Two Die In UTV Accident; Fire Danger Is High; Aerial Lift Bridge, DECC Need Major Repairs

>>Two Dead After UTV Crash In Benton County

(Maywood Township, MN)    Two women are dead after a crash between a UTV and a pickup in Benton County.  Investigators say the women were traveling south on Ronneby Road in Maywood Township when their vehicle hit the northbound pickup.  Both vehicles wound up in a ditch and the UTV caught fire.  The women were pulled from the UTV and died before they could be taken to the hospital.  Police say the man in the pickup was injured while trying to help pull the women from the burning UTV.  The cause of the crash is still under investigation.

>>Local Fundraisers Benefit Causes

Two notable Bemidji fundraisers last week benefitted separate causes.  The first 100 Women Who Care event at the Keg ’N Cork Thursday raised $11,500.  Donors ultimately voted to direct contributions to Evergreen Youth and Family Services.  On Wednesday, Community Pint Night at Bemidji Brewing netted $362 as the first 2024 event benefitting Paul Bunyan Broadcasting’s Radiothon To End Child Abuse.

>>Fire Danger High In Most Of Minnesota

(St. Paul, MN)    Authorities are warning Minnesotans to avoid open burning wherever possible as the fire danger remains high in most of the state.  The latest Department of Natural Resources Fire Danger map shows western and southern Minnesota with a very high risk of fire, with only the northeast corner of the state considered at moderate risk.  The National Weather Service issued red flag warnings for several areas over the weekend due to dry, windy conditions.

>>Teen, Woman Injured In Shooting In St. Cloud

(St. Cloud, MN)    A 17-year-old boy is in critical but stable condition after a shooting at a gas station in St. Cloud.  Police say an argument between a group of people at the gas station led to a fight early yesterday morning.  Investigators believe someone involved in the fight pulled out a gun and shot the teen and wounded another woman.  A 17-year-old suspect was arrested and charged with felony assault with a firearm and being a felon in possession of a handgun.

>>Two Major Duluth Tourist Attractions Need Millions In Repairs

(Duluth, MN)    Two major tourist stops in Duluth need millions of dollars in repairs.  The Aerial Lift Bridge is plagued with rust and corrosion, as well as the seats in the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center.  Leaders have sought upgrades to the bridge for years.  It needs 20 million dollars in repairs, and the city is lobbying for more than eight million dollars to add to city funds and state and federal money.  Meanwhile, the DECC is lobbying for six-point-two million dollars to pay for projects including the Symphony Hall seating and re-worked auditorium space for people with disabilities.

>>Cloquet School Board Announces Termination Of 23 Employee Contracts

(Cloquet, MN)    The Cloquet Public Schools is letting 23 employees go in an attempt to close a two-million-dollar budget deficit.  The school board announced Friday that it is terminating the contracts of 23 probationary employees.  The school system needs to cut expenses to compensate for the loss of two federal grants as well as a decline in enrollment.  Officials estimate the cuts will save about one-point-six-million dollars.

>>More Than 100 Cats Removed From Home In Crow Wing County

(Crosby, MN)    An animal organization in St. Cloud is looking for new homes for dozens of

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