information about the U.S. servicemen and servicewomen so "brothers in America can deal with you."

NPR has learned that the Department of Defense is investigating the threat but that officials believe the information was gleaned from public sources and does not represent a breach of government servers. A DOD official said it appears the list is people who are active on social media or have spoken to press.

As NPR's Dina Temple-Raston notes, several months ago the FBI and Pentagon asked military personnel to take identifying material off the web in anticipation of just such a possibility. Dina says that defense officials also say some of the personnel on the list had nothing to do with strikes against ISIS.

The New York Times adds that one example of this is the inclusion of B-52 bomber crew members stationed in Louisiana and North Dakota. B-52s, the Times says, have never been used in the anti-ISIS campaign.

"Several women are included on the list, but their faces in the photos were blurred. One of the photos appears to be at an official meeting with President Obama," the Times says.