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Some women working in northwestern Minnesota have virtually closed the wage gap with their male counterparts, according to one measure cited in a recent state report. "Since the end of the recession, median hourly wages increased faster for women than for men in health care and social assistance — so much so, wage rates in the industry were relatively even in 2016," said the report by regional labor market analyst Chet Bodin.
There wasn't really a last straw that made Billy Euerle walk away from his Garfield dairy farm last year. Things had been bad for several years for Euerle, who grew up in Osakis. He trudged through his days, milking Hot Chocolate and Caroline and Brooke and all the others, barely sleeping. Facing terrible milk prices and crushing debt, he struggled to find motivation. Every chore seemed to take twice as long, and his whole family was feeling the stress. To top it off, severe storms in 2017 ravaged several farm buildings.
When a Minnesota National Guard captain sought a job interview with Head Start, the organization gave her a chance for an interview, then hired her and supported her while she served overseas. Now that captain, Chessie Andrist, who teaches Head Start in Osakis, has returned the favor, nominating the Head Start director for a Department of Defense award. Val Arnquist, who directs the Head Start office of West Central Minnesota Communities Action in Elbow Lake, accepted the Patriot Award on Friday, Dec. 15 at a meeting in Alexandria.
A HONOR ROLL The following students were named to the first quarter A honor roll at Osakis High School. 12TH GRADE Derek D. Hetland, Karlee J. Hoffarth, Austin R. Kulzer, Shane M. Massmann, Philip M. Mathews, Riley L. Mounsdon, Lauren G. Savageau, Skyler M. Schmidt, Bree K. Timmerman, Cynthia J. Van Acker, Colton C. Waldvogel 11TH GRADE Kylie E. Anderson, Morgan C. Herzog, Shea A. Olson, Elizabeth N. Pahl, Matthew R. Peikert, Adam M. Petrich, Morgan C. Rach, Jarret J. Seela, Rachel E. Walsh, Jacob M. Wielenberg 10TH GRADE
A young Douglas County horsewoman's strong performance in a statewide horse show this fall earned her a trip to a national horse judging event in Oklahoma on Oct. 27. Madison Floden, a Hoofbeats 4-H member and a senior at Osakis High School, went to Oklahoma with two other Minnesotans, both from Stevens County.
A noxious weed — Palmer amaranth — has invaded Todd County. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture confirmed the infestation in a conservation planting this week. The department is investigating where the seed came from. While some varieties of amaranth are harvested as grain, Palmer amaranth is one of the nine varieties considered noxious and invasive. It grows rapidly, at times topping 8 feet. One female plant typically produces 100,000 to 500,000 seeds. Resistant to multiple herbicides, the weed can harm crop yields and is expensive to control.
Two Osakis schools benefited during the past school year from the Arvig School Partnership Program. The Osakis Public School received $768 and St. Agnes School received $448. In a news release, Arvig said it donated more than $100,000 to schools in its service area, which includes Osakis. The total amount donated since the beginning of the program was more than $660,000, the communications provider said. Arvig serves about 9,000 square miles, including Moorhead, Rochester, Duluth and Marshall.
Lakes Area Radio Theatre is teaming up with the Corral Saloon and Eatery in Nelson for a western-themed dinner and a live radio theater show on Sunday, Sept. 10, at the restaurant. The barbecue chicken dinner is at 4 p.m. with two western radio shows starting at 5:30 p.m. The first show, from "Gunsmoke," features "Chester's Hanging," a classic show where Matt and Chester once again get themselves into a sticky situation. With Chester on the verge of being strung up by the bad guys, Matt needs to outwit the outlaws.